Corona Virus- Keep our Hospice safe

The Prince of Wales Hospice Corona Virus Daily Bulletin
A bulletin will be produced twice weekly, usually Tuesdays and Fridays. Anything urgent between these issues will be communicated separately.
 
Headline Information:
  • Latest guidance:
Access Password: PWH0spice#
 
Should I come to work?
Please read the guidance by following the link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-information-leaflet/coronavirus-stay-at-home-protect-the-nhs-save-lives-web-version
 
Who do I contact?
You must contact your manager as soon as possible to let them know that you have been required to self-isolate and you must keep them updated on any developments. During any period of self-isolation you must remain contactable.
 
Clinical Update:
  • We are currently caring for 2 asymptomatic patients on Incare, with one other confirmed admission today.  
 
Non-Clinical Update:
  • There is a planned major update to the Zoom video conferencing application to further improve security. Beginning 30th May all Zoom clients “must be on 5.0+ in order to join any meeting, as GCM Encryption will be fully enabled for all Zoom meetings”.
 
You can update now via their Download Centre:https://zoom.us/download?zcid=1231
 
Or you will be prompted to update when joining a meeting after May 30, 2020. When prompted, simply follow the instructions provided.
 
If you have any issues contact Martin for assistance mward@pwh.org.uk
 
  • Some one way signs have now been put up around the staff areas. The purpose is to try and minimise potential crossover of people on corridors but if/when that does on occasion happen, just walk straight by or wait for the other person to come up the corridor and pass before you walk down.
  • The return to using the old staff dining room over the past few days while the Haven was out of use appeared to have worked well and with only one less chair than the Haven it has not had any significant impact. Being able to utilise the new serving hatch from the kitchen is useful and we would like to soon introduce the ability for staff to pay for food at the point of receipt using a tap and pay system that will be installed at the serving hatch. Therefore, we have decided not to put the Haven back into use as a second staff dining room at this time and instead to reinstate it back in to a meeting / training space. We will continue to monitor this and if we find we are struggling with only one staff dining area we can look to temporarily revert as /if the need arises.
 
Visitors to the Hospice:
(non-Covid) patients supported by the End of Life Care Plan are now allowed two nominated visitors for an hour a day (2-3pm). We will continue to regularly review these restrictions to ensure the balance between supporting families at this difficult time and maintaining the safety of patients and staff.
 
Volunteers:
Volunteers who fall into one of the risk categories that have been advised to social distance will not be allowed to undertake volunteer roles until we receive further guidance.
Actions for Staff:  
Actions for Line Managers:
  • Inform a member of the SMT any staff who are self-isolating or social distancing. Obtain appropriate self-certificates and isolation certificates.
  • Encourage staff, especially those on furlough, to complete this year’s mandatory training.
 
Wellbeing tip:
  • One of our corporate partners has shared their mental health and wellbeing guide with us and is attached to the email.
  • Kath Atherton is available via the telephone to offer emotional support to staff.  She can be contacted Monday to Friday until 6pm on 07824518390.
  • Our Mental Health First Aiders our happy to be contacted to support staff wellbeing and resilience
Susanne Young; 01977 781461, email syoung@pwh.org.uk
Anne Giblin, 01977 781488, email agiblin@pwh.org.uk
 
Unsung Hospice Heroes:
This is an opportunity to celebrate colleagues that have gone the extra mile. Don’t worry if you don’t see your nomination straight away - it will appear in a future week!

This week we are celebrating Diane Peters, nominated by Jo Schofield, who says,
“In these uncertain times where guidance is changing rapidly, Diane has been an absolute star and has responded to my frequent, very short notice, requests at what, I am sure, has been a detriment to managing an extremely heavy workload. Making sure we have correct up to date information communicated to our staff and local community is vital at times like this and Diane’s hard work has enabled us to do that. A massive thank you and virtual hug from me.”
Well done Diane, thank you for your flexibility and responsiveness whilst being a one-woman Marketing and Communications team.

Please email any nominations for your unsung heroes to yoursmt@pwh.org.uk as we want to keep acknowledging those colleagues that particularly embody our Hospice values:
Loving Care
Delivering personalised care and being:
• caring
• honest
• kind
• compassionate
• supportive
• respectful
 
Working Together
Cooperating and collaborating with:
• colleagues and volunteers across the Hospice
• our community and those
outside the Hospice
• patients and those important to them
• supporters
• the wider health community
 
Above and Beyond
Championing the Hospice by:
• dedication
• commitment
• finding out what matters
 
Quality and Excellence
Being the best you can be by:
• being competent
• being professional
• continually learning and developing
• striving for excellence
• taking ownership
 
 
 
 

Looking after your Mental Health
 
We know that many of you may be feeling uncertain and anxious at the moment due to the Coronavirus outbreak.  Below are a few simple tips about how you can look after your mental health right now:
  • Ensure you keep up to date with information but make sure you are referring to reputable sources like www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public.  We are also sending out daily bulletins which can also be found on www.pwh.org.uk/powwow
  • Try to avoid constantly checking social media - this often doesn't give correct information and advice
  • Set specific aside time to keep up to date so that this doesn't consume a disproportionate amount of your time
  • Stay connected with work colleagues, friends and family
You may also find the following information from Action for Happiness useful:
https://www.actionforhappiness.org/media/863032/coping_calendar.jpg
 
You can speak to your line manager or a member of the Senior Management Team about any concerns you may have.  Kath Atherton, our Bereavement Counsellor is also offering listening support to any member of staff.  You can speak to Kath on 07824 518390 up until 6pm. If Kath can't answer straight away please leave a message and she will call you back.
 
Don't forget we also have our Employee Assistance Programme which is available 24 hours a day and is completely confidential.  You can access this by calling 0800 083 3375 or accessing online through www.hmap-access.co.uk (login:  pwhospice & password: employee).

 Coronavirus: Information for Employees
The situation we are facing with coronavirus is unprecedented and as such it is important that we work together to navigate our way through what is likely to be a difficult time.  We ask that all staff are as flexible as possible and, in turn, we will accommodate different ways of working where possible. 
 
We would like to take the opportunity to set out our guidance on the various issues that may arise.
 
Self-Isolation
The Government is advising that people self-isolate under certain circumstances. In the event this applies to you, you must not attend work during the isolation period. You must contact your manager as soon as possible to let them know that you have been required to self-isolate and you must keep them updated on any developments.  During any period of self-isolation you must remain contactable and follow self-isolation guidance from the Government.
 
Self-isolation on the advice of a medical professional will be treated as sick leave and therefore you will be paid in accordance with our normal Sickness Absence Policy. Where you remain well during a period of isolation, we may consider whether you can work from home.
 
Social Distancing
Public Health England have released advice that any individual who is at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) needs to be particularly stringent in following social distancing measures.  This group includes those who are:
 
  • aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
  • under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (ie anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds):
  • chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
  • chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
  • chronic kidney disease
  • chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
  • chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
  • diabetes
  • problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have
  • had your spleen removed
  • a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
  • being seriously overweight (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above)
  • those who are pregnant
 
If you fall under one of the above categories we do not require you to attend work for the 12 week period of social distancing.  For staff who can work from home during this period we will work with you to undertake this.  If your role does not lend itself to you working from home we discuss with you undertaking mandatory training, appraisals and any other appropriate work during this period.  We may also require some staff to take annual leave during this period.
 
If you are required to social distance under the above Public Health guidance you will be paid in full and this will not count towards your normal sickness absence.  You should remain contactable and follow social distancing guidance.
 
Introducing Different Ways of Working
Our highest priority is protecting our staff, volunteers, patients and visitors.  It is for this reason that it is highly likely that over the coming weeks we will move to different ways of working.  We have already restricted access to Incare to essential staff only.  Other measures are likely to include:
 
  • We will ask line managers to speak to volunteers to check whether they would prefer not to volunteer at the present time.  Any volunteers who fall under the social distancing criteria will not be able to volunteer during this period of time. All volunteer opportunities will be kept open for volunteers to return to.
  • Further measures will be put in place to limit contact between colleagues in the Hospice, particularly contact between clinical and non-clinical staff.  It is important that we continue measures to reduce the risk of introducing coronavirus into the Hospice and introduce measures to reduce/delay any spread between staff.
  • Some non-clinical staff will be asked to work from home for some or all of their working time.  We have been reviewing our VPN capacity in light of this.
  • Where it is not possible to continue to run some services, some staff may be asked to work in different ways or in alternative roles.  This will be discussed with individuals in advance and will be considered on a case by case basis.
Working from Home
In order to reduce the number of people in the Hospice we may ask you to work all or some of your working time from home.  Many employees can fulfil most of their responsibilities from home, however we recognise this will be more difficult for some staff and in these circumstances staff may be asked to undertake e-learning training or other work where this is possible. Your manager will agree this with you.  When working from home you will continue to be paid as normal. 
 
School Closures and Caring for Dependents
School closures have been announced, however schools have been advised to remain open for the children of ‘Key Workers’.  We have been notified that all Hospice employees fall under this category and therefore you are advised to speak to your child’s school and make them aware of this. If for any reason you do need to remain at home whilst you make alternative arrangements for your child’s care, this time will be treated in accordance with our normal rules on time off for dependants, therefore this time off will be unpaid. We know that some of our staff have considered pooling childcare with work colleagues to enable them to continue to work.
 
Parental Leave
We would like to take the opportunity to remind all parents of children under the age of 18 that they are able to apply to take unpaid parental leave.  It is possible to apply to take up to 4 weeks per year off per child. Anyone wishing to apply for parental leave should seek advice from Head of HR.
 
Flexible Working
Where your job role allows, during this exceptional period, we may encourage staff to work their hours flexibly over 7 days. As far as possible we will also work with staff who work shifts on rota to plan working time with increased flexibility. These measures will hopefully ease pressure on some of our staff with caring responsibilities.
 
Annual Leave
We understand that during this period staff may wish to cancel their pre-booked annual leave arrangements, or indeed book additional annual leave in order to take time off with full pay. We want to assure you that we will be as flexible as possible in terms of annual leave.
 
Unpaid Leave
We are aware that there are some circumstances highlighted above where staff may need to take time off which is unpaid. In order to avoid unnecessarily financial hardship it will be possible for any member of staff to ask to be paid for up to 2 weeks of time which would ordinarily be 'unpaid'.  In these circumstances we will agree to spread the cost of taking this time off over a period of up to 6 months where this has been agreed in advance.
 
Employee Assistance Programme
We would like to remind you that, if you have worries or concerns about any aspect of the current situation, you have access to a 24-hour telephone counselling service on 0800 083 3375 or www.hmap-access.co.uk (login:  pwhospice & password: employee).
 
We are continually monitoring any developments to the situation and will provide regular updates to you. 
 
If you have any queries about any of the above information please contact a member of the Senior Management Team.
 
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