Hello everyone, I hope you are all still well and continuing to weather this storm.

We have been planning how we will restart visiting at St Omer, and we are now in a position to share these with you; they comprise both short and medium term plans.

We had hoped that we could start visits within St Omer in the near future, but I expect you will agree that there are still far too many uncertainties and differing scientific opinions to mean that this is a safe and sustainable objective at present.

We expect you have read and heard of the deaths that some care and nursing homes have had both nationally and locally when COVID-19 manages to break their bio-security, and we hope that you agree with us that we must do everything in our power to continue to prevent this.

In the short term we will be;

  • Erecting a temporary gazebo on the decking to enable one-to-one visiting to take place. This will happen this coming week and we will contact you as soon as it is in place and we are happy that we have created a safe environment for your relative, yourself and our staff. Once this is in place;
    • We will have a schedule of half hour visiting slots from 10:00 to 12:00 and 14:00 to 16:00 where,
    • ONE person may visit, they will be required to provide and wear a face mask and respect social distancing (which is still 2m at present in our case). For the time being that person should remain the same (i.e. not cycling through a family group) until restrictions ease further.
    • That person will be required to sign a declaration each time that they visit to confirm that they have had no persistent cough, high temperature or contact with anyone who has COVID-19 or is isolating pending a COVID test.
    • That person must consent to have their temperature being taken prior to meeting their relative.
    • Each Resident will not have more than two visits each week (to allow each Resident a fair number of visits and enable staff to sanitise the area between visits).
    • There will be a fifteen minute break between each visit to allow for sanitising and to ensure that we maintain separation between visitors.

In the medium term (we are hoping within the next two months);

  • We plan to purchase and have installed a Visiting Pod in the front garden in front of the office to provide a more permanent solution.

None of us know how long this pandemic might last, but we are assuming that there is likely to be some form of second spike in infections and we want a solution that might take us through that period and until some more long term treatment (such as a vaccination) is universally available. We think it quite possible that this might not be until this time next year.

We appreciate that the above comprises a lot of rules; we really have tried to keep these to a minimum.

Please do respect these rules and our staff in ensuring that we can maintain this regime.

As before if you have any questions, worries or concerns do please email me back and I will do my best to address them.

With kind regards