Frequently asked questions

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Frequently asked questions2020-07-09T20:49:52+01:00

At risk groups 12 questions
As the Government has paused the shielding arrangement in England from 01 August 2020. What does this mean for staff members who are shielding or in the red risk group?

On the 23 June 2020 the Government updated its guidance for people who are shielding due to Covid-19.

Given the significant decrease in the prevalence and rate of COVID-19 infection over the last few weeks, the Government has relaxed shielding guidance in England so that from 06 July shielding individuals are – able to meet in groups of up to 6 people outdoors; no longer need to observe social distancing with other household members, and may form a ‘support bubble’ with one other household.

The Government has also now directed that from the 01 August 2020 shielding will be paused – allowing shielding employees to return to their workplace if deemed Covid-19 safe and where they are unable to work from home. There is further guidance available for the clinically extremely vulnerable.

The Trust has produced a guidance pack for managers containing helpful information on the return to work process together with the necessary risk assessment questionnaire and other associated templates. This pack can be found here.

During July, managers will be speaking to their staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group, to update them on the revised Government guidance and to work through the return to work questionnaire and identify and complete any actions required to facilitate their safe return to work and/or workplace from 01 August 2020.

Staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group should not return to their respective workplaces at CUH until the risk assessment process has been completed and until suitable arrangements have been put in place to ensure their safe return.

Please raise any queries with Divisional Management, Medical Staffing, Employee Relations or Occupational Health teams. Occupational Health and Wellbeing (OH) will happily assist both managers and staff members in addressing any occupational health issues which are identified from the risk assessment process.

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How long will my Risk Group stay on HealthRoster?

Your record on HealthRoster will be updated to contain data about the date you completed the risk assessment and the risk level if you have not been assessed as ‘green’. This information will be accessible to other delegated users, roster (and other) Trust management. The data recorded is to enable safe rostering of staff.

This data will remain on HealthRoster for the duration of additional Covid-19 control measures being in place at the Trust, up to a maximum of 12 months. Once the data is no longer required to enable safe rostering of staff, it will be deleted.

Should your circumstances change, or in the event of an updated risk assessment being issued, you should complete a new risk assessment using the latest version available.

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I am from a BAME community. Do I have to take extra precautions?

In early May, as the evidence of the disproportionate impact that Covid-19 is having on members of the BAME community began to emerge, we established a BAME Staff Health taskforce to bring together representatives from our BAME staff engagement group, occupational health and infectious disease specialists, and leaders from across the trust.

One of the areas of focus of the taskforce was contributing to the development of the latest version of the staff individual risk assessment.

Version 5 of the risk assessment, issued week commencing 18 May 2020, takes account of the latest position on heightened risk groups including the BAME community, to keep pace with the emerging evidence and guidance as it is published.

Given the emerging evidence, we encourage all staff to complete the risk assessment with their line manager. The tool sets out the risk factors as they are known at present. It includes a local assessment proforma to complete with your manager identifying how potential exposures to Covid-19 can be reduced in your role and work in the Trust. Importantly, it also identifies potential sources of exposure outside the workplace and how we may help to reduce risk of those with you. Once the risk assessment is completed your manager must update your MAPs record so we can have assurance that it is being used to manage risk across the workforce. It will also enable us to communicate with staff in the specific risk groups in the near future again.

Our Occupational Health team are available in confidence to offer advice and information and support amendments to duties as appropriate. You can contact OH on 01223 21676 or ohschelp@addenbrookes.nhs.uk

You might also like to join the weekly BAME Staff Network WEBEX meetings, which take place on Wednesdays. Details of the meeting are available on the portal.

In addition to our OH team and the BAME Staff weekly WEBEX meetings, we have other psychological and emotional support available for all staff. Please visit the staff portal for full details.

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I am in the red risk category and am shielding for 12 weeks. Will I be paid my substantive salary for the period that I have to shield?

Yes, substantive staff will be paid in full for their usual pattern for the required period.

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Should patients be using disposable cutlery?

There is no need to use disposable plates or cutlery. Crockery and cutlery can be washed by hand or in a dishwasher using household detergent and hand-hot water after use.

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Can a suspected, contact or confirmed case of COVID19 leave the ward? ( i.e. to go to the concourse or go for a cigarette)

Patients who request to leave the ward should be discouraged from doing so in line with social distancing guidance. If you have patients on your ward who smoke this can be challenging for them. Please support them with smoking cessation and nicotine replacement therapy

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I live with a vulnerable family member who has been advised to shield. Can CUH help with alternative accommodation so that I protect my family member from risk?

Please email accommodation@addenbrookes.nhs.uk to discuss potential accommodation options we may be able to offer you.  Accommodation available includes studio apartments in town and en-suite rooms at Cambridge colleges.

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Has the staff individual risk assessment changed?

Yes. The latest version is version 5.0, issued week commencing 18 May 2020.

This version has been developed by the Occupational Health team with input from many colleagues, including representation from the BAME staff community in CUH, physicians and others outside of the Trust, to reflect the developing evidence and national guidance on risk factors (including pregnancy, age, gender and ethnicity) and changes within the hospital. The updates include:

  • Refining the criteria within the orange risk groups to include age gender and ethnicity.
  • Increased information in respect to local risk assessment and conversation about control measures to maintain safe systems of work for our staff.
  • Including a local risk assessment proforma to identify how potential exposures to Covid-19 can be reduced in people’s role and work in the Trust.
  • Identifying potential sources of exposure outside of patient facing areas and how the risk of these can be reduced.
  • Adding statement of consent for an employee’s risk category to be added to their MAPs/HealthRoster record.

Version 5 of the risk assessment sees a shift away from broad, prescriptive control measures. It is intended to inform and structure conversations between individuals and their manager, to jointly assess risk and to identify, agree and apply locally appropriate control measures (including those outside the workplace such as travel to and from work) to maintain safe systems of work for each member of staff.

If you have completed one of the previous versions please review the risk assessment using the latest version and ensure your manager updates your MAPs record, so we can have assurance that it is being used to manage risk across the workforce. It will also enable us to communicate with staff in the specific risk groups in the near future again.

We will continue to closely monitor and review the tool and produce further version(s) as necessary.

If you have any queries about your risk assessment, please contact OH on 01223 21676 or ohschelp@addenbrookes.nhs.uk

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I believe I have severe Asthma. I see that this is a condition deemed as higher risk. What should I do?

The staff individual risk assessment contains additional risk stratification for staff with asthma. If, after reading this, you are still unsure of your risk level you should contact Occupational Health to discuss your specific circumstances. You will be advised which at risk group you are in, taking account of your asthma and any other relevant factors.

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I am 28 weeks pregnant (or greater) what should I do?
Staff members who are pregnant at 28 weeks or greater, or are at any stage of pregnancy and have significant heart disease (congenital or acquired), are considered within the red risk group. See the staff individual risk assessment for full details.

There is guidance from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists which can be accessed at: https://www.rcog.org.uk/globalassets/documents/guidelines/2020-08-10-occupational–health–advice–for–employers-and–pregnant-women-during-the-covid-19-pandemic.pdf  

It includes the following advice:

Healthcare workers after 28 weeks’ gestation or with underlying health conditions

For pregnant women from 28 weeks’ gestation, or with underlying health conditions such as heart or lung disease at any gestation, a more precautionary approach is advised. Women in this category should be recommended to stay at home. For many healthcare workers, this may present opportunities to work flexibly from home in a different capacity, for example by undertaking telephone or videoconference consultations, or taking on administrative duties.

All NHS employers should consider both how to redeploy these staff and how to maximise the potential for homeworking given current relaxation of NHS Information Governance requirements, wherever possible.

The RCM provides advice for pregnant healthcare workers who cannot be redeployed or work from home. Staff in this risk group who have chosen not to follow government advice and attend the workplace must not be deployed in roles where they are working with patients. Services may want to consider deploying these staff to support other activities such as education or training needs (e.g. in IPC or simulation).

These measures will allow many pregnant healthcare workers to choose to continue to make an active and valuable contribution to the huge challenge facing us, whether at home or in the workplace, until the commencement of their maternity leave.

The New and Expectant Mothers (NEM) Risk Assessment should be reviewed before 28 weeks taking into account this guidance from the RCOG.

Download the New and Expectant Mothers Risk Assessment here (PDF version).

Download the New and Expectant Mothers Risk Assessment here (Word version).

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Someone who I live with has received a text or letter stating that they are in the very high risk group (shielding). What should I do?

Please inform your manager of this; consideration should be given to minimising your risk of exposure to Covid-19 (for example, facilitating home working or non-clinical work, if this is feasible). If it is necessary for you to undertake clinical work, the aim should be for it to be in green areas only.

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Escalation plans 1 question
How is the Trust preparing for an increase in the number of patients with COVID-19
Using our own experts we have modelled a reasonable worst case scenario for CUH that shows we will need 460 beds available for caring for COVID-19 positive patients. Of these, the model suggests 135 will be critical care beds where patients will need to be supported with ventilation. While the lockdown of the country should help reduce transmission, we are planning on the basis that it won’t, which we feel is prudent at this time.  We are now making plans for equipment, staffing and other operational requirements to deliver this level of care.

As of Friday 27 March, we have 376 empty beds, separate COVID and non-COVID pathways in ED, a process for receiving admission of respiratory patients, a plan to significantly increase the number of critical care beds in the hospital that is partly enacted and a suspension of normal business which includes stopping visitors to our wards and clinics and postponing all non-emergency surgery.

Our taskforces cover:

  • Staffing, staff welfare and training
  • Cohorting and configuration
  • Critical care (ventilation and oxygen)
  • PPE
  • Supply chain
  • Testing
  • Management
  • Communications and engagement
  • External links
  • Enabling workstreams (including critical infrastructure)
  • Recovery

The work of the taskforces is proceeding rapidly, with some plans finalised and others well advanced.  We will keep you updated on key developments through the daily COVID-19 updates.

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Infection control, PPE and cleaning 34 questions
If I remain unclear about PPE or infection control advice having read the FAQs, whom should I contact?

If your query is not urgent, please email the infection control or PPE bronze inboxes (put addresses here) – these are regularly reviewed and your questions will be responded to individually following discussion. If you have an urgent query, please call the infection control team on 217497.

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Should patients be using disposable cutlery?

There is no need to use disposable plates or cutlery. Crockery and cutlery can be washed by hand or in a dishwasher using household detergent and hand-hot water after use.

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Is eye protection we have available reusable?

Visors are advised to be used for sessional use. Therefore please doff visors and discard in a clinical waste bin each time when leaving the clinical area and don a new visor when re-entering the clinical area.

The hospital has both disposable and non-disposable goggles. Please ensure non disposable goggles are cleaned thoroughly with a clinell wipe for 1 minute after their use.

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Should overshoes PPE be worn?

Shoe covers are not recommended and could increase risk of slip injuries.

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What PPE should be worn when caring for patients with dementia/neurological/MH diagnosis where behaviours require close contact with the patients?

Please wear PPE as per the scenario you are working in.

At a minimum Scenario 0 PPE should be work (apron, gloves, surgical mask).

Eye protection should be worn if there is a splash risk. This would include a risk of biting/spitting and potential contact of respiratory/bodily secretions.    

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/879107/T1_poster_Recommended_PPE_for_healthcare_workers_by_secondary_care_clinical_context.pdf

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What PPE should be worn for care of patients with dressings in different places of the body?

Please wear PPE as per the scenario you are working in. At a minimum Scenario 0 PPE should be work and eye protection should be worn if there is a splash risk.

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What PPE should be worn for Care of PICC lines, central lines, SVC, long lines?

Scenario 1 PPE should be worn for the insertion of vascular devices and the vascular access team should wear Scenario 1 PPE at all times.

For the removal or manipulation of vascular devices please wear PPE as per the scenario you are working in.

Eye protection should be worn if there is a splash risk.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/879107/T1_poster_Recommended_PPE_for_healthcare_workers_by_secondary_care_clinical_context.pdf

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Can a suspected, contact or confirmed case of COVID19 leave the ward? ( i.e. to go to the concourse or go for a cigarette)

Patients who request to leave the ward should be discouraged from doing so in line with social distancing guidance. If you have patients on your ward who smoke this can be challenging for them. Please support them with smoking cessation and nicotine replacement therapy

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Do I need to change my mask every time I have a sip of water/refreshment whilst on the ward?
  • Ideally breaks are to be taken on the ward in an appropriate break area
  • Mask should be changed on each occasion that a refreshment/food break is taken to prevent contamination from the outside of the mask to the face (mouth, nose and eyes) and hands. Any doffing of PPE should be followed by adequate hand hygiene.
  • Please ensure staff hydrate themselves adequately during the allocated break/lunch periods to reduce repeated mask changing and higher likelihood of contamination.
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Can the break and staff rooms on my ward be used for lunch/refreshments and do I need to wear PPE when in them?

Where break rooms or staff rooms are identified as such on a ward, they may be used for lunch/refreshments provided the following conditions are met:

    1. The door to the room is closed
    2. All PPE is doffed prior to using the room (including gloves, apron, cap, eye protection and mask) with adequate hand hygiene
    3. It is possible to doff PPE safely before entering the room (i.e. the room is not entered through a red corridor) – i.e. before the doffing and donning area.
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What PPE should be worn by concourse food assistants?

The concourse is a public and non-clinical area. Concourse food assistants should adhere to governmental social distancing guidelines but do not need to wear any form of PPE over and above what is usually recommended for safe food handling. Clinical staff should not be wearing PPE in this area.

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What PPE should be worn by Speech and Language Therapists?
  • For all AGP procedures in any setting – please wear Scenario 2 PPE (FFP3 mask, gown, cap, eye protection, gloves +/- apron).
  • For non AGP procedures in any setting –please wear PPE as per the scenario you are working on. Eye protection should be worn if risk of any splash injury.

Link to Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists guideline – https://www.rcslt.org/-/media/RCSLT-Dysphagia-and-AGP220420FINAL-1-(1).PDF?la=en&hash=2E918D05AD4E63B0AFAE99F0DEA9ECBCFA64C9D3

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What area of my work is considered an AGP?

Speech and Language Therapy

Induction of sputum is identified as an AGP in the national government guidance. The Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists therefore considers the following assessments/treatments as AGP procedures:

    1. Clinical evaluation of swallowing
    2. Videofluoroscopic swallowing studies
    3. Tracheostomy and laryngectomy care
    4. Cough reflex testing

Nasogastric tube insertion is not identified as an AGP procedure. Please wear PPE as per the scenario you are working in. For scenario 0, eye protection should also be worn.

    1. A risk assessment of the necessity of an assessment and the patient location should be carried out.
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What area of my work is considered an AGP?

Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists

  • The use of nebulisers, oxygen therapy via nasal cannula and mask are not considered AGP procedures.
  • Induction of sputum is identified as an AGP in the national government guidance. Chest physiotherapy should therefore be considered an AGP procedure and Scenario 2 PPE should be worn. This should ideally happen in a side room.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/879107/T1_poster_Recommended_PPE_for_healthcare_workers_by_secondary_care_clinical_context.pdf

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What PPE should I be wearing?

Security, Maintenance, Support (including chaplaincy) and Cleaning Staff

  • Please wear the appropriate PPE for the clinical setting you are visiting in the hospital ( i.e. Scenario 0, 1, 2).
  • Staff working in communal and reception that are unable to maintain 2 metres social distance should wear a surgical mask.
  • If a Scenario 1 side room or bay needs to be entered on a Scenario 0 ward – please ensure appropriate PPE for Scenario 1 is worn.
  • The mask should only be changed when it becomes moist.  Please do not wear masks in non-clinical areas and do not re-use once they have been removed as there is a risk of contamination to the face and hands with the outside of the mask. Always perform hand hygiene after removing a face mask.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/879107/T1_poster_Recommended_PPE_for_healthcare_workers_by_secondary_care_clinical_context.pdf

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Do I need to wear a mask in the hospital corridors if I am not with a patient?

Hospital corridors outside of clinical settings are considered clean and hence no PPE is required if there is no patient contact. You should maintain social distancing and ensure face masks have been disposed of in clinical waste bins, not general waste, followed by hand hygiene.  If you have just dropped off a patient to a non-clinical area (e.g. transport), please discard your PPE at the nearest clinical area, and perform hand hygiene.

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Should I visit a ward with COVID suspected or positive patients?

Consider whether your visit to a ward (particularly a scenario 1 or 2 area) is necessary or whether advice could be provided remotely. If a patient requires face-to-face review, this should be provided as per clinical need.

Plan your visits where possible to avoid going in and out of scenario 1/2/3 areas multiple times i.e. if you have two patients to see – try to make one visit not two.

If possible within your teams, try to limit cross over of staff between green and red/amber wards.

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What PPE do I need to wear during resuscitation?

Up until the point of CPR or airway management see algorithm below) fluid repellent surgical mask, apron and gloves is sufficient PPE. CPR is considered an aerosol generating procedure by the Resuscitation Council UK and scenario 2 PPE should be worn by all attending the arrest when CPR is in progress.

Please observe this PPE guidance even if you do not suspect COVID19 in the patient. Scenario 2 PPE should be available on all resuscitation trolleys across the Trust.

On scenario 2 wards, scenario 2 PPE should be worn throughout.

https://www.resus.org.uk/media/statements/resuscitation-council-uk-statements-on-covid-19-coronavirus-cpr-and-resuscitation/faqs-on-covid-19-for-hcps/

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Is Entonox or administration of pressurised humidified oxygen an AGP?

Neither of these are considered AGPs. High-flow nasal oxygen (HFNO) is considered an AGP. Click here for a full list of AGPs.

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Do I need an FFP3 mask to administer nebulisation in a scenario 0/1 situation?

PHE do not currently consider nebulisation to be an AGP so a surgical face mask is appropriate in a scenario 0 or 1 situation. NERVTAG advised that during nebulisation, the aerosol derives from a non-patient source (the fluid in the nebuliser chamber) and does not carry patient-derived viral particles. If a particle in the aerosol coalesces with a contaminated mucous membrane, it will cease to be airborne and therefore will not be part of an aerosol. Staff should discard their gloves immediately after helping patients to remove nebulisers and oxygen masks and perform hand hygiene. Click here for a full list of AGPs.

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What PPE do I need for an NG tube insertion?

NG tube insertion is not currently considered an aerosol generating procedure (AGP) by PHE. We would recommend PPE appropriate to the scenario you are working in. If you are working in scenario 0, we would recommend you also wear eye protection.
Click here for a full list of AGPs.

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What PPE do I need to obtain a COVID-19 swab?

You should wear a scenario 1 PPE (gloves, aprons, surgical cap, surgical face mask and eye protection) as per PHE guidance. Here is a video link on how to obtain the swab https://www.hps.scot.nhs.uk/web-resources-container/covid-19-obtaining-an-upper-respiratory-tract-diagnostic-sample/

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Do I need to shower at the end of my shift?

This is not necessary, however, if you feel you need to please use the staff showering facilities nearest to your area. Please ensure you change into your clean clothes before leaving work.

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If I wear a head covering for religious reasons, what is the advice regarding PPE?

You should wear PPE as per the scenario in your area. Ideally, bring a second head covering with you at work and change before leaving work as per uniform change.

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Do I need to change my shoes when I come and leave work?
  • Please make sure your shoes are closed, waterproof and wipeable. Ideally, you should leave your work shoes at work and wipe them with clinell wipes if they become contaminated and before leaving work.
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Can I buy my own scrubs to wear to work?
  • The trust has sufficient PPE including scrubs for all staff in scenario 1 and 2 working areas. Please make sure they are not stockpiled in your area.
  • If you would rather use scrubs instead of your normal work clothes in scenario 0 clinical areas, then you could use your own supply of scrubs. Please change into your scrubs when you arrive at work. Scrubs must be removed before you leave.
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What is the best method of washing my uniform/work clothes?
  • Public Health Guidance advises washing uniforms and clothing worn at work
  • separately from other household linen
  • in a load not more than half the machine capacity
  • at the maximum temperature the fabric can tolerate, then ironed or tumbled-dried.
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Can I come to work in my uniform?

Scenario 0: We recommend you change into your uniform when you arrive at work and out of it before you leave. If you are wearing your own clothes at work – please ensure you change when you get home. Please avoid wearing your uniform when travelling back and forth to work and outside of your place of work. Uniforms should be transferred home in a disposable plastic bag, which can be disposed in normal waste.

Scenario 1 and 2: You need to change into scrubs as part of your PPE before entering the scenario 1 and 2 restricted areas and remove the scrubs before leaving the area. Scrubs from scenario 1 and 2 areas should be left in linen bins.

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What are scenarios 0,1,2 and 3?

All wards and outpatient areas in the trust have been assigned as scenario 0,1,2 or 3 areas. This refers to the type of PPE that you should wear in that area. For detailed guidance including videos covering donning (putting on) and doffing (taking off) of PPE please see our PPE pages.

Briefly:

  • Scenario 0: All clinical areas without any known or suspected COVID-19 cases
  • Scenario 1: Designated ward, triage and assessment based care with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients; e.g. N2, MSEU
  • Scenario 2: Cohorted areas where aerosol-generating procedures (AGP) are carried out frequently with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients; e.g Intensive care areas including John Farman and neurocritical care units
  • Scenario 3: Operating theatres and other areas where procedures are performed with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients.
    The scenario assigned to a particular ward/area should be clearly marked with posters at the entrance. Please note that as more suspected/confirmed COVID patients are admitted to hospital, areas may change scenario level so you will need to check every time you enter.

Please be aware that in some circumstances, e.g. if you are carrying out an aerosol generating procedure (AGP) you will need to wear a higher scenario level of PPE than is required as core PPE in a particular clinical area. AGPs should always be performed in a side room.

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I need to ask a infection control related question that is specific to a particular area.

If you are asked infection control questions specific to particular areas, please ensure you copy in the division IC lead into your response or divert it to them for advice if you are unsure

They are as follows

Division A David Enoch
Musculoskeletal diseases, digestive diseases, and perioperative care (adult critical care, theatres and anaesthesia).

Division B Nicholas Brown
Cancer, Labs and Imaging, Clinical Support including Outpatients, Pharmacy, Therapies & Dietetics, Medical Physics, Radiation Protection and Clinical Engineering.

Division C James Whitehorn/Theo Gouliouris/Vanessa Wong
Acute Services (including the Emergency Department), Inflammation & Infection and Transplant

Division D Jumoke Sule
Neuroscience, ENT (ear nose and throat), H&N (head and neck)/plastic surgery and cardiovascular-metabolic medicine.

Division E Fiona Cooke
Women and Children’s Services

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What additional cleaning schedules are in place across the Trust?
There are 140,000 square metres of cleaning space, 24 entrances, 54 lifts and 210 flights of stairs.

There is a lot of space to clean with just over 600 Medirest staff and additional rapid response and deep clean teams.

All areas have a scheduled clean daily. Public areas and toilets have additional cleans every day.

We are working with infection control team to manage this.

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We have stocks of duckbills and cones left – can these be used?
Yes, duckbills and cones can be used and we should be using that stock.
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How long should we leave facilities empty before next patient?
The cleaning team are working closely with infection control. The advice is amber clean and once dry you can use straight away.

Clean machinery in accordance with manufacturing guidance.

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Line managers 14 questions
As the Government has paused the shielding arrangement in England from 01 August 2020. What does this mean for staff members who are shielding or in the red risk group?

On the 23 June 2020 the Government updated its guidance for people who are shielding due to Covid-19.

Given the significant decrease in the prevalence and rate of COVID-19 infection over the last few weeks, the Government has relaxed shielding guidance in England so that from 06 July shielding individuals are – able to meet in groups of up to 6 people outdoors; no longer need to observe social distancing with other household members, and may form a ‘support bubble’ with one other household.

The Government has also now directed that from the 01 August 2020 shielding will be paused – allowing shielding employees to return to their workplace if deemed Covid-19 safe and where they are unable to work from home. There is further guidance available for the clinically extremely vulnerable.

The Trust has produced a guidance pack for managers containing helpful information on the return to work process together with the necessary risk assessment questionnaire and other associated templates. This pack can be found here.

During July, managers will be speaking to their staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group, to update them on the revised Government guidance and to work through the return to work questionnaire and identify and complete any actions required to facilitate their safe return to work and/or workplace from 01 August 2020.

Staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group should not return to their respective workplaces at CUH until the risk assessment process has been completed and until suitable arrangements have been put in place to ensure their safe return.

Please raise any queries with Divisional Management, Medical Staffing, Employee Relations or Occupational Health teams. Occupational Health and Wellbeing (OH) will happily assist both managers and staff members in addressing any occupational health issues which are identified from the risk assessment process.

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Do I need to quarantine for 14 days after returning to the UK from overseas travel?

If you need to make plans for travelling outside of Covid-19 travel corridors

All staff are reminded that the following guidance remains in place:

If you find that you need to make overseas travel plans to countries outside of the Covid-19 travel corridors which you consider to be essential, please discuss this in advance with your line manager. Your manager will need to ensure that all requested absence can be covered by your team and this will need to include a 14-day period of quarantine on your return. Until your line manager is able to provide this assurance on a case by case basis, you are advised not to book any such travel. Agreement is required for how your 14-day period of quarantine absence will be managed, which may include homeworking, working the time back, taking annual leave or unpaid leave, or a mixture of the available options.

Please be aware that countries on the Covid-19 travel corridor list are changing frequently and with little notice. Employees making plans to travel to countries currently exempt from quarantine on their return home should still discuss and agree with their manager what arrangements will be in place should a 14-day period of quarantine become necessary.

Pay options relating to quarantine

The four options below are subject to annual leave being agreed in advance of travel:

Option 1 – The employee can request to work from home for the quarantine period
Option 2 – If the employee cannot work from home, they can request to be paid as normal and work the time back over a period to be agreed with their manager and before 31 March 2021 at the latest
Option 3 – The employee can take annual leave or request authorised unpaid leave to cover the quarantine period
Option 4 – The employee can request any combination of the above options to cover the quarantine period, which the manager will consider alongside the needs of the service

Following discussion with the employee, should managers require further clarification or advice on how to manage the quarantine period they should contact HR Consult.

Guidance on how to record each of the options on Healthroster is available here.

If you become unwell
Finally, regardless of whether or not staff are returning from trips overseas, should they experience any Covid-19 symptoms, they must contact occupational health to request a test (swab/PCR) and must not attend work until cleared to do so.

In addition to the main publicised symptoms of a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss of, or change in, the normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia), a test should be requested if you have other symptoms suggestive of a viral illness such as; hoarseness, non-persistent cough, nasal discharge/congestion, shortness of breath, wheeze, headache, muscle aches and nausea/vomiting/diarrhoea.

It is also necessary to contact occupational health before you start back to work if you were in contact with a confirmed or suspected case of Covid-19 whilst travelling.

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If one of my team is quarantined as a result of returning to the UK from overseas travel, how do I manage the quarantine period and how do I record on Healthroster?

Subject to the annual leave being agreed in advance of travel, there are four options available to employees and managers in the treatment of the required quarantine period on return to the UK. The four options are as follows:

Option 1 – The employee can request to work from home for the quarantine period.
This should be recorded on Healthroster as working day absence – ‘Working off site no enhancements’

Option 2 – If the employee cannot work from home, they can request to be paid as normal and work the time back over a period to be agreed with their manager and before 31 March 2021 at the latest.
For Healthroster: Select all duties that are not to be worked in the 14-day quarantine period and cancel with the reason: Quarantine 14 days return to UK. Do not make any type of absence entry. Their hours account column will show as owing hours – ensure all extra hours worked to pay this back time are entered as you go through the year, and as the staff member pays back their hours the owed column will need to be back to zero by March 31st.

Option 3 – The employee can request authorised unpaid leave to cover the quarantine period.
For Healthroster: Enter Other leave type ‘Unpaid Authorised Leave’ for the 14-day quarantine period
• Check the entry has 2 weeks contracted hours attached – ie 75 hours if F
• Pro-rata if part time

Option 4 – In exceptional circumstances the employee can request authorised paid annual leave to cover the quarantine period, e.g. if the employee has a compelling reason for the travel, for example to attend a significant overseas family event or occasion.
For Healthroster: Enter Annual Leave for the 14-day quarantine period
• Ensure the staff member is not exceeding their AL entitlement for the year

The employee can request to their line manager any one or combination of all four options to cover the quarantine period, which the manager will consider alongside the needs of the service.
The position regarding the easing of lockdown restrictions and overseas travel requirements is subject to frequent change, therefore the Trust will continue to review and revise its position in light of each three-weekly Government review. All staff are asked to check the latest advice at www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

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A member of my team is experiencing difficulty in accessing carer support/childcare, because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic – what options do I have to support them to be able to work during this time?

CUH recognises that there is additional anxiety for our staff relating to carer responsibilities.  The Trust will provide additional flexibility for staff during the Covid 19 pandemic in addition to the standard carers leave arrangements. Your staff may be experiencing any of the following:

  • Their usual carer support systems, e.g. day centre support for family members who are frail or have other health and care needs, are not currently available to them
  • They have had to take on additional carer responsibilities to help vulnerable family members stay out of hospital and within a safe environment during this time
  • Their child/children have not been able to attend school or off-site day nurseries. (Please note CUH’s day nursery provision remains in place)
  • Their usual childcare support (e.g. child-minder, family member etc.) has not been able to care for your child/children
  • Their other forms of regular childcare support during term time (e.g. morning or afternoon school clubs/grandparents etc.) are not available
  • Their plans to use a school summer holiday club may be cancelled or there is limited provision. (CUH will try to find out more about what is available locally and place any information on the Childcare Covid pages as soon as possible).

In the first instance, please talk to your member of staff about any ideas they have to work flexibly or whether they can work a different shift pattern for a defined period if this could help address their difficulties and be arranged around the needs of the service.

Where they continue to experience difficulty with accessing carer support/childcare due to their usual arrangement not being available to them (including school provision) there are five options available to help support your staff during these challenges as follows:

  • Option 1 – They can use some of their annual leave entitlement with the agreement of you as their line manager.

         Recording on Healthroster:

         – Enter annual leave for the agreed period.

         – Ensure the staff member is not exceeding their AL entitlement for the year.

  • Option 2 – They can request the extended carers leave option – see details here.
  • Option 3  They can request to work from home where their work can be carried out in this way; this may mean agreeing that work may have to be done flexibly at different times during the week or a combination of working at home and at base depending upon their circumstances. This should be agreed with you as their line manager.

         Recording on Healthroster:

         – Record as working day absence – ‘Working off site no enhancements’

  • Option 4 –If they cannot work from home due to their job role (e.g. they are in a clinical role or a role that requires their presence on site), and where they have already exhausted the extended carers leave, they can request to continue to be paid and mutually agree with you, as their line manager, to gradually work back the time taken by 31 March 2021.

         Recording on Healthroster:

Units/teams with live rostering and active hours accounts should complete the following actions:

Select all duties that are not to be worked in the period and cancel with the reason ‘Extended Carer’s Leave time to be paid back’.  Do not make any type of absence entry.

Their hours account column will show as owing hours:  ensure all extra hours worked to pay this back time are entered as they go through the year, and as they pay back hours their hours owed column will need to be back to zero by March 31 2021.

Units/teams with absence only and/or inactive hours accounts should complete the following actions:

Make an Other Leave absence entry for 14 days – ‘Extended Carer’s Leave time to be paid back’ (Ext Carers). This should be carefully checked and have 2 weeks of contracted hours attached – i.e. 75 hours if full time (amend the hours section on the entry screen as required).

Each time the staff member pays back some of these hours over the year, make the following entry: ‘Working day’ – Paying back carer’s leave time’ (Payback CL):

 – This might be a few hours at a time.

 – Ensure the start and end time and the hours paid back are correct in each of these entries.

Monitor regularly that staff who have an extended carer period are paying back the hours appropriately and will have paid back all hours by March 31 2021.

  • Option 5 – If they wish to request unpaid leave to support their current circumstances they may do so.

          Recording on Healthroster:

          – Enter Other leave type ‘Unpaid Authorised Leave’ for the agreed period.

          – Check the entry has the contracted hours attached.

          – Ensure pro-rata if part time.

If your staff member requests one or a combination of the above options because of carer difficulties, please review with them and agree how their request can be arranged flexibly around the needs of the service.

You can also contact HR Consult on 01223 257000 or hrconsult@addenbrookes.nhs.uk on the particular circumstances if that would be helpful to you.

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How do I record self-isolation due to contact tracing on Health Roster?

From Monday 08 June, there will be an additional category on HealthRoster to record self-isolation for who have been asked to self-isolate due to contact tracing. Please continue to record all staff who are self-isolating, but where they have been requested to do so as a result of communication with either the Trust occupational health team or the national test and trace process, please chose the ‘Test and Trace’ option. The following options will be available from Monday:

  • Special Leave: Medical Self Isolation
  • Special Leave: Medical Self Isolation Test and Trace
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What do I need to do to complete the risk assessment with people I manage?

You should ensure that everyone you manage has reviewed the latest version of the individual staff risk assessment. The date of the assessment and the risk category (where this is not ‘green’) should be recorded on HealthRoster. Instructions for how to do this are included in an appendix in the latest version of the risk assessment. Please do not record the risk group if it is a green risk category.

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I am in the red risk category and am shielding for 12 weeks. Will I be paid my substantive salary for the period that I have to shield?

Yes, substantive staff will be paid in full for their usual pattern for the required period.

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What should I do if one of my staff members lives with someone whose underlying health condition has placed them in the clinically extremely vulnerable group and they were advised to shield?

Consideration should be given to minimising their risk of exposure to Covid-19 (for example, facilitating home working or non-clinical work, if this is feasible). If it is necessary for them to undertake clinical work, the aim should be for it to be in green areas only.

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How do I record 12 week shielding on Healthroster for those in high risk groups?

This absence should be recorded as self isolation on Healthroster/MAPS using the group ‘Other Leave’ and reason ‘Self Iso – Special Leave: Medical Self Isolation.’
Please note that when recording an absence of this length, a warning/error message will come up. This can be ignored and you will be able to record the 12 weeks absence.
Any additional/confidential notes must not be recorded on Healthroster.

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A member of my team has been self isolating – how should this be recorded on Healthroster?
This absence should be recorded on Healthroster/MAPS using the group ‘Other Leave’ and reason ‘Self Iso – Special Leave: Medical Self Isolation.’

The Trust wishes to support staff who have been required to self-isolate, therefore will pay staff for the required period, which will usually be 10 days or 14 days.

Substantive staff will be paid for their usual pattern and bank staff will be paid based on a reference period of a 12 week average.

There may be instances of staff having to self-isolate more than once, in line with the changing government advice.  There is government guidance to support people who need to stay at home.  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance

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I am a manager. How do I record COVID-19 related sickness absence?
All absences should be recorded on Healthroster at the earliest opportunity.  This is particularly important at this time and will help the organisation to manage staffing levels throughout each day and make decisions accordingly.  The guidance for adding sickness absence using Healthroster can be found on Connect using the link below.  Coronavirus can cause a variety of symptoms so the most appropriate ‘Sickness Reason’ should be selected based on the symptoms described by the employee e.g. chest and respiratory problems.

http://connect2/media/2125/Person-Adding-sickness-and-absences/pdf/Adding_sickness_and_absences

There is now a secondary sickness reason available to mark if the sickness is Covid-19 related.

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A member of my team has been self-isolating, but has since become unwell. How should this be recorded on Healthroster?
Please record as self isolation whilst self isolating, but then change to sickness absence when the member of staff reported sick.
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A member of my team is in the “red group of higher risk medical conditions”. What do I need to do?

It is not necessary to seek further clarification if the member of staff has received an NHS shielding letter or text. However, if they have not received but risk assessment indicates that they may be in the ‘red group’, they should contact Occupational Health. With consent to do so, Occupational Health will be able to confirm to you which risk group the member of staff is in. This (but not any additional/confidential notes) should be recorded on Healthroster.

As shielding paused at the beginning of August, the following process should be followed:

The Trust has produced a guidance pack for managers containing helpful information on the return to work process together with the necessary risk assessment questionnaire and other associated templates. This pack can be found here.

Managers should speak to their staff members who have shielding/in the red risk group, to update them on the revised Government guidance and to work through the return to work questionnaire and identify and complete any actions required to facilitate their safe return to work and/or workplace from 01 August 2020.

Staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group should not return to their respective workplaces at CUH until the risk assessment process has been completed and until suitable arrangements have been put in place to ensure their safe return.

Please raise any queries with Divisional Management, Medical Staffing, Employee Relations or Occupational Health teams. Occupational Health and Wellbeing (OH) will happily assist both managers and staff members in addressing any occupational health issues which are identified from the risk assessment process.

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A member of my team is self-isolating long term due to underlying health conditions. We have explored whether they can work from home and they are able and willing to do this. How should this be recorded on Healthroster?

Please record as self-isolation as in the question above, and they will continue to be paid their usual pattern.

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Workforce 31 questions
What do I do if my child/children are sent home from school due to suspected or confirmed Covid-19?

In the event that a child is sent home from school due to suspected/confirmed Covid in their school bubble, all staff must follow the guidance below:

If your child is symptomatic/confirmed Covid positive

  • All members of the household are required to isolate for a period of 14 days.
  • At the end of the 14-day period all members of the household who have remained symptom-free throughout are able to end their isolation and return to work/school/other permitted activities.
  • If any member of the household develops symptoms during the 14-day period, they must isolate for a further period of 10 days (to be taken from the first day that they developed symptoms).

If your child is not symptomatic/confirmed Covid positive

  • Your child is required to isolate for a period of 14 days.
  • Provided that all other members of the household are not symptomatic, they are able to continue to work and undertake other permitted activities.
  • Nevertheless, it is recognised that this may present unexpected childcare challenges. If this is the case then you should discuss this with your line manager at the earliest opportunity so that appropriate arrangements can be put in place to facilitate the provision of childcare and service cover: Covid Carers’ Leave Guidance.

A helpful infograph to simplify this is also available here.

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What is the Trust’s view on staff car sharing to and from work?

As per the national guidance, staff members travelling to work should try not to share a vehicle with those outside your household or support bubble.

If you need to do this, try to:
• share the transport with the same people each time
• keep to small groups of people at any one time
• open windows for ventilation
• travel side by side or behind other people, rather than facing them, where seating arrangements allow
• face away from each other
• consider seating arrangements to maximise distance between people in the vehicle
• clean your car between journeys using standard cleaning products – make sure you clean door handles and other areas that people may touch
• ask the driver and passengers to wear a mask or face covering – the Trust will permit staff members to take a surgical mask with them for their car sharing journey

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As the Government has paused the shielding arrangement in England from 01 August 2020. What does this mean for staff members who are shielding or in the red risk group?

On the 23 June 2020 the Government updated its guidance for people who are shielding due to Covid-19.

Given the significant decrease in the prevalence and rate of COVID-19 infection over the last few weeks, the Government has relaxed shielding guidance in England so that from 06 July shielding individuals are – able to meet in groups of up to 6 people outdoors; no longer need to observe social distancing with other household members, and may form a ‘support bubble’ with one other household.

The Government has also now directed that from the 01 August 2020 shielding will be paused – allowing shielding employees to return to their workplace if deemed Covid-19 safe and where they are unable to work from home. There is further guidance available for the clinically extremely vulnerable.

The Trust has produced a guidance pack for managers containing helpful information on the return to work process together with the necessary risk assessment questionnaire and other associated templates. This pack can be found here.

During July, managers will be speaking to their staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group, to update them on the revised Government guidance and to work through the return to work questionnaire and identify and complete any actions required to facilitate their safe return to work and/or workplace from 01 August 2020.

Staff members who are shielding/in the red risk group should not return to their respective workplaces at CUH until the risk assessment process has been completed and until suitable arrangements have been put in place to ensure their safe return.

Please raise any queries with Divisional Management, Medical Staffing, Employee Relations or Occupational Health teams. Occupational Health and Wellbeing (OH) will happily assist both managers and staff members in addressing any occupational health issues which are identified from the risk assessment process.

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Do I need to quarantine for 14 days after returning to the UK from overseas travel?

If you need to make plans for travelling outside of Covid-19 travel corridors

All staff are reminded that the following guidance remains in place:

If you find that you need to make overseas travel plans to countries outside of the Covid-19 travel corridors which you consider to be essential, please discuss this in advance with your line manager. Your manager will need to ensure that all requested absence can be covered by your team and this will need to include a 14-day period of quarantine on your return. Until your line manager is able to provide this assurance on a case by case basis, you are advised not to book any such travel. Agreement is required for how your 14-day period of quarantine absence will be managed, which may include homeworking, working the time back, taking annual leave or unpaid leave, or a mixture of the available options.

Please be aware that countries on the Covid-19 travel corridor list are changing frequently and with little notice. Employees making plans to travel to countries currently exempt from quarantine on their return home should still discuss and agree with their manager what arrangements will be in place should a 14-day period of quarantine become necessary.

Pay options relating to quarantine

The four options below are subject to annual leave being agreed in advance of travel:

Option 1 – The employee can request to work from home for the quarantine period
Option 2 – If the employee cannot work from home, they can request to be paid as normal and work the time back over a period to be agreed with their manager and before 31 March 2021 at the latest
Option 3 – The employee can take annual leave or request authorised unpaid leave to cover the quarantine period
Option 4 – The employee can request any combination of the above options to cover the quarantine period, which the manager will consider alongside the needs of the service

Following discussion with the employee, should managers require further clarification or advice on how to manage the quarantine period they should contact HR Consult.

Guidance on how to record each of the options on Healthroster is available here.

If you become unwell
Finally, regardless of whether or not staff are returning from trips overseas, should they experience any Covid-19 symptoms, they must contact occupational health to request a test (swab/PCR) and must not attend work until cleared to do so.

In addition to the main publicised symptoms of a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss of, or change in, the normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia), a test should be requested if you have other symptoms suggestive of a viral illness such as; hoarseness, non-persistent cough, nasal discharge/congestion, shortness of breath, wheeze, headache, muscle aches and nausea/vomiting/diarrhoea.

It is also necessary to contact occupational health before you start back to work if you were in contact with a confirmed or suspected case of Covid-19 whilst travelling.

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If I am quarantined as a result of returning to the UK from overseas travel, will I be paid to self isolate for the required period?

Subject to the annual leave being agreed in advance of travel, there are four options available to employees and managers in the treatment of the quarantine period on return to the UK. The four options are as follows:

Option 1 – The employee can request to work from home for the quarantine period.
Option 2 – If the employee cannot work from home, they can request to be paid as normal and work the time back over a period to be agreed with their manager and before 31 March 2021 at the latest.
Option 3 – The employee can request authorised unpaid leave to cover the quarantine period.
Option 4 – In exceptional circumstances the employee can request authorised paid annual leave to cover the quarantine period, e.g. if the employee has a compelling reason for the travel, for example to attend a significant overseas family event or occasion.

The employee can request to their line manager any one or combination of all four options to cover the quarantine period, which the manager will consider alongside the needs of the service.
The position regarding the easing of lockdown restrictions and overseas travel requirements is subject to frequent change, therefore the Trust will continue to review and revise its position in light of each three-weekly Government review. All staff are asked to check the latest advice at www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

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I’m experiencing difficulty in accessing carer support/childcare because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic – how can the Trust support me at this time?

CUH recognises that there is additional anxiety for our staff relating to carer responsibilities.  The Trust will provide additional flexibility for staff during the Covid-19 pandemic in addition to the standard carer’s leave arrangements.

In the first instance, please talk to your line manager about any ideas you have to work flexibly or whether you can work a different shift pattern for a defined period if this could help address any of the above difficulties and also support the needs of the service. Your line manager will review your situation with you and agree how your request for flexibility can be arranged around the needs of the service.

Where you continue to experience any difficulty with accessing carer support/childcare due to your usual arrangement not being available to you (including school provision), there are five options available to help support you, as follows:

  • Option 1 – You can use some of your annual leave entitlement with the agreement of your line manager
  • Option 2 – You can request the extended carers leave option – see details here.
  • Option 3 –You can request to work from home where your work can be carried out in this way; this may mean agreeing that work may have to be done flexibly at different times during the week or a combination of working at home and at base depending upon your circumstances. This should be discussed and agreed with your line manager.
  • Option 4 –If you cannot work from home due to your job role (e.g. you are in a clinical role or a role that requires your presence on site), and where you have already exhausted the extended carers leave, you can request to continue to be paid and mutually agree with your line manager to gradually work back the time taken by 31 March 2021.
  • Option 5 – if you wish to request unpaid leave to support your current circumstances you may do so.

You can make a request to your line manager for one or a combination of the options. Your line manager will review with you and agree how your request can be arranged flexibly around the needs of the service.

You can contact HR Consult on 01223 257000 or hrconsult@addenbrookes.nhs.uk to seek further advice if that would be helpful to you.

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I am suffering financial hardship as a result of the impact of Covid-19 on my personal circumstances and/or my family income. Is it possible to arrange a salary advance to help me at this time, which I could pay back over future months?

We recognise that the national response to the COVID 19 pandemic will result in some of our staff experiencing financial hardship.  This may be due to many factors such as additional, unexpected (and hopefully temporary) costs being incurred, or through the loss of household income. Whatever, the reason, this will undoubtedly cause pressure and anxiety for members of our staff.

In order to support staff that are experiencing financial hardship during these exceptional times, the Trust is able to provide a number of interest free salary advances of up to 4% of the basic annual salary, capped at a maximum of £800. This would then be paid back to the Trust, via salary deductions at an agreed rate, over a maximum 12-month period. The loan scheme is available to staff earning up to £35,000 pro rata and will be running for a limited time only.

It is important that this scheme does not exacerbate financial difficulties and lead to a staff member experiencing unmanageable debt further down the line. Please note that in order to apply for financial hardship support staff will be required to provide details regarding their personal financial circumstances and how their current situation relates to the current COVID pandemic. Any applications made will be managed discreetly.

To apply for this loan please contact staffhardship@addenbrookes.nhs.uk. The interest free loan scheme will run until 31 July 2020.

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I have received a negative test result but been advised by OH to still self-isolate – why is this and what else do I need to do?

The swab tests do not always show a positive result when someone has Covid-19 (false negatives). In view of this OH provide advice on the basis of the symptoms you have had as well as the swab result. You must follow this advice and self-isolate as instructed. You must also notify your manager of your absence.

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I have received a positive COVID test result – what do I need to do?

If you have received a positive test result from OH then you must follow their advice and isolate for the period of time advised. You will also be asked about contacts you have had with other staff in the workplace, in case they need to self-isolate.

If you have received a positive test result from a regional or national test centre (or home test) please notify OH without delay and ensure they are informed. You should follow the advice given and isolate as instructed.

In both situations you must also notify your manager of your absence.

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I am in the red risk category and am shielding for 12 weeks. Will I be paid my substantive salary for the period that I have to shield?

Yes, substantive staff will be paid in full for their usual pattern for the required period.

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Do I need to change my mask every time I have a sip of water/refreshment whilst on the ward?
  • Ideally breaks are to be taken on the ward in an appropriate break area
  • Mask should be changed on each occasion that a refreshment/food break is taken to prevent contamination from the outside of the mask to the face (mouth, nose and eyes) and hands. Any doffing of PPE should be followed by adequate hand hygiene.
  • Please ensure staff hydrate themselves adequately during the allocated break/lunch periods to reduce repeated mask changing and higher likelihood of contamination.
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Can the break and staff rooms on my ward be used for lunch/refreshments and do I need to wear PPE when in them?

Where break rooms or staff rooms are identified as such on a ward, they may be used for lunch/refreshments provided the following conditions are met:

    1. The door to the room is closed
    2. All PPE is doffed prior to using the room (including gloves, apron, cap, eye protection and mask) with adequate hand hygiene
    3. It is possible to doff PPE safely before entering the room (i.e. the room is not entered through a red corridor) – i.e. before the doffing and donning area.
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Should I visit a ward with COVID suspected or positive patients?

Consider whether your visit to a ward (particularly a scenario 1 or 2 area) is necessary or whether advice could be provided remotely. If a patient requires face-to-face review, this should be provided as per clinical need.

Plan your visits where possible to avoid going in and out of scenario 1/2/3 areas multiple times i.e. if you have two patients to see – try to make one visit not two.

If possible within your teams, try to limit cross over of staff between green and red/amber wards.

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Whilst I have been at work, somebody in my household has become symptomatic and is required to self-isolate. If I return home I will be required to self-isolate for 14 days. Can CUH help with alternative accommodation so that I can continue to work?

This may be possible, however, it is essential that you contact occupational health first, so that they can advise whether it is appropriate in your circumstances. If you are advised that it is, please email accommodation@addenbrookes.nhs.uk to discuss potential accommodation options we may be able to offer you. Accommodation available includes studio apartments in town and en-suite rooms at Cambridge colleges.

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I live with a vulnerable family member who has been advised to shield. Can CUH help with alternative accommodation so that I protect my family member from risk?

Please email accommodation@addenbrookes.nhs.uk to discuss potential accommodation options we may be able to offer you.  Accommodation available includes studio apartments in town and en-suite rooms at Cambridge colleges.

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Can I cancel pre-booked annual leave given that my holiday plans have been cancelled?

Unless the Trust makes decisions to cancel staff leave, your annual leave should be taken as booked. It is important for you to take breaks from work at this pressured time, and it is important that annual leave across the Trust does not accrue in a way that could impact on operational effectiveness later in the year.

In addition, please be aware that if you cancel annual leave to request later in the year, it may not be possible to be approved when you wish to take it, and there is still an expectation that you use your leave before the end of the year. Currently the 5 day maximum carry over rule still applies, unless you have been asked to cancel your leave, as per usual Trust policy.

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What should I do if I live with someone whose underlying health condition has placed them in the red at risk category and they have been advised to shield?

Where you live with someone at home who is ‘shielding’ (having received a letter from NHS England, GP or Specialist), you (the staff member) are considered as being in the ‘orange’ risk group of the CUH individual staff risk assessment for Covid-19.

You should discuss with your line manager the recommended control measures for staff that are in the ‘orange’ risk group. It is expected that these discussions will include consideration of whether it is possible for you to continue you in your current role and if not whether is it possible for you to be re-deployed to work in a less high risk area.

As your employer we absolutely do not expect you to put you or your loved ones at risk. Our OH team are available to provide guidance and answer your questions. Should you choose to continue to practice; having fully understood the risk and recommendations then this is your choice. You should complete the risk assessment with your line manager and if choosing to continue to practice, please note this on the assessment form and sign it.

If these options are not practical or appropriate for you and your role, then you may wish to make a request for alternative accommodation which will be arranged and funded by CUH. This is entirely a matter of personal choice and there is no expectation that you will do so, nor will you suffer any detriment if you choose not to do so. All requests for accommodation should be directed to accommodation@addenbrookes.nhs.uk

In the event that any of the options outlined above are not appropriate in your particular circumstances, you will be asked to work from home, and the precise detail of what duties you will undertake from home will be a matter of judgement and agreement between you and your line manager.

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I am having problems with childcare that may prevent me from coming to work. What shall I do?

The Trust recognises that the current COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented and that employees and line managers will need to discuss and agree pragmatic and workable solutions for staff who are affected by school closures.

We want to understand problems staff are facing with childcare, for example with schools unable to take children, cover for the Easter holidays (including bank holidays), or with care at different times of day or days of the week, as well as if staff are facing financial hardship due to having to make alternative arrangements. Please let us know about any of these issues by emailing childcare@addenbrookes.nhs.uk and we will see what we can do to help.

Further information including use of childcare vouchers, is available in the dedicated childcare section.

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I am currently working from home during the lockdown period as it is not essential for me to be on-site. In what circumstances would I be asked to come back on site?

The trust is committed to reducing the footfall in the organisation to maximise safety for patients and to provide the safest working environment for those staff whose roles have to be undertaken on site. As such, the Trust is encouraging working from home if it is not essential to be on site – only those functions and services that cannot be provided remotely and are deemed essential will be delivered from the campus.

However, teams and individuals may be required to come to site in order to ensure essential services are maintained. Staff safety remains our priority and it is important that all staff on site follow social distancing advice.
If you believe yourself to be in an at-risk group, you should complete an individual staff risk assessment and discuss any necessary adjustments to your working arrangements with your Line Manager – we do not want any staff member to take unnecessary risks with their health.

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Further to the guidelines for changing in and out of uniform on site, can towels and shower gels be provided for the staff showers?

The Frank Lee shower facilities, which remain open as part of the staff sanctuary offering, are able to provide towels and shower gel for staff.
Although the level 1 showers remain open, towels and shower gel are not able to be provided there due to operational pressures within the hospital.

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Do I need to contact Occupational Health to return to work?

You do not need to contact occupational health before returning to work. However, you must follow the process detailed below (which varies depending on the area in which you work) and can contact occupational health for advice, if unsure how this applies to you.

If you have had a positive swab or have had symptoms suggestive of COVID-19  but not had a test you can return to work on day 11 after the onset of symptoms, if you feel well and have not had a high temperature for at least 2 days.  If you still have a cough, but are otherwise well, you can return to work (post-viral cough is known to persist for several weeks in some cases).

If you have had a positive swab but not had symptoms (as part of the asymptomatic ward screening programme) you will be advised of a return to work date when informed of your result. This will usually be on day 11 after the swab was taken. However, if symptoms develop after the test you should not return to work until day 11 after the onset of symptoms.

The majority of staff can return to work without a repeat swab, however, we have adopted recent NICE guidance for two distinct groups:

  • Health care workers after confirmed or suspected COVID-19, if they work  directly with children and young people who are immunocompromised.
  • Health care workers after confirmed or suspected COVID-19, if they work directly with haematopoietic stem cell transplantation patients (we have extended this guidance to all staff working in the following areas: F5, G5, C9, C10, D10, Haematology Day Unit, Oncology Day Unit & the Nuffield Hospital).

Staff in these groups can return to work if they have had no symptoms for a week and have had a repeat swab which is negative for COVID 19. If you are in one of these groups you should have been informed by your line manager of this requirement. If you have had a positive swab you must inform the doctor who contacts you about your result of the requirement for a repeat swab. You will then be advised when a repeat swab should be taken. If you are unsure if this applies to your job role please ask your line manager.

If you have self-isolated because a household contact has had symptoms, you must wait until day 15 after the onset of their symptoms before returning to work. If you develop symptoms during this time, you can return to work on day 11 after the onset of your symptoms if you feel well and have not had a high temperature for at least 2 days.  This may lead to the period of self-isolation being shorter or longer than 14 days.  If your household contact has a test which is positive the same rules apply. If their test is negative, occupational health will advise as to when you can return. If their test is undertaken as part of the CUH staff testing programme this advice will be given when the result is emailed. If the test is undertaken elsewhere you must contact occupational health before you return to work.

 

 

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What do I do if I have been in contact with a possible or confirmed COVID-19 patient with symptoms?

If you have had contact with a COVID-19 patient but were using personal protective equipment (PPE) appropriate for your work area you can remain at work. However, you should:

  • not attend work if you develop symptoms while at home (off-duty), and notify your line manager as soon as possible
  • self-isolate and immediately inform your line manager if symptoms develop whilst at work

If you have close contact with a COVID-19 patient but were not using personal protective equipment (PPE) appropriate for your work area you should contact your line manager and occupational health, as it may be necessary for you to self-isolate. Close contact is defined as:

  • having face-to-face contact with someone (less than 1 metre away)
  • spending more than 15 minutes within 2 metres of someone (cumulative time in a 24 hour period; for example, one 15 minute period or three 5 minute periods during a shift)
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I feel unwell (general sickness or Covid-19 related) and I am unable to come to work due to sickness, what should I do?

You should notify your line manager at the earliest opportunity and normal sickness absence reporting and management procedures will continue to apply. Employees will be required to self-certify for their sickness absence of between one and seven days. For absence of more than seven consecutive days employees are required to submit a fit note from their GP. The Trust recognises that GP practices will be under significant pressure during the Covid-19 pandemic period and therefore if you have any issues obtaining a fit note please inform your line manager. For substantive staff, payment will be in accordance with national terms and conditions.

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How do I know if I qualify for statutory sick pay?
To qualify for statutory sick pay (SSP) a worker must earn on average £118 per week.  SSP is paid for each calendar day that the employee is off sick (or self-isolating) regardless of whether they were due to work that day or not.   Agency workers will need to contact their agencies to claim SSP.
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Following risk assessment it has been decided that I should be temporarily redeployed to another area. Will I be paid my substantive salary or will I be paid based on the band and hours of the new role?
The Trust would like to ensure that no employees are financially worse off as a consequence of having to be redeployed during the COVID-19 pandemic period. The Trust will therefore pay employees as they would have been paid in their previous role, using a 12 week average where there is a flexible pattern.
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I have recently moved and want to check my details are up to date. How can I check this?
You can check your details are up to date and make any required changes through the MyESR application.  Details of how to download the app are on Connect. http://connect2/article/5873/MyESR-App
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I am not unwell but need to self-isolate. How should I notify the Trust, and should I be working from home?
Employees should phone and / or email your line manager as soon as possible.

Where it is possible to work from home when in self-isolation, this will be arranged in communication with/ agreement with your line manager. Your can also keep up to date with mandatory and essential for role training via DOT using the link below – even if you are currently in date, as it will extend your compliance later in the year.

https://learning.addenbrookes.nhs.uk/login/index.php

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I need to self-isolate. What should I do?
Employees should phone and / or email their line manager as soon as possible.  Where it is possible to work from home in self-isolation, they should do so in communication with/ agreement with their line manager. This absence should be recorded on Healthroster/MAPS using the group ‘Other Leave’ and reason ‘Self Iso – Special Leave: Medical Self Isolation.’

The Trust wishes to support staff who have been required to self-isolate, therefore will pay staff for the required period, which will usually be 10 days or 14 days.

Substantive staff will be paid for their usual pattern and bank staff will be paid based on a reference period of a 12 week average.

There may be instances of staff having to self-isolate more than once, in line with the changing government advice.  There is government guidance to support people who need to stay at home.  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance

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What do I do if I have been in contact at home with an individual with symptoms of COVID-19?

If a member of your household has symptoms of COVID-19 you must self-isolate, only working if you can do so at home. If at all possible the individual with symptoms should have a swab test. See https://www.cuhstaffportal.co.uk/testing/covid-19-testing-for-staff/ on staff testing for information as to how to arrange a test. It is not necessary or appropriate for you or anyone else in the household to request a test, unless they develop symptoms.

If your household contact:

  • Does not have a test – you must self isolate for 14 days. If you develop symptoms you must self isolate for 10 days from their onset (this may make the 14 day period longer or shorter) and only return to work if your symptoms (other than residual cough and/or altered taste/smell) have resolved and you have not had an elevated temperature.
  • Has a positive test – you must self isolate for 14 days. If you develop symptoms you must self isolate for 10 days from their onset (this may make the 14 day period longer or shorter) and only return to work if your symptoms (other than residual cough and/or altered taste/smell) have resolved and you have not had an elevated temperature.
  • Has a negative test – you must contact occupational health who will advise you when you can return to work (if the test is undertaken by the CUH staff testing service you will be contacted automatically)
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Will all admin and non-clinical staff be required to work from home for the foreseeable future due to the COVID-19 outbreak?

Managers will be reviewing their business continuity requirements in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and will be having discussions with their respective teams about the appropriate working models for business continuity which may include any combination of – workplace and/or home working. Staff may also be asked to consider deployment to support other areas within the Trust. If this is the case appropriate training will be provided.

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Work Reconfiguration 12 questions
What sources of support are there for staff?

Details of staff support can be found on the CUH Staff Portal (https://www.cuhstaffportal.co.uk/healthandwellbeing/employee-support-and-assistance-2/ )

In summary support is available through Occupational Health, Health Assured (the Trust’s Employee Assistance Programme), your line manager, Trade Unions and Chaplaincy.

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How will staff be communicated with?

Your line manager will discuss your individual circumstances with you.  More general information regarding the reconfiguration is available through the staff portal and the daily Covid Bulletin.

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I have annual leave booked, will this be affected?

Wherever possible existing annual leave bookings will be honoured.  If changes are required due to service needs, then reasonable notice will be provided.

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Will my pay be affected?

Pay should not be adversely affected by the ward reconfiguration.  In the event that average monthly pay is adversely affected the Trust’s Protection of Pay and Conditions of Service policy will apply.

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I am required to have a Certificate of Sponsorship in order to undertake my role. Will the reconfiguration affect this?

The only change that we would need to consider in relation to Certificates of Sponsorship is where contracted  hours  are reduced. The Trust does not anticipate staff hours being reduced, however, if your hours may change please seek advice from Recruitment

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What will it mean for my working pattern?

Wherever possible, existing patterns will be honoured.  If changes to working patterns need to be made this will be discussed with you on an individual basis.  The roster for your new area will be shared with you as soon as it is available.

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What additional training will be provided if I move to a different specialty?

A training needs analysis has been undertaken which has identified the key competences required for each clinical area and how these will be delivered.  Training will be provided as required.

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Will I be asked to move ward?

As a result of the reconfiguration it will be necessary for a high number of some staff to move wards.   Decisions as to which staff will be required to move will be based on the Covid status of the ward, the outcome of the individual Covid Staff Risk Assessment, skill mix and specialist knowledge/skills.  Every effort will be made to minimise the impact for individual members of staff wherever possible.

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How long will this configuration be in place for?

The ward configuration will be reviewed in September 2020 in order to plan for winter.  This may mean that further changes are made.

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Will my line manager change?

If as a result of the ward reconfiguration either you or your line manager move to a different ward your line manager will consequently change.

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Does this mean changes to the Divisional structure?

There are currently no planned changes to the Divisional structure.  However this is a cross Divisional project with input from all Divisions.

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What timeframe is the Trust working to for the Ward reconfiguration?

The affected wards are being reconfigured with a deadline of 22 June 2020.  A comprehensive implementation plan has been drawn up.  This is, however, dependent upon capacity being released to enable patient cohorts to move to their new wards. This is being reviewed on a twice-daily basis.

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