National Head Office
+353 1 823 0776
9am – 5pm
Monday -Friday
Information and advice number for those in experiencing or at risk of homelessness
087 912 3989
9am – 5pm
Monday -Friday
Fundraising queries
+353 1 823 0776
9am – 5pm
Monday -Friday

Most Popular

National Head Office
+353 1 823 0776
9am – 5pm
Monday -Friday
Information and advice number for those in experiencing or at risk of homelessness
087 912 3989
9am – 5pm
Monday -Friday
Fundraising queries
+353 1 823 0776
9am – 5pm
Monday -Friday

Pages (1)

News (2)

COVID19 Staff Updates

Updated at 9.15am on March 30th, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

Further to my email last Monday, you will be aware of increased restrictions that have now come into force in relation to the Government’s continued COVID-19 response.  You may have been advised by your manager yesterday that PMVT is an essential service provider and that all those on the front line and also all PMVT staff engaged in administrative and support of our essential services are deemed essential employees. It is therefore essential that you carry your PMVT ID badge while travelling to or from work or when out and about on PMVT business.

I have attached a letter (available to download here) that should be printed out and kept with you at all times to ensure that you can get to and from work and go about your work business unimpeded over the coming weeks.

These are challenging times now for all of us, but if we pull together and each of us play our part we will get through this together. We value the work of all our staff and in particular those on the front line at this time. Every care needs to be taken to ensure that our client group are kept safe and well throughout this pandemic.

Follow the PMVT COVID-19 Task Force updates and if you have any particular queries or concerns contact your line manager or head of services for direction.

In the meantime, ensure to stay safe and I will be in touch soon again with further updates soon.

Kind regards,

Pat

CEO Message 23rd March 2020

Dear Colleagues,

Further to my email this day last week, I wish to draw your attention to a number of critical actions that we are taking in relation to COVID-19.  Firstly, I would like to complement you and your teams for doing all you can do to adhere to regular and frequent hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette and for continuing to support our vulnerable client group at this time.

Our number one aim is to support our clients and to maintain our critical frontline services throughout this pandemic.  This is an unprecedented time for us all and much will be asked from all of us in the days and weeks ahead.  We have taken considerable steps and will continue to do so to ensure we have the capacity to see this through.

We have closed our residential community detox and treatment service in The Naul and have transferred the staff resource to the frontline.  We have also closed our day stabilisation service and homeless café in Berkeley Street.  This was partly to ensure that we reduce the spread of the virus through social contact but also to redirect resources to frontline residential services which we are endeavouring to keep open.  Arrangements are in place to link with participants affected by the closures.  Rough sleepers who attend Berkeley Street have been redirected to Phibsboro Road.

We are reviewing resource allocation across all departments to identify what resources from each department can be redeployed to support our critical frontline work and we will communicate this to the relevant departments in the coming days.  Redeployment of staff and reconfiguration of services will be the new norm for the foreseeable future.

In partnership with the DRHE and the HSE we have taken over the management of 5 apartment blocks comprising of 110 apartments which will be used for cocooning for vulnerable PMVT participants with particularly complex health-related issues and self- isolation of suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19.

In principle, the main message I would like to get across to you today is that we will do everything we can to support you and ensure that the appropriate resources are there to keep critical frontline services going.  On your part, we need increased flexibility in order to respond to this evolving and unprecedented pandemic.  In addition to the obvious concerns we all have in relation to the health of our participants, our own health and that of our families, we are conscious too that lots of people across many sectors have lost their jobs, whole parts of the economy have closed down and this is already having a major effect on our ability to fundraise.  Consequently, like many other organisations, we will have to make savings and reduce costs within the organisation.

Our goal is to resource critical frontline services and so our cost review is based on reducing back office costs and non-critical frontline services and then to transfer any savings to the frontline so that our frontline staff can continue to do what they do.  Your understanding and cooperation going forward has never been more valued and needed than at this critical time.  I will keep you updated on critical developments.

It is perfectly normal in these unprecedented times to feel vulnerable and unsure.  Naming this is important, but equally minding our vulnerable client group is the objective of us all at this time.  Your courage, commitment and professionalism has never been needed more than it is right now.  Stay calm.  Stay Safe.  And mind each other.

Kind regards,

Pat

CEO Message 16th March 2020

Dear Colleagues,

Further to our email below from the PMVT COVID-19 Task Force, I wanted to draw your attention to the critical stage we are now at in the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation in Ireland.  The Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Tony Holohan has indicated that the next 7 days are critical to ensure that we “flatten the curve” and thus slowing the spread of infection.  Your support and cooperation is vital here, especially heading into St. Patrick’s Day.

On our part, we continue to prepare, plan and actively adapt to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation.  We are linking with all relevant colleagues in the DRHE, the local authorities, HSE Social Inclusion, HSE Addiction Services, Tusla and the Department of Justice in order to ensure that we are part of a cohesive and collaborative response with other stakeholders.

We have participated in numerous conference calls as part of our ongoing preparations including a conference call with the Minister for Housing and the CEOs of the main homeless service providers to ensure a collective approach.

As you are aware, training has been completed with both staff and participants across the organisation in relation to hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette and our staff our supporting residents to abide by the need for social distancing on an ongoing basis.  Staff have been instructed to conduct any team meetings by way of teleconferencing and to avoid all non-essential face-to-face meetings.  We have put in place a register of residents who are immuno-compromised or who have underlying health issues and are closely monitoring these.  We have also sought to identify any staff members that may meet these criteria and have arranged for them to work from home where possible.  If this applies to you, in confidence, please let this be known to your line manager or your head of services and we will do all we can to plan accordingly.

In order to ensure that our frontline services can continue to operate and that staff are supported, our finance, fundraising, HR and central supports departments have been directed to split into an A-team and a B-team and for the A-team and B-team to work in isolation from each other.  The rationale is that if one team is impacted the other can continue to function in the best interests of all of us in the organisation.  Both of the above strategies are being underpinned by IT resources across the organisation.

We continue to stock pile PPE and have identified a number of new supply chains to access these.  Likewise, we have confirmed with all of our main suppliers that they have put business continuity plans in place to guarantee supply.  This applies primarily to areas such as meal provision, repairs and maintenance, cleaning, laundry etc.

We have identified 60 additional beds that can be brought into play to address any shortfall in capacity in the sector and we have also identified 2 isolation units comprising of 30 beds.

The main goal over the next few weeks is to offer maximum support to our vulnerable client group and to support our staff.  We have already reduced opening hours in our day services and as the impact of COVID-19 intensifies we will be closing a number of designated services, particularly day services in order to reduce the spread of infection but also to free up staff to maintain our residential services.

Your support, your professionalism and your flexibility is needed more than ever as we head into this challenging period.  You may be asked to be redeployed in order to ensure continued service delivery to our target group who are disproportionately as risk at this time and your cooperation is deeply appreciated.

I know that there is a lot of anxiety among staff for our client group, for themselves and for their families.  Minding your mental health is so important at this time as is staying calm and staying focused.  The EAP – a free and confidential counselling service for all staff – can be contacted on 1800 222 833 and is there to support you should you need it, as is your line manager, but so are the facts and I wish to draw your attention to the statistics below which I hope will act as a counterbalance to the anxiety that exists within all of us.  It is vitally important that we follow all the steps to reduce and delay the spread of the virus, but should it continue to spread, the Department of Health has advised the public today that around 80% of COVID-19 cases will be a mild to moderate illness, 14% will have a severe disease and around 6% are critical.  The HSE advice, as updated yesterday, also states that the most at risk age groups for COVID-19 are “60 years of age and over”.

The table below shows the age profile of PMVT staff. It is important to be aware that 67% of all our staff are under 35 years of age and 83% of our staff are under 45 and 96% of our staff are under 55.  Although we cannot yet calculate the amount of us that may be contract the virus, we must all be vigilant and particularly mindful of the impact on staff with underlying health issues and staff who fall into the higher age bracket.  This is fully in line with our concerns for the wider population also.  When it comes to our client group, our concerns are even more pronounced as health related issues and immune-compromised status are far more prevalent and supersede age as a primary risk factor.

I cannot emphasise enough that we are doing everything we can to prepare and don’t take any risks, follow the advice of our line manager, the HSE, Department of Health and the Government in reducing your social contacts, avoiding large gatherings, keeping your distance, maintaining hygiene practices and looking out for vulnerable family, staff and clients.

As I am sure you will understand, the planning environment is changing by the hour both sectorally and organisationally.  The PMVT COVID-19 Task Force will keep you updated on any critical developments within PMVT.

It is perfectly normal in these unprecedented times to feel vulnerable and unsure.  Naming this is important, but equally minding our vulnerable client group is the objective of us all at this time.  Your courage, commitment and professionalism has never been needed more than it is right now.  Stay calm.  Stay Safe.  And mind each other.

Kind regards,

Pat

 

All Staff Message 16th March 2020

Dear Colleagues,

All staff are receiving regular updates via the email PMVT COVID-19 Updates (COVID-19Updates@pmvtrust.ie)

Please make sure to check emails from this address on a regular basis and to review the content circulated.

Yours sincerely,

PMVT COVID-19 Taskforce

CEO Message 12th March 2020

Dear Colleagues,

Please be advised that the following measures are being put in place across Peter McVerry Trust services as of today as part of our continued response to the COVID-19 virus.

  • All training is being suspended unless directly connected to the prevention of the spread of COVID-19;
  • All senior managers, managers and team leaders are to minimise gatherings such as team meetings etc. and to use appropriate IT resources, such as telephone calls, teleconferencing etc. to communicate as appropriate;
  • In relation to ordering office supplies and similar items from PMVT Head Office, managers are to ensure that no non-essential items are ordered.
  • Only essential Repairs and Maintenance issues related to health and safety are to be reported by managers and team leaders and steps should be taken locally to manage associate with non-essential repairs.

The above measures are being put in place in order to minimise movement between and across services and, importantly, to minimise costs across the organisation as the financial impact of the unfolding COVID-19 situation also presents as a risk that needs to be tightly managed.

I am sure you will appreciate that this is a rapidly evolving situation.  We are keeping it under constant review and liaising with our statutory and voluntary partners as appropriate on an ongoing basis.

I would ask that you continue to advise all staff be prudent, patient and calm in how we manage ourselves and our participant group during this period.

Kind regards,

Pat

—ends—-​​​​​​​

CEO Message 1st March 2020

Dear Colleagues,

In order to ensure that all PMVT staff are aware of and compliant with the necessary precautions regarding the spread of CoronaVirus, please see below an outline of all measures for PMVT staff to be aware of and to follow as required.  Please note all measures are in line with the recommendations set out by the HSE.

Due to the number of our participant group presenting with compromised immune systems, every effort must be made to reduce or eliminate the possibility of staff or participants contracting or spreading the virus.  Accordingly, there is a requirement for all staff to actively participate in ensuring that all standard precautions are taken and upheld to limit the potential spread of the virus.  Staff should ensure that the required precautions are followed calmly and professionally and that participants are supported to mirror this approach.

PMVT staff must make contact with their line manager prior to presenting to work in order to be instructed on next steps if in the past 14 days, the staff member has:

If any PMVT staff member meets any of the conditions set out above and feels unwell, especially where presenting with respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough, high temperature, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing), they should continue to keep their line manager advised of developments and also do the following:

  • Isolate themselves (i.e. stay separate from other people) and phone their GP immediately – giving their GP their travel history and symptoms.
  • Your GP should be contacted by phone rather than arriving at the GP’s surgery without contacting them so that they don’t put staff or other patients at risk of infection. Your GP will advise you of the next steps over the phone.

Information to Date:

The current outbreak that started in China spreads much the same way as the flu, through person to person contact, especially through droplets in the air produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It is thought that the disease can be spread by touching an object that had been infected and then touching your nose mouth or eyes. It is believed people are most contagious when exhibiting symptoms. Symptoms can include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

The symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure.

All staff should follow the recommended everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.  If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Attempt to stay at home or in another respite or healthcare facility when sick.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.  Facemasks should just be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).

To ensure that all staff across PMVT services are aware and educated as to precautions in respect of the Coronavirus, managers and team leaders are required to ensure that the attached poster (COVID-19 Risk Assessment Primary Care v5.0) is visible in staff offices in every PMVT service and to confirm that each member of staff has received and read this email.

By way of sensitively raising awareness among the participant group in a calm and professional manner, the attached poster (Coronavirus Poster for PMVT Participants) should be put up in public areas in PMVT services and participants should be made aware verbally of the importance of advising staff if they have:

  • travelled to Ireland from any of the following areas: China, Hong Kong, Iran, Italy (Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Piedmont, Veneto), Japan, Singapore, South Korea or any other identified areas with presumed community transmission
  • been in contact with a person who has novel Coronavirus, or
  • attended a hospital/healthcare facility where patients with novel Coronavirus are being treated.

I also attach two posters on “Washing Your Hands” and “Coughing and Sneezing” to be put up in appropriate locations in PMVT services by way of information and advice for staff and participants in infection prevention.

Additional information will issue in the coming days.  In the meantime, should you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact your line manager.

Kind regards,Pat.

—ends—-​​​​​​​