The current 24-hour news cycle can cause us to suffer information OVERLOAD – and when we feel overloaded and overwhelmed, it can be a challenge to sift through what is actually important. Our homeowner clients and sitters may rest assured knowing we are committed to your safety, protection and well-being. Mostly, we’re talking about ways in which we may continue serving our community, including finding new ways we can be supportive of each other during this time of self-isolation and physical distancing. There are naturally many concerns about the situation, the fear and uncertainty everyone is experiencing. Our primary priority is to protect the safety of our homeowner clients and our sitters, while continuing to meet our service commitments. Fortunately, scientists have confirmed the coronavirus cannot be transmitted between humans and animals (including birds, bats or snakes/lizards). For us at House and Home Sitters, it’s still (at least for as long as we’re not prevented by any government regulation) “business as usual” when it comes to our sitters taking care of the homes and pets of our homeowner clients, and we remain steadfast in honouring our commitments. Perhaps fortunately, by its very nature, house and pet sitting is an isolationist occupation, and as long as the standard safety regime (with which we are all by now familiar) is followed at handovers, risks are extremely minimal.
Most transport services are still running to timetable and the latest advice from the government is that people can safely continue to use public transport, as rigorous antiseptic cleaning routines and other safety precautions are being followed. Anyone who has watched the news, however, will have seen how completely empty the London tubes are. Road transport is clearly safe as regards the virus. It is claimed the main way the virus is transmitted is via physical contact, but it’s also been claimed that mere breathing, let alone coughing and sneezing, may also do so. The virus enters through our nose, mouth and eyes. It seems the spread of the coronavirus is unstoppable and there’s no alternative to letting this run its course until it burns itself out. What isolation achieves is to slow the rate of transmission, and “flatten the curve” of new cases, the only effect being to reduce pressure on the NHS and general health system. There is no official treatment for this virus. That said, it seems a possible drug-combination treatment has been found in India, and scientists around the world are working together to find ways to stop the virus attacking our T-cells (our immune cells which fight against infection) and to stop it from replicating. Unfortunately, by the time any vaccine is developed, the virus will have burnt itself out.
From the latest Physicians Report published a couple of days ago:
The bottom line is, we are all at risk. The elderly and those with medical issues such as hypertension and diabetes appear to be at higher risk of a severe disease course and death. Children may be spared the consequences of severe disease, though they can be asymptomatic to minimally-symptomatic carriers of the virus – placing those who are vulnerable at higher risk.
The mortality rate reported in South Korea increases by age brackets from 0.4% in the age group 50-59 to 8.23% in those above 80 years old.
We are all doing our bit to flatten the curve and reduce the pressure on our health systems.
Measures we have taken include:
- Encouraging our house sitters to familiarise themselves with information on COVID-19 (Coronavirus-2019), and consult a doctor immediately if they feel unwell;
- Informing our house sitters about the symptoms, detection and methods of prevention;
- in particular, reminding our house sitters of good hygiene practices such as regular hand washing and strictly adhering to social distancing guidelines;
- Expanding their use of home office and teleworking where feasible;
- Implementing a self-isolation period for our house sitters who have returned from high risk areas; and,
- Advising against all non-essential travel.
To our more than 350 house and pet sitters:
Thank you for all you are doing, working hard, each doing our bit to continue taking good care of the homes and pets of our homeowner clients. As Britain’s premier professional house sitting service, we carry on doing our best in the name of service and love for what we do.
To our many homeowner clients:
Thank you for your patience and consideration while continuing to support us in these testing times. Our sitter colleagues – and fellow homeowner clients – are facing the same pressures as you, and we really appreciate your understanding and respect in these uncertain times.
All of us, like you, hope this pandemic will soon pass, and that life will get back to “normal” again.
Please get in touch if you have any other questions and we’ll do our best to help. These are uncertain times for many of us. Our homeowner clients can still, however, expect the high-quality service they are used to receiving from House and Home Sitters. We have you in our thoughts and wish you (both physically and mentally) good health at all times.
You can also stay up to date with the latest coronavirus developments via the NHS, Department of Health and Social Care websites.