Hats off to Public Health Wales!
26 May 2020
Ever since the announcement in Wales that all care homes will be tested on 15th May, our Welsh teams have been hard at work organising this mammoth task!
We have all had split opinions as to whether the testing should change our management approach due to the inaccuracies, but the teams were keen to test and so we moved forward at speed.
Last weekend our first home in Wales was tested – within 72 hours we had the results back – all negative!
Organising the testing was easy – a simple list had to be emailed to the testing centre. They enabled us to have a choice of dates. We bombarded them with over 30 questions and they patiently went away and found out all the answers. In short, they worked with us.
On testing day, they respected our local policies, and at our request sent different swabbing teams for each isolated zone within the care home. They took the time to answer team questions and even trained some of the team to take swabs to make future testing easier.
Yesterday we tested a second service in Wales. 295 swabs were required to ensure everyone was tested. Once again, the PHW team were brilliant (supplemented by some Evolve volunteers).
I can only compare this to England where we have trouble logging onto the portal, tests don’t arrive on time, no instructions and no return address!! It does make you wonder!
In addition, in England, care homes have to collect swabs themselves after having watched a YouTube video!!
Testing may not be the saviour that resolves the entire COVID Crisis, but it is vitally important that tests are completed. The more data we collect the better chance we have against this thing, and it supports our front-line teams to feel safe.
We hear so much complaining in the public domain about what could have been done better. It really is time we started celebrating the good work that is going on out there!
Director, Evolve Care Group