UKHCA

United Kingdom Homecare Association
The professional association for homecare providers

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Updated shielding guidance for the end of national lockdown in EnglandUpdated shielding guidance for the end of national lockdown in England

New shielding guidance has been published for people who are clinically extremely vulnerable. This will be relevant from next Wednesday (2 December), when the national restrictions end.

2 December guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236271

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UKHCA Commercial members Citation hosting free webinar on 2nd Dec 2020UKHCA Commercial members Citation hosting free webinar on 2nd Dec 2020

UKHCA commercial members Citation are hosting a free webinar aimed at the care sector entitled: Employee engagement and wellbeing.

You can sign-up for free here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236269

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Tier restrictions for England announcedTier restrictions for England announced

The tiers for English regions, which will be in force from 2nd November, as announced in the Winter Plan earlier this week have been announced.

Statement - Matt Hancock

Full list of local restriction tiers by area - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236270

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UKHCA's response to the Spending ReviewUKHCA's response to the Spending Review

Responding to the Chancellor’s spending review today, 25 November 2020, United Kingdom Homecare Association UKHCA said:

"Government’s announcement on the one-year Spending Review is exceptionally disappointing. It fails to address, amongst other things, the significant contribution that social care makes to enabling us all to live well at home, and which our valued workforce makes to the economy.

"£1bn across adults’ and children’s services, combined with the discretionary use of the Social Care Precept by local councils, does not bring social care further forward. Nor does it begin to address an underfunded system which was already fragile before the start of the pandemic.

"Government has also announced today increases in the statutory National Minimum Wage and the National Living Wage. UKHCA will publish an updated version of our Minimum Price for Homecare shortly. This price indicates the minimum fee rates which providers should receive from councils and the NHS to cover their legal obligations of running regulated homecare services. This information is vital to inform the budgets which councils and the NHS will begin planning for next year.

"The often-promised and much-needed reform of adult social funding must not be delayed further. As citizens, we all need to know what the State will provide and what we must prepare for ourselves."

Ends

Notes for Editors

1. United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) is the professional association for more than 2,150 domiciliary care providers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

2. As a member-led professional association, UKHCA’s purpose is to enable a strong, sustainable, innovative, and person-led homecare sector to flourish. We represent and support our members so that people can live well and independently at home.

3. For further information please contact:
Matthew Kiernan, Press Officer
United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd
Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH
Telephone: 020 8661 8188
Mobile: 07393 012113
E-mail: media@ukhca.co.uk
Website: www.ukhca.co.uk
Twitter: @ukhca
Registered in England, No. 3083104.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236268

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Revised minimum wage rates from April 2021Revised minimum wage rates from April 2021

The Chancellor has announced National Living Wage (NLW) and National Minimum Wage rates from April 2021, in his Spending Review.

For individuals aged 23 and over the NLW rises by 2.2% from £8.72 to £8.91. (This follows a previous recommendation by the Low Pay Commission that the NLW should apply to those aged 23 and over.)

For 21 to 22-year-olds the rate increases by 2.0% from £8.20 to £8.36 per hour.

For 18 to 20-year-olds the rate increases by 1.7% from £6.45 to £6.56 per hour.

For 16 to 17-year-olds the rate increases by 1.5% from £4.55 to £4.62 per hour.

For apprentices the rate increases by 3.6% from £4.15 to £4.30 per hour.

The daily accommodation offset rate increases by 2.0% from £8.20 to £8.36.

Spending Review 2020 November 2020, para 1.33.

Low Pay Commission Summary and Findings

Press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236267

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Report on PPE supply during COVID-19 pandemicReport on PPE supply during COVID-19 pandemic

The National Audit Office (NAO) has investigated the supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) during the Covid-19 pandemic. Key findings include:

  • 14% - The number of PPE items distributed to social care providers as a percentage of all PPE items nationally distributed, between 20 March and 31 July 2020.
  • 10% - the number of PPE items distributed to social care providers through national schemes as a percentage of their estimated PPE requirement, between 20 March and 31 July 2020. By comparison, trusts received 80% of their estimated requirement.

The NAO concludes the social care sector was hit hard by shortages of PPE, and government needs to understand why national bodies provided more support to hospitals than to social care and how to prevent that happening again.

Read the NAO report


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236265

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National Minimum Wage ToolkitNational Minimum Wage Toolkit

UKHCA's National Minimum Wage Toolkit, mentioned at today's Virtual Care Festival, helps homecare providers ensure they are meeting the National Minimum Wage requirements within their workforce.

Prepared by Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP, the free toolkit sets out the law with practical examples, and gives providers a step-by-step compliance assessment tool. The toolkit also has a practical section for homecare providers written by UKHCA Policy Director Colin Angel on possible actions to achieve compliance with the National Minimum Wage.

Download: National Minimum Wage Toolkit (Revised February 2020)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236266

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DBS filtering rules are changing from 28 November 2020DBS filtering rules are changing from 28 November 2020

Due to a change in legislation the filtering rules for Disclosure and Barring Service checks are changing. The new rules will affect Standard and Enhanced DBS certificates issued on or after 28 November 2020.

DBS will no longer disclose youth reprimands, youth warnings, or youth cautions. They will also no longer automatically disclose all convictions where an individual has more than one conviction. Instead, each individual conviction will be assessed against the appropriate rules.

New filtering rules - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236264

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Meeting friends and family over the Christmas periodMeeting friends and family over the Christmas period

The government has announced that social contact restrictions will relax from 23 and 27 December to allow families and friends to meet over Christmas, subject to forming a 'Christmas bubble' of up to three households and taking steps to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The detailed rules are in new guidance which applies across the UK: Making a Christmas bubble with friends and family - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

The guidance warns that forming a bubble if you are vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable carries additional risks. Guidance is to be published for the clinically extremely vulnerable on how to manage the revised tiered system in England from 2 December and over Christmas.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236262

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"Busting Bureaucracy" report"Busting Bureaucracy" report

The Department for Health and Social Care have published their 'Busting Bureaucracy' report following a consultation that launched in the summer.

The report includes a reference to work underway by NHSX on a "Data Strategy for Health and Social Care", and also refers to CQC's strategy, which is being developed.

 Busting bureaucracy: empowering frontline staff by reducing excess bureaucracy in the health and care system in England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236260

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New Health and Care Intelligence apprenticeship StandardNew Health and Care Intelligence apprenticeship Standard

Public Health England has developed a new level 7 apprenticeship standard for those interested in data analysis roles in the health and care sectors.

Further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236261

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New testing strategy for international arrivalsNew testing strategy for international arrivals

From 15 December the Government will be allowing international travellers (who would otherwise be required to isolate) who arrive into England to reduce their isolation period if they test negative for coronavirus after 5 days of isolation. However, testing will be at the traveller's expense.

Read the press release here. 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236258

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Staying mentally well this winterStaying mentally well this winter

The Department for Health and Social Care have published a policy paper on how they will support people's mental health this winter.

The plan includes a section on support for the social care workforce, referencing Our Frontline and Hospice UK's counselling and trauma helpline. They also mention the bespoke practical support that they have put together working with the NHS and Skills for Care, including support for Registered Managers and the Care Workforce app.

Staying mentally well: winter plan 2020 to 2021 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Previous UKHCA posts on wellbeing support available in England:

CWC mental health grants

Maintaining mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236257

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Government Spending Review – New evidence from UKHCAGovernment Spending Review – New evidence from UKHCA

A recent survey conducted by YouGov, commissioned by UKHCA, shows that more than 9 out of 10 (92%) people aged 65 years and above agreed that:

“People would prefer to be supported at home, rather than in a care home”.

A view which 9 out of 10 MPs (87%) across all parties, also agreed with.

Read the full media release here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236255

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Prime Minister announces Winter PlanPrime Minister announces Winter Plan

The Prime Minister has announced a Winter Plan. The plan covers the approach to tiered restrictions after the national lockdown restrictions are lifted. It also outlines a 'route back to normality' including increased testing, vaccination and improved treatment for those with the virus.

In England from 2 December, regardless of tier:

  • The stay at home requirement will end, with travel being permitted again subject to guidance in each tier.
  • Shops, personal care, gyms and the wider leisure sector will reopen.
  • Collective worship, weddings and outdoor sports can resume.
  • People will no longer be limited to seeing only one other person in outdoor public spaces - the rule of 6 will now apply outdoors as it did in the previous set of tiers.

Details of restrictions within each tier are outlined in the Plan.

Read the Winter Plan or Winter Plan Summary here.

Local restriction tiers: what you need to know - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Posters outlining the tier restrictions are available here.

Press release

Press conference statement

We anticipate further information later this week, including which regions will fall in which Tier.

The Prime Minister also advised that there were discussions underway with the devolved administrations to seek to agree a common "time-limited Christmas dispensation" over the Christmas period. However, he cautioned that this would not be a 'normal' Christmas. Details yet to be announced.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236256

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Free visa scheme extended for key frontline health professionalsFree visa scheme extended for key frontline health professionals

The Government has extended the scheme offering free visa extensions for health professionals whose visas were due to expire between 31 March 2020 and 1 October 2020 to those with visas expiring on or before 31 March 2021.

The scheme applies to doctors, nurses, paramedics, midwives, occupational therapists, psychologists as well as a range of allied health professionals listed in the guidance. It covers healthcare professionals working in the NHS and the independent health and care sector. Their visas will be extended for a year, free of all fees and charges, including the Immigration Health Surcharge.

This may benefit homecare providers who employ registered nurses and other regulated professionals.

Thousands more health workers to benefit from visa extensions - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236254

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Directors of adult social services call for an increase in homecare fundingDirectors of adult social services call for an increase in homecare funding

A report by the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) highlights the important role of homecare in keeping people safe and well at home in the pandemic and calls for more financial support for the sector.

The report summarises the results of a survey of directors of adult social services in England, and the pressures faced by councils in coping with COVID-19, with increased demand from people who need care because of disruption to their support from other types of service, family carers or PAs, or hospital discharge.

ADASS call for an additional £468 million for projected overspend and to safeguard essential care and support services, and an extra £480 million for local care markets to provide increased care at home, and other community support, as well as a sustainable, long-term solution to funding adult social care.

ADASS_Autumn_Survey_Report_2020_EMBARGOED_UNTIL_6AM_23_11_20.pdf (mcusercontent.com)

The report is based on a survey of local authorities (101 of 151) in England and has been issued in advance of the Government's Spending Review.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236252

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UKHCA's CEO Dr Jane Townson speaking at the Virtual Care Festival this WednesdayUKHCA's CEO Dr Jane Townson speaking at the Virtual Care Festival this Wednesday

This Wednesday the #VirtualCareFestival gets underway, from the team behind the Care Show. UKHCA's CEO Jane Townson will be one of the keynote speakers. Find out more, including details on how to book your free pass here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236251

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More information issued on winter grants for vulnerable householdsMore information issued on winter grants for vulnerable households

The government has issued details of funding to support vulnerable households this winter with the cost of food, energy, water bills and other associated costs.

The £170 million COVID Winter Grant Scheme, which will be made available in early December 2020 and covers the period until the end of March 2021, will be distributed by to county councils and unitary authorities in England (including metropolitan councils and London boroughs).

COVID Winter Grant Scheme - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236249

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Blog: Good News Stories from UKHCA members, mid-late Nov '20Blog: Good News Stories from UKHCA members, mid-late Nov '20

Read our latest "Good news stories and innovation from the #homecare sector" blog featuring the great work by UKHCA members.

Featuring:
Helping Hands Home Care
Right at Home Stevenage, Letchworth and Hitchin
Caremark Solihull
Bluebird Care West Berkshire
Home Instead Senior Care Stevenage and North Herts
Radfield Home Care Bexhill, Hastings & Battle
Kare Plus Newcastle
Everycare Dorchester
Carebridge Staffing
Cera

Link to the full blog here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236250

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New Care Concierge ServiceNew Care Concierge Service

Legal and General have launched a new Care Concierge Service which is designed to be an online end-to-end journey for those looking to navigate the often complex care world.

The website aims to marry the best in online content, tools and calculators with expert telephone-based support.

https://www.legalandgeneral.com/retirement/care/

The website has been developed in partnership with Care Sourcer and the Society of Later Life Advisers, and refers to UKHCA's calculation of a minimum price for care.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236263

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Northern Ireland Executive agree further lockdown measuresNorthern Ireland Executive agree further lockdown measures

The Executive has agreed new measures from 27 November, which are expected to last two weeks. These will include:

  • Closure of all retail except essential retail, close contact services, driving instruction, eat in hospitality, leisure, places of worship, entertainment and (non-elite) sporting events.
  • Households cannot meet other than in bubbles or where there are other specified exceptions.
  • Schools will remain open. Universities and Further Education will be by distance learning where possible.

Statement available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236247

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Government announces weekly testing for homecare workforce - UKHCA's responseGovernment announces weekly testing for homecare workforce - UKHCA's response

The Government has announced new weekly testing for asymptomatic homecare workers. The full announcement can be seen on the DHSC website here.

Commenting on the news, UKHCA’s Policy Director, Colin Angel, said:

"Until now, routine testing of asymptomatic homecare workers has not been available. This was largely supported by evidence from a prevalence survey, showing that transmission rates of the virus amongst homecare workers was similar to the general population. This is unlike the much higher prevalence rates amongst staff working in care homes. Even so, there has been a sense that people who used homecare services had received a lower priority from Government than those using residential care.

"It seems clear that a proportion of people infected with coronavirus do not develop symptoms themselves, but are able to pass it on to others, including the people they support. The availability of routine testing will be welcomed by many, particularly members of the public who have been concerned about the risk of transmission from careworkers visiting their home.

This winter brings a combination of seasonal pressures which occur every year, compounded with staff absences, including self-isolation. An unintended consequence of asymptomatic testing, is the possibility of staff being required to self-isolate as a result of a false positive test result, stretching workforce capacity even further.

Ends
Notes for Editors

1. United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) is the professional association for more than 2,100 domiciliary care providers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

2. As a member-led professional association, UKHCA’s purpose is to enable a strong, sustainable, innovative and person-led homecare sector to flourish. We represent and support our members so that people can live well and independently at home. UKHCA’s members agree to abide by the Association’s Code of Practice, which can be found here.
3. Fourteen of UKHCA’s non-executive directors are elected by the membership of the association and serve for a period of three years. The Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Honorary Secretary are elected by the non-executive directors from within their number. The Association’s Chief Executive and Corporate Services Director are also non-executive directors.
4. For further information please contact:

Matthew Kiernan, Press Officer
United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd
Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH

Telephone: 020 8661 8165
Mobile: 07393 012 113
E-mail: media@ukhca.co.uk
Website: www.ukhca.co.uk
Twitter: @ukhca

Registered in England, No. 3083104.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236246

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Northern Ireland 'Phone First' trialNorthern Ireland 'Phone First' trial

A new 'Phone First' service is being trialled in some parts of Northern Ireland where people need urgent care but their condition is not life-threatening. It allows telephone advice to be sought prior to attending a hospital Emergency Department.

Further details


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236245

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Research and resources round up 20 NovemberResearch and resources round up 20 November

CQC's latest insight report includes their latest data on homecare PPE access, staff absences and coronavirus case levels. You can find it here.

Home Office officials do an informational interview about what the points based immigration system means for business on "Business and the future of immigration in 2021" on the Intelligence Squared podcast.

The latest CQC podcast covers their State of Care report (search for 'CQC Connect' on your preferred podcast provider).

The Centre for Better Ageing has published a State of Ageing 2020 report. The report highlights the risks of increasing health inequality.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236243

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The sleep-in crisis - what's next?The sleep-in crisis - what's next?

Anthony Collins Solicitors have written a blog 'The sleep-in crisis - what's next?' as we wait for the Supreme Court to hand down its decision in Tomlinson-Blake v the Royal Mencap Society and the joined case of Shannon v Rampersad.

The sleep-in crisis - what's next?, Anna Dabek (anthonycollins.com)

Partner Anna Dabek discusses how social care employers in the UK can prepare for the judgment, whichever way it goes.

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236259

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Restraint training must be certified by April 2021Restraint training must be certified by April 2021

The CQC has written to providers to advise that all restraint training must be certified as complying with the Restraint Reduction Network training standards by April 2021.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236244

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Updates for Wales: CIW Annual Report, Vaccine statement and self isolation paymentsUpdates for Wales: CIW Annual Report, Vaccine statement and self isolation payments

Care Inspectorate Wales have published their Chief Inspector's Annual Report, which is available here.

The self isolation payment scheme of £500 that was announced on 30 October is now open for applications from Local Authorities.

Vaughn Gething has issued a statement that provides a general update about the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines in Wales.

Informational statement on PPE procurements in Wales.

The Older People's Commissioner for Wales have issued a joint statement calling for a relentless focus on protecting older people's rights in the next phase of the pandemic.

The Welsh Government has confirmed its not easing the restrictions at this stage. Statement.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236242

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Reminder to apply to the EU Settlement SchemeReminder to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme

If you have staff who is an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, there are benefits to applying for EU settled status well before the deadline of 30th June 2021. Successful applications will lead to either settled or pre-settled status.

Ensuring staff apply as early as possible gives them the chance to address any issues if the Home Office ask for more information or they need to re-apply (where appropriate to do so) before the deadline of 30 June 2021 without impacting their eligibility to work in the UK.

Keep in mind that the application process is taking longer due to COVID-19 delays.

Read more information here

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236241

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Whole area testing in Methyr Tydfil to be first in WalesWhole area testing in Methyr Tydfil to be first in Wales

Having learnt from the mass testing pilot in Liverpool, from this Saturday all residents in Methyr Tydfil will be eligible for COVID testing even if they don't have symptoms. This will be the first whole-area testing in Wales.

Press release

Statement

Guidance

Gov.uk press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236240

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Supporting older people to live to their fullest potential in Northern IrelandSupporting older people to live to their fullest potential in Northern Ireland

Communities Minister Caral Ni­ Chuili­n has announced an extension to the term of the Executive's Active Ageing Strategy to May 2022.

The existing Active Ageing Strategy was due to end in January 2021. The Executive has worked to update the actions in the Strategy, including those to mitigate the medium to long-term impacts of the current pandemic.

More information here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236238

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Statistics on Community Care published in Northern IrelandStatistics on Community Care published in Northern Ireland

The Department of Health has published statistics on provision of community care in Northern Ireland. For homecare, the statistics show that on average, 23,425 clients, received homecare during the survey week Survey Week, 8th - 14th September 2019. This has remained relatively constant over the last 5 years.

Trend analysis in the 2019 NI Domiciliary Care Annual Survey publication presents an increasing pattern of '0-15', and '16-30' min visits, and decreasing trend in '30+' min visits.

An 8% increase was observed in the number of regional homecare hours delivered in 2019 compared to 2015.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236239

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Health Minister wants mass testing in Northern IrelandHealth Minister wants mass testing in Northern Ireland

According to a BBC report, Robin Swann, the health minister has written to the UK Government asking for four million fast-turnaround Covid-19 tests. The Department of Health has confirmed Mr Swann's request for the fast tests, which would allow Northern Ireland's entire population to be tested.

These tests would suitable for mass testing and they do not have to be processed in a lab.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236237

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Update on the Contact Tracing Service in Northern IrelandUpdate on the Contact Tracing Service in Northern Ireland

Last month the Contact Tracing Service (CTS) moved to a 'digital first' model which provides an online self-service contact tracing for the majority of people who test positive.

People with a positive test result will receive a text message with a personal code which they can use at a dedicated website to input details of people with whom they were in recent close proximity. These contacts will then be quickly alerted to self-isolate.

There is an easy which guide explains how to use the digital contact tracing service 'digital self-trace' if you have tested positive for COVID-19.

Click here to download the PDF.




Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236235

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PHA provides reassurance on flu vaccination in Northern IrelandPHA provides reassurance on flu vaccination in Northern Ireland

The Public Health Agency (PHA) has provided reassurance that plans to offer the flu vaccine to those who are eligible, and in particular people aged over 65, are proceeding as expected, and there is no shortage.

Dr Gerry Waldron, Head of Health Protection at the PHA, said: "We are concerned that recent comments around the delivery of the flu vaccine may cause undue alarm to those who are still due to receive it, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. As we outlined in October, uptake has been exceptional, with people getting the vaccine in higher numbers than ever before, so a temporary pause was placed on some aspects of the seasonal flu programme until further stock became available.

"As was planned from the outset, vaccines have been and will continue to be distributed in phased deliveries, in line with manufacturer production arrangements, and well in advance of when flu is circulating in the community. As of now, in excess of 1 million flu vaccines are in Northern Ireland for use in eligible groups of people - this is on target."

Read more here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236236

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Next phase of Northern Ireland Executive's Covid-19 public information campaign launchedNext phase of Northern Ireland Executive's Covid-19 public information campaign launched

It's the latest phase of the multi-channel campaign, and shows how the virus can spread through close personal contact in unregulated settings.

View the Covid-19 information videos


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236234

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Northern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann announces £5 million for Domiciliary CareNorthern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann announces £5 million for Domiciliary Care

Health Minister Robin Swann has announced a £5m funding package for Domiciliary Care as well as confirming the completion of a Rapid Learning Review which will help shape plans moving forward.

The new funding can be used to address costs such as the purchase of PPE, enhanced sick pay and additional staffing costs, such as further recruitment and training.

Read more information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236232

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Non-repayable Discretionary Support Self Isolation Grant in Northern IrelandNon-repayable Discretionary Support Self Isolation Grant in Northern Ireland

The Communities Minister has enhanced the existing Covid-19 self-isolation grant, increasing the daily allowance payable and extending the number of days for which an award can be made.

The non-repayable Discretionary Support Self-Isolation Grant assists with short-term living expenses where a person on a low income, or any member of their immediate family, is diagnosed with Covid-19 or is advised to self-isolate in accordance with guidance published by the Public Health Agency.

More information about the grants


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236233

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Scottish Government moves to reform social security systemScottish Government moves to reform social security system

The Scottish Government has announced plans to for Child Disability Payment to replace the DWP's Disability Living Allowance for Children from 2021 and Adult Disability Payment to replace Personal Independence Payment from 2022, with pilot schemes operating before full roll out.

The move is part of the Government's plans to set up a new social security system for Scotland.

More information: https://www.gov.scot/news/child-disability-payment-to-be-introduced-next-summer/


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236231

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Daily update on Covid-19 cases in the UKDaily update on Covid-19 cases in the UK

The Government publishes a daily update of the progress of the coronavirus pandemic as an up to date and authoritative summary of key information. This includes levels of infections, the impact on health in the UK and on measures taken to respond.

Providers can use the data to check the number of people tested positive in their area by entering a postcode.

Link to daily update on Covid-19 cases


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236227

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New film shows importance of ventilation to reduce spread of COVID-19New film shows importance of ventilation to reduce spread of COVID-19

A new short film has been released by the government which shows how coronavirus lingers in enclosed spaces. The film highlights how letting fresh air into indoor spaces can reduce the risk of infection from coronavirus by over 70%.

More information here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236228

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Changes to lockdown levels and permitted travel in ScotlandChanges to lockdown levels and permitted travel in Scotland

Tough Level 4 restrictions will apply to 11 council areas in Scotland from 6 pm on Friday, 20 November until 11 December. This means non-essential shops, pubs, restaurants and gyms will have to close but schools can remain open.

The changes will see the City of Glasgow, Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire, North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire, East Ayrshire, South Ayrshire, Stirling and West Lothian move to Level 4, but the City of Edinburgh, Clackmannanshire, Falkirk, Inverclyde, North Ayrshire, Dundee, Fife, Perth & Kinross and Angus will stay at Level 3.

New travel restrictions will ban people who live in a Level 3 or Level 4 area from travelling outside their local authority except for an essential purpose, like work or caring responsibilities. The regulations will also restrict non-essential travel into a Level 3 or 4 local authority area, except for the same reasons.

Restrictions for those in Level 1 are relaxed to allow eight people from three households to meet outdoors, rather than six people from two households.

New update, 17 November 2020: https://www.gov.scot/news/updates-to-covid-19-protection-levels/

List of level allocations: https://www.gov.scot/news/updates-to-covid-19-protection-levels/

Postcode checker for levels: https://www.gov.scot/check-local-covid-level/

Visits to care homes exempt from national travel restrictions: https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-adult-care-homes-visiting-guidance/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236230

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CQC conducting review of DNAR practice during the pandemicCQC conducting review of DNAR practice during the pandemic

The Care Quality Commission is carrying out a review of 'do not attempt resuscitation' (DNAR) orders which were used earlier in the pandemic, following concerns they were sometimes imposed by blanket decision, without proper consultation or consent.

The review is at request of the Department of Health and Social Care and will focus on seven clinical commissioning group areas, listed in the CQC's announcement.

The review will be initially based on an analysis of conversations with people affected by this issue and other stakeholders, and report on an interim basis in November, with a final report in early 2021.

CQC is inviting people to let them know about their experience, or that of a loved one, by using CQC's Give Feedback on Care service, or by contacting National Customer Service Centre.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236226

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Translations of updated guidance on social distancing now availableTranslations of updated guidance on social distancing now available

Updated guidance on social distancing in England is now available in Welsh, Urdu, Turkish, Somali, Romanian, Punjabi, Polish, Gujarati, Chinese, Bengali and Arabic, as well as large format and easy read versions.

Guidance, Coronavirus (COVID-19): Social distancing

The guidance on New National Restrictions from 5 November is also available in translation.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236224

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The Government gives.... then takes away!The Government gives.... then takes away!

Anthony Collins Solicitors have published a further briefing on the extended furlough scheme, which highlights the topic of serving notice and how it is treated under the scheme: The Government gives.... then takes away!, published 16 November 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236225

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Research round up - 13 NovemberResearch round up - 13 November

COVID-19 death rates amongst those with learning disabilities are significantly higher than the general population - according to the findings of research by the Department for Health and Social Care, Public Health England and the Chief Medical Officer. Further information. Press release.

Coronavirus has increased mental health issues - a new study from Cardiff and Swansea University found that half of respondents had clinically significant psychological distress, with 20% severely affected - higher than pre-COVID levels. Young adults, women and those who are economically disadvantaged are more likely to be affected. Further information.

How has Covid-19 impacted on care and support at home in Scotland? This report takes an in-depth look into the experience of users of care services and care workers during the first part of the coronavirus pandemic in Scotland. Amongst other things, the report notes that some people experienced a reduction in care services. Read the report here.

House of Lords Public Services Committee - Lessons from COVID-19 - the report includes a chapter on social care and calls for adequate funding for social care, equal visibility and priority with health care and effective data sharing between health and social care. Further information.

Commission on future of technology in social care - a new commission set up by ADASS and TEC Services Association will be investigating how digital systems can support adult social care going forwards. See news item.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236221

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New guidance on swab testing at homeNew guidance on swab testing at home

New guidance has been issued to inform people how to use their coronavirus (COVID-19) home test kit. The step-by-step guide, which relates to both adults and children, says:

  • Follow the right steps in the correct order.
  • Find your nearest Royal Mail priority postbox (5 to 10 mins). The guidance explains how to do this and says complete this task before you take the swab test.
  • Register test kit online (10 to 15 minutes). You must register to get your test results
  • Take swab sample (5 to 10 minutes)
  • Post your completed test kit. You must do this within 2 days of receiving your test kit, if possible. Completed tests must be posted no later than 1 hour before last collection. The guidance says what to do if you cannot get to a priority postbox.
  • Get test results by text and email (2 days).

Guidance on testing for coronavirus at home This is UK-wide.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236220

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Additional funding for small businessesAdditional funding for small businesses

Grants amounting to £2.2bn will be distributed to local authorities in England to further support businesses that have been forced to close during the lockdown.

Local authorities will also be able to give some discretionary grants.

Further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236219

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PHE publishes template letters that notify employers of shielded employeesPHE publishes template letters that notify employers of shielded employees

Public Health England has published online reference-only versions of letters from the government to people who are clinically extremely vulnerable, including accessible formats.

The letters are formal notification for employers that people cannot work outside their home until 2 December 2020.

Guidance, COVID-19: letters to clinically extremely vulnerable people, published 13 November 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236218

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Northern Ireland Executive agrees further action to curb COVID-19 infection ratesNorthern Ireland Executive agrees further action to curb COVID-19 infection rates

Following restrictions imposed on 16 October, the Northern Ireland Executive has agreed further action to curb COVID-19 infection rates:

  • Close contact services including driving instructors will reopen by appointment on 20 November;
  • Hospitality will reopen on a graduated basis, with unlicensed premises such as cafes and coffee shops opening on 20 November, with restricted opening hours to 8.00pm. This will not include the purchase or consumption of alcohol on such premises;
  • Support will be provided for mitigations to reduce risk within the hospitality sector, including improved ventilation and requirements for the recording of customer information for contact tracing purposes;
  • Pubs and bars will be permitted to sell sealed off sales on 20 November;
  • The remaining restrictions will be extended and end at midnight on 26 November, meaning all elements of hospitality including hotels can open on 27 November;

Statement on Executive decisions -12 November 2020 A new emotional public information campaign will launch to co-incide with the measures.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236216

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Blog: Good News Stories from UKHCA members, mid-Nov '20Blog: Good News Stories from UKHCA members, mid-Nov '20

Read our latest "Good news stories and innovation from the #homecare sector" blog featuring the great work by UKHCA members.


Featuring:

Care By Us
Bluebird Care Rother & Hastings
Right at Home Portsmouth
Caremark Tunbridge Wells, Tonbridge and Malling
Helping Hands Home Care Redditch
Home Instead - Basingstoke
Caring Connections
Carewatchhc
Ashridge Home Care

Read the full blog here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236217

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County councils in England warn of budget shortfalls and cuts aheadCounty councils in England warn of budget shortfalls and cuts ahead

A survey by the County Councils Network (CCN) predicts a £1.7bn funding shortfall in 2021/22 for their 36 councils in England. Only one in five (22%) was 'confident' they could deliver a balanced budget without 'dramatic' reductions to services.

Over half (56%) were planning to reduce access to care packages and/or introduce new charges for services 'moderately or severely', with 42% implementing the same severity of reductions to personal budgets and mental health services.

Autumn Budget survey


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236212

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HMRC webinars on importing from EU countries after transition endsHMRC webinars on importing from EU countries after transition ends

HMRC is running webinars for businesses that trade with other countries from Europe to help them get ready for the end of the UK transition period on 31 December 2020 and new rules from 1 January 2021.

The webinar covers import declarations, simplified declarations, supplementary declarations, preparing to make them, making import declarations without authorisation, and delayed import declarations. To register

The Health and Safety Executive has also issued guidance on getting ready for the end of transition. This includes the new UKCA marking which will begin to replace CE marking for goods being placed on the UK market.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236213

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Views sought on restricting movement of care home staffViews sought on restricting movement of care home staff

The Department of Health and Social Care is seeking views on plans to minimise the risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) infections by making residential and nursing care home providers in England restrict the movement of care staff between care homes and between care homes and other health and care settings.

There would be a limited exception to the requirement so care home providers can continue to ensure enough staff are available to care for service users safely

This consultation closes at midday on 23 November 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236222

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Lords report on 'critical juncture' for reform of UK's public servicesLords report on 'critical juncture' for reform of UK's public services

The House of Lords Public Service Committee has issued a report on the experience of the pandemic, calling for radical improvement in the way Government communicates and cooperates with local-level service providers on the delivery of effective public services. 

The report says there should be an analysis of whether services whould be best delivered centrally or locally, with local services and frontline workers given the resources and autonomy to innovate and improve the delivery of public services where they are the better option.

1st Report - A critical juncture for public services: lessons from COVID-19




Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236223

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Skills for Care webinars to support managersSkills for Care webinars to support managers

Skills for Care have launched two webinars - one on Wellbeing for managers and the other on Leading for Wellbeing, to help senior staff look themselves and support others.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236214

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Study finds people with learning disabilities had higher death rate from COVID-19Study finds people with learning disabilities had higher death rate from COVID-19

A Public Health England study has found in England the death rate of people with learning disabilities was up to 6 times higher from coronavirus during the first wave of the pandemic than the general population.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236215

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New Supported Living Guidance for WalesNew Supported Living Guidance for Wales

The Welsh Government have issued new guidance for people in supported living.

The guidance sets out visiting guidelines and information about how people living in supported living arrangements can form bubbles with other households. It also covers the need to assess risks for people working in supported living settings and provides guidance on testing and isolation in supported living settings.

The guidance is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236211

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GDPR - Right of access to informationGDPR - Right of access to information

The Information Commissioners Office (ICO) has published new guidance on subject access requests ("SARs"). Although the new guidance does not change the underlying law, it does provide some useful direction designed to simplify and clarify how to respond to SARs. Key points include:

Stopping the clock: The new guidance provides that the clock can be stopped whilst organisations are waiting for the requester to clarify their request. The deadline for responding extends for the same amount of time as the requester takes to provide the clarification.

Manifestly excessive: There is a broader definition of what constitutes a "manifestly excessive" request for information

Charging fees: The guidance has been updated in relation to what organisations can take into account when charging an admin fee for a manifestly unfounded or excessive request.

UKHCA Members are advised to make sure they are using the most up to date guidance when responding to requests for information.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236209

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Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act 2019: Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS)Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act 2019: Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS)

The Government has launched an LPS 'document collection page' on gov.uk. This brings together key documents on LPS, as they work towards implementation. This page will be updated as more information becomes available.

The page includes note of the last LPS steering group (Oct 13th), linked from the new collection page. This includes important information on the Government's plans for draft regulations, which will form part of the public consultation, planned for 2021.

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236207

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Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) guidance now availableCoronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) guidance now available

Updated guidance has been published on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), which has been extended to 31 March 2021 across the UK. There is a collection of guidance on eligibility and how the claim process operates.

Employers can start submitting claims from 11 November, for periods from 1 November, with all claims for November submitted by 14 December. The scheme, which will be reviewed in January, pays 80% of employees' usual wages for hours not worked, up to £2,500 per month. The employer and employee do not have to have used the scheme before to claim.

The guidance on which employees are eligible confirms that 'Employers can furlough employees who are clinically extremely vulnerable, at the highest risk of severe illness from coronavirus or off on long-term sick leave. It is up to employers to decide whether to furlough these employees' and describes how the CJRS scheme interacts with the SSP rebate scheme.

The updated shielding guidance is here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236208

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Have your say: Human Rights in Northern IrelandHave your say: Human Rights in Northern Ireland

A consultation on the creation of a Bill of Rights is being held by the Ad Hoc Committee on a Bill of Rights for Northern Ireland. The Committee wants to listen to what you think and taking on board how you feel about the creation of a Bill of Rights in Northern Ireland. The results of the consultation will provide valuable information to the Committee and help inform its forward work programme. The survey is completely anonymous and confidential.

Read more about the consultation and how to respond


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236206

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HMRC webinars on Furlough and Statutory Sick PayHMRC webinars on Furlough and Statutory Sick Pay

HMRC are providing webinars for employers on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough) and Statutory Sick Pay.

You can hear the latest information on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme which includes:

  • who can claim 
  • who you can claim for 
  • how to calculate what you can claim
  • how to make a claim, and 
  • a reminder of how to claim for periods up to 31 October.

HMRC will continue to update their webinars to reflect the latest information as it becomes available.

Register here

HMRC are also running monthly webinars on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme. Get the latest information on:

  • who can claim 
  • who you can claim for 
  • how to make a claim 
  • what you may be entitled to, and more.

Register here

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236205

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People with Down's Syndrome added to clinically extremely vulnerable adult listPeople with Down's Syndrome added to clinically extremely vulnerable adult list

The Government has added all adults who have Down's syndrome to the group of people who are considered to be clinically extremely vulnerable. This is the group who were previously advised to shield.

The Department of Health and Social Care has written to care providers to inform them of the addition of people with Down's Syndrome to the Shielding Patient List (SPL), to enable them to support individuals to follow the updated advice for this group.

Guidance on shielding and protecting people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable

Adding Down's syndrome to the clinically extremely vulnerable conditions list FAQs

Adding Down's syndrome to the clinically extremely vulnerable conditions list - Easy read FAQs


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236204

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Faster lateral flow tests to be distributed to over 50 councils in EnglandFaster lateral flow tests to be distributed to over 50 councils in England

An initial 600,000 batch of the faster lateral flow tests for COVID-19 is to be sent to over 50 directors of public health across England so they can prioritise allocation, based on the specific needs of their communities. Each will receive a batch of 10,000 antigen lateral flow devices as part of a new pilot to enable them to start testing priority groups.

The initial allocation will be followed by a weekly allocation of lateral flow antigen tests to upper tier councils equivalent to 10% of their local population.

The new testing technology is being used as part of asymptomatic, whole-city testing in Liverpool. The Government is also to offer these tests to devolved nations.

Government press release which includes the list of councils in England.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236203

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Research round-up - 9 NovemberResearch round-up - 9 November

The University of Birmingham have published a report on how care markets can support personalised outcomes. The report argues that local authorities using market shaping approaches that were more rule driven and demonstrated higher levels of control would be less likely to meet the personalisation aims of the Care Act 2014.

Healthwatch and the British Red Cross have published a report on people's experience of leaving hospital during COVID-19.

Research commissioned by the CQC suggests that people over the age of 55 are less likely to think that care has improved during the pandemic and are less likely to think a lower standard of care due to the impact of coronavirus is acceptable.

PSSRU undertook a survey of care workers to examine the impact of COVID-19 on care workers workload, wellbeing and ability to provide care safely.

A study from the University of York has not found a connection between social care spend and emergency hospital admission for falls for older adults with dementia.

The Kings Fund have updated their analysis of key issues facing social care. So have the House of Commons Library.

The Kings Fund have produced a diagram illustrating how to respond to stress for hospital staff during the pandemic. Obviously, this wasn't designed for a social care context but it may be of interest.

ADASS have called for an additional £480m to provide care at home and £1.2m to support unpaid carers this winter.

Equalities

Baroness Doreen Lawrence published a review of the impact of COVID-19 on Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission are launching an inquiry to scrutinise racial inequality of workers in health and social care.

Wales

The Older People's Commissioner for Wales is undertaking research to identify the gaps in services that prevent older people who experience abuse from getting the help that they need to keep them safe.

Carers Wales have released a report "Track the Act 5: Monitoring the 4th year of implementation of the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014". The report highlights the difficulties informal carers face getting access to advice and support and calls on the Welsh Government to recognise carers as the "third pillar of our health and social care system". Read the report here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236164

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Report shows widespread disruption to older people's care in the pandemicReport shows widespread disruption to older people's care in the pandemic

The Institute of Fiscal Studies has published a briefing on COVID-19 and disruptions to the health and social care of older people in England which reports disruptions to hospital care were widespread during the early stages of the pandemic.

A sixth of the over-50 population in England - that is 3.6 million individuals - had hospital treatment or an operation cancelled, with disruption greatest for those in poor health and living in deprived areas.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236199

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Age UK calls for urgent recognition of care workers' valuable contributionAge UK calls for urgent recognition of care workers' valuable contribution

A report by Age UK says care workers in England are entitled to feel under prepared, under-supported, under-protected and under-rewarded in the pandemic, compared with their counterparts in health. The care sector is under-staffed and has variable access to PPE. Staff are poorly paid and have been omitted from recent Government announcements about pay rises for public sector staff. Despite the trauma of the pandemic, care staff have inadequate access to mental health support and need similar access to their counterparts in the NHS.

The report concludes with a list of recommendations and call for urgent action to ensure the contributions, skills and commitment of care workers are recognised, including pay parity with health.

Age UK report: Time to bring our care workers in from the cold


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236200

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Updated guidance for prevention and management of pressure ulcers in ScotlandUpdated guidance for prevention and management of pressure ulcers in Scotland

Health Improvement Scotland have updated guidance on the prevention and management of pressure ulcers. The updated gudiance applies in a number of settings including care at home services.

The guidance is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236197

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New guidance on childcare bubblesNew guidance on childcare bubbles

New guidance has been issued on households wishing to form a childcare bubble. This allows friends or family from one other household to provide informal childcare.

The guidance is available here.

This is alongside the updated guidance on support bubbles, which allow single adult housholds to form a bubble with another household.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236198

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Blog: Good News Stories from UKHCA members, early Nov '20Blog: Good News Stories from UKHCA members, early Nov '20

Read our latest "Good news stories and innovation from the #homecare sector" blog featuring the great work by UKHCA members.

Featuring:
Home Instead Solihull
Helping Hands Home Care
Right at Home Stevenage, Letchworth and Hitchin
Bluebird Care East Devon
Caremark Worthing & Adur
Radfield Home Care Bexhill, Hastings & Battle
Unique Senior Care
SureCare Wolverhampton

Read the full blog


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236194

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Guest blog: How technology can help answer the CQC’s 5 key lines of enquiryGuest blog: How technology can help answer the CQC’s 5 key lines of enquiry

Guest blog by Unique IQ

The Care Quality Commission is a keen supporter of technology as a driver for improving standards of care. One of its strategic priorities is to encourage innovation; to not let regulation stand in the way of digital developments, providing they do not come at the expense of high quality, person-centred care.

So how can home care organisations harness technology to address the CQC’s five key lines of enquiry (KLOEs)? And use it to focus on delivering outstanding care?

Read the Guest Blog in full


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236195

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Government extends furlough scheme until end of March 2021Government extends furlough scheme until end of March 2021

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) is to run until the end of March 2021 across the UK, with employees receiving 80% of their current salary for hours not worked. Previously the scheme was extended until 2 December. Employers will only be asked to cover National Insurance and employer pension contributions for hours not worked, not workers' pay. The CJRS extension will be reviewed in January 2021. 

Further guidance is expected on these measures on 10 November. Government press release

In the meantime, Matt Wort of Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP has written a blog entitled Extended furlough; an upgrade or a refurb? on what we know so far about the extension of the furlough scheme.

The Chancellor has also announced an increase in the upfront guarantee of funding for the devolved administrations from £14 billion to £16 billion and an increase in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme with the third grant covering November to January calculated at 80% of average trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500, as well as other business support measures.

 

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236196

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Fast-track Barred List checksFast-track Barred List checks

Providing the fast-track barred list check is a key element in both the government's and DBS' response to COVID-19. In order for the service to be maintained, the DBS want to make sure that it is being used correctly and only for the purposes stated within the legislation and guidance. 

The DBS have published supplementary guidance which restates the types of roles that may be eligible and also draws attention to some roles which are not eligible. The DBS will be monitoring the use of COVID-19 applications to assess whether the amended guidance has been effective. Registered Bodies may be contacted to confirm the status of groups of applications, or individual applications. 

The DBS have confirmed that the COVID-related free-of-charge and emergency fast-track Barred List check services will remain in place for the time being. 

Read the new supplementary DBS guidance


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236193

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EHRC opens statutory inquiry into racial inequality of workers in health and social careEHRC opens statutory inquiry into racial inequality of workers in health and social care

The Equality and Human Rights Commission has opened a statutory inquiry into racial inequality of ethnic minority workers in lower paid roles in health and social care.

The inquiry will examine the experiences of workers from a range of ethnic minorities employed in lower-paid roles within the health and social care sectors across England, Scotland and Wales.

It will also look at pre-existing work-related factors, such as workplace conditions, policies and training that may have contributed to their risk of COVID-19.

A call for evidence is expected in coming weeks, and details of the external Advisory Panel that will help to guide the work.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236201

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Quick guide on COVID-19 recovery care and support at homeQuick guide on COVID-19 recovery care and support at home

A quick guide has been published by the Social Care Institute for Excellence with extensive input from UKHCA, to help homecare workers provide care and support to people who have left hospital after having COVID-19.

You can find it here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236192

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Shielding guidance issued ahead of national restrictionsShielding guidance issued ahead of national restrictions

The Department of Health and Social Care has published updated guidance on shielding people who are clinically extremely vulnerable, in advance of the national restrictions that apply to everyone in England from 5 November to 2 December 2020.

The guidance is not as strict as previous shielding guidance, as people are allowed out for limited purposes, but it does say people who are clinically extremely vulnerable should not go to work during the period of national restrictions, if they cannot work from home. The guidance outlines the support available to those affected.

Guidance, COVID-19: guidance on shielding and protecting people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable, updated 4 November 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236191

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New measures and £112 million to support sector over winterNew measures and £112 million to support sector over winter

The Scottish Government has published a plan outlining steps to prepare and support Scotland's social care sector through the winter.

The Adult Social Care Winter Preparedness Plan is backed by an additional £112 million in funding to support social care users in residential, community and home settings, and the people who provide that care, including unpaid carers.

The plan lists a number of actions; those most directly relevant to homecare include:

  • expanded testing access for the care at home workforce and designated visitors as soon as the technology and capacity allows
  • NHS National Services Scotland to continue to provide free of charge top-up and emergency provision of PPE to ensure staff, unpaid carers, and Social Care Personal Assistants have the PPE they need until at least the end of March 2021
  • prioritise a 'home first' approach to care, supporting people to stay home or in a homely setting with maximum independence for as long as possible
  • £50 million for the Social Care Staff Support Fund and winter sustainability funding, through to the end of March 2021.

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236190

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New Quality Framework in ScotlandNew Quality Framework in Scotland

The Care Inspectorate have published a new Quality Framework for support services, including care at home services. This is intended to enable services to self-evaluate their own performance.

You can find out more here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236188

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Whole city testing pilot in LiverpoolWhole city testing pilot in Liverpool

Liverpool will be undertaking a whole city testing pilot, where everyone living or working in Liverpool will be offered testing whether or not they have symptoms.

Existing swab tests will be combiend with 'lateral flow tests' which can provide rapid results to test residents and identify and isolate asymptomatic cases to break chains of transmission.

Liverpool City Council, which will be supported by military personnel in delivering the logistics of the task, will be setting out how to access testing later this week.

Further information available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236189

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Infection Control Fund Round 2 guidance updatedInfection Control Fund Round 2 guidance updated

The Department of Health and Social Care's Guidance on Adult Social Care Infection Control Fund: round 2 has been updated to explain the interaction of the Fund with payments made under the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme, and the reporting conditions that apply to community care providers, among other changes.

Guidance Adult Social Care Fund Round 2


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236187

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UKHCA calls on the Government to address their new immigration systemUKHCA calls on the Government to address their new immigration system

UKHCA, along with eight other organisations, are calling on the Government to address their new immigration system, including:

* Expanding the shortage occupation list

* Reducing the salary threshold to the living wage

* Exempting employers from the immigration skills charge

Link to the full briefing here

Commenting on the briefing, UKHCA's Policy Director Colin Angel said:

“Government has recently rejected the Migration Advisory Committee’s recommendations about the Shortage Occupation List, at least for the foreseeable future. Although the shortage list would have had limited application for many social care employers, some would have found it extremely helpful in sourcing candidates from outside the UK for hard-to-fill roles, including live-in homecare.

“From January 2021, social care employers face a sudden restriction requiring them to recruit from the domestic workforce. The recommendations from IPPR are an important contribution to how the UK’s migration system could work more effectively in sectors which are known to face recruitment challenges. Government needs to consider the recommendations thoroughly.”


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236185

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Flu vaccinations for care workers: Briefing from the Care Provider AllianceFlu vaccinations for care workers: Briefing from the Care Provider Alliance

This briefing from the Care Provider Alliance (of whom UKHCA are members) aims to support care managers, occupational health leads, team leaders and care service owners to maximise take up of the flu vaccine by their eligible staff.

It covers both residential and community-based services that are regulated by the Care Quality Commission. Unregulated services may also find the briefing valuable.

The briefing provides examples of how to arrange occupational health schemes, or access the NHS complementary scheme, as well as how to monitor and report on progress. It includes a template letter to support identification as a care worker.

Flu vaccinations for care workers: CPA briefing 29 October 2020 CPA


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236186

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Statutory sick pay enhancement scheme for care workers in WalesStatutory sick pay enhancement scheme for care workers in Wales

Further details have been released on the Statutory Sick Pay enhancement for care workers announced in Wales last week.

Read more here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236184

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Restrictions in Wales following 9 NovemberRestrictions in Wales following 9 November

The First Minister has confirmed that new nation-wide restrictions will be introduced in Wales following the end of the fire-break lockdown on 9 November.

Here are some of the key points:

  • 2 households will be able to join together to form a bubble/extended household and meet each other inside.
  • It will be possible to meet indoors in other hospitality settings, but this is being given further consideration in light of the lockdown in England.
  • Businesses and places of worship will reopen on 9 November, as will schools.
  • People will still be asked to work from home where possible.
  • Whilst there will be no travel restrictions inside Wales, no travel outside Wales will be permitted without reasonable excuse.

See the announcement here.

Written statement

Press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236183

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Need for signatures on prescriptions, dental and ophthalmic forms suspendedNeed for signatures on prescriptions, dental and ophthalmic forms suspended

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has approved a temporary measure in England to help limit the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19) by suspending the need for patients to sign prescription, dental and ophthalmic forms for a period of 5 months to 31 March 2021.

Decision


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236181

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Cardiff University to lead a study into the impact of COVID-19 on the health of care workersCardiff University to lead a study into the impact of COVID-19 on the health of care workers

Cardiff University will be working with Public Health Wales, Swansea University and Social Care Wales to establish the COVID-19 risk to care workers in Wales. The 18 month study will look at suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19, trends in other respiratory illnesses and mental health.

Click here to find out more.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236182

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New national restrictions for four weeks from 5 NovemberNew national restrictions for four weeks from 5 November

The Prime Minister has announced new national restrictions in England from 5 November to 2 December 2020 to address the rapidly rising number of COVID-19 infections. These restrictions:

- Require people to stay at home, except for specific purposes.
- Prevent gatherings with people they do not live with, except for specific purposes.
- Close certain businesses and venues.

Local COVID-alert levels continue to apply until 5 November and may resume from 3 December, depending on the data. The proposed restrictions will be presented to Parliament for a vote on 4 November.

Guidance, New National Restrictions from 5 November, published 31 October 2020.

Prime Minister’s speech Government press release

The furlough scheme will be extended for the month of November, with eligible UK businesses paying only National Insurance and Pensions contributions for their staff, who will be paid at least 80% of their salary up to £2500 a month. The Job Support Scheme has been postponed and business grants will be available to help eligible businesses in England.

News story - Furlough Scheme Extended and Further Economic Support announced


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236180

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New Skills for Care Digital Learning moduleNew Skills for Care Digital Learning module

Skills for care have developed a new digital learning module to support managers and leaders to carry out learning reviews.

Find out more.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236176

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Financial support for care workers and people on low income to self-isolate in WalesFinancial support for care workers and people on low income to self-isolate in Wales

Today (30 October) the First Minister has announced that two new schemes will be introduced to support people to self isolate.

One scheme will provide £500 isolation payments to those on a low income who are unable to work because they have been asked to self-isolate by the NHS Wales Test Trace Protect Service. This is available to people who are in receipt of Universal Credit or another qualifying benefit.

The second scheme is a Statutory Sick Pay enhancement for social care workers. This will be available from 1 November 2020 - 31 March 2021. This will top careworkers up to their full pay if they are asked to self-isolate because they or someone in their household has coronavirus, or because they have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Wales Test Trace Protect.

Self isolating will become a legal requirement.

We anticipate further detail about how to access the schemes.

Read the announcement here.

In an announcement made at lunch time the First Minister also indicated that there was unlikely to be a return to local lockdowns after 9 Novermber. The restrictions that will be on a Wales-wide basis following the fire-break lockdown are expected to be announced on 2 November (watch the announcement here).


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236177

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Outreach workers to support Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people in WalesOutreach workers to support Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people in Wales

The NHS in Wales will be recruiting outreach workers to support Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people during the pandemic given the disparate effect of coronavirus. Read more.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236178

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Flu vaccine for over 65s - fish allergyFlu vaccine for over 65s - fish allergy

There is information circulating about a small risk that over 65s with a severe fish allergy may be at risk of an allergic reaction to one of the flu vaccines that contains squalene - a substance that is extracted from refined fish oil. People over 65 who have a fish allergy should discuss this with a health professional and may be offered an alternative vaccine. Further information is available on page 21 of this document.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236179

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Uber Eats and Care Provider Alliance discounts for care workersUber Eats and Care Provider Alliance discounts for care workers

The Care Provider Alliance, of which UKHCA are members, has partnered with Uber Eats to provide discounts on food deliveries for social care staff during the coronavirus outbreak.

Care providers are encouraged to share information with their staff workers, inviting them to join the CPA 10% DISCOUNT Uber Eats account

The Uber Eats app connects users with a broad range of local restaurants and food, so they can order from the full menus of their local favourites whenever they want and get them delivered to their door.

By connecting a personal Uber Eats account to Uber Eats for Business, care workers will get access to exclusive discounts on their orders, free delivery for meals and more.

Find out more here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236175

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Coronavirus business loan schemes to close end of NovemberCoronavirus business loan schemes to close end of November

Several business loan schemes established to support businesses through the pandemic will close to new applications after 30 November. This inlcudes:


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236174

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MPs seek evidence on Government's approach to funding local governmentMPs seek evidence on Government's approach to funding local government

In a new inquiry, the House of Commons Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee is inviting evidence on:

  • The approach the Government should take to local government funding in England as part of the 2020 Spending Review and what the key features of that settlement should be.
  • The current financial situation of councils, how this has affected their ability to deliver services and the demand for services, including Adult Social Care.
  • What the financial challenges facing councils are as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, including lost income and local tax losses.
  • What the impact is of another one-year spending review and a further delay to a multi-year settlement and the Fair Funding Review.

Deadline is Friday 27 November 2020.

More on "MPs seek evidence on Government's approach to funding local government" Opens in new window


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236172

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Independent Review of Adult Social Care - deadline for submissions 6 November 2020Independent Review of Adult Social Care - deadline for submissions 6 November 2020

A reminder the Scottish Government's Independent Review of Adult Social Care's open invitation to submit views, papers and evidence on reform of adult social care in Scotland closes on 6 November 2020.

Contributors are invited to send these to: secretariat.adultsocialcarereview@gov.scot

The Review is able to accept submissions in non-written formats, for example digitally, but contributors are asked to contact the secretariat using the above email address first.

More information on engagement organised by the Alliance and the Review's engagement programme

More on "Independent Review of Adult Social Care - deadline for submissions 6 November 2020" Opens in new window


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236173

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Restriction levels announced for Scottish regionsRestriction levels announced for Scottish regions

Following the announcement of a five level restriction system last week, the Scottish Government have now released a list of which regions will be categorised into which levels - available here.

The restrictions will come into force on 2 November 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236170

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No change to CQC fees in 2021/22No change to CQC fees in 2021/22

The CQC fees scheme, which covers all costs of regulation, including registration, monitoring and inspection, will not change in 2021/22.

This means that, for most providers, their fees will remain the same as in 2019/20 and 2020/21, providing their registration or size does not change.

Since the CQC fees scheme will remain the same in 2021/22 as they were this year, you can find the fees scheme, guidance and calculator here. NHS trusts, NHS GPs and community social care providers may see a small change to their fees from April 2021 (up or down), because each provider’s fee is calculated by looking at their size against the total size of the sector, both of which change year-on-year. However, the total fees collected for each sector will not change.

CQC said:

"By keeping our fees scheme unchanged, providers can benefit from a known fee when setting budgets. We know this is a particularly challenging and uncertain period for providers across health and social care and we will continue to do all we can to support those delivering care at this time."
 
Commenting on the news, UKHCA's Policy Director Colin Angel said:

"A freeze on CQC fees is welcome at a time when providers have faced significant cost increases as a result of coronavirus. However, providers will reasonably ask why fees have not been reduced when CQC’s inspection activity (and therefore costs) has been significantly curtailed, and looks like it will be well into next year."


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236171

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NHS app updateNHS app update

The NHS app is being updated. Amongst other things, the latest update will improve the accuracy with which the app can measure distance.

Read more.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236169

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Flu vaccination - guidance for social care workersFlu vaccination - guidance for social care workers

Government guidance for flu vaccination in England has been updated and confirms that staff working for a registered domiciliary care provider who are directly involved in the care of service users are eligible for a free flu vaccination.

The guidance stresses the importance of reducing flu while coronavirus (COVID-19) is still in circulation. Given that symptoms for flu and COVID are very similar, widespread vaccination against flu will make it easier to target COVID-19 testing and avoid disruption to care services.

Staff do not need to show their ID at their GP or pharmacy to obtain a vaccination, however, giving careworkers a letter saying they are an adult social care worker will help to make the process as easy as possible.

Flu vaccination in Scotland

Flu vaccination in Wales

Flu vaccination in Northern Ireland

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236168

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Prevention and Management of Pressure Ulcers: Standards October 2020Prevention and Management of Pressure Ulcers: Standards October 2020

The Care Inspectorate is supporting the publication of the updated standards for prevention and management of pressure ulcers, with Healthcare Improvement Scotland. 

These standards will replace the current clinical standards on prevention and management of pressure ulcers published by Healthcare Improvement Scotland in 2016 and incorporate advice contained in the (now withdrawn) 2009 Quality Improvement Scotland best practice statement.

The standards apply to:

  • any person at risk of developing, or identified with, pressure ulcers regardless of age (including babies and children)
  • services and organisations responsible for pressure ulcer care across health and social care.

ÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿ


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236167

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Check if you can claim back Statutory Sick Pay paid to employees due to coronavirus (COVID-19)Check if you can claim back Statutory Sick Pay paid to employees due to coronavirus (COVID-19)

Government has updated its guidance on the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme

Who can use the scheme has been updated so employers can ask for a 'shielding note' or a letter from the employee's doctor or health authority advising them to shield because they're at high risk of severe illness from coronavirus.

Read the updated guidance


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236165

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Covid - 19 new 'firebreak' restrictions throughout WalesCovid - 19 new 'firebreak' restrictions throughout Wales

Welsh Ministers have agreed a time limited 'firebreak' where restrictions come into force across Wales from Friday 23 October until Monday 9 November to coincide with half term and university reading weeks.

During the period, people in Wales are required to stay at home unless they have a reasonable excuse, certain businesses are required to close, and people must work from home if it is reasonable and practicable to do so. People resident outside Wales are not able to enter or remain in Wales without a reasonable excuse. Primary schools, special schools, education other than at school (EOTAS) provision and childcare services will remain open.

Read the summary of the effects of coronavirus restrictions


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236166

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Guidance issued on Kickstart job placement schemeGuidance issued on Kickstart job placement scheme

Guidance has been issued for employers looking to create job placements for young people, and apply for funding as part of the Kickstart Scheme. The scheme provides funding to create new job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment. 

Kickstart scheme for 30 or more job placements

A Kickstart Scheme application must be for a minimum of 30 job placements. If a single employer cannot provide this, they can apply via a Kickstart gateway. The scheme applies in England, Scotland and Wales.

Kickstart Scheme for 29 or fewer placements


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236163

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Report describes hospital discharge difficulties in the pandemicReport describes hospital discharge difficulties in the pandemic

Healthwatch England and the British Red Cross have published 590 people's stories of leaving hospital during COVID-19 which concludes the 'discharge to assess' model could work nationally, but it relies on people's whole needs being assessed and addressed in the community, and this often does not happen in practice.

The report noted difficulties with follow-up visits and assessments that didn't happen, follow-up contact that wasn't made, patients not being prepared for discharge, lack of communication, discharges at night with little support, and delays in Covid-19 testing which meant people were discharged into the community without their results.

However, the benefits of a national approach to discharge and better joined up working between health and social care were noted.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236162

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Video: UKHCA's CEO in CoProduce Care panelVideo: UKHCA's CEO in CoProduce Care panel

UKHCA's CEO Dr Jane Townson recently took part in a Coproduce Care event featuring the CQC's Kate Terroni.

You can watch the panel discussion here

The main topic of discussion was the CQC's State of Care report for 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236160

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Northern Ireland: additional support if there is a water or electricity supply disruptionNorthern Ireland: additional support if there is a water or electricity supply disruption

NI Water and NIE Networks have care registers which allow older and disabled people to receive additional support if there is an interruption in services.

Anyone interested in being on those registers can find out more here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236158

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New five level plan for COVID-19 restrictions in ScotlandNew five level plan for COVID-19 restrictions in Scotland

The First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, announced a new five level plan for COVID-19 for Scotland today.

Whilst levels 1, 2 and 3 are broadly similar to those announced for England last week, there is also a level 0 (similar to the lower restriction levels set out in the summer) and a level 4 (which represents a more substantial lockdown closer to what was seen in spring).

Which regions are allocated to which level has yet to be decided and is being discussed with local public health leads. It is anticipated the framework will come into effect on 2 November 2020.

The Strategy also states an intention to publish a Winter Plan for Adult Social Care and an intention to meet additional PPE costs.

Press release

Strategic framework


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236157

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Clocks are changing - don't lose sleepClocks are changing - don't lose sleep

Clocks go back on the 25th October meaning an extra hour in bed but this change can impact your sleep schedule. Social Care staff have free access to Sleepio, a clinically-proven digital CBT programme for insomnia.

More information via the Care Provider Alliance


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236156

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Research roundup 23 October - use of restraint, equality and the pressure on unpaid carersResearch roundup 23 October - use of restraint, equality and the pressure on unpaid carers

- The Equality and Human Rights Commission published a report on the impact of the pandemic, highlighting the impacts on older and disabled people and care workers.

- Carers UK have published a new report 'Caring behind closed doors' on the impact of coronavirus on unpaid carers in the UK. 81% of unpaid carers say they are providing more care since the start of the pandemic.

- IPPR and the Runnymede Trust published a report on ethnic inequalities in COVID-19 calling for action to be taken to mitigate differences in outcomes between ethnic groups.

- There is a new CQC report on the use of restraint, segregation and seclusion for people with learning disability or autism who may also have a mental health condition. The report calls for a reduction in restrictive practices and an increase in availability of community based support.

- The Minister for Equalities has also published a quarterly update on progress to address COVID-19 related health inequalities.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236138

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Wales launch ten year workforce strategyWales launch ten year workforce strategy

Health Education and Improvement Wales and Social Care Wales have jointly launched a 10 year workforce strategy called "A Healthier Wales: Our Workforce Strategy for Health and Social Care".

The high level strategic framework comprises 32 actions including: developing a workforce plan for domiciliary care; an increased focus on digital skills; a values based induction programme and "work towards fair reward and recognition across the health and social care workforce."

You can read the announcement here.

The strategy is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236150

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Advice for those previously shielding in WalesAdvice for those previously shielding in Wales

The Chief Medical Officer for Wales has issued a new letter to those providing advice to those who were previously shielding in Wales.

The letter does not advise a return to shielding but provides advice on how to reduce risks.

The letter is available here.

You can sign up for updates by text message here about shielding.

The FAQs have also been updated.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236153

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Chancellor increases support for businessesChancellor increases support for businesses

The Chancellor has further amended the support available to businesses in the pandemic.

Chancellor's statement to the House - Plan For Jobs

Plan for Jobs press release

Local authorities in England will provide businesses impacted by Tier 2 restrictions, even if they aren't legally closed, with direct cash grants. LAs will have discretion but extra funding should give those business premises in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors a direct grant of up to £2,100 for each month Tier 2 restrictions apply. The scheme is retrospective to August 2020.

The Job Support Scheme is being made more generous for UK employers:

  • Employees now have to work only 20% of their hours, not 33%.
  • The employer contribution for hours not worked will be 5%, not be 33%.
  • The scheme will apply to eligible businesses in all alert levels, so businesses that are not closed but face higher restrictions, as well as the devolved nations, will be able to access greater support.

Policy paper, The Job Support Scheme

The next round of the self-employed income support scheme for the UK will increase from 20% to 40% of people's incomes from November 2020, increasing the maximum grant to £3,750.

Policy paper, Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Grant Extension


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236154

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Additional flu vaccines authorised for use in the UKAdditional flu vaccines authorised for use in the UK

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has temporarily authorised a flu vaccine used in the USA called Flublok for use in the UK, to help ensure as many people as possible are vaccinated during the pandemic.

DHSC say millions of extra flu vaccines will soon be available. All vaccines, including Flublok, undergo three stages of clinical trials and are assessed by the regulator for safety, effectiveness and quality before they are given to patients.

Government press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236151

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PHE AGP pilot programmePHE AGP pilot programme

PHE is planning a short pilot/evaluation programme on the management of AGPs (aerosol-generating procedures) in non-acute settings.
 
It is an evaluation of whether the system would work to support their draft proposal e.g. how to access tests, how to get results, what if the results are unavailable/delayed, PPE availability etc.

PHE are looking for potential domiciliary care organisations to participate.
 
If you have any queries or would like to participate please email Liz.Stokle@phe.gov.uk


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236152

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Care providers can now order free CARE badges for their staffCare providers can now order free CARE badges for their staff

Care providers in England can now order free CARE badges for their staff from an online ordering service.

The Department of Health and Social Care is providing free badges to staff employed across the adult social care sector to recognise their critical work, particularly during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Employers should click on Order now to go to APS's ordering site (ADS are delivering the badges on behalf of DHSC).

DHSC say care providers should:

  • Order one CARE badge per current staff member.
  • Ensure one person orders CARE badges for their entire organisation, including multiple locations, so they can be distributed internally.

More information on care badges and ordering

DHSC has also issued guidance on using the CARE brand, with downloadable logos and brand guidelines explaining who can use the CARE identity and how it should be applied.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236149

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Health and Social Care Committee publish report on social care funding and workforceHealth and Social Care Committee publish report on social care funding and workforce

The Health and Social Care Committee have published a report on social care funding and workforce.

The key recommendation is for the Government to use the spending review to invest £7bn more per year in adult social care by 2023/24.

UKHCA's CEO Jane Townson tweeted:

"Good to see the 21 conclusions & recommendations on adult social care funding & workforce from the Committee and that Ukhca and Agincare's evidence on homecare was quoted. Fingers crossed for an extra £7bn p.a. to help fairer access to care for people & proper valuing of careworkers."

Full report here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236147

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Guest Blog: The Role of Remote Monitoring in Supporting Isolated and Shielding Older PeopleGuest Blog: The Role of Remote Monitoring in Supporting Isolated and Shielding Older People

UKHCA's latest guest blog comes from Commercial members Anthropos entitled: "The Role of Remote Monitoring in Supporting Isolated and Shielding Older People."

Read it in full here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236148

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Spending review to be one year rather than long-termSpending review to be one year rather than long-term

As expected, the Chancellor has dropped plans for a long-term Comprehensive Spending Review, so the Government can prioritise the response to Covid-19.

Instead there will be a one-year Spending Review later in November to set departmental resource and capital budgets for 2021-22, and Devolved Administration's block grants.

Treasury announcement


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236145

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New film highlights impact of long-COVID on individualsNew film highlights impact of long-COVID on individuals

A film has been released by the Department of Health and Social Care featuring the stories of 4 people, including one aged 22, who are living with the long-term effects of coronavirus.

The symptoms include fatigue, protracted loss of taste or smell, respiratory and cardiovascular symptoms and mental health problems.

A study from King's College London shows one in 20 people with COVID-19 are likely to have symptoms for 8 weeks or more, with long COVID affecting around 10% of 18 to 49 year olds.

More about the film, which is part of the wider Hands, Face, Space campaign in England.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236144

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Adult social care sector contributes £41.2 billion a year to England's economyAdult social care sector contributes £41.2 billion a year to England's economy

Skills for Care's state of the adult social care sector and workforce in England report, issued today, estimates that the adult social care sector contributes £41.2 billion per annum to the economy in England. Eighty five percent of care organisations are SMEs with fewer than 50 employees.

The greatest number of social care jobs are in the domiciliary care sector, which comprises 43% of the overall adult social care workforce.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236143

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MPs hear evidence of how homecare workers are coping in the pandemicMPs hear evidence of how homecare workers are coping in the pandemic

Jo Da Siva, careworker at UKHCA members Agincare, gave powerful evidence to yesterday's meeting of the Health and Social Care Committee on the pressures facing the homecare workforce in the pandemic.

Jo said homecare workers would welcome greater recognition of the vital role they play supporting people at home, and the skill they have shown, in what have been very difficult circumstances. They would like parity with other people, like those working in health.

The Committee is investigating workforce burnout and resilience in the NHS and social care.

Parliament Live Recording


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UKHCA News ID: 236141

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Guidance issued on Greater Manchester restrictions effective from 23 OctoberGuidance issued on Greater Manchester restrictions effective from 23 October

Guidance has been issued on the additional restrictions for Greater Manchester which come into effect from Friday 23 October, when the local COVID alert level changes to very high.

The guidance covers the affected areas, businesses and venues, and financial support, though elements of this are still being negotiated with Government.

Health and Social Care Secretary's Statement

Prime Minister's statement

South Yorkshire changes from local COVID alert level high to very high from 00.01 on Saturday 24 October. More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236142

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HSE carrying out spot checks on businessesHSE carrying out spot checks on businesses

The Health and Safety Executive is carrying out spot checks and inspections on all types of businesses to ensure they are COVID-secure.

HSE webpage which includes a short video explaining how HSE's spot inspections will work.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236146

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Consultation on national plan and support fund for unpaid carers in WalesConsultation on national plan and support fund for unpaid carers in Wales

Today the Welsh Government announced a new Carers Support Fund of £1m that could see unpaid carers receive grants of up to £300.

They have also released a consultation on a new national plan for unpaid carers in Wales.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236139

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New resources explain local alert levels in EnglandNew resources explain local alert levels in England

Public Health England has produced a range of downloadable resources to help explain the local COVID alert levels in England, and what it means to be in a area with medium, high and very high alert levels.

Posters and digital resources


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UKHCA News ID: 236136

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First Minister announces 'fire-break' for WalesFirst Minister announces 'fire-break' for Wales

First Minister Mark Drakeford has announced there will be a short, sharp a 'fire-break' in Wales from 6pm on Friday 23 October 2020, ending on Monday 9 November, to tackle rising rates of COVID-19.

This will apply to everyone living in Wales and will replace the local restrictions which are in force in some parts of the country.

The restrictions will be similar to the national lockdown that took place earlier this year.

There will be a nearly £300 million support package for businesses in Wales, to complement wage-support schemes available from the UK government.

Announcement FAQs


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Guidance issued on asking a minister a question about coronavirusGuidance issued on asking a minister a question about coronavirus

The Cabinet Office has issued short guidance on asking a minister a question about coronavirus and how to submit a question.

The guidance says an independent polling organisation chooses the questions. The minister does not see the question in advance and the government is not involved in choosing questions.

If a question is chosen, the minister will answer it during an event broadcast to the public.

Guidance


Announcement posted on:

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Changes to the Human Medicines Regulations to support the rollout of COVID-19 and flu vaccinesChanges to the Human Medicines Regulations to support the rollout of COVID-19 and flu vaccines

The Government is to take forward changes it proposed to the Human Medicines Regulations to support the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines. Following a recent consultation, it has made a few changes including providing in the new national protocol for supervision of the wider range of personnel who will legally be able to administer vaccines.

Government response to consultation


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COVID-19 Autumn 2020: Overview of key developments for employersCOVID-19 Autumn 2020: Overview of key developments for employers

Anthony Collins Solicitors have produced FAQs on recent guidance and issues ranging from employee testing to the new Job Support Scheme.


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UKHCA News ID: 236128

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CQC publishes State of Care reportCQC publishes State of Care report

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has published its annual “The State of Health Care and Adult Social Care in England 2019/20.”

Due to the impact of COVID-19, this year’s report has a new narrative format with a greater emphasis on ratings and a focus on the benefits of systems’ working but with less analysis and recommendations than in previous years.

Although 85 per cent of providers have achieved a good or outstanding CQC rating despite the huge pressures they have faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, the pandemic has exacerbated intrinsic weaknesses within social care systems and highlighted inequalities, not least continued underfunding and increasing levels of unmet need, particularly in the State-funded market.

UKHCA has consistently argued for a sustainable funding settlement for the homecare sector and regulatory over-sight of local authorities’ commissioning practices.

Commenting on the report, UKHCA’s Policy Director, Colin Angel, said:
 
CQC’s State of Care report provides an important reminder to Government that the social care sector was in a fragile state before the pandemic. None of the causes have been resolved in the meantime. The call for a new deal for the adult social care workforce is one which is supported by employers and comes at a point where Government is making decisions about future public spending.
 
“While recognising that producing this year’s State of Care report must have been challenging to write, it would have been preferable to have had more analysis and recommendations, rather than the lengthy narrative approach adopted in this year’s report. We continue to urge Government to amend CQC’s role. This will ensure that it can report and comment far more extensively on the commissioning of services, to present a properly rounded picture of how care systems support people in their local communities.”

Ends

Notes for Editors
1. United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) is the professional association for more than 2,100 domiciliary care providers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
2. As a member-led professional association, UKHCA’s purpose is to enable a strong, sustainable, innovative and person-led homecare sector to flourish. We represent and support our members so that people can live well and independently at home. UKHCA’s members agree to abide by the Association’s Code of Practice, which can be found at www.ukhca.co.uk/codeofpractice.aspx.
3. Fourteen of UKHCA’s non-executive directors are elected by the membership of the association and serve for a period of three years. The Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Honorary Secretary are elected by the non-executive directors from within their number. The Association’s Chief Executive and Corporate Services Director are also non-executive directors.
4. For further information please contact:

Matthew Kiernan, Press Officer
United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd
Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH

Telephone: 020 8661 8165
Mobile: 07393 012 113
E-mail: media@ukhca.co.uk
Website: www.ukhca.co.uk
Twitter: @ukhca

Registered in England, No. 3083104.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236127

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CQC published annual State of Care ReportCQC published annual State of Care Report

CQC has published its annual State of Care report today which considers the state of care before COVID-19, the impact of COVID-19 and what happens next. The Commission has also looked at the way sectors and providers have worked together locally, especially in response to COVID-19.

Ian Trenholm, CQC's Chief Executive, said:

"COVID-19 is magnifying inequalities across the health and care system - a seismic upheaval which has disproportionately affected some more than others and risks turning fault lines into chasms. As we adjust to a COVID-19 age, the focus must be on shaping a fairer health and care system - both for people who use services, and for those who work in them."


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236125

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UKHCA appoints new board members and officersUKHCA appoints new board members and officers

Five new non-executive directors have been elected by members to the Board of United Kingdom Homecare Association, representing a diverse range of providers and geographies across the homecare sector.

The new representatives bring the Association’s board to its full-strength of 14 elected non-executive directors. At the same time, the organisation also thanks others leaving the board at the end of their term of office.

At the Association’s annual general meeting, held on 14 October 2020, UKHCA’s membership elected the following to the board:

• Mario Abajo Menguez, Chief Executive Officer, Clece Care Services Ltd, representing UKHCA members with between four to twenty branches in England
• Nancy Cross, Director, Gofal Ystwyth Care Ltd, representing UKHCA members in Wales
• Carolanne Mainland, Director of Operations, Highland Home Carers Ltd, representing UKHCA members in Scotland
• Polly Munyeza, Director and Registered Manager, Support Unlimited UK Ltd, representing UKHCA members with 3 branches or fewer
• Martin Ross, Director of Care at Home, Care South, representing UKHCA members with 3 branches or fewer

Standing down from the board, with the Association’s warmest thanks for their work and support for UKHCA over recent years were:
• Roger Booker, UKHCA’s Vice-Chair
• David Chalk, UKHCA’s Honorary Secretary
• Lynn James, representing providers in England with three or fewer branches
• Gavin Stedman-Bryce, representing providers in Scotland

At the Association’s board meeting on the following day, 15 October 2020, the following appointments were made from the Association’s non-executive directors:
• Max Wurr, Director of Policy and Communications, City & County Healthcare Group, appointed UKHCA’s vice-chair
• Lesley Megarity, Chief Executive Officer, Domestic Care Group, appointed UKHCA’s Honorary Secretary

Dominique Kent continues to chair the Association and Mike Smith remains UKHCA’s Treasurer.

UKHCA’s Chair, Dominique Kent, said:

“It is a pleasure to welcome practising homecare providers to represent the sector across the UK. As a national professional association, UKHCA’s role is to provide strong leadership. It is essential that our strategic direction and governance is developed and overseen by members elected from within the diverse experience and knowledge of our membership.

“We are deeply grateful to all the homecare providers who devote their time and expertise to support the work of the Board and contribute to the future development of the organisation. I am particularly grateful for the contribution made by our colleagues standing down at the end of their periods of office this year.

“Whilst only five places were available for election this year, we received many more nominations for the board. We are delighted by the level of interest and would also like to thank each of the nominees for their desire to shape the future of the Association. We believe that this shows the high level of engagement from our membership with their national professional association. We are committed to enabling all our members to contribute to a strong, sustainable, innovative and person-led homecare sector to flourish, so people can live safely and well at home.”

Ends.
Notes for Editors
1. United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) is the professional association for more than 2,100 domiciliary care providers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
2. As a member-led professional association, UKHCA’s purpose is to enable a strong, sustainable, innovative and person-led homecare sector to flourish. We represent and support our members so that people can live well and independently at home. UKHCA’s members agree to abide by the Association’s Code of Practice, which can be found at www.ukhca.co.uk/codeofpractice.aspx.
3. Fourteen of UKHCA’s non-executive directors are elected by the membership of the association and serve for a period of three years. The Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Honorary Secretary are elected by the non-executive directors from within their number. The Association’s Chief Executive and Corporate Services Director are also non-executive directors.
4. For further information please contact:

Matthew Kiernan, Press Officer
United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd
Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH

Telephone: 020 8661 8165
Mobile: 07393 012 113
E-mail: media@ukhca.co.uk
Website: www.ukhca.co.uk
Twitter: @ukhca

Registered in England, No. 3083104.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236126

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PPE portal: how to order COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE)PPE portal: how to order COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE)

DHSC has provided updated advice on the PPE Portal, including instructions and infographic on getting free PPE.

Eligible health and social care providers can order PPE through the portal to meet the increased need that has arisen as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Orders will be delivered by Royal Mail within 5 days.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236123

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COVID support for Welsh businesses - Job Support Scheme expandedCOVID support for Welsh businesses - Job Support Scheme expanded

Welsh Secretary welcomes the expansion of the UK Government's Job Support Scheme.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236124

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UKHCA's CEO Jane Townson joins new commissionUKHCA's CEO Jane Townson joins new commission

UKHCA's CEO Jane Townson will be on the new Commission on the Role of Housing in the Future of Care and Support. It will be led the Social Care Institute for Excellence.

More here


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UKHCA News ID: 236120

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Travel restrictions for UK visitors to WalesTravel restrictions for UK visitors to Wales

The Welsh Government are preparing regulations that will mean that people from areas with a high-prevalence of coronavirus who are travelling from elsewhere in the UK would not be able to travel to Wales. This would include Tier 2 and 3 areas in England as well as some areas of Scotland and Northern Ireland.

It is expected that these restrictions will come into force at 18:00 on Friday 16 October.

Government announcement.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236121

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"Retaining homecare workers in the independent and voluntary sector" report from Talent For Care"Retaining homecare workers in the independent and voluntary sector" report from Talent For Care

Results from the ​"Retaining homecare workers in the independent and voluntary sector" report from Talent For Care are now available. It was produced in partnership with UKHCA. With thanks to all UKHCA members who took part.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236122

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Northern Ireland announce circuit-breaker lockdownNorthern Ireland announce circuit-breaker lockdown

The Northern Ireland Executive have announced new temporary lockdown measures to "interrupt the spread of the virus and prevent a worsening of the situation."

The measures will come into force on Friday 16 October for four weeks and include a closure of the hospitality sector apart from takeaways (which must close at 11). No overnight stays in a private home unless in a bubble. Closure of close contact services such as hairdressers. No bubbles of more than 10 people from two households and some restrictions on events, sports, weddings, funerals and sale of alcohol.

People are being advised to work from home unless unable to do so; universities and further education are being asked to deliver distance learning where possible and no unnecessary travel should be undertaken.

The half term break for schools will be extended to run from 19-30 October.

Press announcment available here.

You can access a graphic summary guide here

nidirect coronavirus advice homepage


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Research round up 14 October 2020Research round up 14 October 2020

A brief summary of some of the research reports that have been published recently:


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236117

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UKHCA's CEO Jane Townson gives evidence to the Health and Social Care CommitteeUKHCA's CEO Jane Townson gives evidence to the Health and Social Care Committee

UKHCA's CEO Jane Townson gave evidence this morning (13 October 2020) to the Covid-19 Lessons Learned Inquiry co-hosted by the Health and Social Care and the Science and Technology Committee. 

You can watch the full video here: https://youtu.be/fvzk5C6hyuk


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UKHCA News ID: 236115

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Prime Minister outlines new tiered lockdown systemPrime Minister outlines new tiered lockdown system

The Prime Minister made a statement in the House of Commons on the afternoon of Monday 12 October announcing a tiered lockdown system for England. Different regions will be categorised into the tiers specified. The tier will provide a baseline of the lockdown measures applied in an area. This will be based on the following tiers and will come into place on Wednesday 14 October (summary of the tiers available here):

  • Medium - will cover most of the country and covers existing national measures such as the restriction of meeting in groups no larger than 6 and closure of hospitality at 10pm (detailed guidance here).
  • High - will include additional measures such as those preventing the mixing of households indoors. This will apply in areas where there are existing local restrictions as well as some areas with a rising infection rate (detailed guidance here).
  • Very high - in very high areas some hospitality venues such as pubs and bars will also be closed (detailed guidance here). Liverpool will be in the very high tier (specific guidance for Liverpool here).

An overview of all local restrictions is available here. A list of alert level by region is available here. Postcode checker is here.

The guidance for people who are clinically extremely vulnerable has been updated based on the tier system and there has been an accompanying press release on the tailoring of guidance for people who are clinically extremely vulnerable to the risk level in their locality.

Retail, schools and universities will remain open.

You can read the House of Commons speech here.

The evening televised announcement is here.

The press release with further details on alert levels and the tiers of various locations is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236114

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New guidance clarifies eligibility for self-isolation payment for those on low incomeNew guidance clarifies eligibility for self-isolation payment for those on low income

The Department for Health and Social Care have released new guidance that clarifies who is eligible for the self-isolation payment of £500 for those with low income that was announced on 21 September.

Applications for the payments will be managed via local authorities in England.

You can read the guidance here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236113

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New guide on relationships, sexuality an dementia in Northern IrelandNew guide on relationships, sexuality an dementia in Northern Ireland

The Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Board has developed a new guide on relationships, sexuality and dementia. The guide aims to provide practical support to staff so that they can enable, empower and support people with dementia.

You can read more about this here and download the guide here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236111

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CQC Strategy podcasts and webinarsCQC Strategy podcasts and webinars

The CQC have released a series of podcasts about their new strategy.

They are also running webinars on their strategy and transitional regulatory approach.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236109

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Help shape the delivery of COVID-19 vaccination to social care staffHelp shape the delivery of COVID-19 vaccination to social care staff

NHS Scotland want to speak to frontline social care staff as part of research to inform the delivery of a future COVID-19 vaccination to social care workers.

The research will help them better understand social care staff needs, such as how and where delivering a COVID-19 vaccination would work best, once a suitable vaccine is available.

They're looking for workers to take part in a one-to-one telephone chat which will last around 30 minutes. This can also be done as a video call.

Times will be arranged to fit around your schedule and it's likely to take place between 19 October and early November.

Who can take part?

NHS Scotland is initially looking for social care staff (in the statutory, third and private sectors) who provide direct care in the following settings:

  • residential care and secure care for children
  • community care for persons at home (including housing support and care at home services)
  • care homes for adults.

If you are interested in taking part please email nss.sdh@nhs.scot with the subject title of your email 'C19 vacc chat'. Please also provide your job role and the type of service you work in. A mix of staff across the above groups will be contacted.

The deadline for emailing your interest in taking part is 21 October 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236107

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Expansion of Job Support SchemeExpansion of Job Support Scheme

The Chancellor has announced an expansion of the Job Support Scheme (originally announced as part of the Winter Economy Plan) to provide additional support to businesses that are required to close as a result of lockdown restrictions.

The scheme will pay two-thirds of employees salaries up to a maximum of £2,100 a month. This will be available for businesses that are legally required to close where staff are off work for a minimum of seven consecutive days. It will begin 1 November 2020 and run for 6 months. In addition, the government will be offering more generous cash grants to businesses forced to shut in local lockdowns, these are intended to help cover fixed costs.

This will be in addition to the original Job Support Scheme that is intended to help businesses with staff on reduced hours, where the government and the employer would each pay a third of the wages of the staff member for the hours not worked.

It is intended that this will be UK wide.

Further details are available here.

Comment from the Scottish Secretary.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236108

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New restrictions in Scotland from 9 and 10 OctoberNew restrictions in Scotland from 9 and 10 October

Further temporary steps are being introduced in Scotland to limit the spread of COVID-19.

The measures primarily affect hospitality venues. In the most affected regions there are recommendations to minimise use of public transport and events and sports will also be affected.

You can find the details here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236106

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CQC issue new guidance emphasising person centred support for people with autism and learning disabilitiesCQC issue new guidance emphasising person centred support for people with autism and learning disabilities

The CQC have issued new guidance for providers supporting people with autism or people with learning disabilities.

The guidance focuses on delivering person-centred care and promoting human rights. It identifies three themes: right support, right care, right culture.

You can read the guidance in full here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236104

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Flu vaccination: why you are being asked to waitFlu vaccination: why you are being asked to wait

The Government has given assurance that there is enough flu vaccine for everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated before the flu season starts, which is usually in December. Flu vaccine is delivered to GP practices, pharmacies and other services in batches in the run-up to and over flu season. This year, early demand for flu vaccine has been higher than usual.

This has meant that while a lot of people have been able to get vaccinated, some people have not been able to get vaccinated straight away as some GP practices and pharmacies have used their early supplies of flu vaccine, due to the level of demand.

There are several types of flu vaccines available. You will be offered one that is recommended for you based on your age. This means some people will be offered a flu vaccine that is in stock while others, who need a different type of vaccine, may have to wait.

If you have been advised you are eligible for a flu vaccine but can't have the flu vaccine now because the best vaccine for you is not currently available, follow the advice from your GP surgery or pharmacy and book an appointment at the next opportunity.

Read more about the availability of flu vaccine

Further update


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236101

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PPE portal: how to order COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE)PPE portal: how to order COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE)

Homecare providers registered with the Care Quality Commission can order PPE through the portal to meet the increased need that has arisen as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

There are weekly order limits through the portal which is based on the number of clients. These limits are set out in guidance.

To register with the portal, enter the email address to which you received your PPE Portal joining invitation from CQC.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236102

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Additional funding to support health and social care in ScotlandAdditional funding to support health and social care in Scotland

The health and social care sector in Scotland will receive an additional £1.1 billion funding to support its work in the pandemic.

The funding will be allocated to NHS boards and health and social care partnerships across Scotland to help them meet COVID-19 related costs such as additional staffing or sickness expenditure, enhanced infection prevention and control measures and the purchase of PPE.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236095

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Social care workers in Scotland urged to have free flu vaccinationSocial care workers in Scotland urged to have free flu vaccination

The Scottish Government is urging people eligible for free flu vaccination to take up the offer. New walk-in or drive-through centres have been set up in many areas within local facilities along with outreach programs to deliver the jab, providing an alternative to GP surgeries for eligible people.

Health and social care workers are encouraged to come forward, as well as other people in eligible groups. More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236096

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Short notice recruitment provisions resumedShort notice recruitment provisions resumed

The Care Inspectorate has reinstated the flexibility for providers in Scotland to deploy staff pending employment checks being returned, following the recent increase in COVID-19 cases and staff consequently having to self isolate.

The Inspectorate says providers should continue to request PVG checks and references but no longer need to wait for these to be returned satisfactorily before deploying individuals to regulated roles.

(Care Provider Update 1 October 2020).


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236098

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New COVID-19 surge plan announced for Northern IrelandNew COVID-19 surge plan announced for Northern Ireland

Health Minister Robin Swan has launched a new COVID-19 surge planning strategic framework for Northern Ireland.

Individual localised surge plans have also been published by each Health and Social Care Trust. The framework reflects learning from earlier months of the pandemic. More information and key initiatives

˜


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236100

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Reduction in social care support in Scotland raises human rights concernsReduction in social care support in Scotland raises human rights concerns

The Scottish Human Rights Commission has published research which shows that a considerable proportion of people who use social care support at home in Scotland have experienced either a reduction or complete withdrawal of support during the pandemic, with a detrimental effect on their human rights.

The Commission has called for the Scottish government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities to jointly commit to the return of care and support at pre-pandemic levels, as a minimum. It also wants better data collection and for public authorities to use human rights to inform future care decisions.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236094

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CWC's mental health grantsCWC's mental health grants

News from The Care Workers' Charity (CWC):

The Care Workers' Charity (CWC) provides grants to social care workers, preventing them from falling into hardship. Demand has increased since Covid-19- and mental ill health is the overwhelming theme in applications. Care workers are putting their lives at risk to care for others-experiencing unprecedented stress, trauma and anxiety. Despite this, many are not eligible for bespoke therapy- those that are cannot afford it, and are forced to cope alone.

The CWC is preparing to introduce Mental Health Grants to combat this crisis; offering sessions of therapy or counselling to ensure care workers receive help through this dark period.

Please donate by following the fundraising link here

For further information please email; info@thecwc.org.uk


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UKHCA News ID: 236092

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Free flu vaccination for homecare workersFree flu vaccination for homecare workers

Public Health Wales has confirmed that homecare workers in Wales are eligible for flu vaccination free of charge from community pharmacies.

More information and resources are available from Public Health Wales


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236089

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Petition launched for zero-rated VAT for social carePetition launched for zero-rated VAT for social care

The campaign for Zero-rated VAT for social care has launched a petition calling for social care companies to be zero-rated for VAT.

UKHCA supports the campaign and is encouraging all members to sign the petition, which can be found here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236091

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New grants for those self isolating in ScotlandNew grants for those self isolating in Scotland

Applications open on 12th October 2020 for a new grant for those self isolating. Eligible people on low incomes will receive a £500 grant if asked to self isolate.

The grant is targeted at people in receipt of Universal Credit or legacy benefits, with some discretion to make awards to others in financial hardship. The grants will be delivered through the existing Scottish Welfare Fund, which is administered by local authorities.

More information


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UKHCA News ID: 236097

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Reassurance about flu vaccine availability in WalesReassurance about flu vaccine availability in Wales

Public Health Wales has issued a reassurance that there will be enough free NHS flu vaccine to ensure eligible groups can be vaccinated.

The Welsh Government have arranged additional supplies to meet additional demand this year. Not all pharmacies and GP surgeries have received their full supply yet, which is being phased. The Welsh Government continues to urge those eligible for free flu vaccination, including health and social care workers, to come forward.

More information


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UKHCA News ID: 236099

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Health and social care staff can claim immigration health surcharge refundHealth and social care staff can claim immigration health surcharge refund

The scheme to exempt non-EEA nationals applying for a health and care visa to work in a health or social care setting, in an eligible occupation, from paying the immigration health surcharge (IHS) has launched.

The IHS allows non-EEA nationals to access the NHS on broadly the same basis as UK residents if they are seeking to work, study, or join family members for more than six months.

The Government's Tier 2 Health and Care visa launched in August exempted eligible staff from paying the IHS. The new reimbursement scheme goes further to ensure that staff not covered by the visa, but who have worked in the NHS or care sector since 31 March 2020 are able to claim reimbursement for themselves and their dependents, even if they paid the surcharge before this date.

Those eligible can now apply online and access guidance on claiming the reimbursement which will be paid in six-month instalments.

Anyone holding a relevant visa, who has worked in health and social care continuously for at least six months and paid the IHS will be eligible for a reimbursement.

IHS Reimbursement Scheme

Guidance on the Scheme


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UKHCA News ID: 236086

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MPs find pandemic is impacting on normal NHS servicesMPs find pandemic is impacting on normal NHS services

The Health and Social Care Committee's report '˜Delivering core NHS and care services during the pandemic and beyond' concludes the patient experience has been unacceptably poor for some patients requiring normal NHS services in England.

Inadequate communication, nationally and locally, have added to people's stress; some people have been left thinking the NHS is not working on routine non-COVID conditions, or are worried about going into hospitals where there could be a risk of catching COVID-19.


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UKHCA News ID: 236084

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Employers won't have to pay National Insurance on Test and Trace Support PaymentsEmployers won't have to pay National Insurance on Test and Trace Support Payments

HMRC have published a measure saying National insurance will not have to be paid by employers on payments made under the Test and Trace Support Payment Scheme in England. These payments are made to employees who are on a low income and have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

This measure will come into effect from 22 October 2020.

HMRC measure


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Thank You Keyworkers AppealThank You Keyworkers Appeal

The Mothers Union are running a Thank You Keyworkers Appeal to provide experiences and short breaks (taking place in 2021) to those who have sacrificed family time during the pandemic.

Nominate a homecare keyworker or apply yourself here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236082

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MAC recommendation on senior care workers and registered managersMAC recommendation on senior care workers and registered managers

Following strong arguments made by UKHCA, the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has recommended that senior care workers and registered managers be placed on the Shortage Occupation List (SOL). Nursing assistants and auxiliaries will also be added to the SOL.

While careworkers and care coordinators have not been added to the SOL, UKHCA is encouraged by the remarks the MAC made about the need for additional funding for social care.

"The MAC has argued for some years now that funding social care to a level that enables higher wages to be paid, and consequently makes jobs more attractive to the domestic workforce, is the right way to address the workforce issues in the sector, rather than relying on migrant workers to fill the gaps. The risks of this funding increase not happening in a timely manner are stark. If that does not occur, or occurs with substantial delay, we would expect the end of freedom of movement to increase the pressure on the social care sector, something that would be particularly difficult to understand at a time when so many care occupations are central to the COVID-19 pandemic frontline response."

Read the review of the Shortage Occupation List


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UKHCA News ID: 236081

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Glove types - PPE guidance updateGlove types - PPE guidance update

The main guidance for the use of PPE in homecare (available here) has been updated to include further detail on the types of glove that should be used.

Under question 6 on page 10 the guidance now specifies that nitrile, neoprene or latex gloves should be used. The guidance then says "Vinyl gloves should not be worn if you anticipate that there will be contact with bodily fluids or blood. They may be worn for routine cleaning, however if chemicals are being used as part of a decontamination schedule a COSHH assessment must be carried out and the correct PPE worn."

Providers should consider this guidance before placing orders for vinyl gloves.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236080

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UKHCA featured on BBC Radio 4's You and YoursUKHCA featured on BBC Radio 4's You and Yours

UKHCA's Policy Director Colin Angel featured on BBC Radio 4's You and Yours on Monday 28th September 2020.

Listen to the clip here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236079

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CQC update on transitional approach and Provider Collaboration ReviewsCQC update on transitional approach and Provider Collaboration Reviews

The CQC have issued a statement outlining further detail about the transitional approach to regulation that they will be rolling out for adult social care from 6 October 2020. This will mean taking a flexible approach appropriate to the ongoing pandemic. It will include monitoring risk based on the existing Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOEs). Inspection activity will be more targeted when there are concerns and the technology and local relationships will be used to improve contact with service users.

CQC have said in their statement that when monitoring risk, there will be no change in rating. Where the monitoring leads to an inspection, which may not cover all aspects of the five key questions and KLOEs, there may not be a change in rating for a service.

The CQC have also published their latest COVID-19 insight report. This includes some initial insight into their Provider Collaboration Review findings, which looked at how care providers have worked together during the pandemic. The full report and findings are due in October.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236077

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New notifications for Care Inspectarate in ScotlandNew notifications for Care Inspectarate in Scotland

The Care Inspectorate in Scotland have updated their COVID-19 notifications to make them easier to use.

These include 4 new notifications:

  1. Suspected cases of COVID-19
  2. End of suspected outbreak of COVID-19
  3. Confirmed cases of COVID-19 notification
  4. End of confirmed COVID-19 outbreak notification

You can find further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236076

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DHSC builds strong domestic supply base for PPE this winterDHSC builds strong domestic supply base for PPE this winter

The Department of Health and Social Care's new Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Strategy describes how the Government has reduced dependence on overseas suppliers and built a strong domestic supply base for PPE in England. DHSC say that are confident they have secured enough supply for this winter period and have the processes and logistics in place to distribute PPE to where it is needed.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Strategy Stabilise and build resilience, published 28 September 2020


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236075

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New interim Chief Executive for Health and Social Care Board in Northern IrelandNew interim Chief Executive for Health and Social Care Board in Northern Ireland

Sharon Gallagher has been appointed the new interim Chief Executive for the Health and Social Care Board in Northern Ireland.

Further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236074

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Self isolation: changes in England today include fines, increased contact from Test and Trace and eligibility for £500 isolation payment for those on a low incomeSelf isolation: changes in England today include fines, increased contact from Test and Trace and eligibility for £500 isolation payment for those on a low income

The changes to self-isolation announced last week will be taking effect in England today. This means self isolation will now be a legal obligation.

These include:

  • Fines for breaking self-isolation which start at £1,000 but could be up to £10,000 for the most significant offences.
  • Fines for businesses who allow or encourage staff to work when they should be self-isolating.
  • NHS Test and Trace will be increasing call contact with those self-isolating.
  • Those who work but are on a low income and in receipt of benefits may be eligible for a £500 isolation payment from today. This will be available from Local Authorities.

Read the press release here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236073

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Highlights - Chancellor's statement on jobs and businessHighlights - Chancellor's statement on jobs and business

UKHCA wants to keep providers up to date with Chancellor's statement made in the House of Commons today (Thursday 24 September 2020). More detail will be provided as soon as it is available.

For Businesses:

  • "Pay as you grow" scheme for businesses which took bounce back loans. Loans extended from six to ten years. Businesses can move to interest only payments or suspend payments if they are "in real trouble" for up to six months.
  • Businesses who deferred their VAT will have the option of splitting it into smaller, interest free payments over the course of 11 months.
  • Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans will be extended for up to 10 years.
  • A new loan scheme will be introduced in January 2021.

Support for jobs

  • The furlough scheme will end.
  • A new Jobs Support Scheme is being introduced for employees who are working at least a third of their normal hours and being paid for that as normal. The government and employers will jointly increase their wages to cover two-thirds of their lost pay and the employee will keep their job.
  • All small and medium-sized businesses are eligible, but larger businesses must show their turnover has fallen during the crisis. Employers can use it even if they have not previously used the furlough scheme it replaces.
  • The Job Support Scheme will run for six months from November.
  • The existing grant for self-employed people is being extended on similar terms to the Jobs Support Scheme.

More information: Winter Economy Plan

The announcement has also been welcomed by the Secretary of State for Scotland.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236068

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Delivering care at home and housing support services during the COVID-19 pandemicDelivering care at home and housing support services during the COVID-19 pandemic

The Care Inspectorate has today published a report on how care at home and housing support services have adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic in Scotland.

You can access the report here.

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236067

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Winter Plan - Sign up for Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT)Winter Plan - Sign up for Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT)

UKHCA is encouraging all members to register with the Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT) by 30th September 2020.  If you have already registered on the DSPT, you do not need to do anything. If you are not CQC-registered, you do not have to complete the DSPT but may choose to do so as good practice.

Although not mandatory, CQC expects registered care providers in England to register with DSPT. The government has also asked providers to engage with the DSPT as part of the Winter Plan for adult social care.

You can sign up to the DSPT using this link. NHSX DSPT

If you need advice on signing up to the DSPT, you can contact the NHSX Information Governance team on IGpolicyteam@nhs.net 

More information and guidance is available from Digital Social Care who provide advice and support to the care sector on technology and data protection.

Digital Social Care is a partnership project between members of the Skills for Care and NHS Digital and the Care Provider Alliance of which UKHCA is a member.

Digital Social Care FAQs

Winter plan


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236066

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Further national measures to address rising cases of coronavirus in EnglandFurther national measures to address rising cases of coronavirus in England

The Government announced on 22 September 2020 further measures to address the increasing cases of coronavirus.

The latest announcement covers:

  • Face coverings
  • Working from home
  • Hospitality and leisure businesses
  • Meeting people safely.

Read the latest announcement

Read the Prime minister's statement

These are in addition to the announcement made on 21 September 2020 to support and enforce self-isolation.

These measures apply to England - but there may be different rules if you live in an area under local lockdown: and you should check local lockdown rules. If you are in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland, different rules apply.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236065

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Care bubbles now exempt from interhousehold mixing restrictionsCare bubbles now exempt from interhousehold mixing restrictions

Informal childcare for those under 14 and caring arrangements for vulnerable adults will be allowed in local areas under current restrictions in England which ban household mixing, and all future areas.

The exemption, which comes into force from 22 September 2020, means that a relative or friend can care for a child or vulnerable adult from a different household, as well as the formal childcare provided by registered childcare professionals.

Government press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236062

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Postcode restrictions extended to whole of Northern IrelandPostcode restrictions extended to whole of Northern Ireland

As new cases of coronavirus rise, the Executive has decided that restrictions which apply to certain postcodes in Northern Ireland will be extended across the country from 6 pm on 22 September. The restrictions are:

  • No mixing of households in private dwellings, with exemptions for: bubbling with one other household; caring responsibilities including childcare; essential maintenance; supported living arrangements; visits required for legal or medical purposes; or marriage or civil partnerships where one partner is terminally ill.
  • No more than six people to gather in a private garden from no more than two households. Children aged 12 and under from those two households are discounted from this total.

Press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236063

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COVID-19 alert level moves from 3 to 4COVID-19 alert level moves from 3 to 4

As the number of coronavirus cases are increasing in significant parts of the UK, the Joint Biosecurity Centre has recommended the COVID-19 alert level should move from Level 3 (epidemic is in general circulation) to Level 4 (epidemic is in general circulation; transmission is high or rising exponentially).

The CMOs for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have recommended all four nations of the UK should move to Level 4.

The higher the level, the stricter measures the Government is likely to impose to address the issue.

Government press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236064

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Secretary of State announces new measures in response to increase in coronavirus cases.Secretary of State announces new measures in response to increase in coronavirus cases.

Today the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care announced new measures in England in relation to controlling coronavirus.

This includes:

  • the introduction of a £500 Isolation Support Payment for people on low incomes who can't work because they have tested positive or been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace. This will be available to people who are in receipt of benefits. The system for claims will be established by Local Authorities and these are expected to be in place by 12 October, claims can be backdated to 28 September (further information here).
  • the introduction of a legal duty to self-isolate if you have tested positive or been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, backed up by fines ranging from £1,000-£10,000.
  • regular checks on those who are self-isolating.
  • a crack down on businesses who are encouraging staff not to follow self-isolation advice.

The government has also issued a document on the prioritisation of testing available here. It is disappointing that this document makes no reference to the prioritisation of testing for homecare workers. We believe that this is largely based on government's assumption that the prevalence rate of coronavirus transmission amongst our workforce is around the same level as the general population. UKHCA continues to urge government to reconsider its testing strategy.

The Secretary of State's announcement can be found here.

The information on increasing transmission rates presented on 21 September by scientific advisers is also available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236061

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Adult social care: coronavirus (COVID-19) winter plan 2020 to 2021Adult social care: coronavirus (COVID-19) winter plan 2020 to 2021

Government's Winter Plan for adult social care was finally published late on 18 September 2020, along with the report and recommendations of the Adult Social Care Taskforce.

UKHCA has reviewed the documents - over 225 pages in total - and emailed UKHCA members initial observations and links to the relevant documents:

Adult social care: coronavirus (CODIVD-19) winter plan 2020 to 2021

Government Press release

Social Care Sector COVID-19 Support Taskforce: report on first phase of COVID-19 pandemic

Adult social care winter plan: letter from Minister for Care to local authorities


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UKHCA News ID: 236060

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Skills for Care - new resources - tailoring the care certificateSkills for Care - new resources - tailoring the care certificate

Skills for Care have produced some new resources about tailoring the Care Certificate to workforces who need specilaist knowledge. These include tailoring for working with people with dementia, mental health conditions and learning disabilities.

The resources are available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236059

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Care Inspectorate Scotland - Occupational Risk Assessments and SurveysCare Inspectorate Scotland - Occupational Risk Assessments and Surveys

Scottish providers are being asked to undertake a workplace risk assessment and then support staff to complete an individual risk assessment with their manager using the COVID-19 occupational risk assessment tool. This will support staff and managers to agree a course of action on working duties.

The Scottish government has issued guidance on the tool, which is available here.

Separately, providers who have used the Scottish Government's framework contract for PPE with Lyreco are invited to provide feedback via a survey.


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UKHCA News ID: 236058

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Further local restrictions announced to tackle rising infection ratesFurther local restrictions announced to tackle rising infection rates

Further restrictions are to be introduced in parts of North West, Midlands and West Yorkshire from 22 September to curb rising coronavirus infection rates.

Government press release, which has more detail on the restrictions. These have been agreed with local leaders and will be accompanied by regulations and guidance.

New restrictions have also been applied to the North East of England - further details here.

There were also updates in relation to Leicester and Bolton.

List of areas with local restrictions


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236057

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Infection Control Fund to be extended in EnglandInfection Control Fund to be extended in England

The Government has announced there will be a further tranche of funding under the Infection Control Fund in England. An an extra £546 million will be available to help halt transmission of COVID-19 throughout winter. As before, the bulk will aimed at care homes but we understand this time the funding may include a percentage that must be spent on homecare.

Colin Angel, UKHCA Policy Director, gave the following quote to the press:

“We understand that the grant determination letter, which will set-out the conditions of how the next iteration of the ICF can be used, may not be published until next week. UKHCA has been pressing Government to ensure that homecare services, including those which support people who fund their own care, are covered by the ICF, rather than relying on a postcode lottery of individual council’s decisions. We have also made the case that the ICF should be allowed to help employers ensure that staff are able to pay the wages of workers who are required to self-isolate.”

Homecare Insight article quoting UKHCA

More detail is expected in the Government's Adult Social Care Winter Plan, due out later today, and in next week's grant determination letter. We will email UKHCA members about these when we have the documents.

Government Press release - More than £500 million for social care to reduce
coronavirus transmission over winter


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UKHCA News ID: 236056

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Providers should tell people how to escalate complaints to the OmbudsmanProviders should tell people how to escalate complaints to the Ombudsman

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has published its Annual Review of Adult Social Care Complaints received about adult social care in England during 2019-20.

The Ombudsman received 3,073 complaints and enquiries, but of those, only 430 were from people who arranged their care privately with independent providers.

The Ombudsman is now calling for the government to use the planned social care reforms to require providers to tell people, if they are unhappy with the services they are receiving, how to complain not only to the providers themselves, but also how to escalate that complaint to the Ombudsman.

Read more information here


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UKHCA News ID: 236053

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The future of health protection - the National Institute for Health ProtectionThe future of health protection - the National Institute for Health Protection

The Government has published a document providing a high-level overview of plans to better protect and improve the public's health. It includes actions the Government will take immediately to strengthen health protection systems and its response to COVID-19 ahead of the winter.

It follows the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care's announcement of the new National Institute for Health Protection on 18 August 2020.

Read more information here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236054

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Digital innovation in adult social careDigital innovation in adult social care

A report by the Institute of Public Care at Oxford Brookes University, commissioned by the Local Government Association (LGA) and Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), looks at examples of social care digital innovation in local government.

Areas considered include: What have we done? What have we learned? and What next? The document provides a stock take of recent digital activity across local government which can be used to promote and stimulate continued work in this area with local communities.

Executive summary Report


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UKHCA News ID: 236051

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Have your say on insurance premiums in the homecare sectorHave your say on insurance premiums in the homecare sector

A reminder the Care Provider Alliance (CPA) is carrying out a second insurance survey looking at the impact of coronavirus on premiums and underwriting.

There is just time for homecare providers to respond before the closing date of 17 September 2020: CPA survey


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236052

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UKHCA responds to Tribunal ruling on National Minimum Wage and Working Time RegulationsUKHCA responds to Tribunal ruling on National Minimum Wage and Working Time Regulations

A ruling by the Employment Tribunal, in a long-standing case relating to the National Minimum Wage Regulations and the Working Time Regulations has been decided, after it was first launched in 2016.

The case considered the matter of the calculation of how the Regulations applied to the definition of 'working time', particularly in relation to gaps in the workers' rotas.

The Tribunal found in favour of the claimants, careworkers Ms E Harris and eight others, who had delivered services through their employers to Haringey Council in north London. The careworkers' employers have agreed to make payments ranging from £850 to £17,800 each.

UKHCA has issued the following statement to The Guardian newspaper, at their request:

"United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) fully supports the payment of at least the National Minimum Wage for all hours of work, including the applicable travel time careworkers undertake between scheduled homecare visits, as defined in the law. The Association's support to employers includes the production of guidance based on the Regulations and emerging case law.

"Although the judgement in this case is not binding on other cases before the tribunals, it could change the interpretation of the law. The judgement is therefore potentially significant for homecare providers, councils, the NHS and for people who purchase their own care privately, or use a direct payment.

"UKHCA has consistently highlighted the implications of the way that homecare services are purchased by councils and the NHS, usually at extremely low hourly rates, and often calculated solely according to the number of minutes of care delivered. This judgement adds weight to the need to correct the unacceptable purchasing methods used in state-funded homecare.

"We continue to urge central and local government to address the inadequate funding of homecare services to ensure the best possible terms and conditions for the homecare workforce."

Guardian article


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UKHCA News ID: 236050

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Coronavirus testing guidance for employersCoronavirus testing guidance for employers

Due to lower coronavirus prevalence rates in homecare, the government has not offered, or recommended, routine, asymptomatic testing for homecare providers.

However, some providers may wish to be aware of the Department for Health and Social Care's new guidance for employers on the regulations and legal obligations of running their own internal coronavirus testing programmes.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236048

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Businesses in England and Wales urged to prepare for NHS COVID-19 appBusinesses in England and Wales urged to prepare for NHS COVID-19 app

Pubs, restaurants, hairdressers, cinemas and other venues across England and Wales are being urged to download QR codes to prepare for public rollout of app, so customers can check in as they enter.

The NHS COVID-19 app is due to launch on 24 September in England and Wales.

QR codes will be a way for tracing systems to contact multiple people if coronavirus outbreaks are identified in venues and, in England, will help businesses meet the legal requirement to record the contact details of customers, visitors and staff on their premises.

Businesses should download the QR codes at gov.uk/create-coronavirus-qr-poster.

For more information on the NHS COVID-19 app, visit covid19.nhs.uk.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/businesses-urged-to-prepare-for-nhs-covid-19-app


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236047

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Study reveals disparities in pay and conditions across social care workforce in WalesStudy reveals disparities in pay and conditions across social care workforce in Wales

A study by the Welsh Institute for Health and Social Care, University of South Wales, for the Welsh Government, has found that the social care workforce in Wales is impacted by high turnover and vacancy rates, with difficulties recruiting and retaining care workers. These difficulties were attributed to factors including:

  • competing roles outside of social care
  • perceived low status of social care as a valued career option
  • working hours
  • shift patterns

The report said social care has a low paid workforce that can result in care workers facing financial difficulties.

There is variation in pay between the three social care sectors (i.e. local authorities, the independent sector and the third sector) and the NHS. Local authorities appear to pay more and offer favourable terms and conditions.

Review of Evidence of Variation in Terms and Conditions for Social Care Employment Contracts in Wales by Sarah Wallace, Tony Garthwaite and Mark Llewellyn Welsh Institute for Health and Social Care, University of South Wales.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236042

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Scotland sets maximum gathering at six people from two households indoors or outdoorsScotland sets maximum gathering at six people from two households indoors or outdoors

The Scottish Government is to set a maximum gathering at six people from two households indoors or outdoors from 14 September.

Children under 12 from within the two households will not be counted in the new limit. The restrictions won't apply where there is other sector specific guidance in force, for example for gyms, for childcare or for organised sports, and there will be some other limited exceptions for larger households, education, and places of worship. It does apply to hospitality.

Scotland remains in Phase 3, with route map changes planned for 14 September postponed until 5 October, and a final decision being taken nearer the time, depending on transmission rates.

https://www.gov.scot/news/maximum-gathering-set-at-six-people-from-two-households/


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UKHCA News ID: 236043

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New restrictions to start in Wales from 14 SeptemberNew restrictions to start in Wales from 14 September

Mark Drakeford, First Minister, has announced that facemasks will be obligatory for those over 11 in shops and other indoor public spaces in Wales from 14 September 2020. Health and medical exemptions will apply.

More than six people from an extended household will also be banned from meeting indoors from the same date. This rule will not apply to children aged 11 and under .

Up to 30 people from different homes can still meet outdoors, within the rules.

Stricter rules may apply in areas where there are local restrictions, like Caerphilly.

https://gov.wales/further-constraints-meeting-socially-and-compulsory-face-coverings-help-prevent-new-coronavirus

Meanwhile, businesses in Wales are urged to prepare for the new NHS COVID-app, being launched on 24 September, by displaying a NHS QR code poster on entry, to allow customers with the app to check in. More information:

https://gov.wales/businesses-urged-prepare-nhs-covid-19-app


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236044

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Safeguarding to be overhauled in Northern Ireland, following residential care failingsSafeguarding to be overhauled in Northern Ireland, following residential care failings

Health Minister Robin Swann is to bring forward a new Adult Safeguarding Bill for Northern Ireland, following the first report from an independent review commissioned to examine the health and social care system's response to care failings at Dunmurry Manor Care Home.

Plans include standing down the Northern Ireland Adult Safeguarding Partnership and moving to establishing an Independent Adult Safeguarding Board at arms-length from the Department of Health.

The Northern Ireland Executive intends to consult on a range of legislative options before Christmas to assist the development of an Adult Safeguarding Bill.

https://www.health-ni.gov.uk/news/minister-announces-plans-adult-safeguarding-bill-northern-ireland


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236045

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'Hands. Face. Space' campaign launched by Government'Hands. Face. Space' campaign launched by Government

The Government's 'Hands. Face. Space' public information campaign urges the public to continue to wash their hands, cover their face and make space to control infection rates and avoid a second peak.

The new science based public information campaign will be launched ahead of winter to highlight how everyone can help to stop the spread of the virus by remembering to wash their hands, cover their face and make space.

'Hands. Face. Space' will run across TV, radio, print, out of home, social and digital display advertising, as well as on community media channels and will be supported by a variety of public and private sector partners throughout the coming weeks.

Promotional resources are available from Public Health England here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236041

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Government guidance revised following restrictions on social gatheringsGovernment guidance revised following restrictions on social gatherings

Government guidance has been revised following restrictions placed on social gatherings in England, described in Coronavirus (COVID-19): What has changed 9 September, new measures to suppress the virus.

A list of guidance revised so far is below:

Guidance: Coronavirus outbreak FAQs: what you can and can't do, updated 9 September 2020.

Guidance Staying alert and safe (social distancing), updated 9 September 2020.

Guidance, Making a support bubble with another household, updated: 9 September 2020.

Guidance - Stay alert and safe: social distancing guidance for young people, updated 9 September 2020.

Coronavirus - Guidance on access to green spaces, updated 9 September 2020.

Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19), updated 9 September 2020. 

The measures are accompanied by a new public media campaign conveying the message 'Hands, Face, Space'.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236039

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New measures to suppress the virus and keep the number of infections downNew measures to suppress the virus and keep the number of infections down

In an announcement made by the Government today (9 September 2020), new measures will be introduced to suppress the virus and keep the number of infections down. From Monday 14 September:

  • You must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than 6. This will apply indoors and outdoors, including in private homes. This change will simplify and clarify the rules on social gatherings, so they are easier to understand and easier for the police to enforce.
  • There will be a limited number of exemptions. COVID-19 Secure venues, such as places of worship, restaurants and hospitality venues, can still host larger numbers in total but groups of up to 6 must not mix or form larger groups.
  • This rule will not apply to individual households or support bubbles of more than 6 who will still be able to gather together.
  • Education and work settings are unaffected, and organised team sports will still be able to proceed, as will weddings and funerals up to 30.

From Monday, this limit will be enforceable in law.

These measures apply to England - but there may be different rules if you live in an area under local lockdown and you should check those rules here. If you are in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, different rules may apply.

Read the full announcement


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236038

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Protect Scotland app now available to downloadProtect Scotland app now available to download

NHS Scotland's contact tracing app, Protect Scotland, is now available to download for free via Apple and Google stores.

The app supplements person-to-person contact tracing, and is based on the app currently used in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

It uses Bluetooth technology to anonymously alert users if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, and advises them to self-isolate.

The app uses encrypted, anonymised codes exchanged between smartphones to determine all close contacts, protecting people's privacy.

Close contacts are defined as people who have been within two metres of someone who has tested positive for 15 minutes.

https://www.gov.scot/news/protect-scotland-app-launches/


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236046

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Scotland - Pre-employment checks revert to previous positionScotland - Pre-employment checks revert to previous position

In light of registered care services not reporting significant staffing and recruitment problems, the Care Inspectorate and the Scottish Social Services Council have decided to revert to the previous position regarding pre-employment checks.

This means that providers are expected to have received satisfactory checks including Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) membership and references before an individual starts work. Removing the previous flexibility introduced at the start of the pandemic is aligned with Disclosure Scotland confirming that there are no longer delays in PVG checking.

Read more here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236037

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Social gatherings of more than six people banned from 14 SeptemberSocial gatherings of more than six people banned from 14 September

The government has restored some coronavirus restrictions in England to try and stem transmission.

There will be a ban on social gatherings of more than six people either indoors or outdoors. Exemptions will apply to households and support bubbles bigger than six people, schools, workplaces, COVID-secure weddings, funerals and organised team sport.

The new restrictions will be enforced by a £100 fine, doubling to a maximum of £3200.

Government press release, 9 September 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236034

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Pandemic delays social care reform but discussions have resumedPandemic delays social care reform but discussions have resumed

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock was questioned by MPs about the government’s plans for a long-term solution on social care reform recently.

In the last session of the inquiry on into social care funding and workforce, the Health and Social Care Secretary said, when asked about delays in bringing forward reform, the Government had made clear manifesto commitments on social care, but obviously coronavirus had delayed longer-term reform. Internal discussions on reform have picked up again.

Earlier, local government representatives had called for a social care workforce strategy and a National Care Wage of £10.90 per hour, and warned of the precarious position of about a third of social care providers who were currently making a loss, with government funding to councils running out just as winter is approaching.

More about the inquiry  There is a summary of proceedings on 8 September on the Committee’s Twitter feed @CommonsHealth

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236033

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Travel restrictions update: Greek IslandsTravel restrictions update: Greek Islands

People (including care workers) arriving in England from Crete, Lesvos, Mykonos, Santorini, Serifos, Tinos or Zakynthos from 4am Wednesday 9 September will need to self-isolate for 2 weeks.

In England see guidance here. News item here.

Countries currently exempt from advice against all but essential travel are listed here but subject to change.

Note that the restrictions, including on Greece, vary in different administrations:

In Scotland see guidance here.

Guidance for Wales available here (awaiting update).

Guidance for Northern Ireland available here.

Briefing by Anthony Collins Solicitors for UKHCA members on travelling abroad and quarantine restrictions. See also guidance on employment rights when returning to the UK.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236031

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NHS and Social Care Coronavirus Life Assurance Scheme 2020NHS and Social Care Coronavirus Life Assurance Scheme 2020

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) would like to increase awareness of the Government's coronavirus life assurance scheme among bereaved families of social care staff who have died after contracting COVID-19 at work.

UKHCA understands that deaths amongst homecare workers are extremely low, but DHSC want to ensure that family members of anyone who sadly dies as a result of COVID-19 is able to make a claim.

The Government scheme pays a £60,000 lump sum if a staff member dies as a result of coronavirus and had recently been working in a frontline role where personal care is given to individuals who have contracted coronavirus.

The scheme is administered by the NHS Business Services Authority (NHS BSA) and there are separate schemes for England and Wales.

More information on the scheme and how to make a claim


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236032

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Fixing Social Care, Better Quality Services and JobsFixing Social Care, Better Quality Services and Jobs

The TUC has issued a report which looks at how the social care system in England can be reformed to provide long-term, sustainable funding of services, which are value for money and meet the needs of individuals and communities.

The TUC recommend fair pay and decent work for the social care workforce, including a £10 an hour minimum wage, an end to zero-hour contracts, better sick pay and a real valuing of care skills, with a national skills and accreditation framework linked to a transparent pay and grading structure.

The report also calls for sectoral collective bargaining and limits on private sector involvement in social care, reflecting the TUC's general approach to these policies. 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236029

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CQC consulting on changes to Market Oversight GuidanceCQC consulting on changes to Market Oversight Guidance

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) are proposing to make changes to guidance on the Market Oversight scheme, and have listed these on page 71 of their engagement paper:

Market Oversight of 'difficult to replace' providers of adult social care Guidance for providers August 2020 (draft)

The changes are the result of CQC's experience of carrying out market oversight since it was given statutory responsibility in 2015. CQC has 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. There is more about Market Oversight and how it works on CQC's website. CQC say there are around 65 large or specialist providers of residential care services and home-care services in the scheme at present. 

The consultation closes on 19 October 2020. Online form to respond.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236030

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Beyond COVID: new thinking on the future of adult social careBeyond COVID: new thinking on the future of adult social care

SCIE has issued a position paper for commissioners and senior managers working in the health and social care sector which sets out the findings of the Beyond COVID: new thinking on the future of adult social care programme.

The paper lists priorities for the reform of social care in England, termed the 'three strategic shifts', along with 21 recommendations to aid the reform process.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236028

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New figures show Scottish social services workforce is largest since reports beganNew figures show Scottish social services workforce is largest since reports began

A new report, published by the Scottish Social Services Council, shows the size of the social services workforce has risen to 206,400, an increase of 0.8% since 2018 and comprising approximately 7.8% of all Scottish employment.·

The three largest sub-sectors are housing support/care at home, care homes for adults and day care of children; which together make up almost 78% of the workforce. Housing support/care at home had the largest headcount in 2019, at 71350, with care homes for adults second at 53080.

Scottish Social Service Sector: Report on 2019 Workforce Data


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UKHCA News ID: 236036

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New guidance on the long term effects of coronavirusNew guidance on the long term effects of coronavirus

New guidance has been issued on the long-term health effects of having COVID-19. The guidance notes there is accumulating evidence to suggest that cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) who have experienced both mild and severe symptoms can experience long-term health effects.

The document gives information on the health problems reported in COVID-19 cases following acute disease, and guidance for healthcare professionals on how to advise recovering COVID-19 patients.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-long-term-health-effects, published 7 September 2020.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236035

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New advice on supporting people outside of their homeNew advice on supporting people outside of their home

New guidance has been published on supporting people outside of their home in England - for example, when visiting others or going out.

The guidance is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236027

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Home Care Expo moved to March 2021Home Care Expo moved to March 2021

ROAR B2B, the organisers of Home Care Expo, have taken the decision to postpone the event to 9th-10th March 2021.

After consultation with partners, exhibitors and visitors, they have taken the extremely difficult decision to postpone the event until Spring 2021.

Further details and updates can be found via their website.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236026

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Social care workers in Wales to receive £500Social care workers in Wales to receive £500

The Welsh Government has introduced a special payment scheme for social care workers to recognise their hard work and commitment of staff during the most challenging period of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Careworkers employed in the qualifying period of 5 March to 31 May 2020 will receive £500 from the scheme which is aimed at staff in registered care homes, homecare services and Personal Assistants (PAs).

HMRC have confirmed that these payments will be liable for tax, national insurance contributions and student loan repayments, where appropriate. They will also be included in benefits calculations

See details of the special payment scheme and how to apply


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236025

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Review of adult social care in Scotland to consider national care serviceReview of adult social care in Scotland to consider national care service

An independent review is to consider how adult social care can be most effectively reformed in Scotland to deliver a national approach to care and support services.

The review, set up under Scotland's Programme for Government, will be chaired by Derek Feeley, former director general of Health and Social Care in the Scottish Government.

UKHCA's Policy Director, Colin Angel, said:

"This review is clearly intended to be wide ranging. Scottish Government have not yet published the terms of the review, so what the announcement refers to as a 'national care service' in Scotland is not defined. Although Scotland has a very strong public sector ethos, a 'national' care service does not necessarily mean a 'nationalised' care service, with services being brought under public control. The cost of bringing so much of the independent and voluntary provider market into public ownership would be immense. A national care service can equally be about ensuring an equitable, consistent care offer is available throughout Scotland."

Reporting by January 2021, the independent review will take into account the experiences of those supported by, and who work, in social care, as well as consider funding, governance, administration and delivery. The review is intended to build on the Scottish Government's existing commitments to improve provision and address issues thrown into sharp relief during the pandemic.

More information, including details of the review's panel of experts


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236024

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Bolton and Trafford to remain under existing restrictionsBolton and Trafford to remain under existing restrictions

The government has reversed plans to ease local lockdowns in parts of Greater Manchester.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said following a "significant change" in the level of infection rates in the last few days, Bolton and Trafford would remain under existing restrictions, meaning residents cannot meet people outside their bubbles either indoors in homes or in gardens.

Read the statement from Matt Hancock

See report by the BBC

(UKHCA members may like to note this reverses the position for Bolton and Trafford referred to in this morning's email alert.)

Further information avaiable here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236023

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Check if you can apply for a grant through the Kickstart SchemeCheck if you can apply for a grant through the Kickstart Scheme

The Government has introduced a Kickstart Scheme to create new 6-month job placements for young people who are currently on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. The job placements are designed to support young people to develop the skills and experience they need to find work after completing the scheme.

Funding is available for 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. There is also £1,500 per job placement available for setup costs, support and training. The scheme applies to England, Scotland and Wales.

Find out more about the Kickstart Scheme


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UKHCA News ID: 236022

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Employers' contribution for furloughed staff rises from 1 SeptemberEmployers' contribution for furloughed staff rises from 1 September

Changes to the UK's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough scheme) mean employers have to pay 10% of wages of furloughed staff from 1 September, and in October, 20%. National insurance and employer pension contributions were payable from 1 August 2020. The scheme closes at the end of October.

Guidance - Claim for wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

A Job Retention Bonus scheme has been introduced. More information

The scheme to support the self-employed has been extended so eligible self-employed workers can receive a second and final grant, at a reduced rate.

Guidance, Claim a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235742

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Local lockdown update: Restrictions lifted in some parts of the North of EnglandLocal lockdown update: Restrictions lifted in some parts of the North of England

In some parts of the North of England (including Bolton, Stockport, Trafford, Hyndburn and Burnley) local lockdown restrictions will be lifted, allowing two housholds to meet.

Restrictions are continuing in other areas, but vary significantly by locality.

See here for further information.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236021

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New page provides an overview of COVID-19 adult social care guidance in EnglandNew page provides an overview of COVID-19 adult social care guidance in England

The Department for Health and Social Care have launched a new page on gov.uk that brings together Covid-19 guidance for adult social care providers in England.

Access via this link


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236019

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MSPs hear evidence on care regulator's response to pandemicMSPs hear evidence on care regulator's response to pandemic

MSPs on the Scottish Parliament's Health and Sport Committee heard evidence recently from the Care Inspectorate on their response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although much of the session focused on care homes, MSPs also wanted to hear about care at home services.

The Care Inspectorate said they are in the process of completing an inquiry into care at home services, which should be published in three or four weeks. The regulator has kept in close touch with providers during the pandemic to provide support and monitor their concerns, and those of the public.

Care Inspectorate report on its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which formed part of its submission to MSPs.

Minutes of the Health and Sport Committee, 25 August 2020, Care at home is mentioned on pages 48 and 49.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236017

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Scottish care at home providers' views sought on pandemicScottish care at home providers' views sought on pandemic

The Scottish Parliament's Health and Sport Committee is seeking views from people who provide, or receive, care and support at home as part of their social care inquiry. They want to hear from:

  • individuals receiving care at home
  • family members and unpaid carers
  • staff, managers or owners of a care at home services, or personal assistants providing care

The Committee has created a short survey to understand the impact of Covid-19 on care at home services, and what issues the pandemic has highlighted, improved or made worse.

This evidence will be added to that already gathered about social care, and the effect of the pandemic on care homes, and used to support the Committee's formal sessions in October and November 2020.

Deadline to submit views: 7 September 2020.

Please use this link to submit your views through Citizen Space.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236018

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Travel restrictions update: Switzerland, Jamaica and the Czech RepublicTravel restrictions update: Switzerland, Jamaica and the Czech Republic

Switzerland, Jamaica and the Czech Republic are no longer exempt from the FCO advice against all non-essential international travel. (Though in Scotland, Switzerland was aleady no longer exempt). Cuba will be added to the exemption list for all UK administrations.

This will be effective from 4am on Saturday 29 August.

Care workers returning from countries which are not on the exempt destinations list, will be required to self-isolate for fourteen days on return to the UK.

In England see guidance here.

In Scotland see guidance here.

Guidance for Wales available here (awaiting update).

Guidance for Northern Ireland available here. News item here.

Countries currently exempt from advice against all but essential travel are listed here but subject to change.

Briefing by Anthony Collins Solicitors for UKHCA members on travelling abroad and quarantine restrictions. See also guidance on employment rights when returning to the UK.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236015

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Northern Ireland COVID app to be extended to under 18sNorthern Ireland COVID app to be extended to under 18s

The StopCOVID NI app, which supports contact tracing in Northern Ireland will be available to under 18s from September.

More informabout available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236014

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Guide explains facts about 5GGuide explains facts about 5G

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport have produced a guide outlining the facts about 5G. This is intended to support people interacting with members of the public who may have concerns following conspiracy theories about 5G (including linking 5G to coronavirus).

The guide is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236011

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UKHCA responds to HSIB report on PPE guidanceUKHCA responds to HSIB report on PPE guidance

Inconsistent PPE guidance sadly contributed to a death of person using homecare from #COVID19 investigated by independent watchdog the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch.

Jane Townson, chief executive of the United Kingdom Homecare Association, told The Independent that of home care services were in an impossible position at the start of the pandemic.

She said: “HSIB is 100 per cent right. What was going on at the time was unsafe.

“The production of official guidance on personal protective equipment has been a shambles throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Guidance designed for different care settings has been consistently confusing for the organisations who needed to put it into practice.

“In the early stages, an absence of clarity led to inconsistent local interpretations being made by public health, local councils and community health organisations, all with different views about what was required.

“Even once guidance was published, dissemination was woefully inadequate. Guidance was published on the gov.uk website with little notice, frequently late on a Friday night, and provider associations received minimal notice to prepare briefings. There was a very high risk that care providers were not alerted to the changes unless they belonged to a membership association.”

She added: “In terms of the process going forward, what would be good would be to involve those who know about the service in the drafting stage, before the guidance is published when it possibly ends up causing extra work and is dangerous.”

Link to the Independent article

Colin Angel, UKHCA's Policy Director told the Guardian:

“It has been consistently confusing for people who had to put it into practice … It has relied heavily on cross-referencing between different online documents, they were using unfamiliar and ambiguous expressions and the information we needed was dotted across the gov.uk website.

“Because the guidance wasn’t clear, in the early stages, local councils, community health services and providers were having to interpret what they thought were the right answers. We have been worried throughout coronavirus that both people receiving care and the workforce would not be adequately protected by the correct use of PPE.”

Link to Guardian article


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UKHCA News ID: 236012

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UKHCA responds to nationwide study on care costsUKHCA responds to nationwide study on care costs

Two thirds of homeowners over 50 are worried about how they will pay their way in later life.

Speaking to This is Money, Colin Angel, policy director at United Kingdom Homecare Association, said:

'Few people plan for the cost of social care, because the balance of responsibility between the individual and the State is not understood. There are few incentives or financial products to encourage people to do so.

'The Government must make a decision on how to fund care in the future, considering the needs of people who do not have property assets and those who do.

'How to do this fairly is a political question, but tax relief would help people pay for their own care and changing the VAT status of essential welfare services from ‘exempt’ to ‘zero rated’ would enable social care providers to reclaim the VAT they pay on goods and services, with a minimal loss of revenue to the Treasury, enabling savings to be passed on to people who buy their own care.'

Link to This is Money article


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236013

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Trial payment for people on low income self-isolating in Blackburn, Darwen, Pendle and OldhamTrial payment for people on low income self-isolating in Blackburn, Darwen, Pendle and Oldham

The Government has announced that they intend to trial a payment to support people on low income to self-isolate. The trial will initially take place in Blackburn with Darwen, Pendle and Oldham from 1 September.

Those who test positive will receive £130 for a 10 day self-isolation period.

Other members of their household who have to self-isolate for 14 days will be entitled to a payment of £182. Non-household contacts advised to self-isolate through NHS Test and Trace will also be entitled to a payment of up to £182, tailored to the individual length of their isolation period (at a rate of £13 a day).

This is intended to support people who are unable to work from home while self-isolating. It will be available to people currently receiving either Universal Credit or Working Tax Credit.

Further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236010

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CQC blog - introduction of Transitional Regulatory Approach from SeptemberCQC blog - introduction of Transitional Regulatory Approach from September

The CQC have published blog updates reminding providers that the CQC will aim to make regulatory contact with all Adult Social Care providers by the end of March 2021. From September, the CQC will be evolving their approach to monitoring during the pandemic and moving towards a transitional regulatory approach, which may include visiting providers.

The CQC is expecting to launch a new strategy in May 2021, and will undertake a public consultation on this in January 2021.

Further information here and here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236008

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Strengthening Social Care AnalyticsStrengthening Social Care Analytics

The Health Foundation are inviting social care providers and commissioners to submit expressions of interest for funding. Their programme aims to support projects that can demonstrate how data analytics can be used to improve social care.

The deadline for applications is midday Friday 2 October 2020.

Further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236007

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Local Resilience Forums - updateLocal Resilience Forums - update

The emergency PPE supply channel to Local Resilience Forums will come to an end on 11 September, the Department for Health and Social Care has confirmed.

Local Resilience Forums are considering how best to ensure ongoing resilience. An additional delivery of PPE from the Department for Health and Social Care will be provided to Local Resilience Forums to ensure that there are reserves in case of an emergency increase in demand. A statement of intent has been released about the storage and use of any local reserve or stockpile.

As we reported previously, from 1 September adult social care providers will be able to order emergency PPE via the PPE Portal.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236006

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Best to plan for vaccine not being available this winterBest to plan for vaccine not being available this winter

England's Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty has suggested it is better to plan for a vaccine not being available this winter. He said: "So I think if we look forward a year I think the chances are much greater than if we look forward six months and we need to have that sort of timescale in mind."

Mr Whitty also said it is inevitable there will be local outbreaks. Politics Home

Food for thought for those involved in contingency planning for this winter.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236004

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UKHCA welcomes news of £588 million fund to help people return home from hospitalUKHCA welcomes news of £588 million fund to help people return home from hospital

People needing additional follow-on care after being discharged from hospital will be supported by a £588 million fund to cover adult social care or the immediate costs of care in their own home, the Government announced late yesterday.

The funding will provide up to 6 weeks of funded care and support for people being discharged from hospital. The additional support will include domiciliary care, community nursing services or care home costs.

Dr Jane Townson, CEO of UKHCA said:

“We welcome news of funding to support people’s recovery at home after discharge from hospital, as well as the emphasis on meeting people’s care needs in the community where possible. We are keen to work with the NHS and local authorities to ensure that the focus is on improving outcomes for people, rather than on time and task. We are also determined to ensure that homecare and support is purchased by commissioners in a way that allows fair recognition and reward of the workforce, as well as quality and sustainability of services.”

The funding announcement was accompanied by new hospital discharge service guidance for England, which replaces guidance issued in March, and information on hospital discharge for patients.

Guidance has also been published on NHS Continuing Healthcare assessments for those needing funded long-term care or support, which will be reintroduced from September.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236003

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List of exemptions to wearing face coverings in England extendedList of exemptions to wearing face coverings in England extended

The Government's guidance on face coverings: when to wear one and how to make your own, has been updated to include a longer list of when you do not need to wear a face covering.

Guidance - Face coverings: when to wear one and how to make your own

This guidance, which relates to England only, is updated frequently.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236005

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New resources and guidance summary, 21 AugustNew resources and guidance summary, 21 August

Skills for Care have published two new webinars on "Verification of Expected Death during COVID-19 with remote clinical support" and "Growing your staff to ease your workload" they are available here.

The Health and Safety Executive have issued guidance on hand sanitiser products and surface disinfectants, workplace risk assessment and HSE's role in test and trace.

Public Health England have published some marketing resources for the seasonal flu vaccination campaign, which are available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236002

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Professional care workers week online events 1-4 SeptemberProfessional care workers week online events 1-4 September

The Care Worker's Charity will be hosting virtual events for Professional Care Workers Week. Topics cover everything from wellbeing to the reform of social care.

Find out more here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236000

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News round-up, England, 21 AugustNews round-up, England, 21 August

The Health for Care Coalition have called on the Prime Minister in an open letter to 'fix social care'. They highlighted the need for widening eligibility, developing a workforce strategy, support for unpaid carers and stronger ties between the health and social care sectors.

The Health Foundation published a report highlighting the specific circumstances of the adult social care workforce in London, commenting, amongst other things, on pay rates. Dr Jane Townson, CEO of the United Kingdom Homecare Association commented that the report "misses the central point that many London councils purchase homecare by the minute. Some pay as little as £13.68 per hour. With commissioning like this, how can providers ever improve careworker terms & conditions?"

There have been calls for clarification on whether the families of health and social care workers who die from coronavirus will be made ineligible to claim other benefits, such as Universal Credit, if they receive a £60,000 sum under the NHS and Social Care Coronavirus Life Assurance Scheme.

On 19 August Matt Hancock suggested to the BBC Radio 4 Today's Programme that government Ministers were aiming to achieve mass, population-wide routine testing. However, no deadline was placed on when this might be achieved. Meanwhile, the Office for National Statistics national testing study is being expanded, alongside an additional £2 million grant to the ZOE COVID-19 Symptom Study app.

The All Party Parliamentary Group on Coronavirus has written to the Prime Minister urging the adoption of a zero-COVID strategy in England.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235999

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Local lockdowns in England: updateLocal lockdowns in England: update

The local lockdown in Leicester has eased slightly with some additional business venues being allowed to open (see details here). This will next be reviewed on 31st August.

In the North of England, additional measures have been agreed in Oldham, Pendle and Blackburn. These will include guidance, applicable from midnight on Saturday, to avoid public transport and to avoid socialising with anyone from outside your household. The restrictions will not apply in Wigan, Darwen and Rossendale, where restrictions will be lifted from 26 August. The existing restrictions will continue unchanged in other parts of Greater Manchester and East Lancashire.

Birmingham has been designated an area of enhanced support - meaning increased community engagement and additional testing. Birmingham City Council have restricted non-essential visits to care homes (see further information here).

In Northampton, workers associated with a particular factory are being asked to isolate for 2 weeks after a significant outbreak (guidance available here).

Further information here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235998

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New funding available for Traineeships from SeptemberNew funding available for Traineeships from September

From September 2020, employers offering new or expanded traineeship programmes may be eligible for a grant of up to £1,000 for up to 10 learners.

Further information on traineeships available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235997

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Assessing health and social care staff risks - guidance for managers in WalesAssessing health and social care staff risks - guidance for managers in Wales

Key points for managers in Wales have been issued on how they can help protect their staff by using the COVID-19 Workforce Risk Assessment Tool. Key points for managers

The guidance on the COVID-19 workforce risk assessment tool is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235993

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Travel restrictions update: Austria, Croatia and Trinidad and TobagoTravel restrictions update: Austria, Croatia and Trinidad and Tobago

Austria, Croatia and Trinidad and Tobago are no longer exempt from the FCO advice against all non-essential international travel. In Scotland, Switzerland will also no longer be exempt. However, due to a decrease in cases, Portugal will be added to the exemption list for all UK administrations.

This will be effective from 4am on Saturday 22 August.

Care workers returning from countries which are not on the exempt destinations list, will be required to self-isolate for fourteen days on return to the UK.

In England see news item here and guidance here.

In Scotland see news item here and guidance here.

Guidance for Wales available here (awaiting update).

Guidance for Northern Ireland available here. News item here.

Countries currently exempt from advice against all but essential travel are listed here but subject to change.

Briefing by Anthony Collins Solicitors for UKHCA members on travelling abroad and quarantine restrictions. See also guidance on employment rights when returning to the UK.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235994

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CQC update on equal access to hospital care and treatmentCQC update on equal access to hospital care and treatment

CQC have published an update for all providers reminding them of their duties to ensure equal access to hospital care and treatment for everyone, including disabled and older people living in the community during the pandemic.

See here for further details.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235995

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Advice on choosing digital learning and learning management systemsAdvice on choosing digital learning and learning management systems

The Care Software Providers' Association (CASPA) has issued a Whitepaper on digital learning and learning management systems within care organisations, which provides guidelines drawn from best practice of registered services, including what works best, what risks to consider and how to avoid them, and what to look for in a supplier.

Digital Learning & Learning Management Systems within Care Organisations

England focused, the Whitepaper may be of interest to providers elsewhere in the UK.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235992

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Welsh government publish new coronavirus control planWelsh government publish new coronavirus control plan

The Welsh Government have published a new plan that outlines how coronavirus risk will be managed in Wales. This incorporates preventative measures, as well as guidelines on how responses to local outbreaks will be managed.

You can find the control plan here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235991

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Report highlights impact of COVID-19 on council financesReport highlights impact of COVID-19 on council finances

A report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies has found that COVID-19 has seriously affected the finances of English councils.

The IFS say councils forecast spending pressures of £4.4 billion and non-tax income pressures of £2.8 billion in 2020-21. Taken together, this equates to a financial hit equal to 13.0% of pre-crisis expenditure. Adult social care accounts for £1.8 billion of the spending pressures.

The research found there is significant variation in forecast pressures across councils, especially for non-tax income.

COVID-19 and English council funding: how are budgets being hit in 2020-21?


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 235990

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Virtual visits offered to social care centres of digital innovationVirtual visits offered to social care centres of digital innovation

NCF's Hubble Project, funded by NHS Digital's Digital Pathfinders Programme, is intended to help care providers in England understand the benefits of technology, how to build a business case for investment, and how to successfully introduce, use and evaluate technology.

The project offers senior decision makers the chance to virtually visit 'innovation hubs' (via webinars). The sessions cover a wide range of technology so that they will be of value to all care providers, regardless of where they are on the digital journey. The hubs are b