The manager of the Millfield Care Home in Keswick has thanked Cumbria County Council for co-ordinating the delivery of vital PPE (Personal Protection Equipment) items during the coronavirus lockdown.
Val Loan, who manages the Millfield, said: “We (the Millfield residents and staff) are completely free of coronavirus. I think there are some rumours out there that we have a case, but this isn’t the case.
“We received a delivery of 500 gloves, aprons and masks on 10th April. We have a good stock of PPE in the home and I have no concerns around it, but we were grateful to receive the delivery organised by the county council. I have spent lots of time sourcing PPE and so has the owner of the Millfield. Prices are drastically inflated but that is the same for all providers. I did start building up our stocks from mid-February and am so pleased I did,” added Val.
Meanwhile, as part of the county’s stepping up of support for Cumbria’s residential and home care sector in the battle against the spread of Covid-19, a three-pronged approach is being taken:
- Co-ordinating requests for support from care settings to ensure that the right support can be offered as quickly as possible – including staffing, PPE, infection control and testing.
- Managing the discharge of patients from hospitals into care settings to minimise any infection risks.
- Daily data gathering of suspected and confirmed COVID-19 cases in care settings to provide up to date understanding of the scale of the issue and identify settings in need of support.
The priority is to ensure that care settings which are infection free remain that way, and where infection is either confirmed or suspected that support is provided to help contain the outbreak and minimise the impact.
Currently in Cumbria data indicates that:
- 23 of the county’s 112 care homes have had suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases.
- There are 55 care home residents confirmed to have COVID-19, with a further 170 suspected cases.
- Since 1st April 2020, with 17 confirmed deaths as a result of COVID-19 and 74 where COVID-19 is believed to have been a factor. For context, a further 100 people have died from non-COVID-19 related causes.
- There are approximately 3400 people living in the county’s residential and nursing homes. This data will continue to be tracked on an ongoing basis.
Meanwhile, special packs of essential items for patients and staff on the frontline have delivered to hospitals and care homes across the county. In total, more than 120 patient packs and 80 staff packages – donated by and made up of goods from retailer Primark – included toiletries, pyjamas, underwear and towels. They were delivered by volunteer drivers from Story Contracting, to hospitals and care settings in Keswick, Cockermouth and Workington, as well as the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and the West Cumberland Infirmary in Whitehaven.
The delivery was organised by a multi-agency partnership team working to support frontline workers and patients, including Cumbria County Council, both of the county’s NHS trusts, Story Contracting and Cumbria Police.
Colin Cox, Director of Public Health at Cumbria County Council, said: “This is a very distressing situation for residents, their families and the staff supporting them and our thoughts are with them. We have been working hard to support the care sector since the epidemic began, and several parts of the health and care sector have now come together to help provide the most robust testing and infection control system we possibly can.
“It is so important that we take all possible steps to support these most vulnerable members of our community and I’m very grateful both to the staff in care homes, and to families of residents, whose support is so crucial in keeping residents safe.”