COVID 19 Guidance for staff working in residential care facilities for older people

This guidance is for Healthcare workers and managers delivering care in residential settings for older people.

Residents of nursing homes have been identified as a particularly vulnerable group. They have a significantly higher risk of contracting COVID-19 than the general population of similar age.

Particular attention is needed when caring for Older People to support the prevention of Covid-19, identification of symptoms and clinical management of residents in these settings. 

This section has been set up as a central point of contact for residential care facilities to access up-to-date clinical guidance, information and links to inform care and supports in these settings.

Read the advice to NPHET on the derogation of healthcare workers, who are deemed close contacts, from restricted movements following COVID-19 vaccination

HPSC Clinical guidance for residential care facilities

Clinical guidance for residential care facilities is available on the Health Protection Surveillance Centre's website

All HPSC guidance should be read and interpreted in conjunction with the Government's Framework of Restrictions. 

Clinical guidance covers - Guidance on visits to nursing homes, Information leaflet for visiting nursing homes, Infection Prevention & Control and the Prevention and Management of COVID-19 Outbreaks in Residential Care Facilities is available.

COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Health Professionals

Read Information for people getting vaccinated

Health Information Quality Authority

Staff working in residential care facilities should be familiar with COVID-19: An assurance framework for registered providers and the digital eLearning programme for infection prevention and control developed by HIQA.

HSE Library Clinical Resources for Residential Services

RapidInfo4U is a simple service for health professionals – it provides access to knowledge relevant to clinical practice in the context of COVID-19.
It does this in two ways: 

1. Users can ask us a question – our team of researchers and experienced clinicians will conduct a rapid evidence search and summary, drawing on a wealth of experience in specific areas to provide a rapid response on queries related to health professional practice and COVID-19.

 2. Users can search our Repository which contains carefully selected resources such as government guidelines, professional body recommendations and research evidence to support health professional practice.

HSeLanD – Health Services eLearning and Development

Health Services eLearning and Development is the Health services online learning portal. 

Healthcare workers in nursing homes can access:

  • COVID-19 Resource Pack for Healthcare Assistants, 
  • Resource pack for Registered Nurses (RGN) and RGN returning to professional practice (Older Persons Services)
  • Hand Hygiene for Clinical Staff and Non-Clinical Staff
  • Breaking the Chain of Infection
  • Introduction to Infection Prevention and Control
  • Putting on and taking off PPE in community healthcare settings
  • Pronouncement of Death by Registered Nurses in the Context of the Global COVID-19 Pandemic 2020 and many more resources at

COVID-19 Nutrition Support in Residential Care Facilities for Older People

Read more about COVID-19 Nutrition Support in Residential Care Facilities. This includes a malnutrition support toolkit and a practical guide for caring for a person with dementia.

Consent process and supporting decision-making for COVID 19 vaccination

HSE COVID-19 Vaccine information leaflets and accessible resources

Guidance for Obtaining Consent for COVID 19 Vaccination in Long Term Residential Care (LTRC) Settings- Specific Considerations (PDF, size 57.8 KB, 2 pages)

Consent for vaccination for COVID-19 (PDF, size 97.4 KB, 5 pages)

Vaccination Consent flow chart for long-term care facilities (PDF. 122 KB, 1 page)

Guidance and practical resource pack in preparation for COVID-19 Vaccination Programme in Disability Services (PDF, 3.2 MB, 69 pages)

Enhanced Illness Benefit for COVID-19

When a worker is told to self-isolate or restrict movements by a doctor or the HSE due to being a probable source of infection or has been diagnosed with COVID-19 (Coronavirus) by a doctor, they can apply for an enhanced Illness Benefit payment of €350 per week. 

Multilingual resources are available at

COVID-19 and Bereavement

COVID-19 restrictions have changed the way we traditionally mark our grief. Advice on grief and loss is available from the Irish Hospice Foundation.

This resource includes resources for healthcare workers and a Toolkit for Compassionate End of Life Care.  


Webinar One 19 November 2020 - Supporting Care of Residents in Long-Term Residential Care during Covid 19 Plan 

Preventing Covid-19 infection and early defence to stop transmission.pdf (size 3.3 MB)

Webinar Two 26 November 2020 - Supporting Care of Residents in Long-Term Residential Care during Covid 19 Plan


Webinar Three 26 November 2020 - Supporting Care of Residents in Long-Term Residential Care during Covid 19 Plan

Enabling visiting in LTRC during Covid19 guidance update 03 December 2020 (PDF, size 2.5 MB, 56 pages)

Webinar Four 26 November 2020 - Supporting Care of Residents in Long-Term Residential Care during Covid 19 Plan

Managing nutritional challenges in nursing home residents during Covid 19 ( PDF, size 3.3 MB, 56 pages)

Webinar Five 02 December 2020 - Community Settings Webinar Clinical Infection Prevention Control Guidelines