Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Guidance

UPDATE 08.09.20

As of 6pm on Tuesday 8th September 2020, Caerphilly County Borough was put into a localised lockdown due to a rise in coronavirus cases within the area.  Despite the restrictions, I am permitted to continue working with all of my existing safety measures in place.  However, for the duration of the lockdown, I will only be permitted to see clients from within the county borough.  Sadly, I know that this means that many of my existing clients will be unable to attend for their sessions.  Please contact me if you have any queries about these changes.

I am continuing to offer remote treatment options for those who are unable to attend in person at present.  Please contact me for more information.

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After being forced to close my doors in March due to the Coronavirus pandemic, I am delighted to announce that I am now back open for business!  In accordance with government guidance, I have been required to put in place a number of changes on reopening to ensure that my business is “Covid-secure”.  Please see below for more information.

Your safety and wellbeing is paramount to me.  As required by law, I have completed a full Risk Assessment of my Treatment Room and working practices in light of coronavirus.  My Risk Assessment is available to view on request and a signed copy of my government “STAYING COVID-19 SECURE IN 2020” poster will be on display in my Treatment Room to demonstrate my compliance and “Covid-secure” status.

THERAPIES CURRENTLY AVAILABLE 
Following advice from the Welsh and UK Governments and my Professional Association, I will currently be unable to offer certain treatments due to safety issues/ the requirement to work in the “high risk zone” (the area immediately in front of a client’s face).

I am delighted to now be offering the following Treatments:
* Foot Reflexology
* Reiki
* Thought Field Therapy

Unfortunately, I will not be able to offering the following Treatments for the foreseeable future:
* Facial Reflexology
* Hand Reflexology
* Indian Head Massage
* Swedish Massage
I will update this guidance as and when the government guidelines change to allow these treatments.

I will continue to offer remote, videocall sessions for those clients who are shielding, unable to make sessions in person, or would simply prefer not to attend a session in the current climate. Please get in touch if you would like to book a remote session.

TREATMENT DURATIONS & NEW TREATMENT STRUCTURE
In line with government guidance, I am required to restrict my treatment times to that which is strictly necessary to carry out the treatment itself, in order to reduce the time spent in close contact with clients in my Treatment Room. All sessions will be limited to a maximum of 90 minutes on the premises.

Professional Associations are advising that it is best practice to conduct the consultation (catch-up chat) at the beginning of each session, along with the new requirement of a Covid-19 Client Risk Assessment, remotely via telephone or videocall in advance of the session.  In order to do this, for existing clients, I will arrange a treatment time and will ask you to initially wait in your car on arrival so that I can call you (via either voice or videocall, whichever is your preference) to conduct the catch-up chat and Risk Assessment.  Once completed, I will welcome you onto the premises for your session.  The telephone call will form part of your session time so I will endeavour to conduct these calls as swiftly as possible in order to give you the maximum time possible in the Treatment Room.  For new clients the full initial Consultation will be carried out over call/ videocall at a mutually convenient time prior to the treatment day and then your Risk Assessment completed on the day of your treatment at your allotted treatment time.

I will also need to keep to strict appointment times as I am required to allow a gap of 30 minutes between client sessions in order to avoid interaction between clients and to allow me to thoroughly clean and ventilate the premises between sessions.

I thank you in advance for your understanding regarding treatment times.

NHS WALES TEST, TRACE & PROTECT
Please note that as a condition of reopening, I am required to record names/contact numbers of all clients attending for appointments.  Should I be contacted by NHS Wales Test, Trace & Protect service, I will be obliged to share these details to help track and control the spread of Coronavirus.  Thus by booking your session, this is deemed consent to the capture and sharing of your data in this way if required.  This is in accordance with GDPR laws and my own Privacy Notice (which state that data may be legitimately shared with a third party for legal purposes).

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NEW GUIDELINES FOR CLIENT APPOINTMENTS – Important information for clients on what to expect when attending your appointment

* Pre-treatment Consultation and Covid-19 Risk Assessment – From reopening, I will be required to complete a short Pre-Treatment Risk Assessment with all clients before each session, in order to check for symptoms of and/or possible exposure to Covid-19.  The Risk Assessment will also identify other circumstances when treatment may not be appropriate, such as if clients are currently classed as “extremely clinically vulnerable” and previously required to shield.  It is important that you familiarise yourself with the Pre-Treatment Client Risk Assessment questions when booking your session, as, should you have any risk factors, I may not be able to proceed with your treatment on the day.  Find out more about the Risk Assessment.

As mentioned above, I will ask you to arrive at your appointment time, park your vehicle and then wait in your car for me to call you to conduct your consultation (catch-up) and Covid-19 Risk Assessment before coming in for your session.  I can call via voice or videocall, whichever is your preference.  Once we have finished our call, I will welcome you onto the premises.

* Washing Your Hands – All clients will be asked to wash their hands on entering and leaving the premises. The bathroom will be thoroughly cleaned immediately prior to your visit and stocked with liquid soap, hand sanitizer (if required) and a clean flannel for each client to use to dry their hands (flannels should be placed in the pedal bin provided after use).

Hand Sanitizer Stations – In addition to the bathroom facilities, additional hand sanitizer will be provided on the coffee table in the Treatment Room and can be used as required.

* Shoes – I respectfully ask that all clients please take off their shoes on arrival, and place in the shoe basket by the door.

* Storing Your Personal Belongings Safely – In my Treatment Room there will be a large plastic zip bag in which you can place all personal belongings – coat, bag, phone etc – for the duration of the treatment.  This bag will be thoroughly cleaned after each client.

* Face Coverings (updated 08.09.20) – Due to the recent increase in Coronavirus cases in Caerphilly County Borough, the Welsh Government has now made it mandatory for everyone over the age of 11 to wear face coverings in indoor settings within the borough, this includes complementary therapy settings.

This means that all clients will be required to wear a suitable face covering for the duration of their session, unless medically exempt.  I recognise that some people may be unable to wear a face covering due to a medical condition or disability.  Additionally, face masks are not required for children under the age of 11 and should never be worn by children aged 2 or under.  Should you be unable to wear a face covering to your session, I respect your personal rights and reasons,  however please note that I may need to alter my positioning when treating you to help protect myself from working nearer to the “high risk zone” (the area directly in front of your face).

I ask that all clients bring their own clean, new (or freshly washed) covering from home, leave it in place for the duration of your time on the premises, and ensure you follow the guidance as to its safe and proper use (including washing or sanitising your hands before putting it on and avoiding touching the covering whilst you are wearing it).  More information on face coverings and their proper use can be found on the Government website.

The guidance on what PPE I as the therapist should wear is also subject to change.  At the present time, the Welsh Government advises that therapists wear a clear plastic visor when working with clients, with the addition of a face mask when working nearer to the “high risk zone”.  However, for your safety, I will always wear both a face mask and clear visor for the duration of all hands-on therapy treatments.

* Payments – The Government has advised all businesses to endeavour to take remote payments for goods/services as far as possible to reduce the handling of money.  However, I know that some clients would prefer to continue to pay for their treatments in cash.  As such, I will accept payments via the following methods for the foreseeable future:
Secure Payment Link sent by text prior to your session – When booking your appointment, I will send you a confirmation text confirming your session time, to which I will attach a secure payment request link to allow you to pay for your treatment by card, should you wish. If you choose to pay by link, please make this payment before attending your session.
Card Reader at your session – I will continue to accept card payments using my hand held card reader when you come for your session.  My card reader will be sanitised between each use for your safety.
Cash at your session – I will continue to accept cash payments for those who choose not to pay by card.  However, to ensure safety, I will not handle cash at the session, nor offer change.  If you would like to pay by cash, please place the correct money for your session in an envelope clearly marked with your name and date of treatment and leave it on the coffee table in the Treatment Room at the end of your session.

* Drinking water – Current advice states that clients should bring their own water to sessions (ideally in a reusable bottle).  Should a client not bring their own water bottle, I will provide water in a recyclable paper cup (which will be carefully stored for 72 hours and then recycled, as per waste disposal guidelines).

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CHANGES TO MY TREATMENT ROOM/ WORKING PRACTICES

In addition to the above, I have made further changes to my Treatment Room and working practices in order to keep you safe, including:
* Introducing an increased cleaning schedule, including cleaning in between each client and at the start and end of each day. This includes thorough cleaning of the Treatment Room, bathroom area, waiting room area, my treatment bed, and all frequently touched surfaces such as chairs, door handles, doorbell, taps, soap and sanitizer dispensers, card machine, pens etc.  Obviously, the strictest hygiene is always a priority for clinical therapists, however, these standards will be even more stringent in light of the current situation.
* Washing all bed linen, blankets, towels and pillow covers between each client.
* Making some changes to the layout and decoration of my Treatment room such as removing a number of decorative ornaments in order to make it safer and easier to clean. However, please be rest assured that it is still the beautiful, tranquil and nurturing space it always was.
* Waiting Area – I will temporarily be removing my waiting area facility as I cannot ensure that a 2 metre social distance is maintained between clients in this area.  I ask that clients please wait in their vehicles until their appointment time.  I will call you on the telephone at your appointment time to conduct your catch-up chat and Client Risk Assessment, before welcoming you onto the premises.
* Room Ventilation – Scientific research shows that the spread of Covid-19 is slowed significantly outdoors and in well ventilated spaces. In light of this, I will be ensuring good ventilation to my Treatment Room and other areas used by clients by opening windows during and after sessions.

I hope that you find this information helpful and reassuring.  If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me. I will be happy to answer any questions or address any concerns you may have. Please be reassured that whilst I will be undertaking these important safety measures, it is also very important to me that the serenity of your treatment and our therapeutic relationship are maintained as usual.  I will do everything I can to ensure the balance between compliance and your relaxation and wellbeing.  I look forward to welcoming you back to Optimum health & wellbeing!

(Last Updated 29.07.2020)