My Options - COVID-19 service updates

The government has announced a further lockdown for England

Everyone is required to stay at home, except for a few very specific purposes: 

  • essential shopping
  • for work, if you absolutely cannot work from home
  • exercise
  • to seek medical assistance (including to get a Covid-19 test).

Visit the GOV.UK website for guidance on the national lockdown: stay at home


My Options logo

Our top priority is the safety and wellbeing of the people who access our services and our staff.

During these unprecedented times we have had to review our services to meet Government COVID guidelines.

We, like other care and support providers, continue to consider and plan new ways of working to meet the strict COVID Government guidance around social distancing and health and safety. This means currently access to buildings, transport and community facilities is not the same as it was before COVID.

This webpage will explain how each of the services provided by My Options is currently operating in line with the Government COVID guidance. The page will be updated regularly but if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the team on 01952 381317 or my.options@telford.gov.uk
 

We are committed to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our customers and staff, and we are  continuing to  adapt our services  to  minimise the impact lock down has. Whilst we are confident that all of our services will continue, following the latest Government and Public Health England guidance we are aware of the increased infection rate of the virus and therefore there will be some changes to some of our services. These changes will be communicated to those customers that are directly affected.

Due to the variety of services on offer, each person who will be accessing a service will be receiving a personalised letter explaining what their new service looks like. The letter will also detail any requirements from them as well as highlighting any health and safety aspects.

Extensive risk assessments have been undertaken for the buildings, people accessing the buildings, our team and for all of the activities that will be undertaken. Should you require more information please contact My Options. This includes ensuring that our team are wearing the appropriate Personal Protective Equipment at all times.

Download the PPE guide for community health and social care settings: what PPE to wear and when – an illustrative guide.

Lakewood Court continues to provide a full service to its residents. However, visits are restricted to essential visits only, in line with the latest Government and Public Health England advice.

Due to the COVID Government Guidance we are unable to currently provide the same services that we did before COVID. Following on from Care Act reviews with individuals, undertaken by the Learning Disability & Autism Social Work Team, the service adapted its offer to meet needs whilst adhering to the Government Guidance.

Currently My Options is able to offer the following Day Activity Provision:

  • My Options Connect - Virtual Group Activity Programmes focussing on developing skills. This includes using technology safely, independent living skills, looking after yourself, getting active, connecting with friends and local communities and Stepping in Work.
  • Community Outreach – individual and group direct support helping individuals to develop skills, independence and community participation. This could be in the home, community or workplace and can involve linking people, family carers and communities. Please note that due to COVID groups are a maximum of 6 people in a bubble, including our team members.
  • Building Based Activities – supporting people with the highest level of needs within Southwood and the Wellbeing Centre. Due to the current COVID Government Guidance, there are limited places available as the number of people who can be in the buildings has reduced significantly. People who are attending this provision have been identified and assessed through individual care reviews with the Learning Disability & Autism Social Work Team.
  • Stepping into Work – this is currently operating virtually through the My Options Connect platform.

We are continually reviewing the services in line with the latest Government COVID guidance. We also continue to look at how we can extend the activities and support we can provide in response to feedback from people that use the services, family carers and referrals from social work teams.

Skills Hub

We continue to work with our health and safety advisors and a number of other agencies in relation to our three building bases. This requires significant planning, adaptation and risk assessment, in relation to both the buildings, the number and needs of people accessing the service, many of whom find themselves among groups of people who are most at risk, family carers and staff, in order to adhere to Government guidance, ensure safety, and minimise risk to all.

We have adopted a phased approach looking firstly to those buildings that can more readily accommodate required social distancing, handwashing and the appropriate facilities in order to be COVID compliant. Whilst we have been able to open Southwood and the Wellbeing Centre, although for a very limited number of people, the Skills Hub has proved more of a challenge due to its building structure, layout and what it was used for. We are working with our Health and Safety Advisors and the Council’s Building Improvement Team (BiT) to be able to open the building. However, the building will not be able to support the same services it provided before COVID, due to the necessary restrictions and we would only be able to undertake tasks and activities that do not pose an unacceptable COVID risk.

TWIGS

We are currently working with our health and safety advisors to reintroduce the TWIGS service that is COVID compliant. However, it will not be able to undertake activities at the homes of our existing TWIGS customers at this time but we are looking at options for undertaking similar activities in COVID secure environments.

Due to the COVID restrictions the My Options Young People’s Service (YPS) initially suspended the vast majority of the services that they offered. The only service that continued, in a limited manner, was our PA2A service which supports young people to access activities with one to one or two to one support in the community or at home.

Since the lockdown began, we have been working very closely with the Children with Disabilities team (CWD) to provide additional PA2A support and the Stay & Play Scheme at The Bridge school, to those families and young people that they have determined are in the greatest need, we are also providing a limited number of activities for the same group of young people during the October half term. In addition to working jointly with CWD, we have worked closely with the local schools to ensure that our services support the bubbles that they have introduced to protect the young people, we also did this as the majority of our team are employed at those schools.

We are now in the process of looking at reintroducing some of our other services and activities, including the possibility of delivering supported skiing, swimming sessions and sports sessions. However, the current Government and Public Health England’s guidelines and restrictions, mean services will look very different and will have reduced capacity. This is to ensure that we reduce the risk of COVID transmission in line with the Government’s requirements.

We are working closely with people who use our service, families, commissioners, CWD and the wider Council and community partners to continue to not only adapt our service delivery but also look to new and improved ways in which to provide our services both during this challenging time and in the future.

Our Shared Lives carers continue to provide long term and respite services, whilst complying with all of the current Government COVID guidelines.

X Roads continues to provide a service adhering to Government COVID Guidelines, however, visiting to X Roads is restricted. For further information please contact the team on 01952 381317 or my.options@telford.gov.uk.

Community Support and Help at Hand continue to provide their services, whilst complying with all of the current Government COVID guidelines.

We recognise that with the current COVID 19 restrictions it is difficult for us to get together directly so we have put in place several options:

  • Share your views and ideas with us by email to LDengagement@telford.gov.uk;
  • Share your views and ideas with us by letter to Deb Williams, My Options, Ground Floor, A Wing, Darby House, Lawn Central, Telford, TF3 4JA;
  • Speak to us directly in a one to one telephone appointment with either Deb Williams (Service Delivery Manager My Options), or Andrew Meredith – to book an appointment telephone 01952 381317.

The Learning Disability Engagement is also a way to tell us what you think about the provision for adults with learning disabilities across the Borough (including health, community provisions, employment and impact of COVID). For more information about how to get involved please visit www.telford.gov.uk/LD before 11 November 2020.

Due to the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic we are constantly reviewing our service to ensure they meet the current Government guidelines. To make sure you aware of any changes during this time we have set up this new web-page to provide any updates as and when they happen, as well as providing a series of frequently asked questions.

We will also continue to keep you updated through direct communication like this and through social media avenues.

My Options

Telephone: 01952 381317
Email: my.options@telford.gov.uk


Family Connect

Telephone: 01952 385385
Email: familyconnect@telford.gov.uk


Learning Disability and Autism team

Telephone: 01952 385577


Carer Emergency Response

Telephone: 0800 652 0442


Carers Centre

Telephone: 01952 240209


Helpline for Urgent Medical Advice including Shropdoc

Telephone: 111


Out of Hours Emergency Social Work Team

Telephone: 01952 676500


Mental Health Support

Telephone: 0300 124 0361


Branches

The local voluntary organisation supporting mental health

Telephone: 01952 899205