House update: Covid-19

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COVID-19 – How we’re keeping you safe

We know how hard it is for our families at the best of the times when their child is in hospital and the current pandemic is only adding to the distress and uncertainty they are experiencing.

However, we want to reassure new families about all the extra health and safety measures we are taking at the House to make sure everyone feels safe and secure during their stay with us. We hope the following detailed update answers any questions you might have and if you have any further concerns please don’t hesitate to give us a call or email us.

Cash/Cards – We are minimising cash-handling and we would therefore be grateful if any payments could be made by card wherever possible.

Cleaning bedrooms – It is your responsibility to clean your bedroom and en-suite bathroom. We do not provide cleaning products but we do provide cleaning equipment which will be left ready for you in your bedroom.

Face coverings – These must be worn by everyone in the House. We appreciate that it is not mandatory for children under 12 to wear face coverings but if some are able to this would be welcomed. Single use face coverings can be provided should you need them.

Personal Hygiene – We cannot stress enough the importance of regular hand washing and use of hand sanitiser. There are various dispensing units throughout the House. Toiletries are also provided in your en-suite bathroom and we’ll be happy to provide you with more if you need them.

Laundry facilities – Washing machines and tumble driers are available for use. We are currently providing complimentary laundry tokens to operate them, as well as bio or non-bio washing pods. Please ask a member of staff at reception who will be happy to hand them over to you. A booking system is in operation for the laundry with only one family permitted at any one time. We request that disposable gloves are used whilst in the laundry and binned after each use. We have also provided anti-bacterial wipes and request that machines are wiped down after use.

Lounges and library – We are sorry that these rooms are out of use at the moment. There are TVs in each bedroom as well as tea/coffee making facilities so we hope you will manage some ‘down time’ in the comfort and safety of your bedroom.

Kitchen – Our large open plan dining kitchen has been altered and we have created 6 kitchen ‘pods’ which are individually screened off. A table and chairs have been assigned to each pod. At check-in, you will be allocated 2 kitchen pods to choose from whenever you wish to use the kitchen – there is a booking system in operation for each of these and pods should be wiped down after use. To minimise sharing, each room has been provided with their own crockery, cutlery, glassware and cleaning equipment in their kitchen locker. Cookware and food prep items are currently still shared-use and should be washed, dried and returned to the kitchen pod after use.

Overnight stays away – We understand there may be occasions where you need to step away. However, you will have to speak to House staff to discuss your circumstances to see if we can accommodate this and keep your room. As you will understand we have to limit wider social interactions beyond the ‘bubble’ of the House and the Hospital. NB All referrals to the House are managed by the Hospital. We do not facilitate any direct bookings.

Social distancing –There are signs throughout the House to remind everyone to keep a social distance of 2 metres from each other.

Temperature checks – Your temperature will be taken automatically by our fixed thermal camera on entering the House as any signs of a fever are one of the main symptoms of the COVID-19 virus. As a back-up to the fixed thermal camera we have a hand-held thermal camera, when in use we will ask to take your temperature on a daily basis.

People may register a high temperature for non-COVID reasons so if anyone does have a high result, we will always retest after a brief rest period. If on retesting you continue to register a high temperature, we will ask you to step away from the House until after your symptoms have ceased and you have recorded a negative COVID-19 test. If anyone else is sharing your room at the House, they too will need to step away. It is not permitted for anyone to self-isolate at the House.

Travel – We respectfully ask that any travel outwith the Hospital is kept to a minimum. There is free car parking at the House which is available to you for the duration of your stay.

Visitors – Sadly, until further notice we cannot allow visitors as we need to minimise the amount of movement around our corridors and mitigate the risk of anyone bringing the virus into the House.

Staff – Are subject to the same temperature and wellness checks, social distancing, wearing of face coverings and enhanced hygiene levels as families. We are still providing 24 hour staffing but are operating with a reduced number of people in the House to reduce contact.

Thank you for your assistance in helping us support everyone who is staying and working at the House during these worrying times. The warmth and comfort of our House is more important than ever and we hope these measures reassure you of a safe and welcoming stay.

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