Coronavirus

Coronavirus Information

St Helena helps local people face incurable illness and bereavement. As an organisation, we are taking reasonable steps to protect those using our services, as well as those working and volunteering at our sites.

We are continually monitoring the Coronavirus situation and taking sensible and necessary precautions to protect our patients, families, staff, volunteers and supporters in line with the latest advice provided by the Department of Health and Social Care, NHS England and Public Health England.

The symptoms of Coronavirus may be more severe in people with weakened immune systems, older people and those with long-term and life-threatening illnesses.

The Suffolk and north east Essex integrated care system has launched a new website which aims to offer residents a single, comprehensive and accurate source of information about Covid-19 and vaccinations. 

The site will be updated regularly and contains the very latest information on the ongoing vaccination programme in order to give people clarity on this major situation including:

  • Most up-to-date information on who is eligible to receive the vaccine
  • Latest details of locations of vaccination centres
  • Updates on progress of the local vaccination programme
  • Accurate information on efficacy and safety of the vaccines
  • A Q&A section covering the most commonly asked questions
  • Interviews with people who have received the vaccine and staff who are delivering the programme

Click here to visit the website.

Services update

St Helena is as dedicated as ever to providing the best possible care and support to our patients and families across north Essex. Below is a brief overview of the changes we have made to our services. You can also read more here

The Hospice; essential community nursing visits; and SinglePoint, our 24/7 advice line and Virtual Ward, continue to run as normal. We are closely monitoring and following all Government advice, and we have plans in place to ensure we can provide the best possible care to our patients and families, whilst keeping them, and our staff and volunteers, protected.

However, in order to protect our vulnerable patients from the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we have temporarily made some changes to some of our other services.

Day Therapies Groups that are usually run at the Joan Tomkins Centre in Colchester and Tendring Centre in Clacton are suspended as of Wednesday 18th March 2020.

One to one bereavement and counselling support that is usually also run at these sites will be offered over the phone instead of face to face. We are also cancelling all Bereavement Drop-in Groups held every Wednesday at our Books, Brew & Boutique, and once a month on a Saturday at our Learning and Development Centre.

We are reducing the number of Hospice in the Home visits we make to patients and families. Instead, our community clinical nurse specialists will be providing support over the phone, unless it is an emergency.

If you are a patient in the community and your circumstances have changed and you need our support, please do call SinglePoint, any time 24/7 on 01206 890 360.

Visiting The Hospice

Updated 17th May 2021

Please note, restrictions around visiting vary if the patient you are visiting is at the end of life, or if they have tested positive for Covid-19.

Our visitors are a highly valued part of Hospice life and bring great comfort to the patients, but at this difficult time, we are having to make the right decisions to protect our vulnerable patients, the staff caring for them and loved ones' who are visiting. 

All visits must be pre-arranged with Myland Hall Main Reception. Please call 01206 845 566 to do this. Please remember, do not visit if you are feeling unwell.

[Update 5th July 2021] 
Visiting the hospice for the purposes of visiting the memory tree, book of remembrance or the multi-faith chapel is permitted only on weekday mornings, an appointment must be made in advance by calling hospice reception on 01206 845 566. Visitors will be required to sanitise their hands and wear a face mask unless exempt. This will be reviewed after 19th July. 

We know this is difficult. However, our patients are in the most vulnerable group of people that makes them more at risk of catching Covid-19 and more at risk of dying from it. Therefore, we need to ensure we are protecting them, as well as protecting our staff to allow them to remain well to continue to care for the people you love.

Below you will find our general visiting guidelines; guidelines for visiting a patient who has tested positive for Covid-19 and guidelines for visiting a patient who is in the last days of life. 

We thank you for your understanding and co-operation at this challenging time.

Please be advised, our staff will be adhering to wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) for various reasons in order to maintain patient safety. There may also be situations when visitors are asked to wear PPE to protect themselves and the public.

We kindly ask that all visitors respect our staff and the decision to suspend and restrict visiting at this time.

Before visiting, please ensure you are compliant with the latest government guidance which can be found here.

If you have any questions or concerns please ask to speak to the nurse in charge.

General visiting guidelines

The rules outlined below are designed to protect our patients by adhering to social distancing guidance and limiting the number of people moving through the ward at any one time:

  • Visiting will be permitted between the hours of 3pm and 7.30pm each day.
  • Visits are limited to one visit of a maximum of 4 people per patient per day (*exceptions may be made for patients at the very end of life and minors who wish to visit– please speak to the nurse in charge*)
  • We ask you to limit your visit to a maximum of 90 minutes. If you do not leave at the end of this allotted time, you will be asked to do so.

Please do not visit if you are displaying symptoms of Covid-19 (ie new persistent cough, high temperature, loss/change of taste/smell).

Please do not visit if you are required to self isolate (ie if you have returned from abroad, or have been contacted by track and trace).

We would ask you to do lateral flow test before your visit or twice a week if you are visiting regularly. Tests can be requested from the gov.uk website
If you have a positive test result you should follow the guidance and request a PCR test. Please do not visit if you have had a positive PCR or lateral flow test.

If you wish to speak with a Doctor, please let us know in advance of your visit and we will try to arrange this for you.

During your visit

  • Please plan your visit, you may wish to bring a drink or snack. 
  • You will be asked to use hand sanitiser on arrival and supplied with a face mask, apron and gloves to wear. Please wear this throughout your visit and dispose of the gloves and apron in the room. Please wash your hands on leaving the room. You will be advised where to dispose of your mask depending on how you exit the building. Use hand sanitiser after disposing of your mask. If you wish to speak with a doctor, please let us know in advance of your visit and we will try to arrange this for you.

After your visit

  • Go straight home. Do not stop off anywhere on the way.
  • On arriving home
    o Wash your hands
    o Change your clothes and wash at 60oC with laundry detergent.

Guidance will be reviewed periodically according to government guidelines.

If you are unable to visit please ask ward staff about other ways to stay in contact e.g. email (keepintouch@sthelena.org.uk) or video calls (ipads are available on the ward for patient’s use and staff will be happy to assist).

The safety of all our patients, staff and you is our priority. Therefore, we reserve the right to ask you to leave the premises if you do not adhere to the current guidance. We thank you for your understanding and co-operation at this challenging time.

Guidelines for visiting a patient who has tested positive for Covid-19

Visiting someone with Covid-19 could result in you becoming infected with Covid-19 yourself.

You may have been told to self-isolate if you have had previous contact with the person who is Covid-19 positive. If you are self-isolating for this or any other reason you must not visit. For a full description of what is meant by a contact please click here 

If you are in a shielding group you must not visit anyone with Covid-19. If you are in a high risk group or over 60 years old we would strongly advise you not to visit anyone with Covid-19.

Please do not visit if you are displaying symptoms of Covid-19 (ie new persistent cough, high temperature, loss/change of taste/smell)

We would ask you to do lateral flow test before your visit or twice a week if you are visiting regularly. Tests can be requested from the gov.uk website
If you have a positive test result you should follow the guidance and request a PCR test. Please do not visit if you have had a positive PCR or lateral flow test.

The rules outlined below are designed to protect you:

  • Visiting will only be permitted if your loved one is thought to be in the last days of life.
  • Visits are limited to one person per patient (*exceptions may be made in exceptional circumstances please speak to the nurse in charge*)

Planning your visit

  • The risk increases the longer you spend with someone who is Covid-19 positive. We recommend limiting visiting to no longer than 30 minutes.
  • You should not eat or drink whilst visiting as this poses a risk of transmission. Please eat, drink and use the toilet before visiting.
  • You must go straight home after your visit so please take this into account.

During your visit

  • You will be asked to use hand sanitiser on arrival and will be supplied with a face mask, apron and gloves to wear. Please wear them throughout your visit and dispose of the gloves and apron in the room. Please wash your hands on leaving the room. You will be advised where to dispose of your mask depending on how you exit the building. Use hand sanitiser after disposing of your mask. This is for your own protection.
  • A face to face visit with a Covid-19 positive person, without correctly wearing a mask, apron and gloves for the duration of the visit, would require you to self-isolate for 14 days.

After your visit

  • Go straight home. Do not stop off anywhere on the way.
  • On arriving home
    o Wash your hands
    o Change your clothes and wash at 60oC with laundry detergent.

Guidance will be reviewed periodically according to government guidelines. 

If you are unable to visit please ask ward staff about other ways to stay in contact e.g. email (keepintouch@sthelena.org.uk) or video calls (ipads are available on the ward for patient’s use and staff will be happy to assist).

The safety of all our patients, staff and you is our priority. Therefore, we reserve the right to ask you to leave the premises if you do not adhere to the current guidance. We thank you for your understanding and co-operation at this challenging time.

    Guidelines for visiting a patient who is in the last days of life

    Arrangements regarding visiting have been relaxed because we believe your loved one is in the last few days of their life.

    • Visits are welcome at any time.
    • The duration of your visit is not limited however we would ask that you minimise the number of times you come and go throughout the day.
    • Visits are limited to a maximum of 4 people per patient
    • We ask that no more than one person stays overnight.

    Please do not visit if you are displaying symptoms of Covid-19 (ie new persistent cough, high temperature, loss/change of taste/smell).

    Please do not visit if you are required to self isolate (ie if you have returned from abroad, or have been contacted by track and trace).

    We would ask you to do lateral flow test before your visit or twice a week if you are visiting regularly. Tests can be requested from the gov.uk website
    If you have a positive test result you should follow the guidance and request a PCR test. Please do not visit if you have had a positive PCR or lateral flow test.

    If you wish to speak with a Doctor, please let us know in advance of your visit and we will try to arrange this for you.

    During your visit

    • You will be asked to use hand sanitiser on arrival and supplied with a face mask, apron and gloves to wear. Please wear this throughout your visit and dispose of the gloves and apron in the room. Please wash your hands on leaving the room. You will be advised where to dispose of your mask depending on how you exit the building. Use hand sanitiser after disposing of your mask.
    • Masks should be changed after being worn for 4 hours or if they become damp. When changing your mask you should also wash your hands and change your gloves and apron.
    • You might want to bring drinks or snacks with you. If you require anything from our kitchen please ask a member of staff. We cannot handle money but would ask that you leave an equivalent donation in the donation box at reception.

    After your visit

    • Go straight home. Do not stop off anywhere on the way.
    • On arriving home:
      o Wash your hands
      o Change your clothes and wash at 60oC with laundry detergent.

    Guidance will be reviewed periodically according to government guidelines.

    If you are unable to visit please ask ward staff about other ways to stay in contact e.g. email (keepintouch@sthelena.org.uk) or video calls (ipads are available on the ward for patient’s use).

    The safety of all our patients, staff and you is our priority. Therefore, we reserve the right to ask you to leave the premises if you do not adhere to the current guidance. We thank you for your understanding and co-operation at this challenging time.

    Vaccinations at the St Helena Tendring Centre

    The St Helena Tendring Centre in Jackson Road, Clacton, is being used as a vaccination centre, operated by the North East Essex CCG. 

    For the next few months, we are renting out our venue to the CCG in order for them to provide vaccinations to the local community in Tendring. 

    Please be aware, as the vaccinations are not run by St Helena, we cannot help with taking bookings for vaccinations or answer any questions or queries about how the vaccinations are being run/if the centre is open.

    To find out more about how to book your vaccinations, please visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/... 

    Information for relatives/friends of patients at The Hospice

    If you have a relative or friend staying at The Hospice and you would like to check on their condition or make sure they're ok, please in the first instance call the next of kin to ask for an update, as we will be in regular contact with them.

    If you do phone The Hospice to ask after your loved one, please bear with us in waiting for a response. Our nursing staff are often with patients when loved one's phone, and to speak with you they have to disrobe their PPE, dispose of it, and then when they return put on all new PPE to resume the duty they were in the middle of. With a shortage of PPE, we're desperately trying to do everything we can to avoid wasting it's use. We will therefore ask that you either speak with the next of kin for an update; or leave your details and one of our team will come back to you as soon as they have an appropriate moment to do so.

    Please be assured that if anything changes in your loved one's condition or if we need to update you on anything, we will be in contact with the next of kin.

    We thank you for your understanding at this time.

    Integrated end of life service with Anglian Community Enterprise

    During the coronavirus pandemic, St Helena and Anglian Community Enterprise are offering an integrated end of life service with 24 hour telephone support and triage and rapid response nursing as well as an increased number of hospice and community hospital beds. To refer to any part of this service please use the referral form here.

    Please note we can only receive referrals from NHS email addresses - if you need to make a professional referral and do not have an NHS email address please call us on 01206 890360 to ensure your referral is received.

    Support St Helena

    We’re facing a devastating loss of income because of the impact of the coronavirus.

    If you would like to support us to secure the future of St Helena, here are some of the ways you can:

    - Make a donation

    - Fundraise Your Way

    - Play our Lottery

    - Volunteer

    - Give a regular gift

    - Visit our shops 

    St Helena’s shops

    Updated 15th July 2021

    From Monday 19th July, in line with the Retail Association guidance, there will be some changes to our shops: 

    • Customers will no longer be required to wear face coverings, however they are welcome and encouraged in our shops. 
    • Our cafes at our Books, Brew and Boutique, Stanway, and Mersea will reopen fully - please note, track and trace will remain in the cafe 
    • Socially distancing will no longer be required in store; our one way systems have been removed; and there are no longer limits to the number of customers allowed in each shop
    • Changing rooms will reopen 
    • Hand sanitiser stations will remain at each shop and we perspex screens at our tills will also remain 
    • Our shop opening hours will be extended, please see below

    Shops will be open Monday to Saturday 9am to 5pm with the exception of Mersea Clothes, Furniture & Coffee which will be open from 8am to 4.30pm and Brightlingsea which will be open from 8.30am - 4.30pm. The following shops will also be open 10am to 4pm on Sundays: Magdalen Street Clearance, Culver Street, Peartree Road Furniture, Stanway Books, Brew & Boutique, Clacton, Great Clacton, Frinto Music, Frinton Clothes, Mersea Clothes, Furniture & Coffee, Dovercourt and Dedham. 

    Also, our Stanway Donation Centre will be open from 9am to 5pm Monday to Saturday. Our Mersea Donation centre will be open from 8am to 4.30pm Monday to Saturday and 10am to 4pm on Sundays. 

    You can check individual shop pages here for opening times.

    We want to assure our shoppers that we have taken every step to ensure their safety, as well the safety of our staff and volunteers.

    Contact Information
    Fundraising

    To contact the St Helena Fundraising team, please telephone 01206 931 468 or email fundraising@sthelena.org.uk , Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm.

    Retail

    To contact the St Helena Retail team, for enquiries about our shops, donation centre and house clearance service please telephone 01206 890 165.

    SinglePoint

    24 hour advice: SinglePoint 01206 890 360

    SinglePoint is a 24/7 advice and support helpline which helps to coordinate an individual’s care with the hospice. SinglePoint also works alongside other healthcare services such as GPs, Community Nurses or Specialists.

    The Hospice

    To contact a patient at The Hospice please find the address and telephone number below. Phone calls can be made to patients at any time of the day or week. You can contact Inpatient Services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    The Hospice, Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, C04 9JU

    Telephone: 01206 845 566

    Hospice in the Home

    You can contact The Hospice in the Home Team Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on:

    Colchester/Halstead team
    Telephone: 01206 845 566

    Tendring community team
    Telephone: 01255 221 222

    Day Therapies

    You can contact the Joan Tomkins Centre (Colchester) Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on:

    Telephone: 01206 848 163

    Fax: 01206 752 245

    You can contact the St Helena Tendring Centre (Clacton) Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01255 221 222

    Tendring Centre Postcode for Sat Navs: CO15 1EU

    Human Resources

    The HR Team can be contacted Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01206 931 466

    Finance Team

    To contact the St Helena Finance Team please telephone 01206 931 450 Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm

    Volunteer Services Team

    The Volunteer Services team can be contacted Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01206 931 466

    Media Enquiries

    For all media enquiries between 9.00am and 5.00pm, Monday to Friday, please phone the Marketing and Communications team directly on 01206 931 464

    Patient Referrals

    If you, or a member of your family has a life-limiting illness and would like to discuss whether St Helena care services can help, you can contact the SinglePoint telephone service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 01206 890 360

    Bereavement Support

    To contact the St Helena Bereavement Support team please telephone the bereavement helpline: 01206 984 274, Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm

    Learning and Development Centre

    The Learning and Development Centre is open Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm and can be contacted on 01206 851 560

    Service User Group

    For more information on the St Helena Service User Group please contact Chair, Ken Aldred on 01206 751 397

    Facilities Hire Enquiries

    01206 851560

    Lottery

    To contact the Lottery team please call 0800 285 1390 or visit the website here, Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

    If you would like to write to or visit the Lottery team, the address is: Your Hospice Lottery Office Unit 6 The Atrium, Phoenix Square, Wyncolls Road, Colchester CO4 9AS.

    Comment, compliment or complaint

    Feedback, comments and complaints about St Helena care and support services may be made verbally or in writing to: Director of Care, St Helena, Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, CO4 9JU. To speak to a member of our team, call 01206 845 566