How corona affects social services

20.03.2020 - 13:25
How corona affects social services
Follow the highlights of this morning’s news conference outlining the social services are coping with the corona crisis

The 11am news conference featured Edvard Heen, CEO of the Department of Social Services (Almannaverkið), Eyðun Christiansen, the head of the Municipalities Association (Kommunufelagið) and Tóra við Keldu, representing the country’s disabled people.

Edvard Heen on social services in general 

Everything is going according to plan in the social services, as none of the 1,700 service users have been infected and none quarantined.

843 care staff are available for service, a single staff member has tested positive, 31 are in quarantine and another 44 are unavailable for various non-corona related reasons. This has in no way affected the service users.

Social Services phone services function as normal.

Eyðun Christiansen on the elderly

Elderly service users should feel safe in the knowledge that all preventative measures are working according to plan.

The elderly are the most susceptible to Covid-19, and all efforts are being made to protect them.

Should an elderly service user become infected, there is an option to isolate them in the centre or home in which they reside.

It is essential that relatives also take responsibility in this situation.

There are ongoing talks with trade unions and students to ensure that there is sufficient staff in case of a shrinkage of the current staff due to quarantine measures.

Eyðun Christiansen on municipal childcare services

Drastic measures were put into effect soon after the second positive test was registered, with schools and daycare centres closing down.

A special childcare system was set up for parents in jobs deemed essential for the normal running of society.

Less than 50 children have made use of this service, which is less than one percent of the total capacity of the municipal childcare services.

How disabled people are affected

Tóra við Keldu is the chairwoman of Megd, the national association for the support of disabled people, which covers 24 local member associations with 4,000 members in total.

She said that disabled people are facing many different challenges during the corona pandemic. Many are extra vulnerable to infection while others have a fundamental need to live under safe and reliable conditions.

Stress is a natural response in times of crisis, and Megd is working hard with its partners to ensure that its members and their relatives are given all the care and support they require.


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