Care home residents on the Yorkshire Coast can now leave their homes for "low risk" visits without having to quarantine for 14 days when they return
Care providers say a decision to enable care and nursing home residents to be able to leave their homes on visits without having to self-isolate afterwards is a victory for common sense.
The change comes after the government was threatened with legal action - with family members claiming that existing rules were "barbaric".
Residents can now go out for “low-key visits”. This can include visiting their family’s garden or taking a walk with a named visitor or care worker.
Care provider body The Independent Care Group (ICG) said the decision was a victory for common sense, as the threat from Covid-19 in the community recedes.
ICG Chair Mike Padgham said:
“This is welcome news and something we have been calling for over the past few weeks.
“It seems sensible that a resident who has had both vaccinations can enjoy a safe, socially-distanced trip out to get some fresh air and a change of scenery.
“We know that the lack of social contact and visits has been detrimental to the health of residents and as others within the community start to enjoy freedom from the restraints of lockdown it is only right and fair that those in care and nursing homes do so too.
“Our only gripe is that the Government has announced that this can start immediately after the Bank Holiday, which doesn’t give care providers much time to prepare! This will be quite labour intensive for care and nursing homes and I think residents and their families will have to show patience and understanding whilst these visits are organised.
“We will have to tread carefully and trust that people taking residents out do obey the rules about not going indoors, for example.
“Overall, it is a very good move and we hope it can be the start of further easing of restrictions on care and nursing homes, once it is safe.”