RM V-meeting September 24th presentations and links
There are a number of links from this slide deck to videos, etc, including information on NHSMail, DSPT, Flu jabs and much more
The webinar recordings and slides are located here https://www.healthylondon.org/resource/accelerated-improvement-resources/enhanced-health-in-care-homes/seasonal-readiness/winter-readiness/further-resources/
Skills for Care update slides with links to webinars and further information
A review of the project carried out by Dr Al Beck and her team from SLAM
This is a reminder of the flu vaccination campaign launched for social care and health staff. Please see the attached toolkit.
The importance of this vaccine has been highlighted by new PHE research which suggests that people infected with both COVID-19 and flu were more likely to die than those with COVID-19 alone. The risk of death more than doubled for those testing positive for both.
Please let us know if your staff, residents or service users are unable to access vaccinations for any reason.
Winter Economy Plan
Yesterady (Sept. 24th) the Chancellor announced his Winter Economy Plan which included a replacement to the furlough scheme: the Job Support Scheme.
Job Support Scheme
The Job Support Scheme is aimed at employees who are working at least a third of their normal hours. Employers are expected to pay for the hours the employee works.
For the hours the employee can’t work, the government and the employer will each cover one-third of the lost pay. The government’s contribution is capped at £697.92 per month. So long as this cap isn’t reached, an employee working 33% of their hours should earn at least 77% of their usual pay. 55% paid for by their employer and 22% by the Government.
To give another example, for someone on £2000 a month working 50% hours, they would get £1000 normal pay from their employer for the hours worked plus £333 extra from their employer for the hours not worked and £333 from the government for the hours not worked. In total, at least £1,666.
All SMEs are eligible. This scheme will last 6 months from November.
The 15% VAT cut for tourism and hospitality has been extended to 31 March 2021. Businesses who deferred their VAT bills will be able to pay back their taxes in 11 smaller interest-free instalments. Self-assessment tax payers are able to defer tax payments to January 2022.
The Bounce Back Loans will be extended from 6 years to 10, cutting monthly repayments. The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme lenders will be able to extend the length of loans to 10 years. The deadline for the government’s loans schemes has been extended to the end of November. Businesses struggling can choose to make interest only payments for 6 months or suspend repayments altogether. Businesses will not see their credit rating fall.
If you need advice on this, it is well worth contacting Richard Barnes at Towergate
Senior Business Development Executive
Caring Professions Division
Towergate Insurance Brokers
M: 07768 314 298
A: Ground Floor, Interchange, 81-85 Station Road, Croydon, CR0 2AJ
Towergate Insurance is a trading name of Towergate Underwriting Group Limited. Registered in England No. 4043759. Registered Address: 2 Minster Court, Mincing Lane, London, EC3R 7PD. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
How to access the PPE Portal
Thanks to our OCA colleagues for this easy to use guide
Use of NHS QR posters
This morning (Sept. 24th) the Government has announced that certain venues, including venues run by local authorities will now be legally required to display NHS QR posters in their venues by the 24th September. This includes all venues from the following sectors:
- leisure and tourism;
- close contact services;
- places of worship; and
- local authority venues.
For further details on the announcement please see: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/venues-required-to-enforce-rule-of-6-nhs-qr-code-posters-and-contact-logs
To support you, we have prepared a bank of resources which you can share with your own venues or with businesses in your area: https://www.covid19.nhs.uk/information-and-resources.html
Further materials on our business to business campaign which also may be useful are available here: https://coronavirusresources.phe.gov.uk/Test-and-Trace/resources/customer-logging-toolkit/
COVID-secure rule changes | Your free inspection-ready checklist
COVID-compliance now a legal obligation – are you ready?
Despite spending weeks encouraging employers to introduce their people back into COVID-secure workplaces, the government announced a dramatic 180-degree turnaround. They’re now advising all those who can work from home to do so in an attempt to curb an increase in COVID cases.
However, there are still many businesses for whom homeworking is not an option, such as those in the care sector. For them, creating a COVID-secure workplace has never been more important. COVID-compliance has now become a legal obligation and not meeting these standards in your workplace will result in fines of up to £10,000 and being forced to close your doors.
Wondering if your business is up-to-scratch and could confidently pass an inspection?
The Health & Safety and HR experts of LCAS partner, Citation, have put together an extensive checklist of all the considerations you need to make to get your workplace inspection-ready and safe for your people.
3 months free service – your member benefit
From staff mental health and wellbeing, professional bereavement and tricky HR issues, to infection control, risk assessments and visiting arrangements, Citation can help you operate both safely and compliantly in the coming weeks and months.
They can also help with care-specific training and e-learning, fire and electrical safety, Care Policies & Procedures, Care Mock Inspections, and CQC Pro – an application to demonstrate you’re meeting CQC requirements.
They are exclusively offering London Care & Support Forum members 3 months free service on Citation, if you partner with them in September only.
This means you can immediately benefit from their support and start 2021 knowing you’ve got everything in place.
They can also give us a call any time on 0345 844 1111 and quote ‘September London Care & Support Forum offer’ before 30 September.
The PPE Portal Guidance has been updated to state that it is now the route for eligible providers to use to order PPE for COVID-19 requirements. It is no longer simply an emergency top-up route. We’re waiting to see if the restrictions on the amount that can be ordered will also be lifted. For those of you not eligible for this portal, you will need to access PPE through the Local Resilience Forums or Local Authorities.
I’m also aware that the PPE Portal Guidance doesn’t actually contain a link to the portal or information about how to register – it simply states you should have received an email. The link to the portal is: https://www.nhs-ppe.co.uk/customer/authentication. Contact 0800 876 6802 if you are having trouble accessing the portal.
Hydration at Home Toolkit
Launched today! Wessex Academic Health Science Network (AHSN have worked in partnership with Hampshire County Council and Health Education England e-Learning for Healthcare (e-LfH) to develop an e-learning programme which aims to increase your knowledge and confidence in assessing an older person’s hydration needs and minimise the risk of poor hydration in a person-centred way.
Aimed at any person working with older people in the community, including care home staff, home carers, family carers and volunteers, the e-learning builds on the information and skills you may have already learnt and implemented from the Care Certificate <https://gbr01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.e-lfh.org.uk%2Fprogrammes%2Fc are-certificate-2%2F&data=01%7C01%7Ccheryl.davies%40wessexahsn.net%7C08c127ba6c6744ceed7608d85e021325%7C83777d80488347de82e432532846a82d%7C0&sdata=eED%2ByjHIoUy5GegVtVRo5%2BMX7UX66140n97Yap8YjwE%3D&reserved=0> .
The Hydration in Older People e-learning is part of the Hydration at Home Toolkit, both of which have been endorsed by the British Dietetic Association.
What can I expect?
Designed to be as interactive as possible, the e-learning takes approximately 45 minutes to complete and features a short video and an assessment in the form of a case study.
Whilst the content has been specifically designed for community carers, the messages are relevant to all carers, including those working in acute care settings.
Please note that if you have already completed the hydration in older people e-learning via the Hampshire County Council hub, you do not need to repeat the training in t he e-LfH Hub.
The hydration e-learning programme is part of the Hydration at Home toolkit which includes resources for the general public, including a hydration leaflet and poster.
For more information and to access these resources, please visit: https://wessexahsn.org.uk/projects/354/hydration-at-home-toolkit <https://gbr01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwessexahsn.org.uk%2Fprojects%2F354%2Fhydration-at-home-toolkit&data=01%7C01%7Ccheryl.davies%40wessexahsn.net%7C08c127ba6c6744ceed7608d85e021325%7C83777d80488347de82e432532846a82d%7C0&sdata=u68h9CToxZcG%2BW2jF72qtOCyV51NeZXuWp%2FKiayrUlE%3D&reserved=0>
Accessing the e-Learning
For more information about the e-learning resource, including access details, please visit: https://www.e-lfh.org.uk/programmes/hydration-in-older-people/ <https://gbr01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww .e-lfh.org.uk%2Fprogrammes%2Fhydration-in-older-people%2F&data=01%7C01%7Ccheryl.davies%40wessexahsn.net%7C08c127ba6c6744ceed7608d85e021325%7C83777d80488347de82e432532846a82d%7C0&sdata=IlsUBLj05RW9lG0ojW%2BTDWVS89tm1%2FANthJejPvZ%2BgI%3D&reserved=0>
are here to support London Care Forum members during this difficult time. We have launched our dedicated COVID-19 information centre that is available for London Care Forum members to utilise. This online hub includes a link to a free Health and Safety and Employment Law hub provided by our commercial partners, Ellis Whittam, as well as there being many business planning articles and risk alerts available for you to download, to advise, guide and support you in this unprecedented situation. Visit www.towergate.com/covid-19-updates or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Towergate Insurance Brokers and Towergate Insurance are trading names of Towergate Underwriting Group Limited. Registered in England No. 4043759. Registered Address: 2 Minster Court, Mincing Lane, London, EC3R 7PD. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Free Care Focused Cybercrime Webinar
With the recent news of a cyber-attack on cloud-based service provider Blackbaud, which has affected hundreds of businesses across the UK, making sure that you understand the dangers and opportunities for cyber-crime has never been more important.
With this in mind, Towergate Insurance have teamed up with CFC Underwriting Ltd to deliver an exclusive care focused cybercrime webinar.
Please join Towergate and specialist insurance provider CFC Underwriting on this free webinar on the 30th September at 10am, where CFC’s Cyber Development Leader Lindsey Nelson will review:
- Why there has been a dramatic rise in cyber exposures in the care sector
- Cyber claims case studies highlighting real cases seen
- What your options are to mitigate this risk with key takeaways for your business
There will be time for some Q&A following the presentation along with interactive poll questions throughout.
Follow this link to register: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1324920716415264267
Towergate Insurance is a trading name of Towergate Underwriting Group Limited. Registered in England No. 4043759. Registered Address: 2 Minster Court, Mincing Lane, London, EC3R 7PD. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
NEW PLAN TO HELP PROTECT CARE HOMES FROM CORONAVIRUS OVER WINTER
- A new Adult Social Care Winter Plan to support care homes through winter including free PPE and £546 million Infection Control Fund
- Care providers must stop all but essential movement of staff between care homes to prevent the spread of infection
- New Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care will be appointed to provide leadership to the social care nursing workforce
A new Adult Social Care Winter Plan will aim to curb the spread of COVID-19 infections in care settings throughout the winter months, the Health Secretary confirmed today.
As part of the plan, people receiving adult social care and care workers will receive free PPE, a new dashboard will monitor care home infections and help local government and providers respond quicker, and a Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care will be appointed to represent social care nurses and provide clinical leadership to the workforce.
Local providers must restrict all but essential movement of staff between settings to reduce transmission, supported by an extra £546 million for the Infection Control Fund. This will help care providers pay staff full wages and enable staff to work in only one care home.
This brings the total funding for infection control measures in care homes to over £1.1 billion and underlines the Government’s commitment to ensure adult social care has the resources it needs to keep residents and staff safe.
The Government is prepared to strengthen monitoring and regulation by local authorities and the CQC, including asking them to take strong action where improvement is required or staff movement is not being restricted. This can include restricting a service’s operation, issuing warning notices or placing conditions on a provider’s registration. Further details of how the winter plan will be enforced will be set out shortly.
Health and Social Care Secretary, Matt Hancock said:
“We are entering a critical phase in our fight against coronavirus with winter on the horizon. Our priority over the next 6 months is to make sure we protect those most vulnerable receiving care and our incredibly hard-working workforce by limiting the spread of the virus and preventing a second spike.
“This Winter Plan gives providers the certainty they need when it comes to PPE and provides additional support to help care homes to limit the movement of staff, stop the spread of coronavirus and save lives. We will be monitoring the implementation of this carefully and will be swift in our actions to protect residents and colleagues across the country.”
The new Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care role will provide clinical and professional leadership, while upholding and raising standards among the care workforce. Recruitment will begin in October to ensure the department and sector can benefit from the professional expertise the new role will bring.
To improve understanding of where infections are taking place in care homes, a dashboard will be introduced as a single point of information for local, regional and national government to monitor outbreaks and measures being implemented to reduce it.
Minister for Care, Helen Whately said:
“Our brilliant care workers have been tirelessly looking after our loved ones throughout this pandemic, and Covid rates have come right down in social care through the summer. With cases beginning to rise now, we must take the strongest possible action to stop the virus and protect people.
“The creation of the Chief Nurse for Social Care is also an important step and will provide leadership to social care nurses and the wider care workforce who often work unseen. The skills and compassion of our care workers must be fully recognised and supported ”
The unveiling of the Winter Plan will be supported by the publishing of the Adult Social Care Covid-19 Support Taskforce report highlighting the effectiveness of the fund and the Care Home Support Package.
Chair of the Adult Social Care Covid-19 Support Taskforce, David Pearson said:
“A test of any country is the degree to which it supports and enables those who need care and support to stay safe and to lead the best lives they can. This report draws from expertise from across the social care sector and sets out the actions that should be taken to help keep people safe while maintaining their independence.
“I would like to pay thanks to the huge involvement from the social care sector in the taskforce and in the development of this report and indeed in aligning closely with the Winter Plan. Close coordination between local and national bodies within the sector is critically important to the success of the sector and will play an important part in keeping people safe and healthy in the winter months ahead.”
The report will also look at how we can learn from the first phase of the virus and sets out a number of recommendations to the government to prepare for winter the sector and the workforce for winter.
Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government, Luke Hall MP said:
“We’re doing everything we can to ensure councils are prepared to tackle coronavirus throughout the winter months.
“These new measures including providing free PPE to care homes and new ways to track care home infections will make a huge difference in limiting the spread of the virus supporting those on the frontline with this important work.”
Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive , Care England said:
“We welcome the Government’s focus on care homes and will work with them to implement the Winter Plan to ensure the best outcome for residents of care homes and their families.”
MORE THAN HALF A BILLION POUNDS GIVEN TO SOCIAL CARE TO REDUCE
CORONAVIRUS TRANSMISSION OVER WINTER
Care providers will be given an extra £546m to bolster infection control
- The Infection Control Fund has been extended to ensure providers have the resources they need to halt transmission of COVID-19 throughout winter
- The fund can be used to pay staff wages for those self-isolating and hire more staff to restrict movement between homes
Care providers in England will benefit from over half a billion pounds extra funding to reduce COVID-19 transmission and help protect residents and staff throughout winter.
The Infection Control Fund, set up in May, has now been extended until March 2021, with an extra £546 million to help the care sector restrict the movement of staff between care homes to stop the spread of the virus.
The fund will help care providers pay staff full wages when they are self-isolating, and enable staff to work in only one care home, reducing the risk of spreading the infection.
This brings the total funding for infection control measures in care homes to over £1.1bn and underlines the Government’s commitment to ensure adult social care has the resources it needs to keep residents and staff safe.
Health and Social Care Secretary, Matt Hancock said:
“From the very beginning we have done everything possible to make sure our social care system is protected and has the resources it needs to keep our brilliant workforce and those they care for safe.
“This new funding of over half a billion pounds will support not only care home residents, but also some of the most vulnerable in society living at home and in supported living.
“I know this will give peace of mind to so many, and we will set out further detail in our Adult Social Care Winter Plan this week.”
Data published by DHSC in July showed the funding has helped providers to take key steps to improve infection prevention and control in care settings, including restricting staff movement in care homes and paying staff to self-isolate.
Minister for Care, Helen Whately said:
“I know just how hard social care staff have been working over the last 6 months to provide compassionate care for our loved ones and keep them safe in the face of this global threat. I am committed to ensuring the social care system has everything they need for the winter months ahead.
“Today we have set out additional funding to bolster infection prevention and protect our loved ones receiving care.”
From the start of the pandemic we have been doing everything we can to ensure care home residents and staff are protected.
This includes testing all residents at least every month and staff weekly since July, providing 208 million items of PPE, and making a further £3.7bn available to councils to address pressures caused by the pandemic – including in adult social care.
The government has also ring-fenced a total of £1.1bn of funding specifically for social care providers to support infection, prevention and control, on top of billions of pounds more in Local Authority funding which also covers social care.
Health and Social Care Workers Flu Immunisation Campaign
The flu vaccination campaign for health and social care workers has now launched. I have attached a campaign toolkit and image for your use. More resources can be downloaded here: https://campaignresources.phe.gov.uk/resources/campaigns/92-health-and-social-care-workers-flu-immunisation-/resources.
The key messages are:
- All frontline social care workers should get the flu vaccine.
- Social care workers can get the vaccine free of charge from GPs and community pharmacies now. (Local availability may vary).
- Personal Assistants and other social care workers employed through Direct Payments are eligible for free vaccinations for the first time this year.
- Social care workers don’t need ID or a voucher to be vaccinated – they just need to attend a vaccination clinic or book an appointment and self-declare as a social care worker.
- DHSC has procured extra vaccine this year, so that 1.5m social care workers can get the vaccine.
- DHSC and NHSEI have changed the pharmacy contract so that community pharmacists can vaccinate staff and residents in care homes at the same time.
- Care providers should upload information on staff vaccination status to Skills for Care’s Adult Social Care Workforce dataset.
This guidance has been updated to reflect the launch of a new testing service which is currently restricted to care home workers in England and Wales who want to access an antibody test.
Social Care and the Rule of Six Guidance
DHSC has stated the following to our requests for clarification over how the rule of six impacts care, particularly day services and care homes:
“There is an exemption from the gathering limit for people working, this means that someone who is gathering with others where reasonably necessary for work purposes will not be subject to the 6 person limit. There is also an exemption from the gathering limit where the gathering is reasonably necessary to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person, which would therefore exclude gatherings for the purposes of care from the limit. Residents would likely also be considered as being part of the same household unless for example they were living in separate buildings with distinct shared facilities, and so could gather with each other in groups larger than 6. Gatherings involving people visiting a care home would need to be limited to 6 including the resident(s). We have also included an exemption for support groups. This means that the majority of support groups are not subject to the 6 person social gathering limit if they are organised by a business, a charitable, benevolent or philanthropic institution or a public body to provide mutual aid, therapy or any other form of support to its members or those who attend its meetings. This includes, but is not limited to, providing support to those with, or caring for persons with, any long-term illness, disability or terminal condition or who are vulnerable;”
Update to Infection Prevention and Control Guidance
Update to Statutory Sick Pay Guidance
The SSP guidance has been updated to reflect the fact that from 26 August you can claim for employees who have been notified by the NHS to self-isolate before surgery.
Update to guidance for commissioners and providers of services for people who use
drugs or alcohol
This guidance has been updated to include a statement on ‘hands, face, space’ and the return to school. It also adds links to social distancing guidance and the rule of six.
Update to guidance on support bubbles
This guidance has been updated to say that support bubbles cannot be changed once formed.
CQC’s transitional approach
CQC has published a statement from their chief inspectors about what their transitional approach will look like from 6 October.
CQC COVID-19 insight report
CQC has published its fourth edition of their COVID-19 insight report. It focuses on infection, prevention and control as well as early findings from provider collaboration reviews.
What to do if a pupil is displaying symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19)
This is for Surrey, the principal will be similar. What is omits to mention is what to do when ‘no test available’
Complaints: Sector missing opportunities to improve adult care services, Ombudsman
Exclusive! 3 months free service on Citation
Working closely in partnership with London Care & Support Forum, we understand it remains a difficult time for the care sector and that many challenges lie ahead. That’s why we are exclusively offering London Care & Support Forum members 3 months free service on Citation, across September only.
This means you can immediately benefit from our support and start 2021 knowing you’ve got everything in place.
From former care home managers to ex-CQC inspectors, our care experts can help with your Health & Safety, HR and Employment Law, and CQC Compliance – areas which you know are as important as ever to keep on top of.
From staff mental health and wellbeing, professional bereavement and tricky HR issues, to infection control, risk assessments and visiting arrangements, we can help you operate both safely and compliantly in the coming weeks and months.
We can also help with care-specific training and e-learning, fire and electrical safety, Care Policies & Procedures, Care Mock Inspections, and CQC Pro – an application to demonstrate you’re meeting CQC requirements.
Interested? Arrange a free Citation catch up
To find out more and claim your exclusive 3 months free service, please click here.
You can also give us a call any time on 0345 844 1111 and quote ‘September London Care & Support Forum offer’ before 30 September.
CQC would like to hear your feedback on the updated Skills for Care guidance on
supporting personal relationships.
We published our report Promoting sexual safety through empowerment in February this year. This report had a number of recommendations which included Skills for Care updating their guidance on ‘Supporting personal relationships’.
Skills for Care have worked with Supported Loving to update this guidance. We’d like to get your feedback before its launched and to understand if there are any other resources that could help you to use this guide.
This guidance is relevant to all people who provide social care to any group of people. It will help organisations to equip their staff to support people to develop and maintain personal relationships, in a way that respects peoples’ choices, values and keeps them safe.
Share your feedback through our short survey.
You can share your views on all of our projects by logging in using the button below
Important: Coronavirus Cases Rising in Care Settings
I’ve attached a letter from Stuart Miller, Director of Adult Social Care Delivery at DHSC. PHE is reporting that the number of notifications of COVID-19 in care homes is increasing. The letter reiterates the importance of regular testing and the consistent use of PPE. It also states that they are aware of the issues with testing and results and are taking steps to resolve this.
In short, the letter is urging vigilance in the coming weeks and months.
Changes from Monday 14 September
From Monday 14 September, you must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than 6, indoors or outdoors. There are exemptions for COVID-19 Secure venues, such as places of worship, restaurants and hospitality venues. Education and work settings are unaffected. More information can be found here. The Secretary of State’s update to Parliament can be found here. See also the following pieces of guidance updated to reflect the changes:
- Meeting with others safely (social distance)
- Making a support bubble with another household
- Staying alert and safe
- FAQs about what you can and can’t do
- Working safely during coronavirus
- Advice on accessing green spaces safely
- Staying safe as a volunteer
- Guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection
We are seeking clarification about what this guidance means for the full range of care settings, as there isn’t anything explicit about social care. Our current reading is that the rule of 6 applies to social gatherings – not workplaces. So we’d assume that care settings, such as day services and day centres, should be treated as workplaces that need to be COVID secure and are therefore unaffected as long as the necessary rules on social distancing, hygiene and PPE are followed.
Track and Trace App
The Track and Trace App is launching on 24 September in England and Wales. The App has been redesigned to use Apple and Google’s decentralised model to protect privacy.
I have attached a series of documents which we received this afternoon that provide more information about the app and how social care providers can prepare.
- Introducing the NHS COVID-19 Pack
- A guide for creating a QR poster for venues
- App explainer poster
- QR guidance sheet for organisations in health and social care
These documents are geared towards setting up systems so visitors to care homes can tracked and traced. The QR guidance sheet states:
“For care homes we advise having a QR code poster at the entrance that visitors to the premises can scan on entry. You should continue to maintain any visitor registration system that you already have in place. We also recommend that care homes have QR code posters for waiting rooms and recreational areas that are regularly attended by external visitors and guests. If there are different restaurant and café areas within a large care home, they should each have their own QR code.”
Flu Vaccination Campaign – Health and Care Workers
PHE resources to promote vaccination amongst health care workers are now available.
CPA has only had 33 providers take part in the insurance survey. We really need a lot more to take part in order to gather sufficient evidence to support our case for indemnity for care providers. Talks with DHSC of resolving this issue are based on having sufficient evidence from providers Our previous surveys saw almost 400 providers taking part and we would like to see response from over 100 providers to give the results some credibility of being representative of the sector.
The survey will remain open until next Thursday 17th September and can be accessed using this link https://careprovideralliance.org.uk/cpa-survey-2020
Testing Guidance for Employers
Guidance has been published for employers and third-party healthcare providers introducing their own internal testing programmes independent from NHS Test and Trace.
Testing Privacy Information
The privacy statements around the testing system have been updated. A new document has been added about antibody testing.
Update to Guidance for People Receiving Direct Payments
The guidance has been updated to set out key expectations to support people’s continuing care and support needs, continued flexibility in the use of payments, and information to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19.
Updated guidance on direct payments & personal health budgets
Government has published updated Covid-19 guidance for local authorities and clinical commissioning groups in the delivery of direct payments and personal health budgets. A corresponding easy-read will be produced as soon as possible.
Please note this guidance does not have new advice – rather it sets out key expectations to support people’s continuing care and support needs, continued flexibility in the use of payments, and information to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19.
Coronavirus Life Assurance Scheme
The Government has a life assurance scheme for frontline health and social care staff who contract coronavirus during the course of their work. The scheme pays a £60,000 lump sum where staff die as a result of coronavirus and had been recently working in frontline roles and locations where personal care is provided to individuals who have contracted coronavirus. The scheme is administered by the NHS Business Services Authority (NHS BSA). Further information on how to make a claim can be found on the NHS BSA website.
Contact the NHS BSA helpline on 0300 330 3331.
As I’m sure you will have seen, the Prime Minister
has announced new measures to combat the recent rise in Covid-19 cases. From Monday 14 September, it will be illegal to meet in groups larger than six people indoor or outdoors in England. There will be exemptions, for example Covid-secure weddings and funerals. The Prime Minister also set out the obligations for businesses with regards to NHS Test and Trace, measures for local authorities to enforce the new rules, and steps to monitor compliance with border regulations.
Further details can be found in the press notice here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-covid-19-what-has-changed-9-september
Most providers face going into red this winter without extra Covid social care funding,
A third of providers already making loss despite council funding to cover PPE and drops in level of service but authorities running out of cash to do so, says head of directors’ body
The Care Association Alliance
a national body of care associations is conducting a survey with regard to the financial support received by social care
providers from local authorities during Covid-19. Please take the time to complete this:
Social care spending in England still £600m lower than in 2010
- NEW TUC REPORT sets out how to fix social care for good
- As the UK faces mass unemployment after the pandemic, social care could be a major source of new decent jobs, says TUC
Update on Testing
We are aware of an email from DHSC that has been sent to some care homes about issues with the testing system. I have summarised the email below for the benefit of those who haven’t received the email.
- Not all care homes are receiving results within the 72 hours promised by DHSC.
- If you still have not received tests results by the next planned regular testing, you should continue with the next round and not wait for the results of the previous round.
- There has been an increase in the number of unclear/void test results. If this is your experience, DHSC advises that you retest – for staff this means the next round of weekly testing but for residents this means an additional testing round.
There are also issues with the multiple registration portal. I have copied the text of DHSC’s email below:
“When completing registration for multiple people using the spreadsheet, a small number of care homes are presented with the following error message:
‘Sorry, there is a problem. Your test kits have not been registered.’
If you receive this error message, please re-register the tests one by one using the single registration option, when re-registering the test, if you see an error message which says, ‘Test kit already registered’ then this means this registration was successful the first time, despite the error message. You will receive an email to confirm the registration has been completed successfully.
If you are concerned about any tests you have previously registered using the system, please check for the confirmation email which gets sent to the email address given when registering. If you have received an email confirming that you have registered successfully, you do not need to worry. If you have not received this email please register the tests again individually using the link below and selecting the option to ‘Add each person’s details one by one’:
The issue with the multiple upload portal is only affecting a small number of homes, and our digital team are working hard to fully resolve this. We apologise to all homes who have been affected by this and will contact you again when the issue has been resolved.”
Lastly, a reminder that the regular re-testing portal is now open for all care homes.
CQC Update on Inspections
As you should have received directly from CQC last week, Kate Terroni, Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, wrote to social care providers to state that policies providers have put in place “are attempting to restrict how our inspectors do their job” and that attempts “to prevent or limit our ability to fulfil our statutory responsibilities are unacceptable”. NCF, of course, continues to maintain that all inspectors should be regularly tested as one way of diffusing this issue and we will continue to apply pressure to ensure that those you all care for are protected. CQC has failed to recognise the anxiety its policy has induced in the sector.
In case you missed it, DHSC is running an open consultation on the distribution of vaccines and treatments for COVID-19 and flu. In particular, they want to hear your views on proposed changes to the Human Medicine Regulations. The consultation closes on 18 September at 11:59pm.
NHSX is exploring how adoption of digital social care management tools could:
- benefit adult social care providers and the people they care for and support; an
- help social care systems integrate with NHS systems.
To support this, Digital Social Care are looking for adult social care providers to complete a short survey to understand how you feel about using technology in care settings. We are looking for responses from people who already use technology and also from those who don’t. The purpose of this research is to understand what support care providers might want around technology and to understand what types of technology are most useful for care and support services.
If you are a front line care worker and would like to give your opinion, please complete this survey: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/DSCBulletin2
If you are a senior decision maker in a care provider organisation (e.g. have responsibility for purchasing, IT or staff management etc.), please complete this survey: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/DSCBulletin1
The survey will close at 5pm on Wednesday 9th September.”
GOVERNMENT DELIVERS 250,000 CLEAR FACE MASKS TO SUPPORT PEOPLE WITH
- 250,000 clear face masks to be delivered to the frontline NHS and social care workers over the next few weeks
- Speciality masks to help support better care for people who use lip reading and facial expressions to communicate
NHS and care workers will be given clear face masks to help them communicate with people with certain conditions like hearing loss, autism and dementia, the government has announced.
The masks are see-through and have an anti-fogging barrier to ensure the face and mouth is always visible to help doctors, nurses and carers communicate better with their patients.
With around 12 million people in the UK thought to have hearing loss, the masks will be invaluable for people who need to lip read to communicate during the ongoing response to the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.
The masks will also help those who rely on facial expressions to support communication – for example, people with learning disabilities, autism or dementia, or foreign language speakers and their interpreters.
The new deal with US-based company ClearMask will see 250,000 masks delivered to NHS trusts and social care providers across the UK over the next few weeks.
Minister for Care Helen Whately said:
“Everyone using our remarkable health and care system deserves the best care possible and communication is a vital part of that.
“This pandemic has posed numerous challenges to the sector, so we are always on the hunt for simple solutions to support those giving and receiving care.
“The introduction of clear face masks will help overcome some of the difficulties carers wearing PPE are facing communicating with people who rely on lip reading. If this proves a success I look forward to increasing the supply to make sure whenever a clear mask is needed, there is one available.”
This applies across the whole of the UK and the government is working with the devolved administrations on allocations of the masks. The first delivery has already been distributed to NHS Trusts, with further deliveries over the next couple of weeks.
Social care providers will also have access to the masks through a new pilot system with Local Resilience Forums.
The Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England and Improvement will continue to work closely with suppliers on future orders based on demand.
The clear masks have met the government’s strict safety standards and will be rolled out to frontline workers over the next few weeks.
The Government has delivered over 3 billion pieces of PPE to the frontline and are working with around 130 new companies, including Royal Mint, Honeywell, Amazon and Royal Mail, to rapidly manufacture, source or distribute PPE at scale and pace.
This follows a national and international call to arms in April asking industry to channel their manufacturing power into making PPE for the health and care sector.
Roger Wicks, director of policy and campaigns at Action on Hearing Loss said:
“We welcome the procurement of clear face masks which has the potential to improve the accessibility of health and social care services for those who rely on seeing facial expressions and lip-reading to communicate – including people who are deaf or have hearing loss.
“Since the outbreak of coronavirus, people have told us continually that they are worried about communicating in health and social care settings where face masks are now in constant use. We know that clear masks have the ability to reduce barriers for both patients and staff across the NHS and social care services.
“People need to understand the information and instructions that they are given by health and care professionals: ineffective communication and misunderstandings have the potential to harm the health and well-being of people with hearing loss.
“We hope that different services across the NHS and social care are able to access clear masks and effectively match them to patient need. It will also be important that these masks are complemented by effective communication tips and deaf awareness amongst staff to ensure that people with hearing loss get the support they need.”
Professor Andrew Goddard, Royal College of Physicians President, said:
“The necessary use of face masks to protect staff and patients has made communication difficult. It’s particularly true for clinicians and patients who are deaf or have a hearing loss and rely on being able to read lips.
“Clear communication is always important, but particularly in healthcare. So we’re pleased these masks are going to be available very soon.
“Of course, lipreading doesn’t work for everyone, nor is it everyone’s first choice. It’s important that all NHS employers and services find out what someone’s communication needs are and meet them, in line with the Accessible Information Standard.”
Sarah White, Head of Policy and Campaigns at national disability charity Sense, said:
“The last few months have been particularly hard on disabled people and a part of this are the barriers that PPE brings to many of them in terms of their communication. While PPE is of course vital in keeping everyone safe during this pandemic, many disabled people rely on lip reading and facial expression to communicate which means masks present themselves as a big challenge.
“We’ve therefore been delighted to work with the Department for Health and Social Care, and other organisations to raise awareness of this issue and we welcome the introduction of clear masks for use in frontline health and social care services which will benefits millions of disabled people in this country. While clear masks won’t work for everyone and they can still present a challenge to some people, it certainly is a great first step which should be part of a clear and cohesive strategy for how we ensure that health and care services remain clinically safe at the same time as enabling disabled people to communicate and feel safe.”
Allysa Dittmar, President of ClearMask, said:
“As a company that was started in 2017 in a response to the need for improved, visual communication for the deaf and hard of hearing community, we immediately understood the critical need for such see-through, transparent masks during this pandemic for many different groups of people.
“We were proud to help answer the call for critical PPE for the NHS, and this partnership is a reflection of the hard work and dedication of many individuals involved in the push for better accessibility and care during this time.”
Notes to editor:
- For more info on ClearMask, visit https://www.theclearmask.com/
- For the latest statistics on PPE deliveries to health and social care services, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/ppe-deliveries-statistics-england-weekly-reports
- The PPE portal can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/ppe-portal-how-to-order-emergency-personal-protective-equipment
- For more communication tips for health and care workers, visit https://actiononhearingloss.org.uk/information-and-support/support-for-health-and-social-care-professionals/communication-tips-for-healthcare-professionals/
Most LRFs are now standing down.
Some LAs are supplying PPE. Wholesalers have stocks and more stock is on the way. Most PPE is now UK produced.
Clear Masks – Currently being distributed.
Public announcement Saturday.
USE THE PPE PORTAL, LOG ON & REGISTER
You may have noticed an increase in news stories about testing today. The BBC is reporting that prioritising COVID-19 testing in high-risk areas has led to shortages in other places, leading to people being asked to drive for more than 100 miles for a swab test. In response, on Radio 4’s Today programme Matt Hancock talked about plans for a mass testing regime based on saliva tests and the expansion of existing capacity. A trial of saliva testing has been launched in Salford – although it is worth pointing out that there are already trials that have been running for months in Southampton and Hampshire. £500m is being committed to launching the new trial and expanding the existing ones as well as scaling up capacity. There are no detailed timescales for these tests being rolled out wider.
Launch of Kickstart Scheme
The government has launched its Kickstart scheme designed to create 6-month work placements for 16-24 year olds who are claiming Universal Credit. The UK government fully funds each placement for 25 hours a week, including associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. The government will also pay employers up to £1500 to set up support and training for people on a Kickstart placement
- You can check if you can apply for a grant for the Kickstart scheme to create job placements here.
- If you need help with the Kickstart scheme process, the government has produced a list of regional contacts who can support you in applying.
- You can check if you can apply for a grant as a representative of a group of employers here.
- You can find employer resources here.
- You can use this link to apply for a grant.
Changes to Furlough Scheme
As of last Tuesday (1.9.20) the government reduced its contribution to staff wages to 70% up to a cap of £2,187.50 for the hours the employee is on furlough. Employers are expected to top-up employees’ wages to ensure they receive 80%.
Supporting People Outside their Home
The government has published guidance for people who need support when outside their home and for people who provide that support. This guidance may be relevant to some of your services.
Update to Admissions to Care Homes Guidance
A new section has been added to the admissions to care homes guidance with information on how care homes can support the NHS Test and Trace service in section 1. It asks care homes to keep a temporary record of current and previous residents, visitors and staff so that this information can be reported rapidly on request. The guidance goes on to state what information may be requested at short notice. Do also note the section on GDPR and Test and Trace.
Update to Provision of Home Care Guidance
The provision of home care guidance has been updated to include a new section on how home care providers can support the NHS Test and Trace service in section 3 as well as updated links to the hospital discharge service guidance. The ask of home care providers is the same as what has been added to the admissions to care home guidance: to keep a temporary record of care staff and recipients of care so that the information can reported rapidly on request. The guidance goes on to state what information may be requested at short notice. Do also note the section on GDPR and Test and Trace.
Infection control, hazardous substances, and HSE spot checks
Infection control in care: an essential, free checklist
With care providers being offered increased payments to support people who have had coronavirus, infection prevention and control will continue to remain incredibly important for all providers.
In this free guide, the Health & Safety experts of Citation, look at important areas such as the use of sharps, food hygiene, welfare training, personal protective clothing and equipment, workplace health, safety and welfare.
Your free guide to managing hazardous substances
The need for cleaning and sanitising has increased massively due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, with the use of new products, often involving staff that aren’t necessarily familiar with them as well as those coming back from shielding or furlough, it’s important now more than ever, to make sure those using the substances are trained in their safe use.
That’s where your Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) risk assessments come in. If you’re not sure where to start with COSHH risk assessments, or you need a refresher on best practise if you’re using new substances, Citation has created an exclusive checklist to help you get your assessments right.
Don’t be caught out by HSE spot checks
Though it’s still a difficult time for care providers, it’s worth being aware that the Health & Safety Executive is rapidly increasing the regularity of its spot checks, which means it’s important to ensure your COVID-secure risk assessment is in place.
If you’d like to double-check you’ve got everything covered, our experts have compiled a short checklist to help you check your workplace COVID-secure.
Expert, discounted support available to members
Now more than ever, it’s crucial to keep on top of your Health & Safety, HR and Employment Law. From infection control and visiting arrangements to managing staff and caring for their mental health, we’ve supported 1000s of care providers during these challenging times.
Clients also get access to CQC Pro – an online tool to help demonstrate you’re meeting regulatory requirements. Our cloud-based Atlas platform and CPD-certified and RoSPA approved care-specific e-learning can help you to manage and upskill your brilliant people, alongside our 24/7 expert advice line and provision of legal documentation, including risk assessments, contracts of employment and handbooks.
Plus, available to you is a complete set of specialised policies and procedures and fire and electrical services.
London Care & Support Forum members are also entitled to preferential rates on our services.
Social Works Training
NEW MANAGEMENT, AUTISM AND DEMENTIA DATES ADDED
Fully WDF Funded training* – all using our live tutor-led virtual classrooms and materials.
Dementia & Autism courses
Develop your professional knowledge with specialist training funded by Skills for Care* leading to a Level 2 RQF.
Give new staff a head start with fully Funded sessions starting every Thursday. Covers Care Certificate Knowledge and L2 Medication RQF.
PLEASE NOTE: All learners will need to have access to a Laptop/PC/Tablet and have internet access. Learners need to be registered with us at least 1 day before training begins.
Once learners have enrolled, we will confirm their start dates, tutors etc.
Contact us to find out more
PLEASE NOTE: Learners may need to complete a short diagnostic of their written English skills before joining a group. All learners will need to have access to a Laptop/PC/Tablet and have internet access. All workbooks will be able to be completed electronically (via Word or Editable PDF).
*To access Skills for Care Workforce Development Funding you will need to engage with the ASC Workforce Data Set (previously known as the NMDS-SC) and join a local employer partnership.
The Health Foundation
The adult social care workforce in London
Greater diversity and heavy reliance on zero-
hours contracts and domiciliary care differentiate the capital’s care workforce
20 August 2020
- Significant workforce issues around adult social care have gained greater prominence as the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has unfolded. Even before the pandemic, workforce issues were identified as the single biggest challenge for the sector. As decisions about social care are driven as much by local authorities as by national policy, regional differences need to be accounted for by policymakers. This analysis focuses on the social care workforce in London, which differs in many respects from other regions in England.
- London has a significantly higher proportion of its social care workforce employed on zero-hours contracts (41%) than the England average (24%) and this gap has widened since 2012/13. The relatively high proportion of domiciliary care jobs in London (53%, compared to an England average of 42%) is a possible driver of this trend.
- Migrant workers play a key role in delivering social care services in the capital, with nearly two-fifths (38%) of London’s adult social care workforce estimated to be non-British nationals in 2018/19 (more than double the England average of 17%). Care in the capital risks being disproportionately affected by current proposals for the post-Brexit immigration system.
- Low and stagnant pay rates, both before and after adjusting for price inflation, also remain a concern for the social care workforce in London. The National Living Wage has helped prop up pay, particularly for the lowest paid independent sector care workers. However, if we use the cost of living adjusted ‘real’ living wage as a measure, the average earnings of independent sector care workers are further below the benchmark in London than in other regions.
Their guidance portal for adult social care has been published. This page summarises where care providers can go to access key COVID-19 related guidance.
Chancellor launches Comprehensive Spending Review
The Chancellor has today launched the 2020 Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR). The Review, which will be published in the autumn, will set out the government’s spending plans for the parliament.
The review will set UK Government departments’ resource budgets for the years 2021/22 to 2023/24 and capital budgets for the years 2021/22 until 2024/25, and devolved administrations’ block grants for the same period.
As a social care provider, you need to make your views clear to your MP, in detail and with costings and examples.
How to contact your MP, find them here; https://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/contact-an-mp-or-lord/contact-your-mp/
The best route is to make your points in writing.
Oral health in care – preparing for CQC inspections
CQC inspections will recommence in September, with a particular focus on ‘safety, access and leadership.’ Before inspections, the CQC will be collating as much information from care providers as possible, reinforcing the importance of making your care service ‘virtually inspectable’.
In June 2019, the CQC released its Smiling Matters report. In it, they looked at the state of oral health care in care services across England. When inspections recommence, it’s likely that the CQC will check this, as an area you’ve addressed.
To refamilarise yourself with what the report found, read through Citation’s free guide to oral health in care.
Want the 24/7 backing of compliance experts?
Citation supports care businesses of all types and sizes with managing their Health & Safety and HR & Employment Law. Citation also have dedicated care products, including a CQC Application (CQC Pro), Care Policies & Procedures, Care Mock Inspections, and more.
Better still, as a member, you get preferential rates on Citation’s services.
To discover how Citation can help your care business, please click below.
Say So Ltd is proud to be hosting the first in a series of webinars
to provide inspiration, ideas, information and solutions for care owners, senior leaders, care managers and anyone involved in care service delivery.
5 professionals in their field will be presenting on the following important subject areas.
– Business Strategy and Leadership
– Transparency, Internal Communication and Reporting Processes
– Staff Support, Welfare, Practical considerations
– Efficiency reviews, use of technology
– Infection Prevention and Control
Date for your diary – THURSDAY 10th September at 2pm
REGISTER NOW ON THE LINK BELOW
A recent study by the Daily Express indicated that there has been a significant increase (66%) in complaints made by care staff to CQC during the Covid-19 pandemic, with the majority of concerns raised relating to infection control, social distancing and a lack of PPE.
Our latest update for care providers looks at some practical tips for dealing with whistleblowing disclosures.
From 1 August, the Government “paused” shielding for the clinically extremely vulnerable; however a woeful lack of Government guidance has created significant challenges in getting shielding care staff back to work.
T: 07508 297 597
The Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT)
is a free, online self-assessment for health and care providers to evaluate and improve their data and cyber security. The DSPT will help ensure your policies and systems are secure and meet data security and CQC requirements. It will also help you manage risks and share information with other health and care services with peace of mind.
All adult social care providers in England who have not already registered with the DSPT should do so by 30th September 2020, so that we can let you know when the new version of the DSPT has launched and how to access support.
You can follow our guidance on how to register.
Weekend Testing Update August 25th
Please find attached the slide pack from a DHSC webinar on whole home testing. The key points from the webinar to note:
- DHSC maintains that all homes with Randox kits should have had them replaced by now. If not, you can contact COVIDCareHomeTesting@dhsc.gov.uk to escalate.
- Any remaining Randox test kits need to be sent back ASAP via courier
- For those waiting for more testing kits (not replacement ones), there is a small backlog. This will clear as more care providers commit to weekend testing. DHSC believes they will be back on track by 31 August.
- Pilots of Supported Living and Extra Care testing are happening in 3 Local Authorities: Hertfordshire, LB Bromley and Sheffield. More LA’s are able to volunteer but must email Kavneet.Jolly@dhsc.gov.uk.
- To use any of the National Testing Programme’s services, users will be assigned a new 8-digit unique organisation number (UON). These will replace the care home ID that is currently in use for care homes.
- A new dedicated 119 helpline for social care testing will be established at the beginning of September. In particular it will help with the courier booking issues if couriers fail to arrive.
- Antibody testing is being run by local NHS rather than a nationally coordinated campaign. It is entirely voluntary and will run on a 12 week basis. Some areas will have it and others won’t. Local NHS or DPH should get in touch to let you know how social care workers can access it.
We have also clarified a few issues raised by the letter circulated earlier this week:
- Weekend testing is an ask but not a requirement. DHSC will not refuse to give test kits to homes that cannot do weekend testing
- DHSC is attempting to spread testing over all 7 days of the week rather than 4 to try and make the system more efficient
Lastly, see the following link for DHSC run webinars about weekend testing: https://event.on24.com/wcc/r/2601904/A473C7ECB515B6A15C305690478F5E29/1450322
Please see attached the letter to Directors of Public Health and Directors of ASC. It instructs them to encourage weekend testing in care homes. DHSC is currently trying to encourage more testing on weekends as the vast majority of care home testing currently happens during the week. This means the labs have under-used capacity on the weekends. They want to try and use this capacity to reduce the delays to the testing system. Please read the letter carefully as it seems to imply that care homes will be required to commit to weekend testing rather than given a choice. We will be seeking clarification on what exactly is meant. NCF was expecting an emphasis on weekend testing but we did not expect it to be a requirement.
Please do note the webinars explaining these changes on 25 and 26 August from 10am. These are aimed at Directors of Public Health and Directors of ASC but we imagine they will be useful for social care providers as well.
Changes to shielding guidance in England
Please see the attached letter from Stuart Miller about changes to shielding guidance. It essentially states that the NHS is maintaining details of those on the shielding list in the event of the need to reimpose local or national lockdowns. In this eventuality, the NHS will write to those staff impacted asking them to shield – although it isn’t clear how employers will be informed other than from the staff member. The document also sets out the steps employers should take to mitigate workplace risk and protect individuals identified as being at higher risk.
Hospital Discharge Guidance
Funding for discharge service policy – Update 25th August
Following on from the information below, about the new hospital discharge service, DHSC has announced £588m to provide up to 6 weeks of funded care and support for people being discharged from hospital. This can be used for domiciliary care, community nursing services or care home costs. Assessments for those needing funded long-term care or support will resume from September.
The hospital discharge service requirements, issued in March, have been replaced with a new section of the website which outlines the new hospital discharge service, the reintroduction of NHS continuing healthcare and action cards.
- The discharge policy introduces a change of process for the discharge to assess approach. From 1 September 2020, for those individuals being discharged from hospital, an assessment of the individual’s longer-term care needs, including Care Act and NHS CHC assessments, should be undertaken in a community setting during the individual’s period of funded recovery services (which can be up to a maximum of 6 weeks).
- CCGs will restart NHS continuing healthcare assessment process from 1.9.20
- Sections 3.13, 4.8, 5.3 of the discharge service policy states that people discharged from hospital to care homes should be tested for COVID-19 in a timely manner ahead of being discharged. But note, ‘Where a test result is still awaited, the person will be discharged if the care home states that it is able to safely isolate the patient…’
- There is a focus in the new guidance to discharge people as soon as is clinically appropriate.
- See section 7 of the discharge service policy for a list of actions for local authorities and adult social care services in implementing the discharge to assess model.
- See section 9 of the discharge service policy for a list of actions for care providers (including dom care and other types of care). Note the focus on only accepting discharged people from hospital only when it is safe to do so.
- Section 10 of the discharge service policy outlines how the discharge policy will be funded via the NHS until 31 March 2021. This funding will not pay for:
- Long-term care needs following completion of a Care Act and/or NHS CHC assessment
- Social care or NHS CHC packages that are restarted following discharge from hospital at the same level as that already delivered prior to admission to hospital
- Pre-existing (planned) local authority or CCG expenditure on discharge services
- Annex C gives an overview of discharge decision making and escalation.
Update to PPE guidance on aerosol generating procedures
The PPE guidance on AGPs has been updated to bring guidance on airborne precautions inline with written guidance.
Eviction Ban Extended
The ban on evictions has been extended for another 4 weeks and new 6-month notice periods to be in place until at least 31 March 2021.
CQC would like to hear your views and feedback on changes they’re proposing to make to their Market Oversight guidance.
We’re proposing to make changes to the guidance on our Market Oversight scheme. We’d like to hear stakeholder views and feedback on changes we’re proposing to reflect learning from the first five years of the scheme.
Since April 2015, we’ve had a statutory responsibility to monitor and assess the financial sustainability of those care organisations in England that local authorities would find difficult to replace should they fail and become unable to carry on delivering a service. Collectively, these providers represent around 30% of the adult social care market in England. You can read more about Market Oversight and how it works on our website.
We’ve learnt a lot over the past 5 years and we’re now engaging for 8 weeks on the proposed changes we wish to make to the Market Oversight guidance, to help streamline it, build on our experience and bring it up to date.
We’d value your views and input in responding to a series of questions about the scheme. Visit our website to share your feedback.
NICE: Decision making and mental capacity
NICE has issued a quality standard which covers decision making in people aged 16 and over, using health and social care services who may need help with making their own decisions.
Update to management of staff and exposed patients or residents in health and social care settings guidance
This piece of guidance was updated on the 18 August. Section 4 now includes information about when health and social care staff are exempt from being considered a contact for the purposes of Test and Trace. Please note the following:
“It is important to note that the effectiveness of the use of face masks, face coverings, or other PPE for prevention of transmission or acquisition of coronavirus infection cannot be guaranteed in settings other than the provision of direct care with patients or residents. Therefore, the use of PPE in other settings (such as a staff room or canteen) will not exclude an individual from being considered a close contact.”
CQC: Access to care
CQC has published an update for all providers reminding them of their duties to make sure that local guidelines or decision-making protocols ensure that clinical decisions and pathways are not discriminatory and enable equal access to hospital care and treatment for everyone.
Debbie Ivanova, Deputy Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, has written a blog giving an update on CQC’s managed return to inspection, making regulatory contact with all services and what they are doing in areas of local lockdown.
CQC’s Chief Executive, Ian Trenholm, has also written a blog discussing the immediate priorities for CQC, information about the Transitional Regulatory Approach and further information on the future strategy.
CQC have some new projects for you to get involved with on our online participation platform.
Next steps for Provider Collaboration Reviews
The first series of Provider Collaboration Reviews have focused on the interface between health and adult social care for the over-65 population group, as this group has been particularly affected by coronavirus.
Our ambition is to look at provider collaboration in all Integrated Care Systems (ICS) and Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) areas. We’re keen to hear your views on the areas and pathways of systems, and which different population groups future reviews could focus on.
Research and Evaluation
We strive to be an evidence based regulator. This means making decisions about how we regulate based on clear evidence of what works and what doesn’t.
To support us to do this we’re interested to hear where you think we’d benefit from strengthening our understanding. This could be by;
- undertaking research development
- undertaking evaluation work
- learning from existing research and evidence
Link to the PHE postcode map showing Covid-19 infections. Useful for dynamic assessments.
A message for the registered managers of care homes and/or care home providers
We work in South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and our role is to support the NHS staff who have highly challenging work. We have thousands of staff and support them with a wide range of approaches. We do not provide therapy (although sometimes we signpost them to therapy services if they want that). Mostly we find ways to connect people together and think about how to make their work less stressful.
We know that working in care homes can be equally stressful for staff. We know that care home staff often change quite quickly, perhaps because the job is difficult and the rewards poor, and this can lead to a reliance on bank / agency staff which is not easy for anyone. We are aware that these typical stressors can be felt more acutely during this pandemic.
As we move to becoming one health and social care system, we need to work better together to support each other. We do not think it is possible to provide ‘one approach’ to staff support. Care homes are very varied. You know this field much better than us. You know what the sources of stress and concern are and where things work better. We’d like to build on your expertise to learn how staff can be better supported in care homes in the four main boroughs in which we work – Lambeth, Lewisham, Croydon and Southwark.
We would like to interview you initially to learn from your experiences and understand how we can work with you and your colleagues, perhaps in one or more of your forum meetings, to think about how to better support you and your staff.
Many thanks for your help with this.
With warm regards
Dr Alison Beck
Trust Director of Psychology and Psychotherapy
South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust
Sense: a working group have been reviewing the BAME – COVID 19 Risk Management
Guidance for Sense and have made some significant improvements.
Sense have very generously allowed us to circulate these very useful and highly relevant documents.
The new guidance is attached and now includes:
· More detailed guidance for Managers on having open discussions with their staff team
· Example questions for Managers to help get the most of your conversations.
· A new risk assessment template that should be completed by Managers for all BAME employees
· Control measures table to help you identify local control measures that can be put in place to reduce the risk from COVID-19 for BAME employees
Company no 1825301 Charity no 289868
CQC Inspectors, PPE and Testing
As some of you will have already seen, CQC has laid out its position on testing, PPE and the signing of insurance disclaimers for CQC inspectors. You can read the position in full through this link.
Update to admission to care home guidance
On Friday the admissions to care home guidance had an additional annex (annex K) added to provide information on testing people moving from the community into a care home. The annex sets out a service model for testing people moving from the community into a care. It is very important you read this annex as it sets out a requirement to test any community admission for COVID-19 if they haven’t had a test within the previous 2 days. It also contains a case study.
What to do if your staff have been holidaying and that country has now had quarantine
With France, Netherlands, Belgium and other countries last week added to the list of countries whereby quarantine restrictions have been re-applied and a 14-day self-isolation period is now required for returning travellers, we have had a number of questions from employers about what this means for them.
Questions we’ve had from businesses include:
- What is the position on foreign travel?
- What do employees get paid during this period of self-isolation?
- Can I force an employee to take this self-isolation period as holiday?
- Can I cancel my employee’s holiday?
- Can I manage this within my business?
CQC – Infection prevention and control in care homes
Our inspectors use this set of questions and prompts to look at how well staff and people living in care homes are protected by infection prevention and control (IPC) – key line of enquiry S5.
Hospital discharge and preventing unnecessary hospital admissions (COVID-19)
Updated SCIE Guidance
Help shape a new guidance portal for providers
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and NICE are working together to build a guidance portal for care providers which will sit on GOV.UK. The portal will summarise the key avenues of support and guidance on COVID-19 related issues facing care providers in a simple and accessible way under different headings. The team working on this would like to test these headings out with key stakeholders to ensure they are capturing the most common issues faced by social care providers.
If you are interested in taking part in this work could you please complete this survey on the headings by 5pm on Wednesday 12 August. Please note the headings are still in draft and may change after feedback.
Help improve access to COVID-19 antibody testing
NHS Digital wants to understand how they can support adult social care staff to access COVID-19 Antibody Testing in the community. To support this they would like to speak to people who work in adult social care to understand the experience of ordering kits and collecting data to register tests, as well as taking tests.
Your help will give them a better understanding of the needs of adult social care services and care staff, and help them to build a better service.
Research sessions will be conducted remotely and last approximately 45 minutes. They will ask you some questions and also show you a website prototype. All feedback will be anonymised, stored securely and used only for the purpose of improving the service.
If you are interested in participating, please contact email@example.com.
Social Care Taskforce – BAME Advisory sub-group engagement and survey requests
The BAME Advisory sub-group has been tasked to bring forward a set of recommendations aimed at reducing the risk of COVID-19 specifically to BAME staff working in the social care sector and those that receive care.
In order to inform the work, the sub-group is looking to hear from as many people from BAME backgrounds as possible – staff and those in receipt of care. Please see below for details of two engagement events and two surveys. Please circulate this amongst your staff and those you work with.
BAME workforce Engagement Event (10 August)
BAME Service User Engagement Event (10 August)
BAME Workforce Survey
BAME Service User Survey
Supported Living Guidance
Attached, a summary of what the guidance entails. NCF’s initial reading is that it adopts quite a lot from existing guidance and links to it, such as the domiciliary PPE guidance, rather than anything new. It leaves a lot of the planning, responsibility and operationalisation of the guidance to care providers. In terms of testing, testing will only happen if symptoms are present. There are no mechanisms built-in for asymptomatic testing. We feel there are some odd gaps around what happens to someone in receipt of care if a staff member tests positive – we assume normal Test & Trace procedures would trigger. Please have a read and let us know what you think.
It sets out:
- key messages to assist with planning and preparation in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic so that local procedures can be put in place to minimise risk and provide the best possible support to people in supported living settings.
- safe systems of working including, social distancing, respiratory and hand hygiene and enhanced cleaning; and
- how infection prevention and control (IPC) and personal protective equipment (PPE) applies to supported living settings.
CQC Infection Prevention Control Inspection Toolkit
The tool will be used as CQC increase targeted and focused inspections of high risk services. The tool will be used to gather information about the strengths of a service and to understand if there are any gaps or concerns around IPC where CQC could signpost to resources which could help.
CQC – Updates
Infection, Prevention and Control in Care Homes
Further to our Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) in care homes work we have now published the questions and prompts on our website.
As we increase targeted and focused inspections of high risk services, this tool will be used to look at how well staff and people who live in the care home are protected by the prevention and control of infection (Key Line of Enquiry S5). Over time, we will look to improve and adapt the tool for other types of services.
The tool will help us to gather information about the strengths of a service and to understand if there are any gaps or concerns around IPC where we can signpost to resources which could help.
As we all plan to manage any risk of a second wave of the coronavirus and the impact of winter pressures this helpful tool is something you can use to prepare.
Principles for Innovation in Health and Social Care
We previously shared the link to the Citizenlab project to submit feedback on the Principles for Innovation in Health and Social Care with all Trade Associations. I wanted to re highlight this as the project is only live for one more week. It can be found by logging in here.
Learning & Partnership Virtual Meeting
Thursday August 6th 2020 10.00 – 11.30
Jane Moore from NICE; Staff Wellbeing.
The social care workforce is playing a vital role in the national response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important that all employees feel supported in order for them to continue their valuable work.
Laura Anthony from Skills for Care; with the regular update from SfC.
Richard Whittome New City College Contact details
M: 07703 770587
John Buttle Social Works
M: 07968 195491
Some of you will already have signed up and be members of the RM Network, either personally, or as an organisation. If you haven’t, do look at https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Leadership-management/support-for-registered-managers/membership/membership.aspx and consider the benefits of joining.
Any queries, contact Peter Webb firstname.lastname@example.org 07956878901
Or Dudley Sawyerr email@example.com 07984466130
PPE – Update
PPE Portal Now Open for ALL!
you should have received details of this via your CQC registered e-mail address, if you have not, please check spam / bulk.
Flu Jabs – Update
Opening of ADDITIONAL Ordering from the CRC
We are currently processing the orders already placed and they will arrive before the end of August. We will now be opening additional ordering of free campaign materials for those who have not already ordered for the Health and Social Care Worker flu vaccination campaign. These will be available on the PHE Campaign Resource Centre Health and Social Care Workers Flu Immunisation from the 7th August 2020. The resources ordered through the CRC will arrive in September.
If you have already completed an “I’ve had my flu jab” order form and have received an order confirmation your materials will be delivered late August and you do not need to order from the additional materials from the PHE CRC.
Available to order from the Campaign Resource Centre:
- Posters – showing a range of health and social care staff
- “I’ve had my flu jab “Sticker sheets
- NHS and Social Care A5 Information sheet
- NHS and Social Care Worker Leaflets
Adaptable artwork files and digital and social care materials will be available shortly.
All materials will begin to be distributed from late August.
Your free guide to visitation in care homes
Last month the government announced new guidance on visiting arrangements in care homes, with residents in England now able to be visited by their loved ones, as long as the correct safety measures are in place to protect your residents and your carers.
The experts of our partner, Citation, has summarised all you need to know about putting the government’s guidelines into practice. From creating designated visitor areas to controlling the risk of infection spreading, you can read everything you need to know about the new visitation measures in this free guide.
In this guide, you’ll find more information about:
- How many visitors it’s safe for residents to have;
- Types of visit that comply with social distancing rules;
- Carrying out dynamic risk assessments;
- How to create and communicate a visiting policy.
Want the support of Health & Safety experts?
Are you looking to outsource your Health & Safety? Or would you like to give your in-house team the backing of an external team of experts and 24/7 access to resources and support?
Citation supports care businesses of all types and sizes with managing their Health & Safety and HR & Employment Law. They also have dedicated care products, including a CQC Application (CQC Pro), Care Policies & Procedures, Care Mock Inspections, and more. And as a London Care & Support Forum member, you are entitled to preferential rates on their services.
To discover how they can help your care business, please click below.
Caldicott Principles: a consultation about revising, expanding and upholding the principles
The National Data Guardian for Health and Social Care (NDG) is seeking views on:
- Proposed revisions to the seven existing Caldicott Principles;
- Proposed extension of the Caldicott Principles through the introduction of an additional principle which makes clear that patients’ and service users’ expectations must be considered and informed when confidential information is used;
- The proposal that the NDG uses her statutory power to issue guidance about organisations appointing Caldicott Guardians to uphold the Caldicott Principles.
We’ve provided more information in a background document which you can download from this page. You may find it helpful to read this before answering the consultation survey.
The COVID-19 pandemic has made the experience of bereavement much harder than previously and presents additional challenges when seeking to support bereaved people.
The University of Cambridge alliative and End of Life Care Research Group is undertaking a national survey of a wide range of people who are supporting bereaved people during the pandemic. We would be very grateful if you could complete the anonymous survey at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/V97QP5Q which takes less than five minutes to complete.
It would appear this was sent to Local Authorities on Friday but not care providers.
It confirms the DHSC has revised their previously advised timelines:
- They will now reach all care homes for older people and people with dementia by the 7 September 2020.
- If you have already started regular testing, there may be a wait for your second month’s order to be fulfilled until they have reached all care homes for older people and people with dementia.
- All other adult care homes will be able to start to place orders for test kits from the 31 August 2020.
Between now and 7 September they will take steps to target testing capacity where it is most needed.
Do also note that from 7 August, care homes will be able to bulk register tests.
Rapid 90-minute Tests
We also have news that rapid 90-minute tests – which use saliva or swabs – are being rolled out to care homes and hospitals. The LamPORE tests are going to care homes from next week – although we don’t have any actual implementation details. We are bemused why this announcement hasn’t been joined up with the announcement about the whole home testing delay.
It appears these tests can detect COVID-19 as well as other winter viruses.
LCAS recorded webinars – risk assessment and mental health
LCAS have co-produced three recorded webinars with Citation, the first two of which can be watched on-demand here.
Staff and mental health
It is essential that employers understand the importance of staff wellbeing all of the time, and especially now. The impact that COVID-19 has had on many staff in the sector has been huge, and we should not assume that everybody is coping.
With that in mind, some of the key discussion points within the webinar include:
- What employers do to ensure they are supporting their staff with wellbeing and mental health;
- Practical solutions for how providers can monitor both service user and staff mental health and wellbeing;
- Managing driving risk, tiredness and stress from the additional pressures of COVID-19, particularly in domiciliary care.
COVID-19 risk assessments
With this and the HSE rapidly increasing the regularity of its spot checks, putting your COVID-secure risk assessment (s) in place has to be your number one priority.
To help care providers get to grips with risk assessments and avoid common pitfalls, LCAS has co-produced a bite-sized recorded webinar with Health & Safety experts, Citation. This 15-minute webinar provides some actionable top tips.
Some of the key discussion points within the webinar include:
- The measures that providers need to consider in respect of their infection control arrangements;
- How care providers can make sure their staff are aware of what they need to do;
- Any specific issues providers need to consider with respect to vulnerable staff or at-risk groups, such as BAME.
Got any questions or looking for support?
If you’d like to discuss any aspects of the Health & Safety side of your business or are looking for external support, please click here. You can book a one-hour slot with Citation to chat about your LCAS member benefit and the support they offer.
DHSC Request for PPE Invoice Data
DHSC has extended the time available to submit evidence to Friday 7 August. I have reattached the letter explaining what they want and the excel document for data entry.
DHSC Survey on COVID-19 Communications
DHSC is seeking views from providers on social care COVID-19 communications. The survey is open until Thursday 6 August.
Managing community outbreaks: Actions for Social Care
See this letter from David Pearson, Head of the Social Care Taskforce, to ADASS, LGA, Better Care Support Team, NHS, Association of Directors of Public Health, CQC and CPA.
The letter outlines that the Taskforce is undertaking some work with Test and Trace and the Contain programme nationally to align advice. In view of this they have suggested that there is a simulation exercise and that they invite colleagues to take part in this.
In the meantime, from the work undertaken in Leicester the following advice about actions in the event over concern about outbreaks or rising cases has been formulated.
- DASS: Inform all care providers of the heightened risk from increased community transmission
- DASS: Advise of the need to follow the guidance on Infection, Prevention and Control and social distancing, including between staff in communal areas providing links to the relevant guidance
- DASS /DPH /CCG /CQC: Review quantitative and qualitative data on risk and the areas of highest transmission i.e. those that have experienced one or more outbreaks and/or have not recovered. Including infection levels, deaths (COVID and other causes) and other quality concerns
- DASS: Ensure frequent/regular calls to care homes on questions of infection control, risk assessments, outbreaks, staffing (isolating, sickness and capacity, PPE supply, test results)
- CCG/DASS: Assure clinical lead arrangements in Primary Care support for care homes and residents
- DASS/DPH: Consider reprioritising testing to high priority areas and review visiting policies
- DASS/Providers: Reviewing high risk factors, e.g. reducing staff movement (including re-viewing other employment); paying full pay for sickness absence; social distancing outside work
- DASS/CCG/CQC: Risk summits, audit and review of higher risk settings
PPE Illustrated guide for community and social care settings
PHE has published guidance which illustrates:
- which PPE to wear depending on where and how you are working
- how to work safely using your PPE and safer working practices to protect staff and residents
Job Retention Bonus
A policy paper has been published by HMRC detailing eligibility requirements and what employers need to do now to claim the bonus. Full guidance will be published at the end of September.
Whole Home Testing – Randox and new tests
You will be aware of the fiasco with Randox and the inability to source enough tests for weekly testing for most of you. There is a wait for a formal letter with a new timetable from DHSC. In the meantime it looks like DHSC have updated the timeline on the getting tested page. It now states that applications for retesting for adult care homes for under-65s won’t open until 31 August. This would imply that it may be some weeks until the regular testing routine is back to the way it was before Randox tests were withdrawn for care homes for over-65s.
Management of staff and exposed patients and residents in health and social care
This guidance now contains information on the re-testing of staff. Section 3 states:
“Staff who have previously tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 by PCR should be exempt from re-testing within a period of 6 weeks from their initial illness onset, unless they develop new symptoms, in which case they will need retesting.
If staff are tested by PCR after 6 weeks from their initial illness onset and are still found to be positive for SARS-CoV-2, this could be due to a persistently positive test associated with the original infection, rather than a new infection as fragments of inactive virus can remain for some time following infection. If they have developed new possible COVID-19 symptoms after 6 weeks, they would need to self-isolate again. If, however, they are asymptomatic, further management should be discussed with an infection specialist (for example a specialist in microbiology, virology or infectious diseases) before a decision is made regarding another self-isolation period.”
It also has been updated to reflect the extension of the self-isolation guidance from 7 to 10 days as well as the 14 days isolation period for staff and patients who are admitted to hospital.
Visiting care homes guidance
This guidance has been updated to say that no one should be allowed to enter a care home if they are currently experiencing or first experienced COVID-19 symptoms in the last 10 days. It also advises that visitors cycle or walk to the care home.
Changes to Easing of Lockdown
As you will have seen, the last few days have seen some significant changes in the ‘roadmap to recovery’ for easing lockdown. The PM, in a briefing today, (Friday) announced more details on North of England restrictions (see below) as well as the delay to easements that were supposed to come into force tomorrow.
Delaying proposed changes
The following changes proposed for 1 August have been delayed:
- remaining leisure settings such as bowling, skating rinks and casinos will remain closed
- indoor performances will not be permitted
- restrictions will remain on the highest risk close contact services, such as treatments on the face
- Guidance on weddings and civil partnerships is unchanged but receptions exceeding the guidance on gatherings in your local area are banned
- Guidance on visiting care homes is unchanged except if there is an outbreak or community hotspots leading to local lockdown.
With the exception of areas in local restrictions, the pause on shielding is going ahead tomorrow (1 August.) Guidance on the pausing of shielding can be found here.
The list of areas where face coverings are mandatory is being extended from 8 August and will be enforced.
The government has left it up to employers to decide whether employees should work from home or the office.
Workforce Advisory Group – Adult Social Care Taskforce
The workforce advisory group is one of the 8 advisory groups feeding into the government Adult Social Care Taskforce, chaired by David Pearson. The advisory group is meeting a total of 5 times over July/August. It will meet for the last time on the 5th August to agree a set of recommendations for the Task Force. There are currently two public documents (below, and these have already been circulated previously) produced by the group and more are likely to follow. The first looks at how the role of the front line care worker has changed during COVID-19. The second focusses on the things we need to do in order to ensure we have the workforce that we need.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions about these documents or the advisory group more broadly.
Government threw care homes ‘to the wolves’ at the height of the pandemic, find MPs
25,000 patients were discharged from hospitals into care homes without ensuring all were first tested for COVID-19.
World Health Organisation
Preventing and managing COVID-19 across long-term care services
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected older people disproportionately, especially those living in long-term care facilities. In many countries, evidence shows that more than 40% of COVID-19 related deaths have been linked to long-term care facilities, with figures being as high as 80% in some high-income countries. Furthermore, in long-term care facilities, the case fatality for residents with COVID-19 may be higher than in the population of the same age living outside long-term care facilities. Residents of long-term care facilities often face high risk, low preventive measures and inadequate resources to recover from COVID-19, as well as reduced access to essential health services in a context where health systems are experiencing constraints during the COVID-19 surge. The impact of COVID-19 has additionally been high in providers of long-term care services, within longterm facilities and in other settings. A 2020 study by the United Kingdom Office for National Statistics of deaths by occupation found that the social care workforce had a significantly raised death rate associated with COVID-19.
IPPR Report: Resilient health and care: Learning the lessons of Covid-19
Covid-19 is one of the biggest shocks in modern peacetime history. It has caused huge loss of life, and severely impacted both our society and our economy. It might be tempting to see the outbreak as a case of bad luck – a one-off event from which we should return to normal, as soon as possible. This would, however, be a mistake.
The evidence is clear that global disease outbreaks are a growing threat. We should, therefore, approach Covid-19 like a natural disaster. When flooding or earthquakes occur, it is always important to build back with flood defences and resilient construction. We need to do the same in the health and care system.
Are you being paid on time, for example by a local authority? All local authorities (we believe) are signed up to this code.
The Prompt Payment Code (PPC) is a voluntary code of practice for businesses, administered by the Office of the Small Business Commissioner (SBC) on behalf of BEIS. It was established in December 2008 and sets standards for payment practices between organisations of any size and their suppliers.
The Ethos of the Code
Signatories have always undertaken to:
1) pay suppliers on time, within agreed terms;
2) give clear guidance to suppliers on terms, dispute resolution and prompt notification of late payment;
3) support good practice throughout their supply chain by encouraging adoption of the Code.
The Code has subsequently been strengthened and requires signatories to undertake to pay 95% of invoices within a maximum of 60 days, work towards adopting 30 days as the norm and avoid any practices that adversely affect the supply chain.
Social Care Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT)
A new version of the Toolkit is being developed for use by care providers. We want to ensure that the questions contained within the Toolkit are more easily understood by care providers. We are therefore seeking the views of providers of adult social care.
To access the survey
CQC’s participation platform
Get involved and share your ideas on their work
This is a valuable and useful opportunity for you as experienced and highly trained professionals to contribute to the future of social care regulation.
DH&SC Advice on mask wearing
The requirement to wear face coverings in shops and supermarkets from 24 July and how to support those who are exempt. The updated guidance on face coverings has now been published and is available here:
Staff and employees are expected to act reasonably and not challenge people on why they are not wearing a face covering. Some people may feel more comfortable with a visual cue showing they do not have to wear a face covering. The updated guidance includes a link to ‘exemption card templates’ that are suggested for this purpose.
CQC – How to get the most out of inspection: What a good inspection looks and feels like
CQC has come together with partners from across the adult social care sector to set out key principles and a shared understanding so that everyone gets the most out of inspection. The new document, published today, addresses common misunderstandings and describes clear expectations to ensure effective joint working which will ultimately result in better care for people.
Sue Howard, Deputy Chief inspector for Adult Social Care, said “I am delighted that we have been able to come together constructively to draw up these guidelines which will benefit care providers and their staff, our inspectors and the people using the service.”
“As the Adult Social Care sector continues to adjust to the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to establish mutual understanding and support in carrying out inspections.“
Lisa Lenton, Chair, Care Providers Alliance, said “Effective relationships are based on communication and collaboration and we welcome this document that outlines the expectations for both providers and inspectors during an inspection. This has been a joint piece of work between CQC and provider representative bodies to set these key principles to ensure everyone involved gets the most from inspection – most importantly of course, for the benefit people who access care and support services.”
While routine inspections have been paused, CQC have continued to inspect in response to risk and concerns raised, and services have remained subject to close monitoring using a range of intelligence sources.
At the heart of this new publication is the need to establish good communication and an understanding that everyone is working to achieve the same outcome: great quality care for people using services. It also recognises the need for respect and dignity of all parties during an inspection as one of the key themes running throughout all stages of an inspection.
Social Works WDF supported training
as mentioned in the RM V-meeting July 23rd 2020
Social Works Limited
Tel: 020 7277 9117
Mob: 07968 195 491
Sustaining Work-Relevant Mental Health Post COVID-19 Toolkit
This toolkit presents a range of information and guidance which aims to assist organisations and staff in managing work-relevant mental health. It is not a definitive document, but rather endeavours to be a useful and comprehensive resource providing an evidenced-based approach to supporting mental health in the workplace. The toolkit’s objective is to offer focused and practical solutions to reduce, or eliminate, problems which contribute to work-relevant mental ill health. In doing so, the toolkit’s purpose is to both help protect the workforce and the organisation during the post COVID-19 period.
Update on policies for visiting arrangements in care homes
Our first priority continues to be to reduce the risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission in care homes 1 and prevent future outbreaks, to ensure the health and safety of both care workers and residents. We appreciate the challenges which care homes, as distinct from other health and care settings, face in safeguarding their residents from infection, and the particular risks of outbreaks of infection in care homes.
We recognise that lockdown has been difficult for many residents and families over the past few months and that visits are important for all those in care settings. Directors of public health and care providers should follow this guidance to ensure policies for visiting arrangements and decisions are based on a dynamic risk assessment and minimise risk wherever possible.
Infection control in care settings: an essential, free checklist
Infection prevention and control has always been important in care settings, but now more so than ever.
As part of the Emergency Support Framework (ESF) developed by the CQC, the first discussion area of the framework is ‘Safe Care and Treatment’. Specifically, the first question your inspector could ask during your telephone conversation is ‘Had risks related to infection prevention and control, including in relation to COVID-19, been assessed and managed?’
To give you a helping hand with your duties, the in-house care experts of Citation have shared a handful of key questions they ask care providers when inspecting their site, specifically relating to infection prevention and control.
THE ROLE OF THE CARE WORKER
Public Output from the First meeting of the Workforce Advisory Group Meeting on the 8th July 2020
The Workforce Advisory Group has been formed to support the Adult Social Care Taskforce. The remit of the advisory group is:-
- Implementation of the Social Care action plan: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-adult-social-care-action-plan
- Implementation of the Care Homes Support Package: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-support-for-care-homes/coronavirus-covid-19-care-home-support-package
- Proposals as part of the overall advice to government on what should be in place in the coming months and in time for Winter
Thought provoking and very useful article by Wayne Reid, BASW England professional officer and social worker. Lots of information on how to deal with this in the workplace.
PPE resources for care home and domiciliary care were published yesterday evening.
Thank you all for your contributions throughout the process of updating these resources.
These resources have been updated from the previous version of this document as follows:
- incorporates recommendation (July 2020) for the use of face masks and coverings in care
- homes to prevent COVID-19 transmission as follows:
- a third table has been added
- additional questions and answers have been added including adapting advice provided by NHS England for hospital settings to this context
- updates to some existing questions and answers have been made
Links below remain unchanged from previous versions:
Social Works fully-funded high-quality training for new adult social care workers
Sessions now starting again every Thursday.
Over 4 days home virtual study with us your new recruits cover both the Care Certificate (Knowledge)* and the Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Medication Handling and Administration for Care Settings (RQF).
Learners welcome from any organisation claiming WDF funding**
All is taught, by experienced and qualified trainers with extensive adult social care experience. We use a mix of Zoom conferencing, email and telephone support as well as a wealth of resources and guidance material.
All training includes extra learning on Covid-19.
Learners will need access to a Laptop/PC/Tablet, a reasonable understanding of written and spoken English, and the commitment to spend 5-6 hours a day studying with us.
To get your learners enrolled, just send us their details (name, email, telephone) as soon as you can, with their preferred start date. Learners will need to be registered with us the day before training begins.
Contact us today to book or find out more.
John Buttle firstname.lastname@example.org / 020 7277 9117 / 07968 195491
*Please note the 4 days funded training covers the Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Medication Handling and Administration for Care Settings (RQF), as well as all the Care Certificate Knowledge Standards except Basic Life Support, which you can either cover inhouse, or Social Works Ltd can do it for you over an additional ½ day training which you will need to contact us directly to arrange). “*To access Skills for Care Workforce Development Funding you will need to engage with the ASC Workforce Data Set (previously known as the NMDS-SC) and join a local employer partnership.
Flu Vaccination Campaign 2020
“I’ve had my flu jab” health and social care worker flu vaccination campaign delivered by Public Health England (PHE). “I’ve had my flu jab” continues last year’s shield motif to emphasise the protective benefit of the flu vaccination and message “Protects You, Your family and patients from the flu, You can give the flu to your family and patients without having any symptoms. Protect those close to you.” to encourage the uptake of flu vaccinations by health and social care workers.
This year we are offering free print materials as well as digital resources to social care organisations, the materials will feature the CARE logo and will be part of a comms toolkit including posters, stickers and leaflets that can be ordered and social media and other resources that can be downloaded from the Health and Social Care Workers Flu Immunisation and used and adapted to suit local need
There will be a range of digital resources available for download:
- Comms toolkit including brand guidelines
- HSCW presentation
- Editable files
- Social assets of the following health and social care workers for Twitter, Facebook and Instagram:
- Mental Health Nurse
- Social Worker
- Community Health Worker
The printed materials will be available to order using this order form – https://partnerships.wufoo.com/forms/zo2cqka10i61at/
The national flu immunisation programme 2020/21
Local Authority Funding – Covid-19
The Care Association Alliance is working to bring together all of our experiences with COVID-19 and funding support to social care providers from Local Authorities. Please see the link below for a survey that we have put together. We will then bring together the results and share these with LCAS, and try to get some momentum behind a PR drive to try and shame those authorities that are being particularly difficult.
Cleaning of non-healthcare settings
PHE has issued guidance on cleaning non-healthcare settings outside the home. The guidance does not apply to settings where care is being delivered but will be relevant for office environments.
The PPE portal was updated this week with the ability to order visors. It also appears that the limits have also been increased. It is still aimed at ‘small’ care providers.
Face coverings will now be required in shops from 24 July in England. Guidance has been issued in preparation for this and to explain the other settings where face coverings need to be worn.
Testing in Care Homes: DHSC Statistics
DHSC has published statistics to 8 July about the testing in care homes.
It states that 741,021 tests (including those for family members) have been carried out for social care as a whole. 352,946 tests have been carried out for care home residents in Pillar 2 (swab testing through commercial partnerships). Note, that for both figures this isn’t the same as people being tested – an individual can receive more than one test.
Is estimated that an additional 100,900 residents of care homes have been tested via Pillar 1 testing (PHE labs and NHS hospitals). Pillar 1 testing counts the individuals being tested rather than the number of tests carried out.
Delay of Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS) Implementation
The new Health and Care Visa will make it cheaper, quicker and easier for healthcare professionals from around the world to come to the UK.
CQC Strategy 2021: Smarter regulation for a safer future webinar, July 13th 2020.
Please find attached the meeting presentation used in the webinar. A recording of this webinar, and the other themes in this series, will be available on the CQC website soon.
You can also help shape our strategy by taking part in these short surveys and feeding back your views on the ‘Driving and supporting improvement’ theme:
- Phase 1 https://citizenlabco.typeform.com/to/U5n4ngTO
- Phase 2 https://citizenlabco.typeform.com/to/LaXjbV00
If you would like to feedback on other emerging strategic themes you can do this through our digital participation platform by signing up or logging in here.
Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT)
The Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT) is a free, online self-assessment tool that enables health and social care organisations to demonstrate their compliance with data protection standards. Completing the toolkit will demonstrate your good practice and it is your service’s passport to accessing NHS shared care records. That’s going to be more and more important as time goes on – but care providers have often found the toolkit a struggle.
Could you help us improve the toolkit? We just need ten minutes of your time, please click on this link to complete our survey designed to find out which questions make the most sense in practice. Thank you!
Domiciliary care staff COVID-19 prevalence survey
The findings of PHE’s prevalence survey shows that the prevalence of COVID-19 among domiciliary care workers who are currently working is in line with the general population (0.1% with a 95% confidence interval of 0.02%-0.40% compared with 0.09% (95% confidence interval 0.04% – 0.19%) in the general population) and not a higher prevalence as observed in studies of front line healthcare workers and care home staff.
Potentially infectious people: Public health officers application of Schedule 21 to Coronavirus Act 2020
This guidance outlines the powers public health officers have in regards to potentially infectious people in England.
CQC plans for rapid reviews for local areas response to COVID-19
CQC is planning Provider Collaboration Reviews (PCRs) focussed on 11 Integrated Care System (ICS) or Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) areas. The reviews will support providers across systems by sharing learning, helping to drive improvements and prepare for future pressures on local health and care systems.
Steps to take following the death of a person who worked in adult social care in England
DHSC has updated this guidance with a new section on informing the coroner.
Support for business from outside government
The government has a webpage dedicated to listing where businesses can get support from public bodies, organisations and charities.
Purchasing medical devices for social care – MHRA
This link takes you to a presentation by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). It details which items providers should buy, how and why decisions to expediate CE marking was made, and how providers can find out if a non-CE marked product is suitable.
Guidance for managing a funeral
The guidance for managing a funeral during the pandemic has been updated. Changes include:
- allowing both family and friends to attend a funeral
- the number of people who can attend a funeral
- allowing mourners to stay overnight outside their home
- the safe management of the funeral venue
SCIE Day Centre Guidance
SCIE has written some guidance for community-based day services, day centres and those with outdoor spaces. It includes guidance for re-opening. SCIE are happy to receive feedback and make changes to this guidance so do let us know if you think anything should be changed or added.
How to get the most out of inspection – What a good inspection looks and feels like
BAME workforce – COVID-19 recovery and beyond
Supportive leadership during COVID-19
This is the first in a series of webinars which is part of wider work being undertaken by Skills for Care to find out more about the experiences of social care workers from a BAME background during the pandemic.
We know that people from BAME backgrounds account for 1 in 5 of the social care workforce in England and research by Public Health England revealed that people of Chinese, Indian, Pakistani, Other Asian, Caribbean and Other Black ethnicity had between 10 and 50% higher risk of death when compared to White British.
To help us deliver the best possible support to workers from BAME backgrounds we need to know more about the direct impact on them across the sector.
All webinars will be facilitated by Paul Daly, Skills for Care and Sophie Chester-Glynn, who as well as being a frontline employer, leads the popular weekly online discussion programme Chat for Carers.
Each webinar will feature a panel of BAME leaders with lived experiences and the discussion will focus on sharing understanding and generating ideas around the key issues.
Participants will explore their own experiences, hear good practice examples and pose questions to panel members. They will have the opportunity at a later date to delve deeper into some of these emerging themes during the peer coaching sessions.
|Tuesday 14 July 2020
11:00 – 12:00
Online event – via Zoom
RM Meeting July 9th
All the presentations, contact details, etc are now available at
Next meeting July 23rd 09.45 – 11.15 (please note earlier start time)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 995 3306 6044
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CQC: Support our new campaign to encourage more people to speak up about their
Today, we launch Because We All Care, a new campaign led by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and Healthwatch England. It aims to help services identify and address quality issues and support patients in response to COVID-19 by encouraging people to share feedback on their experiences of health and social care services in England.
CQC is responsible for monitoring, inspecting and regulating all health and social care services in the country. Healthwatch England is the independent national champion for people who use health and social care services. The campaign will be targeting all health and social care users in England, and front-line staff working in health and social care, both nationally and regionally. Throughout the year we’ll be focusing on different population groups including people with a learning disability and/ or autism, carers, people with a long-term condition and older adults. We’ll also be continuously working to reach out to Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) and people from communities that we don’t usually hear from on a regular basis.
We’d greatly appreciate your support, here are some ways you can use our campaign toolkit to get involved:
- Share the campaign messaging and images on social media
- Use the #BecauseWeAllCare to spread the word
- Retweet or share content from CQC, Healthwatch and other partners social channels
- Contribute case study stories
- Supporting the campaign on your website’s news page, homepage or blog
- Highlight the campaign in your newsletters and bulletins
- Reference or support the campaign through your press activity
Register now for regular testing of care home staff and residents
From the 6th of July we are starting to roll out weekly testing of staff and testing of residents every 28 days, in all care homes without a current outbreak.
Care homes will need to re-register on the care home portal to apply for regular testing.
Applications for regular testing are now open for care homes caring for the over-65s and those with dementia.
Guidance on Shielding
The shielding guidance for people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable has been updated to reflect the changes that came into force today. People who are shielding will:
- no longer need to socially distance from people they live with
- be able to meet in a group of up to 6 people outdoors, including people from other households
- may form a ‘support bubble’ with one other household
- still be able to get a food box, care and/or medicine delivery until 31 July (if registered online by 17 July).
From 1 August, the government will pause shielding unless the transmission of COVID-19 in the community starts to rise significantly.
Letter from David Pearson
Attached, a letter from David Pearson which repeats the importance of reducing staff movement between care homes. It also gives an overview of what the Social Care Taskforce will be doing.
Skills for Care survey for BAME care workers
Skills for Care is launching a survey and a series of webinar and peer coaching to find out more about the experiences of social care workers from a BAME background. Please encourage care workers from BAME communities to take part in this survey – this will help Skills for Care understand what the best possible way to support these workers will be.
Adult Social Care Testing Strategy
Regular retesting rolled out for care homes + rapid testing for outbreaks
From Monday staff and residents in care homes for over-65s and those with dementia will receive regular, repeated testing. Staff will be tested weekly and residents every 28 days. In August this will be expanded to all care homes. You can now use the coronavirus whole home testing portal to apply for re-tests. Please start doing this ASAP.
Please also find attached a letter from the Director General of Adult Social Care, Rosamond Roughton. This details how the new testing strategy will work for both care homes with (from 13 July) and without outbreaks (from 6 July). See Annex B of the letter which explains the logistics of re-testing.
Note that bank, agency and visiting staff (such as social workers and Allied Health Professionals) working in care homes will be included in the weekly staff tests in care homes.
Testing for extra care, supported living
The letter from Rosamond Roughton also contains information about testing for other care settings – something NCF is calling for. However we have no timescales.
Extra care and supported living environments will soon see an expansion of testing to them. An initial round of testing for staff and residents will happen for those settings which meet certain risk-based criteria. The data from the initial round of testing in extra care and supported living will be used to shape how re-testing for these settings will work.
Testing for domiciliary care
The letter from Rosamond Roughton also contains information about testing for dom care settings. They are awaiting the results of a prevalence study from PHE before rolling out asymptomatic testing for domiciliary care. Again, we have no timescales on this.
Updates to Guidance
Young Carers & Adult Carers Guidance
DHSC has released guidance for those under 25 years of age who provide care for someone who cannot cope without their support.
Local Outbreak Plans
The Association of Directors of Public Health have put together an explainer about Local Outbreak Plans to understand what they are and how they will work.
PPE & VAT
The removal of VAT on PPE has been extended until the end of October.
Invitation and Agenda
Registered Manager Partnership Virtual Meeting
Thursday July 9th 2020 10.00 – 11.30
Introductions; Peter Webb LCAS & Dudley Sawyerr Chair
We would ask that you use a camera when attending these v-meetings.
To join the meeting on Thursday July 9th 2020 10.00 – 11.30
Meeting ID: 932 6641 0450
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Jennifer Orgill of Social Works and Dudley Sawyerr of People Care Services; Diversity in the Workplace. A highly topical discussion about a subject that affects the lives of many both working in and supported by Social Care.
Jane Sproat and Ezra Kanyimo from the NHS; Enhanced Care in Care Homes. This great iniative, The Enhanced Health in Care Homes (EHCH) model moves away from traditional reactive models of care delivery towards proactive care that is centred on the needs of individual residents, their families and care home staff. Such care can only be achieved through a whole-system, collaborative approach
Laura Anthony from Skills for Care; SfC have been supporting the sector with Covid-19 information and updates. Along with support for recruitment and training.
Some of you will already have signed up and be members of the RM Network, either personally, or as an organisation. If you haven’t, do look at https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Leadership-management/support-for-registered-managers/membership/membership.aspx and consider the benefits of joining.
Any queries, please contact Peter Webb email@example.com 07956878901
Or Dudley Sawyerr firstname.lastname@example.org 07984466130
DH&SC Testing announcement; July 3rd
Regular retesting rolled out for care home staff and residents
- Care home staff to be given coronavirus tests every week and residents monthly from Monday to identify anyone with the virus and reduce transmission
- Repeat testing will be initially prioritised for care homes primarily looking after over 65s or those with dementia before being rolled out to all adult care homes
- The Government’s Vivaldi 1 care home study highlights the importance of regular staff testing while there is a higher prevalence in care homes
Care home staff and residents in care homes for over 65s and those with dementia will receive regular coronavirus tests from next week as part of a new social care testing strategy.
Staff will be tested for coronavirus weekly, while residents will receive a test every 28 days to prevent the spread of coronavirus in social care. This is in addition to intensive testing in any care home facing an outbreak, or at increased risk of an outbreak.
The new testing strategy comes following the latest advice from SAGE and new evidence from the Vivaldi 1 study indicating a higher prevalence in care homes, and therefore a case for frequent testing in care homes and their staff.
The Vivaldi 1 study, which surveyed almost 9,000 care home managers and analysed data from whole care home testing, identified the higher levels of the virus among care staff, particularly among temporary staff who work in multiple care settings. The study suggests that care home staff may be at increased risk of contracting the virus, which they may then pass on to others if they have no symptoms.
The National Data Guardian for Health and Social Care (NDG) is seeking views on:
- Proposed revisions to the seven existing Caldicott Principles
- Proposed extension of the Caldicott Principles through the introduction of an additional principle which makes clear that patients’ and service users’ expectations must be considered and informed when confidential information is used
- The proposal that the NDG uses her statutory power to issue guidance about organisations appointing Caldicott Guardians to uphold the Caldicott Principles.
The consultation can be found on the .gov website.
Sharing information between adult health and social care services
The Professional Record Standards Body has launched two surveys looking for your opinions on the information that needs to be shared between health and social care.
Direct Payments advice updated
The advice for people who buy care and support through direct payment, as well as local authorities, CCGs and those who provide care and support, has been updated. There is now additional information about keeping a temporary record of the shift patterns of PAs for 21 days.
Guidance for Taking Swab Samples
PHE has uploaded 2 new videos on how to swab for COVID-19 for social care staff.
Additional funding for Local Authorities
The government announced a new support package for councils today aimed at ensuring councils’ financial sustainability. This includes:
- Further £500 million
- New scheme will also reimburse councils for lost income and allow council and business rates tax deficits to be repaid over 3 years instead of one.
Nothing additional has been offered for social care in this announcement.
CQC: Adult inpatient survey 2019
- Most questions on the theme of being treated in a respectful and dignified manner continued a trend of sustained improvement over the last 3-6 years
- Results show communication between staff and patients before and after operations is improving
- Patients continue to report positively when asked about the cleanliness of the hospital environment, the choice of food available to them and hydration
- Confidence in doctors and nurses also remains high this year
However, this year’s results indicate that there are areas in need of improvement:
- Patients consistently reported less positive experiences for the themes of: communication at the point of discharge and consideration of the support they will need after leaving hospital
- Results for information sharing in relation to medicines, including: explaining the purpose, being told about possible side effects and being given written or printed information all declined this year
- The percentage of people experiencing shortages in nursing staff remains high
Certain groups of patients consistently reported poorer experiences of their time in hospital, including:
- Patients with dementia or Alzheimer’s
- Younger patients (aged 16 to 35)
- Patients who were admitted in an emergency
See the statistical release for more information, including the results for all questions and contextual policy information.
Care Funding Guidance
Care Funding Guidance is a not for profit organisation that provides free advice to the public seeking information about how they can fund care, their options and alternatives. This is a very useful service and one that can save you, as provider organisations a good deal of time.
The contact at and founder of Care Funding Guidance is Owain Wright and these their contact details for any further questions that you may have.
OWAIN WRIGHT FOUNDER
CARE FUNDING GUIDANCE LTD
Tel: 0800 055 6225I
The document below is one you can download, or send on. It is comprehensive and answers many points that you may be asked.
Applying for a moratorium under the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020
The government has issued guidance on how to apply for breathing space to consider a rescue plan for your company as part of measures to support companies and other types of businesses in financial difficulty.
Test and Trace FAQ for workplaces
Please find attached an FAQ on the Test and Trace service. This is a generic FAQ for all workplaces and is correct as of 16.6.20. For specific advice in a residential care environment, please refer to the Admissions to Care Home Guidance.
Care Home Testing Kits Guidance
Guidance for the Randox and non-Randox testing kits has been reviewed and updated regarding the issue of consent. See pages 4 & 8 in both documents.
Notification of deaths and disease amongst social care workers
Please find attached a letter from the campaign for Reporting, Notification, Infection and Protection to Prevent COVID 19 deaths in workers. This is a group of independent health and social care professionals who have come together around the issue of the safety and wellbeing of HSCWs, stimulated by concerns that emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic. You may find it useful to circulate this letter or the information within it to managers and Responsible Persons. It reminds them of their legal responsibilities for notification of deaths and disease amongst social care workers.
Consultation for social care providers about verification of expected death with clinical remote support
Skills for Care is working together with NHS England and NHS Improvement to develop supportive guidance and resources for the social care sector in line with the recently published government guidance COVID-19: verifying death in times of emergency.
They have developed the following consultation resources for the social care sector to support with decision-making, what to consider about the verification of expected death (VOED) process and a step-by-step process infographic:
Skills for Care is looking to gather feedback from the sector on the consultation resources and have created a short feedback survey. The survey closes at 17:00 on Tuesday 7 July.
Expansion to Testing Sites
DHSC has announced another expansion to testing sites:
- 6 new walk through local testing sites for people without cars in Newcastle, Rochdale, Leeds, Brent, Newham and Slough.
- 236 mobile testing units will be in operation by the end of July
A message from David Pearson
Director of the Adult Social Care, Health and Public Protection department
In the most recent DHSC bulletin for social care, David Pearson has written a message about the new social care taskforce and thanked the social care workforce for its ‘incredible service’ over the last couple of months.
Social Care Organisation insurance
Many concerns have been raised about insurance renewals, if you would like advice from a social care insurance sector expert, contact
Senior Business Development Executive
M: 07768 314 298
A: Ground Floor, Interchange, 81-85 Station Road, Croydon, CR0 2AJ
Co-production Week – July 6th to 10th July
Co-production is about working in equal partnership with people using services, carers, families and citizens. Co-production offers the chance to transform social care and health provision to a model that offers people real choice and control.
For more details see the SCIE website
We have lots of new projects for you to get involved with on our online participation platform.
Strategy 2021: Smarter regulation for a safer future
We want to be a world-class regulator able to drive improvements in how people experience health and care services, working towards a safer future.
To achieve this vision, we are developing a bold new strategy from 2021 that builds on our successes and values, and keeps our purpose central.
The below projects exploring our emerging strategic themes are now live for you to share your views;
- Strategy 2021: Theme 1 Driven by People’s Needs
- Strategy 2021: Theme 2 Smarter Regulation
- Webinars coming soon!
We will update this folder over the next few months to give you the opportunity to feedback.
Join our webinars
We’ve used what we’ve heard so far to develop four emerging strategy themes, which this July webinar series will introduce you to:
Theme 1 – Driving and supporting improvement SOLD OUT
- Presenter: Kate Terroni, Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care
- Date: 13 July, 14:30 -15:30
Theme 2 – Promoting safe care for people LIMITED PLACES
- Presenter: Professor Ted Baker, Chief Inspector of Hospitals
- Date: 14 July, 14:00 – 15:00
Theme 3 – Smarter regulation PLACES GOING FAST
- Presenter: Kirsty Shaw, Chief Operating Officer
- Date: 17 July, 13:30 – 14:30
Theme 4 – Systems and meeting people’s needs PLACES GOING FAST
- Presenter: Dr Rosie Benneyworth, Chief Inspector of Primary Medical Services and Integrated Care
- Dates: 22 July, 14:00 – 15:00 and 23 July, 12:00 – 13:00
These one-hour webinars are aimed at health and social care providers, health and social care professionals, strategic partners and trade associations.
COVID-19 Feedback from Providers
Thank you to those who have posted an idea or completed a survey through this difficult time. All your feedback helps us to adapt our approach to regulation, and to inform conversations with government and the wider health & social care system. The below projects are now available for your views;
- As we move from our emergency response to the coronavirus pandemic towards a more planned and regular programme of inspection, we’d like to hear your views.
- Let us know about the issues impacting you right now
- Feedback on CQC’s response to the pandemic
- Feedback on Your understanding of the purpose of the Emergency Support Framework (ESF)
- Feedback on your experience of the ESF in ASC
- Feedback on your experience of the ESF in PMS – more sectors coming soon!
- Ensuring that people receive safe, effective and high-quality care during the pandemic
Debunking the myth: Hand sanitiser in cars DO NOT pose a fire risk
You may have received via the NHS or LA, a notification about a hand sanitiser fire risk alert.
UK Fire Chiefs Council has debunked this issue
Staying alert and safe (social distancing guidance)
The social distancing guidance has been updated to include guidance that will come into force on 4 July. If you click on the link you will see two html documents – guidance that is currently in force and guidance that comes into force on 4th July. See the section on clinically vulnerable people and 2.3 in particular. Not enough thought has been given to social care.
The government’s FAQs have been updated to include current guidance and new guidance which will come into force on 4th July. See in particular the section for vulnerable groups. Again, not enough thought has been given to social care.
Staying safe outside your home
This piece of guidance has been updated to reflect recent announcements. It is likely to be updated again in July when the easements to lockdown come into force.
Provision of Home Care Guidance
The provision of home care guidance has been updated to reflect changes in hospital discharge and testing. It now states that “anyone experiencing coronavirus symptoms can now be tested, which includes individuals receiving home care. This can be accessed through the digital portal or by calling 119 to book testing.”
Review of the 2m Guidance
The government has published the review which has shaped the rationale for reducing the 2m rule to the ‘1m-plus’ from 4 July.
Relaxation of Shielding
At today’s government briefing, Matt Hancock announced a timetable to the relaxation of shielding guidance in England. These easements start on 6 July and allow those shielding to spend time outdoors in a group of up to 6 people while maintaining social distancing. From 1 August the guidance will then be relaxed so that clinically extremely vulnerable people will no longer be advised to shield, but support from NHS volunteers and local councils will remain in place.
It is now possible for small social care providers to place orders multiple times per week using the PPE Portal. However, these must remain within the limits set out on the portal guidance.
Care Friends App
Skills for Care have partnered with the employee referral app, Care Friends. The app launched on 16 June and aims to improve recruitment and retention for social care employees by using recommendations from the sector’s own workforce. According to the website:
- Interview no-shows drop to 1 in 10
- 90% of app-generated interviews are successful
- workers hired are 20% more likely to reach three months in post.
ADASS Budget Survey 2020 Part 2
The second of two ADASS Budget Survey reports has been published. This report details the impact of COVID-19 on local authority budgets, the under funding from central government and how much money has been passed on by local authorities to care providers (see page 15).
Local Outbreak Plans: Guiding Principles for Making Outbreak Management Work
A number of organisations have contributed to a document which outlines the principles for the design of COVID-19 Local Outbreak Plans. This may be of use in understanding how local management might be implemented. Annoyingly, it appears social care providers were not invited to be part of the discussion that formed this document and have been left out of the data sharing protocols.
Cyber Security Guidance
With the increased use of video-conferencing and other forms of tech during this pandemic, concerns about cyber security have been raised. Digital Social Care has updated its guidance on the topic for the benefit of social care providers.
A webinar on cyber security is also being run with security experts from O2 Business and Forescout.
Steps to take following the death of a person who worked in adult social care + Bereavement resources
DHSC has issued new guidance for local authorities and social care providers about the steps to take when someone working in the sector dies due to COVID-19. It also contains information about bereavement resources for the social care workforce.
Risk Reduction Framework
DHSC has published a framework for how adult social care employers should assess and reduce risk to their workforce during COVID-19. It covers:
- The risk assessment process
- Having conversations with workers who are identified as being at increased risk
- Measures you could put in place, both across the workforce and for individuals
- Useful guidance and resources
Priority for COVID-19 Vaccination
Interim advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) states that social care and health workers should be prioritised when a COVID-19 vaccination becomes available.
SCIE Best Practice: Care Homes and COVID-19
SCIE has created a new guidance hub which details guidance, resources and best practice advice for care homes and care staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Local Government Association
Please note a webinar on the NHS Volunteer Responders programme is taking place on Tuesday 23rd at 1pm and this will be specifically tailored for social care providers.
NHS England and the Royal Voluntary Service will be holding a webinar on the NHS Volunteer Responders programme for local authorities and social care providers on Tuesday 23rd June at 1pm. To join on the day, please click on the following link: Join Microsoft Teams Meeting (Dial in (audio only): +44 20 3855 4234; Conference ID: 590 921 567#)
DoH&SC: The Admissions to Care Homes guidance
CARE Workforce: join the new platform for the adult social care workforce
Do you work in social care in England? You can now receive the latest coronavirus information, guidance, wellbeing support and discounts direct to your smartphone or inbox.
CARE Workforce is the new Department of Health and Social Care platform, available as an app or online, designed to keep you up to date. It gives you easy access to a range of support, as well as connecting you with others working in the care sector, providing you a space to share information and experiences.
Available from the App Store, or Google Play
Supporting Risk Assessments of BAME Staff at Risk in social care
Attached, is a document produced by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the NHS in Greater Manchester. It contains guidance and a template risk assessment.
Reminder about wellbeing package for social care
This is a reminder that the government has developed an emotional, psychological and practical support package for all adult social care staff. This includes free access to several health and wellbeing apps, guidance on supporting your wellbeing, and a bereavement and trauma support helpline run by Hospice UK. The Samaritans have also launched a dedicated staff support helpline, this includes social care staff.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)
has introduced the new Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill.
The measures in this Bill will relieve the burden on businesses during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and allow them to focus all their efforts on continuing to operate.
Update CQC Tracker – Supported Living and Extra Care Service
CQC is asking supported living and extra care services to complete the “Update CQC on the impact of coronavirus online form” every weekday from today. See the attached email copy from CQC with more information about why they are doing this. This tracker was previously only completed by homecare services.
CQC publishes data on deaths in care settings broken down by ethnicity
As part of its insight reports series (see below) CQC data shows that between 10 April and 15 May 2020 when looking at care home settings, 54% of deaths amongst Black people and 49% of deaths amongst Asian people are related to COVID-19 compared to 44% of deaths of White people and 41% for mixed or multiple ethnic groups. For all care settings the figures are 49% amongst Black people and 42% amongst Asian people compared to 41% amongst White people and 41% for people from mixed or multiple ethnic groups. However, CQC is unable to give a breakdown of the overall demographics of those receiving care in all services, limiting the usefulness of their data.
Nevertheless, this is important data and needs to be taken together with the impact of COVID-19 on staff from BAME communities. Please see the information about risk assessments for staff below.
CQC Insight Report 2
CQC has issued the second of its insight reports. This one is more substantial than the first and looks at:
- How providers are working together across systems in response to coronavirus
- How the care of people from different groups is being managed (including BAME, learning disabilities, and those detained under the mental health act)
- Focus on Primary Care (specifically looking at online primary care services)
- CQC data in graphical format on the number of outbreaks in care homes, the availability of PPE for homecare services, staff absences in homecare, numbers of deaths of people in care homes and the proportion of deaths in social care services due to coronavirus by ethnic groups.
CQC statement on regulating during COVID-19
CQC has issued a statement about their regulation work which highlights the importance about raising concerns about care. The article outlines the top concerns raised from care staff about the organisations they work for.
CQC – Pandemic News stories
Carterwood Research COVID-19 care home impact by region
Disparities in the risk and outcomes of COVID-19 by Public Health England, June 2020
Impact of COVID-19 has replicated existing health inequalities and, in some cases, has increased them. Risk factors include Age and Sex, Deprivation, Ethnicity, Occupation, Inclusion health groups, People in Care Homes, Co-morbidities.
PHE Guidance – Covid-19
Personal protective equipment (PPE) – resource for care workers delivering homecare (domiciliary care) during sustained COVID-19 transmission in the UK
The Acas Podcast launches! In our first episode, Acas Chief Executive Susan Clews shares her key insights into what organisations can do to navigate coronavirus, looking at leadership, building trust, returning to work and communicating in a crisis.
New and updated guidance
Returning to the workplace – We have new guidance to help those who may be beginning to return or are now planning on returning to work in accordance with government advice. This includes guidance for how to start the discussion, what fears people might have and where they can go to get more help and advice.
Extending or ending furlough – includes links through to downloadable letters
Changing an employment contract – key considerations when varying contracts
Rights at work – a new page linking through to key areas of guidance on rights at work
Redundancy process map – outlining steps and providing links to further guidance
Mental health – tips, videos and resources
New digital training has been scheduled by our regional offices. Topics include:
- Transitioning from lockdown
- Discipline and grievance
- Employment law updates
View upcoming events in your area:
Supported Living and extra care providers
CQC have written to supported living and extra care providers to inform them that they’re rolling out the Update CQC on the impact of coronavirus online form to their services
CQC also updated their website (https://www.cqc.org.uk/guidance-providers/adult-social-care/data-collection-adult-social-care-providers-during-coronavirus
London Care Home Resource Pack
To provide clear guidance for London Care Homes aligned with NHS 111 Star lines and London COVID-19 Resource Pack for Primary Care ensuring that national guidance and good practice can be embedded locally by care providers.
Learning From the Impacts of COVID-19 on Care Homes: A Pilot Survey – from ltccovid.org
COVID-19 resource and best practice hub for social care
Hospital Visiting – updated June 5th
Cabinet Office Procurement Policy Note – Recovery and Transition from COVID-19
This Procurement Policy Note (PPN) sets out information and guidance for public bodies on payment of their suppliers to ensure service continuity during the current coronavirus, COVID-19, outbreak. It updates and builds on the provisions contained in PPN 02/20
SOCIAL CARE PROVIDERS FACE MORE THAN £6BN IN EXTRA COVID-19 COSTS
The document is designed to support local primary care and community health services as they work with partners to develop recovery/rehabilitation services for patients after they have been discharged following an acute episode of COVID-19.
Infection Control Fund Question and Answer (updated June12th)
CPA has created a briefing note containing examples to support care providers’ reports to local authorities. We are suggesting that care providers should keep reporting to Local Authorities at a high level on the basis that getting into too much detail is an overhead to both the care providers and the LA’s in such reporting. The briefing contains a limited number of different areas at a top level against which care providers can easily allocate costs, whilst also giving a series of examples to prompt providers to think about how to consider their full range of costs.
WDF statement from SfC
“As you may be aware the Department of Health and Social Care has decided to support the sector by using the Workforce Development Fund to fund rapid staff training requirements as a response to COVID-19. We’re also aware of the issues being raised by organisations and individuals around the implications of this decision. At the beginning of the crisis we were all determined to respond in the way that the whole sector needed, which was getting people recruited to and working in social care. We knew that there would be unintended consequences in terms of the Workforce Development Fund, and we have spoken about these risks with the DHSC. We still don’t know the full impact of this prioritisation of funds as a lot depends on the demand for the rapid training. We’re tracking this but don’t know yet because the new recruitment platform has only recently gone live. If demand is low, and starts to reduce, there will be more money in the WDF to continue development and skills training this year. We’re committed to reviewing this again in September, but what we do not know is how much of the fund will be remaining by then. We are modelling various options as to how much funding might be left by this date, and this will depend on how many people sign up to the new recruitment platform which has been launched, and other factors like whether there are further COVID-19 peaks. We’re capturing feedback from the sector on the impact so that we can share it with DHSC to help inform decision making. Please share any feedback you receive. We appreciate that this update won’t help the immediate situation facing many organisations but hope at the very least it gives you a definitive timescale to work to.”
Care Home Connectivity
NHSX are helping to improve connectivity in care homes. We have put together a series of internet offers and guidance to help care home managers and staff on our website.
Your feedback is really important to us. If you are a care home manager, provider, or staff member who is responsible for the internet in your care home, we’d like to hear from you. We’re conducting 45 minute sessions to test the website pages and understand your needs. This is anonymous and will help us to support care homes better. There will be a £50 thank you for your time.
If you’re interested please contact email@example.com to see if you are suitable. There are also more opportunities to get involved in ongoing work related to connectivity and devices.
If you prefer, you can provide your feedback, on a voluntary basis, via this link.
CQC publishes data on deaths of people with a learning disability
CQC have this morning (June 2nd) published data on deaths of people with a learning disability.
What does the analysis cover?
- Supported by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) we have completed a bespoke piece of analysis to better understand the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on people with a learning disability
- The analysis shows how the number of deaths during this period compares to the number of deaths last year
- The analysis looks at all deaths notified to CQC between 10 April and 15 May from providers registered with CQC who provide care to people with a learning disability and/or autism (including providers of adult social care, independent hospitals and in the community), and where the person who died was indicated to have a learning disability on the death notification form.
What does the analysis show?
- 386 people with a learning disability, some of whom may also be autistic, died who were receiving care from services which provide support for people with a learning disability and/or autism compered to 165 last year.
- Of the 386 people who have died this year, 206 were as a result of suspected and/or confirmed COVID-19 as notified by the provider and 180 were not related to COVID-19
- 184 people were receiving care from community based adult social care services and 195 from residential social care settings
- The data used has some limitations which are outlined in the news story below.
What are CQC doing going forward?
- We are undertaking a targeted piece of work to review death notifications and how we work with providers to ensure the data provided to us is both accurate and accessible.
- This includes identifying the best approach to capture the impact on autistic people as part of this reporting.
- We will publish further data and analysis on deaths of people with a learning disability on an ongoing basis as part of our insight product.
A copy of the news story with further details is available here.
CQC – Opportunity to give feedback
CQC have lots of new projects for you to get involved with on their online participation platform. They would love to hear your ideas.
COVID-19 feedback from providers
In this folder you will find the below projects to feedback on;
- Let us know about the issues impacting you right now
- Are you doing any evaluation/research on the impact of COVID-19, we would like to hear from you
- Feedback on our new insight document and let us know what you would like future editions to cover
- Feedback on our approach to regulation during COVID-19. The Emergency Support Framework and watch a recording of our Adult Social Care or General Practice webinar
A briefing paper for boards, chief execs and senior managers
employment law updates on:
- Holiday pay savings if you have furloughed staff – https://www.roydswithyking.com/covid-19-update-furlough-and-holiday-pay-savings/
- Managing health and safety concerns from staff – https://www.roydswithyking.com/covid-19-update-managing-health-and-safety-concerns/
PPE distribution using the “Clipper System”
The DoH&SC has announced that this is shortly to move out of the pilot phase and the roll-out will commence with homes of 24 beds, or less.
For DCAs, this will initially be those with 99 clients or fewer
This will not resolve all PPE issues and you still need to make sure that you raise concerns as previously.
Whole Home Testing Webinars
DHSC is running a series of webinars about whole home testing each weekday in the morning and afternoon. There is a chance to ask questions.
You can book on a session here: https://event.on24.com/wcc/r/2375949/724EF6345473A192F6B9C19334699A29/1077953
The Help Hub
The Help Hub offers free emotional support from qualified therapists. They currently have a lot of capacity for appointments which can be booked on their website: https://www.thehelphub.co.uk/. Please circulate this to your staff.
Apply for a coronavirus Bounce Back Loan
The Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) enables smaller businesses to access finance more quickly during the coronavirus outbreak.
Poems in a Pandemic; A poetry and art competition for frontline social care and support staff
What a great idea to use your creativity and imagination
Government launches NHS Test and Trace service
- NHS Test and Trace service to form a central part of the government’s coronavirus recovery strategy
- Anyone with symptoms will be tested and their close contacts will be traced
- New guidance means those who have been in close contact with someone who tests positive must isolate for 14 days, even if they have no symptoms, to avoid unknowingly spreading the virus
The new NHS Test and Trace service will launch tomorrow (Thursday 28 May) across England, the government announced.
The service will help identify, contain and control coronavirus, reduce the spread of the virus and save lives.
From tomorrow, anyone who tests positive for coronavirus will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and will need to share information about their recent interactions. This could include household members, people with whom they have been in direct contact, or within 2 metres for more than 15 minutes.
People identified as having been in close contact with someone who has a positive test must stay at home for 14 days, even if they do not have symptoms, to stop unknowingly spreading the virus.
If those in isolation develop symptoms, they can book a test at nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119. If they test positive, they must continue to stay at home for 7 days or until their symptoms have passed. If they test negative, they must complete the 14-day isolation period.
Members of their household will not have to stay at home unless the person identified becomes symptomatic, at which point they must also self-isolate for 14 days to avoid unknowingly spreading the virus.
Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said:
“As we move to the next stage of our fight against coronavirus, we will be able to replace national lockdowns with individual isolation and, if necessary, local action where there are outbreaks.
“NHS Test and Trace will be vital to stopping the spread of the virus. It is how we will be able to protect our friends and family from infection, and protect our NHS.
“This new system will help us keep this virus under control while carefully and safely lifting the lockdown nationally.”
NHS Test and Trace brings together four tools to control the virus.
- Test: increasing availability and speed of testing will underpin NHS Test and Trace.
- Trace: when someone tests positive for coronavirus the NHS Test and Trace service will use dedicated contact tracing staff, online services and local public health experts to identify any close recent contacts they’ve had and alert those most at risk of having the virus who need to self-isolate. This will be complemented by the rollout of the NHS Covid-19 App in the coming weeks.
- Contain: A national Joint Biosecurity Centre will work with local authorities and public health teams in PHE, including local Directors of Public Health, to identify localised outbreaks and support effective local responses, including plans to quickly deploy testing facilities to particular locations. Local authorities have been supported by £300m of new funding to help local authorities develop their own local outbreak control plans.
- Enable: Government to learn more about the virus, including as the science develops, to explore how we could go further in easing infection control measures.
The NHS Test and Trace service, including 25,000 dedicated contact tracing staff working with Public Health England, will have the capacity to trace the contacts of 10,000 people who test positive for coronavirus per day and can be scaled up if needed.
The rollout of the NHS Test and Trace service has been made possible by the rapid expansion of testing. The largest network of diagnostic testing facilities in British history has been created and will soon have the capacity to carry out 200,000 tests a day. This includes 50 drive-through sites, more than 100 mobile testing units and 3 mega laboratories.
People who are contacted by the NHS Test and Trace service will be given clear information explaining what they must do and how they can access local support if needed. Guidance is also available online at gov.uk/coronavirus. This comes as the Department for Work and Pensions has announced that those having to self-isolate will be eligible for statutory sick pay if they are unable to work from home. This applies across the four nations of the UK.
Dido Harding, Executive Chair of NHS Test and Trace, said:
“This is a brand new service which has been launched at incredible speed and scale. NHS Test and Trace already employs over 40,000 people, both directly and through trusted partners, who are working hard to deliver both testing and contact tracing at scale. This is no small achievement and I am hugely grateful to everyone involved.
“NHS Test and Trace will not succeed on its own – we all need to play our part. This is why we are working hand-in-hand with communities and local authorities across the country to tailor support at a local level, and respond quickly to local needs. And we will be constantly developing and improving as we go. Together we can help contain the virus, stop it spreading further and ultimately save lives.”
The government has also today expanded testing availability for children aged under 5, to help support the phased opening of schools and childcare settings in England from 1 June. From tomorrow, all symptomatic individuals in England will be able to access a test if they need one, with all symptomatic individuals in Wales able to book tests from Saturday.
Anyone with a new, continuous cough, a high temperature or a change in their sense of smell or taste is asked to immediately report these symptoms and book a test at nhs.uk/coronavirus.
A package of £300 million of new funding has been made available to local authorities to work with NHS Test and Trace to develop local outbreak control plans, building on the work already done so far to respond to coronavirus. Their plans will focus on identifying and containing potential outbreaks in places such as workplaces, housing complexes, care homes and schools, ensuring testing capacity is deployed effectively and helping the most vulnerable in self-isolation access essential services in their area. A new Local Government Advisory Board has also been established to support this work.
Professor John Newton, National Coordinator of Test and Trace, said:
“At this critical point in the nation’s response to coronavirus we are launching a service that will enable us to emerge more safely from lockdown. To control the virus we still need to continue with social distancing and good hygiene, but we also now have a comprehensive test and trace service to stop new cases spreading. This approach will allow us to gradually return to more normal personal, social and economic lives while recognising that we have to stay alert and respond rapidly to any advice from the new service.
Work continues on the NHS COVID-19 app following a successful rollout on the Isle of Wight. There has been a positive reception to the test and trace system on the island with over 52,000 downloads in the first week.
The app, which will form a part of the NHS Test and Trace service, is due to be launched in the coming weeks once contact tracing is up and running. It will significantly extend the speed and reach of contact tracing, by helping to identify those who you may not know, such as someone sitting next to you on public transport. The app will also give powerful insights into the spread of the virus and how to contain it.
Care Home Support Planning
Local Authorities have been asked to draw up Care Home support plans. Below, is a very detailed FAQ explaining this plus additional information about what commissioners in general need to do and what is being asked of care providers. This covers all residential and nursing beds.
Claim back Statutory Sick Pay paid to your employees due to coronavirus (COVID-19)
DoH&SC Guidance for the Home Care Sector
Today (May 26th) guidance for the home care sector has been published for registered providers, social care staff, local authorities and commissioners who support and deliver care to people in their own homes, including supported living settings, in England.
A link to this guidance can be found here : https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-providing-home-care/coronavirus-covid-19-provision-of-home-care.
New tool launched to speed up social care recruitment
- Join Social Care will accelerate the recruitment process for adult social care
- People looking to work in care can upload an online profile to be viewed by CQC registered care providers in their local area
- Online training and DBS checks available free of charge
A new online platform to fast-track recruitment into the adult social care sector has been launched the government has announced today.
Join Social Care is a recruitment platform that makes it easier for care providers to reach people in their local areas looking to work in the sector.
The online platform, developed and licensed from Cera Care, allows candidates to record a video interview and access free training supported by Skills for Care before starting employment.
Registered providers are then able to search for candidates in their local area, view their video interviews before starting DBS checks and training processes and make conditional offers making recruitment more streamlined during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.
- To view the full website visit www.joinsocialcare.co.uk
- This platform can be used alongside other applications or initiatives available in local areas.
- To gain access to the site providers will need to register with their CQC contact email address for the location. All registered providers are able to sign up now at www.joinsocialcare.co.uk/care-company
PPE – Homecare
The new guidance covers:
- Links to PPE guidance
- Shielding and care groups
- Hospital discharge and testing
- Government support for social care
- Information collection and governance
Please also see the letter attached from the Director-General of DHSC.
PPE – FFP3 mask shortages
DHSC appreciate there are challenges in sourcing PPE, including FFP3 masks. FPP3s have been provided to Local Resilience Forums (LRFs) to help respond to need amongst eligible service providers, if they are performing aerosol generating procedures (AGPs) and they are unable to access stock through their business as usual routes.
Providers who have an urgent requirement for PPE, which they have been unable to secure through their business as usual channels or their LRF, should continue to raise this issue through the National Supply Disruption Response (NSDR). DETAILS BELOW
The NSDR does have a stock of FFP3s available.
Accordingly, we would recommend logging your request with NSDR again if you they still have not managed to source through other channels, as it is possible that a particular model of FFP3 mask was out of stock at the time of the original request.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): antibody tests
The government has announced the start of a major new national antibody testing programme, with plans to provide antibody tests to NHS and care staff in England from the end of May.
Clinicians will also be able to request the tests for patients in both hospital and social care settings if they think it’s appropriate.
The UK government is buying tests on behalf of the devolved administrations, and each devolved nation is deciding how to use its test allocation.
Recruiting during the COVID-19 pandemic: sharing local recruitment solutions
Skills for Care, the Care Provider Alliance, the Local Government Association and ADASS, are working together to gather creative solutions or initiatives from employers and individual employers in their local areas that have resulted in the recruitment of:
- people returning to work in social care
- students in their final year of study who are starting their career in social care early
- people coming from other sectors.
The information gathered will be shared with the sector to support other providers in finding a solution to their own recruitment challenges. Full details can be found here.
legal risks of Covid-19
This artcle was recently penned by Mei-Ling Huang, Partner at Royds, Withy King
|T: 01225 730100|
CPA Briefing for care homes
CPA Briefing note for care providers; COVID-19: Insurance, risks and possible liabilities
CQC Emergency Support Framework
Although we paused our routine inspections, our regulatory role and core purpose of keeping people safe has not changed – safety is still our priority. We have therefore developed an emergency support framework that we will follow during the pandemic.
Our interim approach has a number of elements:
- using and sharing information to target support where it’s needed most
- having open and honest conversations
- taking action to keep people safe and to protect people’s human rights
- capturing and sharing what we do.
We will use this emergency approach in all health and social care settings registered with CQC during the pandemic, and for a period afterwards.
Our emergency support framework is not an inspection, and we are not rating your performance.
NHS Providers response to care provider concerns about hospital discharges
Below is the NHS Providers response to care provider concerns about dicharges from hospitals to social care organisations. It appears to have no input from social care providers and state that the NHS acted correctly. If you have examples of discharge that concern you, or involved taking patients / clients untested for Covid-19, or that had tested positve and you were not made aware of this before transfer, please let us know. Comments (can be anonymised) will be grouped through the Care Association Alliance.
Guidance (Updated May 19th)
Coronavirus (COVID-19): support for care homes
Sets out the support package to keep care homes safe during the coronavirus pandemic.
FCA Guidance:Coronavirus and customers in temporary financial difficulty: draft guidance
for insurance and premium finance firms
NHS: Clinical guide for supporting compassionate visiting arrangements for those receiving care at the end of life
NHS: Operating framework for urgent and planned services in hospital settings during COVID-19
SCIE: Safeguarding in faith-based organisations during the COVID-19 crisis
Guidance around free-of-charge applications and our new fast-track Barred List check service, in response to COVID-19.
The Care Homes Support Package
The Care Home Support Package (referred to as Annex A in the Minister’s letter) contains the following:
- Infection prevention and control and PPE: Particularly, training in infection control by CCG infection control nurses, a restatement of the efforts being undertaken to source PPE for LRFs and the establishment of the Clipper system, a statement that workforce movement between care homes should be minimised as far as possible, local authorities are being asked to ensure there are quarantining facilities which can be used before returning a resident to a care home if needed. SAGE have established a sub-group to look at care homes.
- Stepping up NHS Clinical Support – including timely access to named clinical contacts, proactive support for people living in care homes, support for care home residents with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 from multi-disciplinary teams where possible and sensitive and collaborative decisions around hospital admissions.
- A commitment to comprehensive testing for all residents and staff – it repeats much of the information I shared with you yesterday.
- A commitment to oversight and compliance – all local authorities are being asked to review or put in place a care home support plan, informed by the views of care providers. These need to be submitted by 29 May to DHSC/MHCLG.
- A commitment to expanding the workforce by 20,000 people in the next three months. This section mentions the new care campaign, CARE badge and app, as well as measures to fast track DBS.
- Funding – it reiterates that the £600m is in addition to previous tranches of money given to Local Authorities for social care among other areas. ADASS is currently surveying its members to understand whether the £3.2bn has actually been passed to social care providers – this needs to be completed by 15th May. Local Authorities are being directed to publish on their websites their rate uplifts and other extra funding they may have given to care providers – deadline for this is 29 May. This section also states that £1.3bn was also given to the NHS to support safe and timely discharge from hospitals into care.
- There is an Annex which describes in further detail ‘restricting workforce movement and minimising workforce transmission’
Dementia in care homes and COVID-19. Supporting residents, supporting carers, supporting homes
Testing Update – May 19th 2020
From the 14th update
Update from the D o H & S C.
This week there have been a number of key COVID-19 announcements relating to adult social care that I would like to share with you. Please see below:
Whole care homes testing
DHSC’s Director General for Social Care, Ros Roughton has written to the sector about the roll-out of whole care home testing. This letter is below, and outlines the processes around testing in care homes, including DHSC’s portal for ordering COVID-19 home testing kits.
Technical Specifications for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
The documents attached within the link below define the technical and regulatory standards for Personal Protective Equipment
Coronavirus (COVID-19): getting tested
Guidance on coronavirus testing, including who is eligible for a test and how to get tested.
There is further testing information further down this page.
Social Works – John Buttle – http://www.socialworksltd.co.uk/
Laura Anthony Skills for Care – https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Home.aspx
Rosie Figgess Citation – https://www.citation.co.uk/
Walking, cycling, and travelling in vehicles or on public transport during the coronavirus outbreak.
The Wellbeing of Staff at Work
An additional piece of guidance has just been published for anyone who works in adult social care. It provides advice on how you can manage your personal mental health in the current circumstances. It also provides adult social care employers with guidance, tools and advice on how to take care of the wellbeing of staff at work.
You can find a link to this guidance here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-health-and-wellbeing-of-the-adult-social-care-workforce/health-and-wellbeing-of-the-adult-social-care-workforce
ONS data on COVID-19 and different occupational groups
ONS released some stark data on May the 11th, which shows that 131 social care workers have died due to COVID-19. This means that deaths per 100,000 involving COVID-19 amongst care workers is higher than those amongst healthcare workers.
You may have seen this on the BBC – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-52616080
We understand that providers face challenges around the cost of PPE during a time of high demand. We encourage providers with concerns around markup of PPE costs to report this through the Competition and Markets Authority at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tell-the-cma-about-a-competition-or-market-problem
If you are having PPE supply / quality issues, LCAS is able to access the national PPE Task & Finish Group – Adult Social Care. Let me have details of issues and I will forward them on your behalf and report back. firstname.lastname@example.org 01932 355598 / 07956 878901
During the recent PPE T&F, members were asked to send through information they may have on the issues listed below.
- In cases where providers have been sent to LRFs by the National Supply Disruption Response (NSDR) and not been able to receive stock please encourage providers to inform NSDR by replying to the email they will have received from CPC. NSDR will then look into whether they can send the provider emergency supplies. If CPC do not hear further from providers they will assume that the LRF has been able to provide stock and the case will be closed after 5 days.
- If members are aware of instances where providers are unhappy with the service they have received from NSDR and wish to escalate this, please send details, including case references and names of organisations where possible,
- If members are aware of instances where PPE supplies have been diverted inappropriately, please send details to
- If members are aware of wholesalers distributing damaged or poor quality products, we suggest they first challenge the wholesaler. If this is unsuccessful, they can escalate by sending the details to us.
New: Infection control e-learning and resources
A new dedicated app for the adult social care workforce in England has been launched to support staff through the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The app will be available to download from on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, as well as being accessible online at https://workforce.adultsocialcare.uk
A video on the app is available to download here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AQg0Vcuhwza-sPj6V1fHBTurBVk3mLJX/view?usp=sharing
Within the Croydon ASB website, is a page specifically for Covid information. https://www.croydonsab.co.uk/coronavirus-uk-covid-19/
COMPENDIUM OF GUIDANCE ON WORKFORCE ISSUES FOR COMMUNITY SERVICES, CARE HOME AND DOMICILIARY
CARE PROVIDERS AND STAFF
This document pulls together in one place some of the latest key guidance issued to employers and staff in response to the COVID-19 incident
LCAS RM Meeting May 12th 2020
LCAS are inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
May 12, 2020 10:00 AM
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 962 8989 0870
The meeting will include how to access good, worthwhile on-line training with John Buttle from Social Works and updates from Citation on HR and Skills for Care on the wide range of support they have for the sector. It is also an opportunity for you to raise issues and link with other managers.
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Dial by your location
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Meeting ID: 962 8989 0870
Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/abzfGzKgRD
RIDDOR reporting of COVID-19
CQC are hosting a series of webinars on the emergency support framework (ESF), book early to ensure a place
Atypical Covid-19 presentations in older people – the need for continued vigilance
A very useful resource
Covid-19: help us investigate
CQC emergency support framework
From 04/05/20, CQC is launching its emergency support framework for care providers. They will be implementing calls to care service managers. They will gather information from you. They will not publish this information but it could lead to requests for you to provide information or an inspection where they feel it is necessary. They emphasise their supportive role during the crisis.
Letter from Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government
to Local Authorities with regard to the £3.2bn of Covid-19 support funding that they’ve received
Update on GOV.UK.
From 1 May 2020, PPE purchased by care homes, businesses, charities and individuals to protect against Covid-19 will be free from VAT for a three-month period.
FNC Rates 2020 / 2021
This will be of interest to those of you with nursing services.
The FNC rate was being independently reviewed in 2019 by Laing and Buisson and DoH have now concluded the review. They have increased the 2019/20 FNC rate (last year) from £165.56 to £180.31, and stated that the increase will be backdated to the 1st April 2019. They have also announced the rate for 2020/21 at £183.92.
Further information on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
DHSC has directed people to the Social Care Action Plan section on page 17 which includes most of the detail outlined relating to Statutory Sick Pay etc.
The explainer on furloughing staff in the social care sector is here
Useful sources of Coronavirus / Covid-19 related information
CQC has a dedicated section to COVID-19 related changes on their website.
SCIE has created a hub for COVID-19 advice for social care.
regularly to make sure that you are keeping your organisational brief updated.
Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) standard operating procedure
Running a medicines re-use scheme in a care home or hospice setting
Essential Worker Covid-19 Testing Guidance
This is an update from the DoH&SC to information issued on Wednesday 29 April 2020 on COVID-19 testing in care homes.
Testing arrangements for care workers and care home residents with COVID-19 symptoms are set out below.
Testing for care workers with COVID-19 symptoms
Care workers can be swabbed at regional or mobile testing centres, or by using home testing kits. Workers can self-refer through the online portal or be referred by their employer. Users enter their details and will then receive a text or email the same day, inviting them to either book an appointment at a regional testing site, or receive a home testing kit. Test results are usually available via text message within 48 – 72 hours.
The first time a care home suspects that one of its residents has COVID-19 symptoms
When a care home manager suspects for the first time, that the care home has COVID-19 symptoms in a resident or residents, the care home manager should contact their local Public Health England Health Protection Team (HPT). The HPT will arrange for the testing of all symptomatic residents at this point as well as providing locally tailored infection control advice.
Subsequent testing for care home residents with or without COVID-19 symptoms
We are working to roll out further testing, covering all care home staff and residents, with or without COVID-19 symptoms. More information will be provided when this service is available.
Further expansion of access to coronavirus testing helps protect the most vulnerable
- Everyone in England aged 65 and over with coronavirus symptoms can now get tested, along with symptomatic members of their households
- Symptomatic workers who are unable to work from home also eligible for testing
- Testing of all asymptomatic NHS and social care staff and care home residents also being rolled out
- New expansion of testing made possible due to rapidly increasing testing capacity
Anyone in England with symptoms of coronavirus who has to leave home to go to work, and all symptomatic members of the public aged 65 and over, will now be able to get tested, the government has announced today.
This will mean people who cannot work from home and those aged 65 and over can know for sure whether they have coronavirus and need to continue isolating.
Members of their households with symptoms – a new continuous cough or high temperature – will also be eligible for testing.
Anyone eligible can book a test using an online portal.
UBER Benefits for social care staff
Care Providers (&NHS) are able to benefit from a 25% discount on their staff’s trips for 12 weeks.
Skills for Care Registered Manager Advice Line
Skills for Care has set-up a new advice phone line and e-mail inbox to support those managing CQC regulated adult social care services through the COVID-19 crisis. The advice line is open to all COVID-19 related questions from registered managers, service managers, deputy managers and nominated individuals. To get in touch with us please call (0113) 2411260 or e-mail RMAdvice@skillsforcare.org.uk. Further information can be found at: https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Leadership-management/support-for-registered-managers/Advice-line.aspx
New guarantee on death in service benefits for frontline health and care staff during
A quick-read summary of the MCA and DoLS Guidance. Here is a link.
This is the guidance from CQC
We are aware of reports that providers are being asked to complete several capacity trackers, hopefully this information is helpful.
Guidance on PPE for the Social Care Sector
How to contact the LRF if you are short of PPE supplies
The Govt. are working with E-bay on a route to supply PPE, this is being piloted at present, it is due to be rolled out in May.
Updated compilation of guidance
It is still useful to keep emailing the Local Government PPE email with shortage updates: PPE@local.gov.uk
This link may be of use:
Personal protective equipment (PPE) –resource for care workers delivering homecare (domiciliary care) during sustained COVID-19 transmission in the UK
NMC – Nursing & Midwifery Council
Those of you who may need this information, probably have it directly, just in case
Coronavirus (Covid-19): Information and advice
Skills for Care: Free job site listings for adult social care organisations
The National Recruitment Campaign for adult social care (Care for others. Make a difference) relaunched last week – it will be targeting people who have lost their jobs as a result of the pandemic.
As part of the campaign a number of national job sites are offering free listings to adult social care organisations:
- Monster – 30 days free jobs listings until 31st May. Visit: https://www.monster.co.uk/advertise-a-job/hr-resources/market-news/adult-social-care-jobs/ and follow the instructions on the page
- Reed – free job listings until the 20th May. Call 0845 2419293
- Indeed – if you’re an existing client speak to your Account Manager and quote reference DHSC-COVID-19-MATCH. New customers please e-mail email@example.com and quote the same reference
Jobseekers are being asked to search ‘adult social care jobs’ and will be signposted to the sites above – it may be worth posting vacancies as soon as you’re able to in order to take advantage of the increased interest generated by the campaign.
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This is our latest bulletin on the CJRS: https://www.roydswithyking.com/job-retention-scheme-essential-update-for-care-providers/
Local Authority Grants from Government for Covid-19 payments
Below is the detail of what each local authority received from the original £1.6bn distributed by the governemnt some weeks ago. A further £1.6bn was added to this last week.
What is your local authority doing to support you and your organisation?
How the funds are to be used
Updates from CQC
Sign this Petition, please get colleagues and friends to sign too
We would like the government to consider social care as equally important to NHS
You must only make a report under RIDDOR (The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013) when:
- an unintended incident at work has led to someone’s possible or actual exposure to coronavirus. This must be reported as a dangerous occurrence.
- a worker has been diagnosed as having COVID 19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work. This must be reported as a case of disease.
- a worker dies as a result of occupational exposure to coronavirus.
Considerations for Personal Protective Equipment in the Context of Acute Supply Shortages for Coronavirus Disease 2019
SCIE Coronavirus: Learning Disability and Autism guidance
Guidance for those working in care homes providing information on how to work safely during this period of sustained transmission of COVID-19.
Everylife Technologies have introduced
a free service, launched today for care providers called C19 CONTROL, this is to help carers and care providers record and report COVID-19 status and PPE use at the frontline of care. This has been designed to assist care providers to manage the operating challenges Covid-19 brings and help them have the data to hand to easily report to the CQC etc as required. As they get feedback from users they will continue to refine and improve this service.
The Government has extended the Job Retention Scheme to the end of June.
CQC data requirements
- Residential and nursing homes to complete only the NHS Capacity Tracker as set out in Coronavirus (COVID-19): admission and care of people in care homes
- Homecare providers to complete CQC’s ‘Update CQC on the impact of Covid’ online form (from Monday 13 April). This will be rolled out to Shared Lives services, Extra Care and Supporting Living services soon and we will be in contact with them directly when the service is available to them
The small number of providers of both homecare and residential and/or nursing homes to complete both data collections
How the government will support the adult social care sector in England throughout the coronavirus outbreak.
Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, Kate Terroni, sets out our next steps to support adult social care during the COVID-19 pandemic
Information for the social care sector on responding to the coronavirus pandemic.
Exercise for People with learning disabilities and/or autism
The government has updated its guidance to state that people with learning disabilities and/or autism are allowed to exercise more than once a day:
“You can leave your home for medical need. If you (or a person in your care) have a specific health condition that requires you to leave the home to maintain your health – including if that involves travel beyond your local area – then you can do so. This could, for example, include where individuals with learning disabilities or autism require specific exercise in an open space two or three times each day – ideally in line with a care plan agreed with a medical professional.
Even in such cases, in order to reduce the spread of infection and protect those exercising, travel outside of the home should be limited, as close to your local area as possible, and you should remain at least 2 metres apart from anyone who is not a member of your household or a carer at all times.”
CQC Guidance on DBS & other employment checks
CQC updated form for notification of the death of a person with Covid-19
MCA and DoLs COVID 19 guidance
New immigration system guidance
Here is the new guidance on the proposed new immigration system: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-immigration-system-what-you-need-to-know#lower-skilled-workers
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look helpful for social care.
The points-based system will include a route for skilled workers who have a job offer from an approved employer sponsor.
From January 2021, the job you’re offered will need to be at a required skill level of RQF3 or above (equivalent to A level). You’ll also need to be able to speak English. The minimum general salary threshold will be reduced to £25,600.
If you will earn less than this – but no less than £20,480 – you may still be able to apply by ‘trading’ points on specific characteristics against your salary. For example, if you have a job offer in a shortage occupation or have a PhD relevant to the job.
Details of how the points system will work are in the policy statement.
If you’re an employer planning to sponsor skilled migrants from 2021, and are not currently an approved sponsor, you should consider getting approved now.
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Activities for Older Adults During COVID19-A guide to online resources for those providing care for people with dementia
Find out about the information we have on our registers and how NHS staff and local authorities in England and Wales can ask us for it
Advice for furloughing company directors.
Firstly, there has been further advice provided with regard to furloughing and in particular the furloughing of company directors. Please see the HMRC guidance below:
As office holders, salaried company directors are eligible to be furloughed and receive support through this scheme. Company directors owe duties to their company which are set out in the Companies Act 2006. Where a company (acting through its board of directors) considers that it is in compliance with the statutory duties of one or more of its individual salaried directors, the board can decide that such directors should be furloughed. Where one or more individual directors’ furlough is so decided by the board, this should be formally adopted as a decision of the company, noted in the company records and communicated in writing to the director(s) concerned.
Where furloughed directors need to carry out particular duties to fulfil the statutory obligations they owe to their company, they may do so provided they do no more than would reasonably be judged necessary for that purpose, for instance, they should not do work of a kind they would carry out in normal circumstances to generate commercial revenue or provides services to or on behalf of their company.
This also applies to salaried individuals who are directors of their own personal service company (PSC).”
In short, our understanding is, as a director, you are able to carry out statutory duties such as signing accounts, sending paperwork, making decisions on PAYE etc but cannot undertake work for, or on behalf of your company. It is it up to you, or your advisors to decide whether you believe this is the case for you. The information required from you (and for any employees that may be furloughed) is as follows:
- EPAYE Reference number (I believe we will have this)
- The number of employees being furloughed and who they are
- The number of directors being furloughed
- The claim period (Start and End date, bearing in mind this scheme is temporary and is currently in place for 3 months from 1st March 2020)
- Amount to be claimed
- Your bank account number and sort code
- Your contact name
- Your phone number
Information for those employing registered nurses, short survey by the
Impact of COVID-19 on the Nursing and Midwifery workforce study (ICON) study
Thank you for your interest in the Impact of COVID-19 on the Nursing and Midwifery workforce study (ICON) study. The survey takes about 15-minutes to complete.The following information gives more information about the study to help you decide if you wish to take part.
To participate, you must be a registered nurse, registered midwife, healthcare assistant, nursing associate, trainee nursing associate or student nurse working in the UK.
Please take the time to complete this, it will be useful for them to have as much social care input as possible.
Government launches Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp
New guidance issued for employers: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme?utm_source=22073d98-c3f4-47e3-b012-3fa9f1a81e4e&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate#payroll-consolidation
Importantly this has now removed the redundancy requirement to furlough shielding employees, which was included in the earlier version. Read as a whole the guidance as therefore moved some way away from there needing to be a redundancy/lay off situation to furlough and claim under the Scheme (subject to any further guidance / legislation!).
The other potential issue for providers is the restriction for those with public funding for staff costs. This hasn’t changed in the guidance.(Update April 13th)
Update April 9th
More clarification is still required from the Government in relation to the eligibility of social care businesses for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), explains our Health & Social Care team.
The Government has provided more guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, but some key questions remain unanswered, including:
• Are health and social care providers in receipt of public funding eligible?
• Is redundancy/lay off a pre-condition of furlough?
• Can shielding employees be furloughed?
Here are links to the new Job Retention Scheme guidance released on Saturday.
It confirms that:
Furloughed workers can work for other companies (not their employer or group companies) while furloughed and still get 80% of pay from their primary employer (subject to employment contract terms). Big opportunity for social care to get some temporary staff to manage Covid19 and who hopefully want to stay in the sector longer term.
It answers some other questions but:
- No more detail on extent to which publicly funded providers are eligible under the Scheme
- Still unclear whether there needs to a strict redundancy/layoff situation. The general guidance seems to relax this requirement:
If you cannot maintain your current workforce because your operations have been severely affected by coronavirus (COVID-19), you can furlough employees and apply for a grant that covers 80% of their usual monthly wage costs, up to £2,500 a month, plus the associated Employer National Insurance contributions and minimum automatic enrolment employer pension contributions on that wage.
This is a temporary scheme in place for 3 months starting from 1 March 2020, but it may be extended if necessary and employers can use this scheme anytime during this period. It is designed to help employers whose operations have been severely affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) to retain their employees and protect the UK economy. However, all employers are eligible to claim under the scheme and the government recognises different businesses will face different impacts from coronavirus.
But bizarrely it then says this for shielding employees:
You can claim for furloughed employees who are shielding in line with public health guidance (or need to stay home with someone who is shielding) if they are unable to work from home and you would otherwise have to make them redundant.
There is still going to be uncertainty until we get the legislation/full guidance.
Our client update will follow.
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Integration & Better Care Fund
COVID-19: admission and care of people in care homes guidance webinar
Join this interactive webinar to support the implementation of the Admission and care of residents during COVID-19 incident in a care home guidance. The webinar will consist of an overview of the guidance through short presentations, followed by opportunities for Q&A.
The webinars will be the same content run over four different sessions with the opportunity to ask questions and hear responses and we strongly encourage every system to have some representation in at least one of the sessions.
Who is this for?
The webinars will be of interest to all registered care home managers and deputies, local authorities, CCGs, community service providers and those working in hospital discharge settings.
HSE – RIDDOR reporting of COVID-19
The Health and Safety Executive have updated their guidance on RIDDOR reporting during COVID-19.
The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) are carrying out new research on the impact of Covid-19 on health and care. This research focuses on how frontline staff have been impacted, and what support they need from government. This includes issues around PPE, priority testing, mental health, and financial support. They are also interested in how the providers have been impacted, and what risks they anticipate in the future. To support this, they have opened a consultation – to hear thoughts from providers, professionals and service providers. It should take around five minutes to complete, and is available here:
CQC FAQ Delegating medicines administration. (April 2nd)
Court of Protection
Here is a blog that discusses the updated Guidance from the Court of Protection. They still seem to be functioning.
Webinar – coronavirus and care home settings – a free training resource for staff working in London Developed and provided by PHE London
PHE London are currently receiving many enquiries about coronavirus from care home settings. A webinar has been developed to provide some basic training for care home staff and will be available from PHE London between 1st and 3rd of April 2020.
How does it work?
• webinars are provided over Skype
• each webinar will cover the same content
• the webinar will last around 45 minutes including time for questions and answers
• if you cannot get Skype to work then you can dial in by phone and follow the slides
• two webinars are scheduled to take place, one on 1st April and one on 3rd April
What do I need to do?
• select the webinar you wish to attend and register at the links below
• each delegate must register to attend the webinar individually however one person can register for a workplace and the webinar can be viewed with colleagues
• instructions on how to join the webinar will be sent up to one hour before the webinar
• please ensure you have time in your diary to set up Skype/dial in beforehand
• where possible, please try to use the Skype connection as then you can see the trainer, view the slides and interact with the webinar
If you would like to contact the webinar team, please email: ImmsTraining@phe.gov.uk
PLEASE NOTE THIS EMAIL IS NOT FOR CLINICAL QUERIES
Coronavirus and care home settings – webinars
Date 01/04/2020 / 03/04/2020
Start time 11am
Link to register
COVID-19: infection prevention and control (updated April 2nd)
17 documents in all.
Interim guidance on DBS and other recruitment checks from CQC
We have issued interim guidance in response to temporary changes being made by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to DBS applications and processes. It will be in operation for the period the Coronavirus Act 2020 remains in force, and we will review it on a regular basis.
You can find the interim guidance in full on our website
COVID-19 prioritisation within community health services
Updated Version April 2nd 2020
Interesting & useful NHS information film on Coronavirus
SfC training updates for the Covid-19 situation
Changes to Mandatory Training
Care Certificate Sel-Assessment Tool
Guidance for care of the deceased with suspected or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19)
15% of daily testing capacity has been made available for testing staff within the NHS. The aim is to test staff with family members who have been asked to self-isolate who do not have symptoms themselves.
First call on the testing is for those in critical care and A&E followed by Ambulance and Primary Care staff. As the capacity grows it will also be made available for social care staff.
If you have any services which are at risk due to this type of absenteeism (ie not ill themselves, but having to self-isolate), please speak to your local CCG to see if there is any local capacity.
We are advised that these suppliers have stocks. Other suppliers may also be available.
03300 552 288 firstname.lastname@example.org *
01756 706 050 email@example.com
01226 719 090 firstname.lastname@example.org
DHSC update on plans to support access to PPE
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has written to health and care sector providers to update on plans to support access to personal protective equipment (PPE) during the current response to COVID-19.
This includes the development of a Parallel Supply Chain to support the normal supply chain with a focus on delivering core PPE products for COVID-19. DHSC has also mobilised the National Supply Disruption Response (NSDR), which can be contacted in the event that providers have an urgent requirement for PPE, which they are unable to secure through their business as usual channels.
There will be social care providers with staff who have used, or may start to need to use food banks. Food banks are struggling at present for several reasons;
Lack of donations, as more people use delivery services, and people hanging on to their supplies
Many food bank volunteers are older, so staying at home, so no-one to assemble and distribute
Some food banks have closed as they cannot manage the increased number of customers, combining with others that may be farther away from clients, who can’t access new location as they don’t have transport and bus services have been cut
Those of your staff who have been using / are using food banks may need more support to enable them to stay well and working.
The Trussell Trust is a major food bank organisation, there are many others some small and local.
Hospital Discharge Form
Examples from Wiltshire
Updated Infection prevention & Control Guidance
April 6 Employment Law Changes – The Good Work Plan
Though coronavirus is currently dominating the headlines, there are major employment law changes that have to be legally implemented by 6 April 2020.
Known as The Good Work Plan, these are designed to give greater protection to those working under more flexible work arrangements. They will impact every single business in the UK, for example, through changes to holiday pay calculations and the increased protection of agency workers.
To help you better understand the changes, here are two free guides that the HR & Employment Law experts of Citation, have constructed:
- Your complete free guide to employment rights – a quick and easy reminder of what employees, workers and the self-employed are legally entitled to from employers.
- Your guide to defining employment status questions – 10 key questions you can ask yourself to start getting to grips with employment status in your business.
Not heard of The Good Work Plan or want a refresh of the changes due to come into effect? Click below to read an overview.
Got any questions about how you’ll be affected?
Call 0345 844 111 to speak to a friendly advisor, or click here to make an enquiry. If you are a member of a trade association, just let them know which when inquiring.
Letter to all in social care from Matt Hancock
A useful round-up of current CORONAVIRUS / COVID-19 information is available at
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme & Furloughed Worker information (updated 27th March)
Here is the latest guidance published last night for ease of reference. Answers some but not all questions.
A petition supporting social care for you to sign and pass on
A legal view by blog on the Coronavirus Bill.
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The Blue Light Card
A recognisable and acceptable form of ID for social care staff who may be finding get their roles across difficult
The latest version of the NHS Hospital Discharge Documentation.
The latest version of COVID-19 prioritisation within community health services (March 25th)
CQC Update (March 25th)
If you do not get the updates direct from CQC, sign up now.
Working with volunteers
There a handbook: https://www.ncvo.org.uk/images/documents/practical_support/volunteering/Volunteering_in_care_homes/Sharing_time_and_talents_-_building_caring_communities-webversion.pdf and also the attached presentation.
SfC & the DoH&SC are working to produce new guidelines and these will be added when available.
British Geriatric Society
A number of useful items here
Advice from The British Dietetic Associations Older People’s Specialist Group
who have published a recommendations for action by dietetic services for older and vulnerable people living in their own home
Make sure that you have this in place in your organisation.
Really useful link below for registering vulnerable people needing shopping, medication collecting.
Make Good PR
Get every relative, staff member, point of public engagement, to produce positive moments sharing positive care comments on social media…..right now Granny and Grandads are a big focus and we need it all to be positive for us and them. Social Care needs to keep morale up amongst staff and volunteers and all that helps them feel valued and appreciated. We have many tough weeks ahead.
Use this situation to build links across the community, we have social care providers making virtual pen-pals for their clients with others young and old.
Use your social media, Twitter, Whatsapp, Facebook and others to spread positive messages about your service, the clients you care for and the hard-working staff doing a great job
Updated weblink for PPE advice & guidance (23/03/2020)
Discharge to Assess Guidance below,
which may be of use in your workings.
Corvid-19 / Coronavirus Update
Information for shielding and protecting people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable from COVID-19.
National guidance on shielding and protecting extremely vulnerable – COVID-19
Letters will be sent from GPs and consultants this week to people in the highest risk category.
Further information (March 21st) on
Community based health and social care and ambulance services
including Community based PPE Guidance
ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES – FOOD / TOILET PAPER / CLEANING / etc for social care providers using supermarkets and
other local suppliers.
If you are struggling to maintain supplies, a few suggestions
Ask your local Age Concern, or similar group if they can help with volunteers to fetch and deliver the required supplies.
Talk to the manager at the store, explaining the circumstance and taking evidence of your position / role. As an example, this has proved very successful with a branch of Morrisons, the order was assembled and collected from a side entrance.
https://www.bidfood.co.uk/care-homes/ have proved helpful to new customers and arranged deliveries.
Contact your MP (& Councillors) MP details available at https://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/contact-your-mp/
This has worked for at least one operator, their MP rep contacted them instantly and put them in contact with the supermarket HQ for action.
When this is all over, remember to support those who supported you.
The Coronavirus Bil has now been published.
Are social care staff counted as Key Workers?
Updated information, 20th Match
Apparently, they are on the list as used by the PM for the use of schools for childcare, so allowing the parent /s to carry on in their work role. It is becoming clear that some schools are not being helpful about accepting anything other than a very tight definition, wanting to see pay-slips and evidence from the employer. For those working for the NHS, it is quite simple. It is hoped that this situation will be clarified as a matter of urgency.
Holiday Clubs (Easter Holidays are almost here)
It seems that most holiday clubs will not run due to Corvid-19, this may be amended, but it is a question worth asking locally. will these still operate for children of key-workers?
New guidance on how to evidence self-isolation due to coronavirus without needing a GP Fit note:
If you cannot get supplies of PPE, please contact the National Supply Disruption Line and you need to be persistent
The National Supply Disruption line
Tel: 0800 915 9964
Do not try to buy FFP3 masks these are considered unecessary in socal care situations.
NHS Videos of donning & doffing PPE (March 24th)
This video shows how to safely don (put on) PPE specific to COVID-19 and should be used in conjunction with the quick guide to donning PPE and local policies.
This video shows how to safely doff (take off) PPE specific to COVID-19 and should be used in conjunction with the quick guide to doffing PPE and local policies.
if we can locate social care specific examples, they will be added
Debbie Harris – Deputy Chief Medical Officer for PHE said that ALL PPE must be changed after each contact with a resident. Some were under the impression that the mask could continue being used for up to 20 minutes having being told this by medical professionals.
Updated information – March 20th
________ __________ ________________ _____________
There have been reports of PPE with long expired BBE dates, or new lables over previous BBE dates, we cannot advise on this, and suggest that you e-mail The National Supply Disruption line below for help. You may also wish to contact your H&S advisor, or insurer for advice.
We know that supplies of personal protective equipment to the care sector is fundamental for the good care of individuals with suspected symptoms of Covid-19.
We are clear that no wholesaler has been asked to prioritise NHS provision over the care sector nor should they be doing so.
Free distribution of fluid repellent facemasks from the pandemic flu stock will start this today Wednesday 18th March, with every care home and homecare provider receiving at least 300 facemasks. We anticipate the distribution will be complete by next Tuesday. This is aimed at tiding over the initial rise in demand following the change of guidance on facemasks last week. Providers are not required to take action; the stock will be delivered to them.
We are working rapidly with wholesalers to ensure a longer-term supply of all aspects of personal protective equipment, including gloves, aprons, facemasks and hand sanitiser. For future PPE requirements, care providers should order PPE from their usual suppliers.
If care providers have immediate concerns overs their supply of PPE, there is now a dedicated line for you, the health and social care sector.
The National Supply Disruption line
Tel: 0800 915 9964
In the future, if a care provider is unable to get PPE from their normal supplier, the supplier is will be asked to report this to the National Supply Disruption Response (NSDR) team (as above), who can advise on alternative suppliers.
PAs are not included in this distribution and are expected to have their own supply line. This also applies to any self-employed carers.
Again, further information is being sought.
COVID-19: Changes to standard and enhanced ID checking guidelines
Discharge of patients to social care who have tested positive for Covid-19 and what to do when clients in social care develop symptoms of Covid-19 and what actions to take with staff who have been supporting those developing, or having Covid-19.
Sets out how health and care systems and providers should change their discharging arrangements and the provision of community support during the coronavirus situation.
There is information from the ECDC below –
‘Coronavirus Bill’ and your care business: what to look out for in the emergency legislation
On 17 March, Health Secretary Matt Hancock unveiled details of emergency legislation to be presented as a bill to the House of Commons within the next week – the ‘Coronavirus Bill’.
Infection, Prevention & Control
A comprehensive slidedeck from E Berks Care Association
Other sources of Information
Coronavirus / Covid-19
This is intended as a guide to easily access some of the sources of advice and guidance available for you.
The CQC provide a range of routes to access their information, such as newsletters, they can be located https://www.cqc.org.uk/guidance-providers/adult-social-care
This government website provides information for both employers and employee;
ACAS provides advice for both employers and employees and has a free advice line
This is a link to an advice document from ADASS, the LGA and the CPA, Social care provider resilience during COVID-19;
Many providers are adding advice to their websites and, or printing information such as effective hand-washing and passing this to clients and their families.
If you are struggling with supplies of PPE, we suggest talking with your local authority, or perhaps linking with other providers to share supplies.
A TV advertising campaign is to be started. You need to be aware of changes in advice guidance and so make sure that you update your organisations data frequently.
General best practice: business growth, HR, Employment Law, Health & Safety
- Citation, has gathered some of the most frequently asked questions around both the Health & Safety and HR and Employment Law implications of the spread of coronavirus and put together some practical steps on how to move forward safely and keep your people and premises safe: https://www.citation.co.uk/coronavirus-your-questions-answered/?utm_source=partner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=partner_ _coronavirusqs_mar19
- With hand hygiene as important as ever, watch this free hand hygiene training module for employees: https://youtu.be/hZ1ANWhD2pQ
- This article from Citation, looks at some of the best ways to plan ahead to manage the spread of coronavirus and how to assess the risks of travelling to other countries, along with some of the best working practices around workplace hygiene: https://www.citation.co.uk/news/health-and-safety/coronavirus-managing-risks-to-your-staff-and-workplace/?utm_source=partner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=partner_coronavirusrisks_mar19
- With more employees working from home who might not typically do so, this guide from Citation outlines the key points for implementing temporary homeworking and making it work for your business: https://www.citation.co.uk/news/hr-and-employment-law/a-guide-to-temporary-homeworking-due-to-coronavirus/?utm_source=partner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=partner_coronavirushomeworking_mar19
- What are the financial relief packages available to businesses to support with coronavirus? https://www.citation.co.uk/news/hr-and-employment-law/covid-19-chancellor-announces-financial-relief-package-to-boost-economy-and-protect-businesses/?utm_source=partner&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=partner_coronavirusboost_mar19
- What measures did the government announce in the budget to support businesses? Get the latest in this article from Citation: https://www.citation.co.uk/news/hr-and-employment-law/budget-2020-how-the-government-aims-to-protect-people-and-jobs-in-the-face-of-covid-19/?utm_source=partner&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=partner_coronavirusbudget_mar19
Below is the CQC Annual Provider Survey, you may already have received this directly. Do take the time to complete this and return it. If CQC do not have the views and opinions of providers, they cannot take these into account, these are important.
CQC Annual Provider Survey
I wanted to email you personally to encourage you to complete our annual survey of providers before the deadline on 6th March. This survey helps us to get to the heart of your views and experiences of CQC. It is essential for us to understand this so that we can learn from you and improve on what we do. It provides important information for me, my Executive Team, and the CQC Board, to assess our performance and identify how we can continue to adapt and respond to your feedback.
Please complete the survey by clicking on this link:
The survey will close at midnight on 6th March. Please ensure you submit your response for it to be included.
The survey covers important issues such as consistency, demands on your time from CQC, and how well we are performing our role. The more responses we receive the better informed we are about these matters, and the better able we are to fulfil our purpose.
Can I thank you for your time. We look forward to hearing your views.
Care Quality Commission
About the survey
The survey should take between 25 and 40 minutes to complete. You can save the survey before you submit it.
Please note that you must click ‘Submit’ at the end of the survey for your responses to be analysed.
How we will use the survey
We ensure the information we use from survey responses remains anonymous. We do this by keeping the identity of invitees separate from the responses we analyse so that participants can’t be identified from the survey data we produce, use and share.
To assist us in this please do not write information in your open responses that identifies you.
Your responses will be stored securely and analysed by CQC’s Performance Team. We may share your anonymous responses with organisations working with us for learning and evaluation purposes and where confidentiality agreements are in place.
We’ll use your survey responses to learn and improve. It’ll also help us understand how well we are performing against our strategy.
We’ll publish the aggregated findings of the survey on our website. We’ll only report aggregated results, for example, “50% of respondents reported…”. We may report some individual comments, but it won’t be possible to identify any individual respondent from them. Results will also appear in our Annual Report and Accounts and may feature in other publications.
For any other queries, to make a complaint or send us a compliment, or if you have a serious concern about someone’s safety or wellbeing, please go to our website or contact our National Customer Service Centre by telephone on 03000 616161. We cannot process official complaints about CQC from this survey.
To opt out of further communication about the CQC Annual Provider Survey for 2019-20 please click below
The latest edition of the Social Care e-magazine – Driven by Health with Care – is now available at https://www.drivenbyhealth.co.uk/magazine/carpe-diem/
Brexit and it’s effect on Social Care
Brexit has finally arrived, and with it comes the year long process of reprising our country and our laws from the EU, raising yet more concerns for the sector. It has been advised that the Government’s Migration Advisory Committee carers will be considered ‘low skilled EU workers’. Currently EU nationals make up 104,000 carers working in the UK, with this number still looking to grow. Free movement will cease to end in 2021, therefore ending the increase for our staffing numbers.
Here at Driven By Health with Care would like to urge the committee to review this statement, as carer’s although low paid, are not low skilled and with social care in crisis this will only be adding to the worries of all within this sector.
IOM UNITED KINGDOM
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is the UN Migration agency. Established in 1951, IOM works with migrants, governments and other partners to provide humane responses to
the growing migration challenges of today. With nearly 400 offices and 11,000 staff worldwide, IOM promotes international cooperation and dialogue on migration issues, to assist in the search for practical solutions to key issues facing migrants and societies alike.
In the UK, key areas of IOM’s work include resettlement and integration, community cohesion, combatting human trafficking and modern slavery, diaspora and development, migrant assistance,
supporting migrant children and migration policy and research.
SUPPORTING VULNERABLE PEOPLE TO ACCESS THE EU SETTLEMENT SCHEME
These documents (below) offer much useful data and links, including where to get more information and agncies with grant funding to help
The Trading Standards Chartered Institute has published Care Home Complaints:
Business Guidance, this is a consultation document, please take the time to respond
You have only until January 3rd 2020 to do this.
The overall document contains useful information about how social care providers can effectively manage and learn from complaints.
Reviewing the case: The right to appeal in adult social care
The Independent Age report ‘Reviewing the case: The right to appeal in adult social care’ shines a light on a neglected but crucial aspect of adult social care: how people can challenge decisions about the care and support they receive. While the Government has previously acknowledged the importance of a robust appeals system for adult social care and consulted on this in 2015, no response to the consultation has been published to date.
New Freedom of Information research for this report confirms that as few as one in five local authorities have put in place a separate appeals process, with the majority instead relying on a complaints process which can be unfit for purpose. We are calling on the Government to introduce a statutory appeals process for adult social care and our report discusses the clear advantages this system would offer
CQC’s report: The state of health care and adult social care in England 2018/19, can be downloaded below
This is the accompanying press release.
Growing pressures on access and staffing risk creating ‘perfect storm’ for people using mental health and learning disability services
Growing pressures on access and staffing risk creating ‘perfect storm’ for people using mental health and learning disability services
The Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) annual assessment of the state of health and social care in England shows that quality ratings have been maintained overall – but people’s experience of care is determined by whether they can access good care when they need it.
Providing the right access to the right care at the right time is increasingly key to the sustainability of health and social care as services struggle to cope with increased demand. When people can’t access the services they need, the risk is that they are pushed into inappropriate care settings – ending up in emergency departments because they can’t access the care they need outside hospital, or in crisis because they can’t access community based mental health and learning disability services.
Difficulties in accessing the right care can mean that people with a learning disability or autism end up detained in unsuitable hospitals. CQC’s ongoing thematic review, which began in 2018, highlighted the prolonged use of segregation for people with severe and complex problems who should instead be receiving specialist care from staff with highly specialised skills.
This year’s State of Care considers the pressures faced by health and social care as a whole – but focuses particularly on inpatient mental health and learning disability services, the area where CQC is seeing an impact on quality.
While the overall quality picture for the mental health sector, which includes community mental health services, remains stable, this masks a real deterioration in some specialist inpatient services which has continued after 31 July 2019, the cut-off point for the data included in the report. As at 30 September 20191:
- 10% of inpatient services for people with learning disabilities and/or autism were rated inadequate, as compared to 1% in 2018
- 7% of child and adolescent mental health inpatient services were rated inadequate (2018: 3%)
- 8% of acute wards for adults of working age and psychiatric intensive care units were rated inadequate (2018: 2%).
Since October 2018, 14 independent mental health hospitals that admit people with a learning disability and/or autism have been rated inadequate and put into special measures. Two of these services have since improved, three are now closed and one service is still registered but is closed to new admissions with no people resident.
Although inspectors have seen much good and some outstanding care, they have also seen too many people using mental health and learning disability services being looked after by staff who lack the skills, training, experience or support from clinical staff to care for people with complex needs. In the majority of mental health inpatient services rated inadequate or requires improvement, a lack of appropriately skilled staff was identified as an issue in the inspection report. This reflects a national shortage of nurses in these areas of practice, with 8% fewer learning disability nurses registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council in 2019 than 2015.
Access and staffing are presenting challenges across all care settings, with geographic disparities – as highlighted in last year’s State of Care – presenting particular barriers in some parts of the country. People sharing their experiences with CQC have described having to ‘chase’ care in order to receive basic services, or experiencing worsening health as they move from service to service, unable to access the care they need.
Where patients struggle to access non-urgent services in their local community, including GP and dental services, this can have a direct impact on secondary care services. Figures for emergency admissions after attending the emergency department are continuing to rise year-on-year. This peaked at 31.2% of attendances in December 2018, and in July 2019 it was 28.9% – the highest figure for July in at least the last five years. There has also been an increase in referral to treatment times over the last year, with 4.4 million people at the end of June 2019 waiting to start treatment – an increase of 40% since June 2014.
In adult social care, issues around workforce – including a lack of qualified staff – and funding continue to contribute to the fragility of the sector. 2018/19 saw providers continuing to exit the market and in 2018, CQC twice exercised its legal duty to notify local authorities that there was a credible risk of service disruption because of provider business failure. These were the first notifications of this type CQC has issued in four years of running its Market Oversight scheme.
Ian Trenholm, Chief Executive of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said;
“In this year’s State of Care, we have highlighted mental health and learning disability inpatient services because that’s where we are starting to see an impact on quality – and on people. There has been a deterioration in ratings in these services – and our inspection reports highlight staff shortages, or care delivered by staff who aren’t trained or supported to look after people with complex needs, as a reason for this.
“Increased demand combined with challenges around workforce and access risk creating a perfect storm – meaning people who need support from mental health, learning disability or autism services may receive poor care, have to wait until they are at crisis point to get the help they need, be detained in unsuitable services far from home, or be unable to access care at all.
“We are strengthening our approach to how we look at these services, and how we use the information that people share with us, so that we can act more quickly to spot and act on poor care. But having the right staff to deliver good care is crucial to turning the tide – as are better integrated community services to prevent people ending up in the wrong place. We’ve seen some excellent care where services collaborate and we want to see more local services working together.
“While we’ll continue to call out staffing issues at provider level when these have an impact on care, we’re also calling for system-wide action on workforce planning which encourages more flexible and collaborative approaches to staff skills and career paths. The ambitious plans to expand the mental health workforce to meet an increase in demand must be accelerated.
“We’ll continue to celebrate the providers – like those highlighted in this report – who are thinking beyond barriers to work together in new ways that not only improve quality but give their teams more development opportunities and flexibility to work across different settings, supporting them to deliver great care.”
Peter Wyman, Chair of the Care Quality Commission, said:
“The fact that quality ratings across health and social care remain broadly stable – due to the dedication and hard work of staff and leaders – should be celebrated. But at the same time, we need to acknowledge that people’s experience of care is not always good – too many people are facing unacceptable challenges and cannot get the right care in the right place and at the right time.
“Last year we warned that the continuing lack of a long-term sustainable funding solution for adult social care was having a damaging impact on the quality and quantity of available care. There is an urgent need for this solution to be prioritised by Parliament and Government – the failure to find a consensus for a future funding model continues to drive instability in this sector. Organisations that represent people who use services are telling us that the challenges faced by people, their families and their carers in getting the care and support they need are strongly related to pressures on local authority budgets and a lack of social care funding.
“The impact of these pressures is being felt across all health and care settings. We head into winter after a summer which saw a record-breaking number of patients attending A&E. Staff continue to do an incredible job, but the strain is starting to show – emergency departments were the core service that our inspectors were most likely to rate as Inadequate or Requires Improvement.
“This report points to examples that show how providers are working together more effectively – often using technology to help – to ensure that people get the care they need when they need it. But their efforts must be supported by Parliament, commissioners and national and local leaders in order to deliver real change in how and where people are cared for, and how they are supported to stay well.”
This year’s State of Care draws on quantitative analysis of inspection ratings of almost 32,000 services and providers, in addition to other monitoring information including staff and public surveys, and performance. It also draws on qualitative analysis of interviews and focus groups with CQC inspection staff and voluntary organisations, secondary analysis of ‘Share Your Experience’ comments and inspection reports, and case studies of the experiences of people who use services and innovative providers.
1 Data cited here is 31 July 2018 – 30 September 2019.
The latest edition of Driven by Health with Care magazine is now available
Interesting and useful articles and links
Social care providers encouraged to unite to tackle health inequalities in learning disability
The health of people with learning disabilities is worse than that of the general population with common health problems including respiratory disease, heart disease and obesity.
People with learning disabilities die earlier than the general population. Many of the health inequalities experienced by people with a learning disability are preventable. Social care providers have a major role to play in helping people to access good healthcare and to support people to make decisions about their lifestyle.
VODG is committed to tackling health inequalities experienced by disabled people. With the support of NHS England and NHS Improvement VODG is organising a series of three national conferences for social care leaders who want to improve the health of people with learning disabilities. Social care providers are being encouraged to actively work alongside VODG and system partners to collectively make a difference to people’s lives.
Rhidian Hughes, chief executive of the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group said:
“Reducing health inequalities is an urgent matter. These events offer social care providers the opportunity to work together to collectively improve practice and to support system wide efforts to tackle health inequalities.”
VODG recently published in partnership with the Centre for Disability Studies at the University of Lancaster a good practice guide on food and drink provision when supporting people using care services. The report recognises that sustained change involves addressing organisational cultures and personal attitudes as well as embedding a focus on supporting people to eat high quality food.
The social media hashtag is #TakeAStandTackleHealthInequalities
Leading for better health is a conference for leaders who want to explore how to foster organisational cultures, systems
and practices that reduce health inequalities.
Date: Thursday 3 October 2019
Click here to register for London.
NAO report – Exiting the EU: supplying the health and social care sectors
UPDATED Free Flu Jab Information for Social Care Staff
The brand new flu vaccination campaign for health and social care workers launches for the coming 2019/20 flu season. “Time to get your flu jab” takes a new approach – created for use by all social care organisations by Public Health England and NHS England & NHS Improvement – the staff facing campaign focusses on the protective benefit of the flu vaccination using a “Shield” motif.
Campaign materials show social care, social worker and other community based care staff going about their work protected by the shield of flu vaccination and the message “Help protect yourself, your family and the people you support. Get your free flu jab”.
The campaign is available to all organisations to use and adapt to encourage the uptake of flu vaccinations by frontline health and social care staff – the resources available include:
- Social Care and community/mental worker posters (three variations)
- NHS Trusts posters (6 posters – featuring a Doctor, Porter, Nurse, Mental Health Nurse, Social Worker and Paramedic)
- Leaflets for health and social care audiences
- Sticker artwork
- Social media toolkits including static and animated images for Instagram, Twitter and Facebook
- Brand artwork
- Communications toolkit (including long and short copy)
- Email signatures
All materials, including adaptable artwork and social media tools, are available on PHE’s Campaign Resource Centre for colleagues to download or print locally. We would encourage organisations to localise these resources to suit their own local requirements – however please do use the brand guidelines which can be found here.
We are also keen to extend our photo-library to include a wider range of health and social care roles so do let us know if you have images you own that you are willing and able to share with colleagues across the health and social care system.
*To Note: There are a range of digital resources available – those targeting social care staff use the phrase “” and not “patients”.
NEW CQC PIR
Below along with guidance is the important new PIR from CQC
FLU Vaccination Update
NEW materials promoting the flu vaccination for social care workers available to download FREE from end of August
A brand new flu vaccination campaign for health and social care workers is launching this year, delivered by Public Health England (PHE) and NHS England and NHS Improvement.
“Time to get your flu jab” will take a new approach to encouraging the uptake of flu vaccinations by social care staff – emphasising the protective benefit of the flu vaccination with a “Shield” motif and the message “Take care of others by taking care of yourself. If you work in the community, it’s time to get your annual flu jab”.
Campaign materials have been designed to show social care staff going about their work protected by the shield of flu vaccination – all materials, including adaptable artwork and social media tools, will be live on PHE’s Campaign Resource Centre for colleagues to download or print locally by the end of August. Further communication will be sent to you as and when these are made available.
The resources available include:
- A4 posters featuring different social care professionals (alongside posters featuring healthcare workers in clinical settings for NHS Trusts, which are already available to download)
- “I’ve had my flu jab” Sticker artwork
- Social media tools including gifs and digital banners
- Brand artwork
- Communications toolkit (including long and short copy)
We encourage all social care settings to adopt this campaign and brand when encouraging staff to get their flu vaccinations.
For any queries relating to this campaign, please contact Partnerships@phe.gov.uk
Accessing NHS Mail
Welcome to your Entry Level ‘Data Security and Protection Toolkit’ workbook!
This workbook outlines the 14 steps you must complete for the ‘Entry Level Assessment’ This has been created for
social care providers and it allows you to sign up to and benefit from NHSmail
CQC PIR Changes
CQC are making improvements to the Provider Information Return (PIR) which includes some amendments to questions and a change to an annual collection. This month they will start to ask all providers to complete an updated PIR and then on an annual basis.
CQC have revised the PIR questions and process based on feedback and to allow them to expand how they use the information collected. Requests for PIRs will be sent during the anniversary month of a provider’s first site visit and CQC have already started to write to providers to highlight this date.
The annual PIR will help CQC to identify areas to explore in more detail as part of our continuous monitoring of a service and ahead of a site visit. They will continue to gather and review feedback to ensure continual development of the PIR and CQC keep you updated on this.
The amended questions can be seen here:
The Advocacy Project Healing Words
We’d like to tell you about this year’s Healing Words poetry competition which celebrates creativity as a means of supporting mental health. This competition was a huge success last time it ran and we hope you will support the 2019 competition.
At The Advocacy Project, we believe a healthy society supports people’s mental wellbeing. In times where 1 in 4 of us experience mental health problems, it’s something that affects us deeply on both an individual and collective level. There’s now increasing evidence to show creativity is beneficial to our mental health – and we want to actively promote this.
“Engaging in creative activities such as doodling, music or writing
just once a day can lead to a more positive state of mind.”
Can you help us get people involved?
We want to reach as many people as possible, to help inspire those affected by mental health problems to use their creativity to improve their wellbeing. Please take a minute to share the details on social media: retweet on Twitter or LinkedIn (please use #HealingWords2019 in all posts).
More about the competition
I’ve included below an overview of the competition for you to share with colleagues, contacts and communities. You can also watch actress Joanna Scanlan’s video introducing the competition.
If you’ve got any questions, call Jo Kay on 020 8969 3000
CEO, The Advocacy Project
Healing words… the journey to wellness and recovery
“Writing is a very cathartic experience. It’s a chance to express feelings I had always thought were indescribable” Sarah
We’re inviting you to enter a poetry competition, run by The Advocacy Project. If you’ve experienced a mental health problem, or you’re a family member or friend of someone who has, we welcome you to send us your poem.
Creativity can help people express themselves during the darkest days of mental illness and throughout recovery. We want to share this with as many people as possible to improve understanding of mental health.
Closing date: 8 Sep 2019, 5pm
-Darkest days: poems from before the dawn of hope
-Good days and bad days: poems from the road to recovery
-Being well: poems about more peaceful times
-Illustrated poems: poems with illustrations
-Spoken word: poems spoken by the writer
The poems will be judged by six people including Joanna Scanlan – actress and writer. All entrants will remain anonymous from the judges until the award ceremony.
More information and how to enter
Visit www.advocacyproject.org.uk/poetry or call Jo Kay on 020 8969 3000
Involved & informed: good community medicines support
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE);
in collaboration with several other partner organisations, has launched a new initiative to encourage better medicines support for people who are receiving social care services in their homes.
The aim is to ensure the safe and effective use of medicines in the community, so people get the best possible outcomes with a reduced risk of medicine related harm.
To enable better multi-disciplinary working, the campaign encourages health commissioners and local authorities to have a written agreement that sets out clear responsibilities for home-based medicines support.
Understanding primary care networks
A report from the Health Foundation can be downloaded from https://www.health.org.uk/publications/reports/understanding-primary-care-networks
- From 1 July 2019, all patients in England will be covered by a primary care network (PCN) – the most significant reform to general practice in England in a generation.
- PCNs should help to integrate primary care with secondary and community services, and bridge a gap between general practice and emerging Integrated Care Systems.
- Since January 2019, practices have been organising themselves into local networks to provide care at greater scale by sharing staff and some of their funding.
- While PCNs offer huge potential to integrate care and improve services, there is a risk that the speed of implementation will undermine the best intentions of the policy.
This briefing places PCNs in the context of previous changes to general practice funding and contracting. It examines the rationale for networks, explores relevant evidence and draws out intended benefits and possible risks for the future of PCNs.
Additional prompts added to some
Statutory Notifications forms
Re: Additional prompts added to some Statutory Notifications forms
I am writing to let you know that we are making some changes to the way we ask you to report some incidents to us with the aim of reducing the amount of follow up work we need to do with you. These are interim changes, which form part of a larger piece of work.
Registered providers must notify us of certain changes events and incidents that affect their service or the people who use it, notifications are submitted through our portal or via completing a downloadable form and sending it to us by email.
To make it easier for you to understand what we need to know when you notify us and to help us capture additional, more detailed information we are adding additional prompts to the word versions of the following notification forms in the additional information field:
We ask you to continue to notify us, but to also consider the issues identified by these prompts. This change is intended to reduce the need for us to contact you to obtain more information by ensuring we have all relevant facts at the earliest opportunity.
We are currently working on a major project which is intended to improve statutory notifications forms and guidance in relation to:
We are making these interim changes to some of the existing notification changes whilst this larger project is underway. This project aims to reduce the impact on you telling us about incidents that do not meet the threshold for a statutory notification, and removes the need for us to ask for further information relating to an already submitted form. Improved intelligence at an earlier stage will ensure we are assessing risks within provider services appropriately.
Care Quality Commission
EU EXIT CONTINGENCY PLAN TEMPLATE FOR CARE PROVIDERS
This brief template has been developed to support care providers in preparing Contingency Plans for care services as the UK prepares to exit the EU. It is a working document and not intended to be exhaustive. Its key purpose is to help providers ensure continuity in delivering care and support through a record of actions that may be necessary to deal with any possible disruption. Quite simply a Contingency Plan involves preparing for a situation that may not happen but could have major impact if it did. Contingency planning is a crucial part of the routine Business Continuity Planning process.
It is not possible to produce a single guide to cover the full range of different care and support services in adult social care and so this template is intended to be used simply as a framework to developing individual service Contingency Plans. Government advice has been clear that the UK should prepare for all scenarios relating to EU exit – including the option of ‘no-deal’. Communications and information have been issued to businesses and the public, by various Government departments, in support of preparations for the UK exiting the EU. This information can be accessed at: https://www.gov.uk/government/brexit
Don’t forget changes to the NMW in April, details at the ACAS website
Solutions Social Care are running the event below on March 29th and those of you working in Learning Disability may be interested. Please contact the organisers directly with bookings and any queries.