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Care homes group invests £1m in garden pods to help residents see relatives during pandemic

PUBLISHED: 14:49 24 September 2020 | UPDATED: 10:05 28 September 2020

Inisde Healthcare Homes' new garden pod at Fornham House, Bury St Edmunds  Picture: HEALTHCARE HOMES

Inisde Healthcare Homes' new garden pod at Fornham House, Bury St Edmunds Picture: HEALTHCARE HOMES

healthcare homes

Residents across care homes in East Anglia and the south of England are being kept in face-to-face contact with loved ones through lockdown – thanks to a £1m investment.

Healthcare Homes' garden pod at Haughgate House, Woodbridge  Picture: HEALTHCARE HOMESHealthcare Homes' garden pod at Haughgate House, Woodbridge Picture: HEALTHCARE HOMES

Healthcare Homes Group, based in Ardleigh, near Colchester, has sunk nearly £1m into creating new garden “visiting pods” so residents can see visitors safely during the coronavirus pandemic.

After taking the “tough” decision to cease all but essential or compassionate exceptional visits prior to the national lockdown in March, the business looked for ways to keep its 2,000 residents in touch with family members.

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The temporary garden structures – now installed in many of the group’s 45 homes – are equipped with a see-through screen to separate visitors from residents and an intercom to make communicating easy. They are also equipped with heating when required, insulation and nurse call buttons.

Group estates director David Smith said the feedback from relatives and residents had been “absolutely wonderful”.

“The impact on wellbeing that social distancing and shielding can have is something we take extremely seriously. We needed a solution, and our garden visiting pods have provided just this,” he added.


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