Lateral Flow Test Update and Visiting Katharine House Hospice Guidelines

To all Patients, Staff, Visitors and Contractors.

The Health, Safety and Wellbeing of our patients, their families and staff remains our absolute priority.

In line with national changes to lockdown restrictions that came in to effect on 12th April we have reviewed our visiting process.

All visitors to KHH will need to have a Lateral Flow Test. We expect all visitors to the Hospice to access a Lateral Flow Test at a local test centre or with a home testing kit. (A list of lateral flow test and collections sites is available on request.)

All adults within England can now obtain LFT to perform at home. These either form work, school or college or from designated pharmacies. Or online at

https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests

Or call 119      7am to 11pm.

Any test results should be sent to you as a text message or email and confirmation of the negative test taken within 48 hrs will be needed before you are allowed in to the Hospice.

 

Visiting Patients

Visitors will be asked to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) which will include a face mask, gloves and apron.

We will continue to support two visitors to a patient for one session. These may be from separate households.  (So visitors are not able to come and go throughout the day.) Social distancing must be encouraged and if appropriate, maintained.

Visiting times will be from 11.00 through to 16.00.  Outside of these hours need to be discussed with the Nurse in Charge.

In exceptional circumstances guidance regarding more visitors can be sought from the Nurse in charge of the ward.

If visitors have any Covid symptoms (high temperature, cough, loss of smell or taste) or have been contacted by NHS Test and Trace advising isolation please do not visit the Hospice.

Counselling support

In these challenging times with COVID-19 and the necessary restrictions this places on all our lives we have been establishing new ways for you to contact us for support. The Family Support Team are available Monday-Friday from 9.00-4.30pm and some weekday evenings. If you are worried, anxious, or struggling with difficult feelings please keep an eye on this page as we will regularly add information, links and resources. If you would like to talk to someone we can arrange for one of our counsellors to contact you to offer telephone support. These phone calls are by appointment only and can be booked by phoning us on 01785 254 645 and asking for the family support team, or by emailing familysupport@khhospice.org.uk

We have also launched a new bereavement support facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/268819704145704/

COVID-19 CARE UPDATE

Katharine House Hospice’s first priority is the welfare of our patients, staff and volunteers and that we all take reasonable steps to protect the wellbeing of ourselves and others in this current and ever changing situation.

Hospice Day Therapies has closed as of Wednesday 18th of March. Patients have being informed individually and their personal circumstances assessed, our team will continue to offer appropriate support.

Our Inpatient Department, Hospice at Home team and Embrace Quality Care are continuing to operate as normally as possible.

 

Changes to Inpatient care

Since the current advice regarding self-isolation and social distancing was released we have been faced with immediate difficulty staffing the inpatient unit in terms of all professionals- Health Care Assistants (HCAs), Nurses and Doctors.

We have rapidly considered options to safeguard our inpatient service and try and mitigate the risks of key staff shortages whilst maintaining patient safety.

We will change the type of service we offer and the model we use so that we can support as many patients as possible in response to changing staffing levels and yet still maintain the safety of our patients and staff.

We propose that for now we will admit those patients thought to be in last weeks / days of life with largely ‘non-specialist’ needs. These would include those whose care can be managed with the support of HCAs, with the input of a single nurse on shift to to manage other issues as they occur.

HCAs will ensure good care is delivered to these patients, but without a full team of specialist staff this unit would no longer necessarily be a suitable environment for patients with complex symptom control issues for whom their care may be better delivered at the hospital or in the home during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Visiting the Hospice

In order to reduce the risk of our patients, staff and volunteers being exposed to the COVID-19 virus we are asking anybody with the following symptoms not to enter the Hospice:

Please DO NOT enter the Hospice if you have any of the following symptoms:
A high temperature – above 37.8C / 99F – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
A new, continuous dry cough – this means you’ve started coughing repeatedly

We shall be temporaily suspending viewings of the Memory Book in hospice reception. We apologise for any inconvenience.

The wellbeing and safety of our patients, and the continued ability of our staff to care for our patients, is of paramount importance to us at Katharine House Hospice.

Thank you for your support in allowing our team to safely care for your relative/friend at this time.

We are aware of the current pandemic situation and want to reassure you that every precaution is being taken to protect your relative/friend.

To be able to protect all of our patients, as well as our staff, we have taken the difficult decision to limit visiting to the hospice following the government’s request for people to stay at home in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

We will continue to support two visitors to a patient for one session. These may be from separate households.  (So visitors are not able to come and go throughout the day.) Social distancing must be encouraged and if appropriate, maintained.

Visiting times will be from 11.00 through to 16.00.  Outside of these hours need to be discussed with the Nurse in Charge.

If you have the ability to contact your relative / friend via virtual means using your own devices, such as IPads or mobile phones, then do please feel free to use these. We have free WiFi available for your relative / friend to use in the In Patient Unit and we are happy to assist them to connect their devices to it.

We understand that this is a difficult and worrying time for you and your relative / friend. Please rest assured that we will do our very best to support you in remaining in contact.

Thank you for your commitment to assisting us in providing safe care to your relative/friend.