Carehome Visits

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,437
0
North West
This is a friendly reminder that we don't allow political discussions and posts on Talking Point - for example those that are primarily about MPs, political parties etc. Please bear this in mind when posting on this thread, and elsewhere on the community.

You can read more about political discussions and Talking Point here: https://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/threads/political-discussions-and-talking-point.80308/
Thank you for this reminder. I think many of us who are genuinely compassionate find it hard to seperate these matters, Can I suggest the Alzheimer's Society has a seperate campaigns section where these matters are more readily taken up. Campaigns are reguarly reviewed inline with current national issues:

 

anxious annie

Registered User
Jan 2, 2019
794
0
On BBC Breakfast this morning Dan Walker was questioning Helen Whately and asking if visits to care homes could go ahead now that residents have received their first jab, and if family wore ppe and were tested, but the answer was it's still not safe. The residents will not have "protection" yet, fair point as it takes 3 weeks after the jab for this. I would hope tho that there may be guidance out mid February as they will have this good protection by then! I doubt this will happen, the goal posts keep moving!
Dan also mentioned that Alzheimer's society had said it would be wrong to have to wait a further 12 weeks until 2nd jabs have been administered before visits are allowed. I quite agree, and I am worried that we will have to wait until then, and who knows if it will be even worse and we have to wait until family have the 2nd jab? I can quite easily see the goal posts being moved even further away until Summer/Autumn.
Still a very depressing situation!
I phoned mum's care home to see if the residents were out of "solitary confinement" due to 2 staff members having tested positive , but they have 1 more day to go. This is the 3rd time since November, and I can see it happening again and again. The manager says she understands how I feel not being able to see mum and have contact as she is missing seeing her grandson as hasn't seem him since Christmas! I couldn't believe she thought we were experiencing the same loss, and told her to try being in this situation for almost a year!
 

Kellyr

Registered User
Aug 8, 2020
174
0
On BBC Breakfast this morning Dan Walker was questioning Helen Whately and asking if visits to care homes could go ahead now that residents have received their first jab, and if family wore ppe and were tested, but the answer was it's still not safe. The residents will not have "protection" yet, fair point as it takes 3 weeks after the jab for this. I would hope tho that there may be guidance out mid February as they will have this good protection by then! I doubt this will happen, the goal posts keep moving!
Dan also mentioned that Alzheimer's society had said it would be wrong to have to wait a further 12 weeks until 2nd jabs have been administered before visits are allowed. I quite agree, and I am worried that we will have to wait until then, and who knows if it will be even worse and we have to wait until family have the 2nd jab? I can quite easily see the goal posts being moved even further away until Summer/Autumn.
Still a very depressing situation!
I phoned mum's care home to see if the residents were out of "solitary confinement" due to 2 staff members having tested positive , but they have 1 more day to go. This is the 3rd time since November, and I can see it happening again and again. The manager says she understands how I feel not being able to see mum and have contact as she is missing seeing her grandson as hasn't seem him since Christmas! I couldn't believe she thought we were experiencing the same loss, and told her to try being in this situation for almost a year!
@anxious annie people in the care sector always now have their own tales of woe to diminish what we're feeling. The manager of my Mums home said she was worse off than me as she wasnt able to see her grandkids at the weekends any more! Someone else said they hadnt seen their granny for 6 months but I bet they hardly saw her anyway! For most of these people its still essentially a choice not to see people but for us its inflicted by others and its a whole different ballgame. I guess the only hope now is if R4R get some traction re the essential family carer thing. If theres any justice, this will happen!
 

Lone Wolf

Registered User
Sep 20, 2020
126
0
On BBC Breakfast this morning Dan Walker was questioning Helen Whately and asking if visits to care homes could go ahead now that residents have received their first jab, and if family wore ppe and were tested, but the answer was it's still not safe. The residents will not have "protection" yet, fair point as it takes 3 weeks after the jab for this. I would hope tho that there may be guidance out mid February as they will have this good protection by then! I doubt this will happen, the goal posts keep moving!
Dan also mentioned that Alzheimer's society had said it would be wrong to have to wait a further 12 weeks until 2nd jabs have been administered before visits are allowed. I quite agree, and I am worried that we will have to wait until then, and who knows if it will be even worse and we have to wait until family have the 2nd jab? I can quite easily see the goal posts being moved even further away until Summer/Autumn.
Still a very depressing situation!
I phoned mum's care home to see if the residents were out of "solitary confinement" due to 2 staff members having tested positive , but they have 1 more day to go. This is the 3rd time since November, and I can see it happening again and again. The manager says she understands how I feel not being able to see mum and have contact as she is missing seeing her grandson as hasn't seem him since Christmas! I couldn't believe she thought we were experiencing the same loss, and told her to try being in this situation for almost a year!
It is so disheartening anxious annie that the originators and appliers of this policy of solitary confinement cannot understand how immensely upsetting & distressing this policy of solitary confinement is to dementia sufferers and their family members who have been prevented from maintaining their emotional connections in normal human ways and which provide the commonly only meaningful quality of life for sufferers.
 

Bikerbeth

Registered User
Feb 11, 2019
1,896
0
Bedford
Unfortunately I tend to agree with you @anxious annie and that the goal posts will keep moving and the date will keep moving backwards. Throw in different tiers and I don’t see any consistency in approach.
Mum’s care home announced all residents and those staff who wanted it were vaccinated but never said how many staff did not participate. I totally appreciate there are some good reasons but I found it scary to read that 1/5th of Care Workers had declined to be vaccinated.
 

anxious annie

Registered User
Jan 2, 2019
794
0
I think we're all experiencing the same frustration @Bikerbeth @Lone Wolf @Kellyr. I hope something will come of the human rights push by Harriet Harman for Essential Family Carer legislation. I have been emailing my MP and mum's MP to ask for their support in parliament for this. Mum's MP has replied saying he'll bring my suggestions up with his ministerial colleagues. I hope this won't just mean an email to Helen W as from her generic responses that will be a complete waste of time. At least he replied to me whereas my own MP just ignores my correspondence and doesn't return phone calls.
 

Caro62

New member
Feb 5, 2021
1
0
On BBC Breakfast this morning Dan Walker was questioning Helen Whately and asking if visits to care homes could go ahead now that residents have received their first jab, and if family wore ppe and were tested, but the answer was it's still not safe. The residents will not have "protection" yet, fair point as it takes 3 weeks after the jab for this. I would hope tho that there may be guidance out mid February as they will have this good protection by then! I doubt this will happen, the goal posts keep moving!
Dan also mentioned that Alzheimer's society had said it would be wrong to have to wait a further 12 weeks until 2nd jabs have been administered before visits are allowed. I quite agree, and I am worried that we will have to wait until then, and who knows if it will be even worse and we have to wait until family have the 2nd jab? I can quite easily see the goal posts being moved even further away until Summer/Autumn.
Still a very depressing situation!
I phoned mum's care home to see if the residents were out of "solitary confinement" due to 2 staff members having tested positive , but they have 1 more day to go. This is the 3rd time since November, and I can see it happening again and again. The manager says she understands how I feel not being able to see mum and have contact as she is missing seeing her grandson as hasn't seem him since Christmas! I couldn't believe she thought we were experiencing the same loss, and told her to try being in this situation for almost a year!
It is heartbreaking to read the accounts on this thread of those who haven't seen family for months.
I took a 12 month career break last April to come and help dad care for my mum.
Despite mum deteriorating over the last year, we enjoyed some lovely times, before finally acknowledging in January that we couldn't manage anymore.
We were fortunate that a room came up at our 1st choice home and mum moved in 2 weeks ago.
But the guilt and upset is awful.
Due to the lockdown, we've never seen inside the home apart from by video call, the home has had an outbreak of covid discovered the day after mum moved in (tests done the day before she joined), we've had 2 window visits which are useless because her hearing aids have gone missing, plus it's too cold for my dad to be standing outside, and residents are being 'encouraged' to stay in their rooms.
Dad and I feel distraut that mum is now surrounded by masked strangers, hardly gets to see us (she often didn't recognise us when she was at home) and we have no prospect of any meaningful contact with her.
We were due a video call today (mum has no clue about these but at least we can see her) but the staff forgot.
I'm struggling to sleep at night - I know we couldn't keep mum at home safely any longer but I can't imagine how she must be feeling.
Any advice from others who have had admissions during lockdown?
 

Louise7

Volunteer Host
Mar 25, 2016
2,989
0
Hello @Caro62 welcome to DTP, you'll find this a friendly and supportive group. You are right, the current position regarding care home visits is heartbreaking. I haven't seen my mum in over 3 months now, not even through a window or via video, but am maintaining some element of contact with her by regularly sending in cards and small gifts that I know she will like such as chocolate and items of clothing. Maybe that is something that you can try, although it obviously isn't a replacement for having face to face contact I like to think that mum will somehow know that she hasn't been forgotten by the family. I can understand your concerns about the covid outbreak in the home, and residents being encouraged to stay in their rooms for infection control purposes, and understandably this will be placing further pressure on staff who are likely to be feeling very stressed. My mum's home has had several outbreaks, and as with your mum, video calls didn't work well. The home are however providing me with photos now and again - perhaps that is something that your mum's home could do if you ask?

It is natural to feel guilt about placing someone in a home but you have done so because you couldn't keep your mum safe at home any longer. She has only been in the home 2 weeks so it will take time for both her and the family to come to terms and adjust to the new situation, and understandably you and your dad will be feeling a whole range of different emotions. It may be helpful for you to speak to the manager about how your mum is settling in and interacting with the care staff/other residents. At the start of the pandemic my mum undoubtedly would have found the fact that everyone was suddenly wearing masks strange, but she seems to have quickly accepted the situation and didn't seem bothered by masks during the occasions when I was able to visit her whilst wearing one. Vaccinations and the lowering of covid infection rates bring some hope that the visiting position in care homes may change. As you can see from the link posted above, pressure is being placed to ensure that care home visiting is seen as a priority when restrictions are reviewed, plus the Human Rights Committee are also lobbying for a change in legislation to enable a family member to be considered as an essential carer:

 

Kellyr

Registered User
Aug 8, 2020
174
0
@Caro62 really sorry youre going through this but its in line with what many of us have been experiencing, in my case for 10 months...its very distressing. Ive tried to channel some energy into writing to mine and my Mums mps and doing other bits and bobs to try and move the conversation on contact for relatives forward. Its been incredibly hard going but I urge you to try and do something pro active. If youre on Facebook, theres an amazing group called Rights4Residents who have been campaigning tirelessly on this issue. You can keep updated on whats happening with the legislation etc and it does help a little, to know youre not alone...😼
 

anxious annie

Registered User
Jan 2, 2019
794
0
Hi @Caro62 it's so hard for you and your dad to be in this situation. @Louise7 has given some good suggestions on how to keep in touch whilst there's no indoor visits. If you are on Facebook you could ask if the home has a Facebook group, my mum's have one of these and the home posts photos and video clips so I can see what mum is doing. As @Kellyr has suggested you could join campaign groups for support, and they also have template letters that you can send to Local Authority, MP etc. Rights for Residents is really helpful, as is another group John's Campaign.
Now that residents have had their vaccinations we must surely be closer to indoor visits, as you have experienced these window visits aren't the best for the resident, or the family standing out in the cold.
I've just signed the letter that @Palerider has posted, the more people who sign this the better.
@Palerider , thanks for posting this, I'm no good with technology but if you belong to Rights for Residents or John's Campaign please would you be able to post on there as I am sure many others would want to sign
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,437
0
North West
I've just signed the letter that @Palerider has posted, the more people who sign this the better.
@Palerider , thanks for posting this, I'm no good with technology but if you belong to Rights for Residents or John's Campaign please would you be able to post on there as I am sure many others would want to sign

I will post it on the respective forums subject to being allowed by the forum admins -I am sure RFR won't object.

We are very close now to finalising what has been a case of moving mountains and I am hopeful after a lot of work by many, including myself that the law will soon be changed, to make make blanket bans on visiting in care homes illegal.

Its been nearly twelve months since I have been able to visit my mum in her care home. In that time I have only seen her in times of despair when she has been taken to hospital and I have been finally allowed to see her and be with her before being returned to her care home.

No one takes the decision lightly to place a loved one into a care home, and the last thing we expected was to be denied the one thing left, and the only thing that actually matters -to be their advocate, their main carer and someone that can guide them through this last stage of their lives with love and compassion
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,437
0
North West

Thanks @Shedrech

I am aware of these forums on TP, but I think so many people on this forum are emotionally frazzled to be able to join in and campaign and that's one of the reasons why I don't push this too hard on TP -there are days when even I feel exhausted by all the other emotions and feelings I encounter.

I have however asked Diane at Rights for Residents to post this AS campaign flyer that asks people to write to their MP for an exit strategy from lockdown for care home residents. Much of my time at the moment is taken up with that campaign and also being actively involved in challenging our local public health officials and local authority. Our MP is now closely monitoring the local situation in the area where my mum is a care home resident -our dialogue contnues away from TP