COVID-19: Business as usual

Posted on: 19/06/2020


On 23 March 2020, the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson addressed the nation about a new strain of coronavirus, COVID-19, the biggest threat this country has faced in decades. After being declared a world-wide pandemic by WHO, the UK was placed under full lockdown rules. Only a small number of business providing essential goods and services were permitted to remain open.

Progress Lifeline’s products and services were considered ‘front line and essential’. Many of the service users have short and long-term disabilities, health conditions, and at risk of falls, so it was paramount to keep the business operating as normal.


Progress Housing Group (our parent company) established a Senior Management Incident Team that monitored the situation daily. Following advice from Public Health England and the NHS to minimise the spread of the coronavirus, the business continuity plan was activated.

During the unprecedented time, Progress Lifeline was able to perform its usual services. Some of the procedures, products and services were either adapted or implemented outlined below to meet the needs of service users and staff.

Concentration of Business as Usual aspects of Covid:

  • Welfare call and visit service implemented to support the most vulnerable service users.
  • A ‘contactless’ self-install telecare package implemented for customers shielding.
  • Self-install procedures, paperwork, install video and user guide produced.
  • Hospital discharge programme adapted to make it more efficient, using the Footprint
  • Redeployed staff were trained to help support the collections and welfare calls teams.
  • Proactively sourced PPE equipment to ensure staff and service users were kept safe.
  • North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) lift assist service continued.
  • Recruitment continued. Interviews and inductions conducted virtually via Zoom.
  • Custom ‘work from home kits’ issued by the IT team that provided remote access.
  • Alarm response centre operators continued to take alert calls 24/7 within the set time frames.
  • Disaster recovery site for emergency situations sourced, developed and made operational.
  • Installers continued to carry out equipment installs and repairs following strict protocols.
  • COVID-19 resource intranet hub implemented to provide staff with support information and the latest Government guidelines.

Craig Frost, Policy, Information and Commissioning Manager at Lancashire County Council, said: "Progress Lifeline has done a great job at adapting and enhancing its services during the COVID-19 emergency so the people they support get the best possible services during this difficult time. The introduction of wellbeing calls to those most at risk and the results that have been achieved to help keep people safe and well are brilliant."