Relaxed care home rules permit residents out-of-home visits without the need to isolate

Residents can visit a friend or family member’s garden, or go on walks in places such as parks, public gardens and beaches.

Chloe Dawson
1 May 2021
Care home elderly resident

New rules mean residents won’t have to self-isolate on their return.

Care home residents will be able to participate in more out-of-home visits without having to isolate on their return, the government has announced today.

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From Tuesday 4 May, residents will be able to leave their care homes to visit a friend or family member’s garden, or go on walks in places such as parks, public gardens and beaches.

They will not have to self-isolate when they return.

Previously residents were required to self-isolate for 14 days prior to being reintegrated with other residents in the care home.

Residents must be accompanied by either a care worker, or nominated visitor, and follow the government guidelines of washing hands regularly, keeping social distance, and remaining outside.

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A welcomed change.

Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care, Professor Deborah Sturdy, said; “The pandemic has been so incredibly challenging for those living in care homes, and our social care workforce have done a heroic job of keeping their residents safe and supported.

“I know this change to the guidance will be hugely welcomed by many and give so many the chance to safely leave their home.

Minister for Care, Helen Whately added; “I know residents and their families have found the restrictions on trips out of care homes incredibly difficult. This is one more step towards getting back to normal, while protecting care homes from the continued risk of COVID-19.

“As part of this interim update before the next stage of the roadmap, care home residents will be able to leave to spend time outdoors. I know this has been long awaited for those who haven’t had a chance to enjoy trips out. I look forward to encouraging more visiting and trips out in future as we turn the tide on this cruel virus.”

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