UKHCA

United Kingdom Homecare Association
Raising the standard for homecare for over 25 years

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King's Fund Publish report into social care fundingKing's Fund Publish report into social care funding

The King's Fund has published a full length report into social care funding. The report outlines the current financial system for social care as well as evaluating the positives and negatives of other potential means for funding care.

The full report can be downloaded from the Kings Fund website.

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New strategy for social care research launchesNew strategy for social care research launches

Social Care Wales have launched a new initiative aiming to improve research into matters of importance for social care in Wales. The new 5 year plan seeks to develop research in developing the social care workforce, improving the collection and use of data, and involving the public in social care research.

The full report can be accessed via the Social Care Wales website.

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New domiciliary care worker registration guide for employersNew domiciliary care worker registration guide for employers

Social Care Wales has published a short guide for employers on the new domiciliary care worker registration requirements. The guide explains who needs to be registered, when they need to be registered by and what this will mean for you as an employer.

The full guide can be accessed via the Social Care Wales website.

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Apologies - UKHCA emails blocked by third-party softwareApologies - UKHCA emails blocked by third-party software

Some of UKHCA's out-going e-mails are being blocked by third-party software. This has affected a number of other organisations since 12 February 2018 and we are working with the provider to get this resolved. If you have been expecting e-mail correspondence from UKHCA on an urgent matter and have not received the information you expected, please accept our apologies and contact us on 020 8661 8188.

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Online registration now available with Care Inspectorate WalesOnline registration now available with Care Inspectorate Wales

Care Inspectorate Wales (formerly CSSIW) are now offering online registration and re-registration as required under the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016. Domiciliary care agencies will be required to re-register with CIW by the 2nd April. CIW will be sending out information to providers directly in phases throughout the next few months.

More information on registration and re-registration can be found on the CIW website.

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BEIS launch consultation on enforcement of employment rightsBEIS launch consultation on enforcement of employment rights

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has launched a consultation looking at implementing recommendations on enforcing employment rights as highlighted in the Taylor Review into modern working practices. BEIS are seeking views on a number of recommendations including simplifying the enforcement process, who should be responsible for enforcement whether the burden of proof should be reversed.

The consultation document can be found on the BEIS website. The deadline for responses will be 16th of May 2018.

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Government criticised for inaction on England's social care workforceGovernment criticised for inaction on England's social care workforce

UKHCA welcomes today's NAO report which criticises Government inaction on England's social care workforce. Colin Angel, Policy Director at the UKHCA, commented:

'The National Audit Office rightly calls time on the Department of Health and Social Care's consistently 'hands-off' approach to the social care market and its workforce. The absence of a published strategy for the social care workforce highlighted by NAO should be an embarrassment to Government, but a strategy is only useful if it leads to decisive action.'

The NAO report adds weighty evidence to repeated calls for Government to establish how much funding the social care sector needs and to produce a robust and properly funded national workforce strategy that will support the growth in careworker numbers required to meet increasing demand. Full UKHCA press release.

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Government launches consultation on workforce transparency and zero-hours contractsGovernment launches consultation on workforce transparency and zero-hours contracts

In response to last year's 'Taylor Review' of modern work practices, the Government has launched a consultation on the workforce, including zero-hour contracts. The consultation seeks views on whether employees on flexible, or zero-hours, contracts should have the right to request a more stable contract of employment from their employer.

Full details of how to respond to the consultation, and the consultation document, can be found on then Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) website.

Responses must be submitted before 23rd May 2018.

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New consultation launched on Employment StatusNew consultation launched on Employment Status

To help formulate Government strategy on the workforce, the Government have launched a consultation into how Employment Status could, or should, be clarified and communicated to employers and workers. The consultation seeks to inform legislation aiming to identify, and codify, the differences in status and rights between employees and workers.

Full details of how to respond to the consultation, which closes on 1 June 2018, and the consultation document, can be found on then Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) website.

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BEIS launch consultation on agency worker recommendationsBEIS launch consultation on agency worker recommendations

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has launched a consultation looking at implementing recommendations on agency workers as highlighted in the Taylor Review into modern working practices. Areas for consideration include clarity on rates of pay and any deductions made to worker pay, and clarity on who is responsible for paying temporary workers for the work they have done.

The consultation document can be found on the BEIS website. The deadline for responses will be 9th of May 2018.

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Government set to improve rights of flexible workersGovernment set to improve rights of flexible workers

The Government is to adopt most of the recommendations of the Taylor review of employment practices, according to its response issued today on improving the rights of flexible workers. The Government is to ask the Low Pay Commission to look into setting a higher National Minimum Wage for workers on zero hours contracts. UKHCA will give evidence on behalf of members to the LPC, in the usual manner.

More about the proposals, and associated four consultations, which will need to be studied carefully, from: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/government-response-to-the-taylor-review-of-modern-working-practices BBC news article

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Additional £150 million for adult social careAdditional £150 million for adult social care

In a written ministerial statement issued 6th February 2018, Sajid Javid (Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government) announced further funding for adult social care.

He said there would be an additional £150 million in 2018-19 in the Adult Social Care Support Grant - money from the anticipated underspend in existing departmental budgets. He added that this will not affect existing revenue commitments made to local government.

The funding will be allocated according to relative needs and the Government expects councils use it to build on their progress so far in supporting sustainable local care markets.

Read the full statement here

 

 

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New care standards coming into effect from April 2018New care standards coming into effect from April 2018

The Care Inspectorate has announced that they are on track to roll out the new care standards from April 2018 across Scotland. The standards will be implemented incrementally throughout 2018, starting with care homes for older people, before expanding into other care settings through 2018/19. UKHCA will pass on more details on the care standards in relation to care at home when they become available.

Further information can be found on the Care Inspectorate website.

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Update on CQC registration requirementsUpdate on CQC registration requirements

Members will be aware that as part of their Next Phase of Regulation consultation held in 2017, CQC proposed to revise the criteria for defining a provider that will need to be registered with CQC.

As a result of the consultation, as well as registering services at location level, CQC will begin to register entities are that are 'accountable' for care.

CQC have defined accountable entities as those that are accountable (either directly or through other legal entities or contractual arrangements) for the carrying on of regulated activities, where that direction or control has the effect of rendering the organisation accountable for the quality and safety of those activities, even where responsibility for delivering care sits with others.

CQC plan to implement the new registration requirements starting with homecare providers in 2018/2019.

CQC have confirmed the new requirements will not apply to franchisors.

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MPs launch inquiries into small businessesMPs launch inquiries into small businesses

Two new inquiries have been launched on small businesses. The House of Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee are investigating whether there is enough government support for small businesses to boost productivity. MPs want to know if there is sufficient access to good quality management training and protection from unfair treatment by large companies, like late payment. The deadline for responses is 8 March 2018.

Separately, the Treasury Committee is looking at SME finance - competition in the market, funding sources, including crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending, and current regulatory protection.

More from: www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/business-energy-industrial-strategy/news-parliament-2017/small-business-inquiry-17-19/ 

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Social Care Wales publish response to major consultationSocial Care Wales publish response to major consultation

Social Care Wales has published a summary of responses to their recent consultation, 'Transforming Care in the 21st Century', as well as providing information on next steps for registration fees and care worker qualifications. Social Care Wales will be increasing their fees as set out in the consultation, but will be increasing the registration fee for care workers at a lower rate than was initially proposed. The proposals for care worker qualifications will be going ahead as outlined in the document.

The response by Social Care Wales can be found on their website.

UKHCA's response to the consultation can be accessed via our consultations page.

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CQC update medication FAQ'sCQC update medication FAQ's

The CQC have updated their bank of resources on medication administration and training. There are a number of individual documents dealing with the most frequently asked questions with regards to medication issues, including administration, disposal, storage, controlled drugs and training.

All of the medication FAQs can be accessed via the CQC website.

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CQC - New guidance on assessing financial viability of providersCQC - New guidance on assessing financial viability of providers

CQC is changing how it will assess the financial viability of providers. From 12 February 2018 they will ask all providers to submit a statement of financial viability in the form of a statement letter from a financial specialist. This could be an accountancy, bank or financial services firm. CQC say this has been introduced to provide high level consistency and transparency in the way they assure themselves that providers are meeting Regulation 13 of the CQC (Registration) Regulations 2009. They also say it will support their proportionate risk based approach to registration.

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Ban on credit card charges now in forceBan on credit card charges now in force

Businesses in the UK are no longer allowed to surcharge customers for paying with credit and debit cards as of the 13th of January. This ruling also applies to paying for items with companies like PayPal.

Further information can be found on the gov.uk website.

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Issues facing providers of social care at home to older residents in rural EnglandIssues facing providers of social care at home to older residents in rural England

Rural England has published a research paper looking at the issues facing providers of homecare. The paper covers the following areas:

  • Analysis of the current and future homecare needs of older people in Rural England in the context of demographic and health trends;
  • Summarising some of the key elements of The Care Act and other selected legislation relating to Social Care;
  • Exploring the perspectives of Local Authorities and other care providers in the context of case studies of three contrasting rural areas (Cornwall, Shropshire and North Yorkshire).

A link to the paper from Rural England can be found here.

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Social care leaders highlight risks from lack of funding for sleep-in liabilitiesSocial care leaders highlight risks from lack of funding for sleep-in liabilities

UKHCA has joined with other social care leaders to highlight the significant financial risk posed by the absence of funding to meet back pay liabilities, resulting from a change in the law concerning sleep-ins. A joint letter published in the Observer says the situation is causing widespread anxiety for carers and those who use care services. Letter to Observer published 29 January 2018.

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Joint inquiry launched into long-term funding and provision of adult social careJoint inquiry launched into long-term funding and provision of adult social care

The Commons Communities and Local Government and Health Committees have launched a joint inquiry on the long-term funding and provision of adult social care in England, which will contribute to the Green Paper. The deadline for written submissions, which should be no more than 3000 words and submitted online, is 7 March 2018. The inquiry will examine:

  • How to fund social care sustainably for the long term (beyond 2020), bearing in mind in particular the interdependence of the health and social care systems; and
  • The mechanism for reaching political and public consensus on a solution.

How to send a written submission to the long-term funding of adult social care inquiry

UKHCA members are invited to send us their views by 23 February 2018, for consideration in our response. Please email policy@ukhca.co.uk

 

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Care Workers Charity is making an impactCare Workers Charity is making an impact

The Care Workers Charity (CWC) supports the basic welfare of current, former and retired care workers. That's anyone who works in a registered care service in the UK. The charity has a vision that no care worker will ever face financial hardship alone. Support is offered in the form of hardship grants, and online information and advice.

For more information about CWC and how to get involved, see: www.thecareworkerscharity.org.uk/ or read their first impact report

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Caroline Dinenage MP confirmed Care Minister, as social care role is upgradedCaroline Dinenage MP confirmed Care Minister, as social care role is upgraded

Caroline Dinenage MP is Minister of State for Care, with a brief that includes overseeing all aspects of adult social care, including dementia, loneliness and disabilities, hospital care quality and patient safety, community health services and health and social care integration. This represents a welcome upgrading of the care brief, formerly held by a junior minister. We understand the new Care Minister will take forward the green paper on adult social care, with a team that has transferred to DHSC from the Cabinet Office.

Jackie Doyle-Price MP becomes Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Mental Health and Inequalities. Stephen Barclay MP is Minister of State for Health, and Steve Brine MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Public Health and Primary Care.

Department for Health and Social Care ministerial responsibilities: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-of-health-and-social-care

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Councils must meet all assessed care needs of service usersCouncils must meet all assessed care needs of service users

In a recent decision, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman in England has said councils should not ask people which of their needs should be met. An investigation by the Ombudsman found a man was placed in this situation, incurring him more than £17,000 in costs, by Northamptonshire County Council.

The Ombudsman is now asking the council to accept its faults and put things right, while reminding all councils in England of their duty to meet all service users' eligible needs. Read more about the Ombudsman's decision here.

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NISCC launch easy-read standards of conductNISCC launch easy-read standards of conduct

NISCC have published an easy- read version of the Standards of Conduct and Practice for Social Workers and Social Care Workers. The easy read standards have been specifically developed for service users, to enable them to understand the level of care they can expect to receive from their social care worker and what to do if they are not happy with their standard of care.

The new documents can be downloaded from the NISCC website.

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Department of Health warns of intense pressure on health and social careDepartment of Health warns of intense pressure on health and social care

Senior Department of Health officials have given a briefing to MLAs on the intense pressures and challenges facing the health and social care sector in Northern Ireland. The officials stressed the need for transformation in the sector, although this seemed to be primarily focused on health services.

Further details can be found on the Department of Health website.

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Report finds transformation funds used for day-to-day pressuresReport finds transformation funds used for day-to-day pressures

The National Audit Office has issued a report on NHS sustainability and transformation which concludes that £1.8bn additional funding for financial stability has been spent on current pressures instead. The NAO suggested that "Repeated short-term funding-boosts could turn into the new normal, when the public purse may be better served by a long-term funding settlement that provides a stable platform for sustained improvements". More from: Sustainability and transformation in the NHS (pdf - 1248KB) and Sustainability and transformation in the NHS Summary (pdf - 141KB) NAO Press Release Comment in Guardian

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January 2018 Homecarer is now available to downloadJanuary 2018 Homecarer is now available to download

In this issue: UKHCA writes about a recent webinar for council commissioners; Trevor Brocklebank, UKHCA's new Chair formerly introduces himself; Bridget Warr, UKHCA's CEO, discusses how homecare issues are being moved forward to shape the future of care; a special sensory impairment section featuring articles written by RNIB, British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists and Sense offering advice to carers on how they can help service-users; UKHCA's Policy Director, Colin Angel talks about recruitment and retention: Towergate Insurance writes about reducing risk and the costs of your insurance; Anthony Collins Solicitors explains what procurement is and what it could mean for homecarer providers and we present a round-up in the national reports of announcements and developments related to homecare.

January 2018 Homecarer edition

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CQC prepared to postpone routine inspections where services have winter pressuresCQC prepared to postpone routine inspections where services have winter pressures

CQC have said they will pause some routine inspections where hospital staff are busy coping with respiratory illness and influenza. Inspections responding to concerns about quality or safety will go ahead as planned. CQC say 'the majority of Adult Social Care inspections are carried out on an unannounced basis in response to risk and to follow up concerns. As such, the planned inspection schedule will not change but will be kept under constant review and if CQC receive a notification of a flu or norovirus outbreak at a location it will be amended accordingly.'

Normal service is expected in February, subject to system review. More from: http://www.cqc.org.uk/news/stories/cqc-responds-increased-pressure-health-social-care-pausing-some-routine-inspections

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Ministerial lead for loneliness appointedMinisterial lead for loneliness appointed

Minister for Sport and Civil Society Tracey Crouch MP has been appointed ministerial lead on loneliness. The Prime Minister said the new minister would work with the Jo Cox Commission, businesses and charities and lead a cross-government group which would develop a first strategy on preventing loneliness. The initiative will include a dedicated fund for government to work with charitable trusts, foundations, and others to stimulate innovative solutions. Up to 9 million people in Britain say loneliness affects them, including older people, family carers and those who have been bereaved.

More from: www.gov.uk/government/news/pm-commits-to-government-wide-drive-to-tackle-loneliness

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MPs call for improvements in NHS continuing care application process and fund oversightMPs call for improvements in NHS continuing care application process and fund oversight

MPs on the Public Accounts Committee say Government should improve the process for qualifying for, and oversight of, NHS continuing care. The PAC's report said 'too often people's care is compromised because no one makes them aware of the funding available, or helps them to navigate the hugely complicated process for accessing funding.' There is unacceptable variation between areas in the number of people assessed as eligible for funding, caused partly by clinical commissioning groups interpreting assessment criteria inconsistently. Oversight of funding has been poor and NHS England's call for large efficiency savings add to the financial pressure. Report

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Major review recommends a "revolution" in the way health and social care is delivered in WalesMajor review recommends a "revolution" in the way health and social care is delivered in Wales

Nine leading international experts, chaired by the former chief medical officer for Wales Dr Ruth Hussey, have published a report recommending ways to try to put the Welsh health and social care system on a stronger footing and advocating a new national transformation programme to drive forward changes.

Key recommendations include:

  • Shifting resources away from big hospitals, investing in new technology and giving patients more choice about how and where they want to be cared for.
  • Urgent action to address "critical" staff shortages.
  • More to be done to protect the wellbeing of those working in health and care.
  • More sophisticated methods" of listening to patients and those being cared for and more shared decision making with those it affects.
  • Building on the many great examples of quality improvements at local level with "many driven by heroic individuals in isolation due to lack of support and coordination".

Ministers have said that a new plan will take into account the review's recommendations.

You can read the full report here:

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Caroline Dinenage MP reported to be social care ministerCaroline Dinenage MP reported to be social care minister

The BBC News website is reporting that Caroline Dinenage MP has been appointed social care minister in Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt's team, a move that reinforces the importance of the adult social care green paper, due in summer 2017: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-42663223

The precise split of ministerial responsibilties has not yet been confirmed on the DHSC website after the Cabinet reshuffle, but should appear here shortly: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-of-health-and-social-care 

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Staffing and funding pressures in the NHS over the past decade must be addressedStaffing and funding pressures in the NHS over the past decade must be addressed

A blog by Siva Anandaciva, Chief Analyst at the King's Fund, examines what the latest national data says about how A&E departments are coping compared with previous winters.

In December 2017, A&E attendances were 3.7 per cent higher than in December 2016, and emergency admissions to hospital 4.5 per cent higher. Christmas Eve was the only day when the NHS met the target of the bed occupancy rate of below 85%.

Siva argues that the cumulative staffing and funding pressures in the NHS over the past decade should be addressed if A&E departments are to be given a fighting chance of maintaining performance over winter and throughout the year.

Read the King's Fund blog here

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CQC chief executive to step down in the summerCQC chief executive to step down in the summer

Care Quality Commission Chief Executive Sir David Behan has announced his intention to step down in summer 2018. He has spent six years at the helm of the regulator and now wishes to move on and make a contribution in a different way. CQC will be taking steps to recruit a replacement shortly, to oversee the organisation in the next stage of its development.

More from: www.cqc.org.uk/news/stories/sir-david-behan-announces-intention-step-down-summer

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Views sought on document naming standard for NHS digital recordsViews sought on document naming standard for NHS digital records

The Professional Record Standards Body (PRSB and the Royal College of Physicians Health Informatics Unit have published a survey seeking views from patients, carers, health and care professionals and industry representatives on a proposed model for document naming in the NHS.

The aim is to develop a standard for naming digital healthcare documents, so they can easily be found by clinicians and patients when accessing health records.

Care providers are asked to comment on the draft model in a survey that takes 10 minutes to complete and closes on 2 February 2018, before the PRSB seek endorsement of the final version.

Any questions to Lindsay Dytham, project manager, at informatics@rcplondon.ac.uk or email info@theprsb.org.

 The survey URL is: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/PRSBdocumentnaming

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Health and Social Care Secretary defends record on NHS winter planningHealth and Social Care Secretary defends record on NHS winter planning

In a debate on the NHS winter crisis on 10 January, Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt defended the Government's record on preparation for winter. On planning funding he said: "..as we come to the end of the five year forward view, we need to seek a consensus on the next stage for the NHS. We will need significantly more funding in the years ahead, and we need to build a national consensus on how to find that funding. My view is that we should try to do that for a 10-year period, not a five-year period". On social care, he said: ... "Monday's decision [on including social care explicitly in his job title and brief] means that policy leadership will come back to the Department of Health, which will help us to make even faster progress." Hansard

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Jeremy Hunt MP becomes Secretary of State for Health and Social CareJeremy Hunt MP becomes Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

As part of a Cabinet re-shuffle in Westminster, Jeremy Hunt MP now has explicit responsibility for both health and social care services, a change that probably signals his Department will take forward the green paper on adult social care, rather than the Cabinet Office.

Caroline Dinenage MP and Stephen Barclay MP were both appointed Minister of State at the Department of Health and Social Care, ministerial duties to be confirmed. Jackie Doyle-Price MP, Steve Brine MP and Lord O'Shaughnessy keep the role of Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health and Social Care, as it is now named. Philip Dunne is no longer a health minister.

See Our Ministers at: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-of-health-and-social-care

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Care Inspectorate open annual return processCare Inspectorate open annual return process

The Care Inspectorate has asked all providers to return an annual form to help them plan and carry out their inspections. They will be accepting submissions between 5th of January and 16th February 2018.

Further details, and the online form, can be accessed via the Care Inspectorate website.

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Scottish Government publish annual domiciliary care figuresScottish Government publish annual domiciliary care figures

The Scottish Government has published annual statistics relating to domiciliary care services in Scotland. The figures for 2016/17 include the number of people receiving homecare, total hours of care purchased by local authorities, and the number of, and expenditure on, direct payments.

The report can be accessed via the publications page.

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Welsh Government confirms domiciliary care worker registrationWelsh Government confirms domiciliary care worker registration

The Minister for Children and Social Care, Huw Irranca-Davies, has confirmed that the Register of Social Care Workers will open to domiciliary care workers in April 2018.

All domiciliary care workers will be required to be registered with Social Care Wales by April 2020. UKHCA will send out further details once they become available.

The Social Care Wales press release can be accessed via their website.

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Social Care Wales launch report on national care needsSocial Care Wales launch report on national care needs

Social Care Wales have published a report that aims to identify common care needs across Wales. The regional reports were jointly produced by the local authorities and local health boards with the support of communities, and the third and independent sectors.

The reports look at a wide range of age groups and seek to identify what is being done to meet care needs and how they can be further improved.

The full report can be downloaded from the Social Care Wales publications page.

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CSSIW will be changing its name to Care Inspectorate WalesCSSIW will be changing its name to Care Inspectorate Wales

From 15th January, CSSIW will be going by the name of Care Inspectorate Wales. Registration will not be affected by the change in name. The website and online resources will be updated over the coming months.

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Department of Health release domiciliary care figures for 2017Department of Health release domiciliary care figures for 2017

The Department of Health has published their annual report looking into domiciliary care in Northern Ireland. The bulletin presents information on the numbers of clients receiving domiciliary care, contact hours, domiciliary care visits and intensive domiciliary care provision.

Key facts and figures include:

-An estimated 261,652 contact hours of domiciliary care were provided by HSC Trusts in Northern Ireland, a decrease of 3% (7,231) from the survey week in 2016 (268,883).

-493,700 domiciliary care visits were provided to clients, 28% from the statutory sector and 72% from the independent sector.

-Over half (51%) of all domiciliary care visits provided to clients were between 16 and 30 minutes long. Over three in ten (31%) visits were 15 minutes or less and under one in five (18%) were more than 30 minutes long.

The full report can be accessed via the Department of Health website.

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Draft guideline on dementia assessment, management and support for people living with dementia and carersDraft guideline on dementia assessment, management and support for people living with dementia and carers

NICE is consulting on a draft guideline which looks at dementia assessment, management and support for people living with dementia and carers. Aimed at healthcare and social care professionals, commissioners, providers and people with dementia and their families, the draft guideline covers diagnosing and managing dementia, medication, palliative care and staff training. Short version of the guideline (33 pages)

The consultation page has the full version, plus information and supporting documents. The consultation closes on 13 February 2018. There is more information including an economic model which accompanies the guideline. NICE intends to produce resources to help implementation once the consultation is over.

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NHS England consulting on ending prescriptions for some OTC medicinesNHS England consulting on ending prescriptions for some OTC medicines

NHS England is consulting on ending prescriptions for some 'over the counter' remedies, such as dandruff, indigestion, mouth ulcer and travel sickness treatment. The consultation, which runs until 14 March 2018, lists 33 minor illnesses which have been identified as self-limiting or more suitable for self-care. There will also be four national engagements events for patients and the public plus webinars for representatives of patient groups and charities (details will be published in January at website).

NHS England says it is likely to publish guidance on OTC medicines, after the consultation. 

More on "NHS England consulting on ending prescriptions for some OTC medicines" Opens in new window

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NICE confirm decision not to review homecare guidelineNICE confirm decision not to review homecare guideline

NICE have decided not to update their guideline 'NG21 Home care: delivering personal care and practical support to older people living in their own homes' for the time being, after considering evidence and consulting with experts. The guideline was produced relatively recently, and comparatively little has changed.

NICE consulted on their decision at consultation page on the NICE website. They subsequently confirmed their original decision on 28 December 2017. Information about the decision has been published at website.



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UKHCA's response to the local government provisional settlementUKHCA's response to the local government provisional settlement

Read our Chief Executive's response to the local government provisional settlement which was announced on Tuesday 19 December.

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Changes to local authority finance announcedChanges to local authority finance announced

Communities and Local Government Secretary Sajid Javid has announced changes to the way local authorities in England are funded in the provisional local government settlement. The proposals would permit councils to keep 75% of the business rates they raise and grant a 1% increase in their powers to increase council tax. There is more information in Department for Communities and Local Government documents and Hansard, on Sajid Javid announcement and MPs' questions. A selection of responses and commentaries is below:

*Public Finance article

*Local Government Association: https://www.local.gov.uk/about/news/councils-responds-local-government-finance-settlement

* CIPFA: www.cipfa.org/about-cipfa/press-office/latest-press-releases/cipfa-responds-to-the-provisional-local-government-finance-settlement

* NHS Confederation: www.nhsconfed.org/media-centre/2017/12/missed-opportunity-local-government

* Guardian, includes quote from ADASS: www.theguardian.com/society/2017/dec/19/council-tax-bills-could-rise-100-a-year-government-relaxes-cap-sajid-javid

* BBC News: www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-42418402

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Interim report on first six local system reviews reveals a fragmented systemInterim report on first six local system reviews reveals a fragmented system

CQC have published an interim report of findings from the first six local system reviews, namely Halton, Bracknell Forest, Stoke-on-Trent, Hartlepool, Manchester and Trafford. The reviews look at whether health and social care commissioners are working together successfully and concludes more should be done to foster integration.

The findings show there is not enough social care capacity, including homecare, and commissioners are lacking robust planning systems to predict demand and shape markets. The report said people find moving between health and social care services confusing, and while staff are committed to providing the best experience for older people in their care, their efforts can be compromised by competing priorities of employing organisations and hinder the delivery of a 'whole system approach'.

Members are urged to participate in local reviews that will be carried out in 2018 so ministers receive the clearest possible picture of the reality of providing homecare in the current financial climate. More from: www.cqc.org.uk/publications/themes-care/our-reviews-local-health-social-care-systems

 



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First national health and care workforce strategyFirst national health and care workforce strategy

Health Education England has published a draft national health and care workforce strategy for England to 2027 and set out the significant challenges the NHS will face in meeting demand pressures over the next decade.

The strategy suggests that better productivity and transformation of services will be necessary if the NHS is to reduce the effect of substantial staff shortages by 2027. The draft strategy includes a section on adult social care from page 67, which looks at the shape of the workforce, the demand for social care, maximising recruitment and facing the challenges of the future.

Facing the Facts, Shaping the Future - A draft health and care workforce strategy for England to 2027

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Government responds to MPs' report on Brexit and health and social careGovernment responds to MPs' report on Brexit and health and social care

The Government has issued a response to the Health Committee's 'Brexit and health and social care - people and process' report, issued in April 2017. Written before the Government's 'breakthrough' deal with the European Commission in December 2017, the response attempts to reassure MPs that the Department of Health is undertaking sufficient contingency planning for the UK leaving the EU, and is suitably represented in negotiations. The response also acknowledges the importance of future staffing arrangements, and confirms the Department is working with the Migration Advisory Committee on this key issue.

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A Good Retirement: Public attitudes to the role of state and individual in retirementA Good Retirement: Public attitudes to the role of state and individual in retirement

Research by think tank Demos has found that 57% of the public in the UK believe the individual has greater responsibility than the Government in meeting care costs in retirement and a third believe the Government should cover the cost of care. By contrast, only 56% are saving for retirement costs, and only 5% are financially prepared for care costs in later life, and one in four social care is free. Demos called for a public awareness campaign and development of insurance models. Full report

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New Cyber Security Guide for social care providersNew Cyber Security Guide for social care providers

A new Cyber Security Guide is available for social care providers, developed by the Care Provider Alliance with the Social Care Programme at NHS Digital, with help from the Home Office (Cyber Aware Team) and the National Cyber Security Centre.

The guide covers safeguards that can be taken to avoid or reduce disruption from an attack on data, computers or mobile devices, and includes safeguarding confidentiality and privacy, and the availability and integrity of data.

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NHS England warns of increased risk of heart attack and stroke in the days immediately following a cold snapNHS England warns of increased risk of heart attack and stroke in the days immediately following a cold snap

As temperatures reach below freezing, NHS England is advising the public on ways of staying well this winter, as the number of people being admitted to A&E is likely to increase significantly due to the cold weather.

Keith Willett, NHS England National Director for Acute Care, said: "What the public are unaware of is the immediate knock on effect of the cold weather. Patients who have pre-existing conditions may not be aware that they are most at risk of falling ill in the days after temperatures drop."

The NHS is advising the public to take sensible precautions to ensure they minimise the after effects of extreme cold weather. Older people are advised to keep warm, both indoors and out. They should heat their homes to at least 18C, and there is still time to get their flu jabs. .

More information about how to stay healthy during winter can be found on NHS Choices website.

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Expert Advisory Panel for Adult Care and Support publishes reportExpert Advisory Panel for Adult Care and Support publishes report

The Expert Advisory Panel for Adult Care and Support has released a long-awaited report into the future of social care in Northern Ireland. The report, postponed up until recently, outlines a number of recommendations aimed at improving services including:

-The care and support sector should, at least, be a Living Wage sector in the short-term;

-Charging arrangements should be changed so that those who can afford to contribute towards the cost of their care do so;

-Commissioners and providers should work together to introduce a framework based on an agreed true cost of care that includes a 'sustainable return' for providers;

-RQIA could be given powers to regulate the professional care market including the oversight of a fair and agreed return; and

-Need for an explicit commitment from Trusts for improving the planning and supply of care and support services.

Further details, and the full report can be found on the Department of Health website.

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Regulations to prepare for the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016Regulations to prepare for the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016

Draft Regulations have now been laid before the Assembly and will be voted upon by Assembly Members. The new regulations cover requirements for provider registration, Responsible Individuals (RIs), and statutory guidelines for service providers and RIs on meeting service standard regulations.

Information and guidance has been compiled by CSSIW and can be accessed via their website. UKHCA will be sending out more information when available.

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CSSIW seek feedback on Code of Practice for InspectionCSSIW seek feedback on Code of Practice for Inspection

CSSIW have stated that they are looking for feedback from providers on their Code of Practice for Inspection. The document sets out the principles which CSSIW apply to inspection of services. As it currently stands, the Code of Practice for Inspection, and the Responding to Inspection Reports policy, are due to come into effect in April 2018.

The window for feedback closes on the 19th January. Further details can be accessed via the CSSIW consultation page.

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New qualifications for health and social careNew qualifications for health and social care

Qualifications Wales (QW) has commissioned the development of a new set of qualifications for people working in the health, social care and childcare sectors. From September 2019, these will replace what are currently levels 1, 2, 3 and 5 QCF diplomas.

QW have produced a short video to answer some commonly asked questions on the new qualifications.

More details can be found on the Social Care Wales website.

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MSPs to investigate impact of leaving the EU on health and social careMSPs to investigate impact of leaving the EU on health and social care

The Scottish Government's Health and Sport Committee is holding an inquiry into the impact of leaving the EU on health and social care in Scotland. MSPs will consider what the NHS and social care in Scotland could look like after the UK leaves the EU, how potential risks could be mitigated and how potential opportunities could be realised.

The Committee has drawn up a list of areas which may impact on health and social care, for example workforce issues, which are set out at: www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/CurrentCommittees/107148.aspx

The call for written evidence runs until 25 January 2018. Details of call for views MSPs intend to hear oral evidence from witnesses in March 2018.

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Department of Health publishes quarterly carer's statisticsDepartment of Health publishes quarterly carer's statistics

The Department of Health has published this quarter's statistics for carer assessments and re-assessments in Northern Ireland. A carer's assessment looks at each carer as an individual with their own personal circumstances, and will identify any particular needs they may have as a result. Both assessments and re-assessments have seen an increase since the last quarter.

Full figures and analysis can be found on the Department of Health website.

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Social Care sector in Northern Ireland worth almost £1bn to the economySocial Care sector in Northern Ireland worth almost £1bn to the economy

NISCC, along with providers and key employers, have produced two reports looking at the economic value of the social care sector, and how a shared vision of social care can be achieved. It is widely acknowledged through both reports that the sector is currently undervalued and that a new approach to creating a sustainable workforce is needed.

Both reports can be accessed via the NISCC information page.

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Cavendish Coalition reacts to breakthrough on EU negotiationsCavendish Coalition reacts to breakthrough on EU negotiations

Responding to the breakthrough in Brexit negotiations, Cavendish Coalition co-convenor, Danny Mortimer, said:
 
"We welcome the confirmation that the rights of EU citizens will be protected and that there will not be a hard border in Northern Ireland. This will give reassurance to the vital 165,000 EU health and social care workers currently dedicating their professional lives to our health care system.
 
"The next step is to ensure that any future immigration system uses public service value to assess skill levels and set entry requirements, rather than earnings. This would help to tackle the misleading assumption that the salary paid to a foreign-born worker is the main indicator of their value to the social care and health system."

UKHCA is a member of the Cavendish Coalition of health and social care organisations working to ensure the health and social care system can continue to meet its staffing needs following the UK's withdrawal from the EU.

 

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Health minister drops social care cap in favour of new limit in summer green paperHealth minister drops social care cap in favour of new limit in summer green paper

Health Minister Jackie Doyle-Price MP made a statement on social care in the House of Commons on 7 December which contained the Government's response to the Opposition day debate on 25 October.

The minister confirmed the Government's plans for a Green Paper on care and support for older people by summer 2018.

The social care cap of £72,500, due to be introduced in England from April 2018, has been dropped. The minister said: 'The Prime Minister has been clear that the consultation will include proposals to place a limit on the care costs that individuals face. To allow for fuller engagement and the development of the approach, and so that reforms to the care system and how it is paid for are considered in the round, we will not take forward the previous Government's plans to implement a cap on care costs in 2020.' Hansard report BBC News item

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EU breakthough may allow more investment in home prioritiesEU breakthough may allow more investment in home priorities

The Prime Minister, announcing the deal on leaving the EU recently, indicated the breakthrough would allow more to be invested in 'priorities at home', such as the NHS. 16-page joint report issued by EU negotiators and the UK Government.

The Prime Minister's comments about domestic priorities come as NHS Providers issue a winter briefing which shows hospitals are close to full stretch with Christmas approaching.

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Discussing and planning medicines supportDiscussing and planning medicines support

NICE and SCIE have issued a practical resource for managers of homecare services that provide medicines support based on the NICE guideline on 'Managing medicines for adults receiving social care in the community'.

The guide covers discussing, planning and reviewing medicines support, including developing a medicines policy and how services can meet CQC's requirement for proper and safe medicines management.

*NICE and SCIE Guide: Discussing and planning medicines support
*NICE Guideline: Managing medicines for adults receiving social care in the community
*Other guides are available at: NICE and SCIE quick guides

UKHCA Senior Campaigns Officer Duncan White commented: 'The guide should be useful for training purposes, particularly where it notes Medication Administration Records should contain accurate, up-to-date and accessible details of the support given for each medicine on every occasion it is provided, something CQC will be checking at inspection time.'

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UK has least generous state pension of any developed countryUK has least generous state pension of any developed country

Research by the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) suggests that full-time workers in the UK receive a state pension of 29% of previous earnings, compared with an average of 63% in other OECD countries, and more than 80% in Italy and the Netherlands.

When private pensions are included, the average UK pensioner receives 62% of previous earnings, an improvement but still lower than the OECD average of 69%. (The new single-tier pension will be worth 30% more than the old state pension, but as there is a long transition period, current retirees may not benefit.)

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CQC announce further eight local system reviewsCQC announce further eight local system reviews

CQC have announced they have been asked to conduct a further eight local system reviews. This is in addition to the eight that are ongoing, and four which have been completed and made available online (Bracknell Forest, Hartlepool, Halton and Stoke-on-Trent).

Each review looks at what is working well, and where there are opportunities to improve. CQC say they will report findings to the local authority area's health and wellbeing board and expect to produce an interim report of findings shortly, with a national report in due course.

More from: www.cqc.org.uk/publications/themes-care/our-reviews-local-health-social-care-systems#hide2

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Self-directed support take-up in Scotland remains 'woefully low'Self-directed support take-up in Scotland remains 'woefully low'

MSPs sitting on the Public Audit Committee have heard that only a quarter of disabled people in Scotland entitled to self-directed support (SDS) have taken up the option. Evidence given by third sector organisations suggested that a review was urgently needed as people were not routinely being offered a full choice, and lacked information about SDS. The Committee is due to hear from the Scottish Government on these concerns. More from: www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/CurrentCommittees/106127.aspx

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Public Accounts Committee to examine CQCPublic Accounts Committee to examine CQC

The House of Commons Public Accounts Committee is to examine the Care Quality Commission on 13 December 2017. This follows a report by the National Audit Office which concluded the regulator had improved in its work, but would need better digital systems to adopt a more risk-based approach. CQC and Department of Health representatives will also be asked about risk management. More information

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MPs resume inquiry into Sustainability and Transformation PartnershipsMPs resume inquiry into Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships

The Commons Health Committee have resumed their inquiry into Sustainability and Transformation Plans (now Partnerships), the five year plans for local health and social care services in England which point the way to integration by 2020. The inquiry addresses a range of points including how effective STPs have been in joining up health and social care, whether the demands on them are deliverable and what barriers there are to effective governance and implementation, and follows the publication of Next Steps on the NHS Forward View.

The Health Committee's earlier inquiry was cut short by the general election. The closing date is now 19 January 2018. UKHCA welcomes members' views on STPs - please email policy@ukhca.co.uk by 5 January 2018.

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UKHCA update 'Minimum Price for Homecare' documentUKHCA update 'Minimum Price for Homecare' document

UKHCA's minimum price for homecare services of £17.86 per hour allows full compliance with the National Minimum Wage and the delivery of sustainable homecare services to local authorities and the NHS.

The calculations in this latest version have been updated for the new National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage, which become effective on 1st April 2018. Equivalent calculations for the voluntary UK Living Wage, the Scottish Living Wage and the London Living Wage between November 2017 and October 2018 are also included.

The document can be accessed and download via the UKHCA downloads page.

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Care workers in Northern Ireland 'exhausted' by staff shortageCare workers in Northern Ireland 'exhausted' by staff shortage

A BBC investigation has reported that care workers in Northern Ireland are being left exhausted from work as a result of staff shortages. It also stated that, on the survey day in November, 88 patients were forced to stay in hospital while waiting for a care package. The Department of Health has stated that they expect to publish a long-awaited report on social care within the next few weeks.

The full story can be found on the BBC news website.

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CMO in Northern Ireland urges people to stay well this winterCMO in Northern Ireland urges people to stay well this winter

The Department of Health's Chief Medical Officer (CMO) has urged the public to take precautions over the winter period to stay well. In a statement released by the Department, some simple, practical steps were given to help people to prepare:

-wear warm clothes - layers are best; if outside in icy conditions, wear boots or shoes with suitable grips;

-Keep sufficient stocks of food and medicines;

-Check the weather forecast regularly;

-Take care outdoors, especially if roads and pavements are icy;

-Eat a balanced diet, including at least one hot meal a day;

-Heat all rooms used during the day - living room to around 18-21°C (65-70°F) and the rest of your house to at least 16°C (61°F);

-Service boilers and appliances annually by a registered engineer to protect from the dangers of carbon monoxide;

-Maintain contact with trusted callers, friends and relatives should you need assistance; keep your mobile phone charged;

-One simple step you can take to keep well this winter is to get the flu vaccination. For those who are 'at risk', flu can be a very serious, even life-threatening illness, which could result in hospital admission. Getting vaccinated against flu helps protect you and others around you. I encourage those in 'at risk' groups to avail of the free flu vaccination; and

-If you can, check in on an elderly or vulnerable friend or neighbour, look out for them during the winter months to make sure they are safe, warm and well. Older people and those with long term illnesses are particularly susceptible to the cold.

The full statement can be found on the Department of Health's website.

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UK Industrial Strategy plans for an ageing populationUK Industrial Strategy plans for an ageing population

The UK Government's new Industrial Strategy has identified the importance of planning for an ageing population, stating that by 2046 almost 1 in 4 people will be aged 65 or older. The strategy focuses on using technology to prolong independence and healthy lifestyles. No specific plans were laid out in relation to the social care sector as a whole, beyond the commitment to a social care Green Paper in the summer of 2018.

The full strategy paper can be accessed via the gov.uk website.

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NHS Scotland Chief Executive Report 2016/17 publishedNHS Scotland Chief Executive Report 2016/17 published

NHS Scotland has published their annual report which presents an assessment of the performance of NHS Scotland in 2016/17 and describes key achievements and outcomes. The report also charts progress towards the Government's '2020 Vision for Health and Social Care.'

The full report can be accessed via the Scottish Government's publications page.

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More details of extension of NHS seasonal ‘flu vaccination to homecare workersMore details of extension of NHS seasonal ‘flu vaccination to homecare workers

NHS England has released further information concerning extending the 'flu vaccination scheme to homecare workers. Their letter, dated 22 November 2017, confirms that the scheme is now active and gives further details about how and where to access 'flu jabs for homecare workers. See: www.ukhca.co.uk/pdfs/NHS_England_Flu_Vaccinations_2017.pdf.

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Autumn Budget confirms bigger budgets for Scotland, Wales and Northern IrelandAutumn Budget confirms bigger budgets for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

As part of the Chancellor's Autumn Budget, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will see an increase in their budgets. The planned increases through to 2020-21 are as follows:

-Scottish Government's budget will increase by £2 billion;

-Welsh Government's budget will increase by £1.2 billion; and

-The budget for a Northern Ireland Executive will increase by £660 million.

Although there is now news yet on how the devolved administrations will spend this new funding, we urge members to contact their local politician and demonstrate how this money could be used for front-line social care services.

A link to the full Autumn Budget can be found on the gov.uk website.

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Autumn Budget 2017 overlooks social careAutumn Budget 2017 overlooks social care

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, presented his first Autumn Budget to Parliament on 22 November 2017. UKHCA has issued a media release expressing huge disappointment that the Budget failed to mention funding for social care services: www.ukhca.co.uk/mediastatement_information.aspx?releaseID=234402

Selected coverage and analysis:

BBC News summary: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-42056452

Chancellor's Speech: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/autumn-budget-2017-philip-hammonds-speech

Treasury Red Book: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/661480/autumn_budget_2017_web.pdf

Treasury - 25 things you need to know: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/autumn-budget-2017-25-things-you-need-to-know

Institute for Fiscal Studies

Hazlewoods, chartered accountants

 

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Last chance for older people to give their views on housingLast chance for older people to give their views on housing

The House of Commons Communities and Local Government Committee is looking into the difficulties older people have in moving and staying in their own home, and there is a last chance for people to send their views to the Committee. The Committee's questions, directed at older people, are:

  • Have you or a family member recently moved home, are thinking about it, or have decided not to?
  • Do you have any experience of housing for older people you believe is important you wish to share?
  • Have you moved home recently or are you thinking about it? If so, why?
  • Have you thought about moving and then decided not to? Why?
  • Do you know where to find out about moving house? Have you ever asked for advice?
  • How have you found getting the money to move?
  • Have you tried to adapt your home to make it more accessible? How did you do it? Did you try to get advice about how?
  • How do you feel your home affects your health and wellbeing?
  • Has your health and wellbeing changed after you moved house?

To respond to the Committee, please complete the comment form by 27 November 2017.

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CSSIW publishes strategic plan for 2017-2020CSSIW publishes strategic plan for 2017-2020

CSSIW has published their latest strategic plan to cover the period between 2017 and 2020. The plan outlines how CSSIW will move towards achieving goals set out in the Welsh Government's national strategy 'Prosperity for All.' It also aims to review and enhance online services, improve the use of feedback in the inspection process, and develop a new complaints process.

The publication, and further details, can be found on the CSSIW website.

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Welsh Government launches 'My Winter Health Plan'Welsh Government launches 'My Winter Health Plan'

The Welsh Government has formally launched a new initiative designed to easy winter pressures on health and social care services. NHS Wales Chief Executive Dr Andrew Goodall said:

"The aim of My Winter Health Plan is to provide people with chronic conditions, or their carers, with a form that they can display on their fridge or in an easy to see part of their home. If they then receive a home visit in an emergency from a health and care professional, family member or neighbour, that person will have useful key information to help them make a more informed decision on what action to take. It is anticipated that this will help avoid unnecessary journeys to hospital."

The full press release can be found on the Welsh Government website.

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Older people with learning disabilities guideline consultationOlder people with learning disabilities guideline consultation

The draft NICE guideline on ˜Care and support of older people with learning disabilities" is now out for consultation. An easy read format is also available.

The guideline aims to ensure that older people with learning disabilities are given the help they need to access a range of services as they reach old age so they can live healthy and fulfilled lives.

The closing date is 15 December 2017 at 5pm.

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Review by ombudsman shows complaints can improve social careReview by ombudsman shows complaints can improve social care

A review of social care complaints for 2016/17 published by the local government and social care ombudsman shows the number of complaints about independent care providers in England have continued the upward trend of previous years.

The headline figures reveal that complaints and enquiries about adult social care increased by 3% since 2015/16 and complaints about care arranged privately with independent providers increased by 16%. The ombudsman upheld 65% of complaints about homecare. Complaints relating to adult safeguarding saw the steepest climb, up 27% from 2015-16.

Michael King, the local government and social care ombudsman, said the safeguarding figures were "worrying". But he welcomed the rise in independent care complaints as evidence of a "learning culture" among providers, which he said were getting better at responding to complaints and encouraging people to refer them.

The review points providers to their website which has a number of resources to help support good complaint handling. Also on offer are two courses for social care providers, which the ombudsman developed together with Somerset Care.

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Understanding intermediate care, including reablementUnderstanding intermediate care, including reablement

SCIE and NICE have produced a new quick guide for people using intermediate care services and their families to help ensure everyone can understand what to expect from intermediate care and reablement services. The guide includes an overview of the types of service, four stages of intermediate care and professionals involved in providing care. Blog introducing the guide

Interactive web resource: Understanding intermediate care

Register to download free SCIE resources: www.scie.org.uk/prevention/independence/intermediate-care/for-service-users

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MPs call for cross-party convention on health and social careMPs call for cross-party convention on health and social care

A group of 90 MPs, including senior Conservatives and former Cabinet ministers, has written to the Prime Minister and Chancellor asking for short term pressures on health and social care to be addressed in the Budget. The group also called on Government to endorse the group's proposal to set up a cross-party convention to deliver a sustainable, long-term settlement.

More from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-42029445

Letter to Prime Minister dated 18 November 2017: https://twitter.com/normanlamb/status/931868314552463361

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Care and Support Alliance PetitionCare and Support Alliance Petition

Today more than 1 million people in the country are currently abandoned by the care system which is unable to provide them with the basic care they deserve, like help getting dressed and washed. The Care and Support Alliance, of which UKHCA is a member alongside 80 leading charities and organisations, is launching its petition to highlight the failure of the care system. The petition is open to anyone in the UK.

Support the petition by visiting: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/204631

The Alliance is working to highlight that the basic care needs of disabled adults and older people being neglected at a national level. This is a problem in all areas of the country and something needs to change. For 20 years politicians have promised to act but failed - enough is enough, people need proper care, and it is time for a social care green paper.

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CQC survey on Experts by Experience ProgrammeCQC survey on Experts by Experience Programme

The Care Quality Commission are carrying out an online survey into procurement of the Experts by Experience Programme. (The survey closes on 11 December 2017.)

More information about the Expert by Experience programme is in on CQC's website.

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Social care green paper due "next Summer"Social care green paper due "next Summer"

In his announcement today, Damian Green, First Secretary of State and Minister for the Cabinet Office said that the social care green paper will be published by summer 2018. The green paper will focus specifically on the care of older people and is expected to cover a wide range of issues such as housing, technology and welfare, as well as social care and funding.

In the meantime, the government will be consulting widely with the sector and taking advice from independent experts.

Bridget Warr, UKHCA Chief Executive said:

"Whilst we are disappointed with what appears to be a further delay to the green paper, UKHCA welcomes the plans to consult with the sector. We will be active in providing a strong voice for (and with) homecare providers. UKHCA will be pressing for the green paper to cover a long-term funding solution for all people who use social care services, whether purchased by the state or privately, alongside measures to support workforce capacity and skills."

Once the green paper is published in summer 2018, it will be subject to a full public consultation.

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Health and social care system not working in Stoke-on-TrentHealth and social care system not working in Stoke-on-Trent

CQC has published its findings following a local system review of health and social care in Stoke-on-Trent. The report is highly critical of both the council and the Clinical Commissioning Group and says that people have suffered avoidable harm as the result of delays in being discharged from hospital.

In a wide ranging report, CQC describe a lack of whole system strategic planning with little collaboration between local leaders. Although working relationships have started to improve, the report shows there has been limited joint working, reactive commissioning and a failure to engage with social care providers. The review describes how the NHS, in reaction to pressures to discharge people from hospital, commissioned homecare services and as a result destabilised the local homecare market.

CQC's local system reviews will be discussed in more detail in the January 2018 edition of Homecarer. In the meantime, more information can be found on CQC's website.

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Half of EU doctors considering leaving the UKHalf of EU doctors considering leaving the UK

A survey by the British Medical Association (BMA) has found that nearly half of doctors from the European Union (EU) who are currently working in the UK are considering leaving following the EU referendum result. Almost one in five already have solid plans to relocate elsewhere.

Around 12,000 doctors who work in the NHS originally qualified in the EU. This is 7.7% of the UK medical workforce; many more are in public health or in academic medicine. The BMA say that recruiting from Europe has been vital in dealing with staff shortages in UK health services, ensuring the NHS can provide high-quality, reliable and safe patient care.

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Extension of free vaccination to paid homecare workers in EnglandExtension of free vaccination to paid homecare workers in England

NHS England have issued further details about the extension of free vaccination this winter to paid homecare workers in England's independent and voluntary sector. A letter dated 8 November 2017 provides:

- NHS England's explanation of how the new scheme fits with employers' occupational health schemes;

- Confirmation that community pharmacies registered to deliver the seasonal 'flu advanced service and GP practices signed up to provide a new Enhanced Service will be delivering the free vaccinations;

- Which categories of staff are eligible for this extended service.

- How eligible staff should prove their eligibility under the scheme.

The letter does not give a start date for the scheme and providers are specifically requested to ask staff not to present themselves for vaccination under the scheme until there is a confirmed commencement date.

We are in regular contact with NHS England about getting the scheme started as soon as possible, and will email members when there is further news.

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Community Health Exchange publish integration briefingCommunity Health Exchange publish integration briefing

The Community Health Exchange (CHEX) has published a policy briefing on health and social care integration. It explains what the new arrangements are, and how community and voluntary organisations might contribute to the planning of local health and social care provision.

The full briefing can be accessed via their website.

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Care Inspectorate publish blog on new complaints processCare Inspectorate publish blog on new complaints process

The Care Inspectorate has published a new blog post giving details and advice on their new complaints processes and procedures, which came into effect on the 1st of November. The blog discusses how complaints should be handled and how investigations will be carried out.

The full blog can be found on the Care Inspectorate website.

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Young adults living in older people's care homes should have more choiceYoung adults living in older people's care homes should have more choice

A new survey by the MS Society and Care and Support Alliance has found that England's social care system is failing thousands of younger disabled adults who are living in older people's care homes. The charities say the homes were not designed for younger adults and can't meet their needs.

The study was based on FOI requests to local authorities in England, asking how many people aged 18-64 are living in care homes for residents aged 65 or older. It found almost one in seven younger disabled adults in residential care could be in homes for older people. The charities called for more funding for the social care system so people have a choice of care, whatever their age and needs.

Today, 14 November 2017, some people affected by system failings are visiting Parliament to meet MPs and share experiences. The MS Society and CSA say that if you have experience of not getting the care you or a family member or friend needs, please share your story at: http://careandsupportalliance.com/contact-us/your-story/

To sign CSA's petition calling for the Government to address the social care crisis, see: www.careandsupportalliance.com/petition

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A 1% increase NI contributions could fund social careA 1% increase NI contributions could fund social care

New research from Independent Age, the older people's charity, and the IPPR, the UK's progressive think tank suggest that a rise in National Insurance contributions by 1% would immediately raise up to £5 billion towards social care funding.

This option tested as the most progressive and politically achievable option when compared with other options for filling the funding gap including increasing inheritance tax, removing the triple lock on pensions or means-testing the Winter Fuel Payment.

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Welsh Government publish adult care statisticsWelsh Government publish adult care statistics

The Welsh Government has published their annual report presenting information on assessments of need for care and support plans. This information includes the total number of adults that received local authority funded domiciliary care in 2016/17.

Further information and figures can be found on the Welsh Government website.

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Business Services Organisation launches fraud awareness campaign in NIBusiness Services Organisation launches fraud awareness campaign in NI

The BSO has launched a new initiative aimed at combating fraud in the health and social care system in Northern Ireland as part of the International Fraud Awareness week running from 12th to 18th November. The initiative warns all care workers and providers to be vigilant against fraud in the system.

For full details and further information, please visit the Department of Health website.

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NISCC publishes Quality 2020 annual progress reportNISCC publishes Quality 2020 annual progress report

The Northern Ireland Social Care Council (NISCC) has published their annual report which examines the progress made on targets set out in Quality 2020, including the registration of domiciliary care workers, strengthening the workforce and raising standards.

Further information, and the full report, can be found on the NISCC website.

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Westminster set to approve Northern Ireland Budget BillWestminster set to approve Northern Ireland Budget Bill

It has been reported that the Government in Westminster is close to approving a Budget Bill for Northern Ireland, as the current budget will run out by the end of November. Local parties and journalists who have seen the figures in the Bill claim that there will be an increase in funding for health services.

The full news report can be found on the BBC website.

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National Safeguarding Week beginsNational Safeguarding Week begins

The 'National Safeguarding Week', which begins on 13th November, will feature events for the public and professionals to raise awareness of the importance of safeguarding children, young people and adults at risk.

To see what is happening in your area, please visit your Regional Safeguarding Board's website.

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£4 billion needed for the NHS say three leading think tanks£4 billion needed for the NHS say three leading think tanks

In a joint statement, the Nuffield Trust, the Health Foundation and The King's Fund have urged the Government to address the critical state of health and social care in its forthcoming Autumn Budget. 

Claiming that 2018/19 will be a crunch year for the NHS, estimates in the joint statement say that NHS funding will be at least £4 billion lower than is needed in 2018/19. 

The think tanks are calling on the Government to recognise the immediate funding pressures facing the NHS, and to address the social care funding gap of £2.5 billion by 2019/20. 

With the social care system on the brink of crisis, the briefing argues that the need for reform remains as urgent as when the Prime Minister made the case for it during the election campaign. It calls on the Government to use the Budget to commit to fundamental reform and to publish costed funding options when it launches its forthcoming consultation on social care.

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CSSIW release details of updated re-registration requirementsCSSIW release details of updated re-registration requirements

CSSIW have given further details on the mandatory re-registration of care services. From April 2018, due to changes contained in the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016, all domiciliary care agencies in Wales will need to re-register with CSSIW.

Providers will be able to submit registration requests from February 2018, but they will not be processed until April 2018. As part of the re-registration process, providers will also be required to designate Responsible Individuals (RIs) for each of the services they wish to register.

Further details of the changes and the registration process can be found on the CSSIW website. UKHCA will also send out more details as they emerge.

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Social Care Wales seek feedback on draft domiciliary care worker guidanceSocial Care Wales seek feedback on draft domiciliary care worker guidance

Social Care Wales have launched a consultation process to gather feedback on their new draft practice guidance for domiciliary care workers in Wales. The guidance will work in tandem with the Code of Professional Practice of Social Care and outlines good practice for care workers in carrying out their care roles.

The consultation will close on 19 January. The consultation document, guidance and details for how to respond can be found on the Social Care Wales website.



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CSSIW publish annual report for 2016/17CSSIW publish annual report for 2016/17

CSSIW has published its annual report for 2016/17 which gives further details on performance targets, inspection results and information on the care sector as a whole. Key findings include:

  • Domiciliary care received fewer reported concerns compared to residential services;
  • The sector remains fragile with concerns remaining over workforce capacity;
  • There remains a problem with some people being overlooked in the assessment system; and
  • Persistent variability in the commissioning and procurement practices of local authorities.

Further information, and the full report, can be found on the CSSIW website.

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New appointment for Minister for Children and Social CareNew appointment for Minister for Children and Social Care

The Welsh Government has confirmed that Huw Irranca-Davies (AM) has taken over as the new Minister for Children and Social care.

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Voluntary Living Wage rates increase from 6 November 2017Voluntary Living Wage rates increase from 6 November 2017

The Living Wage Foundation has increased the voluntary Living Wage rate for the UK (outside London) by 30p an hour from £8.45 to £8.75 an hour from 6 November. The Scottish Living Wage mirrors this increase. The voluntary London Living Wage rate increased by 45p from £9.75 to £10.20 an hour. For more, see Living Wage Foundation announcement. Accredited Living Wage employers are expected to implement the new rates as soon as possible and within six months of 6 November 2017. UKHCA's Minimum Price for Homecare has been revised accordingly and can be found at: www.ukhca.co.uk/downloads.aspx?ID=434#bk1

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November 2017 Homecarer is now available to download November 2017 Homecarer is now available to download 

November Homecarer is now available to download. In this issue: UKHCA reviews a recent house of commons debate on social care; Bridget Warr, UKHCA CEO discusses how we continue to work on making progress in homecare; Towergate Insurance writes about liability claims; Anthony Collins Solicitors looks at what fire safety means for homecarers; London Fire Brigade issues a warning on the dangers of emollient creams;James Whynacht, UKHCA Policy Officer reports on how homecare providers in Wales are facing substantial change within the care sector;Veronica Monks, UKHCA Policy Officer and Carole Broughton, UKHCA Information Officer, discusses the Care Quality Commission's consultation on fees; Duncan White, UKHCA Senior Policy Officer looks at what is happening in social care in Scotland; James Whynacht, UKHCA Policy Officer's Northern Ireland national reports asks whether homecare providers are ready for new data protection regulations.

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Funding available to support social prescribingFunding available to support social prescribing

The Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise Health and Wellbeing Fund is making around £4m in grants available for 2017/18. The fund is aimed at expanding social prescribing across England and applications will need to set out how the social prescribing scheme will reduce health inequalities.

Social prescribing is generally understood to be an intervention through which people are supported to access non-medical services in the community. Examples include befriending, art classes and exercise classes.

The application guidance invites organisations to bid for up to £300,000 for the first year of a three year scheme and makes clear that in year four, projects are expected to be self-funded. The closing date for application is noon on 21 November 2017.

A link to the application form and the information pack is here.

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DOLs reform to be rolled into new mental health legislationDOLs reform to be rolled into new mental health legislation

In a ministerial statement issued 30th October 2017, Jackie Doyle-Price MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health, gave an interim response to the Law Commission's review of the Mental Capacity and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS). The review, which was completed in March 2017, recommended that DOLs should be replaced by a new scheme called the Liberty Protection Safeguards and apply to any setting that might give rise to a deprivation of liberty, including shared lives and supported living schemes. The new scheme will apply to people aged over 16.

In the statement, the government welcomed the Law Commission's recommendations and said they will engage with stakeholders on how to implement the Law Commission recommendations. These will be undertaken as part of the reform of mental health legislation.

The government will provide its final response to the Law Commission's report in Spring 2018.

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CQC publish common guidance for providers and inspectorsCQC publish common guidance for providers and inspectors

The Care Quality Commission has published updated guidance for providers and inspectors. The guidance 'How CQC monitors, inspects and regulates adult social care services' replaces separate Provider and Inspector Handbooks and will be used from 1 November 2017.

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Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC): guidance for workers on using social mediaScottish Social Services Council (SSSC): guidance for workers on using social media

The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) has updated its guidance for workers on using social media in a way that meets the SSSC Code of Practice.

The updated guidance covers:

-what social media is

-sharing information

-maintaining boundaries

-protecting yourself.

You can find the new guidance here.

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SSSC publish Workforce Skills Report 2016/17SSSC publish Workforce Skills Report 2016/17

SSSC have published their annual workforce skills report for the year covering 2016/17. The report provides an in-depth look at the high-level of skill required to perform a care role in Scotland and explores what future demands may be asked of the care workforce.

The full report, and a short summary, can be found on the SSSC website.

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CSSIW consultation on DBS changes - last chance to commentCSSIW consultation on DBS changes - last chance to comment

CSSIW are seeking views on their proposed changes to the DBS application process to bring Wales in line with other UK regulators. CSSIW will no longer directly manage the checks, and applicants will be required to pay the DBS fee (currently £44) and an administration charge for this service.

Full details of the proposed changes and how to respond to the consultation can be found on the CSSIW website.

The deadline for responses is 31 October 2017.

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Department of Health NI publish statistics on community careDepartment of Health NI publish statistics on community care

The DH has released their 'Statistics on Community Care for Adults in NI 2016 - 2017' statistical bulletin. The publication reports on activity data analysed by HSC Trust. It also includes trend analysis over the past five years. 

Key points and details for how to access the full report can be found on the DH website.

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Welsh Government open to considering new tax for social careWelsh Government open to considering new tax for social care

Vaughan Gething, Health Secretary in Wales, raised the possibility of creating a new social care tax, or levy, through use of new tax powers.

The levy is one of four possible new taxes that have been outlined by the Welsh Government, and would be used to ensure that the system is capable of delivering high quality care in Wales.

The Health Secretary told the BBC's 'Sunday Politics Wales' programme that all political parties, as well as members of the public, needed to engage in a debate about how to fund social care in the future.

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Department of Health NI release results of survey on workforce registrationDepartment of Health NI release results of survey on workforce registration

The DH has recently released the results of a survey that was undertaken to get the views of the public and the care sector on the registration of social care workings.

According to the survey results:

  • 70% of the public believed that the new registration would lead to improvements;
  • 51% of employers who were surveyed in the study believed that staff turnover will be reduced as a result of registration;
  • 77% are more confident that if something goes wrong, those responsible will be prevented from making the same errors again;
  • 65% thought it likely to reduce the risk of something going wrong.

Further details can be found on the Northern Ireland Social Care Council website.

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Opposition Day debate on social careOpposition Day debate on social care

Coverage of the Opposition Day debate in the House of Commons today, 25 October 2017, on social care and supported housing is available at: www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/live/bbcparliament#

Live reporting: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-politics-parliaments-41723576

UKHCA referred to our Budget submission in an email briefing to MPs prior to the debate, which was opened by an encouraging number of MPs, and homecare has figured strongly in the debate, which also looked at funding social care, increasing pressures on the health and social care system and the inter-relationship between health and social care.

Pre-debate Commons briefings: http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/research/commons-business-briefings/

LGA papers: https://www.local.gov.uk/parliament/briefings-and-responses/social-care-opposition-day-debate-house-commons-wednesday-25

The Hansard report of the debate is at: https://hansard.parliament.uk/commons/2017-10-25/debates/82934455-30D6-4B0C-94CB-11A0A9A9953D/SocialCare

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New appointments to UKHCA's BoardNew appointments to UKHCA's Board

United Kingdom Homecare Association is delighted to announce three non-executive directors were elected to join UKHCA's able and committed Board at our recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 10 October 2017. Full UKHCA press release.

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CQC issue response to second next phase consultationCQC issue response to second next phase consultation

The Care Quality Commission have issued their response to the second consultation on the next phase of regulation, setting out changes to the regulation of adult social care services, registration and the fit and proper persons requirement. The consultation analysis and response are at: http://www.cqc.org.uk/get-involved/consultations/our-next-phase-regulation-consultation-2

CQC have also emailed providers direct with a newsletter summarising the changes.

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Free 'flu vaccinations confirmed for England’s Homecare WorkersFree 'flu vaccinations confirmed for England’s Homecare Workers

The Department of Health and Public Health England have confirmed that paid homecare workers in England’s independent and voluntary sector will be entitled to free ‘flu vaccination this winter 2017-18. See letter from Professor Dame Sally Davies and others to UKHCA CEO Bridget Warr, in her capacity as chair of the Care Provider Alliance, dated 18 October 2017.

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Age UK report 4 million bed days lost since 2011 due to problems securing social careAge UK report 4 million bed days lost since 2011 due to problems securing social care

Age UK's analysis of statistics on delayed transfers of care show that since 2011, almost four million hospital bed days have been lost to the NHS due to problems securing social care.

In 2016/17 alone, nearly one million hospital bed days were lost (954,799) due to an inability to access social care, with an excess cost of £173 million excluding equipment and adaptations.

The Charity reveals that the starkest increase was last year, between 2015/16 and 2016/17, when there was a 27.2 per cent rise in the number of bed days lost through an inability to have social care arrangements in place, from 695,037 days, to 954,799 days.

The latest available figures show that in the period between April and July 2017, there have been 13.2 per cent more days lost to social care than during the same period in 2016.

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Staying active can reduce demand for social careStaying active can reduce demand for social care

Keeping active can help people live more independently and reduce the need for social care, according to an article published in The British Medical Journal.

The authors of the article say that staying healthy in old age is not a matter of luck; genetics are not the major causes of chronic diseases. Rather, the need for social care is determined more by loss of fitness which can often be confused with the effects of ageing. The good news is that at any age, and with any combination of health problems, exercise can improve fitness and keep a person above the threshold for needing more care.

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Additional £40 million for health in Northern Ireland but financial pressures remainAdditional £40 million for health in Northern Ireland but financial pressures remain

An additional £40million is being allocated to the Department of Health to meet short-term financial pressures faced by the health and social care system. Trusts were consulting on savings of £70 million, so the additional £40million will only reduce the amount required to break even.

The Department has warned that in 2018-19 and 2019-20 an estimated £430 million and £670 million respectively will be needed to maintain existing services. The Department's announcement said: "...the best long-term way to counter these pressures is transformation. It is absolutely imperative to pursue the reform of the system to safeguard vital services and ensure it is fit for the future.

"As the Expert Panel, led by Professor Bengoa reported, reform must be addressed in a systematic and sustainable way which is in parallel with improving the quality of services. Transformation plans must continue for our health and social services so that resources are used in the most effective way in the best interests of patients."

https://www.health-ni.gov.uk/news/additional-ps40-million-health

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Sleep-ins, handed back contracts and provider closures feature in ADASS surveySleep-ins, handed back contracts and provider closures feature in ADASS survey

The Autumn Short Survey of Directors of Adult Social Services 2017 published today (11th October 2017) shows:

  • 50 councils experienced handbacks of contracts. 46 (92.0%) of these experienced handbacks in home care, 12 (24%) in residential care and 9 (18%) in nursing care. 6 councils (12%) experienced contract handbacks from all three types of service
  • 64 councils experienced provider closures, 36 of those (56.25%) in home care, 37 (57.8%) in residential care and 33 (51.6%) in nursing care. 13 councils (20%) experienced closures from all three types of service
  • 90 local authorities experienced quality concerns, 74 (82.2%) in home care, 80 (88.9%) in residential care and 77 (85.6%) in nursing care. 61 (68%) had experienced quality issues in all three types of service
  • The number of people affected across 74 councils was 27,815
  • 67 councils were able to provide an estimate of the amount required to cover the six-year back-pay for sleep-ins in council-run services. The average was £131,221 per council, with a total for those 67 councils of £8,791,794
  • 57 councils were able to provide an estimate of the amount required to cover the six-year back-pay for sleep-ins for all services in their area. The average was £1,782,974 per council are, with a total for those 57 council areas of £101,629,500.

In their press release, Margaret Willcox, ADASS President, said:

"Our latest survey findings should act as a fresh wake-up call to government that adult social care is coming perilously close to becoming unsustainable."

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Social Care Wales publish strategy for 2017-2022Social Care Wales publish strategy for 2017-2022

The strategic plan sets out Social Care Wales's vision for the next five years, what it aims to achieve, what its focus will be and how it will work with the social care and early years sectors, the public and the Welsh Government to realise its ambition. Over the next five years, Social Care Wales aims to lead and support improvement in social care, develop the social care and early year's workforce, and provide public confidence.

The full strategy, and a short PDF summary, can be sound on the Social Care Wales website.

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Complete your Self-Assessment of Service Statement (SASS)Complete your Self-Assessment of Service Statement (SASS)

Care and Social Services Inspectorate (CSSIW) have written to all domiciliary care agencies to remind them to fill and submit their SASS via CSSIW Online.

All domiciliary care agencies, even if not currently operating, must submit their response by the 15th November.

If you do not receive a letter from CSSIW or if you are having technical problems with the website or activating your CSSIW Online account, for example if your activation PIN is not working, please email cssiw.online@wales.gsi.gov.uk or CSSIW on 0300 025 6222 (English) or 0300 025 6111 (Welsh).

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Social Care Wales publish new toolkit for working with older peopleSocial Care Wales publish new toolkit for working with older people

Social Care Wales has today published a toolkit to support the sector to help older people remain independent in their communities for longer. The toolkit is aimed at practitioners who work with older people in the community, as well as planners and commissioners of care and support services for older people.

Further details and access to the toolkit can be found on the Social Care Wales website.

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LGA say £1.3bn is required immediately to stabilise the adult social care provider market LGA say £1.3bn is required immediately to stabilise the adult social care provider market 

In their report Adult social care funding - state of the nation 2017 published 11th October 2017, the Local Government Association (LGA) say that a bare minimum of £1.3 billion is required immediately, and in future years, to stabilise the adult social care provider market.

Putting pressure on Philip Hammond ahead of the Autumn Budget, the LGA also estimate that local government faces a funding gap of £5.8 billion by 2020. According to the LGA, £1 billion of this is attributable to adult social care and includes only the unavoidable costs of demography, inflation and the National Living Wage. The figure excludes other significant pressures to adult social care, including the potential costs associated with "sleep-ins", which include both historic liabilities and future costs, as well as any resources to address unmet need.

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Care Minister doesn't recognise Age UK figures in Care Quality Commission reportCare Minister doesn't recognise Age UK figures in Care Quality Commission report

Age UK have estimated that up to 1.2 million people have unmet social care needs, a figure quoted by the Care Quality Commission in their State of Care report published 10th October 2017. On the same day, during Health Questions in parliament, Care Minister, Jackie Doyle-Price said she didn't recognise Age UK's estimates. Referring to the social care consultation, the Care Minister said: "There is a long-term issue to address in the fact that we are all living longer. This is not just going to need a sticking plaster; we will need to take the public with us. So this is not just another consultation; it is a vehicle for making sure that we as a society tackle this issue once and for all."

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"The big questions on (social care) funding have repeatedly been dodged""The big questions on (social care) funding have repeatedly been dodged"

Mark Lever, co-chair of the Care and Support Alliance, of which UKHCA is a member, was speaking in an article in the Guardian newspaper about the absence from the prime minister's ill-fated conference address of any reference to the system reform that had been flagged in the party's general election manifesto, promising "dignity and protection in old age".

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CQC State of Care ReportCQC State of Care Report

The publication of the Care Quality Commission’s annual State of Care Report (10 October 2017) presents a picture of England’s social care and health system at “full stretch”, with many services having coped well, while others are even more fragile than last year. Full UKHCA press release.

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CQC calls for better capacity assessment and decision recordsCQC calls for better capacity assessment and decision records

CQC's new State of Social Care report commented that mental capacity is an area where health and social care providers and staff often lack understanding (page 121). CQC said there was often not enough time spent assessing a person's changing capacity, particularly where this fluctuates daily, and record keeping was not always detailed enough on 'best interests' decisions.

UKHCA would like to draw members' attention to our recently revised free Mental Capacity Factsheet, by Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP, which describes mental capacity assessment and 'best interests' decision making, and includes decision record templates for basic and more complex decisions.

There will be more about CQC's State of Social Care report in November Homecarer.

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Welsh Government publish draft budget for 2017/18Welsh Government publish draft budget for 2017/18

The Government has published 'Taking Wales Forward' the draft budget priorities for 2017/18 which will be confirmed towards the end of October. The draft priorities re-state a commitment to integrated health and social care services, £25m of additional funding for local authorities, and a further £60m for the Intermediate Care Fund.

Further details can be found on the Welsh Government website.

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Social care cost inquiry for ageing population in WalesSocial care cost inquiry for ageing population in Wales

The Welsh Assembly has launched an inquiry into the social care cost of caring for an ageing population. The inquiry will be led by the Finance Committee and will primarily focus on determining the likely cost of social care in Wales.

The Assembly have invited the public and interested parties to submit comments for consideration, with a deadline of 8 December 2017, now extended to 31 January 2018.

Further details of the inquiry and how to respond can be found on the Assembly website.

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New Bill aims to make Public Services Ombudsman more responsive and citizen-focusedNew Bill aims to make Public Services Ombudsman more responsive and citizen-focused

A newly proposed bill aims to change the way that complaints are handled by the Public Services Ombudsman, which also deals with complaints from independent care providers in Wales. The bill seeks to make the complaints process simpler, and easier to understand.

Full details can be found here.

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Government extends suspension of HMRC enforcement relating to sleep-ins - briefing now availableGovernment extends suspension of HMRC enforcement relating to sleep-ins - briefing now available

The Government has extended suspension of HMRC enforcement of back pay owed to staff undertaking sleep-in shifts in the social care sector by one month from the previous deadline of 2 October, announced in July. This is to allow the government time to develop a new enforcement scheme for the sector to encourage and support social care providers to identify back pay owed to their staff.

Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP have issued a briefing on this extension which comments that social care providers have a further month of uncertainty to see what the Government proposes to do about back pay for sleep-ins. They hold out little hope that the Government will put their hands in their pockets to help providers make six years of back payments.

The Government announcement is at: www.gov.uk/government/news/government-extends-suspension-of-minimum-wage-enforcement-in-the-social-care-sector

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Helpful information and guidance on General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)Helpful information and guidance on General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Following on from a roundtable event in Belfast on GDPR with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) the ICO have passed on a number of helpful resources to help organisations navigate their way through changes as a result of GDPR coming into effect in May 2018.

These resources include:

-A GDPR self-assessment toolkit

-Privacy impact assessment guidance and code of practice

-'Bring your own device guidance'

-Security compliance and guidance:

We strongly urge members to review these resources and familiarise themselves with the ICO website.

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NISCC publish consultation on Equality and Disability Action Plan 2018-23NISCC publish consultation on Equality and Disability Action Plan 2018-23

NISCC are seeking views and feedback on their Action Plan through a public consultation process that will run from early October until the end of December. The Equality Action Plan looks at actions that could be taken to tackle inequalities across all equality categories. The Disability Action Plan looks at promoting positive attitudes towards disabled people and encouraging their participation in our work areas.

Further details and information on how to respond to the consultation can be found on the NISCC website.

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Nice guidelines on intermediate care including reablementNice guidelines on intermediate care including reablement

Nice has published a new guideline on intermediate care including reablement. It covers referral and assessment for intermediate care and how to deliver the service. Intermediate care is a multidisciplinary service that helps people to be as independent as possible. It provides support and rehabilitation to people at risk of hospital admission or who have been in hospital. It aims to ensure people transfer from hospital to the community in a timely way and to prevent unnecessary admissions to hospitals and residential care.
Download the new guideline here.

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NISCC publish annual performance reportNISCC publish annual performance report

NISCC have published their annual report which gives an account of their financial management and progress towards their aim 'To protect the public through improving safeguards for vulnerable people, raising the standards of social care practice and strengthening the professionalism of the workforce'.

The highlights and full report can be found the NISCC website.

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Cavendish Coalition calls for migration system that recognises public service valueCavendish Coalition calls for migration system that recognises public service value

The Cavendish Coalition (of which UKHCA is a member), has responded to the joint statement from CBI and TUC on EU nationals' rights, calling for a future immigration system that uses public service value as a key factor in assessing skill levels and setting entry requirements.

The Coalition says this would help to tackle the often misleading assumption that the salary paid to a migrant worker is the main indicator of the value of their work to the health and wealth of the UK.

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Skills for Care guidance on recruitment and retention successSkills for Care guidance on recruitment and retention success

Skills for Care have published a report that gives guidance to employers in England on how to improve recruitment and retention in adult social care services. The advice was put together after consultation with employers to find out what works well.

The full report can be found on the Skills for Care website.

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Labour Party pledges a national care service Labour Party pledges a national care service 

In his address to the 2017 Labour Party conference, Jon Ashworth, the Shadow Health Secretary pledged a Labour Government would allocate an extra £45 billion for the NHS and social care sector. He also pledged Labour would establish a half billion pound emergency winter fund.

Barbara Keeley, Shadow Cabinet member for mental health and social care said Labour will build a National Care Service. She said that in its first years, the National Care Service will receive an extra £3 billion in public funds every year. This would, she said be enough to place a cap on what individuals have to pay towards care and enough to raise the asset threshold. It would also fund free end of life care.

Labour plan to invite an independent, expert panel to advise them on how to move to a sustainable service for the long term.

Read the full speeches here.

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Social care worth £42 billion to the English economy Social care worth £42 billion to the English economy 

Skills for Care has launched their latest report on the state of the adult social care sector and workforce in England with a finding that adult social care contributes £42 billion to the English economy. "The state of the adult social care sector and workforce in England 2017" examines data collected from the National Minimum Data Set for Social Care (NMDS-SC) and also looks at future demand for social care. Based on the current rate of growth between 2012 and 2016, Skills for Care project that by 2030 the sector as a whole may need 350,000 new jobs which represents a 21% growth.

Key findings in the report for the homecare sector show:

  • 505,000 jobs in CQC regulated homecare services
  • 440,000 of those jobs estimated to be providing direct care
  • 48% of the workforce were employed on zero-contracts
  • Turnover rate was 32.5% (27.8% across all services)
  • Vacancy rate was 9.2% equating to an estimated 48,500 vacant positions at any one time (6.6% across all services).

Since the introduction of the mandatory National Living Wage on April 1 2016, care workers pay in the independent sector has increased at a higher rate than previous years. Pay increased by 28p per hour (3.8%) between 2015/16 and 2016/17, before to the introduction of the NLW the pay had increased by an average of 12p per hour between 2011/12 and 2015/16.

 

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New e-learning programme for continence and catheter careNew e-learning programme for continence and catheter care

Health Education England e-Learning for Healthcare (e-LfH) has worked with partners to develop an e-learning programme to promote excellence in continence and catheter care. The e-learning programme comprises two sessions: "Promoting best practice in continence care" and "Promoting best practice in catheter care".

This programme is primarily intended for nursing staff and health care assistants across all settings, but is also available to homecare staff. It aims to improve knowledge and awareness of all aspects of continence and catheter care and includes the different types of incontinence and the therapies and treatments that can be offered. Emphasis is on avoiding catheterisation and on strategies for reducing the risk of catheter acquired urinary tract infection (CAUTI) in situations where catheterisation is unavoidable.

Access to e-LfH content is available to all social care professionals in England whose employers are registered with the Skills for Care National Minimum Data Set for Social Care (NMDS-SC).

To register with the NMDS-SC, members should access www.nmds-sc-online.org.uk or contact the skills for care support service on 0845 8730129.

A link to the e-learning programme is here.

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Cavendish Coalition welcomes comments from Prime Minister on status of EU citizensCavendish Coalition welcomes comments from Prime Minister on status of EU citizens

Responding to the Prime Minister's comments on the status of EU citizens in her speech in Florence on Friday 22 September, Danny Mortimer, co-convenor of the Cavendish Coalition (of which UKHCA is a member), said:
 
'We welcome the Prime Minister's positive message on the issue of guarantees for EU citizens already working in the UK. The Cavendish Coalition will continue to encourage the Government quickly and straightforwardly to enable indefinite leave to remain to the 165,000 EU staff working tirelessly to provide the best possible health and social care across our nations.
 
'We are clear that social care and health care will need to continue to recruit from the EU after Brexit, as well as the rest of the world, to fill vacancies that can't be filled domestically. In the short to medium term it is not feasible to meet current health and social care sector staffing needs through either additional domestic recruitment or training activity alone....".

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The Welsh Government has started the search for Wales' next Older People's CommissionerThe Welsh Government has started the search for Wales' next Older People's Commissioner

The Welsh Government is inviting applications from people interested in becoming Wales' third Older People's Commissioner. The closing date is 13 October 2017.

Following a full public appointments exercise, which will involve representatives of older people, it is expected a new commissioner will be appointed by the First Minister of Wales in spring 2018 for an initial four year term, with the new commissioner starting in the role in June 2018.

The Older People's Commissioner:

  • promotes awareness of the rights and interests of older people in Wales
  • challenges discrimination against older people in Wales
  • encourages best practice in the treatment of older people in Wales
  • reviews the law affecting the interests of older people in Wales.

The Commissioner has a wide range of legal powers to help deliver the change older people want and need to see.

Click here to read more.

 

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Department of Health publishes quarterly carer statisticsDepartment of Health publishes quarterly carer statistics

The Department of Health has published this quarter's statistics for carer assessments and re-assessments. A carer's assessment looks at each carer as an individual with their own personal circumstances, and will identify any particular needs they may have as a result. Both assessments and re-assessments have seen an increase since the last quarter.

Full figures and analysis can be found on the Department of Health website.

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Health and social care trust consultations on financial savings plansHealth and social care trust consultations on financial savings plans

The Health and Social Care Trusts in Northern Ireland have opened the consultation process on their financial savings plans.

The plans are being put in place to achieve savings targets given by the Department of Health and will be looking at making cuts to health and social care services.

The deadline to respond to the consultations is the 5th of October, and links to each Trusts consultation document or questionnaire can be found below.

Belfast Health and Social Care Trust

Northern Health and Social Care Trust

Western Health and Social Care Trust

Southern Health and Social Care Trust

South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust

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Powys County Council eventPowys County Council event

The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 will change the way local authority social services and other care services work together in partnership to help and support people. Powys County Council is entering a new chapter in the history of social services and care, the biggest change in a generation.

In response to this, the Council has considered a range of options for the future commissioning of the domiciliary care service for older people and vulnerable adults. The Council's preferred choice is to develop an approved provider list in the form of a Dynamic Purchasing System to meet the needs of local residents, and future demand.

This is an exciting opportunity for the Council and its providers. We would therefore like to openly invite all providers, potential providers and any organisation who wishes to support us in exploring and understanding this preferred option, to participate and contribute in an engagement event to share their valued knowledge, opinions and views in shaping the future commissioning of the domiciliary care service in Powys.

Providers, potential providers and interested parties are invited to attend an event on the 28th September 2017, from 10am until 1pm at the International Pavilion, Royal Welsh Showground, Llanelwedd, Builth Wells, LD2 3SY. To register your interest in attending the event, please email: shaun.morris@powys.gov.uk or tel. 01597 826803. Please could you also state if you wish to contribute in Welsh.



Bydd Deddf Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol a Llesiant (Cymru) 2014 yn newid y ffordd y bydd gwasanaethau cymdeithasol awdurdodau lleol a gwasanaethau gofal eraill yn cydweithio mewn partneriaeth i helpu a chefnogi pobl. Mae Cyngor Sir Powys ar drothwy pennod newydd yn hanes gwasanaethau cymdeithasol a gofal, y newid mwyaf mewn cenhedlaeth.

O ganlyniad i hyn, mae'r Cyngor wedi trin a thrafod amryw o opsiynau ar gomisiynu gwasanaethau gofal yn y cartref yn y dyfodol i bobl hyn ac oedolion sy'n agored i niwed. Y dewis a ffefrir gan y Cyngor yw datblygu rhestr o ddarparwyr cymeradwy ar ffurf System Brynu Ddynamig a fydd yn ateb anghenion trigolion lleol, a'r galw yn y dyfodol.

Dyma gyfle cyffrous i'r Cyngor a'i ddarparwyr. Rydym felly'n gwahodd unrhyw ddarparwyr, darparwyr posibl ac unrhyw sefydliad sydd am ein cefnogi ni wrth i ni ystyried a deall y dewis hwn, i gymryd rhan mewn digwyddiad arbennig er mwyn rhannu gwybodaeth, barn a sylwadau ar fynd ati i gomisiynu gwasanaeth gofal yn y cartref ym Mhowys.

Rydym am wahodd darparwyr, darparwyr posibl ac unrhyw un sydd a diddordeb i ddigwyddiad arbennig ar 28 Medi 2017, rhwng 10 am a 1 pm yn y Pafiliwn Rhyngwladol, Maes y Sioe Fawr, Llanelwedd, LD2 3SY. I gofrestru diddordeb, anfonwch e-bost at shaun.morris@powys.gov.uk neu ffoniwch 01597 826803. A wnewch hefyd ddatgan os ydych am gyfrannu'n Gymraeg.

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CQC Equality and human rights: a good practice resourceCQC Equality and human rights: a good practice resource

CQC have produced a new good practice resource on equality and human rights. It has been designed to help providers put equality and human rights at the heart of their improvement work so that the quality of care gets better for everyone.

CQC say that services rated outstanding have developed practices that deliver equality and safeguard human rights for both the public and staff. They feel that improving the rights of people is a mainstream part of the delivery of health and social care, rather than a separate activity.

One of the case studies featured in the resource is a home care service for people with learning disabilities and autism.

You can download the good practice resource here.

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Analysis of London STPs by the Kings Fund and the Nuffield TrustAnalysis of London STPs by the Kings Fund and the Nuffield Trust

The King's Fund and the Nuffield Trust have published their analysis of the five London Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs). Commissioned by London's Mayor, Sadiq Khan, the STPs were reviewed to identify their key themes and analyse the proposals being made.

STPs represent a major shift in the approach taken to NHS reform in England. Previously there was an emphasis on competition; now the focus is on working together to bring about improvements in services and manage resources better.

A key theme of all the STPs is to deliver more coordinated services in the community. The analysis suggests that NHS and local government leaders are not being realistic about what can be achieved by 2020/21. As the report says, "Designing and implementing new care models will require both time and investment, including for double-running costs while new services are being established. The expected benefits to hospital demand and activity, as well as costs of care, should not be overstated. Current pressures on services in the community, including adult social care, will have a direct impact on the ability of STPs to deliver ambitions to provide more care in the community. Even if additional investment can be found for services in the community, current workforce pressures suggest that it may not be possible to recruit staff needed to deliver them."

Click here to read more.

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Draft Health Service Safety Investigations BillDraft Health Service Safety Investigations Bill

The Government has published a draft bill which proposes to set up a Health Service Safety Investigations Body. According to the government, this new organisation will bring about a whole-system change to how the NHS investigates and learns from healthcare error.

The Health Service Safety Investigations Body (HSSIB) will be independent of the NHS and at arm's length from Government. It will be able to require any organisation which provides NHS-commissioned care in England to provide information, documents, equipment or other items relevant to an investigation. Investigators will have powers of entry and inspection in order to access premises and material relevant to an investigation, unless these premises are a private home. These powers are similar to investigatory bodies in other safety critical industries, such as the Air Accident Investigations Branch.

More information is available here:

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Guidance on flu jabs for social care staffGuidance on flu jabs for social care staff

Members may already have seen the flu plan for 2017/18. Public Health England has now published guidance specifically for social care providers on flu immunisation of social care staff.

It gives details on the benefits of providing staff with flu vaccinations and points out that vaccination of staff has been shown to be effective in reducing disease spread and patient mortality in a care setting. It can also help to ensure people continue to receive care at home by reducing staff flu related illness and absences.

The guidance also refers to funding of the vaccine, suggesting that social care providers should offer vaccination to all staff directly involved in delievering care. Some staff may be eligible for free vaccination from their GP if they are already in an existing "at risk" clinical group. The guidance advises on the importance of these staff having their vaccinations early to protect themselves from serious illness associated with influenza infection.

Click here for information on who should have a flu jab.

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September Homecarer 2017 now available to downloadSeptember Homecarer 2017 now available to download

September Homecarer 2017 is now available for members to download. In this issue UKHCA provides an update on the Minimum Price for Homecare; Bridget Warr, UKHCA CEO discusses keeping social care as a government priority; Towergate Insurance responds to the CQC's 'state of care' report; Anthony Collins Solicitors says there are signs of hope for care providers waiting for increased funding; Mike Padgham, outgoing UKHCA Chairman writes his final Chairman's letter, Professor Justine Schneider, University of Nottingham explores what 'good' homecare looks like for people with dementia;UKHCA Senior Policy Officer, Duncan White explains how Scottish providers are receiving well below Minimum Price for Care; Dan Jones, UKHCA Policy Officer reports on what the Welsh Government and Social Care Wales has in store for the sector, James Whynacht, UKHCA Policy Officer writes on how Northern Ireland is thinking long-term for care and provides a question and answer page on compliance with National Minimum Wage regulations.

September Homecarer 2017

 

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NICE seeks homecare RM for Quality Standard Advisory Committee for managing medicines in the communityNICE seeks homecare RM for Quality Standard Advisory Committee for managing medicines in the community

NICE are looking for topic experts on managing medicines in the community to join their Quality Standards Advisory Committee (QSAC), in particular a Homecare Registered Manager.

Information on the posts is available here The deadline for applications is 4 October at 17.00.

As members will be aware, NICE quality standards are a concise set of prioritised statements designed to drive measurable quality improvements within a particular area of health or care, developed to help professionals, providers and people who use services. More from: www.nice.org.uk/standards-and-indicators

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Mental capacity factsheet and decision record templates for membersMental capacity factsheet and decision record templates for members

The Mental Capacity Act 2005 introduced new rights in England and Wales from 2007 for people who may have problems making decisions (“mental capacity”) as well as responsibilities for people who look after someone who may have mental capacity issues.

This guidance, recent revised by UKHCA and our recommended solicitors Anthony Collins LLP, complements government guidance and other official materials on the Mental Capacity Act 2005, and provides an overview of the Act and the systems and organisations that support it. The guidance makes practical suggestions on how to adopt mental capacity assessments into homecare practice and, importantly, record 'best interests' decisions (with accompanying templates). There is also a new section on deprivation of liberty. See: www.ukhca.co.uk/downloads.aspx?ID=155#bk1

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House of Commons Health Committee members confirmedHouse of Commons Health Committee members confirmed

Members of the influential Commons Health Committee have been confirmed. Led by Chair Dr Sarah Wollaston, the Committee will comprise Luciana Berger, Ben Bradshaw, Dr Lisa Cameron, Rosie Cooper, Dr Caroline Johnson, Diana Johnson, Johnny Mercer, Andrew Selous, Maggie Throup and Dr Paul Williams. More news here

Membership of the Communities and Local Government Committee is here and Exiting the EU Committee here

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Updated Standards for Employers of Social Workers and Social Care Workers publishedUpdated Standards for Employers of Social Workers and Social Care Workers published

The Northern Ireland Social Care Council (NISCC) in partnership with RQIA, have published their updated standards for social care employers. The standards have been developed jointly, and describe the responsibilities of employers in supporting and enabling their registered workforce to meet the Standards of Conduct and Practice for employees.

Further details, and a PDF download of the standards, can be found on the NISCC website.

8ÞM

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Care workers conference: Leading Change, Adding ValueCare workers conference: Leading Change, Adding Value

Leading Change, Adding Value are hosting a free to attend event aimed at care workers, which will be on the 17 October. This event, taking place in Leeds, is being held in being led by NHS England in collaboration with Health Education England, NHS Improvement, Public Health England, National Care Forum, Care England, Royal College of Midwives, Royal College of Nursing and Unison.

A link to the registration page can be found here.

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New guide on moving between hospital and homeNew guide on moving between hospital and home

There is a new quick guide for registered managers of homecare and care homes on moving between hospital and home, which acknowledges their important role in supporting patients transferring in and out of hospital. The guide, by SCIE and NICE, considers how managers can work in partnership with hospitals and other services to help people make a smooth transition to and from care.

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Views sought from those registered with SSSCViews sought from those registered with SSSC

The Scottish Social Services Council is seeking views from registrants so they can use registration 'in positive ways as well as identifying issues that need addressed'. Registered staff are invited to respond to a short anonymous online survey by 15 September 2017. This should take around 5-10 minutes: Registration Research Project Survey

The research is a long term project and the SSSC will use a variety of ways to communicate with registrants.

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Leaked EU migration policy will create 'a perfect storm'Leaked EU migration policy will create 'a perfect storm'

The ability of the homecare sector to recruit and retain sufficient careworkers will be significantly challenged if proposals contained in a leaked Home Office paper on EU migration policy are implemented, says the United Kingdom Homecare Association, the professional body for domiciliary care providers. Full UKHCA media release

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#OSHtober - Free manual handling resources for your business#OSHtober - Free manual handling resources for your business

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has launched its annual occupational safety and health campaign #OSHtober to highlight the effects of poor manual handing on workers and businesses.

The campaign provides free resources to assist businesses with good manual handling processes as well as tips, facts and statistics through their website and social media.

For further information, go to RoSPA's campaign website, or follow @RoSPAWorkplace on Twitter.

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Court of Protection considers best interest and religious practiceCourt of Protection considers best interest and religious practice

In a recent consideration between best interests and religious practices, the Court of Protection concluded it would not be in the best interests for a Muslim man with profound learning disabilities to observe fasting and the trimming or removal of pubic or axillary hair.

The Court was advised that 'the legally incompetent person (along with the terminally ill, the disabled and minors) is perpetually in a heightened state of spirituality, hence he or she is exempt from practising the major rituals of Islam including adherence to the Five Pillars.'

However, it was noted that the distinction between the legally competent and legally incompetent person is a "progressive" Islamic belief and other schools of belief within Islam may exist.

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Social Care Wales prepares sector for new qualificationsSocial Care Wales prepares sector for new qualifications

Today (5 September) Social Care Wales, a new organisation in Wales created to regulate and develop the social care workforce, has announced a suite of 20 new qualifications to be taught from September 2019.

City & Guilds and WJEC have been awarded the contracts and will work with Qualifications Wales, Social Care Wales, NHS Wales and trainers to design and deliver the new suite.

Further information about the development of the qualifications can be found on the Qualifications Wales website. Don't forget to respond to the Social Care Wales consultation, which deals with fees and qualifications for domiciliary care workers by 16 October.

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Thousands more people could be offered drugs to prevent bone fractures because of osteoporosisThousands more people could be offered drugs to prevent bone fractures because of osteoporosis

Nice (The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence), has published new guidance on the use of drugs called bisphosphonates for preventing bone fractures in people at increased risk.

It recommends treatment with oral bisphosphonate drugs for people who have at least a 1% risk of a bone fracture within the next 10 years.

Risk factors for bone fractures because of osteoporosis include: increasing age; a history of falls; a previous bone fracture because of osteoporosis; smoking; current use or frequent recent use of steroids; and an alcohol intake of more than 14 units per week for women and more than 21 units per week for men. Women are at greater risk because after they have gone through the menopause their bone loss accelerates.

Each year in the UK more than 300,000 people are seen in hospital because of fractures as a result of osteoporosis.

A link to the news report and guidance is here.

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Age UK research shows 1.9m pensioners are living below the poverty lineAge UK research shows 1.9m pensioners are living below the poverty line

New research from Age UK shows that nearly 3 million over 65s are struggling financially and 1.9m are living below the poverty line. Government figures have also shown that more than half a million over 65s are unable to keep their homes adequately warm.

According to Age UK's research, the older a person is, the more likely they are to be in financial difficulty. 19% of 80 to 84 year olds and 21% of those aged 85+ are in poverty compared to only 13% of 65-69 year olds.

Couples were more likely to be financially secure, with 13% in poverty, compared to 20% of single pensioners. Lastly, renters are particularly at risk, especially those renting privately, of which 33% are in poverty.

A link to the Age UK press release is available here.

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NHS England launches guidance on acid attacksNHS England launches guidance on acid attacks

NHS England has launched new guidance and information for the public on acid attacks.

A new page has been created on the NHS Choices website www.nhs.uk/acidburns - containing information on what to do as a victim or a bystander immediately following an attack with a corrosive substance, as well as how the NHS treats injuries caused as a result.

NHS England has also endorsed an infographic produced by burns specialists giving three clear and memorable actions to take - Report, Remove, Rinse - which is being shared via social media.

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Information Commissioners Office launches GDPR blogInformation Commissioners Office launches GDPR blog

The ICO has recently launched a series of blog posts discussing forthcoming changes to information regulation as part of the GDPR changes coming in May 2018. The blog posts aim to bust some of the myths surrounding GDPR, as well as offering some advice on compliance.

The articles can currently be found on the ICO's website.

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Healthwatch report adds to evidence of a fragile homecare systemHealthwatch report adds to evidence of a fragile homecare system

Read our response to today's publication of the Healthwatch report which provides an analysis of the views of older and disabled people and supports our view of an underfunded care system.

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Draft guideline on people's experience in adult social care servicesDraft guideline on people's experience in adult social care services

NICE is consulting on a draft guideline on people's experience in adult social care services: improving the experience of care for people using adult social care services. NICE say this is a valuable opportunity to ensure that the guideline considers issues important to UKHCA members.

The consultation document and supporting evidence are available at consultation page and the closing date is 3 October 2017. NICE expect the final guideline to be published in February 2018. Those who took part in the above consultation will have the chance to comment on the final guideline, just before publication. 

UKHCA is considering a response on behalf of members - please send us your comments to policy@ukhca.co.uk by 22 September 2017.

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A Minimum Price for Homecare - Version 4 now availableA Minimum Price for Homecare - Version 4 now available

UKHCA have revised the minimum price for homecare services from £16.70 to £17.19 per hour, to allow compliance with the prevailing National Minimum Wage and delivery of sustainable homecare services to local authorities and the NHS. The latest report also provides equivalent calculations of costs for the (voluntary) Scottish and UK Living Wages and the London Living Wage.

UKHCA Policy Director, Colin Angel, said: "It is essential that a viable regulated homecare sector is available to support the care of older and disabled people who choose to remain at home. The prices councils pay for care must cover the costs of the workforce, including - as a minimum - full compliance with statutory minimum wage levels and the costs of running a regulated care service. UKHCA's Minimum Price for Homecare provides a thorough rationale for the costs of state-funded care and is highlighted in Government's Care and Support Statutory Guidance (for England) as an approach which can be adopted by councils."

In response to feedback from stakeholders, this updated version provides a breakdown of the typical costs of running a homecare business, shown as a percentage mark-up of the direct costs. Our assumptions for the costs of Employers' National Insurance Contributions have also been revised.

UKHCA Minimum Price for Homecare - Version 4 is available to all, so you can share the report with your commissioners.

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Minister urged to boost funding at NHS Shetland annual meetingMinister urged to boost funding at NHS Shetland annual meeting

The Scottish Government was urged to provide more funding to stop "draconian cuts" facing health and social care in the Shetland Isles, the Shetland Times has reported.

Integration Joint Board (IJB) vice-chairman Allison Duncan argued the case with Minister for Public Health and Sport Aileen Campbell at an NHS Shetland annual meeting. Mr Duncan warned the minister that IJBs are grappling with deficits of between three and 14 per cent. Ms Campbell said the public sector was facing challenges around finances and the Scottish government had protected the health budget "as best we can", noting an increase of £2 billion on the health budget by the end of the parliament.

Mr Duncan warned the minister that unless more money is given to the Shetland Islands Council the cuts in the island community are going to be draconian. The minister's response suggested they were prepared to listen to a case for more funding but also she expected people to be able to work together to deliver what they've been charged to do.

Read the report from the Shetland Times here.

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Married couple separated for 10 months due to lack of available homecareMarried couple separated for 10 months due to lack of available homecare

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has asked Lincolnshire County Council to review other families' cases after a man was separated from his wife for 10 months because there was no homecare available in his area.

The man's wife, who has mobility problems, should have returned home with the help of a care package following a hip operation. But she was placed in a residential home some 15 miles away because the council's contracted providers did not have capacity to care for her.

Lincolnshire agreed contracts with a smaller number of preferred care providers, each solely responsible for delivering all homecare services in their zone, in an effort to improve stability in the local market. The newly contracted provider in the woman's area didn't have enough capacity to provide care to meet her needs.

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman's role is to remedy injustice and share learning from investigations to improve local public, and adult social care services. In this case, the council has agreed to pay the husband £750 and the wife £1,000 to reflect their distress. It will also refund the man's travel expenses for the 10 month period. Read the Ombudsman report here

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NHS told to speed up Continuing Health Care AssessmentsNHS told to speed up Continuing Health Care Assessments

Continuing healthcare (CHC) is the name given to a package of care that is arranged and funded solely by the NHS for individuals who are not in hospital and have been assessed as having a primary health need.

Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) have been told by NHS England to speed up the processes for carrying out CHC assessments of people in hospital. Delayed Transfers of Care (hospital discharges) are a key priority for the NHS who have been told they must be reduced from approximately 6,428 per day to 4,080 per day in order to release the needed bed capacity. NHS England estimate that sorting out the delays in discharges due to hold-ups in the CHC assessment process could help vacate up to a quarter of the total number of beds the NHS is required to release.

Some CCGs have been asked for plans to reduce the number of CHC assessments undertaken in hospital, while others have been asked to conduct an audit to understand the reasons for the lengthy delays in NHS CHC eligibility decision-making processes. CCGs are to report to the Director of Nursing by 11th September 2017.

Read the letter from NHS England to CCGs here.

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Blind and partially sighted will have more help to voteBlind and partially sighted will have more help to vote

Following recent changes by Government, English local authorities will be able support those with visual impairments to take part in elections. When a person's sight loss reaches certain levels they can agree to be certified as severely sight impaired or sight impaired by a Consultant Ophthalmologist. This allows them to receive certification and provides an opportunity to access support and services.

A new Certificate of Vision Impairment (CVI) form and accompanying Explanatory Notes for Ophthalmologists will make the CVI process more effective and ensure that people who are newly certified as sight impaired or severely sight impaired receive the support they need promptly. The reform of the CVI will also mean that local authorities in England will be able to contact those who hold a CVI and ask whether they need any extra help or support when registering to vote, or voting in elections.

Read the Department of Health press release here.

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Brexit could simplify process for councils buying homecareBrexit could simplify process for councils buying homecare

The Local Government Association (LGA) have called for the Government to introduce a more efficient system for regulating how councils buy goods and services when the UK leaves the European Union.

At the moment, councils have to follow EU-wide advertising and award procedures which can take twice as long as typical private sector procurements. The LGA is calling for a "lighter touch" system which will allow councils more flexibility and reduce administration costs for businesses, especially small and medium-sized enterprises.

Cllr Kevin Bentley, Chair of the LGA's Brexit Task and Finish Group, said:

" ... introducing more local flexibility and easier procurement rules after Brexit would provide more community benefits and more growth opportunities for SMEs. It would also allow councils to promote local suppliers and local labour and ensure workers earn a decent wage."

Read the full LGA news report here.



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16% of UK care homes at risk of failure16% of UK care homes at risk of failure

According to the accountancy and advisory network, Moore Stephens, 16% of care home companies in the UK are exhibiting warning signs that they are at risk of failure; a year ago they found that 12% of care homes in the UK were at financial risk.

Moore Stephens attribute the difficulties to a number of areas which will be very familiar to UKHCA members. They cite the increase in the National Living Wage and difficulties recruiting and retaining staff, possibly made worse by fewer staff from the EU wanting to relocate to the UK post-Brexit. Calling for more funding for care home companies, Moore Stephens also point out that councils are still having to make savings. English councils have to find £824m from their 2017/18 budgets.

The analysis was derived from Moore Stephens' 'Moore Data' service and shows 1,210 financially stressed companies from a total of 7,497 care home companies as per Companies House- year end 27 July 2017.

Read the full news report from Moore Stephens here.

 

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Department of Health publish figures on direct payments in Northern IrelandDepartment of Health publish figures on direct payments in Northern Ireland

The Department of Health has published the latest quarterly information collected from Health and Social Care Trusts on the number of, and the amount paid by direct payments, broken down by Trust and client group. The report shows that 2906 direct payments were made in the quarter ending 30 June 2017, totalling £4.91m. (The statistics omitted Southern Trust who were unable to provide figures at the time of publication.)

The full figures can be found on the Department of Health website.

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Home Office updates employers' guide to Right to Work checksHome Office updates employers' guide to Right to Work checks

The Home Office has updated its employer guidance on Right to Work checks, applying to checks required on or after 16 May 2014.

Changes include advice in respect of those who claim to have a right to work as a non European Economic Area (EEA) family member of an EEA national, of voluntary work and the employment of international students.

You can download the guidance from the Home Office website.

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Check your compliance with data protection lawCheck your compliance with data protection law

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has created a data protection self-assessment toolkit for businesses to assess their compliance with the Data Protection Act and ensure they are ready for the forthcoming EU legislation, GDPR, in May 2018.

'Good information handling makes good business sense, and provides a range of benefits,' ICO states, 'You'll enhance your business's reputation, increase customer and employee confidence, and by ensuring that personal information is accurate, relevant and safe, save both time and money.'

If you would like more information, come along to UKHCA's conference on 8 September to be part of a workshop on current data protection legislation and the GDPR. Go to our website to book your ticket.

There is also a UKHCA roundtable event, led by the Information Commissioners Office Northern Ireland on the GDPR. This is free for UKHCA members and will be held at Hilton Hotel Belfast, Tuesday on 19 September 2017

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Powys pioneers integrated IT systemPowys pioneers integrated IT system

Health and social care services in Powys are the first to implement an IT system that, it is hoped, will one day be implemented across Wales and used to store important patient information securely.

The Welsh Community Care Information System (WCCIS) makes it more efficient for health and social care professionals to work together and bring care closer to home.

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