The opening of care homes for visitors and relatives is having a positive effect on residents’ wellbeing and happiness.
Many providers have been installing visitor pods and summerhouses to ensure safe but distanced visits.
DWA Architects has been designing these buildings, and architect Lauren Di Pietro has some expert advice for providers.
“The principle is that the pods can be built offsite to avoid disturbance to an existing care home and avoid the risk of site operatives transferring infection to vulnerable residents,” she said.
“Each pod can be designed to cater for the need of residents and staff. They can include hidden integrated features, such as the sliding glazed screen to separate the building into two sides with each having its own entrance and WC facilities.”
She added that a pod should have separate access doors for resident and visitors to avoid virus spread, while the materials used for internal surfaces should be easy to clean.
“A focus on resident wellbeing is even more important than ever to combat feelings of anxiety, uncertainty, restlessness and disconnection,” said Di Pietro. “The lockdown rules caused significant isolation of care home residents and, although visitors are slowly being reintroduced into homes, there is still a worry over infections continuing to spread or future strains that are resistant to vaccinations.”
The latest government guidance relating to care home visits can be found here
More from DWA Architects here.