A sit down with Allison Squires Hazel End Care Home Manager
Allison Squires, Home Manager at Hazel End care home believes the key to success is making it a home-from-home. Having successfully taken her previous home from a building site up to achieving an Outstanding rating from the CQC, Allison is now making her mark on this new care home. We sat down with Allison to discuss her advice for caring and protecting your elderly loved one during coronavirus.
You were previously the manager at an Outstanding care home, what is the reason you moving to Hazel End?
I took on a commissioning project for another private organisation. I took the home from a building site to a home that is rated outstanding by CQC and won 5 awards. I wanted to commission again and thought I would take all my knowledge & skills to a smaller, family run organisation. The plan is for Hazel End to be recognised as Outstanding and award winning too.
Are care homes safe during Covid-19?
I know there has been a lot of scary stories out there, however, Hazel End is a very safe place to be.
We have been Covid-19 free throughout the pandemic. We have achieved this by very strict infection prevention control measures and regular testing of residents and staff. We also have very strict measures in place for new residents that join us in the home, we are able to offer testing and isolation to ensure that everyone remains safe until we integrate our new residents into the main community.
Am I able to visit my loved one?
Yes, you can visit your loved one, we offer socially distance visiting in the garden or garden room. We ask that all visits are by appointment and that people only visit if they are well and have not been anywhere where there are Covid-19 cases. On arrival we will check your temperature and ask you to sanitise your hands. We ask that during the visit that there is no physical contact with your loved one and that you maintain social distancing. I appreciate that this is very difficult, however it is essential for the safety of everyone. In some cases, the visit if needed will be supervised from a distance. We also offer virtual visiting via skype and zoom and of course you could always use the good old-fashioned telephone. We realise that this is a very difficult time for residents and relatives, however the staff are keeping the residents occupied with a full range of meaningful activities offered by our Lifestyle Team.
What are you doing to protect the residents?
The residents are in a safe environment / bubble where they have all been tested on a regular basis. We are also monitoring temperatures each day. If anyone becomes unwell, we will respond quickly in line with Public Health Guidance. If anyone must be admitted to hospital, we will ask for a test to be done prior to discharge. On arrival back at the home they will isolate for a further 7 days and be tested again, before integration back with other residents on the community. PPE is available in abundance and we have been fortunate to have been in this position throughout the pandemic. All staff are tested on a regular basis and on arrival to work there is a strict are strict procedures that we follow before we commence out day. Out of work, staff members are maintaining social bubbles and staying out of the public as much as possible. Any members of staff that show any symptoms or covid-19 are asked to isolate at home for the recommended period of time.