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Update on Coronavirus

Kirkwood is playing a key part in the fight against coronavirus across Kirklees. We are working day and night to offer critical support to the healthcare sector at this difficult time, making sure that the most vulnerable people in our local communities continue to receive the very best, compassionate care.

We’re working hard to provide essential care for the people of Kirklees

Throughout the coronavirus crisis, our Kirkwood Nurses are working out in your local community to support patients in their own homes across Kirklees. And our In-Patient Unit nurses, doctors and healthcare professionals are working 24 hours a day to make sure the patients and families in our care receive the very best care.

 

Changing the way we provide services to keep people safe

Due to the increasing numbers of people affected by the coronavirus pandemic in Kirklees, we have had to make some really difficult decision about some of our services.

We have now suspended a number of services, including those which involve public gatherings of patients, carers, family members and volunteers – this includes our Support & Therapy and Bereavement Drop-In services.

To make it easy to find out how our services have changed due to the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve added the latest updates about individual services to the drop down list below. Simply click on the area you want to find information about and it will display on the screen.

We’ve worked hard over the past few weeks to minimise the number of people who need to visit or work at the main hospice site. As a result, many of our teams are now working from home, staying safe and helping to protect the most vulnerable people in our care. We've said a temporary farewell to many of our wonderful volunteers over the past few weeks to keep everyone safe. We’re keeping in touch and we're looking forward to seeing them again in the near future.

These changes have been made in order to protect our vulnerable patients, as well as our nurses, doctors and the wider healthcare team. Over the coming days and weeks we may need to make more changes to keep everyone as safe as possible. Please keep checking back if you are planning to use any of our services or hoping to visit the hospice.

 

If you are feeling unwell, please do not visit the hospice

If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), you must stay at home (self-isolate) and get a test.

The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • A high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

Most people with coronavirus have at least one of these symptoms.

If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus:

This information was updated on: Saturday 1st August 2020

Our In-Patient Unit – Information for Visitors Fallback

We’ve been listening carefully to advice from the government and acknowledge the further restrictions in Kirklees. We continue to closely follow the government's recommendations to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission to our patients, who are most vulnerable, visitors and our employees.

For these reasons we made the difficult decision to close the hospice to visitors back in April. However, we did make changes and following the latest advice on 31st July 2020, we have decided we do not need to make further changes to our current visitors guidance:

We are able to accommodate daily one hour visits. All patient visits should be planned in advance, with up to two visitors able to attend. Named visitors are not changeable and must remain the same for the duration of admission. Members of the same household may visit the hospice together, but we ask those living in different households to visit separately. Visits will be arranged at the start of each week by a member of the Kirkwood team, who will telephone you to arrange a suitable day and time for your visits.

When visiting the In-Patient Unit, we encourage the use of outdoor space such as our garden and bedside terraced area.

On each visit, you will be asked to use alcohol based hand gel and put on an apron, gloves and a mask prior to entering the In-Patient Unit. Your mask must only be removed as you leave the reception area - please place in the bin provided and gel your hands.

You will also be asked some screening questions and if it is identified that either yourself or a member of your household has symptoms of COVID-19 you will not be permitted entry into the building.

We ask that you remain socially distanced from your loved one and others during your visit as per national guidance and that you remain in designated areas for the duration of your visit unless asked by a member of the team to leave (they will direct you to an area where you can wait) should they need to attend your loved one.

Employees will be wearing the appropriate PPE as outlined in the national guidance during this time.

Those wishing to visit patients who are in the last few days or hours of life

Visits will be up to four hours, although our team will use their discretion if a patient is in the last few hours of life.

If a patient is expected to die imminently, our team will call in two family members (this may be extended to other key family members and will be agreed by the senior Nurse and Doctor).

Unfortunately, overnight stays are not permitted at this time.

Exceptions

We understand that every patient’s circumstances are different and, where appropriate, we may be able to make exceptions to our guidance on visiting the In-Patient Unit.

These exceptions may include instances where a patient is at greater risk of distress, such as those with learning difficulties, language difficulties or dementia. We may also make exceptions if our team believes that a patient is experiencing significant psychological distress.

General Information for those wishing to visit a patient

Unfortunately, we aren’t able to allow children under the age of 16 to make visits at the moment (exceptions may be made for those wishing to visit a patient in the last few days or hours of life).

We continue to advise against anyone who is immunocompromised visiting the In-Patient Unit.

All visitors to the In-Patient Unit will be verbally screened to check that they do not have symptoms associated with Covid-19. These symptoms include a new persistent cough, higher than normal temperature and loss of taste/smell. We will also ask if you have had any contact with people known or suspected to have Covid-19.

We will also ask you to follow our strict hand hygiene procedures and follow our guidelines on the use PPE throughout your visit, as directed by the Kirkwood team.

We know that not being able to visit as often as usual will be difficult for many of you. We hope you understand that we have not taken the decision to restrict visitors to the hospice lightly. Our priority is to make sure our patients and those looking after them are protected as much as possible, and we really appreciate your understanding.

If you or a family member is due to be admitted to our In-Patient Unit, we encourage you organise some form of communication to keep you connected during your stay. This could be via WhatsApp, Facetime or the use of a mobile phone.

We also have devices available on the In-Patient Unit to help people stay in touch with loved ones.

Please do not visit the hospice if you are feeling unwell

If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), you must stay at home (self-isolate) and get a test.

The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • A high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

Most people with coronavirus have at least one of these symptoms.

What to do if you have symptoms

If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus:

Please note that this guidance is subject to change and will be regularly reviewed.

Care in people’s own homes – Our Community Palliative Care service Fallback

Our team of specialist Kirkwood Nurses are continuing to support patients across Kirklees and are available 7 days a week. They will be keeping in close contact with patients by telephone and via video consultation. Home visits will only take place if there needed urgently. If you have any queries, please contact the team on: 01484 557910

Our Support & Therapy Service Fallback

Unfortunately our Support & Therapy services, including Drop-In days held in our Support & Therapy Centre, pre-arranged courses, group meetings and all Complementary Therapies were suspended on Monday 16th March. Our teams are working hard to make sure we keep in touch with patients whilst we’re not able to welcome them to Kirkwood in person.

Bereavement and Counselling – Our Family Care Team Fallback

To make sure we keep as many people safe as possible, we made the decision to cancel all one-to-one counselling sessions due to take place at Kirkwood Hospice from Monday 16th March. Our fortnightly Bereavement Drop-In sessions, normally held in the Support & Therapy Centre have also been cancelled for the foreseeable future.

The Family Care Team are now providing a telephone counselling service. If you would like to speak to us about making a telephone appointment, please call the team on: 01484 557908

Care Co-ordination and our 24/7 Clinical Advice Line Fallback

To support our Community Palliative Care Team we have a Care Co-ordination service. This service helps to co-ordinate the needs of our patients and support them with additional services they may need. The team are also a point of contact for you. We know that many of our patients are vulnerable and shielding at the moment, so in anticipation of the increased support our patients will need at this time we have increased the number of people working in this service.

Our Clinical Advice Line is available 24/7 to provide help and support whenever it is needed. If you need advice or support at any time, please call: 01484 557910

How are we making sure we're Covid-19 compliant? Fallback

At Kirkwood, we are committed to ensuring the safety of our patients, visitors, employees, volunteers and members of the public across both the Hospice site and our retail shops. We are fully compliant with all government advice and regulations, and we're actively monitoring guidance so we can implement changes effectively.
 
We have undertaken Risk Assessments for each of our shops, and for various activity at the Hospice, including the use of volunteers. Where possible, non-clinical employees are working from home indefinitely with ongoing support from their line managers. Employees that are required to work at the Hospice are adhering to social distancing where appropriate and we have introduced social distancing  signage and extra hand washing points. We have also introduced social distancing signage, one way systems and extra hand washing points in all of our shops.

Need clinical advice?
Call our advice line on:

01484 557910

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