Tuesday 17 March 2020

Dear Carers and supporters,

Following yesterday’s new guidance from the government I wanted to update you on actions we will be taking here at Gateshead Carers to prevent the risk of COVID 19 spreading to our staff, carers and the people they care for. After careful thought and consultation we have decided to take the following action:

With immediate effect and until further notice;

  • John Haswell House will be closed to the public and carers.
  • Face to face contact with carers will stop. This includes home visits, one to one meetings, carer wellbeing sessions, group sessions, events, activities and meetings held with partner organisations / stakeholders. 
  • Our Volunteer Befriender service will continue but through telephone contact only.

It is very important to us that we are able to continue to support carers and so will continue to do this by telephone, email and text messages. Any carers seeking our support should call our main reception 0191 4900121 or go to our website at www.gatesheadcarers.com

We understand that carers rely on Gateshead Carers so will be making every effort to keep everyone informed of any changes.

Staff will continue to work from the office for the time being although we are planning for the possibility of some or even all of our staff having to manage all of our operations from home. Some staff will be working from home with immediate effect.

I can assure you that we have not taken these decisions lightly, but wanted to take proactive and decisive measures to address the risk of COVID-19 spreading in our community.  We also have a duty of care to our volunteers, carers, staff and fellow tenants in John Haswell House.

The latest advice from government is that;

  • if you live alone and you have symptoms of coronavirus illness (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started.
  • if you live with others and you or one of them have symptoms of coronavirus, then all household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill

Please remember that although we are entering unchartered territory the vast majority of people will have mild symptoms and will recover well and quickly.

If you have any concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with the team.

With much appreciation,

Steve Cowen

Chief Executive Officer