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Care England comment on visitor guidance in care homes

by Lisa Carr

Care England, the largest representative body for independent providers of adult social care, has expressed disappointment that the Department of Health and Social Care took so long to deliver guidance on visitors to care homes.
Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “This guidance should have been with care providers last month.  We are at a loss to understand why the Department of Health and Social Care cannot act quickly in a crisis or why it is deaf to the comments and input from the sector”. 
As the rest of the country unlocked in June, Care England produced its own guidance for Learning Disability providers, but stopped short of providing guidance for services for older people in the belief that it would be delivered by the Department of Health and Social Care ‘imminently’.  The DHSC guidance, published today can be found at www.dhsc.gov.uk

Care England is concerned that the guidance does not address a range of issues including: Supported living Insufficient information about Local Outbreak Boards Volunteers Support staff ratios Lack of information around how a dynamic risk assessment may affect the frequency of visits. 

Martin Green continues: “This guidance fails to consider the issues around visitors and residents leaving the care setting. As lockdown lifts we are likely to see many care providers and relatives wanting to take their loved one out for visits. Also, we need to look beyond outdoor visits and recognise that these new conditions may be with us for quite some time. The failure to acknowledge this nuance underscores the lack of governmental understanding of the complexities present within the adult social care sector”.

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