COVID-19: OUR NEW APPROACH TO TREATMENTS
How we offer our service has had to change in response to guidelines issued by Government and our own Trade Associations. Additionally, and we would hope only in the short term, we have decided to only undertake home visits and to restrict our working days to Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.
We have introduced a range of measures to help reduce the risk of Covid-19 infection, this includes following Government guidelines, the use of PPE where appropriate, undertaking a full risk assessment, introducing enhanced cleaning and hygiene procedures, and close monitoring of my own health and that of my clients.
Please would you read the following information carefully before you proceed to book an appointment. The information covers the following:
- New Policy Statement - Covid-19
- Prebooking and treatment questions
- Symptoms of COVID-19
Policy Statement – Covid-19
Adhering to guidelines
Throughout the pandemic, we will be following guidelines issued by the government, NHS, other relevant authorities and our Trade associations, regarding safe and hygienic practice and the use of any personal protective equipment (PPE).
COVID-19 Risk Assessment
We have carried out a full risk assessment, in line with guidance from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), in order to:
- identify what work activity or situations might cause transmission of the virus;
- think about who could be at risk;
- decide how likely it is that someone could be exposed; and to
- act to remove the activity or situation, or if this isn’t possible, control the risk.
Prior to seeing any clients, we will be:
- monitoring our own health (including performing a weekly Covid-19 test) and postponing treatments if we have COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19.
- contacting our clients 24 hours in advance and postponing any treatments if: they have COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19; are clinically extremely vulnerable and shielding; anyone in their household has COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19; they have been in close contact with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19 in the past 14 days; they have been contacted by the NHS Test and Trace Service and told to self isolate.
- asking our clients to call and cancel and postpone treatment on the morning of their appointment if they have a temperature or other symptoms of COVID-19.
Enhanced cleaning and hygiene measures
We have introduced enhanced cleaning and hygiene measures between clients, which includes washing and disinfecting any non-porous surfaces and therapy equipment, such as couches, and replacing any porous or single-use items, such as tunics, towels and couch roll. Strict personal hygiene measures will also be adhered to, including regular handwashing/ sanitising. Due to escalating costs in the supply of PPE and increased cleaning protocols, we have had regrettably to apply a surcharge of £2.00 to each treatment.
Adapting or restricting treatments
It may be necessary for me to adapt or restrict certain treatments, in order to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 and/or protect our clients’ health and safety. Any clients likely to be impacted will be advised as soon as possible. For the time being:
- Direct work to the face must be excluded
- We may wear clinical masks during the treatment
- We may require clients to wear clinical masks when laying on their back
- At the request of clients we can wear gloves if necessary.
My responsibilities as a client
As a client you agree to:
- Answer questions relating to your health and Covid-19
- Contact us to reschedule an appointment if you have any symptoms of Covid-19 or if any person in your household is self-isolating
- Ventilate the treatment space before we arrive by, for example, opening a window or door.
- Check your temperature on the morning of your treatment and if higher than usual to postpone treatment
- Ensure other members of your household or colleagues are in another area of the building.
- Wash your hands or use hand sanitiser when we arrive.
- Where possible pay by debit or credit card or by other cashless methods e.g. direct transfer via BACs.
Maintaining social distancing
Please note that while many treatments involve close contact, we will be observing social distancing measures wherever possible. This might include, for example, maintaining an appropriate distance during the consultation process, and when arriving and leaving for an appointment.
If a treatment is cancelled or postponed at short notice because you have COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19, any standard cancellation fees will be waived.
Prebooking and treatment questions:
Q. Do you currently have COVID-19 or any symptoms of COVID-19?
If you have any symptoms of Covid-19, are waiting for a COVID-19 test result or have tested positive for COVID-19, postpone your treatment until it is safe. If you currently have symptoms of COVID-19 but have not yet used the NHS 111 online coronavirus service, we would advise you do so.
Q. Have you had COVID-19?
If you have had COVID-19 but are now well and no longer need to self-isolate, we ask that you seek permission from your GP or consultant before you proceed to have a treatment.
Q. Does anyone in your household or support bubble have COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19?
If the answer is ‘yes’, we will have to postpone your appointment until it is safe to proceed.
Q. Have you been in close contact with anyone else in the past 14 days who has symptoms of COVID-19 or been contacted by the NHS Test and Trace service and told to self-isolate?
If the answer is ‘yes’ to either question, we will have to postpone your appointment until it is safe to proceed.
Q. Do you fall within the extremely vulnerable person (high risk) group?
If you have been categorised as clinically extremely vulnerable and require shielding, you will have received a letter from the NHS explaining this. We regret that treatments must be postponed until the government indicates that it is safe for you to leave home or have visitors providing non-essential care. Clinically extremely vulnerable people may include:
- solid organ transplant recipients
- people with specific cancers:
- people with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy
- people with lung cancer who are undergoing radical radiotherapy
- people with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
- people having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer
- people having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors
- people who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs
- people with severe respiratory conditions including all cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- people with rare diseases that significantly increase the risk of infections (such as severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), homozygous sickle cell)
- people on immunosuppression therapies sufficient to significantly increase risk of infection
- women who are pregnant with significant heart disease, congenital or acquired
- other people who have also been classed as clinically extremely vulnerable, based on clinical judgement and an assessment of their needs. GPs and hospital clinicians have been provided with guidance to support these decisions
Q. Do you fall within the vulnerable person (moderate risk) group?
Unlike people in the high risk group, those who are classed as clinically vulnerable will not have received a letter from the NHS. If you are unsure if you are clinically vulnerable, please refer to the NHS website. If you discover you fall within this group you must seek permission from your GP, midwife or consultant before treatment can proceed. Those in this group may include:
- are 70 or older
- have a lung condition that's not severe (such as asthma, COPD, emphysema or bronchitis)
- have heart disease (such as heart failure)
- have diabetes
- have chronic kidney disease
- have liver disease (such as hepatitis)
- have a condition affecting the brain or nerves (such as Parkinson's disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy)
- have a condition that means they have a high risk of getting infections
- are taking medicine that can affect the immune system (such as low doses of steroids)
- are very obese (a BMI of 40 or above)
- are pregnant
Symptoms of COVID-19
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal Most people with coronavirus have at least one of these symptoms.