Care Home Buddy Bubbles

Residents in care homes are largely treated as single person households, although with more practical limits on their socially distanced 'socialising'. But currently have No extended household option. Covid-19 has been 'eradicated' INSIDE most care homes, the risk is importation from OUTSIDE. Allowing each resident to 'buddy', or pair, with another resident, of their choice, without social distancing, would hugely improve their quality of life, but with very little infection risk. One could visit the other's room for a few hours each day, allowing normal conversation, hugging, holding hands, sharing card games etc. This would overcome the communication difficulties of deafness, dementia, lack of familiarity with technology and poor eyesight which turn social distancing into COMPLETE isolation for typical care home residents. And would in some measure compensate for the loss of visitors and communal socialising within the homes.

Why the contribution is important

Many of these residents have been deprived of ANY natural, physical human interaction for over six months, out of an average remaining life expectancy (in the absence of coronavirus) of less than two years. An effective, safe, licenced, scaled up, bought, distributed, and administered vaccine will likely take another twelve to eighteen months to complete. It is time to recognise that the current care home generation deserve better than a life sentence of solitary confinement. What would be the 'inconvenience' of social distancing to younger people, is MUCH worse for care home residents: - No other household members in single-room care home settings - No freedom to travel outside the care home setting, eg for a walk - Limited ability with video-link, social media, internet, email, or even phone technology - Impaired vision for small screens, small print or people over two metres away - Impaired hearing for people over two metres away, with lip reading further hampered by face coverings - Impaired cognition/memory making non-verbal, including physical, communication proportionately more important - Impaired cognition/memory affecting mental ability to rationalise and adapt to a whole 'new normal' There is a REASON why even prisons typically have twin cells rather than single person cells..

by MooritCheviot on October 05, 2020 at 10:23PM

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