Residential care homes across Bridgend county borough have been making arrangements to support visits for families and friends to see each other face-to-face.

With many homes run by independent care providers, families and friends wishing to visit their loved ones are being asked to contact the individual care home directly for information on specific arrangements in place.

It comes after Welsh Government contacted local authorities following the firebreak lockdown, encouraging local authorities and health professionals to undertake a review of the risks through regional incident management teams.

The Council’s Cabinet Member for Social Services, Cllr Nicole Burnett, said: “We have written to all care home providers in the county borough to let them know that care home visits can commence again on the condition that they first carry out a risk assessment in accordance with Welsh Government guidance, seek specialist advice and are not in a Public Health Wales 28-day lockdown.

“With each home set up very differently, arrangements are likely to be different across care homes so we encourage families and friends to speak to the homes directly for information on if, and how, visits will be managed.

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, staff at care homes have been working hard to keep everyone as safe as possible and maintain contact with families through a variety of ways such as photos, video calls and telephone calls.

“We know how hard it has been for families unable to see their loved ones face-to-face and the anxiety and sadness this has involved, and we welcome the latest Welsh Government guidance around visits to care homes.”

Earlier this week, Welsh Government announced it would be rolling out temporary ‘pods’ to care homes across Wales to better facilitate visits over Christmas and the winter months.

The £3million pilot will cover the procurement, installation and lease of 100 units, with an initial 30 being installed and ready to use before Christmas.

The semi-permanent units will be available for a period of 6 months, while longer-term solutions are sourced and put in place.

This also includes £1 million for plans to support providers who prefer to make their own arrangements on a similar basis.

It is hoped one of the care homes in Bridgend county borough will be among the first to receive a pod before Christmas.


Image credit: Georg Arthur Pflueger