At our dementia hubs in Devon, we strive to maintain individuals cognitive health, reduce deterioration and lighten the load for families and existing caregivers.
To be Covid safe and reassure families that it is safe to send their loved ones to our centre, we have outlined our new approach to dementia care.
Our model is different from the way that we worked in the past, to ensure we offer a higher quality, safer service, whilst providing improved dementia benefits.
Measures we have put in place to keep our members safe
At all times, the health and wellness of our staff and members is an absolute priority. To keep in line with the current government guidelines, we have put in place some changes to keep everyone reassured whilst they are attending our hubs and services.
Working in small groups and maintaining social distancing
Firstly, we have divided the Ness dementia hub into 3 smaller zones, all with separate entrance and exits. Each zone will be limited to 4 members and 1 member of staff to enable social distancing and create autonomous bubbles. The members and staff in each zone will not mix and will remain the same for each visit. The huge benefit to this is that we can offer a far more therapeutic relationship that really helps the individual build confidence, connections and improves their mental health.
After risk assessing both the space and all those who attend the hub it has been decided that while inside The Ness staff and members won’t be expected to use masks. This is due to the concern that masks can increase confusion & anxiety and the critical importance of compassionate and clear communication with those living with dementia. A mask places a barrier between the client and staff that can hinder the therapeutic relationship.
This has been very carefully considered and we felt that stringent cleaning, handwashing and social distancing is a far more effective barrier to the spread of any possible virus then the misuse of a face mask.
All PPE equipment will be used when using any vehicle, when outside The Ness, when in bathrooms and when we are unable to abide by social distancing. Masks, aprons and gloves will be available to staff if they do need to get close to a member to help them.
Excellent communication is critical to dementia day care and ensuring the safety of all our clients. Therefore The Ness Manager will create a daily log to report on the following:
- Any incidents related to COVID-19
- Any symptoms if they are noted in a member of staff or client
- Daily briefing with The Ness Leaders
- Ensure a cleaning register is completed daily
Other safety and hygiene measures include;
As well as social distancing and keeping good levels of communication with the families and clients, we will also be implementing the following safety and hygiene measures:
- All staff are vaccinated and boosted
- Staff will have daily temperature and wellness checks
- Arrival times will be staggered so that no zone arrives at the same time
- Each client will be required to thoroughly wash their hands before entering, and between each session
- All activities will be completed at a distance and following strict hand hygiene requirements
- The Ness transport systems will be limited and PPE will be worn at all times
- The centre and vehicles will adhere to strict, regular deep cleaning at the end of each session
If you or your loved one is not quite ready to commit to attending our dementia hub in person, we are still able to offer the same level of dementia care during our home enablement sessions.
We understand how important it is to continue social engagement, encourage external stimulation and practice cognitive therapies to retain memory abilities. This is especially important for those who suffer from memory problems like dementia.
Get in touch with The Ness Group
We hope this reassures families and commissioners that returning to The Ness service will be as safe as possible. We do however apologise if the new model creates any inconvenience.
We will be keeping a close eye on any new guidance, and will update our members and their families immediately if this leads to any changes that may affect them.
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