COVID-19 (Coronavirus) update

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Coronavirus Update
Published on: Saturday 17 Apr 2021 at 15:56

Latest Covid Update – September 2021

In line with other healthcare providers in England, we are continuing to implement protective measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in order to protect our vulnerable patients and staff. This includes asking staff and visitors to continue wearing face coverings, testing regularly and maintaining social distancing when in the Hospice.

Please ensure that you are aware of our current guidance before making your visit to the Hospice. 


Whilst visiting the Hospice…

Lateral flow testing: To ensure the safety of our patients, staff and other visitors, all visitors are required to take a Lateral Flow Covid test prior to arriving at the Hospice. You must be able to show a registered, negative test result before entering the Hospice. Lateral flow test kits are free, and easily available from local pharmacies, or from the Government’s website.

You must take a lateral flow test, and register their negative result, before arriving at the Hospice for the first time. You must show the registered negative test result on arrival. (The test must have been taken in the last 24 hours.) Anyone without a test result will be asked to take a lateral flow test and register it on arrival. Anyone who tests positive will be asked to leave the Hospice and follow Government guidelines.

Regular lateral flow testing is essential. The frequency required is subject to change but you will be informed of current practice on arrival to the Hospice / Inpatient Unit

Face coverings: A face covering must be worn on entry to the Hospice and for the duration of your visit – unless you are exempt.

Hand sanitisation: Please ensure you use the hand sanitiser gel provided at Reception and around the Hospice, and regularly wash your hands with soap and water. You must adhere to strict hand-washing when entering the building, if you are visiting a loved one on our Inpatient Unit, upon leaving the Hospice, and when you get home. We also advise that you use the antibacterial wipes, provided at Reception, to cleanse your mobile phone before entering.

Check in via the NHS Covid-19 app: Please check-in to the NHS Covid-19 app on your mobile device by scanning the QR code which is on display at Reception,. This is for the national Test and Trace system.

Maintain social distancing: Please ensure that you maintain social distancing in the Hospice.


Inpatient Unit Visiting Policy

We know how important visiting is to patients and their families. In addition to our overarching guidance on visiting the Hospice, please see below information on safely making a visit to our Inpatient Unit. Our Inpatient Unit visiting policy is in place to keep our very vulnerable patients safe at all times, with your cooperation and support.

Lateral flow testing: Visitors will need to take Lateral Flow tests on a twice-weekly basis whilst they are visiting Inpatient Unit patients. We require evidence of a negative result to be shown at the first visit.

On occasion, there may be some variation to testing frequency required of visitors, in order to ensure safety at the Hospice for our vulnerable patients; if this is the case you will informed on entry to the Hospice / Inpatient Unit.

Entering the Inpatient Unit: Once you have signed in at the Reception, we ask you to enter the Inpatient Unit by the main corridor behind Reception.

Social distancing: Whilst visiting your loved one we will ask you to maintain social distancing when a member of staff enters the room and we may ask you to step out of the room for a short period. We recognise that human touch is so important so, if you do touch your loved one, then please wash your hands before and as soon as possible afterwards.

Children or pets visiting: If children under the age of 11, or pets, wish to visit, then please discuss this with the Nurse in charge and this will be taken on a case by case basis.

Using facilities on the Inpatient Unit: Whilst we still need to restrict access to communal areas in the Inpatient Unit, visitors are now able to use the Inpatient Unit’s kitchen facilities, although this is restricted to one designated visitor per patient.

Thank you for your co-operation. Please call the Inpatient Unit on 01279 773777 if you have an enquiry.


Do not visit St Clare Hospice if…

Please do not visit if you or anyone in your family have symptoms of COVID-19 or have tested positive for COVID-19, until you no longer have symptoms (after a minimum of 10 days) and the recommended isolation period has ended. Please also do not visit if you are self-isolating, and/or have received a notification from the Test and Trace service instructing you to self-isolate. Please follow the current government guidance.


Visiting our Shops

We strongly encourage our customers to our shops to wear face coverings, to help protect our staff, volunteers and other customers.


Online support

We have a range of support available to people which can be accessed either online, or by telephone.

This includes our Virtual Bereavement Cafés and Bereavement Café Facebook Group, which connect local, bereaved people in West Essex and East Herts together, to support each other through grief and loss. Please click here to find out more about Bereavement Café here.

We also run a Bereavement Support Helpline which operates from 9am – 5pm, Monday to Friday. The number to call is 01279 967670. The Helpline offers an opportunity to talk about your loss, whether recent or in the past, with a trained and compassionate member of the St Clare team. It is free to call, though charges may apply in line with your standard network rate. Please click here to find out more about our Bereavement Support Helpline.


Hospice at Home or Community services 

If you are under the care of our Hospice at Home Team, or are receiving other hospice services at home, and any of the NHS or government advice applies to you or a family member in your household, please notify us before we visit you.

It is important that our staff are aware of any of the circumstances mentioned in the NHS guidance in advance of a visit. Tis ensures we are able to tailor our visits to patients’ needs and make them effective and safe. All our healthcare professionals follow standard evidence-based guidance for patients’ care and hygiene, which keeps our patients safe and comfortable and makes good care possible.

Please call the Hospice at Home Team on 01279 773773 if you have an enquiry.


For the latest information and guidance on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

If you think you might have coronavirus or you’ve been in close contact with someone who has it:

• Stay at home and avoid close contact with other people
• Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital
• Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do next

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