Care home wellbeing project: support to relatives and family carers during the Covid-19 pandemic

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch in Sussex (Healthwatch Brighton & Hove, Healthwatch East Sussex and Healthwatch West Sussex organised a series of webinar events between September 2020 and March 2021 on behalf of informal carers (families and friends) of care home residents.

Their purpose was to:

  • Share unpaid carers’ views and experiences of visiting (or not visiting) their relative or friend in a care home during the pandemic.
  • Enable unpaid carers to ask questions and gain answers from health and social care representatives about current and future access to care home residents.
  • Have access to timely, accurate information around official and local visiting guidelines.
  • Raise any concerns about wider care home service improvement; and
  • Influence decisions made by health and care leaders during the pandemic.

Issues discussed in the webinars included being able to visit their loved ones in care homes; the impact of separation on both them and their loved ones, communication with care homes; the vaccination roll out, when full visits would be able to resume and how health and care partners should support relatives and carers.

The recommendations from the webinars were:

  • Share timely National Guidance updates with relatives.
  • Follow through pledges made during these webinars.
  • Encourage shared learning across Sussex between health and care partners.
  • Care Home providers to share good practice.
  • Continue with the option for Zoom ‘visiting’ alongside face-to-face visits; and
  • Keep the ‘good practices’ identified in these webinars

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General details

Report title 
Care home wellbeing project: support to relatives and family carers during the Covid-19 pandemic
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Brighton And Hove
Healthwatch East Sussex
Healthwatch West Sussex
Date of publication 
Wednesday, 7 July, 2021
Date evidence capture began 
Tuesday, 1 September, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Wednesday, 31 March, 2021
Key themes 
Cleanliness hygiene and infection control
Communication between staff and patients
Holistic support
Information providing
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Quality of care
Service delivery organisation and staffing

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Engagement event
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Social care services 
Nursing care home
Residential care home

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Not known
Age group 
Not known
Not known
Not known
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
Not known

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.