Wellington care home among the first to have new rapid C-19 test kit

With millions of the new rapid Covid-19 test kits due to be rolled out across the UK before Christmas, Wellington care home Camelot House and Lodge is among the first to receive its supply and today resumed close-to-normal meetings between residents and loved ones for the first time in months.

Six team members at the home have undergone approved training and passed competency tests to ensure the new ‘lateral flow’ rapid test kits – which give results in just 30 minutes – are administered in the right way.

Among the first to be tested and admitted for a personal visit was Ginny Harvey, daughter of resident Pam Boyle.

After watching mum and daughter’s emotional reunion, Bonnie Frear, deputy manager of Camelot House and Lodge, said: “We have wanted all our relatives’ families to be able to resume visiting them in person and it has been a long time coming.

“Today has just been amazing. To see Ginny and Pam together again has been really heart-warming.

“The tests that we have had delivered are enough for two visits per week for each resident, plus staff. Hopefully it will start bringing us back into some sort of normality which is what we all want.”

The Department of Health and Social Care has said these tests should enable visits to restart in all tiers in all care homes that are free of coronavirus.

Hand-holding and hugging are permitted as long as other infection control measures are followed, although visitors are still asked to minimise contact as far as possible and wear personal protective equipment to help protect the residents.

The 90-bed Camelot House and Lodge is run by award-winning specialist dementia care providers Camelot Care, who also run homes in Bridgwater and Plymouth. Further details at www.camelotcare.co.uk