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CQC issues warning to care providers on visitor bans

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has told care providers they should not wait until the vaccination programme is complete to allow visits.

The care watchdog said it was aware that some English care homes are continuing to impose blanket bans on visits against government guidance.

CQC chief inspector of adult social care Kate Terroni (pictured) said the individual must be at the centre of the decision and “all decisions need to stay under review as circumstances change.”

“Blanket bans are unacceptable and people should follow government guidelines, give sufficient weight to local risks and advice from their Director of Public Health as well as giving consideration to the home environment,” she added.

The CQC advised that, where decisions are being made on visits by loved ones, testing, vaccinations or other medical visits, the focus “must always be on the individual needs and rights of the person”.

“We understand providers are rightly cautious in order to keep those they care for safe, but they mustn’t wait for the completion of the vaccination program to facilitate visits,” it added.

End of life visits “should always be supported and enabled”, the CQC said.

The watchdog warned it will take “swift regulatory action” where it has concerns over visits.

That could include giving a provider a public warning about actions that they must take, restricting a service’s operation, including by issuing requirement notices and warning notices and in cases of significant concern, placing conditions on a provider’s registration.

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