COVID-19 Information for Home Care Clients, Families and Caregivers
In an effort to reduce community transmission of COVID-19, we are reviewing some of our services to determine visits that can be safely postponed or modified during this unprecedented time. While frequency of service delivery may change, home care will continue to provide in-home visits to all clients on a modified schedule during this time of disruption across our system.
The services to be rescheduled, or modified, include only those which would not create a serious and immediate risk of deterioration in our client's health status. An assessment will be made based on each individual client's needs and circumstances, and will vary by client. We would like to reinforce that this is a temporary situation, which will be re-evaluated as the pandemic evolves, or if an individual's condition or situation changes over time.
Home care coordinators have initiated discussions with some of you, our clients and their families and caregivers, to explore rescheduling visits, or reducing the frequency of in-person, in-home visits where feasible and where it's safe to do so. This includes providing the option of virtual visits when safe to do so, in order to decrease the number of health care providers attending to facilities, and your home.
We need to have these conversations for your safety and the safety of our staff; to conserve the supply of personal protective equipment, and to ensure staff time can be prioritized for services that cannot be postponed.
Please note: There has been some confusion around what this means for baths. To clarify, we recognize that bathing is a vital component of personal hygiene and is a part of a complete health care plan. The home care program's review of this service is NOT to discontinue support of baths but rather to review the possibility of reducing the frequency of baths where appropriate.
We acknowledge that navigating this is difficult for everyone, and we want to assure you that we are doing our part to adjust, plan and provide care as new information becomes available. Each client's care needs and supports are unique and we anticipate the solutions will be as well. We are having these discussions with each of you and your care providers, so we can provide the best possible, individualized care solutions.
The program has asked all case coordinators to review service plans based on the specific health needs of each client and the capacity of family or informal caregivers. This has been done in collaboration with clients and their families/caregivers. Plans are designed to ensure any adaptations to services will continue to support the health needs of clients as well as the safety of caregivers. The goal is to ensure significant health needs continue to be met while implementing back-up plans and/or virtual visits wherever possible. Not everyone is being contacted at this time, but you may be contacted in the future as the situation changes and as we continue to plan and prepare.
Families and caregivers are an essential element of the care continuum, and in these unprecedented times, they can be a critical link. One aspect of the Home Care program is to work in partnership with caregivers as much as possible. Families and caregivers that are providing care as a part of the backup plan at the request of home care have always been a part of the care plan. This has been part of the program expectations for many years. We will continue to collaborate with you on services you or your loved one receives.
You may receive follow up phone calls as we work to minimize the number of different health care providers providing care to you and others at your site. That may result in some changes to your current schedule.
We want to assure you that we are committed to do our best to support ongoing services,
Please continue to reach out to your community care coordinator, contact information is available here, and if you have any additional questions or concerns, contact WRHA Client Relations by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 204-926-7825.