Booking face-to-face assessments has become far more complex due to the risks associated with COVID. Whilst many clients are keen to book an appointment as quickly as possible and I'm keen to offer my assessment services, the health and safety of everyone is paramount. This not only concerns the person being assessed but other people living in the same household as that person. Similarly, I need to protect the health of myself, my husband and my two young adult children who live with us.
I ask that anyone wishing to book carefully reads this first.
Prior to the assessment
- offer an opportunity for a brief Zoom session so that the person being assessed (and family where appropriate) can meet me
- ensure that the surfaces and doors in my hallway, cloakroom and dining room (where assessments take place) are wiped down thoroughly before every client
- give you as much notice as possible if any member of my household develops symptoms that could be associated with COVID-19 or is self-isolating so that the appointment can be postponed
- wash my hands and the test materials that clients touch before every assessment
I ask that you:
- inform me whether anyone in your household is ill and/or could potentially have symptoms of COVID-19 as the appointment will need to be postponed.
- inform me if anyone in your household is currently self-isolating and/or shielding as the appointment will need to be postponed. This includes being notified by NHS Track and Trace that you need to self-isolate, even if you do not have any symptoms.
- email questionnaires to me before the assessment date. If this is not possible and you need to send a hard copy, please post it to me at least 7 days in advance so that the paperwork can be put in quarantine when it arrives through the post. This avoids handling paperwork on the day
On the day of the assessment
- open the front door and, after a brief conversation at a distance on the doorstep, let in the person who is being assessed
- for activities that can't be conducted 2 metres apart, sit behind a clear Perspex table-top screen that has a small cut out at the bottom
- wear a mask if requested. Whilst I wouldn't choose to do this since being able to see the face is so important to establish rapport, I'm happy to do so if you makes you or your child feel more comfortable. I have non-medical masks with child-friendly designs
- do my very best to make the assessment as chilled and positive as possible whilst appreciating the challenging circumstances
- supply paper towels for washed hands to be dried
- keep internal doors and windows open to improve circulation and prevent having to touch door handles.
I ask that you:
- (if a parent/carer) sit in either your car or my garden during the assessment to minimise risk . The garden table is just outside my dining room where the assessment takes place. Alternatively, you may wish to return two hours later to collect your child/young person.
- use the side gate to access my back garden rather than come in the house. The gate will be left open regardless of the weather so that you can go between your car and my garden, but also so that you can check your child is safe from a safeguarding perspective (I do hold an enhanced DBS certificate).
- ensure that the person being assessed comes with two pens or sharpened pencils (for children, this will be whatever is usually used to write with at school), a drink/snack if desired and something warm to wear as the dining room window will be left slightly open for ventilation
- tell the person being assessed in advance that hands will need to be washed on arrival either in my cloakroom or using children’s own hand sanitiser at the assessment table. This may need to be repeated during the assessment when assessment materials are touched
- bring along face masks if desired
- maintain a safe distance
After the assessment
- as desired by the client, give feedback a) under my porch, b) on my patio if weather permits, c) later on in the day via Zoom or over the phone or d) in a brief email
- send the report to you as quickly as possible. My usual turnaround for reports is 21 days. However, depending on the level of demand for assessments during this time, it may be up to 30 days
- tell you if I (or anyone in my household) contract symptoms of COVID within 14 days of the assessment
I ask that you:
- are understanding how the report could take up to 30 days
- tell me if you contract symptoms of COVID within 14 days of the assessment
- give you as much notice as possible if assessments need to be cancelled/postponed. This may be due to signs of illness within my household, tightening of safety measures by the government, direction by my professional bodies, etc. I will make contact to rebook once it is safe to assess again
I ask that you:
- give me as much notice as possible if you wish or need to cancel/postpone
- do not share my questionnaires with other assessors if you cancel the appointment This is because they form part of my intellectual property and have been developed over many years. Other assessors will have their own paperwork.
Beneath are photos of my home including the side passage and garden. We also have a large retractable awning (7m x 3m) which can be used during light rain although it won't withstand heavy rain and high winds.