Visiting care homes

From Monday 17th May, 2021, government guidance on care home visits should be followed at all times – even if the resident you are visiting has been vaccinated. Read the full guidance on GOV.UK. 

Who can visit?

Each resident is allowed to have five named visitors, including an essential care giver, who can make regular visits. Apart from the essential care giver, no more than two visitors can visit together or over the course of one day.

As well as the five named visitors, other family and friends can also visit. These types of visits are carried our according to the best way the care home can manage them and will be outdoors, behind screens or in visiting pods. 

Must visitors be vaccinated?

It is strongly recommended that all visitors and residents get vaccinated. Find out how to book or manage your coronavirus vaccination on NHS.UK.

How to arrange a visit

You must arrange a visit in advance by contacting the care home.

Visits outside of a care home may be granted in some circumstances. For more information, please read, Visits out of care homes: supplementary guidance on GOV.UK.

What to expect from a visit

All visitors must have a lateral flow test before each visit and follow all the infection prevention and control measures set out by the home, such as social distancing and wearing PPE. Each home should be able to provide you with their visiting policy. 

Care homes support NHS Test and Trace and will keep temporary records of all visitors. 

Please plan ahead and arrive on time. If you are late, you may not be able to have your visit extended if other are people are waiting to see residents. If you are early, you may be asked to wait outside. 

What type of physical contact can we have?

Named visitors who are not the essential care giver are advised to keep physical contact with the resident to a minimum.

You may wish to hold hands, but bear in mind that any type of physical contact increases the risk of transmission. For this reason, there should be no close physical contact such as hugging.

Decisions on how to protect the most vulnerable may be made by the care home and resident's social worker based on an individual risk assessment, following national guidance.

What happens if there is an outbreak?

If there is an outbreak of Covid-19 in a care home, all visits will be stopped for a minimum of 14 days. If a case of a variant of concern is identified, visits will be stopped until everyone in the care home is tested and no new cases are found within the following 28 days.