During the coronavirus pandemic Autumna introduced its S.A.F.E. badge to help families find care providers who were going above and beyond Government guidelines to control infection.
At Autumna, our mantra is transparency. We look at things from the consumers' point of view and so to get the S.A.F.E. badge, all care providers need to do is answer the questions that families looking for elderly care have, openly and honestly.
Many of these questions were asked, and answered, in the CQC ESF report, so if care providers want to publish that on their profile page, then the S.A.F.E. badge is automatically displayed.
In addition, Autumna has introduced a new tab that asks questions about other measures taken by providers that go above and beyond the Government guidelines on infection control. These include air filtration & purification systems, sterilisation and disinfection devices, diagnostic equipment, virus testing kits and contact tracing policies.
Providing this information also allows care providers to display the S.A.F.E. badge.
Email Debbie for more detailed information or call her on 01892 33 53 30.
The most frequently asked question on the Autumna advice lines was once: “Where’s the best care home near me?” this has been quickly superseded by the questions, “Are there any safe care homes near me?” and “How can I find a safe care home or safe home care for my elderly relative?”
During the pandemic, our team at Autumna struggled to give a definitive answer, because like the families searching for ‘safe’ care homes or domiciliary care, we also found it hard, if not impossible, to find the information online.
So, in June 2020 we launched S.A.F.E. (Symptom Assessment For Everyone).
We believe that if public confidence in the elderly care sector is to be restored, then care homes and home care agencies will need to show that they are doing everything possible, going forwards, to take control of, and to eradicate, any infection outbreaks. And with visiting severely restricted, the only way to do that is online.
S.A.F.E. is not about whether your care setting is COVID-free or has, or has not had the Coronavirus. It’s about being transparent and publishing details about the infection control practices in a home or care service, that go above and beyond the government regulations and guidelines, that will help people make informed choices when it comes to later life care.
One of the main ways to restore confidence is through third party validation.
Many of the care providers Autumna speaks to on a daily basis, expressed a wish to publish their CQC Covid-19 Emergency Support Framework report and this is where we started.
So, Phase 1 of our S.A.F.E. (Symptom Assessment For Everyone) initiative has been to make that possible.
There is a tab on all Autumna premium profiles that allows care homes to upload their individual report.
Once uploaded, the Autumna S.A.F.E. badge is automatically displayed and crucially, families are able to search for care providers displaying the badge.
If you need help uploading your CQC Covid-19 report, we are always on hand to help.
As care providers initiate their own infection control measures, exceeding those laid down in Government guidelines, Autumna has introduced a new tab that allows them to promote these aspects of their safety standards.
Crucially the S.A.F.E. badge is searchable by visitors to the Autumna website. Autumna has always looked at things from the point-of-view of the person looking for elderly care, and they have told us they need to be able to find the providers who are demonstrating excellent infection control.
This is just the start of our campaign to rebuild public confidence in the safety of care homes and home care agencies.
Advances in training methods, assistive and AI technology, will soon make routine daily testing for the symptoms of any infection, commonplace in the care setting - not just for the service users and carers, but for visitors too.
And when those advances come, Autumna will be there to promote them, to promote the use of them and to allow families looking for elderly care, to search for them.
Our mantra at Autumna has always been transparency.
Going forward - and even after COVID has gone - we will want to add whatever third party data is available, to help reassure the public that care homes and home care agencies have the right training and infection control policies in place to ensure everybody is safe.
We have always been very open to input from the care sector and the general public. We have big ideas for what Phase 3 of S.A.F.E. should look like, but you may have suggestions too.
We’d really like to hear from you. Email Debbie, call her on 01892 33 53 30 or set up a zoom meeting. Autumna is always keen to hear from others and collaboration is key.
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