Hertfordshire County Council reopen care homes to help fight COVID-19

Published: 12 May 2020

Hertfordshire County Council is temporarily reopening two of its formerly closed care homes as part of its response to COVID-19.

The Fairways in Watford opened today (12 May) for patient referrals and Nevetts in Buntingford is due to open later this month. Together they will eventually provide over 40 beds each and both sites staffed by 45 employees.

The reopening of these homes is for patients who are ready to be discharged from hospital but are not quite ready to go home and look after themselves. For some it may be that they are in recovery but still need some support before they can go home. For others, the homes will provide a place to live if their current care arrangements at home have had to be stopped temporarily.

The care homes will be staffed by redeployed or returning Hertfordshire County Council employees, and new recruits, who also helped with the setup of both homes.

The Fairways has received volunteers from the nearby school, Merchant Taylor, who have made visors for the staff. Retailer B&Q donated flowers and plants for the garden, with local volunteers coming down at the weekends to plant and make the garden look nice. Both homes have and continue to receive hundreds of books and videos in donations from the local community.

Local councillors for the care homes and the Watford MP paid a visit, all helping out where they could and expressing their gratitude for the proactive efforts of all the volunteers and staff.

Richard Roberts, Cabinet Member for Adult Care and Health said: “We want to ensure our residents have access to the best possible care when leaving hospital so they can make a full recovery.

“We have had a great response from previous employees and redeployed staff to work within the homes. To get the homes ready for use in such a short space of time, at such an excellent standard is a credit to the team involved. The response from local Councillors and communities to support these projects has been overwhelming.”