The Priory – Final update of 2022
I hope everyone who was able to join us for our Christmas tea party last week enjoyed it as much as we all did. It was a lovely occasion and great to see so many families with their loved ones. A massive thank you to Helen of course, and to all the kitchen elves. Next year we will need magic teapots that refill themselves with mulled wine! These kinds of days put a smile on everyone’s face and are a perfect start to Christmas.
Hopefully everyone has their Christmas plans in place and you have told Lynne who will be joining us for Christmas lunch. As always, there will be plenty of food and plenty of drink, so doesn’t that make a perfect day – with probably, an afternoon nap!
Please do come in as often as you can over the festive season – even if it just for a quick catch-up. We all love to see you, but please do give us a call beforehand, so that we know you are coming.
A number of families have asked about presents for staff from families and residents. Christmas is the only time of year that we do accept gifts and to make it fair to everyone, because there are many staff “behind the scenes” who keep the home running, we collect them and raffle them out to all the staff early in the New Year. And if you have been so kind to give something, thank you very much from us all.
Finally, we also have an update from the Department of Health & Social Care on the wearing of masks. They are now allowing homes to assess the wearing of masks on the basis of local risk, rather than by general mandate. In other words, as from Wednesday 21st December, the mandatory wearing of masks by all staff and visitors will be removed. This does obviously increase the potential risk of infection, but hopefully the benefits for us all, will outweigh that risk. In doing this, please do think about visiting the home if you or anyone you have recently met, have any potential symptoms of flu or Covid. For once, the explanation from the DHSC is clear and concise, so I have copied it below for you.
We recognise that the use of face masks all of the time across adult social care can cause difficulties for people receiving care and staff looking after them. Guidance has now been amended to support a risk-based approach. This replaces previous guidance that stated face masks should be worn at all times across adult social care.
Decisions on the use of masks should balance the risk of infections spreading with any risks or benefits that arise from the use of masks. Providers should follow updated guidance and continue to engage with staff and people receiving care to inform decisions on when masks should be used. As set out in guidance, masks should continue to be used by:
- A staff member caring for a person suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19
- A staff member who is a household or overnight contact of someone with COVID-19
- Staff and visitors if there is an outbreak of COVID-19 in the setting.
- A staff member if the person receiving care prefers a carer to wear a mask
The use of masks may also be considered if caring for someone who is particularly vulnerable to severe outcomes from COVID-19 (e.g. potentially eligible for COVID-19 therapeutics) on an individual basis and in accordance with their preferences. Mask wearing may also be considered when an event or gathering is assessed as having a particularly high risk of transmission.
This local risk-based approach means that in the future, we may need to return to wearing masks for a short period of time, should we assess that the risk has heightened. This will only be done if local infection rates become high, or we have a suspected outbreak. But as always, we will keep you informed of any changes.
Have a wonderful, mask free Christmas from us all and of course, a very happy New Year.