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13th December 2020

Care home visits: A glimmer of hope

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Michele Davis suffered a catastrophic head injury in December 2018. After almost a year in hospital, she was moved to a specialist care home where she was visited by her husband for hours every day and also had frequent visits from her son and parents. The care home restricted visits during the first lockdown, but was able to relax the rules somewhat over the summer.  However, tougher restrictions were later re-introduced.

Michele moved to another care home, where she had a ground floor room. Her husband was able to visit outside her window. However, the care home’s policy was that this was only possible for the first two weeks of her stay, when Michele was in quarantine.

Michele’s husband brought litigation on her behalf, arguing that the lack of contact was detrimental to Michele’s mental health. In a promising judgment, the Court of Protection held that although the pandemic necessitated individual liberties giving way, the individual needs of care home residents still had to be considered. The Court ordered that visits continue to be allowed until the full hearing and was hopeful that the progress on developing a vaccine and improvements in testing would render the litigation moot.

As we head into the festive period, our thoughts are with all those in care homes and their families. We hope that the Court’s optimism is well-placed and improved conditions are not far around the corner.

If you need advice on making arrangements for elderly or vulnerable relatives, please contact one of our team using the details below.

Alexandra Francis on 01223 447422 or click here to email Alexandra.
Alexandra Svennevik on 01604 463342 or click here to email Alexandra.

Case Citation: Davies v Wigan Council [2020] 11 WLUK 328