Online Focus Group Care Homes during Covid-19

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Liverpool ran an online focus group for the relatives of care home residents on 22 October 2020 about their experience of contact with their loved ones during the pandemic.  as they wanted to find out about local residents’ experiences and perceptions of this service.  They spoke to 4 people.

Overall, people had a negative experience of care homes during the pandemic.  All participants said they had been unable to see or speak to their loved ones as much as they would have liked. While some people were able to attend garden or window visits with loved ones over the summer, different care homes had organised these in different ways, and window or garden visiting arrangements were not always suitable for participants or their loved ones.

People raised concerns around the impact on care home residents with dementia, who might find window visits difficult; might not be able to use a telephone or video-calling app to speak to relatives; and might not understand why relatives are no longer visiting them.

People also told Healthwatch that it was difficult to get in touch with care home staff and to get clear information about how their loved one was doing. A number of people reported that their loved ones’ condition had deteriorated during the pandemic, and felt this had been upsetting for them.

It is clear that the inability to visit loved ones in care homes had a significant impact on people, as well as on their loved one living in a care home. It is also clear that communication between families of residents and care homes should be improved.

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General details

Report title 
Online Focus Group Care Homes during Covid-19
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Liverpool
Date of publication 
Wednesday, 18 November, 2020
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 22 October, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Thursday, 22 October, 2020
Type of report 
Key themes 
Cleanliness hygiene and infection control
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Quality of care
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Focus group
How was the information collected? 
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 
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? 
Does the information include other people'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.