Issue 14 - Published Monday 29th June 2020

Lench's Trust Weekly Coronavirus Update

Latest Update on the Pandemic

As we approach 4th July ("Independence Day" when the pubs, bars, restaurants and other venues reopen) it us worth reflecting on this quote from a scientist on the government's advisory group SAGE only last week:

"After all, the virus hasn't gone away, infection levels are roughly where they were shortly before lockdown, and if we return to business as usual we will rapidly waste all the sacrifices of the last three months."

Therefore, the Government's website still advocates the following:

Stay Alert: We can all help control the virus if we all stay alert. This means you must:

  • Stay at home as much as possible;
  • Work from home if you can;
  • Limit contact with other people;
  • Keep your distance if you go out (2 metres apart where possible);
  • Wash you hands regularly;
  • Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Lench's Trust will continue to interpret and adapt these guidelines as appropriate for both its settings (sheltered accommodation or extracare) and its resources, and details of the Trust's specific measures and found further down this newsletter. If you are unsure how those apply to your scheme please ask the Scheme Manager or Head Office.

Please stay safe in your community & help us protect you!

Lench's Trust Staffing Arrangements

  • All communal areas remain closed, including the laundries, until further notice;
  • Staff attend the sites only minimum hours to reduce exposure and to protect both staff and residents:
    • Scheme Managers on site only to do call around and check the residents; wellbeing;
    • Maintenance Staff have been redeployed to distribute the shopping at Lench's Close 7 William Lench Court, collect rubbish and distribute the post. They are starting to look after the grounds now that the residents are out & about;
    • Maintenance staff and trusted contractors on standby for essential maintenance work;
    • Head Office staff working both at home or in the office;
    • Staff wearing PPE at all time.

Our best wishes to Mrs Janet Froggatt and Mrs Mary O'Sullivan at William Lench Court, Mrs Gillian Parfitt and Mr David Ward at Lench's Close, and to Dawn Manning at Head Office, who will be celebrating their birthday this week.

It may be hard to believe that our last social gathering together was on Founder's Day on 11th March before the country entered into a forced lockdown due to the pandemic. As already mentioned in previous newsletters we are entering a difficult period with lockdown "fatigue", risks associated to the uplifting of many restrictions (too quickly, too soon?), warm weather which entices us to go out more, and , possibly more damaging to our morale, the threat of new, localised lockdowns as the rate of infections remains dangerously high.

With all this in mind it is more important than ever to look after our mental and physical wellbeing, and to look after each other:

  • Take care of your mind as well as your body if you are staying at home or if you are shielding because of the coronavirus;
  • You may feel bored, frustrated or lonely. You may also be low, worried or anxious, or concerned about your finances, your health or those close to you. It is important to remember that it is OK to feel this way - please do share your feelings with someone close or, if you prefer, contact one of the organisations listed below for help;
  • Stay connected with others - think about how you can stay in touch with friends and family - by phone, messaging, video calls or social media;
  • Look after your body: try to eat healthy (it can be so easy to fall into unhealthy patterns of behaviour), drink enough water and exercise regularly by going for a walk;
  • Concern about the coronavirus is perfectly normal. However try to focus on the things YOU can control, such as how you act, who you speak to and where you get your information from;
  • Keep you mind active: read, write, play games, do crosswords, finish jigsaws, or try drawing and painting.

Other Useful Contacts:

Coronavirus Measures

Lench's Trust Specific Measures

  1. All communal areas closed as we would not be able to maintain safe physical distancing;
  2. All activities cancelled until further notice;
  3. Resident laundries closed to avoid cross contamination - laundry done by staff when requested by residents;
  4. No outside visitors allowed in communal areas or in residents' apartments, including cleaners, deliveries, postmen, mobile hairdressers etc. Due to the nature of these jobs they would be visiting multiple places and there would be a risk of cross contamination;
  5. When residents are unable to do their own shopping, this is done either by families or friends (and delivered to the Schemes by 11.30 at the latest) or by a member of staff. [please note that this can be done only Monday to Friday from now on];
  6. Only approved key workers allowed in residents' apartment. An authorisation can be applied for and the key worker will be given a permit to enter;
  7. Only 1 outside visitor allowed to meet with residents on the Trust's premises by prior arrangement - this is to avoid multiple visitors and households meeting and mixing involuntarily;
  8. All staff wearing the level of PPE appropriate to their job, with the wearing of a mask as a minimum. Residents are asked to respect the staff's protective space and not to approach without a mask and not closer than 2 metres (6ft)
  9. Staff working reduced hours on site to minimise exposure to risk: Scheme Managers on site only in the mornings (out of hours calls apply afterwards), Maintenance Team on call when not on duty for specific tasks and Head Office team working on a rota basis.

Government's Guidelines

  1. Physical distancing of 2m (6ft) where possible;
  2. If closer than 2m please wear a mask and/or avoid physical contact;
  3. No gatherings indoors and limited to no more than 10 people outdoors;
  4. No mixing of household indoors, unless you create a "support bubble" (see below explanation of a Support Bubble);
  5. Stay sheltered if you have an underlining condition putting you at a higher risk;
  6. Self-isolate if you have the symptoms for coronavirus (and do inform us)

What exactly is a support bubble?

Forming this support bubble means you effectively become one household - you can act as if you all lived together. This means you can do things such as go round to their house, stay the night and travel together in private vehicles.

But once you've formed your support bubble, you can't change who's in it. You also can't go into the homes of anyone outside your support bubble - unless it's in line with the wider guidance, which includes accessing a garden or other outdoor space.

Who can I form a Support bubble with?

For two households to form a support bubble, at least on of the households must be a single adult household - either an adult living alone or a single parent with children under the age of 18 living with them. The other household can be any size.

But there are some things to consider before you decide to form a support bubble:

  • You can travel to and from another household in your support bubble, but it's still best to avoid public transport. It might therefore be easier to be in a support bubble with a household local to you.
  • The more people you spend time with, the higher the risk of infection from coronavirus. So while there are no rules on the size of the household you can join up with, it is safer to make a support bubble with a smaller group of people.
  • Before you form your support bubble,think about ant potential risks to your health. For example, is there anyone in certain households that's more exposed to the virus, such as healthcare workers?

Remember - if one person within the support bubble develops the symptoms for coronavirus ALL MUST SELF ISOLATE FOR 14 DAYS!

Download Issue 14 - HERE