Care home Covid rules: Yet again my sons small care... - Mencap


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Care home Covid rules

class9F profile image

Yet again my sons small care home has to lock down due to a member of staff testing positive. No one else has returned a positive test, everyone is double vaccinated yet they still have to lock down for 14 days. The general population don’t have to isolate if identified as a contact of a positive case if they are double vaccinated yet care homes do. This is a home of 6 healthy young adults with autism and learning disabilities. I have written to my MP about care homes for younger adults being treated the same as care homes for the elderly when the risks are very different. She referred the matter to the health minister Helen Whately who replied by quoting the current guidance completely avoiding the point that younger adults with a learning disability and no underlying health conditions are not actually at any greater risk than any other double vaccinated adult. My son is now going to miss but still pay for 4 days at his day centre and 2 trips out with me and is looking like his flu vaccination will also need to be postponed. The positive case was a member of night staff who had not worked for 3 nights so under normal rules would not even trigger the home residents as being contacts.

15 Replies

So sorry to hear of your situation. I sympathise with your frustration and the lack of support from your MP but I’m not familiar with the care home rules so can’t comment on that aspect. Maybe someone else can give you more information on that.

class9F profile image
class9F in reply to Eeviee

I am very familiar with all the rules and the care home are as frustrated as me. They are going to try and negotiate with PHE on Monday as there was no one available yesterday late afternoon. I did play the “essential care giver” card although I only visit once a week and take him out. I said it was detrimental to his mental health not to see me when he was expecting it so I am seeing him outside for an hour.

That seems so unfair and unreasonable the worlds gone mad and our young disabled love ones don’t ever seem to have the same rights as everyone else it’s shameful and as for Helen Wately I’ve come across her before and I don’t like her at all she comes across as all about her and her career and not about the people she is supposed to be working for and caring about.

It really is so frustrating and barbaric, as those with learning disabilities have definitely been hit far too hard, and forgotten in all of this. Common sense has gone awall, it’s ridiculous. I too don’t have a lot of time for Miss HELEN Whatley ! I feel your frustration, my son is in supported living and that’s been hard enough, but your dilemma is much worse. What about going to the media, not sure how to go about it but it might help. Good luck

Hi, I am so sorry this is happening to your son , I have been in similar circumstances with my sons day care, he lives at home with me so daycare is really needed , the fact that they were getting full pay wich came out of his budget even though he wasn't there for 16 months was a scandal in my eyes, the staff didn't know this and when I told them I recieved a phone call offering 2 days back from next week?? . I know caution has to be taken but I really think our kids have taken the brunt because they are forgotten , , I asked is it right that parents and carers have to bring these situations to the attention of MP ect . I'm fed up with them being treated the same as the elderly when they are young fit and healthy adults and everything else is opened up for others of thier age, ..thier mental health is never mentioned . I have written to my MP and signed various petitions in the past and I only ever get a generic letter back which never really answers the questions,

I really hope you get a good outcome and our adult children can live thier Iives as others of thier age do , sorry I can't help but I just wanted to show some empathy with you , personally I think the surcomstances you describe seems very unfair to you both I hope your son is OK

We had exactly the same situation in my sons Mencap supported living a few weeks ago, when physically able adults were asked to lock in for 10 days after 1 staff member tested positive. To make this so much worse, it was when the rest of adults in England were having rules relaxed. I let the Care Manager know that this was discriminatory and could be damaging to mental health just as they were beginning to return to activities and recover some trust after prolonged disruption. As you have said, Covid is no longer life-threatening for vaccinated, healthy adults and what if there is another positive test or do we now start liking everyone down when flu comes? After discussions between the manager and the council authorising body, lockdown was ended quickly and the precedent was set. We cannot accept any policy that makes different and unfair rules based on assumptions about any group of people. Isn't that discrimination? Good luck, I hope they see sense.

Tracidu profile image
Tracidu in reply to Galwaybay2

It's very worrying that this will keep happening as all care and support staff go home at the end of thier shift so go out socially and mix with people which is completely understandable , this could never end for our family members if they close down everytime someone tests positive even if they havnt been in work for a few days . I don't want anyone to be ill but sometimes a lot of shut down situations seem very unfair to LD

I really sympathise. My daughter is a young healthy adult who has had 2 vaccinations AND Covid (mild, recovered well) . because a few members of staff tested positive she and her fellow residents in a small care home have been locked up for 4 weeks so far, and the local authority say it will continue for another 3 weeks. Meanwhile, staff come and go bringing Covid into the site, while my daughter is not even allowed to go for a walk. I am beside myself with worry about her mental health - she is going crazy. i have contacted the local authority, Public Health Wales, Mencap, Learning Disability wales, the MP, and apparently no one can do anything. I want to bring my daughter home for the next few weeks (I've had covid too, so we are at zero risk) and was told by the care home that if I tried they would have to call the police. Myself and other parents are so concerned about what we believe is a horrific abuse of human rights that we have contacted a firm of solicitors, Irwin Mitchell, to see if they will help us. I am waiting for a response from their human rights team. This is obviously happening all over the place and something needs to be done urgently.

We are going to go to the press too.

Our young healthy family members are treated as sub-human, locked up and ignored. There will be a very high price to pay for this.

Is there some way that all of us in this situation can get together and bring a legal case? I think it has come to that. I've spent 18 months trying to change this unjust, discriminatory and I think illegal situation.

We need to work together. Legal Action? Non Violent Direct Action? Media?

Martin Luther King said 'when a law is unjust, it is your moral duty to stand up against it' (or something like that!).

Don't forget, it used to be illegal for women to vote, for black people to use the same restaurants as white people. Just because something is the law doesn't mean it's right.

49Twister profile image
49Twister in reply to Suethemum

I agree with everything you say, and yes it is abuse of their human rights. This really should not be happening now after all this time,18 months down the line. It’s easy for me to say but I would be bringing my daughter home, but I understand your in Wales and have different rules. Maybe if all the parents made a stand and all brought their children home, again it’s possibly not appropriate for some of them. You’ve probably felt like doing that it’s just unimaginable what your all going through. The best of luck and please keep us posted.

Suethemum profile image
Suethemum in reply to 49Twister

Thank you. Yes, some of them can't, some of them want to. I am so torn. I don't want to break the law but I feel I'm failing my daughter and failing in my moral duty.

Thank you for all your comments. It seems that Wales are in a far worse state than England. I saw my son on Saturday afternoon in the car park for an hour. I played the “essential care giver” card and said it would be detrimental to my sons mental health not to see me when he was expecting to thereby making my visit essential, It is surrounded by trees so not visible to passers by and my son is not a runner so it was fine. Luckily today common sense has prevailed and PHE have confirmed that the home does not have to lockdown I presume because it was over 48 hours since the staff member was on duty when they tested positive. However the guidance does need to change so these over the top reactions do not happen. I would be interested to hear what Irwin Mitchell have to say. I have written to the JOint committee on human rights to voice my concerns.

49Twister profile image
49Twister in reply to class9F

Great news, very happy for you. I know your fight is not over but you will get there. Good luck.

Suethemum profile image
Suethemum in reply to class9F

I'm glad things are better. Sadly, Irwin Mitchell have nothing to say, as they have not replied to my enquiry, nor has a second law firm I contacted. My daughter has been locked in for 4 and a half weeks now and is in a bad way mentally.

49Twister profile image
49Twister in reply to Suethemum

I honestly don’t understand it at all. Obviously here in England things are pretty normal. Most people have been double jabbed so everything is open. My son, he’s 47, is in supported living and he’s been able to come and stay with me since May when it opened up, they have to do some testing which isn’t an issue. Prior to then he hadn’t been home since Xmas. What is the situation in Wales now, have most people not been vaccinated? Surely it can’t be that bad, they need to sort it out, disgraceful.

I have had a reply to my email to the joint committee on human rights. They have launched an enquiry so I am obviously not the only person to have raised the matter. They are currently gathering evidence. Here is the link to the enquiry

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