UKHCA

United Kingdom Homecare Association
The professional association for homecare providers

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Research and resources round up w/c 12 April 2021Research and resources round up w/c 12 April 2021

The Government has responded to the Women and Equalities Committee Report on Coronavirus, disability and access to services.

Health and Care Research Wales is setting up a public engagement and involvement forum.

Nufield Trust: Fractured and forgotten? The social care provider market in England

Resources

Skills for care have developed new resources on supporting people with everyday technology.

More webinars and support for registered managers from Skills for Care via their latest eNews.

Find out about the Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236684

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Routine testing and notifications in ScotlandRoutine testing and notifications in Scotland

Routine testing of homecare workers in Scotland may be via PCR test or lateral flow test, depending on local Health and Social Care Partnership decisions.

Care Inspectorate Wales have updated their guidance on COVID-19 notifications in relation to lateral flow testing.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236685

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Free webinar: After the clapping stops: the crisis facing migrant care workersFree webinar: After the clapping stops: the crisis facing migrant care workers

Event: After the clapping stops: the crisis facing migrant care workers
Date and time: Tuesday 20th April, 15.30-16.45
Organised by: the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants and the Sustainable Care Research Programme
Registration link here (Free).

On Tuesday 20 April, Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants and the Sustainable Care Research Programme will be discussing the risks that migrants working in the care sector face, what this means for the sector, and what needs to happen to ensure their rights are protected.
 
Chair
Nadia Whittome, MP for Nottingham East

Speakers
Shereen Hussein, Professor of Health and Social Care Policy at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Caitlin Boswell, EU Citizens’ Project Officer at the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants

Kinga Milankovics, a self-employed care provider and co-founder of the Hekate Conscious Ageing Foundation.


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UKHCA News ID: 236682

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National Booking Service opens for those of 45 and overNational Booking Service opens for those of 45 and over

The National Booking Service for COVID-19 vaccination is now open for those of 45 and over in England.

The JCVI has also issued JCVI final statement on phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination programme: 13 April 2021 This confirms offers of vaccination during phase 2 are age-based and in the following order:

  • all those aged 40 to 49 years
  • all those aged 30 to 39 years
  • all those aged 18 to 29 years

The advice suggest those individuals aged 18 to 49 years, where there is an increased risk of hospitalisation in males, those from certain ethnic minority backgrounds, those with a body-mass index (BMI) of 30 or more (obese or morbidly obese), and those experiencing socio-economic deprivation, should take up their offer of vaccination promptly.

UK health ministers' statement on JCVI advice (13 April 2021)

UK moves into next phase of vaccine roll-out as government target hit early

Separate advice has been issued on suitable vaccines for those under 30.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236680

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New posters on COVID-19 vaccination and RamadanNew posters on COVID-19 vaccination and Ramadan

A set of three NHS and Public Health England posters has been launched to confirm people can have COVID-19 vaccinations during Ramadan. The message in each poster is vaccination is acceptable for Muslims.

More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236679

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The relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions in Wales has been acceleratedThe relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions in Wales has been accelerated

The Welsh Government has announced an acceleration of elements of its planned relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions.

Find out more

This builds on the previous announcement to move towards a movement from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3 by mid-May.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236677

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Update to mandatory Infection Prevention and Control Guidance in ScotlandUpdate to mandatory Infection Prevention and Control Guidance in Scotland

The Scottish COVID-19 Community Health and Care Settings Infection Prevention and Control Addendum has been updated.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236678

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Update in Personal Assistant COVID-19 testing policy in EnglandUpdate in Personal Assistant COVID-19 testing policy in England

The policy on COVID-19 testing for Personal Assistants has been updated so that PAs will be offered twice weekly testing using Lateral Flow Device rather than the previous once a week PCR testing. PCR tests will be used only to confirm LFD positive test results.

Find out more


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236676

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Lateral flow testing opens for people without symptoms in EnglandLateral flow testing opens for people without symptoms in England

The following does not replace the organisation testing arrangements for social care employers, which are summarised here.

However, care providers should be aware that from today, 9 April, anyone in England who do not have COVID-19 symptoms can obtain free 30-minute lateral flow tests so they can do twice a week testing.

Understanding lateral flow antigen testing for people without symptoms

Coronavirus (COVID-19): getting tested

New campaign urges public to get tested twice a week

These can be done at home, as well as through employers and test sites. People can collect up to 2 packs of 7 tests from a local pharmacy or test site:

People can also order a pack of 7 tests sent to their home. Order rapid lateral flow home test kits on GOV.UK If testing is done at home, the results should be reported online or by phone.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236674

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Moderna vaccine cleared for use in COVID-19 vaccination rolloutModerna vaccine cleared for use in COVID-19 vaccination rollout

The Moderna vaccine has been cleared for use for all those in phase 1 and 2 of the programme by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), with a 2-dose schedule, the second dose being given between 4 to 12 weeks following the first dose, like the other approved vaccines.

Letter from JCVI and reply from the Health and Social Care Secretary on use of the Moderna vaccine


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236675

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Revised guidance on the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccineRevised guidance on the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

Around four people in every million doses of the Astra Zeneca Vaccine delivered have developed an unusual blood clotting condition following vaccination - this is extremely unlikely and rare.

On review of the information available the JCVI and MHRA have suggested that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks for most people. However, as a precaution the advice for healthy younger persons aged 18-29 who have not received a first dose has been revised to suggest that it would be preferable for them to have an alternative vaccine.

Everyone (including people aged 18-29) is advised to have a second dose of the vaccine if they have received a first without suffering serious side effects.

An information leaflet is available here.

Government press release / MHRA press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236673

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Research and resources round up w/c 6 April 2021Research and resources round up w/c 6 April 2021

The Global Travel Taskforce have made policy recommendations on the safe return of international travel.

Marie Curie have published their Better End of Life Report 2021, which looks at how COVID has affected end of life care.

ONS: Coronavirus and vaccine hesitancy 17 Feb - 14 March. During this period reported vaccine hesitancy was lower than the 13 Jan - 7 Feb figures.

Skills for Care have published Workforce Intelligence reports on social work and also on personal assistants.

A technical specification has been published for transparent face masks.

PHE analysis suggests that COVID-19 vaccinations have prevented over 10,000 deaths in those over 60

The Older People's Commissioner for Wales has launched a manifesto for the Senedd 2021 Election.

A Kings Fund report: Shaping the future of digital technology in health and social care highlightes the "NHS-social care gap" when it comes to investment, research evidence and digital maturity.

LGA: The lives we want to lead: where next for the debate about care and support reform?

King's Fund blog: Making decisions about social care requires tough choices

Resources

The Care Provdier Alliance have published a web-page bringing together information on COVID-19 vaccination.

Recordings of the National Social Care Conference 2020 for Wales are now available.

LGA's new page on the adult social care workforce.

Events

After the clapping stops: the crisis facing migrant care workers - 20 April 15.30-16.45

SCIE and Care Talk: Preparing for a new normal in social care 12 April 11.00-12.45

Care Talk: From New Normal to New Future - How has the response to COVID-19 changed social care practice? 30 June 2021.

The National Wellbeing Hub is running a webinar programme for social care staff in Scotland through April and May.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236669

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Scotland coronavirus updateScotland coronavirus update

Lateral flow tests are set to become universally available twice a week in Scotland, according to the First Minister. Nicola Sturgeon has said that further information on how people can access the tests and from when could be provided later this week.

COVID-19 update: First Minister's statement – 6 April 2021

Meanwhile, Scotland's 'Stay at Home' guidance has now been replaced with the 'Stay Local' message. A full timetable on the relaxing of coronavirus restrictions has been published, with further outdoor socialising being allowed from 26 April. It is hoped that up to four people from up to two households will be permitted to socialise in-home from 17 May.

Details on the COVID-19 protection levels for each Scottish council area


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236668

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PPE Guidance revision in England - How to work safely in domiciliary carePPE Guidance revision in England - How to work safely in domiciliary care

Revised PPE guidance for homecare providers in England has now been published by PHE.

Personal protective equipment (PPE): resource for care workers delivering domiciliary care during sustained COVID-19 transmission in England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Our member organisations had an e-mail alert about the changes on Thursday 1 April. We encourage homecare providers to read PHE's revised PPE guidance in full. The most significant changes are as follows:

  1. Sessional use of face masks is no longer recommended in homecare: At the end of each homecare visit, the facemask should be disposed of and fresh PPE, including a new facemask, will need to be donned before entering the next client's home.
  2. If a client has respiratory symptoms compatible with recent COVID-19 infection, or has tested positive for COVID-19, it is recommended that eye protection (visor or goggles) is worn (along with a Type IIR mask, which is already required).
  3. Eye protection and face masks should be removed and disposed of after completing personal care for each homecare client. If the eye protection is not labelled as single use only, then it needs to be decontaminated before reuse.

Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236672

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Leadership and Management Programme in ScotlandLeadership and Management Programme in Scotland

The Scottish Social Services Council has opened applications for a 10-month leadership and management development programme.

This has been designed for senior leaders in health and social care, as well as partner organisations.

Anyone interested should complete an application form by clicking this link. The deadline for social care applications is 20 May 2021 at 12pm.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236667

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EU Settlement Scheme DeadlineEU Settlement Scheme Deadline

A quick reminder that the deadline for staff who are an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen to apply for EU settled status is 30 June 2021. However, staff are encouraged to apply as early as possible so that any problems can be addressed.

Click here for more information.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236666

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Wellbeing programme for Scottish health and social care staffWellbeing programme for Scottish health and social care staff

Scotland's National Wellbeing Hub is hosting a series of wellbeing webinars for people working in health and social care in April and May. Sessions are on subjects such as helping to cope with low mood and mindfulness.

Staff can book their place at a webinar by clicking this link.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236665

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Mental health support for hospitalised coronavirus patients in ScotlandMental health support for hospitalised coronavirus patients in Scotland

Individuals in Scotland who have been hospitalised because of COVID-19 are set to receive access to mental health support.

£4.5 million of funding from the Scottish Government across three years will create a new network of mental health clinicians to help those affected.

Further information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236664

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Scottish Parliament Committee calls for health reformScottish Parliament Committee calls for health reform

A legacy report by the Scottish Parliament's Health and Sport Committee has said that the COVID-19 pandemic provides a golden opportunity to implement much-needed reform in health and social care.

In the report, it was recommended that social care be given its own separate Parlimentary Committee, while the progress towards the integration of health and social care was criticised.

Further information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236663

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Real Living Wage for care workers in ScotlandReal Living Wage for care workers in Scotland

From May 2021, adult social care workers in Scotland will be paid at least the Real Living Wage, backdated to the previous month. As a result, each care worker will receive a minimum of £9.50 per hour.

Fair pay for social care workers


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236662

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Further easing of lockdown in England from 12 April and universal testing offerFurther easing of lockdown in England from 12 April and universal testing offer

In England, the Government has confirmed a further easing of Covid restrictions from 12 April, when more businesses and venues can reopen. It has also published a Roadmap Reviews: Update on:

  • COVID-Status Certification Review
  • Global Travel Taskforce
  • Events Research Programme
  • Social Distancing Review

The reviews will inform Government decision making on future lockdown easing.

In addition, twice weekly rapid testing is to be available free to everyone in England from 9 April. This does not replace guidance to social care organisations on staff testing, which is summarised here.

PM statement at coronavirus press conference: 5 April 2021


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236660

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Updates for Wales - Care Inspectorate Wales and Supported Living GuidanceUpdates for Wales - Care Inspectorate Wales and Supported Living Guidance

Care Inspectorate Wales has confirmed that the first annual returns for all regulated services that were due in May 2020 are not not due until May 2022.

They have published an updated Securing Improvement and Enforcement Policy and the finidngs of their national review of the use of Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS).

The Supported Living Guidance in Wales has been updated.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236658

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Gender pay gap reportingGender pay gap reporting

Employers with 250 or more employees in England, Wales and Scotland will need to publish their annual gender pay data, with an official deadline for private and voluntary sector organisations of 4 April. However, the Equality and Human Rights Commission have indicated that they will not begin enforcement for the 2020/2021 reporting until 5 October 2021.

Gender pay gap reporting

Further information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236659

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Supporting people living with dementia to be involved in safeguarding enquiriesSupporting people living with dementia to be involved in safeguarding enquiries

New DHSC guidance, supporting people living with dementia to be involved in adult safeguarding enquiries has been issued which draws on research by Dr Jeremy Dixon at the University of Bath and input from people living with dementia, family carers and professionals in the sector.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236661

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COVID-19 mental health and wellbeing recovery action plan for EnglandCOVID-19 mental health and wellbeing recovery action plan for England

The Department of Health and Social Care have published an action plan outlining the steps that they intend to take over the coming year to respond to the mental health impacts of the pandemic.

COVID-19 mental health and wellbeing recovery action plan (publishing.service.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236657

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National Minimum Wage and Living Wage increase and age band changeNational Minimum Wage and Living Wage increase and age band change

On 1 April the National Living Wage increased to £8.91 per hour, the age threshold for the National Living Wages also moved from 25 to 23. This means that younger workers are now eligible for the higher rate. The 21-22 year old rate will be £8.36, 18-20 year old rate £6.56 and 16-17 year old rate £4.62. Record retention requirements for minimum wage are also extending to six years; Statutory sick pay and Statutory family-related pay will be increasing; as will Statutory Redundancy Pay.

Guidance from Anthony Collins Solicitors.

Press release.

More information.

UKHCA National Minimum Wage Toolkit.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236654

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Research and resources round up week commencing 29 MarchResearch and resources round up week commencing 29 March

Senedd Research (Wales): Coronavirus: Long Covid - "it's a game of snakes and ladders"

NICE have published a new quality standard on support for adults aged 18 or over who provide unpaid care for 1 or more people aged 16 or over with health and social care needs.

Action on Smoking and Health have published a report on the cost of smoking to the social care system.

A new version of the House of Commons Library briefing on Coronavirus: Adult social care key issues and sources has been published.

Anthony Collins Solicitors blog: ECJ redefining working time - still relevant post-Brexit


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UKHCA News ID: 236655

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Supported Living guidance update - visitingSupported Living guidance update - visiting

The supported living services guidance has been updated with regards to visits into and out of supported living settings.

Supported living services during coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236656

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Free PPE for care providers until March 2022Free PPE for care providers until March 2022

The Government has announced it is extending the availability of free PPE, via the PPE Portal, to care providers in England until March 2022 - excellent news for the care sector.

UKHCA CEO, Dr Jane Townson, said: "We are grateful to colleagues at the Department for Health and Social Care and Care Minister, Helen Whately MP, for supporting the homecare sector with the extra costs of PPE in the COVID-19 pandemic, which UKHCA has campaigned for."


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236652

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Advice and reassurance on vaccination and fertilityAdvice and reassurance on vaccination and fertility

There are resources that provide reassurance on COVID-19 vaccination and fertility, which may be helpful for those concerned about this issue. The British Fertility Society has produced this resource and there is a joint statement from the Royal Colleges of Midwives, Obstetrics and Gynaecology. See also videos from NHS GP Dr Charles Esene and Public Health England's Dr Gayatri Amirthalingam.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236651

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PCR tests to confirm lateral flow test resultsPCR tests to confirm lateral flow test results

The government is reintroducing confirmatory PCR testing where people receive a positive LFD test result in England. The confirmatory test will be used to validate the result of the initial rapid test. If the confirmatory test is negative, the person will no longer have to self-isolate. Test and Trace systems are being adjusted accordingly.

Government reintroduces confirmatory PCR testing for assisted testing


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236650

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New Infection Control and Testing Fund guidance publishedNew Infection Control and Testing Fund guidance published

The Department of Health and Social Care has published guidance on the new Infection Control and Testing Fund for England, including fund distribution, conditions and reporting requirements.

Infection control and rapid testing funds have been consolidated and extended until June 2021, with an extra £341 million of funds.

DHSC say this is a new grant, with separate conditions to the original Infection Control Fund, the extension to the Infection Control Fund and the original Rapid Testing Fund.

On infection control, local authorities must pass 70% to care homes and CQC-regulated community care providers on a per user basis, as the default allocation. The precise conditions and reporting requirements are set out in the guidance. User allocation is broadly based on the number of non-residential service users per local authority recorded on the Capacity Tracker Home Care Survey as of 18 March 2021. The distribution of the remaining 30% is at local authority discretion, subject to the guidance.

Adult Social Care Infection Control and Testing Fund


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236649

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Resources on lockdown restrictions in EnglandResources on lockdown restrictions in England

Changes begin today to ease the COVID-19 lockdown in England, in accordance with the Government's road map. Government guidance is being updated and there are summaries of the current guidance at:

Coronavirus rules on what people can and cannot do

Poster on restrictions from 29 March 2021


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236648

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UKHCA backs ARCO campaign calling for more housing-with-care optionsUKHCA backs ARCO campaign calling for more housing-with-care options

UKHCA supports the campaign from ARCO calling on the Government for more housi​ng-with-care options for older people. Read the letter in full, which we have co-signed here.

Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236647

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Household contacts of severely immunosuppressed to be prioritised for COVID-19 vaccinationHousehold contacts of severely immunosuppressed to be prioritised for COVID-19 vaccination

The Health and Social Care Secretary has asked NHS England and Improvement (NHSE/I) to adopt advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to prioritise household contacts of the severely immunosuppressed for vaccination, alongside priority group 6 in phase 1 of the vaccination programme.

New vaccine advice for adults living with adults who are immunosuppressed

Letter from the Health and Social Care Secretary to the JCVI: 24 March 2021

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Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236646

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Share your feedback on CQC's Transitional Regulatory ApproachShare your feedback on CQC's Transitional Regulatory Approach

From October 2020 CQC introduced its transitional regulatory approach (TRA). The purpose of this approach was to ensure that the Commission continued to deliver its core purpose of keeping people safe as well as to support providers of health & social care during the pandemic.

To help to continue to develop the approach and understand what it may need to change the Commission would like to hear your views on the TRA through a short survey.

You can also access this survey and many others through CQC's digital engagement platform.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236644

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Blog: UKHCA's CEO Dr Jane Townson on the latest NAO report on social care in EnglandBlog: UKHCA's CEO Dr Jane Townson on the latest NAO report on social care in England

UKHCA welcomes the National Audit Office report and recommendations on the adult social care market in England. We strongly agree with the need for a vision for support and care for older and disabled people; and a workforce strategy.

Read Dr Jane Townson's latest blog here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236643

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Statutory Code of Practice on Autism Services before Senedd (Wales)Statutory Code of Practice on Autism Services before Senedd (Wales)

The statutory code of practice on the delivery of autism services in Wales has been laid before the Senedd and will come into force in September 2021, following which implementation will begin. An implementation plan will be developed in partnership with stakeholders.

The findings of the consultation on the code of practice have also been published.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236642

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Research and resources round up week commencing 22 March 2021Research and resources round up week commencing 22 March 2021

Research and reports

NAO: The National Social Care Market in England (see Dr Jane Townson's blog)

NHS Digital: Adult Social Care Statistics in England - Overview, 2020

[Unpaid] Caring as a social determinant of health: review of evidence

The Economic and Social Research Council and the Health Foundation are supporting the creation of a new centre for research in adult social care called Improving Adult Care Together (IMPACT).

ADASS and TSA have published a report on: How can technology be truly integrated into adult social care?

Technical Advisory Group: Examining Deaths in Wales associated with COVID-19

NHS: Legislating for Integrated Care Systems: five recommendations to Government and Parliament

A number of documents have been published on tax reform (summary) including an Interim Report on the Business Rates Review

Resources

There is now a single document summarising routine testing arrangements across all social care settings in England on GOV.UK


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236641

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Transforming the public health systemTransforming the public health system

Following last year's announcement on 'The future of public health', details have been published on establishing the 'UK Health Security Agency', including the intention to establish it formally in April 2021 and then begin to transfer relevant functions to it, including NHS Test and Trace and the analytic capability of the Joint Biosecurity Centre. There will also be a new Office for Health Promotion in DHSC and local public health systems will be strengthened. Feedback on the proposals is being sought.

Find out more


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236640

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New strategy for unpaid carers published in WalesNew strategy for unpaid carers published in Wales

The Welsh Government have published a new strategy to support unpaid carers. It includes four priorities for action:

  • identifying and valuing unpaid carers
  • providing information, advice and assistance
  • supporting life alongside caring (including supporting access to short breaks and respite)
  • supporting unpaid carers in education and the workplace

Press release: Caring is everyone's business

Written Statement

Strategy for unpaid carers


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236637

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Health and care services recovery plan for WalesHealth and care services recovery plan for Wales

The Health Minister has published a plan to help the health and care system in Wales recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The section most signifcicant to social care is "Chapter 6 - Seamless social care services", however, other sections do discuss the integration of health and social care and the health and social care workforce strategy.

The chapter recognises the significant pressures that the sector has faced during the pandemic, the lack of parity between health and social care, and that issues around financial sustainability have been exacerbated by the pandemic. Positives coming out of the pandemic are also highlighted such as new ways of joint working being identified and an increasd use of digital communication tools.

Priorities identified in relation to the sector include the development of the Rebalancing Care and Support White Paper; the need to consider the future of the Local Authority Hardship Fund; the desire to move towards paying a Real Living Wage in the sector and to ensure support for wellbeing and mental health for workers; an improvement of collaborative working; and support in relation to long COVID.

Press release

Cabinet statement

Health and social care in Wales - COVID-19: looking forward

Alongside this, there has also been a document published on a National clinical framework: a learning health and care system


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236636

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Update on £500 payment to care workers in ScotlandUpdate on £500 payment to care workers in Scotland

Jeanne Freeman has indicated that the majority of social care workers should receive the £500 thank-you payment announced last autumn during April.

News report

Original announcement

FAQs about the payment


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236632

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Welsh Government update Coronavirus Control PlanWelsh Government update Coronavirus Control Plan

The Welsh Government have updated their Coronavirus Control Plan to take into account vaccinations and the dominant Kent variant.

Press release

Revised control plan

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236633

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Care Inspectorate in Scotland expanding Reference GroupCare Inspectorate in Scotland expanding Reference Group

The Care Inspectorate in Scotland are expanding their Reference Group. The Reference Group "give their ideas, thoughts and suggestions to help the Care Inspectorate or partners improve what they do."

Members of the group may be invited to join focus groups, complete questionnaires or have a telephone conversation, but there is no requirement to accept invitations.

Application form


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236630

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Supreme Court rules that Sleep-ins do not qualify for statutory National Minimum WageSupreme Court rules that Sleep-ins do not qualify for statutory National Minimum Wage

The Supreme Court confirmed today (19 March 2021) that the statutory National Minimum Wage did not apply to social care workers permitted to sleep while on duty (notes 1 and 2), an arrangement generally known as a “sleep-in” (notes 3 and 4).

The implications of this long-awaited ruling, whichever way it had been decided, are significant for both employers and members of the social care workforce.

Colin Angel, Policy Director at United Kingdom Homecare Association (note 5), said:

Today’s judgement will be hugely disappointing for those members of the social care workforce who believe that the legal minimum pay rate should be paid for sleep-in duties.

The Supreme Court is the highest court in civil cases in the United Kingdom and there is therefore no further route of appeal in these cases. Today’s judgement provides precedent for how the courts are likely to rule in similar cases. As a result, the court’s decision gives reassurance to central and local government, and employers, that substantial claims for back-payment of wages will not create the risk of large-scale closures of voluntary an independent sector care services which have traditionally made extensive use of sleep-in duties.

Angel continued:

“Now that case-law in this area has been finally decided, there remains an urgent need to address the broken system of funding the social care system, including the direct impact it has on the terms and conditions of the social care workforce. Everyone agrees that the care workforce deserves fair recognition and reward for the valuable and skilled roles they perform.

UKHCA calls on central government to provide statutory guidance to councils and the NHS on funding care work, including sleep-in duties, at a level which shows the true value that society should give to members of the social care workforce.

“In the meantime, we urge those local councils and NHS organisations who have so far taken the responsible position of funding sleep-in duties at or above the statutory minimum to continue to do so.”

Ends.

Notes for editors

1. The cases are Tomlinson-Blake (appellant) vs Royal Mencap Society (respondent) and Shannon (appellant) v Rampersad and another (T/A Clifton House Residential Home) (respondents).

2. The Supreme Court’s ruling in both cases has been published on-line.

3. A “sleep-in” duty may be suitable in situations where a careworker is required to be at or near their place of work and available to provide care and support for one or more people at very short notice when needed. A sleep-in duty can be used when people are unlikely to require assistance of the worker throughout the entire span of duty.

4. Where the needs of people supported by social care require more intensive support than can be offered by a “sleep-in”, workers would normally be expected to remain awake and working (and therefore paid at or above the National Minimum Wage).

5. United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) is the UK’s membership body for homecare providers. Together we ensure that homecare is valued so that all of us can live well at home and flourish within our communities.

6. For further information please contact:
Matthew Kiernan, Press Officer, United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd, Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH. Telephone: 020 8661 8188, Mobile: 07393 012 113
E-mail: media@ukhca.co.uk, Website: www.ukhca.co.uk, Twitter: @ukhca . Registered in England, No. 3083104.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236629

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Research and resources round up w/c 15 MarchResearch and resources round up w/c 15 March

Health for Care have published the findings of a survey of MPs and Councillors in relation to funding for social care. 9 in 10 MPs and 92% of couuncillors agreed that local government does not have enough resources to meet the growing need for social care services.

The Care and Support Alliance have published a report on social care reform - A cry for hope: why 2021 must be the year for social care reform.

CQC blog on Equality and human rights in health and social care

TLAP report: Direct Payments - working or not working?

SCIE: How might leadership roles evolve in integrated health and care systems?

Resources

Skills for Care Wellbeing Resource Finder

Skills for Care Registered Manager Webinars

Affina OD Masterclass: Taking care of your team - Why it matters and what you can do - 31 March 10.30-11.30.

Skills for Care is working with Barclays Digital Eagles to provide digital support and training to the adult social care sector.

There are new resources from Skills for Care on tailoring the Care Certificate in relation to supporting autistic people and people at the end of their life.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236624

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£341 million additional funding announced for infection control and rapid testing in adult social care£341 million additional funding announced for infection control and rapid testing in adult social care

This afternoon, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care anounced an additional £341 million of funding for infection control measures and rapid testing in adult social care services in England.

Press release

Oral statement

We await further details.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236623

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Social care leaders call for end to 25 years of inaction and for the Government to fix the social care systemSocial care leaders call for end to 25 years of inaction and for the Government to fix the social care system

Eight organisations, including the Care Provider Alliance have called on the Government to "end 25 years of inaction and fix the social care system".

The joint statement calls for an increase and extension of emergency support to the sector in the face of the pandemic and for the Government to release proposals for social care reform in advance of the summer parliamentary recess.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236627

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CQC publish review of do not attempt cardiopulmonary resuscitation decisions during COVID-19CQC publish review of do not attempt cardiopulmonary resuscitation decisions during COVID-19

CQC have published their review of the use of Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) decisions during COVID-19.

The report highlights the importance of any DNACPR decisions being made on an individual basis as part of advanced care planning, with the involvement of individuals, in a personalised, caring and compassionate way and at an appropriate time.

Read the report: Protect, respect, connect - decisions about living and dying well during COVID-19

The report makes a number of recommendations including the need to ensure people are at the centre of conversations about decisions around advanced care planning, the need for suitably trained staff to have such conversations, and the need to keep clear records of discussions.

Read more about the recommendations

Alongside this, Compassion in Dying have publised a report: Better understanding better outcomes: what we've learned about DNACPR decisions before and during the Coronavirus pandemic


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236628

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Clinically Extremely Vulnerable no longer advised to shield from 1 April in EnglandClinically Extremely Vulnerable no longer advised to shield from 1 April in England

A letter has been sent to people who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable in England, which outlines that they will no longer be advised to shield from 1 April. The letter outlines practical steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of catching the virus.

Press release

Read the letter


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236622

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MPs to debate social reform and the social care workforceMPs to debate social reform and the social care workforce

Following over 44,000 signatories for the petition calling on the social care workforce to be equally recognised to the NHS, MPs will debate the issue in Parliament later today.

The petition can be found here, while you watch it on Parlaiment TV on the following link.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236618

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New bonus payment announced for NHS and Social Care workers in WalesNew bonus payment announced for NHS and Social Care workers in Wales

The Welsh Government has announced that they will fund a second bonus payment to NHS and social care staff to recognise their extraordinary contribution during the pandemic. This is in addition to the £500 payment announced last year.

It is anticipated that the amount will be equivalent to £735 and is intended to cover tax and national insurance so that, after deductions, most staff will receive £500.

Further details on the scheme are expected.

Press release / Written statement

Guidance will be published here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236619

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Socio-economic equality duty for public bodies in WalesSocio-economic equality duty for public bodies in Wales

The Welsh Government have voted to bring into force a duty for public bodies to take into consideration socio-economic equality. This is part of the Equality Act 2010. It will cover local authorities, however the documentation suggests that:

"As only specified public bodies are subject to the duty, the duty remains with that body. Therefore, the requirement to meet the duty does not pass to a third party through procurement, commissioning or outsourcing.

However, in circumstances where the procurement activity itself is considered by a specified public body to engage the duty, the relevant public body must consider how such arrangements reduce inequalities of outcome caused by socio-economic disadvantage."


Overview. Press release.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236620

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Third Wales Procurement Policy StatementThird Wales Procurement Policy Statement

The Welsh Government have published a new Wales Procurement Policy Statement. Buying organisations will be developing action plans outlining how they comply with the statement. More information. Policy statement.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236621

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Lockdown easing in ScotlandLockdown easing in Scotland

Scotland's requirement for people to Stay at Home will be removed on 2 April, and be replaced with a message to Stay Local. According to a timetable announced by the First Minister, additional easing is expected on 26 April, including travel restrictions in mainland Scotland being lifted and six people from up to three households being able to meet outside. The hope is that Scotland could move to Level 0 by the end of June.

Timetable for further lockdown easing


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236617

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Joint statement on speaking up to keep people safe - Care Inspectorate WalesJoint statement on speaking up to keep people safe - Care Inspectorate Wales

Speaking up when you are concerned about someone's safety or wellbeing is the focus of a new joint statement from Health Inspectorate Wales and Care Inspectorate Wales. 

Joint statement with HIW: The importance of speaking up | Care Inspectorate Wales


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236615

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Vaccinations for unpaid carers in EnglandVaccinations for unpaid carers in England

The Government have now published guidance on access to vaccinations for those unpaid carers who form part of cohort 6.

You can find out more here.

All eligible unpaid carers will be contacted by the NHS when it's their turn to receive the vaccine.

Unpaid carers over the age of 18, who are not already known to health and care services can contact the National Booking Service or ring 119, to find out if they are eligible to book their vaccination appointment.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236614

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Mencap judgment to be handed down on 19 March 2021Mencap judgment to be handed down on 19 March 2021

The Supreme Court is expected to hand down its long-awaited judgment in the cases of Royal Mencap Society (Respondent) v Tomlinson-Blake (Appellant) and Shannon (Appellant) v Rampersad and another (T/A Clifton House Residential Home) (Respondents) on 19 March 2021 at 9.45 am. The cases concern workers' entitlement to National Minimum Wage while carrying out sleep-in shifts.

The Supreme Court's listing is at: Future judgments - The Supreme Court


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236612

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CPA calls for emergency funding extensionCPA calls for emergency funding extension

The Care Provider Alliance, of which UKHCA are members, have called for the extension of emergency funding for social care.

Below is a full statement from the CPA:

The COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating consequences on adult social care. Like every other industry in the UK, without essential government intervention many social care providers would not have been able to operate to deliver vital services throughout the pandemic.

Emergency funding from the government has been a lifeline. This has consisted of the Adult social care Infection Control Fund first introduced in May 2020 and extended in the autumn - providing over £546m of essential funding to the sector. The Adult Social Care Rapid Testing Fund of £149m and the Workforce Capacity Fund provided an additional £120m to support local authorities and social care providers to maintain safe staffing levels in accordance with the requirements set out in the government’s Winter Plan. All three funds have been critical in facilitating and supporting social care providers to meet government policy and guidance, in the control and management of infections including regular testing of staff and residents; the care workforce and capacity issues; and in the management of safe visits to care homes. It has taken months to get these systems in place to ensure service continuity during what has been an unprecedented onslaught of the COVID-19 virus.

Reports earlier this week from the Chief Medical Officer, Prof. Chris Whitty warns of another surge in coronavirus cases in the UK being inevitable and could hit in late summer, despite the success of the country’s ongoing vaccine rollout. He stressed the need to remain vigilant. Yet the Chancellor in his budget statement last week did not announce any specific measures for social care, despite the imminent end to the emergency funding on 31st March 2021.

Kathy Roberts, Chair of the Care Provider Alliance (CPA), the collective body of adult social care trade associations, said:

“Evidence available to the Care Provider Alliance indicates that less than a third of local authorities have declared their fee rates beyond 1st April. Those that have, are offering 0-2% uplifts which is far short of the increase to the national living wage (NLW), and the sums needed to adequately support social care providers.

“We echo the warning from Prof. Whitty that it is essential to remain vigilant and consistent in the management of reducing the risk of transmission, and call on the government to immediately extend the emergency funding available to the sector as a matter of urgency. The clock is ticking and time is running out. It is vital that care providers have a clear understanding of what measures will be in place to support them to operate after the deadline of 31st March of the emergency funding arrangements.”


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236613

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Launch of modern slavery statement registryLaunch of modern slavery statement registry

The Home Office has launched a registry for organisations to share their modern slavery statements.

The registry will form part of future reporting requirements under section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015, where organisations that meet certain criteria (including an annual turnover of £36 million or more) are required to produce annual modern slavery statements.

Press release on the registry

More on who needs to produce statements and what they contain.

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236611

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New Health and Social Care Intensive Learning Academies in WalesNew Health and Social Care Intensive Learning Academies in Wales

In partnership with Welsh Universities, the Welsh Government has announced over £9m in funding to create three new academies to support the next generation of health and care leaders in Wales.

The Intensive Learning Academies will offer short and flexible academic courses, research and consultancy services.

Press release

Find out more


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236608

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CMA launch a study into children's social care provisionCMA launch a study into children's social care provision

The Competition and Markets Authority have launched a study into children's social care provision in England, Scotland and Wales. They will be looking at the supply of placements, prices charged, commissioning practices and ways to ensure suffiicent availability.

Press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236609

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DNACPR letter to NHS practitioners in EnglandDNACPR letter to NHS practitioners in England

A letter has been issued restating that blanket policies in relation to Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) decisions are inappropriate. The letter emphasises that a person having a learning disability, autism or both should never be a reason for issuing a DNACPR order.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236607

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Senior care workers and domiciliary care managers added to the Shortage Occupation ListSenior care workers and domiciliary care managers added to the Shortage Occupation List

Senior care workers and domiciliary care managers have been added to the Shortage Occupation List.

Commenting on the news, UKHCA's Policy Director Colin Angel said:
 
"We are pleased the Government has taken on board the recommendations of the Migration Advisory Committee and will add senior care workers and domiciliary care managers to the Shortage Occupation List. This will help solve part of a much larger issue which we have called on Government to address for a long time. This will be extremely useful for some social care employers, who should now find it easier in sourcing candidates from outside the UK for hard-to-fill roles, including live-in homecare."

Note for Editors

For further information please contact:

Colin Angel, Policy Director
United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd
Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH
Telephone: 020 8661 8188
Mobile: 07393 012113
E-mail: media@ukhca.co.uk
Website: www.ukhca.co.uk
Twitter: @ukhca


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236606

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Registering home test kits for care workers in England - new guidanceRegistering home test kits for care workers in England - new guidance

New guidance has been published to clarify how to register home test kits used for routine testing of homecare workers in England.

You can access the guidance here:

Registering test kits for homecare workers (publishing.service.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236602

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Research and resources round up week commencing 8 MarchResearch and resources round up week commencing 8 March

Research

NIHR have published a literature review on a strengths based approach to social work and social care.

Hft and Cebr have published their annual Sector Pulse Check. The report finds that 56% of providers report that they are either in deficit or that their surplus has decreased.

The ONS have published data on vaccine hesitancy.

The Health Foundation blog has commented on the Budget and social care.

The National Audit Office have published a report on Local government finance in the pandemic. The report highlights that some local authorities are facing signifiant cost pressures and uncertainties and that many local authorities will be reducing service budgets in 2021-2022.

The Alan Turing Institute have been investigating who is vulnerable to misinformation online

Civitas have published a paper on insurance based funding for social care.

SCIE have published a report from the Commission on the Role of Housing in the Future of Care and Support. This looks at improving housing that facilitates care and support for older people.

The House of Commons Library have produced a briefing giving an overview of Children's social care services in England.

Public First have highlighted the mental health impact of the pandemic in "The Other Pandemic".

Resources

The consent form for COVID-19 vaccinations has been released in BSL format.

The Health and Safety Executive have updated their guidance on Talking with your workers about preventing coronavirus. (Note this isn't social care specific).

An easy read version of the Direct Payments guidance in England has been issued.

SCIE are hosting a webinar on 24 March on providing safe face to face adult day care.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236603

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CQC and Equality and Human Rights Commission sign Memorandum of UnderstandingCQC and Equality and Human Rights Commission sign Memorandum of Understanding

The CQC and the Equality and Human Rights Commission have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on how they will work together to safeguard the wellbeing and rights of those receiving health and social care.

Find out more.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236604

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Shielding, vaccination, testing and other updates for WalesShielding, vaccination, testing and other updates for Wales

The Chief Medical Officer in Wales has advised that the shielding of those who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable should be paused from 1 April. Read the letter.

Twice weekly lateral flow testing for domiciliary care should be extended to supported living staff in services with fewer than 5 residents (you should hear from your local authority).

The Welsh Government has announced that people who are homeless may be prioritised for vaccination. There has also been a clarification on the definition of severe asthma for inclusion in cohort 6.

Guidance has been published on how to book a vaccination if you are an unpaid carer.

Testing is being extended so that tests will be offered to close contacts of positive cases who do not show symptoms in order to identify asymptomatic cases. This will not remove the need to self-isolate. A new framework for the testing of hospital patients has also been published.

The statutory sick pay enhancement scheme has been extended until September.

The workforce risk assessment tool has been updated to include reference to vaccination.

Information on how to get a vaccine if you think you have been missed is available here.

An update has been published on palliative and end of life care.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236605

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Guest blog: How to grow your homecare business despite challenging timesGuest blog: How to grow your homecare business despite challenging times

Tim Jones MBS of UKHCA commercial members Kaizen Business Consultants has contributed a new guest blog entitled: "Guest blog: How to grow your homecare business despite challenging times"

Read it in full here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236601

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Slight relaxation of lockdown rules in ScotlandSlight relaxation of lockdown rules in Scotland

A slight relaxation of lockdown rules in Scotland will enable more people to meet outside. Nicola Sturgeon, the Scottish First Minister, has said that, from this Friday, as many as four adults from two households will have the opportunity to socialise locally in outdoor settings (which includes in private gardens). This could be for exercise, or social and recreational reasons.

Changes to Level 4 restrictions


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236600

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Individuals in Scotland aged between 50 and 59 invited for vaccinationIndividuals in Scotland aged between 50 and 59 invited for vaccination

Individuals in Scotland aged between 50 and 59 will begin receiving invitations this week to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Provided they were not in a higher priority group, people aged 55-59 will start having injections from next week, while the cohort aged from 50 to 54 will begin vaccinations from 22 March.

Under 60s to begin receiving vaccination invitations


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236599

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Census 2021 - How to help someone else complete the censusCensus 2021 - How to help someone else complete the census

Census Day is 21 March 2021. The census is a survey about all the households in England and Wales. Every householder is responsible for completing a questionnaire for their household and should either answer for all household members or ensure they all have their own.

Everyone must complete or be included in the census and provide accurate information. The Census is online, using an access code in the letter about the Census, but people can ask for a paper copy to be posted to them. There is more about the census and how it operates at Census 2021.

People can complete the census on the day or in advance if they answer as if it is 21 March. If they need help, they can:

For those such as care staff who may be asked to help people complete the census, there is guidance on Getting started: Completing the census for someone else This includes a section on helping someone who lacks the capacity to answer for themselves.

There is information on accessibility on the Census website at: Languages and accessibility

The census is also taking place in Northern Ireland on 21 March 2021. More information: https://www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/census. The 2021 census in Scotland was moved to 2022 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236598

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Free coaching offered to health and social service workers in ScotlandFree coaching offered to health and social service workers in Scotland

NHS Education for Scotland (NES) and partners are offering two hours of free online coaching to health and social service workers during the pandemic. Funding has been extended for another 18 months. 

Coaching for Wellbeing - a digital coaching service for all health and social care staff (sssc.uk.com)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236597

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Cross departmental interim autism strategy 2021- 2022Cross departmental interim autism strategy 2021- 2022

A cross departmental interim autism strategy for action in 2021 and 2022 in Northern Ireland has been published by the Department of Health. The strategy focuses on improving support for autistic people, their families and carers, and those waiting assessment, through collaborative working with government departments, the health and social care sector and voluntary and community organisations.

https://www.health-ni.gov.uk/publications/autism-interim-strategy-2021-2022

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236592

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People of 60 and over urged to book their vaccinations in Northern IrelandPeople of 60 and over urged to book their vaccinations in Northern Ireland

Health Minister Robin Swann is urging anyone over 60 to book their appointments as soon as possible at one of Northern Ireland's seven regional trust vaccination centres.

People are asked to book online if possible: Online booking

It is also possible to book by calling 0300 200 7813. Opening hours now extended to 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236593

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New campaign to raise awareness of strokeNew campaign to raise awareness of stroke

The Public Health Agency (PHA) is conducting a public awareness campaign to promote awareness of the signs and symptoms of stroke. This will run in Northern Ireland until 25 April across TV, radio, digital and outdoor media.

The public are reminded to seek urgent medical care if they or someone they know experience any of the symptoms of stroke. The theme is when stroke strikes, act F.A.S.T. call 999.

More information about campaign


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236594

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Update on community testing in ScotlandUpdate on community testing in Scotland

The Scottish Government has issued an update on community testing for COVID-19. More than 10,000 tests have been carried out on asymptomatic people since 18 January, with 251 (2.4%) tests found to be positive.

https://www.gov.scot/news/community-testing-highlights-hidden-cases/


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236595

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New guide for those supporting people with dementiaNew guide for those supporting people with dementia

The Scottish Social Services Council has published information and advice to support Dementia Ambassadors, social services workers and family carers in their role which covers dealing with the impact of current restrictions and changes to routine. 

New guide for Dementia Ambassadors, social service workers and carers


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236596

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Bill to dissolve Health and Social Care Board passes first stageBill to dissolve Health and Social Care Board passes first stage

The Health and Social Care Bill, which provides for the closure of the Health and Social Care Board and transfer of its responsibilities to the Department of Health and Health and Social Care Trusts, passed its first stage on 8 March at the Northern Ireland Assembly.

Official Report

The Bill was also discussed at a recent Health Committee meeting, where MLAs heard more about the history and intentions behind the Bill: Committee for Health Meeting Thursday 4 March 2021 | NI Assembly TV (1 hour 26 minutes onwards).


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236590

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Keeping well at homeKeeping well at home

HSC Public Health Agency has published two leaflets that may be of interest to homecare providers in Northern Ireland:

Keeping well at home: Keeping Well at Home booklet

COVID-19 - how to reduce the spread within your home (infographic)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236589

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Routine testing of care workers updateRoutine testing of care workers update

DHSC are continuing to run webinars for care managers and staff on the routine testing of homecare workers in England (you can book here).

In response to feedback the test kit instructions have been simplified and highlight how to register using a Unique Organisation Number.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236588

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Frontline social care workers can still book vaccination appointments through the National Booking ServiceFrontline social care workers can still book vaccination appointments through the National Booking Service

The initial period of access for social care workers in England to accessing vaccinations via the National Booking Service or by ringing 119 has been extended and is still available.

Care Workforce (adultsocialcare.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236585

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Digital Lifeline Fund to improve digital inclusion for people with learning disabilities on low incomesDigital Lifeline Fund to improve digital inclusion for people with learning disabilities on low incomes

The Government have established a £2.5 million Digital Lifeline Fund to provide devices, data and digital support for people with learning disabilities who can't afford to get online.

Free tablets to improve lives of thousands of people with learning disabilities - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Further information


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UKHCA News ID: 236586

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Intended changes to Coronavirus Act 2020 in WalesIntended changes to Coronavirus Act 2020 in Wales

Later this month the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services in Wales intends to suspend Section 15 and Part 2 of Schedule 12 of the Coronavirus Act 2020. These sections modified the duties of local authorities in Wales as set out in the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014. Concerns were raised about the potential impact of the provisions on individuals with care and support needs.

Written Statement: The Coronavirus Act 2020 (Suspension: Local Authority Care and Support) (Wales) Regulations 2021 (19 February 2021) | GOV.WALES


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UKHCA News ID: 236587

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Testing for extra care and supported living settingsTesting for extra care and supported living settings

Extra care and supported living settings in England that are assessed as high risk will now have access to twice weekly laterl flow testing. Wider settings meeting one of the criteria (relating to whether the care is CQC regulated and if there is a closed community with shared facilities) will also have access to PCR testing on referral from a local authority.

You can access the guidance here

Webinars to inform providers are also available.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236583

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Care home guidance on restricting workforce movementCare home guidance on restricting workforce movement

New guidance has been published for care homes about restricting workforce movements between care homes and other care settings. This may have indirect implications for some homecare providers.

Restricting workforce movement between care homes and other care settings - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


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UKHCA News ID: 236584

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Updates to the Data Security and Protection ToolkitUpdates to the Data Security and Protection Toolkit

NHSx have published changes in relation to the Data Security and Protection Toolkit.

Changes include the end of the 'Entry Level' status regarding level of compliance on 4 March and the introduction of an 'Approaching Standards' status on 5 March 2021. This new status not a direct replacement for the Entry Level status previously included. Resources are available to support providers to reach 'Approaching Standards' and above.

Find out more, including suggested actions for providers, from Digital Social Care.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236582

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NHS England issues advice on DNACPR and people with learning disabilitiesNHS England issues advice on DNACPR and people with learning disabilities

NHS England and NHS Improvement have issued a letter making it clear that people should not have a DNACPR on their record just because they have a learning disability, autism or both. Blanket policies are inappropriate whether due to medical condition, disability, or age. This is particularly important in regard to DNACPR orders, which should only ever be made on an individual basis and in consultation with the individual or their family.

https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/wp-content/uploads/sites/52/2020/04/C1146-dnacpr-and-people-with-a-learning-disability-and-or-autism.pdf


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236591

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New guidance on ventilation of indoor spacesNew guidance on ventilation of indoor spaces

New guidance has been published in England on the ventilation of indoor spaces to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

COVID-19: ventilation of indoor spaces to stop the spread of coronavirus - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236580

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Budget 2021 - Response by United Kingdom Homecare AssociationBudget 2021 - Response by United Kingdom Homecare Association

"An announcement with nothing specific to offer to social care", summarises the United Kingdom Homecare Association's response to the Chancellor's Spring Budget today, 3 March 2021.

UKHCA full media release


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UKHCA News ID: 236577

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Low Pay Commission remit for recommending 2022 National Minimum Wage ratesLow Pay Commission remit for recommending 2022 National Minimum Wage rates

The Government has published its remit to the Low Pay Commission (LPC) outlining what they should consider when recommending the 2022 National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage rates.

This will guide the LPC's consultative process with employers, before they make recommendations to Government later this year.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236575

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Budget 2021 - provisions relevant to businessesBudget 2021 - provisions relevant to businesses

The Budget_2021 contained a range of measures relevant to businesses, which may be of interest to the homecare sector.

Here are selected highlights. The quotes and paragraph numbers relate to the Budget Red Book:

  • Extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme "for a further five months from May until the end of September 2021" (par 2.14, pg. 45)
  • Increase in the National Living Wage from April 2021 to £8.91 (this confirms last year's announcement)
  • Change to the rate of corporation tax paid, depending on the size of the profit (par 2.81, pg. 52)
  • Trading loss carry-back rule for businesses "temporarily extended from the existing one year to three years" (par 2.51, pg. 49-50). 
  • "Companies investing in qualifying new plant and machinery assets will benefit from a 130% first-year capital allowance" (par 2.111, pg. 57). 
  • Fuel duty frozen in 2021-22 (par 2.85, pg. 53)
  • "New UK-wide management programme to upskill 30,000 SMEs in the UK over three years" (par 2.138, pg. 62)
  • New UK-wide scheme to be launched "in the autumn to help 100,000 SMEs save time and money by adopting productivity-enhancing software" (par 2.139, pg. 62)
  • "£1.65 billion for 2021-22 to continue the vaccine deployment programme in England" (par 2.34, pg. 47).

Further Budget documents

UKHCA's media statement on the Budget and measures that are absent:

Budget 2021 - Response by United Kingdom Homecare Association

Budget booklet from UKHCA commercial members, Hazlewoods: Budget booklet 2021.pdf (hazlewoods.co.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236578

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Furlough scheme extended in today's BudgetFurlough scheme extended in today's Budget

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the furlough scheme) will be extended until the end of September, in the Budget. The scheme pays 80% of employees' wages up to a maximum of £2,500 per month if they cannot work due to the pandemic. Employers will have to pay 10% towards this in July, rising to 20% in August and September.

Chancellor extends furlough and loan schemes

Budget 202: More information


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236574

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Care Quality Commission consultation on draft strategy for 2021 - closes 4 MarchCare Quality Commission consultation on draft strategy for 2021 - closes 4 March

The Care Quality Commission is carrying out a formal consultation on its draft strategy 2021, which focuses on four key themes: People and communities, smarter regulation, safety through learning and accelerating improvement. The draft strategy reflects changes to regulation during the pandemic. UKHCA's response to the consultation 

CQC strategy consultation

CQC strategy consultation survey

The consultation closes on 4 March 2021. More information: Project: Strategy 2021: CQC launches strategy consultation (citizenlab.co)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236418

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Northern Ireland Executive publishes pathway out of COVID-19 restrictionsNorthern Ireland Executive publishes pathway out of COVID-19 restrictions

The Northern Ireland Executive has published its pathway out of COVID-19 restrictions, which describes a staged approach to lifting restrictions.

The Pathway outlines nine pathways each of which has five phases, covering areas such as home and community, work, retail and services, education and young people etc. The approach to lifting restrictions will involve monitoring, reviewing and implementing changes to see what effect they have on health, community and economic trends. The pathway does not contain a timetable.

The first easings will be in education, and the Executive's next review of the Coronavirus Regulations is due to take place on 16 March, as part of a four weekly review cycle.

Details and phases of the pathways

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236573

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Research round up week commencing 1 March 2021Research round up week commencing 1 March 2021

A survey that Health for Care commissioned from YouGov has found that nine out of ten MPs say that local government does not have enough resource to meet the growing need for social care services. A majority believe the social care budget should be increased by £7 billion a year over the next two years. Find out more.

ONS statistics: Coronavirus and vaccine attitudes and behaviours in England: over 80s population 15 Feb - 20 Feb

PSSRU have published a summary of their findings from interviews relating to the impact of COVID-19 on the social care workforce.

Statistics on the progress of the vaccination programme, including those on social care staff from Capacity Tracker are available here: Statistics: COVID-19 Vaccinations (england.nhs.uk)

King's Fund blog: Why the market matters in social care

King's Fund blog: Integrated care systems in London: Challenges and opportunities ahead

Public Policy Projects are working on a report about "The Social Care Challenge: Implementing a Connected System. Recent event.

Association of Mental Health Providers blog: Acheiving Racial Equality Together

The Government have responded to the recommendations from the Lords Public Services Committee Report A critical juncture for public services - lessons from COVID-19.

Resources and events

The NHS have published an animated video aimed at people who have received the vaccine: 'What should we do after the vaccine?'

There will be a DBS annual conference on 24 and 25 March. Registration is available here.

LGA and ADASS have produced a short guide on implementing a Home First approach to discharge from hospital.

Skills for Care have published a COVID-19 symptoms management guide for adult social care managers to support their teams when providing care to someone with COVID-19.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236572

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Making Safeguarding Personal - free webinar on 23 March, 2-4 pmMaking Safeguarding Personal - free webinar on 23 March, 2-4 pm

Research in Practice is hosting a free webinar to support the implementation of Making Safeguarding Personal (MSP) in provider organisations. This work has been commissioned by ADASS and the LGA.

The aim of the webinar is to raise awareness of the resources available to support Making Safeguarding Personal and give those in learning and development roles an overview of how to use the resources.

The webinar is an overview of the resources available to support MSP, this includes

  • The MSP toolkit
  • Case Study Resources
  • Myth busting resources

Please note this is a re-run of the previous webinar on Making Safeguarding Personal tools and resources and this session is aimed at people working in provider organisations in England.

You can book here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236570

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Towards seamless working across health and careTowards seamless working across health and care

NHSx has published a blog on 'Towards seamless working across health and care', written by Mandy Thorn (Vice Chair of the National Care Association and Chair of UKHCA member Marches Care Ltd, a provider of nursing and dementia services).

Mandy is a member of the NHSX Social Care IG Group, which takes forward the use of digital technology in social care.

https://www.nhsx.nhs.uk/blogs/towards-seamless-working-across-health-and-care/


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236569

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Resources on when to refer to DBSResources on when to refer to DBS

Guidance on the DBS Regional Outreach service has been amended to include new information around barring referrals, and the legal duty to refer.

This may be useful for organisations who have a legal duty to refer, or the power to refer, and includes a video that explores the information needed as part of a barring referral and why this is important.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-dbs-regional-outreach-service


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236567

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Free CARE badges still availableFree CARE badges still available

DHSC say CARE badges are still available for all staff working in adult social care across England.

If you have placed an order but now need more badges for new and existing staff, please use the link below to place additional orders. Limit one badge per member of staff employed.

Order CARE badges


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236568

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Trauma-Informed adult social care in ScotlandTrauma-Informed adult social care in Scotland

The Improvement Service working with NHS Education for Scotland and the Scottish Government are running an event on 25 March about adopting a trauma-informed approach to adult social care. There is also a trauma-informed workforce survey being undertaken.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236563

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Vaccine and testing update in WalesVaccine and testing update in Wales

The Health Minister in Wales has confirmed that all eligible adults will be vaccinated by 31 July. Schemes for workplaces to carry out testing will also be extended.

Vaccine and testing boost to help re-open Wales safely | GOV.WALES

Written Statement: COVID-19 Workplace Testing (24 February 2021) | GOV.WALES

Some unpaid carers will also be eligible for earlier vaccination as part of cohort 6 in Phase 1, as will people with a severe/profound learning disability and people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or any mental illness that causes severe functional impairment.

COVID-19 vaccination of unpaid carers [HTML] | GOV.WALES

Written Statement: COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy – Guidance for Priority Group 6 (24 February 2021) | GOV.WALES

The Vaccine Strategy has been updated.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236564

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Code of practice for international recruitment of health and social care staffCode of practice for international recruitment of health and social care staff

The DHSC has published a code of practice setting out the principles and best practice benchmarks that health and social care employers and recruitment agencies must follow to ensure effective, ethical international recruitment.

Code of Practice and press article.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236562

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Workforce specialist service to support regulated professionals in ScotlandWorkforce specialist service to support regulated professionals in Scotland

A new Workforce Specialist Service is offering confidential mental health assessment and treatment, to help regulated health and social care professionals with a range of issues such as stress, anxiety, depression or addiction, with a focus on the impact this may have on their work. The initiative is part of Scotland's Wellbeing and Mental Health programme.

Specialist support for health and social care staff


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236561

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Vaccination priorities for Phase 2 to continue with ageVaccination priorities for Phase 2 to continue with age

The Joint Committee on Vaccines and Immunisation (JCVI) has issued an interim statement advising Government that the offer of vaccination during phase 2 of the UK's programme should be age-based, starting with the oldest adults first and proceeding in the following order:

  • all those aged 40 to 49 years
  • all those aged 30 to 39 years
  • all those aged 18 to 29 years

JCVI said this will facilitate rapid vaccine deployment. Mass vaccination targeting occupational groups would be more complex to deliver and may slow down the vaccine programme,

JCVI strongly advised that priority be given to promoting vaccine uptake in groups at higher risk of hospitalisation:

  • men
  • those from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities
  • those with a BMI over 30
  • those living in deprived neighbourhoods

JCVI interim statement on phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination programme Press release

Advice on phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination programme: DHSC statement


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236560

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Updated Strategic Framework provides route of lockdown in ScotlandUpdated Strategic Framework provides route of lockdown in Scotland

The Scottish Government has published an updated Strategic Framework which sets out the six tools it will use to ease the country out of lockdown.

Easing will be on a phased basis with a gap between each reduction in restrictions so the impact can be assessed.

More information on the detail of easing:

Gradually easing lockdown restrictions


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236558

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More people with learning disabilities to be invited for vaccineMore people with learning disabilities to be invited for vaccine

JCVI has issued advice supporting the NHS operational plan to invite anyone on the GP Learning Disability Register, as well as adults with other related conditions, including cerebral palsy, for vaccination as part of priority group 6.

This will involve the NHS working with local authorities to identify adults in residential and nursing care, and those who require support living in the community, and in shared accommodation with multiple occupancy.

JCVI advises inviting people on Learning Disability Register for vaccine

Letter from the Health and Social Care Secretary on COVID-19 vaccination in people with learning disabilities


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236557

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How UKHCA has supported homecare providers during the pandemicHow UKHCA has supported homecare providers during the pandemic

˜How UKHCA has supported home care providers through the COVID-19 pandemic' is the theme of a special report by Homecare Insight.

Drawing on an overview given by Dr Jane Townson, CEO of UKHCA, to the Home Care Research Forum, hosted by King's College London, the special report looks at UKHCA's work over the past year, representing the homecare sector as the COVID-19 pandemic has unfolded.

SPECIAL REPORT: How UKHCA has supported home care providers through the COVID-19 pandemic


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Social care communications survey closes todaySocial care communications survey closes today

DHSC's survey on social care COVID-19 communications closes at the end of today, 24 February 2021. To have your say, see: 

https://dhexchange.kahootz.com/connect.ti/COVID19SOCIALCARECOMMS/view?objectId=7160259

The survey should take no more than 5 minutes to complete.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236556

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Update from the Scottish Social Services CouncilUpdate from the Scottish Social Services Council

The Scottish Social Services Council have advised that:

  • Overdue registration fees should be paid by 1 March 2021. Anyone experiencing financial hardship should contact accounts.receivable@sssc.uk.com
  • Workers due to meet qualification conditions between March 2020 and March 2021 were given an extra year to qualify. This will be extended. Anyone due to meet qualification conditions in 2021 will be given a further year if needed.
  • The deadline for workers to register with SSSC was extended from 6 to 12 months on 25 March 2020. This means that any workers who started in late March of early April 2020 will need to register soon if they haven't done so.

Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236554

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Research and resources round up week commencing 22nd FebruaryResearch and resources round up week commencing 22nd February

PHE have published data demonstrating the efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine. The results suggest taht 1 dose reduces the risk of infection by 70% rising to 85% after the second dose. News item. Study.

LSE have published a report on The Conservative Governments; Record on Social Policy from May 2015 to pre-Covid 2020: Policies, Spending and Outcomes. The report draws attention to high levels of unmet need in adult social care with two out of five older people in the most deprived areas not receiving the help that they needed in 2018.

The Health Foundation and the Institute for Fiscal Studies have projected that 458,000 additional social care staff would be needed in England by 2033/34 in evidence provided to the Health and Social Care Committee.

The Government Equalities Minister has published a second report on COVID-19 disparities.

Resources

COVID-19 vaccine information is now available in a number of different languages

NICE are holding a launch event for their 5 year strategy on 19 April.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236552

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Roadmap out of the lockdown in EnglandRoadmap out of the lockdown in England

Following an announcement by the Prime Minister, the Government has published a roadmap out of lockdown for Spring 2021 in England. Press release.

The roadmap is available here:

COVID-19 Response - Spring 2021 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Key points include:

  • The Prime Minister has confirmed a 'stretching target' to offer a first vaccine dose to every adult by the end of July.
  • Progression of the release from lockdown will depend on: the progress of the vaccination programme, the evidence that vaccines are reducing hospitalisations and deaths, the infection rate and the risks associated with new variants.
  • The Clinically Extremely Vulnerable will be advised to shield at least until the end of March.

As a broad outline (see the above document for details) the stages of lockdown release are as follows, there will be at least five weeks between each step:

  • Step one - from 8 March pupils and students in all schools and further education will return to face to face teaching. People will be able to meet outside one to one socially. Every care home resident will be able to nominate a named visitor.
  • On 29 March it will be possible to meet in groups of six or in groups of two households outdoors.
  • Step two - no earlier than 12 April - non-essential retail shops will reopen as will hairdressers, nail salons and other personal care facilities. Leisure facilities and holiday lets will be available for individuals or houshold groups. Outdoor dining and pubs will be able to reopen as will zoos, public libraries and some other venues.
  • Step three - no earlier than 17 May - meeting friends and family indoors and the opening of indoor hospitality venues may be possible.
  • Step four - no earlier than 21 June - with appropriate mitigations, all legal limits on social contact will be removed.

Further reviews will be undertaken on: how long social distancing measures and face coverings need to be maintained and how long people should work from home; when international travel can resume; the safety of holding major events; and the potential of Covid-status certification.

The 3 March budget is expected to set out further detail on economic support for individuals and businesses.

A JCVI announcement is expected regarding who will be prioritised for vaccination during Phase 2 of the vaccination programme (i.e. from mid-April onwards for those under 50s who are not deemed clinically vulnerable).

The lockdown guidance has been updated to outline changes from 8 March.

Comms resources


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Testing of close contacts in Scotland will help identify asymptomatic casesTesting of close contacts in Scotland will help identify asymptomatic cases

From 18 February, people who have been identified as a close contact via the Protect Scotland app, or through manual contact tracing, will be given instructions on how to book a PCR test.

This measure does not replace self-isolation, and close contacts who test negative will still have to complete 10 days of self-isolation, as there is still a risk the virus could develop.

Close contacts who test positive will be asked to self-isolate for a further 10 days from the time of their test result.

Close contacts to be offered testing


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236546

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Care home visits to re-start in March in ScotlandCare home visits to re-start in March in Scotland

The Scottish Government is to publish guidelines on 24 February to support care providers when care home visiting is resumed. Up to two designated visitors per resident will be allowed from early March. 

Visitors will have to wear face coverings and any PPE requested by the care home. They are strongly encouraged to take a COVID test on-site. 

Care home visits to resume


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236547

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Health Secretary gives an update on vaccination in ScotlandHealth Secretary gives an update on vaccination in Scotland

Health and Sport Secretary Jeane Freeman has given an update on vaccination. As of 19 February, 1,386,152 people had received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccination and 29,015 people have received the second dose.

287,800 frontline health and social care workers have been vaccinated, exceeding the initial target provided by Health Boards.

The update describes preparations to identify and vaccinate the next cohort, cohort 6, which comprises people aged 16-64 years with underlying health conditions and unpaid carers.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236549

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Infection control remains important in Scotland, as schools partially re-openInfection control remains important in Scotland, as schools partially re-open

The Scottish Government is reminding the public about the importance of the FACTS advice and all other rules and guidelines. The campaign will stress the need for everyone to stay on their guard, even as the vaccination programme is rolled out.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: Deputy First Minister's statement - 19 February 2021

From 22 February, children are returning to early learning and childcare, and to primaries 1 to 3.A very limited number of senior phase students will return to secondary school, for essential work which is required for national qualifications, and which can only be done within school. The measures are accompanied by a testing regime. More information:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: Deputy First Minister's statement - 19 February 2021


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236550

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MSPs report on future of care and support in ScotlandMSPs report on future of care and support in Scotland

The Health and Sport Committee's report on The Future of Social Care and Support in Scotland, which follows the Committee's inquiry that started before the pandemic, concludes:

  • Future reform must be developed and delivered with the individuals who are most impacted.
  • There should be a prevention-focused approach to enable people to live longer, healthier lives at home.
  • There should be a national conversation about reform, and increased public understanding of the role of social care, with improved recognition of the value and status of carers.
  • Local partnerships must be supported to deliver creative, innovative solutions, focussing on well-being outcomes for individuals and communities. There should be an agreed strategic aim and measured outcomes, with improved data collection and monitoring of progress.

Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236559

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ICF2 funding can cover administrative costs of testing and vaccinationICF2 funding can cover administrative costs of testing and vaccination

Criteria for the distribution of Infection Control Fund 2 have been extended to include reasonable administrative costs associated with organising and recording the outcomes of COVID-19 tests and organising COVID-19 vaccinations.

This change is the result of repeated requests from UKHCA to the Department of Health and Social Care.

Distribution in this way is subject to local authority discretion and only applies where costs are not supported by other government funding streams.

The guidance on Infection Control Fund 2 now contains an additional paragraph:

"On 19 February 2021, the Department clarified that funding under this allocation could also be used for reasonable administrative costs associated with (1) organising and recording the outcomes of COVID-19 tests and (2) organising COVID-19 vaccinations, where these were not being supported by other government funding streams. The decision to allow claims against the fund for these purposes would remain a choice for local authorities and no additional funding is being provided for these purposes."


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236543

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Psychological First Aid training for those supporting children and young peoplePsychological First Aid training for those supporting children and young people

From Monday 22 February, people who care for or work with children and young people aged up to 25 who have been affected by COVID-19 (or other emergencies or individual crises) can access an online Psychological First Aid (PFA) training course.

This offers training on how to provide practical and emotional support to children and young people affected by emergencies or crisis situations. 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236544

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Draft data adequacy decisionsDraft data adequacy decisions

The European Commission has published draft data adequacy decisions that, if approved, will mean that the UK will be found to be 'adequate'. Data adequacy, if agreed, will allow personal data to continue to flow between EU and EEA countries and the UK.

There is currently a 'bridging mechanism' that will remain in place until 30 June or until the adeqacy decision comes into effect. If the European Commission grants an adequacy decision, then no action will need to be taken by social care providers. Digital Social Care had previously advised to consider what action might be required if adequacy is not granted as a contingency.

We await the final decision.

See previous Digital Social Care advice.

UK government welcomes the European Commission's draft data adequacy decisions - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


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Recruitment campaign says there's 'More to Care Than Caring'Recruitment campaign says there's 'More to Care Than Caring'

The rewards and job satisfaction of a career in adult social care are highlighted in a new Scottish Government campaign to attract recruits to the sector. The new campaign, which has a dedicated website, caretocare.scot, runs for four weeks to mid-March, and draws on the values needed to work in adult social care and the benefits of working in care.

More on the Scottish Social Services Council website: There's More to Care Than Caring' campaign

Organisations can find out more about how to advertise their jobs here.

There is a toolkit available at www.caretocare.scot/stakeholder-resources

The campaign also links to SSSC's careers website

Follow #LifeChangingWork on social media.

There is a careers in adult social care workshop on 4 March 2021: There's more to care than caring - Adult Social Care


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236548

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Update regarding lockdown in WalesUpdate regarding lockdown in Wales

The First Minister has announced that the lockdown will continue a further three weeks. However, there will be some changes including:

  • younger children and some of those requiring practical learning returning to school from 22 February
  • up to 4 people from 2 households allowed to meet to exercise in a public place from 20 February
  • wedding venues allowed to open for weddings from 1 March
  • talented athletes to resume training
  • care home visiting guidance will be reviewed.

Lockdown to continue for further three weeks as pupils return to school | GOV.WALES

A strategy document has also been published outlining a Coronavirus control plan for coming out of lockdown.

Coronavirus control plan: alert levels in Wales (coming out of lockdown) | GOV.WALES


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236541

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Expansion of eligibility for self-isolation support payment in WalesExpansion of eligibility for self-isolation support payment in Wales

The £500 Self-Isolation Support Payment, which has been extended until June 2021, will be open to applications from people with a personal income of less than £500 per week and those on basic Stautory Sick Pay who have been asked to self-isolate by Test, Trace, Protect, the NHS COVID-19 App or by their child's education setting.

Eligibility criteria for the Self-Isolation Support Payment widened | GOV.WALES


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236542

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Read our latest "Good news stories and innovation from the homecare sector"Read our latest "Good news stories and innovation from the homecare sector"

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

Caremark Dacorum
Agincare
Kemble at Home
Promedica24
Right at Home Colchester
SweetTree Homecare
Charlesworth Community Care
Home Instead Scarborough
Inter County
Bluebird Care Swale
Helping Hands Gloucester
Caring Connections

Read in full here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236540

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Challenges of homecare in rural areas covered on BBC Radio 4 Farming TodayChallenges of homecare in rural areas covered on BBC Radio 4 Farming Today

The challenges of homecare in rural areas has been covered on BBC Radio 4 Farming Today (item starts at 8m47s). UKHCA worked collabaratively with Radio 4 with regards to this piece and it features UKHCA members.

The feature recognises the significantly higher costs of careworkers’ travel time and mileage is essential when councils commission care for people in rural communities.

Listen here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236539

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Additional funding for devolved administrationsAdditional funding for devolved administrations

The UK Government has provided additional funding to the devolved administrations in order to provide support to people, businesses and public services affected by coronavirus. This includes:


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236535

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Social Care Worker Card in Wales - updateSocial Care Worker Card in Wales - update

Social Care Wales have advised that they are currently only issuing digital versions of the social care worker card and are moving towards a new digital version.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236536

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Report highlights challenges of responding to pandemic in ScotlandReport highlights challenges of responding to pandemic in Scotland

A report by Audit Scotland has concluded that the Scottish Government could have been better prepared to respond to the pandemic, but staff across the NHS and Scottish Government have worked hard, in challenging circumstances, to respond.

PPE procurement should be improved, national pandemic guidance for health and social care should be updated, as a priority, as should the integrated workforce plan, and NHS leaders, particularly those newly appointed, should have the support they need to balance the ongoing challenges presented by Covid-19 with the need to remobilise health and social care services.

NHS in Scotland 2020 (audit-scotland.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236537

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Independent review findings accepted by Scottish GovernmentIndependent review findings accepted by Scottish Government

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman has accepted the findings of the Independent Review of Adult Social Care, and said the Scottish Government is working to implement key recommendations.

Measures implemented include new £20 million Community Living Change Fund to redesign services for people with complex needs including intellectual disabilities and autism, and for people who have enduring mental health problems. 

The Scottish Government is discussing plans for a National Care Service with COSLA and working to implement Review recommendations to:

  • work with local partners to end charging for non-residential care
  • develop minimum standards for terms and conditions in the social care sector, to help organisations meet fair work principles by the end of May
  • work to ensure there is no delay in the annual Real Living Wage uplift for Adult Social Care workers.

Backing for Feeley Review recommendations - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)




Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236538

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Weekly testing available for personal assistants in EnglandWeekly testing available for personal assistants in England

NHS Test and Trace is making weekly COVID-19 testing available to personal assistants working in adult social care in England, if they provide care that requires them to come within 2 metres of an adult over the age of 18 who they support.

A 'personal assistant' is defined as someone who is directly employed by an individual (or self-employed) to provide care and support to enable them to live as independently as possible, including support in the home or out in the community.

Personal assistants will be responsible for ordering test kits every 28 days, or an employer can order test kits for their personal assistant.

Further information and sign up for live webinars


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236534

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Expansion of shielding list in EnglandExpansion of shielding list in England

The list of people advised to shield will be expanded in England.

A new method of predicting risk based on factors recorded in medical records will be deployed. This will identify up to 1.7 million additional people who are at increased risk from coronavirus. Those identified will be sent a letter from NHS England to advise them of their status, GPs will also be notified.

Those who are newly identified as being at risk but have not already received their first vaccination (thought to be over 800,000 adults) will be prioritised to receive a vaccination.

New technology to help identify those at high risk from COVID-19 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Updated shielding guidance

Letters to those identified


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236531

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Return to school for some children in Scotland from 22 FebruaryReturn to school for some children in Scotland from 22 February

From 22 February, children in early learning and childcare and primaries 1-3 will return to classroom teaching.

Those in S4-S6 who need to undertake pratical work to acheive an SQA certificate will also return.

However, the majority of pupils will still be learning remotely until at least mid-March.

Remote learning to continue for majority - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236532

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COVID-19 workforce risk assessment tool updated in WalesCOVID-19 workforce risk assessment tool updated in Wales

The Welsh Government's COVID-19 Workforce Risk Assessment Tool has been updated. This can be useful where there is a change of circumstances as well as for initial or routine assessments.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236533

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Research and resources round up week commencing 15 February 2021Research and resources round up week commencing 15 February 2021

Research

The CQC, working with other organisations, has deveoped six principles for innovation in health and social care.

John Penrose MP has published an Independent Report on consumer protection and competition policy.

COVID-19 report - planning for a vaccine Part 1 - from the Public Accounts Committee.

Audit Scotland have published a report on the NHS in Scotland in 2020.

The Department of Health in Northern Ireland have published new statistics on domiciliary care services for 2019.

A report synthesising the findings of five NIHR projects on implementing the Care Act 2014 has been published.

Social Care Wales have publlished a report on research prioritisation. Following a project to identify priorities with 400 older people, carers and social care practitioners, 10 priorities for research have been identified. Read the report.

The Chair of the Health and Social Care Committee has written to the Minister of State for Care expressing disappointment that the Ministers had not addressed key recommendations in the Social care: funding and workforce report.

The APPG on Housing and Care for Older People have published a report Housing for people with dementia - are we ready?

The EHRC briefing on the National Disability Strategy has suggested that reforming the social care system should be a key area of focus, including that the Government should: "Commit to sustained resourcing of social care services during and after the pandemic, including provision of sufficient home and community-based support ".

The Scottish Parliament Citizen's Panel on COVID-19 has called for increased recognition of social care and support.

Resoures and events

The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland are running a series of webinars on equality in the workplace. Find out more.

Social Care Wales have updated their All Wales Basic Safeguarding Training Pack.

The CQC are holding a webinar on their "Changes for more flexible and responsive regulation" consultation on 3 March. Further information.

For those who missed it, Social Care Wales have uploaded their webinar on the Care first Employee Assistance Scheme. You can watch it here.

ADASS are running a series of webinars on the EU Settlement Scheme, including one on 25 February aimed at care providers. Find out more.

New social media resources are available including profile picture frames that say 'I'll get my vaccine' or 'I've had my vaccine'. 

Comms resources in Wales: Keep Wales Safe, Business Wales Tool Kit


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236529

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Definition of social care workers for COVID-19 vaccines in WalesDefinition of social care workers for COVID-19 vaccines in Wales

The Welsh Government have published guidance on who is considered a social care worker for the purpose of COVID-19 vaccination in Wales.

Eligibility is based on the vulnerability of the person in receipt of care or support (due to age or underlying health conditions, for example) and the nature of support that is provided (e.g. personal care, close regular or prolonged contact where social distancing is not possible).

The guidance clarifies that eligibility is not based on location of where care and support is delivered or whether the care worker is employed by a local authority, in the independent sector, by an agency or is self employed.

The guidance also lists those who are unlikely to be eligible - this includes administrative staff, managers and other staff who are not providing care and support to vulnerable people.

Read the guidance in full here.

The full list of vaccine priority groups is available here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236530

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Highlighted updates to GOV.UK week commencing 15 FebruaryHighlighted updates to GOV.UK week commencing 15 February

Self isolation guidance is now available in easy read.

An illustrated example of household self isolation periods has been added.

Guidance for children's social care providers has been published on inspector's review of records held on electronic systems


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236526

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New border regulations in force todayNew border regulations in force today

A reminder that the new border controls to reduce risks around new COVID variants coming to the UK are in force from today.

Robust border regime comes into force - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Additional testing requirements (on day 2 and 8 of quarantine) will also apply for travellers to Wales. In addition, travelleres to Wales coming from a travel ban country will need to arrive at a designated port in England or Scotland and should complete their mandatory quarantine before travelling to Wales.

Written Statement: Written Statement on the Health Protection Regulations (13 February 2021) | GOV.WALES

Arriving in Wales from overseas | GOV.WALES


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236527

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Vaccine uptake plan aims to boost uptake in under-served groupsVaccine uptake plan aims to boost uptake in under-served groups

The Government has published the COVID-19 vaccination uptake plan which sets out how the government and NHS England are partnering with directors of public health, charities and the faith sector to increase vaccine take up and ensure equal access. The plan aims to boost vaccine uptake in vulnerable and under-served groups.

New vaccine uptake plan published - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

The move came as online bookings for vaccinations were extended to frontline health and social care workers, as well as those of 65 and over and clinically extremely vulnerable people: Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine - NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Blog by Dr Jane Townson, CEO of UKHCA: Vaccination for the homecare nation - Social care (blog.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236524

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Announcement - UKHCA – Appointment of Finance and Corporate Services DirectorAnnouncement - UKHCA – Appointment of Finance and Corporate Services Director

Last year, United Kingdom Homecare Association’s (UKHCA’s) Finance and Corporate Services Director, Peter Randall, indicated his intention to retire on 31 March 2021, after nearly 22 years of valuable and committed service to the Association.

Following national advertising, executive search and a thorough recruitment process, we are delighted to announce the appointment of Keith Williams as UKHCA’s new Finance and Corporate Services Director.

Keith is a highly experienced and senior Finance and Corporate Services Director who has worked in the not-for-profit, charitable and commercial sectors.

Keith is currently Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at the London Grid for Learning, a charity which is the leading provider of broadband services to schools and local authorities in London and the Home Counties.

Before this, Keith was Finance Director at the National Education Union, the 4th largest trade union in the UK, with more than 500,000 members and income of over £50m from membership fees and commercial revenues.

Much of Keith’s earlier career was spent in the private healthcare sector, at the London Clinic and St Martin’s Healthcare Ltd.

As CFO at the London Clinic, London’s largest independent multi-site private healthcare facility, with a turnover of more than £140m, Keith drove a £75m capital expansion programme. This included a new Cancer Centre and introduction of robotic surgery technology in the hospitals.

Keith trained at Deloitte and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.

UKHCA’s Chair, Dominique Kent said:

“Warm thanks to Peter Randall for his dedication to UKHCA over many years. We are really pleased to welcome Keith Williams who brings strong skills and experience to contribute to our work”.

UKHCA’s CEO Jane Townson said:

“The retirement of our Finance and Corporate Service Director, Peter Randall, after over two decades of dedicated service, feels like the end of an era and his are big shoes to fill. We are, however, delighted to announce the appointment of Keith Williams as Peter’s successor. Keith’s background, skills, experience and personal attributes will enable him to make a valuable contribution to the work of the Association and we very much look forward to welcoming him to our team on 22 March 2021.”

Keith Williams said:

“The ongoing pandemic has highlighted how important the homecare sector is to those being supported and to wider society and at the same time how undervalued it has been historically. I am greatly looking forward to the opportunity to help redress this balance by bringing the skills and experience I have acquired throughout my career so far to UKHCA.”

An image of Keith is available here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236520

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Some Councils are now offering rapid lateral flow community testing for people without symptomsSome Councils are now offering rapid lateral flow community testing for people without symptoms

Some local councils in England are offering rapid lateral flow tests to people in the community who do not have symptoms.

Find out if your area offers rapid lateral flow test sites - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236522

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Quarantine hotels and travel restrictions - further guidance issuedQuarantine hotels and travel restrictions - further guidance issued

Further guidance has been issued today on the increased travel restrictions, featuring additional testing for all travellers and quarantine hotels for countries on the travel ban list, from Monday 15 February.

The guidance is as follows:

Government to introduce tougher measures and enforcement rules for quarantined passengers - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

(for countries on the travel ban list): Booking and staying in a quarantine hotel when you arrive in England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

(for countries not on the travel ban list): How to quarantine when you arrive in England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236521

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Adult social care recruitment campaign from DHSC launchesAdult social care recruitment campaign from DHSC launches

The next phase of the adult social care recruitment campaign from the Department of Health and Social Care has now been launched.

Get involved in the latest campaign by visiting their website.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236519

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UKHCA on the blueprint for social care reform white paperUKHCA on the blueprint for social care reform white paper

The blueprint for NHS and social care reform following the pandemic has been launched by the Department of Health and Social Care.

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

“Today’s White Paper promises to lay some of the foundations for longer-term reform of the adult social care system in England, including a more joined-up approach to social care and health. Of particular interest is what could be an answer to UKHCA’s consistent calls for greater oversight and accountability of the commissioning of social care by local government and the NHS. If delivered well, this could ensure that market-shaping responsibilities in the Care Act 2014 are properly met. Improved powers for the Secretary of State to make payments directly to adult social care providers, where appropriate, will provide a way of avoiding delays which have characterised emergency funding during the pandemic”.

Notes for Editors

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

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

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

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236517

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UKHCA on the COVID-19 National Booking System for social care staffUKHCA on the COVID-19 National Booking System for social care staff

The National Booking System has now been opened, for eligible #homecare workers (and other frontline #socialcare staff) who haven’t yet had their COVID-19 vaccinations.

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

"For over a month UKHCA has urged the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England to provide an effective system which will help careworkers undertaking 24-hour live-in care services to receive a vaccination wherever in the country they are currently on placement. The National Booking Service is a major breakthrough for the live-in care sector, and for the entire social care workforce who haven’t yet been able to be booked into their vaccination appointments."

Notes for Editors

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

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

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


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236518

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Vaccination booking details for those aged 70 and over in WalesVaccination booking details for those aged 70 and over in Wales

The Welsh government have provided details of how those aged 70 and over who have not been contacted about vaccination can book themselves COVID-19 vaccinations. Arrangements vary by health board and details can be found on this web page:

Coronavirus vaccinations for those aged 70 or over | GOV.WALES


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236516

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Recruitment in ScotlandRecruitment in Scotland

Today, the Scottish Government are launching the next phase of their recruitment campaign "There's More to Care Than Caring".

Care providers have the opportunity to advertise vacancies for free for the next three months on myjobscotland. Support on promoting vacancies is also available.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236515

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Research and Resources round up week commencing 8 FebruaryResearch and Resources round up week commencing 8 February

The Kings Fund have published a report on "Stories from social care leadership: Progress amid pestilence and penury".

The Welsh Government have published an Evaluation of the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014, part of ongoing work to review the legislation. Ministerial statement. Evaluation reports 

The Public Accounts Committee in the UK Government have published a report on Government procurement and supply of PPE. One finding of the report was that "The Department's focus on supporting hospitals meant assistance to social care providers was neglected."

Providers 'must be proactive' in challenging lack of fees to cover COVID costs - Emma Watt of Anthony Collins Solicitors in Home Care Insight.

The Care Policy Evaluation Centre have published a report on Supporting [unpaid] Carers following the implementatioon of the Care Act 2014. The report found that "the impact of strengthened carer rights appears to have been limited by the requirement for local authorities to keep within budget, and as a result these rights have not led to greater access to support for carers."

A report released by the County Councils Network looks at the potential of social care to support more people to live independently. The report advocates for social care delivery remaining with local authorities. County Councils Network news item with links to report.

Events

Care Inspectorate Scotland are hosting a Covid Winter Support Webinar Level 3 on the Essentials of Safe Care on 17 March. Click here to book.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236514

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Hotel quarantine for all international travellers to Scotland from Monday 15 FebruaryHotel quarantine for all international travellers to Scotland from Monday 15 February

The Transport Secretary, Michael Matheson, has said that all international arrivals to Scottish airports would need to quarantine in managed hotel facilities from Monday 15 February. Arrangements for costs, possible exemptions and a welfare fund to support those unable to pay are being considered.

This goes further than arrangements proposed in England that cover mandatory hotel isolation only for travellers from countries on the travel ban list.

Incoming travellers to Scotland will face quarantine hotels from Monday | The Scotsman

Quarantine hotels - gov.scot


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236512

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Further details on quarantine hotel announcementFurther details on quarantine hotel announcement

Today the Department of Health and Social Care announced further details around the previously announced (see news items from 5 Feb, 2 Feb) new quarantine measures that will come into force from 15 February.

These include that:

  • All passengers arriving in England will need to take COVID-19 tests on day 2 and day 8 of quarantine.
  • There will be heavy financial penalties, and potentially prison sentences, for non-compliance.
  • Those who have been to a 'red list' country (from which there is a travel ban) will need to purchase a 'quarantine package' covering hotel, food, testing, transport, security and welfare support at a cost of £1,750 for a single adult.

Government to introduce tougher measures and enforcement rules for quarantined passengers - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Coronavirus (COVID-19): how to self-isolate when you travel to England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236511

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Free PPE for unpaid carersFree PPE for unpaid carers

Working with local authorities and local resilience forums, the government has announced an offer of free PPE to unpaid carers who do not live with the person they care for.

Free PPE for unpaid carers - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236510

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Cold weather alert extended in EnglandCold weather alert extended in England

Public Health England have extended their cold weather alert until midday on Friday.

Cold weather alert issued by PHE - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Public Health England's cold weather plan

UKHCA's updated winter planning factsheet

For online winter weather help and advice in other parts of the UK, see:

Wales https://phw.nhs.wales/services-and-teams/environmental-public-health/extreme-cold-weather/

Scotland https://ready.scot/respond/severe-weather/cold-snow-and-ice

Northern Ireland https://www.publichealth.hscni.net/publications/stay-well-winter

For weather warnings, see Met Office UK Severe Weather Warnings: www.metoffice.gov.uk/public/weather/warnings


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236509

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Government urges those aged 70 and over to book a COVID-19 vaccinationGovernment urges those aged 70 and over to book a COVID-19 vaccination

The Government is urging people who do not already have an appointment to book a vaccination if they are aged 70 or over, or clinically extremely vulnerable. They do not need to wait for a letter.

The suggested way is through the National Booking Service, online at nhs.uk. Or people who are not online can call 119 or their local GP practice.

Health and Social Care Secretary's statement on coronavirus (COVID-19): 8 February 2021

This applies in England. Other arrangements apply in the devolved nations.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236507

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Asymptomatic testing expanded in EnglandAsymptomatic testing expanded in England

Businesses can order tests for their employees if they have over 50 staff. Government boost to rapid workplace testing This is a new government drive to increase workplace testing in sectors open during lockdown, to detect coronavirus in people who are not showing symptoms.

In addition surge testing is taking place in postcodes CR4, EN10, GU21, ME15, N17, PR9, W7, WS2, where a COVID-19 variant has been found. Everyone over 16 is strongly encouraged to get a coronavirus (COVID-19) test. This has been extended to targeted areas around Manchester in M14 4, M14 7, M15 5, M15 6, M16 7 and M16 8: Surge testing to be deployed in areas around Manchester in connection to new variants

Find out how to get a test as part of surge testing from the local authority website (enter postcode).


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236508

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GPs receive £10 bonus to vaccinate those at homeGPs receive £10 bonus to vaccinate those at home

NHS England is to pay GPs an extra £10 for every COVID vaccination they deliver to someone who is housebound. The move is to ensure the most vulnerable people are vaccinated as swiftly as possible.

Dr Jane Townson, CEO of UKHCA, tweeted: "It is great to see the importance recognised of reaching everybody, especially people who struggle or are unable to get out. People with dementia and frailty need to be considered too."

The £10 per visit additional funding recognises the extra staff time and complexity of vaccinating the housebound and applies retrospectively to home visits already made by GPs to vaccinate people at home.

NHS England announcement: GPs receive funding boost to vaccinate housebound in NHS drive to protect most vulnerable


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236505

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Draft Health White Paper outlines plans for wide-ranging reformDraft Health White Paper outlines plans for wide-ranging reform

Draft text of the Government's new Health White Paper obtained by Health Policy Insight outlines plans for health care reform that could have potentially far-ranging effects, if implemented. The proposals, which do not include plans for wider social care reform due separately this year, include putting Integrated Care Systems on a statutory footing and enabling legislation for adult social care that includes:

  • A new assurance framework that would give the Care Quality Commission a new duty to assess local authorities' delivery of their adult social care duties, alongside powers for the Secretary of State to intervene where there is a risk of failure to meet these duties.
  • Powers for the Secretary of State to collect data from local authorities and providers, including that on self-funders, fee rates, hours of care and their cost per person, plus data on financial flows.
  • Powers for the Secretary of State to make direct payments to providers for specific purposes, for example, emergency payments during the pandemic. These would not replace the normal procedures local authorities use to purchase care.
  • Provisions for improving hospital discharge processes, making the Better Care Fund more flexible, changing the procurement of healthcare services, and powers to reduce the number of regulators of health professionals, among other proposals.

Most of the provisions apply to England, though there are some which apply to devolved nations.

UKHCA was one of the stakeholders involved in discussions with Government on some of the themes developed in the draft White Paper.

Draft text of the Government's new Health White Paper

Health Policy Insight commentary


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Businesses given greater flexibility to pay back Bounce Back loansBusinesses given greater flexibility to pay back Bounce Back loans

The Government has announced that UK businesses which took out government-backed Bounce Back Loans to get through the COVID-19 pandemic will have greater flexibility to repay their loans, with Pay as You Grow flexible repayment options.

News story on Pay as You Grow flexible repayment options


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UKHCA News ID: 236506

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Staff absence notifications in ScotlandStaff absence notifications in Scotland

The Care Inspectorate in Scotland have updated their COVID-19 staff absence notifications. This includes a new question on staff absences for any reason (not just COVID), and a new category to capture staff absences related to ongoing COVID symptoms or long COVID.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236503

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Confirmation of mandatory hotel quarantine for travel ban countriesConfirmation of mandatory hotel quarantine for travel ban countries

The Government has confirmed that mandatory quarantine facilities will come into use from 15 February 2021 for countries on the travel ban list. Further details will be published next week about how travellers can book the designated facilities.

Government confirms mandatory hotel quarantine to be introduced from 15 February - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236500

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Rolling out routine testing to day centresRolling out routine testing to day centres

Work is beginning to roll out routine, asymptomatic testing to staff at day centres in England.

Guidance is available here

Information on testing is here

If you run a day centre, you can book to find out more via a webinar here.


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UKHCA News ID: 236501

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Recruitment campaign: Every Day is DifferentRecruitment campaign: Every Day is Different

A reminder that providers in England who wish to advertise via the Everyday is Different recruitment campaign for social care can find details of how to do so here.

Individuals looking for work can find out more via this website.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236502

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Final local government settlement for England 2021 to 2022Final local government settlement for England 2021 to 2022

The Government have published the final local government settlement for England for the 2021 to 2022 financial year. You can find the details at:

Final local government finance settlement: England, 2021 to 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236499

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Independent review of adult social care in Scotland - report publishedIndependent review of adult social care in Scotland - report published

The independent review of adult social care support in Scotland, led by Derek Feeley, has handed their report to the Scottish Government.

Recommendations include:

  • Setting up a National Care Service, to ensure strategic integration with the National Health Service.
  • Appointing a minister specifically for Social Care, with legal responsibility and accountability for social care passing from local authorities to ministers.
  • Making social care free 'at the point of need', like the NHS, with increased funding and a human rights-based approach to care.
  • The service should not be nationalised and the current use of private, third sector and public care providers should carry on.

Independent Review of Adult Care in Scotland (www.gov.scot)

Video about the Review: https://youtu.be/_bEt9NwtXpE


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UKHCA News ID: 236495

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Progress of vaccination of homecare workers against COVID-19Progress of vaccination of homecare workers against COVID-19

UKHCA’s CEO, Dr Jane Townson has written a blog entitled: "Progress of vaccination of homecare workers against COVID-19". The information of which is correct on the 2nd February 2021.

A rapid survey of homecare providers’ experience of vaccination of the homecare workforce in England against COVID-19 was conducted by United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) from 27 to 29 January 2021. The survey covered employers of staff who are in group 2 of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s priority list (“JCVI-2”).

Data indicates that around 32 per cent of the workforce in the sample already appear to have been vaccinated. Given the numbers of staff involved and the extremely short period for these workers to obtain vaccination, it is to the immense credit of everyone concerned, including local government, central government, the NHS, GPs, primary care networks and employers that this has been achieved.

Link to the full report here.

Notes for Editors

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

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

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


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236496

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Infection control guidance reviewed in light of new variants but PPE advice unchangedInfection control guidance reviewed in light of new variants but PPE advice unchanged

The Department for Health and Social Care have said that:

"A comprehensive review of evidence has been undertaken by the UK Infection Prevention Control Cell in light of the new variants and, in line with NHS advice to staff, there has been no change to guidance on the use of infection prevention control measures.

This means it remains essential existing 'How to Work Safely' guidance on personal protective equipment (PPE) and procedures are followed to minimise the risk of transmission."


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236493

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Advice to Clinically Extremely Vulnerable in Wales extendedAdvice to Clinically Extremely Vulnerable in Wales extended

The advice previously issued to Clinically Extremely Vulnerable people (previously shielding) in Wales has been extended. The guidance was initially issued until 7 February but has now been extended until 31 March 2021.

Written Statement: Advice to those who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable - extension to period advice covers (29 January 2021) | GOV.WALES

Written Statement: Letter to those who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable – previously ‘shielding' (4 February 2021) | GOV.WALES


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236491

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NHSx update - new Dynamic Purchasing System for digital care records under developmentNHSx update - new Dynamic Purchasing System for digital care records under development

NHSx have published an update blog announcing that they are working on a new Dynamic Purchasing System, due to launch in April 2021.

The system is intended to list products that meet certain compliance standards and also provide guidance to help care providers to identify what would work best for them.

Support for digital social care records - NHSX


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236492

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Oxford vaccine analysis promisingOxford vaccine analysis promising

Oxford University have released analysis in Preprints with the Lancet showing that:

A single does of the vaccine offers 76% protection from day 22 to day 90 following vaccination and 82.4% protection following a second dose after 3 months.

Analysis also suggests that the vaccine may have a substantial effect on transmission with a 67% reduction in positive PCR swabs amongst those vaccinated.

Further research is underway.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236490

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Scottish Budget reflects impact of pandemic on spendingScottish Budget reflects impact of pandemic on spending

The Scottish Government has set out its proposed spending and tax plans for 2021 to 2022, in a budget that reflects the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scottish Budget 2021-22

The Scottish Budget provides £883 million for social care, including £34 million for delivery of the living wage, and guarantees £11.6 billion for local government, including £90 million to deliver a national council tax freeze.

See pages 26-28 for social care, and page 36 for local government.

Scottish Budget 2021-22 - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236485

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Return to school for those with additional support needsReturn to school for those with additional support needs

The Scottish Government has announced a phased return to school of certain pupils. Children in early learning and childcare and in primaries 1-3 are due to return 22 February.

Very limited numbers of pupils in S4-6 are allowed to return to complete practical work.

Some children and young people with significant additional support needs will be prioritised for a return to in-person provision, for those most urgently in need of support.

Others, except vulnerable children and those of key workers, will continue with remote learning.

The return to school will be accompanied by an increase in testing: Back to school

Current restrictions, including the 'stay-at-home' requirement, are set to remain in place until at least the end of February:

New measures to tackle virus

 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236486

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£500 Self-Isolation Support Grant extended in Scotland£500 Self-Isolation Support Grant extended in Scotland

The Self-Isolation Support Grant is available to low income workers who lose earnings if they self-isolate, or have to care for a child under 16 who has to self-isolate, is being made available from 16 February to workers earning the Real Living Wage or less, as well as those in receipt of a council tax reduction because of low income.

People with caring responsibilities for someone over 16 who is asked to self-isolate, where the carer themselves meet the other eligibility criteria, can also get the grant.

The Scottish Government is also lengthening the period for applications to within 28 days of being told to self-isolate.

Eligibility will be backdated to 2 February.

Self-Isolation Support National Helpline on 0800 111 4000.

More people supported to self isolate


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236487

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Mass vaccination programme continues in ScotlandMass vaccination programme continues in Scotland

According to the Scottish Government, recent developments in rolling out COVID-19 vaccination include:

  • People aged 70 and over being given vaccines in a range of settings, from Monday 1 February;
  • People aged 70-79 and the clinically extremely vulnerable - including over-16s on the shielding list - will have received their first dose by mid-February, subject to supplies
  • New mass vaccination centres opening in Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) and Aberdeen's P&J LIVE at TECA from 1 February for members of the public with appointments.
  • Letters will start going out shortly in Lothian, Grampian and Greater Glasgow and Clyde to those aged between 65 and 69.
  • Other smaller vaccination centres, located in community facilities are also opening.
  • The programme for first doses for care home residents, frontline health and social care workers and those aged 80 and over will be completed by 5 February.

Update on 29 January: Vaccine programme moves to next stage


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236488

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Mental health support for health and social care staffMental health support for health and social care staff

An additional £500,000 will be made available to Scottish health boards in 2020/21 to provide dedicated mental health support for health and social care staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Health Boards will be able to immediately recruit psychologists and other staff dedicated to supporting the mental health of the health and social care workforce. This funding will be followed by a further £1 million in each of the next two financial years.

Mental health support for health and social care staff

24 Hour Wellbeing Helpline on 0800 111 4191. Wellbeing Hub: https://www.promis.scot/


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236489

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Welsh Government self isolation payment extended to users of NHS appWelsh Government self isolation payment extended to users of NHS app

The Welsh Government have announced that the £500 self isolation support payment, available to those on low incomes (announced in November) , will be extended so that those who were notified of a contact via the NHS App can claim.

The payment is intended to support those who are unable to work due to a self isolation requirement, and currently have a low income (i.e. either in receipt of certain benefits such as Universal Credit or have their application accepted under the discretion of the local authority reviewing their case).

Users of the NHS Covid-19 App now eligible to apply for £500 self-isolation payment | GOV.WALES

Written Statement: Letter to those who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable - previously 'shielding' (4 February 2021) | GOV.WALES


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236484

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New and updated guidance on GOV.UK - "how to stop the spread of coronavirus" and "provision of home care"New and updated guidance on GOV.UK - "how to stop the spread of coronavirus" and "provision of home care"

There is new guidance for the general public that brings together things that can be done to reduce COVID-19 transmission:

How to stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

The provision of homecare guidance (for England) has been updated including amendments to the definition of homecare, and added guidance on vaccinations and capacity tracker.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): providing home care - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

 


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UKHCA News ID: 236481

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Local Government Association survey on resources to support wellbeingLocal Government Association survey on resources to support wellbeing

The LGA is gathering views from across the Adult Social Care workforce in England on the availability, quality and experience of engaging with advice and resources to support wellbeing. Responses will be used to inform the LGA's ongoing work to support wellbeing and positive mental health among the workforce. Anyone working in adult social care is invited to participate, all contributions are greatly appreciated and responses can be submitted anonymously if preferred.

Access the survey


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236482

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Updates from the Scottish Social Services Council - vaccinations and the Flexible Workforce Development FundUpdates from the Scottish Social Services Council - vaccinations and the Flexible Workforce Development Fund

The Scottish Social Services Council have issued information on vaccinations. While encouraging care workers to get the vaccine, and providing further information, the information confirms that where registered workers are not able or decide not to have the vaccine this will not affect their registration status. It reminds care workers of the importance of maintainig other infection control measures, even if vaccinated, such as using the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).

COVID-19 vaccination “it's time to roll up your sleeve" (sssc.uk.com)

They have also published guidance on the use of the Flexible Workforce Development Fund for employers in Scotland. This can be used by organisations with under 250 employees for learning delivered by colleges or The Open University or by employers who pay the UK Government Apprenticeship Levy, for learning delivered by colleges or independent training providers

The flexible workforce development fund: guidance for social service employers in Scotland (sssc.uk.com)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236483

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Increased border controls and travel restrictionsIncreased border controls and travel restrictions

Those wishing to leave the UK will now need to declare a reason for travel. There will be increased police enforcement at ports and airports and those without a valid reason for travel will be directed to return home and may be fined.

Those arriving in the UK from countries with international travel bans will be asked to isolate in hotels. The police will be undertaking increased checks to ensure people are self isolating as required.

Press release

Travel guidance


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236479

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Guidance published on £120m Workforce Development Fund for councils and adult social care providersGuidance published on £120m Workforce Development Fund for councils and adult social care providers

The Department for Health and Social Care have published guidance on the new, ring-fenced £120m Workforce Development Fund, announced on 17 January. This is separate from Infection Control Fund 2 and aims to deliver measures that result in additional staffing capacity for adult social care in England

You can read the guidance here. See also the local authority circular and associated documents.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236480

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Research, news in brief and resources round up for week commencing 1 February 2021Research, news in brief and resources round up for week commencing 1 February 2021

Brief news updates

Alert level 4 is continuing in Wales but a phased and flexible approach to returning children to school could commence following February half term, if the situation continues to improve. Press release.

Care inspectorate Wales have provided an update to confirm they will be continuing with their assurance checks of how well local authority social services are discharging their statutory functions towards people who need care and support and unpaid carers.

Novavax and Janssen have published positive outcomes for their phase 3 trials of their COVID-19 vaccines. The government has also secured more of the Valneva vaccine which is in phase I/II trials.

A circular on charging for social care has confirmed that capital limits, the minimum income guarantee and savings credit disregards will be remaining at their current levels in the 2021/22 financial year.

The Care Provider Alliance have responded to the new Workforce Capacity Fund guidance calling for the fund to be distributed at speed and for the development of a longer term People Plan.

Research and statistics

Care Inspectorate Wales have published their annual statistics on the care services that they regulate.

The Committee for Health in the Northern Ireland Assembly have published a report of the findings of their Inquiry Report on the Impact of COVID-19 in Care Homes. While most of the findings are focused on care homes, some of the recommendations have a wider scope - including the consideration of career pathways for social care and the need to consider the funding of all adult social care. 

The Government have responded to the Health and Social Care Committee's report on "Delivering core NHS and care services during the pandemic and beyond".

The Welsh Government have published a summary of their findings regarding social care market stability reporting.

The latest CQC COVID-19 Insight report includes the latest statistics on COVID prevalence and staff absence rates in homecare.

ONS Blog on ongoing work to estimate the size of the self-funding population.

Chief Medical Officer for Wales's special edition of annual report 2019-2020: protecting our health.

ONS update on Social Impacts of coronavirus.

Resources and events

Vaccination

Overcoming vaccine hesitancy in our diverse communities (GOV.UK blog)

Fact cards and summaries for your vaccination communications from DHSC.

Resources for raising awareness about vaccine fraud. (GOV.UK)

There are also resources for people with learning disabilities including this video and easy read guides to vaccination and the national lockdown.

Workforce recruitment, retention and wellbeing

Recruiting during the COVID-19 pandemic: sharing recruitment solutions - Skills for care webinars.

Delivering under pressure: supporting the wellbeing of frontline staff - a webinar on 11 February 2pm by the Local Government Association

National wellbeing hub webinars for social care workers in Scotland - everything from stress to parenthood to ballet.

Equality and Diversity

Increasing LGBT+ awareness in care & preparing for greater CQC scrutiny - Altura learning with the National Care Forum and Opening Doors, webinar on 24 February at 11.30.

The CQC LGBT+ network are running a series of online events through February. Find out more. 

Skills for Care are running webinars on "How to become an anti-racist organisation" and "Discrinination and care workers rights" Find out more.

Webinar for registered managers 11 February: Having conversations about workplace race equality issues (Skills for Care and ACAS) Register.

Improvement

The Care Inspectorate in Scotland have published videos of their winter support webinars on improvement for Level I and II on their Hub website

Data

The National Data Resource for Wales is hosting a webinar on social care data on 24 February 13.00-15.00.

 

Podcasts

CQC Connect

The Care Exchange (Skills for Care)


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UKHCA News ID: 236478

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Let's do this: the promise of fixing social careLet's do this: the promise of fixing social care

A new report by the Health for Care coalition of 15 national health organisations, led by the NHS Confederation, says for there to be a functioning, effective NHS in England, there needs to be a strong and sustainable social care sector.

Heath leaders argue social care funding must urgently be put on a sustainable footing, to ensure social care is person-centred, accessible and available to all who need it, without pushing them into financial hardship.

Failure to do so jeopardises the NHS Long Term Plan and any meaningful integration. Social care, including domiciliary care, keeps people well and at home, preventing unnecessary hospital admissions and improving wellbeing. If the social care system does not have sufficient capacity, the NHS will experience greater demand for its services.

Let's do this: the promise of fixing social care - NHS Confederation

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brexit-immigration-care-homes-nhs-b1793416.html

https://www.nationalhealthexecutive.com/articles/health-care-government-social-care


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236475

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How to work safely guidance remains fit for purposeHow to work safely guidance remains fit for purpose

 A comprehensive review of evidence by the UK Infection Prevention Control Cell has concluded that the current 'How to Work Safely' guidance remains fit for purpose, in light of new, more infectious COVID-19 variants.

This means, in line with NHS advice to staff, there has been no change to guidance on the use of infection prevention control measures, even after staff and service users have been vaccinated.

So existing guidance on personal protective equipment (PPE) and infection control procedures in England are to be followed to minimise the risk of transmission.

This is supported by The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. New evidence is being kept under review. 


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236476

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Research round up 29 January 2021Research round up 29 January 2021

The Health for Care Coalition has launched a new report "Let's do this: the promise of fixing social care". The report highlights seven key principles including ensuring social care is sustainable and that the workforce are valued.

The Government has responded to the Health and Social Care Committee's report on Adult Social Care Funidng and Workforce. You can read the response here.

The Government has also responded to the Women and Equalities Committee's report "Unequal impact? Coronavirus, disability and access to services" including discussion of the Care Act easements. You can read the response here.

 


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UKHCA News ID: 236473

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Updated COVID-19 testing strategy for WalesUpdated COVID-19 testing strategy for Wales

The Welsh Government have published an updated testing strategy that outlines how testing can be used to diagnose COVID in hospitals, safeguard vulnerable people in health and care settings, find COVID for people who have symptoms and enhance community surveillance to manage outbreaks, maintain work and school activities through testing and enable international travel, sports and other activities through testing.

Press release.

You can find the strategy here.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236474

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£500 one-off recognition payment for health and social care workers in Northern Ireland being considered£500 one-off recognition payment for health and social care workers in Northern Ireland being considered

Yesterday Robin Swann announced that he was working on proposals for a £500 one-off recognition payment for health and social care workers in Northern Ireland. He indicated that this would include domiciliary care workers. However, the details of the scheme have yet to be signed off.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236472

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Joint statement on the use of COVID-19 positive staff in care settingsJoint statement on the use of COVID-19 positive staff in care settings

The Department of Health and Social Care, Public Health England, Care Quality Commission and the Assoication of Directors of Public Health have issued a joint statement to emphasise that under no circumstances should staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 be working.

Joint statement on the use of COVID-19 positive staff in care settings | Care Quality Commission (cqc.org.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236494

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CQC is consulting on changes for more flexible and responsive regulationCQC is consulting on changes for more flexible and responsive regulation

The Care Quality Commission are consulting on making changes so they can assess and rate services in England more flexibly, and update ratings more often in a more responsive and proportionate way. CQC say this will make ratings easier to understand.

CQC want to move away from comprehensive, on-site inspection as the main way of updating ratings and use wider sources of evidence to assess quality. On-site inspection will still be used where the regulator has information about significant risks to people's safety.

Consultation on changes for more flexible and responsive regulation

Please respond by 5pm on Tuesday 23 March 2021. The quickest and easiest way to respond is through the consultation survey.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236471

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Community Champions to give vaccine advice and boost take upCommunity Champions to give vaccine advice and boost take up

A system of Community Champions is being set up to provide advice on COVID-19 vaccination to boost take up in groups such as older people, disabled people, and people from ethnic minority backgrounds who are most at risk.

Over £23 million funding has been allocated to 60 councils and voluntary groups in England to deliver the scheme, which aims to build trust in communities where there is vaccine scepticism.

Councils will develop their own plans to improve communication with these groups, while Community Champions will tap into local networks to provide advice, identify barriers and provide tailored support.

Community Champions to give COVID-19 vaccine advice and boost take up


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UKHCA News ID: 236467

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Changes to Kickstart scheme from 3 February 2021Changes to Kickstart scheme from 3 February 2021

Changes have been made to the Kickstart Scheme in Great Britain which provides funding to employers to create job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit. From 3 February 2021, employers can apply directly to the Kickstart scheme for any number of job placements. The threshold of 30 job placements is removed.. Employers can also choose to apply through a Kickstart gateway.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236468

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Covid-19 vaccine survey for careworkersCovid-19 vaccine survey for careworkers

Researchers want to hear from careworkers about their views and experience with the COVID-19 vaccine.

The findings of this study will be shared with Public Health England to help inform policy decisions regarding COVID-19 vaccination amongst health and social care staff.

The survey is from NIHR Health Protection Research Unit in Immunisation, a research partnership between the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Public Health England. It is produced in conjunction with the NHS Race and Health Observatory and the Royal College of Nursing.

Survey link here


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UKHCA News ID: 236466

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Working with people in their own homes/supported living this winterWorking with people in their own homes/supported living this winter

Two new pages on GOV.UK have been published which draw together high level information and links relating to PPE, Testing, Vaccination and Wellbeing for care workers in England.

Working with people in their own homes this winter - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Working with people in supported living this winter - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


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UKHCA News ID: 236465

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Northern Ireland's lockdown extended to 5 March 2021Northern Ireland's lockdown extended to 5 March 2021

Northern Ireland's stay at home restrictions have been extended until 5 March 2021, with a review on 18 February 2021. A sharp increase in COVID-19 cases has put pressure on hospitals.

Health protection coronavirus restrictions regulations

Coronavirus (COVID-19): a guide to the restrictions - January 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19) regulations guidance: what the restrictions mean for you


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236463

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Quality and improvement training opportunities in ScotlandQuality and improvement training opportunities in Scotland

The Scottish Social Services Council are working with NHS Education for Scotland and are inviting applications for:


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UKHCA News ID: 236462

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Adult Social Care Rapid Testing Fund GuidanceAdult Social Care Rapid Testing Fund Guidance

The Department of Health and Social Care have released guidance on how local authorities in England should use the Rapid Testing Fund.

While 80% of the Fund is exclusively for the deployment of lateral flow tests in care homes, there is a degree of discretion for the remaining 20%. This might include suporting extra care and supported living settings who are eligible for lateral flow testing.

Find out more.


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UKHCA News ID: 236460

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Scotland: shielding care workers support schemeScotland: shielding care workers support scheme

The Scottish Government have established a payment scheme for shielding care workers who were not placed onto the Job Retention Scheme (furlough).

This provides a lump sum back payment for workers not able to work between March and October 2020 (following October 2020 eligible workers should have access to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme).

Applications are open until 24 February 2021.

Further information.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236461

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Letter from Adult Social Care Chief NurseLetter from Adult Social Care Chief Nurse

The new Social Care Chief Nurse, Deborah Sturdy, has written to the adult social care workforce. Her role is to support the social care nursing profession, as well as the wider social care workforce. The letter covers a number of key issues which faces adult social care at the moment, including the importance of testing, PPE, and self-isolation (where required to do so).

The letter can be downloaded on this link.


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UKHCA News ID: 236457

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Northern Ireland vaccination programme FAQsNorthern Ireland vaccination programme FAQs

The Public Health Agency have published answers to frequently asked questions relating to Northern Ireland's COVID-19 Vaccination Programme.

You can access the FAQs here.


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UKHCA News ID: 236458

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Supported living guidance update on isolation periodSupported living guidance update on isolation period

The Supported Living Guidance in England has been updated to say that those who have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19 must isolate for 14 days not 10 days if, based on a risk assessment, the setting is considered high risk.

Supported living services during coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


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UKHCA News ID: 236459

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Support Fund for unpaid carers expanded in WalesSupport Fund for unpaid carers expanded in Wales

The Carers Support Fund for those that provide unpaid care and support to family and friends has been increased by £250m. This can be used to provide unpaid carers iwth grants of up to £300 for essentials.

Carers Support Fund increased by a quarter of a million pounds | GOV.WALES


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UKHCA News ID: 236455

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WeCare Wales rapid recruitment pilotWeCare Wales rapid recruitment pilot

WeCare Wales are running a rapid recruitment pilot which includes four days online training for new recruits, which is intended to cover the essentials needed to start working in social care.

Potential recruits can register their interest on the WeCare Wales jobs portal. It may also be possible for care agencies to secure places for new recruits if they are having difficulty providing training due to coronavirus.

See this leaflet for further information.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236456

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PM confirms commitment to social care reformPM confirms commitment to social care reform

The Prime Minister confirmed the Government's commitment to bring forward plans later this year to reform and improve social care in England, when he gave evidence to the House of Commons Liaison Committee recently. He also agreed that social care should have a long-term plan.

Transcript of PM's evidence, 13 January 2021, unrevised (parliament.uk) (Questions 5 and 6)


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UKHCA News ID: 236470

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New app to support people with Long COVIDNew app to support people with Long COVID

NHS Wales have developed an app to support people to recover from Long COVID. The app includes links to advice, videos and the ability to track symptoms. 

Written statement.

Press release.

Google Play

Apple app store


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236452

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Research and resources round up week commencing 20 January 2021Research and resources round up week commencing 20 January 2021

Evaluation of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 - this research draws on the feedback from the workforce and organisations to evaluate the Social Services and Well-being Act. Both positive examples of change and challenges were identified. A further study will be undertaken to seek feedback from service users, carers, families and communities.

The Open University have published a report focusing on social care and social work staffing. Key findings include that whilst 76% of leaders and managers thought their service was sufficiently staffed, 44% said they only had the bare minimum skills required to operate and 54% were worried that Brexit would impact recruitment of skilled staff. The report calls for sustainable funding of the sector; promoting social care to a new audience; creating structured career development and targeting skill gaps.

The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition has published a position statement on nutrition in older adults living in the community.

The NHS Confederation and NHS Providers hosted Community Network representation to the Spring Budget 2021, which includes calls for increased funding for domicilliary care.

WHO introduction to the UN Decade of Health Ageing 2021-2030.

The CPA have updated their briefing on the End of the Transition Period: Keeping data safe

Free stress control classes are being offered in Northern Ireland. Press release. Access the classes.

The Care Provider Alliance has said that there is an urgent need for a social care people plan.

The Scottish Social Services Council have published their Annual Report 2019-2020.

Healthwatch FAQs COVID-19 Vaccination

Social care blog: Lockdowns unlock innovation

UNICEF Vaccine misinformation field guide

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Loneliness Annual Report January 2021


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UKHCA News ID: 236453

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Scotland to stay in lockdown until at least mid-FebruaryScotland to stay in lockdown until at least mid-February

Current lockdown measures will stay in place across mainland Scotland and some island communities until at least the middle of February, the First Minister has confirmed.

Barra and Vatersay will move into lockdown from 00:01 on Wednesday. The rest of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar will remain in level 3.

Schools across Scotland will continue to use remote learning until at least the mid-February except vulnerable children and those of key workers who can attend school.

Nobody who lives in an area under lockdown should leave or remain outside their home except for an essential purpose like caring responsibilities, outdoor exercise and work that cannot be done from home.

These measures will be reviewed by the Cabinet on February 2.

Review of restrictions


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UKHCA News ID: 236450

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Regular testing of care at home workers in Scotland - guidance and webinarsRegular testing of care at home workers in Scotland - guidance and webinars

New guidance and materials have been issued to support testing of staff working in community based care services in Scotland, which commenced from 18 January. Distribution of kits is currently underway. The guidance states the arrangements for care at home services is as follows:

Test method

LFD or PCR - Because of the diverse nature of care at home services some services will use LFD tests while others will use PCR. LFD - twice weekly test with follow up PCR test if LFD is positive. PCR - once weekly.

Delivery

Lateral flow (LFD) testing kits will be provided via the Health and Social Care Partnership or direct to the individual provider. Arrangements will differ depending on the mechanisms each Health and Social Care Partnership has put in place to roll out testing.

Training and webinars

Information on training and webinars on care at home worker testing is at: Coronavirus (COVID-19): adult care at home testing guidance

UKHCA understands PCR testing will be used for adult care at home staff who provide personal care services/close support (supported living) and who are typically highly mobile and travel extensively, who work with multiple clients and have no fixed base/hub, with lateral flow tests used for less mobile, smaller client group services like sheltered housing or supported accommodation.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236451

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Additional funding for staffing in social careAdditional funding for staffing in social care

The Department for Health and Social Care has announced that they will be providing an additional £120 million in funding for local authorities in England in order to boost staffing levels in the social care sector.

The press release (available here) makes clear that this funding can be used by local authorities for costs associated with:

  • Providing additional care staff where shortages arise;
  • Supporting administrative tasks so experienced and skilled staff can focus on providing care; and
  • Helping existing staff to take on additional hours if they wish with overtime payments or by covering childcare costs.

We are seeking further clarification about whether and how this funding may be accessible to care providers.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236448

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Travel corridors suspended and pre-departure testing from todayTravel corridors suspended and pre-departure testing from today

From today (Monday 18 January), passengers travelling to the UK will have to demonstrate a negative COVID-19 test before departure.

All travel corridors into England have been suspended, meaning that all travellers from outside the Common Travel Area will be required to self isolate for 10 days on arrival.

The number of jobs that qualify for exceptions for the 10 day isolation period have also been reduced.

Travel from a number of countries is also banned.

These changes have been introduced due to concerns about new strains of coronavirus emerging.

Press release

Similar provisions have been introduced in Wales:

Coronavirus (COVID-19): testing for people travelling to Wales | GOV.WALES

Travel corridors to be suspended as new virus strains emerge | GOV.WALES

In Scotland:

Closure of travel corridors

Pre departure testing

In Northern Ireland:

Coronavirus (COVID-19): international travel advice | nidirect


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236446

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Vaccination invites for over 70s and clinically extremely vulnerableVaccination invites for over 70s and clinically extremely vulnerable

Invites to vaccinations for those over 70 and those who are clinically extremely vulnerable will begin today in England. While the over 80s, health and social care staff and care home residents and staff will remain the top priority, vaccination centres with the supply and capacity to offer vaccinations to the next two groups will be able to start issuing invitations.

Press release

You can find leaflets and information on the COVID-19 vaccination programme here. COVID-19 vaccination programme - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236447

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"Good news stories and innovation from the #homecare sector" blog"Good news stories and innovation from the #homecare sector" blog

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

Featuring UKHCA members:

Welcombe Care
Right at Home Chichester & Bognor Regis
Helping Hands Homecare Brentwood
Carewatch UK Isle of Wight
Ashridge Home Care Ltd
The Good Care Group Ltd
Bluebird Care Exeter, Exmouth, East and West Devon
Home Instead Senior Care UK Liverpool
Caremark (Kirklees)
Kare Plus Croydon
SureCare UK Central Cheshire

Link here


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236442

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Training materials for social care staff on sexuality and intimate relationshipsTraining materials for social care staff on sexuality and intimate relationships

Supported Loving are working with Skills for Care, the CQC and DHSC to review existing learning material for social care staff around supporting sexuality and intimate relationships.

If you have materials you'd like to share you can access a short survey here.

They are also running webinars.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236443

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Update to CQC notification formsUpdate to CQC notification forms

The CQC have updated their "Death of a Person Using the Service" notification form and are planning update to other forms. Please ensure you use the updated forms from the CQC website should you need to make a notification.

Notifications | Care Quality Commission (cqc.org.uk)


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UKHCA News ID: 236444

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Vaccination of front-line care workers in EnglandVaccination of front-line care workers in England

The official plan describing the system for arranging coronavirus vaccinations for social care workers in England has now been published. Providers should familiarise themselves with the Standard Operating Procedure. However, local councils and the NHS are working at speed to estabilsh vaccination arrangements in local areas and there may be some regional variation in the timing and details of delivery approaches.

Coronavirus: Vaccinating frontline social care workers (england.nhs.uk)


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UKHCA News ID: 236445

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Coronavirus risk assessments for workplaces under new Welsh legislationCoronavirus risk assessments for workplaces under new Welsh legislation

The First Minister has announced that new legislation will be implemented that will require workplaces and shops to undertake specific coronavirus risk assessments in order to improve safety.

Press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236441

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Pharmacies in Wales now piloting vaccine deliveryPharmacies in Wales now piloting vaccine delivery

The Welsh Government is now piloting the delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations from community pharmacies.

Find out more


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236439

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Wales confirms pre-departure testing from MondayWales confirms pre-departure testing from Monday

Following an announcement earlier in the week that international arrivals to England would require a pre-departure test, Wales have confirmed that international arrivals to Wales from outside the Common Travel Area will also require a negative pre-departure test from 4am on Monday 18 January.

Press release


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236440

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Vaccine deployment plan issued for ScotlandVaccine deployment plan issued for Scotland

NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government have published their COVID-19 vaccine deployment plan to set out how they will vaccinate everyone over the age of 18 and those aged 16 and 17 who are frontline health and social care workers, young carers or have underlying health conditions in Scotland.

Cate at home workers fall within priority 2, as determined by JCVI. The FAQs attached to the plan say those in JCVI priority groups 1 and 2 you will be contacted by their local NHS Board, employer, or local GP to be advised about their appointment, with a range of settings available for vaccination.

COVID-19+vaccine+deployment+plan+14+January+2021.pdf


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UKHCA News ID: 236438

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Pre-departure testing - now from Monday and further guidance and travel restrictionsPre-departure testing - now from Monday and further guidance and travel restrictions

The requirement for travellers to England to have a negative test result 72 hours prior to travelling, which was due to come into force on Friday 15 January will now come into force on Monday 18 January.

The test undertaken could be a PCR or lateral flow antigen test but must meet certain specified standards in terms of sensitivity, specificity and viral load.

The guidance, including a limited list of exemptions (for example, for travellers within the Common Travel Area) is available here:

Coronavirus (COVID-19): testing for people travelling to England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Press release

The list of countries subject to stricter isolation requirements on return to the UK has now expanded beyond South Africa in order to contain the risk of a new variant spreading in the UK. Find out more.

Travel from South American destinations, Portugal, Panama and Cape Verde is also facing new restrictions due to concerns about a new COVID-19 variant. Press release.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236437

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White Paper on reform of the Mental Health ActWhite Paper on reform of the Mental Health Act

The Government have issued a White Paper on Reform of the Mental Health Act 1983. The reforms include a focus on:

  • Giving patients a voice - including the use of advance choice documents
  • Tackling disparities, including the use of the law in relation to BAME communities
  • How mental health treatment links to the Criminal Justice system
  • How people with learning disabilities and autism are treated under the law

Secretary of State's announcement

Find out more via our consultations page.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236436

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Scottish Government tightens restrictions from 16 JanuaryScottish Government tightens restrictions from 16 January

The Scottish Government is to tighten COVID-19 restrictions on takeaways and click and collect services from Saturday, 16 January.

Takeaways will have to operate from a hatch or doorway, rather than allow customers inside, and click and collect will only be allowed from shops selling essential items, and then only outdoors, with staggered appointments so people do not have to queue.

It will also be against the law in all level 4 areas of Scotland to drink alcohol outdoors in public.

Statutory guidance on working from home will make clear that if people were working from home during the first lockdown, they should be working from home now and their employer should be facilitating that.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: First Minister's statement 13 January 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19): stay at home guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on working from home


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236434

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Scotland to introduce pre-departure coronavirus testingScotland to introduce pre-departure coronavirus testing

From 0400 on Friday 15 January 2021, passengers travelling to Scotland from outside the Common Travel Area must have a valid negative COVID-19 test result, taken no more than three days before the scheduled time of departure. This will be checked by operators, and passengers with a positive test result or an invalid certificate will be refused boarding. 

Passengers arriving from countries not on the quarantine exemption list will still have to self-isolate for ten days, even with a negative test.

Spot checks will be carried out, and fixed penalty notices may be issued to those who don't comply.

Non-essential travel to or from Scotland and will not immediately change.

Pre-departure coronavirus testing update


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UKHCA News ID: 236433

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Research and resources week commencing 11 January 2021Research and resources week commencing 11 January 2021

The University of Bristol, working with international experts, have published a guide outlining how to communicate effectively about the COVID-19 vaccine. You can access the guide here or read the press release here.

A study by Public Health England's SIREN has shown that past COVID-19 infection provides some immunity for several months following the first infection. However, those with immunity may still be able to carry or transmit the infection.

ADASS have called for an immediate cash injection and new recruits for social care as absence from work increases due to the pandemic.

DWP have prodeced a video explaining the Tell Us Once service which makes the process of bereaved persons reporting the death of a loved one to government departments more straightforward (this applies in England, Scotland and Wales).

House of Commons Library: COVID-19 vaccine roll-out: frequently asked questions

Skills for Care are running an online eveny on 28 January about practical collaboration during COVID-19: working together to support adults with learning disabilities. Find out more

The House of Lords Science and Technology Committee have published a report sugggesting that government action could improve health in old age.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236431

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Vaccination Strategy for WalesVaccination Strategy for Wales

The Welsh Government and Public Health Wales have published a high-level Vaccination Strategy for Wales. This outlines the vaccination priorities, infrastructure and communication strategy in Wales as well as broad timescales (including the aim to vaccinate those in the top four priority groups - which include care workers - by mid-February).

Written statement


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236432

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Applications for free Vitamin D extended to 21 February 2021Applications for free Vitamin D extended to 21 February 2021

The deadline for clinically extremely vulnerable people to sign up for a free supply of vitamin D supplements in England has been extended to 21 February 2021.

Guidance on the initiative: Vitamin D supplements: how to take them safely

Letter to clinically extremely vulnerable people: Clinically_Extremely_Vulnerable_Letter_Jan_National_Lockdown_Final.pdf

Register at nhs.uk/get-vitamin-d


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236430

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International travel update on pre-departure testingInternational travel update on pre-departure testing

There has been an international travel update, following the Government's announcement last week on pre-departure testing.

From 4am on 15 January 2021, pre-departure testing will be required for all inbound passengers to England.

Passengers arriving by ship, plane or train will have to take a test up to 3 days before departure and provide evidence of a negative result before they travel.

This is in addition to self-isolation requirements, and subject to a short list of exemptions.

Guidance will set out the tests that meet the standards, and information passengers will need to have with them when travelling.

All information on test requirements will be made available to passengers and transport operators through guidance on www.gov.uk. More details in the update.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236429

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PPE portal updatesPPE portal updates

Providers in England undertaking Aerosol Generating Procedures should now be able to order the correct equipment from the PPE Portal.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236428

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UK vaccines delivery plan publishedUK vaccines delivery plan published

The Government has published its UK COVID-19 vaccines delivery plan for vaccinating tens of millions of people by spring at over 2,700 vaccination sites across the UK.

The UK COVID-19 vaccines delivery plan sets out how the government will work with the NHS, devolved administrations, local councils and the armed forces to deliver the largest vaccination programme in British history. The plans sets out priority groups, targets for vaccination and how the roll out will be achieved. They are accompanied by a vaccine surveillance strategy to monitor the effectiveness of the programme in England.

The plan provides that, by the end of January, everyone in England will be within 10 miles of a vaccination site or, for a small number of highly rural areas, the vaccine will be brought to them via mobile teams. 

Government press release

COVID-19 vaccine surveillance strategy


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236426

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Free carbon monoxide awareness Zoom workshopsFree carbon monoxide awareness Zoom workshops

The Gas Safe Charity is offering free, on line carbon monoxide awareness Zoom workshops, aimed at front line staff who visit or work in the homes of vulnerable people. The workshop lasts about an hour and explains the sources, signs and symptoms of high and low level carbon monoxide risks in the home and includes relevant scenarios to explain what steps to take if carbon monoxide poisoning is suspected. To find out more and book a workshop, please click on the link.

Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236427

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MOTs must be booked as normal during lockdownMOTs must be booked as normal during lockdown

The Government's MOT centre and tester guidance makes clear MOT centres can stay open in all areas of Great Britain, including during the national lockdown in England, the temporary lockdown in Scotland, and all of Wales in alert level 4 (lockdown).

Vehicle owners were given a 6-month extension to their MOT if it was due between 30 March 2020 and 31 July 2020. However, people must book an MOT as normal if their MOT is due from 1 August 2020. There is no new extension in the current lockdown.

Check the guidance for vehicle owners.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236425

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Northern Ireland vaccination programme opens to home care workersNorthern Ireland vaccination programme opens to home care workers

The Department of Health have announced today that domiciliary care workers in Northern Ireland and those employed by independent care agencies will be able to book COVID vaccinations at Trust vaccination centres from today. This will be part of the staff vaccination programme running in parallel with the programme for the general public that is commencing in GP practices.

The statement is available here.

Further information on the Northern Ireland COVID-19 Vaccination Programme.

Care worker information leaflet


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236421

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Community testing expanded to test those who cannot work from homeCommunity testing expanded to test those who cannot work from home

Community flow testing is being expanded in local authorities in England to test people without symptoms, targeted on people who cannot work from home during lockdown.

NHS Test and Trace is to work with each local authority on an expanded community testing plan. 131 local authorities have signed up to the scheme, with 107 already having started.

NHS Test and Trace is also working closely with other government departments to scale up workforce testing, with pilots taking place with larger employers.

Community testing employs the faster lateral flow testing, rather than the more accurate swab testing used in the testing of the homecare workforce.

More information: Asymptomatic testing to be rolled out across the country starting this week

Statement from Chief Medical Adviser for NHS Test and Trace, Susan Hopkins on community testing


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236420

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Close contact is now cumulative for NHS Test and Trace purposesClose contact is now cumulative for NHS Test and Trace purposes

The definition of 'close contact', for the purposes of what happens if a person tests positive for coronavirus or has had close contact with someone who has tested positive, has changed to having been within 2 metres of someone for more than 15 minutes (either as a one-off contact, or added up together over one day) ie cumulative contact.

NHS Test and Trace: how it works This relates to the tracing system in England.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236419

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Critical worker guidance amended regarding school attendanceCritical worker guidance amended regarding school attendance

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on 4 January 2021, only children of critical workers and vulnerable children and young people in England should attend school or college. All other pupils and students are to receive remote education. Updated guidance provides that parents whose work is critical to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and EU transition response include those who work in health and social care and in other key sectors outlined in the guidance. Children with at least one parent or carer who is a critical worker can go to school or college if required, but parents and carers should keep their children at home if they can.

Critical workers and vulnerable children who can access schools or educational settings


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UKHCA News ID: 236417

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Free PPE extended until June 2021Free PPE extended until June 2021

In an email announcement this afternoon the Department of Health and Social Care have indicated that "the Government has extended the provision of free personal protective equipment (PPE) for COVID-19 needs to social care providers until the end of June 2021".

CQC registered providers are able to access PPE via the PPE Portal.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236415

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Good news stories and innovation from the homecare sectorGood news stories and innovation from the homecare sector

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

All Seasons Community Support CIC
First City Nursing & Care
Bluebird Care Canterbury & Thanet
Radfield Home Care (UK) Wakefield & Dewsbury
Right at Home UK Ilkley, Keighley & Skipton
Helping Hands Homecare (Chipping Sodbury and Yate, South Gloucestershire)
Home Instead Senior Care UK Hampshire
Caremark Ltd Cheltenham and Tewkesbury
Care By Us Ltd
Consultus Care & Nursing Ltd

Link to the article here


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UKHCA News ID: 236416

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Moderna vaccine approved for use in the UKModerna vaccine approved for use in the UK

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Extension of alert level 4 measures in Wales confirmedExtension of alert level 4 measures in Wales confirmed

The First Minister has confirmed that the alert level 4 restrictions in Wales will remain in place and will be strengthened (for example, showrooms will no longer be able to open).

The measures are due to be reviewed again in three weeks.

Unless there is a significant reduction in cases before 29 January, school and college students will continue to learn online until February half term.

Press release.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236413

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International arrivals to be required to produce a negative test resultInternational arrivals to be required to produce a negative test result

The Transport Secretary has announced international arrivals will be required to produce a negative COVID-19 test result before departure for England.

Under the new rules inbound passengers arriving by boat, plane or train will have to take a test up to than 72 hours before departing the country they are in, and present proof of a negative COVID-19 test result to carriers, as well as their passenger locator form. The UK Border Force will conduct spot checks on arrival into England to ensure that passengers are fully compliant.

Permitted travellers will need to take their test up to 72 hours before departure, and this will apply irrespective of whether a country is on the travel corridor list. 

Those arriving from a country not on the travel corridors list will still have to self-isolate for 10 days, regardless of test result, although this can be shortened using the test to release scheme.

Government press release. The new rules are expected to come in in England next week, and in Scotland, 'as soon as possible'. Wales and Northern Ireland are looking at similar measures.

Further guidance is expected, including details of exemptions.


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Updates to guidance on GOV.UK week commencing 4 January 2021Updates to guidance on GOV.UK week commencing 4 January 2021

The provision of home care guidance has been updated to reflect the new shielding guidance for those who are clinically extremely vulnerable.

The summary poster on testing for homecare workers is now available in a number of languages.

The Adult Social Care Infection Control Fund round 2: guidance has been updated to clarify that providers can use the Fund to pay wages for staff to attend work or other locations for vaccinations or COVID-19 tests.

The Guidance on Shielding has been updated in light of the national lockdown and a letter has been published that has been sent to those who are clinically extremely vulnerable.

HM Treasury have published a summary of existing economic support during the COVID pandemic.

The guidance on Supported Living has been updated

The guidance Getting help with daily activities outside your home during coronavirus has been updated to reflect the lockdown.


Announcement posted on:

UKHCA News ID: 236409