The Elderly Residential Services have stepped up their contingency plans and implemented a series of measures to safeguard residents in the light of the recent increase in positive COVID-19 cases in the community and neighbouring countries.

The decision to step up was taken during yesterday’s meeting of the Civil Contingency Council chaired by the Minister with responsibility for civil contingencies Samantha Sacramento.

In addition to internal ERS procedures on COVID-19, all precautionary measures have been taken alongside GHA and Public Health recommendations.

These precautionary measures include:

• Residents’ excursions to public places in the community will cease. An exception will be made for independent residents. PPE must be worn and comply with the HMGoG Golden Hour scheme.

• Residents will be swabbed more frequently; now every 2 weeks instead of every 4 weeks

• Visiting hours will be reduced to 4-6pm, with a maximum of 2 visitors per resident per day.

Exceptions will be made for relatives of residents reaching end of life care.

The ERS kindly requests that families comply with these measures to protect their loved ones against COVID-19, which could have catastrophic consequences to vulnerable residents and service users. ERS says it will be constantly reviewing the number of positive cases in the community and follow recommendations from Public Health.