Guidance has been issued today to Social Care stakeholders regarding the Coronavirus/Covid19.
Many social care clients and residents will be elderly or medically vulnerable, thus deemed the most at risk from Coronavirus.
The CQC notes that it will seek to focus its activity on where there is the greatest risk to quality of care, as well as being flexible in terms of preparation and requirements for inspections. In some cases inspections may be postponed at short notice.
The Department of Health and Social Care notes that the public can assist in understanding the pressures the health and social care systems may be under and be receptive to any changes required in care as a result. If the transmission of the virus increases then measures may be taken such as a distribution strategy for key medicines and equipment to the NHS and social care. It is noted that social care is provided by a wide range of bodies and social care providers should remain in contact with local commissioners, review their business continuity plans and continue to practice proper infection control.
Meanwhile Public Health England has provided detailed guidance on preventing the spread of infection. It recommends that domiciliary social care staff ought to establish if a person is in self isolation prior to their visit. If so, then the person ought to be assessed clinically by telephone. If they are symptomatic then any further physical contact with the person ought to be avoided.
A link to the Department of Health and Social Care Guidance can be found here.
A link to the Public Health England Guidance can be found here.
Jennifer Johnston, Associate, BLM