Turning care homes to isolation centres: staff moving into care homes to minimize the risk of COVID-19 outbreaks (Spain and UK)

There are examples from Spain and the UK of staff “locking in” care homes to live with the residents, in order to reduce the risk of them infecting vulnerable residents, but also to reduce concerns of the staff about taking the virus back to their families.

The Guardian newspaper reports on a care home for people living with dementia, Bridgedale House (Sheffield) where a live-in team formed of care workers, a chef and a domestic workers have moved in for at least two weeks. Another team is ready to take over when they are called.


This is also happening in various regions in Spain, El Pais newspaper reports on two private care homes in Catalonia.

In one of them, in Lleida, this was a decision of the staff, in response to the alarming reports from other care homes in Spain. It is a large home, with 89 residents and the team of 24 are working in 7 hour shifts (with two people awake at night) Even the director of the centre has moved in, the team include a variety of job roles: psychology, physiotherapy, maintenance, cleaning, care assistants and nursing… but in practice they are all doing whatever is needed. They report having enough protection equipment and are have strict disinfection procedures for the supplies that come from outside.

The Government is also taking over care homes in distress due to staff shortages, for example one in Valls (Tarragona): a private home of 62 places with at least 8 residents with COVID-19, half of the staff had become unwell.

In Spanish: https://elpais.com/sociedad/2020-03-25/encerrados-en-la-residencia-con-los-abuelos.html

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