Elderly Residential Services have announced that visits will be allowed to all ERS sites as from 11th August 2021.
The decision to re-open ERS to visits has been taken on Public Health advice that the absence of COVID-19 cases among residents and staff reduces the risk of an outbreak. However, due to the high prevalence of the virus within Gibraltar, strict procedures must be adhered to in order to safeguard residents and staff.
• Visits will be permitted as long as there are no confirmed positive cases in ERS sites.
• In line with Public Health recommendations, in the event that a positive COVID-19 case is detected, visiting in that particular site will be suspended temporarily.
• PPE must continue to be worn indoors at all times. Social distancing must be maintained at all times between different social bubbles.
• Visitors must contact their particular Residential floor in order to book their visit in advance of the allocated visiting times.
• Visits will be allowed daily between 1 pm and 6 pm.
• Only 1 designated visitor will be allowed to visit during the week. The designated visitor can be changed from one week to another.
• All visitors must provide proof of receipt of, at least, one dose of a COVID-19 vaccination in order to be allowed in to any ERS site during visiting times.
• If the visitor has only had 1 dose of the vaccine, there must be a gap of no more than 14 days between the first dose of vaccine and the visit.
• Non-vaccinated visitors will be allowed to see their loved ones in the external communal areas in the respective site.
• Visitors will require a negative PCR the day before to their first planned visit. Visitors must contact 200 41818, and identify themselves as an ERS visitor. Visitors will have to consent to their swab NEGATIVE result to be notified to ERS management for the sole purpose of safeguarding the residents during their visit. Consent will be given to Drive Through team.
• A swab test will be carried out between 7.30am and 12.00 noon the day before their proposed visit.
• The swab result will be notified via SMS (text message) to the visitor. ERS management will be informed of negative results via automated GHA email by 9:00am on the day of visit.
• On arrival to their booked visit, the visitor’s name will be checked against the list of negative results provided by the Drive-Through, in order to confirm their negative status.
• If the name of the visitor is not in the list, they will not be allowed to visit, and they will be informed to contact the Drive Through team on 200 63427 or 20041818.
• Visitors will also require an antigen Lateral flow test on the ERS site prior to their visit. The PCR will be done on a weekly basis, prior to the first visit in that week.
This procedure will be under constant review and will be amended according to the prevalence of the virus in the community, in order to provide the ERS residents with a safe system to enjoy the visits of their families and friends.
Minister for Health, the Hon Samantha Sacramento, said: ‘I’m delighted that we are in a position to open ERS to visitors, with strict safeguarding procedures in place. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the excellent team of staff at ERS, whose diligence and care has effectively shielded our facilities from a further outbreak and allowed us to reinstate much-needed and valued visitations ’.