Despite the Tour de France road closures over the weekend of the 5th and 6th July, local company Home Instead who support older people living in their own homes, successfully carried out their service to the same high standard with commitment and reliability.
Planning went into the continuity of care and service many weeks ahead of the weekend. Owner of Home instead in Harrogate, Ripon and Thirsk, Andrew Van Parys was interviewed by BBC Radio York in June this year on how the event would impact the vital services that Home Instead provide in the community and what plans would be in place to ensure that older people were not left vulnerable over the weekend.
The general advice and guidance received from North Yorkshire County Council prior to the event suggested prioritising those needing more support than others, assessing the risk to the person if they do not have a support visit and to identify a Tour de France friend such as a neighbour or family member who could offer assistance, for example preparing a meal or a drink. When questioned by BBC Radio York on the feasibility of this idea to find a Tour de France friend who can step in as a caregiver, Andrew Van Parys felt that this would not be a realistic option for those with complex needs involving personal care and medication or for those with particular illnesses and diseases. Home Instead CAREGivers are highly trained and professional, they have gone through rigorous employment checks including 6 references and of course a criminal records check.
Faced with major road closures and diversions, the team from Home Instead carefully planned weeks in advance of the event on how their support service could run smoothly without any disruptions.
Home instead match their clients and CAREGivers carefully so there is a good relationship and consistency in the care provided, with the road closures in place it was still important to ensure that if any changes had to be made to the regular CAREGiver, that new introductions took place in advance so that the CAREGiver was known to the client before the weekend. Location became a priority, looking at the closest located CAREGivers to the clients and whether the team could walk or cycle if cars were not accessible.
The office in Ripley was managed all weekend and the team were ready with any information and advice that the CAREGiving team may need, especially information on alternative routes and accessibility around the Harrogate and Ripon area.
Andrew Van Parys commented:’ thanks to the careful planning and hard work from all the team, all our clients received their usual weekend visits, all CAREGivers were known to our clients and in fact we even picked up some business from other care providers who could not fulfil their service.’
Home Instead is changing the way care is delivered in the UK. Their service is tailored to the needs of individual clients and ranges from companionship, meal preparation, light housekeeping, post-discharge care, personal care, medication reminders, shopping and errands. The service is totally flexible to meet client needs and is available from as little as 1 hour to 24 hours a day or live-in, seven days a week.
To contact Home Instead in Harrogate call: 01423 774490, Ripon call: 01765 530400 and for Thirsk call: 01845 440510. For more information about Home Instead please visit: www.homeinstead.co.uk