Department: Volunteering and community support

Activity: Meeting service user in their home

Description of activity:

Staff and volunteer team meeting a service user in their home to provide emotional and practical support where remote communication is not possible.

Legal requirements and guidance for reference:

COVID-19 – We have conducted a risk assessment for this session to produce this Safe System of Work, we have referred to the following sources:

LA PPE Guidance for Staff Issue 5 V45 11.6.20 FINAL DCC- available from Westbank

All service users are advised of the following:

  • If anyone is experiencing symptoms of Covid-19 (Persistent new cough, high temperature or loss of taste or smell) they must not meet staff / volunteers at their home. On staff / volunteer arrival should ideally phone the service user or ask at a safe distance if users are experiencing Covid symptoms, if so the service user will be advised to return inside, dial 119 to request a test and take the appropriate medical precautions.
  • Details of any meetings will be kept for a minimum of 21 days to assist the NHS track and trace process.
  • Where possible staff / volunteers will take the users temperature before entering the house using a contactless forehead thermometer.
  • Users should identify a room for the meeting; ensure good ventilation i.e. keeping windows and doors open and where chairs tables can be wiped down before / after the meeting.
  • Users should sanitize all potential contact points before staff / volunteers arrival.
  • Clients should dress appropriately for the inside room temperature bearing in mind that the room will be ventilated.
  • Staff / volunteers will not tolerate any verbal and or physical abuse.

Staff / volunteers and service users are also advised of the following:

  • To ensure continued good hygiene before, during and after each meeting, i.e. washing hands with hot water and soap for a minimum of 20 seconds or regular use of hand sanitiser.
  • All parties must comply with social distancing before, during and after the meeting. Staff / volunteers and clients must stay 2 metres apart, Staff/Volunteers should wear a Type 11 surgical mask and the service user must wear a face covering throughout the meeting, unless in the service users’ case there is a medical reason why a face covering cannot be worn.
  • If two meters is not possible, a minimum of 1 metre social distance plus:
    • Indoors: Minimise the contact time, meaning only essential support to that user be given. Or consider asking for meeting to be held outdoors.
    • Use screens or barriers to separate people from each other
    • Sit back-to-back or side-to-side working (rather than face-to-face).
    • The staff member/volunteer should be paired with one service user so reducing the number of people each person has contact with. This is ‘fixed teams or partnering’
  • Staff/Volunteer to have use a Type 11 Surgical mask and the service user should carry a face covering at all times.
  • Actual face to face meetings opposite one another should not take place, side by side or back to back and at an appropriate distance is required
  • Limit use of any shared touch surfaces – i.e. tables, chairs, door handles, pens etc. which must be wiped down following use.
  • If items need to be handed to one another identify a “drop off zone” to remove any direct contact. The volunteer or staff member should sanitise their hands once they have left the service users home.

 Staff/Volunteers are advised of the following:

  • Ensure that someone knows where you are, use outlook calendar for staff and co-ordinator to manage volunteers.
  • If not comfortable that social distancing, appropriate sanitation not completed staff / volunteers will be supported to postpone the meeting until appropriate standards have been met.
  • To carry disinfectant wipes at all times to wipe down shared touch surfaces before leaving the service users home.
  • To carry hand sanitiser to be used before and after entering/leaving a service users home and before getting into their car.
  • To carry Type 11 surgical masks.
  • To carry a mobile phone at all times.
  • Take own food, drink, pens and any other items that may be required.
  • To ensure that there are no known risks for a 1 – 1 meeting.
  • Report any concerns to your line manager.
  • Staff to ensure that contact is limited as much as possible and ideally arrange support between one staff / volunteer and just one service user.
  • Discuss with all service users the content of the SSoW prior to any meeting, send out via email / post if possible and or necessary and have a hard copy to hand during 1-1 meetings. 

Date: 12/11/2020

Review Date: SSoW will be reviewed and regularly updated in line with government guidance.

Review carried out by:  Sarah Forde