Covid-19 Risk Assessment & Management of Service Provision Policy 

This policy has been written to cover the operational procedures necessary for Care in Hand to protect its service users and staff from the risks presented by coronavirus (Covid-19) infection.

It includes:

  • information provision
  • travel requirements
  • infection control and prevention procedures
  • safeguarding
  • mental capacity
  • staff health and social distancing
  • personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • staff recruitment
  • induction and training
  • self-isolating service users
  • business continuity procedures
  • pandemic recovery planning.

What is Coronavirus?

The World Health Organisation defines coronaviruses as a family of viruses that cause infectious illness ranging from very mild to very severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). Covid-19 is a new strain which originated in China at the end of 2019. It has since spread worldwide, initiating a global pandemic public health emergency.

How is Coronavirus Spread?

People can catch Covid-19 from others who have the virus.

It is understood that the virus is highly infectious and moves from person to person in droplets from the nose or mouth which are spread when a person with Covid-19 coughs or exhales. In addition, the virus can survive for up to 72 hours out of the body on surfaces.

People can catch Covid-19 if they breathe in the droplets or touch infected surfaces and then touch their eyes, nose or mouth.

What Are the Symptoms?

The NHS recognises the key symptoms of Covid-19 infection as high temperature (fever), a new, continuous dry cough, and/or loss or change to the sense of smell or taste. All three main symptoms may appear, or just one or two. Some people may have tiredness, aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhoea. Symptoms begin gradually and are usually mild.

Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment. A small percentage can become seriously ill and develop difficulty breathing. This is particularly dangerous for people with weakened immune systems, for older people, and for those with long-term conditions such as diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.

Some domiciliary care service users will clearly be vulnerable to being seriously ill if they are infected by the virus.

Updated Information

Care in Hand will keep up to date with the latest public health and government information about the risk of coronavirus in Wales. The infection control lead – Delan Umanee - will maintain close links with local health protection teams and will be responsible for circulating essential information to staff and, where necessary, to service users and their families.