Invitation to participate in a study about developing and implementing care home visiting policies during COVID-19

During the pandemic, care homes have had to balance the risk of Covid-19 transmission against resident’s ability to see their close relatives and friends and the impact this can have on their well-being. We know that this has been extremely challenging.

We, a group of researchers at the London School of Economics, and our colleagues from Care England have been given funding by the National Institute of Health Research (Policy Research Programme) to carry out research into how care homes made these challenging decisions in practice, how far Government’s COVID-19 guidance on visiting arrangements helped them and what other support they needed.

The findings from our study will help to inform Government policy and practice during the current pandemic as well as help to prepare for similar crises in the future.

To do this, we need to hear from you. We are seeking care home managers (or a nominated senior staff member) to tell us about your views, opinions and experiences in a short online qualitative survey. We understand that you are very busy, so we have kept the survey to around 20-30 minutes, and we can also do it over the phone or Zoom with you if you prefer. We will also ask you to share your visiting policy with us.

The survey is not like a usual survey, where you tick boxes and give short open text responses of a few words. In this survey, we ask you to explain your views and experiences by writing a short paragraph or two for each question. For this reason there are only 10 main questions (we have to ask a few background tick-box questions up-front). We know you may have more to tell us in response to some questions than others, but the more information you provide us with, the more useful the results from the study will be.

Your information will be entirely confidential; only the research team will see your answers. We will report findings thematically, no-one taking part will be identified and none of the information that you provide will be attributable to you.

We really want to hear your views and experiences and will communicate them to the Government and other stakeholders.

If you would like to participate, please email 

Following the survey, we would also like to carry out some in-depth interviews. These will last about an hour. We will ask you at end of the survey if you would potentially be interested in being interviewed. If you say yes, we may call you to see if you are still interested and to answer any questions you may have. There is no obligation to participate in the interviews. We recognise that you are very busy and have limited time. If you take part in the follow-up qualitative interviews, we will provide £50 for your activity fund.