MANAGING COLD AND FLU SYMPTOMS WHEN CLIENTS LIVE IN THEIR OWN HOMES
With the ever-present possibility of infection by COVID-19 it is imperative that all care is taken to reduce the spread of potential infection. This must begin with the first signs of cold and flu symptoms.
This is not a precise, procedural document but rather a guide to let staff know what sorts of strategies might be used. Cold and flu is ever present in the winter months and throughout spring, with heightened hay fever symptoms.
When providing support to a client who is showing cold and flu symptoms, the following steps should be followed to reduce the likelihood of carrying and passing on infection:
- Use a mask while providing support. Keep a supply of masks to use in these situations and use them in line with the Department of Health guidelines on mask use
- As much as is practical, practise social distancing
- Wash/sanitise hands frequently
- Encourage the client to call their doctor for advice
- Encourage the client to have a COVID test
- Encourage the client to reduce their activities in the community
- Carry out full COVID cleaning as per the deep cleaning guide
- If a client must be transported in a vehicle, observe distancing as much as possible, wear a mask, ask the client to wear a mask and deep clean the vehicle as per the Vehicle Cleaning and Sign Off directions in each vehicle
- Inform the Service Coordinator, they will inform other staff/family and provide monitoring of client wellbeing
- Dispose of the mask by placing it in a plastic bag, tying the bag and taking it with you when you leave for disposal in a closed lid bin. Once finished, immediately clean hands with alcohol-based hand sanitiser
It is imperative that NWSS staff do not carry sickness to the people we support. Therefore, do not go to work if sick with cold and flu symptoms.