Residents at the Margaret Thatcher Infirmary, the on-site care home for nearly 50 Chelsea Pensioners, were among the first to receive visitors under yesterday’s (8 March) lockdown rule changes.
From Monday 8 March, care home residents across the UK can nominate a single named person who can enter the care home for regular visits. All visitors must follow strict government rules and be tested for Coronavirus, wear appropriate personal protective equipment and follow other infection control measures. Visitors and residents may wish to hold hands but there should not be any other close physical contact. Other friends or family members with visiting arrangements can continue with outdoor visits or behind screens or windows.
Cllr Cem Kemahli, Lead Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health at Kensington and Chelsea Council said:
“It’s crucial for residents to receive visitors and it makes so much difference to their health, wellbeing and quality of life. For family to have that contact again is vital and really important to be playing a part in their loved one’s care.
“Every care home is different and will manage visitors in different ways to meet the needs of all involved. All care homes across the borough have been working really hard to follow government guidance and prepare for allowing named regular visitors.”
Chelsea Pensioner Thomas Wright, 85, said:
“I’ve been so looking forward to seeing my daughter Christine again. It’s felt like a long time since we’ve seen each other, and it’s really made my day. Her next visit can’t come soon enough.”
Thomas’s daughter Christine said: ‘I’ve really missed our visits, as before I was coming once a week. On the plus side, I’ve only had to worry about missing my Dad, and not about his care. He’s been very well looked after here”.
Jayne Cumming, Head of Nursing and Domiciliary Care at the Margaret Thatcher Infirmary said:
“Welcoming anyone into a care home comes with its risks and we’re working hard to manage that. The benefits of our residents receiving visitors again is huge and this always has to be balanced against the risk for each person involved.
“‘It also makes a real difference to us as a care team to see everyone’s spirits lifted when they get to see loved ones again. We want our residents to have the best quality of life and this goes a really long way towards that.”