Care unit set up to support people awaiting a COVID-19 negative test result

May 5, 2020

Southend Care opens care unit in partnership with Southend-on-Sea Borough Council to support older people awaiting a COVID 19 negative test result.

Southend Care, a company wholly owned by the Council set up to deliver high quality care and support in Southend-on-Sea, is opening a COVID-19 Care Unit this week to provide residential care for older people who have recently been discharged from hospital following a COVID-19 test and are awaiting a negative test result.

Based at Southend Care’s existing premises at Priory House in Southend-on-Sea, the dedicated COVID-19 Care Unit will initially provide six assessment beds – with capacity to increase to 13 if needed – to support individuals for a short period before they can head home, return to their care home or go to another COVID-19 free care home. The daytime and night time service has been kept entirely separate from Southend Care’s main residential care unit at Priory House.

The COVID-19 Care Unit will be operated by an on-site team of dedicated carers and people will be looked after in separate rooms.

Jon Manzoni, Managing Director of Southend Care, said: “We’ve selected an experienced, compassionate team at the COVID-19 Care Unit to deliver dignified care to people in their own rooms. By continuing to keep people separate from each other we’ll support their pathway out of hospital, but at the same time help protect both them and our staff by maintaining isolation and reducing the risk of cross-contamination.”

The unit will be supported by district nurses, enhanced care home teams and the Council’s hospital social work team. The Pall Mall Surgery in Leigh-on-Sea, which is currently aligned with Priory House, will service the unit. Clinical support will be available should people’s health deteriorate.

The COVID-19 Care Unit will operate in line with national and local government guidance on care of people with suspected or actual COVID-19 status. It will also adhere to government guidance on use of personal protective equipment by health and social care workers. A review of the new unit will be carried out by Southend Care and Southend-on-Sea Borough Council in three months’ time.

Councillor Trevor Harp, Cabinet Member for Health & Adult Social Care, said: “Awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test is an understandably worrying time, so we’re working hard with Southend Care to make sure we’re offering the best support and service possible.

“As well as directly supporting people and their families, the work at the COVID-19 Care Unit at Priory House will benefit the wider care community in Southend-on-Sea by reducing the risk of COVID-19 spreading within care homes.”


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