Plymouth woman hugs mum in emotional first care home visit since the start of Covid pandemic

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A Plymouth woman has hugged her mum for the first time in almost a year after being allowed to visit her care home.

Karen Rogers has been campaigning for families to have proper access to care facilities since the beginning of the pandemic.

But some care providers say they are still unsure what the future holds as the debate continues about testing and vaccination.

Karen said: "I just went over and hugged her, I was emotional, tried to hold back the tears I did cry a bit. I gave her the biggest tightest squeeze.

"It was nice, she was very confused, trying to explain to her that she couldn't leave with me was hard, upsetting. I had to lie and say I was going to bring the car round to collect her."

Karen had been speaking to her mum through windows. Credit: Karen Rogers

Marion has advanced dementia. Until now, Karen had only been able to communicate with her through doors and windows. But after returning a negative Covid test, she was allowed inside.

"It's something so many of us have been fighting for, so it was lovely to actually do that, to hold her and be that close to her. It's what I've been wanting to do this whole time."

Karen Rogers says she was glad to visit her mum. Credit: ITV News

The future of care home visits may depend on an ongoing debate about the different sorts of tests.

The Government is recommending rapid 'lateral flow' swab tests, which produce a result in 30 minutes. But some experts have warned that this method might not be completely accurate - causing frustration for those battling for care home access.

Diane Mayhew, from Rights for Residents, said: "We're now back in lockdown, almost all visits have been banned. Right now we are beside ourselves with worry as to how long this is going to go on. There is no plan or end in sight, and people will die as a result of loneliness and isolation through not having any family contact."