Indoor visits resume at care homes after almost one year of separation

Care home residents in the Midlands can see a nominated friend or relative face-to-face from today (8 March), following almost one year of separation.

Visitors are required to take a coronavirus test, wear personal protective equipment (PPE) and they will be asked to keep physical contact to a minimum.

Handholding is permitted but hugs and kisses are not, the government has said in its guidance.

The return of visitation has been welcomed by Barbara Lloyd, from Brierley Hill, who has only seen her 87-year-old mother Joan through a glass screen for the past six months.

She was the first relative allowed into Portway House care home in Oldbury this morning. 

Watch Amrit Gahir's full package here:

Barbara said: "It's wonderful to be able to come in, to be inside the building, to hold Mum's hand.

"Although I can't get any nearer to her, I'd love to, and to give her a hug. I've waited ages but over the weekend there's been nothing else in my mind but this morning."

Staff at the home say it's been an emotional day.

Last month, Boris Johnson marked a “crucial milestone” in the fight against coronavirus as the NHS confirmed all older residents in England’s eligible care homes have been offered a vaccine.

Elsewhere, the first visitors arrived at Leewood Manor Care Home in West Bridgford this morning.

They had to give a negative Covid test at the entrance before being allowed into their relative's room.

Watch Gareth Owen's full package here:

Ruth Lindstrom said: "It was very exciting, can't believe it, we've waited so long for this year, the separation has been so hard, but here we are, it's been a good day so it's been marvellous."

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