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The Carer Digital
Care Homes 'Thrown to The Wolves' During Covid-19 Outbreak Says Commons Report
Meg Hillier MP, Public Accounts Committee chair
A highly critical report into the government’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak has revealed that care homes were “effectively thrown to the wolves”. MPs sitting on the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) accused the government of being ‘slow, inconsistent, and at times negligent’ towards social care and being too slow to support social care during the Covid-19 pandemic. The decision to allow hospital patients to be discharged to care homes without a coronavirus test has been labelled an “appalling error” by MPs. The committee also said that years of ‘inattention,
funding cuts and delayed reforms’ had been compounded by the government’s response to coronavirus and had left the social care sector as a ‘poor relation’ to the NHS. The cross-party committee said that around 25,000 patients were discharged into care homes in England between mid-March and mid-April to free up hospital beds. A negative test for Covid-19 was initially not required prior discharging patients before the government finally said on 15 April that all patients moving to care homes would be tested.
Committee chair Meg Hillier, speaking to the BBC, admitted that data about the virus had been initially limited, but criticised the health department for a long-standing lack of understanding. She said: “The fact that there are people on low pay not taking sick leave, moving from home to home were things that were risk elements if you had better understanding of any impact of any disease on a care home you would have understood the implications.”
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EDITOR'S VIEWPOINT Welcome to the latest edition of The Carer Digital! “There are only four kinds of people in the world. Those who have been caregivers. Those who are currently caregivers. Those who will be caregivers, and those who will need a caregiver.” ROSALYN CARTER Our front-page story is “hot off the press”. A damning report which accuses the government of effectively “throwing care homes the wolves” during the Covid-19 pandemic. The report is clearly highlighting years of neglect highlighting a sector which has been taken for granted and, I have to agree, a sector “thrown to the wolves” as the pandemic unfolded. Releasing patients back into the care sector without testing was a monumental error of judgement, and the whole country really does need to see some accountaEditor bility. I have been saying in recent weeks that I hope there is not a “pass the parcel of blame” from one department to another. If that is the case, no lesson will be learned whatsoever, and will run the risk of a repeat should there be a second surge. We are only at the very beginning of what is going to be a highly contentious lead up to an inquiry - one that I very much hope is not just left to politicians to score political points. Any future inquiry must have input from those from the frontline: care organisations amd care groups in care homes. They were the coalface, (still are!), and who better to describe the challenges they faced and the failures that were dealt with than them! There are already warning signs of further financial implications due to the pandemic putting even more pressure in care homes. An article in this issue reveals that according to research from the Local Government Association the pandemic has brought £0.5 billion shortfall to care homes and with the spectre of a second wave hanging over the whole of Europe preparations and support for the care sector should be the government’s highest priority. We will, of course, bring you of all developments in the lead up to a public inquiry, both digitally and in print. As you are well aware, last week the Prime Minister said that, while now is not the time, there will be a future inquiry. We would be delighted to put your views forward, so please if you have anything to say get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org I would also draw your attention to our UNSUNG HERO award on page 9. As you
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TYPESETTING & DESIGN Matthew Noades PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Shelly Roche will see, we here at THE CARER were overwhelmed the number of nominations and humbled once again at the hard work and dedication of staff within the sector. We added a few more “runner ups” - as we say in the article, it is just a small gesture on our part to acknowledge the wonderful work undertaken by those in the care sector. How we wish we could reward you all! While we cannot, unfortunately, we want to do as much as we can to ensure that the government does! Again, I would like to thank you for all the wonderful stories you are sending us, some great initiatives, keeping the spirits high, which is why we felt Helen deserved our Unsung Hero award. The virtual trips were wonderful idea - if we cannot take you out on a trip, we will bring the trip to you! Once again well-done Helen!
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 3
Care Homes 'Thrown to The Wolves' During Covid-19 Outbreak Says Commons Report (CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER...) Between 9 March and 17 May, an estimated 5,900 care homes in England (38%), reported at least one outbreak of Covid-19, and the latest official figures revealed that there were 15,216 deaths involving Covid-19 in care homes in England and Wales up to 17 July, accounting for 29.7% of all coronavirus fatalities. Failure to protect staff had hit morale and confidence, while a lack of timely testing led to increased stress and absence among workers, the committee said. ‘Reflecting on the government’s response to the pandemic so far, we are also particularly concerned by its failure to provide adequate PPE for the social care sector and testing to the millions of staff and volunteers who risked their lives to help us through the first peak of the crisis,’ the document said. The MPs said the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) ‘leads a fragmented system’ of adult social care, with responsibilities spread between itself, local government and care providers. The report, “Readying the NHS and social care for the Covid-19 peak”, urged the government to reflect and admit its mistakes. Ms Hillier, added: “The failure to provide adequate PPE or testing to the millions of staff and volunteers who risked their lives to help us through the first peak of the crisis is a sad, low moment in our national response. “Our care homes were effectively thrown to the wolves, and the virus
has ravaged some of them. The deaths of people in care homes devastated many, many families. They and we don’t have time for promises and slogans, or exercises in blame.” “We weren’t prepared for the first wave. Putting all else aside, government must use the narrow window we have now to plan for a second wave. Lives depend upon getting our response right.” The committee has called for the release of information from Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) on which care homes received discharged patients and how many subsequently had outbreaks; what it expects to do to support care sector in terms of structure, legislatively and financially to ensure the needs of social care have as much importance as those of the NHS. In particular to assess the capacity it needs, especially for PPE and testing, and how it will meet this, to cope with a second surge, and plan how it will examine and provide support to staff through to the end of the pandemic. A DHSC spokesperson said: ‘Throughout this unprecedented global pandemic we have been working closely with the sector and public health experts to put in place guidance and support for adult social care. ‘Alongside an extra £1.3bn to support the hospital discharge process, we have provided 172 million items of PPE to the social care sector since the start of the pandemic and are testing all residents and staff, including repeat testing for staff and residents in care homes for over 65 or those with dementia. ‘We know there is a need for a long-term solution for social care and
we will bring forward a plan that puts social care on a sustainable footing to ensure the reforms will last long into the future.’ Shadow social care minister Liz Kendall said the report showed the government “was too slow to act to protect older and disabled people”. The Labour MP told the BBC: “A series of mistakes were made despite clear warnings from what was happening in other countries.” Cllr Paulette Hamilton, Vice Chair of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: “Social care has been on the frontline throughout this crisis but this report’s conclusions show that those who use, work and volunteer in these vital services were not given as much priority as the NHS from the outset. “Inadequate funding and delayed reforms, compounded by a lack of PPE, testing and changing guidance, all contributed towards a tragic loss of life in our care homes and other places where people receive care. “We cannot and must not allow any of these mistakes to be repeated again, if the country is to experience a second wave of coronavirus. Social care deserves parity of esteem with the NHS. “This needs to be backed up by a genuine, long-term and sustainable funding settlement for adult social care, which we have been calling for long before the current crisis. “We urge the Government to act on the committee’s powerful recommendations as soon as possible, alongside the beginning of promised cross-party talks on the future of adult social care.”
Care Home Residents & Families Can Now Be Reunited
Care home residents are set to be reunited with friends and family as visits begin again following the publication of new guidance. The isolating effects of lockdown have been difficult for residents and families, but the rate of community transmission has fallen and care homes can now arrange visits based on new guidance to limit further outbreaks, and protect staff and residents. These arrangements will be based on the advice set out in new guidance to limit any further outbreaks and protect staff and residents. Local directors of public health will lead assessments on visiting within their local authority. They will be expected to take a measured, risk-assessed approach, considering the situation in specific care homes as well as the community context, including any local outbreaks. Matt Hancock, Health and Social Care Secretary, said: "I know how painful it has been for those in care homes not being able to receive visits from their loved ones throughout this period. "We are now able to carefully and safely allow visits to care homes, which will be based on local knowledge and circumstances for each care home. "It is really important that we don’t undo all of the hard work of care homes over the last few months while ensuring families and friends can be safely reunited so we have put in place guidance that protects everyone. "Care home providers should encourage all visitors to wear a face covering and to wash their hands thoroughly before and after putting it
on and taking it off. "Visitors should wear appropriate further PPE depending on the need of their visit, including gloves and aprons. Providers should also consider whether visits could take place in a communal garden or outdoor area, which can be accessed without anyone going through a shared building. "To limit risk where visits do go ahead, this should be limited to a single constant visitor, per resident, wherever possible. This is to limit the overall number of visitors to the care home and the consequent risk of infection." Minister for Care Helen Whately said:"The social care workforce has gone above and beyond during the pandemic and I am hugely grateful to everyone working in care homes for all they have done to protect residents and staff and help save lives during these challenging times. "We know how important it is for families and friends to be able to visit their loved ones. This guidance sets out how families and residents can safely come together again. "The latest guidance maximises the input of local professionals, who will have the greatest awareness of community transmission in their area while taking into account the needs of individual residents." It is expected all care homes will still only relax visiting arrangements for specific individual needs and continue to take the health protection of the whole care home as their main objective, but those wishing to visit should speak to the care homes before a planned visit. Care homes should support NHS Test and Trace by keeping a tem-
porary record, including address and phone number, of current and previous residents, staff and visitors as well as keeping track of visitor numbers and staff. It is recommended they have an arrangement to enable bookings or appointments for visitors – ad hoc visits should not be permitted. Professor Jim McManus, Vice President of the Association of Directors of Public Health, said: "We know it is incredibly difficult to be separated from loved ones but the restrictions were essential to protect some of the most vulnerable people in our society. This new guidance will support directors of public health, working with directors of adult social care and the local care sector, to take a risk-based approach to enabling visits where possible whilst trying to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to – and between – care home residents, staff and the wider community." Lisa Lenton, Chair, Care Providers Alliance: "The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll in many ways. The effect of not being able to see friends and family has been very difficult and very upsetting for many – both for the people who access care and support, and for their loved ones who have been isolated. "The Care Provider Alliance welcomes this overdue guidance – the CPA has been calling for government guidance for many weeks and released its own visitors protocol last month in its absence. People need people and this is such an important step for the wellbeing of individuals and their relatives."
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Fighting False Alarm Falls - The Future Is Prevention
By Nicholas Kelly is the chairman and co-founder of Axela Ltd
Through people living longer and fertility rates continuing their decline, we know that our ageing population is growing. This growth is, in turn, putting huge pressure on the UK healthcare system. Chronic illness such as arthritis, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and dementia all require copious amounts of ongoing patient care, monitoring and research resources. However, the area that costs the NHS the most - £2.3 billion per year - is one that is not being discussed. Patient falls are the number one reason that an older person is taken to A&E, and this in turn often leads to prolonged hospitalisation. There
are numerous factors that contribute to how likely falls are to happen. These range from medical conditions like Parkinson's to failing eyesight, to loose carpeting to poor lighting. Preventing falls is extremely difficult when there are over 25 risk factors at play. Increased knowledge of the environment as well as an understand of physical and physiological factors are necessary for each and every individual patient. The most effective primary preventative measures include home safety evaluation and modification, chronic disease management and a preventative course of action to address poor balance and lack of muscle tone. However, early intervention methods like these are extremely timeconsuming and rely on information from a wide range of different sources such as the patient’s GP, the social care system and hospital outpatient departments. If the risks can’t be significantly reduced through these early measures, the next best thing that can be done is to quickly assess and monitor the situation at home so that help can be summoned promptly. A wide range of equipment is available to make carers aware of patient falls and they generally come under two categories: weight detecting and personal alarms. Weight dependent-alarms consist of sensors on bed pads, floor pads and chairs which then relay information to a carer with pressure changes when the patient gets up or falls. Personal alarms inform a carer when the patient is beyond the limit of the range that’s specified for them. However, these alarms cannot actively prevent falls as they will have already happened by the time the carer has been made aware of the situation. Meanwhile, preventing falls means using a wide range of measures and the approach will vary by patient. Equipment can involve a sensor
which attaches directly to the patient or to their clothes through a wireless patch, sending a signal to a carer when the patient gets up. The sensor then detects when the leg starts to bear weight. This technology has meant a significant decrease in incidents for those in high risk categories. Wearable sensors that measure gait, body posture and speed as well as other vital signs including blood pressure, produce far fewer ‘false alarms’ than the use of a simple gyroscope. We also now even have the introduction of video technology which provides the carer with a real time view of the patient and their surroundings. The future will be a new solution for fall prevention which incorporates these two types of technology. It will include a camera along with a range of sensors which can not only reveal the physical surroundings of each patient to their carers, but also monitor their movement. The technology immediately should be able to alert the emergency services, and provide the first responders with a more in-depth and complete background of the patient, including their vital signs, which can be critical to patient recovery. It’s something we’re actively developing and our vision is to create a preventative and targeted healthcare model based on early intervention, to improve the quality of life of many older people, as well as reducing the burden and cost to UK healthcare services. By 2050 it’s projected that one in four people in the UK will be aged 65 years and older – up from one in five in 2018. Over 12.1 million people in this bracket deserve better monitoring to help prevent something that, in many cases, is avoidable.
Worthing Veterans Sing Down Memory Lane Residents of Care for Veterans (formerly The Queen Alexandra Hospital Home), based in Worthing, were treated to a trip down memory lane and an afternoon of entertainment as part of a special concert series organised by The Not Forgotten on Thursday 23rd July. The Not Forgotten, a British Armed Forces charity for serving and exservice men and women recently launched Those Not Forgotten Years, a nationwide outdoor concert tour of care homes to entertain, boost morale and lift spirits by reaching 1000s of residents across the country. Around 30 Care for Veterans residents and staff gathered in the grounds for the Sussex concert – all at a suitable social distance for a memorable afternoon to lift the lockdown blues. Residents sang along, tapped their feet and waved their arms as The Not Forgotten professional entertainment team of singers and musicians performed a set of popular classics and rousing favourites from the 30s to the 60s including a poignant special tribute the late Dame Vera Lynn. A fabulous afternoon-tea was also served evoking a real garden party feel for the residents who later relaxed in one of the homes’ new
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gardens which veterans decided to name after The Not Forgotten in recognition of the ongoing support they provide residents. Commenting on the day, Andy Neaves, Chief Executive, Care for Veterans said, “On behalf of everyone here at Care for Veterans, I’d like to thank The Not Forgotten for putting on such a fantastic show for us today. 2020 has been a difficult year everyone, not least the residents and staff at Care for Veterans. This visit has lifted the spirits of everyone living or working here and we are so grateful to The Not Forgotten for their continued support.” Brigadier James Stopford, CBE, CEO of The Not Forgotten said: “Sadly, events to commemorate VE Day, VJ Day and D Day could not take place properly this year, so we were determined to help WW2 veterans and those who have served their country mark these important days by bringing the celebrations to them.” The Not Forgotten combats isolation and loneliness amongst the Armed Forces community through social activities and challenge holidays. If you are a serving or ex-member of the Armed Forces or you know of someone that could benefit from the help of The Not Forgotten, please get in touch by contacting Tel: 0207 730 2400
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 5
Test and Trace Not Reaching Enough People Means We Risk a Second Peak Responding to the latest NHS Test and Trace statistics, Dr Layla McCay, a director at the NHS Confederation, said: “I’m glad to see improvements in the proportion of people with coronavirus whose close contacts were reached and asked to self-isolate, but we cannot ignore the fact that the benchmark for effectiveness, as recommended by the Government’s independent scientific advisers, is still not being met. “Also, we are hearing that people in the hardest hit areas are not being reached. This is too important not to get right. Without a test and trace system that is consistently robust across the whole country and effective at reaching people where the disease is particularly prevalent in a timely manner, we risk a second peak that could seriously endanger public health and put the NHS in the path of a wave of infections that could overwhelm it.”
• 3,887 people had their case transferred to the contact tracing system from which 3,098 people (79.7 per cent) were reached and asked to provide details of close contacts. • Most people reached by NHS test and trace provided details for one or more contacts and this has increased from 77.5 per cent to 79.9 per cent since last week. • 16,742 people were identified as coming into close contact with someone who has tested positive and been transferred to contact tracing. Of these, 13,034 people (77.9 per cent) were reached and asked to self-isolate, an increase from 72.0% the previous week. Of those contacts reached, 83.6 per cent were reached within 24 hours after being identified as a close contact. 55.9 per cent were contacted and asked to self isolate within 24 hours of the positive individual that reports them being transferred to contact tracing.
Council Care Funding Falls as Over-55s Worry About Costs With councils across Great Britain suggesting that they are providing less funding (-10%) for those needing long-term care, over-55s are more concerned than ever about how they would meet the costs, says a new report ‘Tackling the Care Question’ from the UK’s leading over-55s specialist adviser Key shows. 10% YOY Drop in Number of People Receiving Long Term Care Funding: Key’s report, the second from the company, asked councils in England, Wales and Scotland via FOI what proportion of those who needed long term care, they paid for in full and what proportion received some financial assistance. Data collected suggested that there could be as much as a 10% YOY drop in the number of people receiving some form of financial support for care between 2018/17 (568,867) and 2019/20 (512,916). Of the more than 205 bodies that responded, 18% were unable or unwilling to provide the requested data. Over-55s More Worried than Ever:
Against this backdrop, consumer research found that over a third (35%) of over-55s are more worried than before about how to meet the cost of care in the future – a significant rise compared to 12 months ago when just a fifth (21%)2 were concerned. Key’s report shows just one in five (20%) over-55s have made some financial provision to pay for care if they need it. Even fewer people can pay for care without worrying – just six percent estimate they are wealthy enough to fund their own care, half the proportion compared to a year ago (13%). Will Hale, CEO at Key, said: “Today’s figures suggest that between 2017/18 and 2018/19, we have seen a 10% fall in the number of people who councils are providing full or partial care funding for but this may only be part of the picture. Indeed, we know that councils are working hard to support local residents who need care but are facing tough financial challenges and may need to make difficult choices. ”At the same time as councils are under pressure, over-55s are waking up to the reality that they may well need to pay for all or some of their care in later life. This has created the perfect storm and it is vital that the Government focuses on setting out clear plans for reaching a cross-party consensus on social care, and consider long-term reform and funding of the care system. Around a third (29%) of over-55s now plan to use their homes to help them pay for care in the future (+10% from 19% in 2019). A combination of low interest rates and continuing stock market volatility has reduced the focus on other ways of funding care. Around a third (34%) of over-
55s plan to use their savings and investments compared with 44% a year ago. Also popular is using pension income, which three in 10 (30%) plan to do, although this has likewise fallen in popularity in the last 12 months (from 40%). However, a quarter of people either don’t know how they would meet their care costs (15%) or wouldn’t be able to meet the costs (10%). One in 12 (8%) would have to sell any valuables they have to fund their care in 2020 – up three percentage points compared to 2019 (5%). Will Hale, CEO at Key, said: “When you speak to people, you find that the vast majority are keen to receive care and support in the comfort of their own home but struggle to decide how they can meet these costs. With the recent economic turmoil, confidence in savings and pension income has fallen while more people are looking to the value tied up in bricks and mortar to finance care. Getting good advice and understanding what resources you have to draw on is important – and making sure you factor these potential costs into your retirement planning is vital.” Regional data: Across the country, the amount funding by local councils varies. Local authorities in London are the most likely to say they provide full funding, with 52% of applicants fully funded, while in Scotland and the North West, 13% and 20% respectively are fully funded. In some areas the percentage who are fully funded increased, such as in the North East where the percentage increased from 13% to 21% and Wales where it rose from 16% to 29%.
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Adult Social Care Workforce Grows Again to Meet Increasing Demand The number of people working in adult social care across has increased again to 1.52 million according to a new report by Skills for Care. Their annual ‘Size and structure of the adult social care workforce in England’ report also reveals that if the adult social care workforce grows proportional to the projected number of people aged 65 and over in the population, then the number of adult social care jobs would need to increase by 520,000 jobs to around 2.17 million jobs by 2035. Skills for Care’s Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS) is funded by the Department of Health and Social care and uses workforce data supplied by twenty thousand frontline employers. The data used in this report for the 2019/20 period was collected prior to the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in England. Other key findings from the report include: • An estimated 18,200 organisations were involved in providing or organising adult social care in England. • An estimated 38,000 establishments were involved in providing or organising adult social care in England. • It is estimated that approximately 70,000 direct payment recipients were employing their own staff.
• Since 2012/13, the number of adult social care jobs has increased by 9% or 130,000 jobs, to 1.65 million jobs in 2019/20. • The rate of increase for adult social care jobs has slowed – between 2014/15 and 2019/20, the workforce grew by around 15,000 jobs per year compared to an average increase of 26,000 jobs per year between 2012/13 and 2014/15. • Since 2012/13, the workforce has continued to shift away from local authority jobs (a decrease of 25%, or 37,000 jobs) and towards independent sector jobs (an increase of 11%, or 130,000 jobs). • The number of jobs in domiciliary services increased at a faster rate between 2012/13 and 2019/20 – an increase of 95,000 jobs and 15% – than jobs in residential services – an increase of 25,000 jobs and 4%. • Registered nurses were one of the only jobs in adult social care to see a significant decrease over the period down 15,500, or 30% since 2012/13. Skills for Care CEO Oonagh Smyth said: “We are grateful to all the employers who have contributed their data because as we start to think about what the adult social care sector will look like after the pandemic it is vital we do that based on the gold standard data in this report.” “This report is a reminder of the vital role our growing workforce will play in any future reform of our sector and their skills, knowledge and commitment to person centred care will support people to live the lives they want to.” Care England, the largest representative body for independent providers of adult social care, has welcomed the publication of Skills for Care’s workforce report. Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “This report corroborates many of those key messages which Care
England and the sector at large have been putting to the Government both during and before the COVID-19 pandemic. The report highlights in stark terms the need for further investment in the adult social care sector if we are to meet the demographic demands of the future”. Skills for Care’s ‘The Size and structure of the adult social care sector and workforce in England’ comments upon the workforce pressures that have been leveraged upon the adult social care sector as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, the average number of days lost to sickness, including staff self isolating and shielding, was around 8.0% between March and June 2020, compared to 2.4% pre-COVID-19. It also reasserts the worrying path which the UK Government has taken with its exclusion of a care workers route the countries post-Brexit immigration system. However, if the Government continues along this route then it must be followed by significant levels of investment in the adult social care workforce. The report can be found at www.skillsforcare.org.uk Martin Green continues: “This report makes it crystal clear that in the coming weeks and months, both providers and the adult social care workforce need to be prioritised as they remain at the frontline in combatting COVID-19. Furthermore the trend of a shift away from local authority jobs towards independent sector jobs articulates the need for the independent sector to involved in the future development of adult social care”. The full report can be downloaded here www.skillsforcare.org.uk/sizeandstructure
Lords Urge Government to Prepare Now to Try to Avert Winter COVID-19 Spike In a letter sent to the Prime Minister, the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee strongly recommends that the Government undertake significant preparations over the next two months to reduce the likelihood of a winter COVID-19 resurgence. Lord Patel, Committee Chair, has written to the Prime Minister highlighting evidence heard from top medical and scientific advisors that ‘it will be vital to suppress levels of infection of the virus to as low as possible before the winter’. “More could be done to reduce levels of infection” The Committee finds that not enough is being done to reduce infection levels before October, especially in England, and states that the Government should set a target for the levels of infection it aims to be at by October. The letter also expresses concerns over stretching the NHS and the Test and Trace system beyond capacity if preparations and testing are not geared up now. And yet the Committee heard that “Less than half the population in England are aware that they are eligible for a test.” “In the winter months the number of people presenting with COVID-like symptoms will increase significantly” The Committee finds that the Government may be underestimating testing requirements and that previous suggestions from the PM that 500,000 tests being available each day by the end of October is still not enough. The letter says that more testing must be done in high-risk environments and high-exposure occupations, some of which have not yet been identi-
fied, and that the Government must explore multiplex testing strategies urgently which could distinguish the virus from other illnesses. “As case numbers reduce, a more local response is absolutely critical” Lord Patel also expresses concerns over imbalances between national and local management of the pandemic in England and recommends that the Government should more closely involve local public health authorities and other local health services. “It is vital that the Government delivers a concerted public health campaign over the next two months” The Committee finds that the Government’s public messaging falls short. Lord Patel suggests the Prime Minister must quickly put in place a public health campaign focusing on behaviours that can help supress virus transmission and that the Government must be transparent about the rationale behind those steps. The letter also highlights the need for “greater transparency in how scientific advice is used in making policy, and greater clarity on who is responsible for implementing policies.” It stresses that the Government should provide fuller explanations to the public about the rationale for the actions that they are being asked to take. Lord Patel, Committee Chair, commented:“The Committee has heard overwhelming evidence about the potential for a resurgence of the virus in the winter. I have therefore written to the Prime Minister with five specific recommendations for preparations that need to be made over the next two months. We urge the Government to act quickly in putting these recommendations into action.”
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PAGE 8 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
Caring for Care Staff – Avoiding ‘Burnout’ By Leyla El Moudden, Naturopath (www.healthy.co.uk) There is ample statistical evidence that healthy well rested and happy staff, are more likely to remain in their jobs, make fewer errors, advance professionally, be more productive and take fewer sickness absences. In an environment such as a care home, one that is that is rife with demand, pressure, emotion – and now too the additional pressures of corona virus: how do care homes make sure their staff remain consistent, healthy and motivated to meet the demands of their day. In a holistic wellness system, there are three primary components that together create what we refer to as ‘wellness’. These three components are: mental, social and physical health. By being in tune with the early signs and signals that one of these elements are out of balance, managers and staff can prevent exhaustion, and maintain performance: even in tough times. Let’s take each element one by one. Mental health refers to a combination of stress, and emotional health. The earliest signs of stress tend to show up in sleep patterns. When staff appear in looking tired, or mentioning that they have been ‘awake since 3am’ for apparently no reason – this is an early signal that the stress hormone cortisol is disrupting the healthy balance of cortisol, a stress hormone. Stress induced cortisol imbalance often leads to coping strategies such as the use of stimulants such as caffeine or sugar to combat tiredness – eventually leading to state we in Naturopathy called ‘tired and wired’. Sleep deprived staff are depleted of the rest they need for their bodies to function well, but are being kept artificially animated with false energy from stimulants. Consider allowing staff to take sleep days, or sleep mornings to keep them well rested, and also to offset the build up of stress, and the disruptive cycle of stimulation and depletion that follows. Staying in a stress, sleep, stimulate cycle will eventually reduce immunity and overall health leading to unpredictable absences and loss of motivation.
Healthy staff are productive staff – so it is more advantageous to let a staff member sleep for a day or a morning, then to have unpredictable sickness absence for multiple days at a time. Social health is a reflection of our innate human need to be together with others. Longevity studies on centenarians (people who live past 100 years old) have researched populations all over the world to find out the habits that lead to long life. What they found was that whilst diet plays a role, what these centenarians had most in common was they spend a lot of time around other people – they spent a lot of time in the company of others. Your staff need to spend time with people to remain healthy and productive: their family, their loved ones, their children or marital partner. Isolation from these things leads to lower health and according to the research, shorter life as well. When staff request time to be with their families, try to avoid panicking or responding with negativity. Granting this time and space is giving your staff a source of health that is essential to their wellbeing, and therefore their loyalty and diligence in working for your organisation – they will come back from socialising happier and healthier and that is never a bad thing. Physical health in holistic health and wellness can be described simply as ‘having more than enough energy to meet the demands of your life’. Sensations of energy such as the ability to wake up and get out of bed with ease, to carry an item up and down the stairs with comfort – to have energy to go to that evening with friends, to finish that piece of work, to mow the lawn is a signal of health. Feeling tired, lethargic, sluggish or slower can all point to nutrient deficiency. Work, stress and lack of adequate rest will begin to deplete human nutrient stores such a bone and muscle leading to feelings of fragility and weakness, and eventually lowered immunity and sickness. The more depleted a person becomes the more difficult they find simple tasks like cooking a healthy meal, and drinking water leading to a cycle of nutrient depletion. A simple way of ensuring a person has adequate nutrition is to make sure that for as many days of the week they ‘eat a rainbow’. This means eating a food from every colour: red, purple, orange, yellow, green. A poster in the staff room is an easy way to encourage and remind staff to consume enough nutrition to generate the energy they need to meet the demands of the day.
How To Recommence Care Home Visits Safely By Charles Spencer, Principal Health & Safety Consultant at Ellis Whittam (www.elliswhittam.com)
We have reached a critical point in the coronavirus pandemic where the government feels that, if done safely, care home visits can now resume following the publication of new guidance on 22 July. It is imperative that visits are conducted in a safe manner to ensure that within the home environment, nobody is put at further risk. We are all too aware of the devastating effects of an on-site outbreak, and at the same time know just how detrimental loneliness can be to a resident’s health. As such, careful management is essential, and those involved in implementing safe visiting procedures should start by familiarising themselves with the government guidance before allowing visits to take place. The guidance emphasises the need for risk assessment, taking into
account the specifics of the care home and the community context, supported by a visitor policy. It then goes into detail on decision-making, infection control precautions and communication, which provides a useful starting point from which to develop your risk assessment. At Ellis Whittam, we are recommending that care homes consider the following areas when deciding on the most appropriate control measures to implement: • Ensure you follow the basics. Although we are still learning about COVID-19, we do know that social distancing, handwashing and cleaning measures can be very effective in the fight against the virus. • Reduce the chance of the virus entering the home. A suitable system will need to be put in place to manage visiting hours and the number of people that can visit at one time. Health screening is also vitally important, and it is essential to ask the visitor to provide details of any potential symptoms they have or have had to prevent the virus from entering the home. A visiting record will also need to be kept, including the name and contact details of visitors and the date of their visit, in order to assist with the NHS tracing of potential contacts. • Decide on the most comfortable but most effective place for visits to take place. The scientific data has shown that adequate and effective ventilation reduces the potential for the virus to spread via air droplets. Accordingly, being outside has been proven to be one of the most effective ways of preventing transmission. If visits cannot take place outside for whatever reason, a suitable room within the building should be chosen which can be well ventilated. Homes will also need to consider the entry and exits points and any areas where visitors could potentially come into contact with people other than the resident they are visiting. For this reason, we recommend that the visiting area be as close to the entrance as possible. Social distancing of two metres with-
in the visiting area will also need to be provided; although the guidance now advises a distance of one metre plus with additional controls, being that the care sector is so vulnerable to outbreaks, social distancing should be managed as stringently as possible. Screens have also been proven to be an effective method of stopping the spread between people. • Reduce the potential of spread within the home. Regular disinfections of the visiting area, corridors and entry points, as well as toilet facilities, will reduce the risk of virus being spread should it enter the home. Having suitable hand sanitiser stations within the entrance and exit areas, as well as in the visiting area, will also encourage good hygiene amongst visitors. It is also important to consider the furniture within this area, ensuring that it can be wiped down with ease. Visitors should also be encouraged to wear face coverings when entering and moving around the home; although this will not provide absolute protection from the virus, it will reduce the risk of them passing on the virus to others, especially those who are vulnerable. This is a crucial moment for care homes, and while it will require careful planning, recommencing visits is a sign that things are moving in the right direction. Provided the right decisions are made, thorough risk assessments are in place, and appropriate safety precautions are implemented, care homes can hope to return to some semblance of normality, ensuring that residents’ physical and mental health remain top priority. You can download free health and safety resources for care providers, including a Visiting Protocol, Visiting Proforma and Risk Assessment Templates, from the Coronavirus Advice Hub: https://elliswhittam.com/covid-19/register/?v=thecarer
Cambridgeshire Care Group’s Head of Rehab & Nursing Commended After Completing Master’s The head of rehabilitation and nursing at a Cambridgeshire care group has received certification of the completion of her Master’s degree – a rare level of achievement reached in the social care sector. Priscilla Masvipurwa, Head of Rehab & Nursing Services and Registered Manager at Askham Village Community, near Doddington in Cambridgeshire, used her Master’s dissertation to explore the role nurses play in care homes to deliver psychology interventions, an area previously uninvestigated in the mainstream and a topic close to her heart. Her work looked at the lack of framework and structure in place to capture, meet, and deliver the psychological needs of the residents and staff in care homes, finding that people tend to treat the physical health issues without looking into the mental health needs – a mind-set that needs shifting. Commenting on why she chose to write about the topic, Priscilla said: “No one had looked at the lack of psychological support for people living in care homes. Registered Nurses, more often than not, provide that much needed psychological support with limited resources, addressing such issues without a formalised structure in place. I want people to understand that mental health should be viewed on a continuum where mental health and mental illness are at two extremes. Depending on several factors including availability of support, people maintain good mental health or develop a mental illness. Hence the need for people to be supported to cope with psychological difficulties to reduce the likelihood of developing mental illness.” She added: “Ultimately, we live in a world where problems are easily medicalised. In care homes, Registered Nurses need to address symptoms of depression or anxiety, particularly establishing in a timely manner whether symptoms are secondary to physical health issues or a result of social issues. Registered Nurses must be equipped with resources including training to assist in early identification of symptoms. They must also provide support to people living in care homes, more so now with a rise in anxiety and depression resulting from the devastating effects of living with pandemic threat.”
During the course of her studies, Priscilla noted that in care homes, while Registered Nurses strive to meet the physical health needs of residents, what really drives recovery forward is good mental health and emotional wellbeing. If this is left unattended then it’s highly likely the individual will remain in care longer than they need to. She puts it down to the individual’s appraisal of the situation and that, no matter what physical health intervention they undergo, automatic negative thoughts that lead to anxiety will stop them from fulfilling their goals or reaching their full potential. Priscilla’s dissertation concluded that residents living in care homes would benefit from a model that focuses on the interplay between biological, psychological, and socio-environmental factors to give residents a better chance of recovery. The mother-of-two finished the final year of her Master’s while working full-time for Askham, completing her thesis just prior to the COVID-19 lockdown, which saw her effortlessly juggling appraising her entire team and working on business continuity plans while finishing and proofing her thesis. An achievement Askham’s Operations Director, Aliyyah-Begum Nasser, believes is a testament to her tenacity, curiosity, and competence. Priscilla, who supports the rehabilitation of people with acquired brain injury and other complex health care needs at Askham, said: “Care homes rarely invest in higher education programmes such as a Master’s degree, but Askham were unrelenting in their support for me from day one. I could have shelved my work when I joined but it made so much sense to write about the environment I was in. It’s only been one year but I’ve learned a lot and grown in an area that is very unique. I’m still learning and enjoying every single day. “I’ve definitely further developed my skills in carrying out Continuing Health Care, DST assessments, and more so people management from a coaching perspective. It was the right environment for my Master’s Degree in Mental Health Psychology and being able to work with people while studying has helped me hone my coaching skills.”
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 9
The Carer’s Newest Unsung Hero is… …Helen Miller, activities coordinator at Beechwood Care Home in Wishaw in Scotland
We are absolutely thrilled to announce that Helen Miller (pictured below) activities coordinator at Beechwood care home in Wishaw Lanarkshire Scotland, is THE CARER Unsung Hero! Regular readers will know that we run a twice yearly “Unsung Hero” award the prize being a luxury 2-night break for 2 people in a choice of over 300 hotels in the United Kingdom (but since we started the choice of hotels has now extended into Europe)! However, given the monumental efforts staff from all departments within the residential and nursing care sector during this current pandemic we decided to add on an extra award!
We were absolutely thrilled with the number of nominations and absolute heart-warming stories we received of staff going above and beyond what is expected in the most difficult of circumstances. We all here at THE CARER are extremely humbled. It was once again a very difficult task for the team here at The Carer to pick a winner, the crisis has really shown that an industry often taken for granted can be called upon at a time of national crisis, and we will strongly be lobbying for the government to recognise and reward the sector. We were overwhelmed with the response to this latest and impromptu Unsung Hero competition – an accolade we have been delighted and proud to award these past few years. Our award is a simple no-frills, glitz or glamour award, just a small gesture on our part, recognising the hard work, compassion, commitment and dedication those working in the industry possess! So, once again we here at The Carer are delighted to announce that Helen Miller, activities coordinator at Beechwood Care Home in Wishaw Lanarkshire in Scotland, is our winner! Spokesperson Jenni Mack at Holmes Care Group which has 13 residential and nursing care homes around the UK said: “Helen is an Activities Coordinator at Beechwood and has always been at the centre of everything going on there. She connects with residents on an individual basis and matches activities to them in a truly person centred way.” “She is also the bus driver and planner whenever trips are organised. Lockdown has sadly meant that she couldn’t take residents out anywhere but this didn’t stop Helen from getting her residents on trips. Helen went virtual and has since taken her residents on virtual tours in their lounge to Wimbledon, Phantom of the Opera in London, America, Largs (a small seaside town in Scotland where many residents visited as children for holidays), Dublin and many more….. Each virtual tour includes music, songs, snacks, drinks and dressing up from each place they visit. She added “Residents have responded wonderfully to this and their family members delighted to see such fun going on to keep their loved ones busy while they can’t get in to visit. Helen does this over and above her everyday activities and keeps the wellbeing of residents at the heart of everything she does. From creating seat head rests for authentic tour bus/aeroplane feel, to costumes, props and cakes, and of course always willing to look silly to raise smiles and laughs.” “Helen is an unsung hero and we are delighted to see her rewarded for her great ideas, kindness, dedication and skills as a bringer of joy”! Worthy winner Helen can now look forward to a wonderful twonight break for two in a selection of luxury hotels throughout the UK! We started the award back in 2015 we just had one outright winner, however as it became more difficult to pick an overall winner we added to runner-up prizes and we are delighted to say that Isabel Ngwenya, a senior support worker at the Shine group, and Brian Thornton, who is maintenance officer at Maidstone Care Centre in Kent, or our to “official” runners-up and £50
Marks & Spencer’s gift voucher is on its way to them both. Since picking winners and runners-up was the most difficult of tasks, after sitting round the table finding it virtually impossible, we decided to add an extra 5 “unofficial runner ups”! Just a small gesture on our part to show some appreciation not only to the nominees but to those people who took the time to nominate them. We are very proud to be involved in such a vital and dedicated industry and are 5 unofficial runner ups were: Adam- a kitchen assistant Woodfield Court care home in Suffolk Lindsey Milliken - a clinical lead at Edensor Care Centre in Essex Paul Davidson - maintenance man at Norlington Care and Nursing Home in Dorset Tim Emburey - team leader and trainer at Chestnut View Care Home in Surrey Lewis Davies - Wellbeing Assistant at Ruddington Manor, Wilford in Nottingham A £25 Marks & Spencer’s gift voucher is on its way to each Well done to you all!!! We would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who put forward nominations we had a wonderful response, it may sound tired old cliché but it is not meant to be, when we say, that in our eyes “every nomination was a winner” and we are just sorry we cannot give an award to everybody! Watch out for further details of our next “Unsung Hero” with the same great prize of a luxury break for two people in the choice of hotels throughout the UK!
PAGE 10 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
Safe, Dignified and Appropriate: The Importance of New Approaches to Elderly Living By Jitesh Patel, Social Care Sector Lead at Kajima Partnerships
Covid-19 has created new, immediate challenges for the elderly care sector. But it has also cast a light on a significant underlying challenge that must be confronted – specifically, the capacity, quality and sophistication of senior living being delivered. The coronavirus pandemic has laid plain the need to adopt and integrate new approaches to care, leveraging technology, rethinking care home design and providing tiered living options that protect health, dignity and independence for generations to come.
General and acute hospital bed numbers have declined by 34% in the UK since 1989, whilst poor integration between services has both exacerbated cases of bed blocking and raised vital questions about the continuation of support following discharge. In 2015, 20% of service users reported that they had not received the level of support they needed after leaving hospital. Appropriate “step-down” care provision is required to ease patients from acute care and reduce knock-on pressure on primary services. With Covid-19 creating new pressures on services and capacity, there is now an even greater imperative to adopt step-down approaches to care, including new outpatient beds, robust integration with community teams and access to therapies and outpatient services through Community Treatment and Care Centres. Step-down care has a vital part to play in not only in continuing to champion people’s mental and physical health, but also in ensuring that services can remain robust and resilient in the wake of this pandemic and beyond.
THE CHALLENGE AT HAND
Just 2.5% of the UK’s current housing stock is defined as retirement living, whilst the number of purpose-built homes offering care services accounts for as little as 0.7% of the UK’s 29 million homes. So, in addition to improved step down care services, there is a clear need for accommodation that can adapt to people’s evolving needs for the long-term, for instance flexing up with added care in response to changing medical conditions or reduced mobility. Not only does this promote independence and protect people’s dignity, it also eliminates the need for people to move or relocate unnecessarily to access care. Technology can also play a significant role in enhancing independence. For instance, wearable technology and motion sensors can create a responsive living environment and help people to navigate footfall routes without full-time care. In a pandemic setting, such technology also maintains patient access to support teams, as well as minimising potential infection risks of high touch points in
At present, 18% of the UK population is aged 65 or over – some 12 million people. By 2066, this is estimated by rise by an additional 8.6 million UK residents. Yet research by Knight Frank has indicated that there are currently just 700,000 senior living units in England, with the delivery of new elderly living options failing to keep pace with an aging population. This pressure is only likely to grow. It is estimated that 13 million people above the age of 65 will live in unsuitable accommodation by 2040, as the UK population continues to age. But we must also recognise that there is no ‘one size fits all’ model for appropriate living and that, if we are to successfully address and meet demand, a new approach to elderly living and care is urgently needed.
CARE FOR THE LONG-TERM
Forging Friendships at Borough Care Many people worry that moving into a care home will mean they are lonely, but this couldn’t be further from the truth at Borough Care. Borough Care’s eleven homes for older people across Stockport are places of laughter and fun, where true friendships are born, and life is lived in colour. As the world marks International Friendship Day (Thursday 30 July), residents will be enjoying spending time with friends they have made since moving to a Borough Care home. Liz Turner and Irene Cole have become great friends since moving separately into Borough Care’s Reinbek home in Davenport. Despite not knowing each other before they moved to Reinbek, Liz and Irene felt an instant connection when they met. They spend much of their time together having fun, enjoying a glass of wine and watching the same dramas on television. They enjoy having a boogie at the monthly tea dance and singing duets on the karaoke machine, the activity they are most famous for at Reinbek.
DESIGNING FOR WELLBEING But alongside investing in new living options, we must also consider how care home design can evolve to best meet older people’s needs, especially balancing the mental health benefits of community against the need for privacy and new health and safety requirements following Covid-19. Community has a vital part to play in promoting wellbeing, the importance of which became starkly apparent in June, as senior care leaders called for a lifting of the lockdown restrictions for care homes amid growing mental health concerns for older people. But balancing this against the need for privacy is paramount. By sharing multiple communal spaces between smaller cohorts of residents and combining this with small measures, such as en-suite facilities for all, residential care homes can ensure that people have their own private spaces alongside the social benefits of communal living. In a period of social distancing, this can help to manage potential infection risks, isolating residents in groups to protect their dignity, mental and physical health. To best meet people’s needs requires long term investment in assets, including care home design that puts people’s wellbeing and health at the centre.
A NEW ERA FOR CARE Covid-19 has highlighted the importance of tiered approaches to care – be that short term step-down options or long term extra care living – and it is clear that there is much to be done to provide universal access to attractive, appropriate and dignified living options that meet the needs of our aging population. Only by investing in care homes, holding and enhancing these assets for the long term, leveraging new design possibilities and harnessing the benefits of technology can we seize the opportunity to deliver the elderly living the public need and deserve for the decades to come.
Irene, 68, was the first of the pair to move to Reinbek. Irene spent most of her career working as a home carer in Stockport. Her husband, Barry, is often at Reinbek, volunteering in the garden and, pre-lockdown, joining the trips out. Knowing Irene has formed such a close friendship with Liz has been a real comfort to Barry and their four children, especially during lockdown. Liz was born and raised in Alnwick, Northumberland. It was here she met her late husband, Peter. Liz and Peter had two sons and she now has five grandchildren, who bring her great joy. After suffering a stroke, Liz needed the 24-hour support and care that Reinbek offers and moved into the home. Dr Mark Ward, CEO at Borough Care, says: “It’s great that strong friendship bonds have developed between residents at our homes. Making new friends in a residential home is really beneficial to the individuals concerned, as it can help people settle in and improves their wellbeing. Our regular programme of different activities means people can join in with likeminded residents and strike up friendships through their mutual interests.”
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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 11
Austerity ‘Ripped Resilience Out of Health and Care Service’ Before Covid-19 Crisis Hit, Says IPPR Austerity ‘ripped resilience out of health and care service’ before Covid-19 crisis hit, says IPPR Underinvestment in social and community care left four in five hospitals with ‘dangerously low’ spare beds as crisis hit Major new analysis of the state of the health and care system in England in the run up to the Covid-19 pandemic today reveals the extent of the crisis that was facing medics and carers even before the crisis hit. The report argues that a decade of austerity had ‘ripped the resilience out of the heath and care service’ leaving it in a ‘dire state’ just as it faced its greatest challenge since its founding. The IPPR think tank analysis of NHS and international data found that just before the crisis hit: • Hospital beds – Four in five hospitals had bed occupancy levels above the acceptable safe limit (85 per cent). In three out of five hospitals, bed occupancy exceeded 90 per cent. • Intensive care beds – England had just 700 open and unoccupied ICU beds at the end of 2019. The South West had access to the least, just 51. • Staffing – The health service is severely understaffed, causing increased strain on healthcare professionals. For the UK to meet top international standards the UK would need 49,600 more long-term care workers, 70,000 more doctors and 220,000 more nurses. • Innovation – The UK is very short of CT and MRI scanners compared to similar advanced countries. Our adoption of new treatments is also markedly slower. • Public health – While smoking rates were below the international average, the UK has higher levels of excess weight and alcohol consumption. These were either linked to vulnerability to Covid-19 or cause underlying health conditions that increased individuals’ risk. The pandemic also exposed the vast health inequalities in the UK.
• Overall funding – The UK currently spends £27.7 billion less on health annually, relative to the size of its economy than the G7 average. The IPPR report says that while the NHS in England was not overrun by Covid-19, the lack of capacity in the health system forced government to make harmful policy choices. This included 2 million cancelled ‘non-urgent’ or ‘routine’ treatments; the delayed screening, treatment or diagnosis of cancer for 2.4 million people; and a mass discharge of thousands of patients. The latter often put strain on social care and, at times, meant Covid-19 positive patients were sent to care homes. While the report does not criticise the overall strategy of moving care into social, community and home settings, it does highlight that it was a historic failing for so many of them to have been in hospital beds in the first place. The report points to the chronic shortage of beds in care homes and the crisis in social care as a primary cause.
BUILDING LONG-TERM RESILIENCE IPPR argues that had just a fraction of the Westminster government’s covid-19 economic response been invested in the health and care service before the pandemic, there could have been as considerably better health outcome. For example, had the £1.3 billion given to support discharge during the coronavirus crisis been invested in early 2019 it could have paid for a combined 3,600 hospital beds, 7,000 nursing home beds, 8,500 care home beds, 10.8 million hours of community care and 2 million occupational therapy sessions in that year. This investment would have significantly eased pressure not only during normal times, but also helped build the resilience needed to handle health crisis such as Covid-19, according to IPPR. The think tank therefore calls for a long-term approach for the health and care service in England, to build resilience for any future crisis and
Sensational Gardens Competition! Share your beautiful outside spaces with Royal Star & Garter residents, and be in with a chance of winning a £50 voucher Royal Star & Garter is launching a new fundraising competition for budding gardening enthusiasts and expert green-fingered growers. The Sensational Gardens competition follows the increased interest in gardening following the COVID-19 lockdown. Participants are being asked to enter photos or videos of their botanical efforts from window boxes to vegetable patches, which will be judged by residents in the charity’s three Homes. The winner of each of the Sensational Gardens competition’s three categories will receive a £50 voucher to spend at a garden centre. The competition launched on Tuesday 21 July, and is £3 for each entry. Entrants can add an additional donation on top of this, and every penny raised will go to Royal Star & Garter.
to ensure the system isn’t always ‘running hot’ during normal times: • Capacity – Bring hospital spare bed numbers to safe levels and add significant capacity to social and community care, by investing £8 billion in extra ‘catch-up’ funding to the community sector between now and the end of the parliament. • Staffing – Expand the NHS People Plan by recruiting 400,000 more NHS workers and 250,000 more social care workers by 2030; and guarantee open immigration routes for healthcare workers for as long as we have shortages. • Modernisation – Upgrade adoption of healthcare technology and treatment to at least match the top international standards. • Public health – Set out a prevention white paper to reach higher standards on excess weight, alcohol consumption, long-term condition management and vaccination levels. • Health inequality – Establish a new health inequality committee – modelled on the National Security Council and chaired by the PM – to deliver progress on tackling health inequality. • Funding – Increase NHS funding to at least £183 billion by 2030. The capital component of the Department of Health budget should also rise to £13 billion by 2025 to tackle the growing backlog of maintenance issues, including fire hazards and sewage leaks, on the NHS estate. Chris Thomas, IPPR senior research fellow and lead author of the study, said: “For more than a decade, health and care has been ruled by a brutal austerity logic – championed by people who said it would make the UK more efficient. Covid-19 has shown they were wrong. “Far from making public services more efficient, austerity stripped resilience out of the health and care service – taking away beds, devastating social care, pushing staff out of the sector, and ignoring public health.
Residents enjoy spending time in the gardens in the three Royal Star & Garter Homes. They tend to flowers, grow fruit and vegetables in raised beds, and enjoy relaxing in the beautiful surroundings. It is a vital part of the holistic care and well-being the charity provides its residents. The Sensational Garden competition aims to acknowledge and celebrate our gardens. Its three categories are: • The favourite part of your outdoor space Your happiest moment in the garden • What you are most proud of growing • Senior Community Fundraiser Lauren Baker, responsible for overseeing the event, said: “Our residents love spending time in our gardens, and we know lots of people across the country have spent a lot of time in their outdoor spaces during lockdown. This great new competition allows us to celebrate our sensational gardening moments together. We know our residents will love seeing and judging the entries.” Deadline for entries is 21 August, with the winners announced by 28 August. Each entry can be submitted by visiting http://starandgarter.org/gardens
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Keeping Residents Connected: 3 Tips For Better WiFi
By Simon Hayler of GHM Care (www.ghmcare.co.uk)
Data from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) with BT Openreach shows that 7,000 care homes in England are without adequate Internet connections. Only a third of the sector is fully digital, with the remaining two-thirds either entirely paper-based or using a mix of paper and digital. This is despite the UN defining internet access as a human right in 2016. And because of lockdown, residents of care homes have been even more isolated. Not only have they been unable to see family properly, with most care homes suspending visits altogether, but online communication such as video calling, emailing and messaging, taken for granted by most of us, are also out of reach. It’s fair to say that the lag in digital telecoms has caught up with many care homes during the current pandemic, who are now looking to catch up and connect lonely residents to the outside world. There are many research projects that have examined the impact access to a computer and social media could have on reducing loneliness and isolation in the elderly. The majority point to feelings of belonging, self-competence and general wellbeing all receiving a hefty boost, along with an increase in cognitive capacities.
In recognition of this, a new drive to help care homes get connected to the Internet during the COVID-19 crisis was announced by the government. Matthew Gould, Chief Executive Officer for NHSX, said: “Being online is crucial to enable access to services, such as video consultations or secure email, and it can allow residents to stay connected to families and friends, which has never been more important than it is now. We know that many in the care sector face challenges with Internet connectivity. That’s why NHSX is working with telecom companies to help care providers. This scheme will make it easier for care homes to get internet access, or to improve the service they’ve got.” But whilst the absence of internet access has been exacerbated during lockdown, a good WiFi network is increasingly becoming a ‘must’ for many older people looking to move into residential care regardless. According to the retirement housing provider Anchor, well over half of older people want it too. In its survey of what makes the perfect retirement village, a sense of community and friendly neighbours came out top but 64 per cent also listed broadband as “very important”. As a result, many retirement living providers are including better access to WiFi in their properties. So what should care homes be looking for when seeking out a new or improved WiFi network? Here is our 3 point check list to better WiFi:
1. OPT FOR WIFI 6 By 2021, streaming video over the Internet will be 82% of all Internet traffic. The 2020s will bring widespread use of IOT devices in care homes and more personal devices. WiFi 6 technology improves multi-user MIMO (DL MU-MIMO) capability to help bridge the gap between the access point capability and the client device capability. Access points are physically larger, support more antennas, are plugged into the AC mains for continuous power, and include high-performance CPUs and DRAM.
By upgrading now, businesses can deliver more simultaneous streams, and support more concurrent users and devices than before. The standard will be ratified in late 2020, and factors include the availability of equipment and support and the population of Wi-Fi 6 devices.
2. USE ENTERPRISE WIFI ACCESS POINTS A good access point architecture reduces the number of points required and takes away any of those dead spots so every resident and member of staff can get connected, regardless of where they are in the home. There are several reasons for wanting a Wireless Access Point (WAP) in your care home. Your router’s Wi-Fi signal might not cover your whole building, for a start, leaving dead spots that need to be catered for. And in scenarios where less capable routers are ill-equipped to handle large amounts of throughout from an increasing number of smart devices entering homes, the best wireless access points can help share the load.
3. THINK INTEGRATION When installing or upgrading your WiFi, it’s a great time to consider what other technologies you use and which can be integrated to make significant savings both immediately and in the long run. It’s also the perfect opportunity to access the many devices and applications that rely on a corporate grade WiFi network. For example many traditional landline telephone systems are no longer needed when the right WiFi system is in place. A hosted telephone system, with all calls included and much more flexibility, is a far better and cheaper alternative. We work with many care homes to consolidate and integrate WiFi, Corporate & Resident IT Networks, Telephone Systems, Nursecall and porting residents and main telephone numbers. Upgrading your WiFi is the perfect opportunity to assess your entire infrastructure and a specialist service provider will help you do just that.
Residents at Hope House Care Home Reunited with Their Families Residents at Hope House care home in Clayton-Le-Moors, Accrington, are overjoyed after being able to see their family face-to-face for the first time since government restrictions were eased. Since March, residents at the home have been keeping in touch with their families virtually because visits to the home had been restricted to ensure the safety of residents. Now, one relative at a time is able to visit their loved ones in Hope House care home’s garden, while adhering to social distancing requirements. One of the residents who has enjoyed an afternoon in the sun with her family member is Evelyn Corris, 99. Evelyn is one of four children, two sisters and one brother, who have sadly passed away. Evelyn has two of her own children, Derek Corris and Jean Plumbley, and feels lucky to have had both a boy and a girl. Evelyn said: “The toughest thing about lock down for me is not being able to cuddle my family, I’ve not been able to do it for such a long time! “The second toughest thing is not being able to see my hairdresser! I
might be 99 but I love having my hair cut and looking my best. When I look in the mirror I think to myself ‘oh heck’, and the staff always say I look beautiful but they must be pulling my leg!” Derek Corris, Evelyn’s son, said: “After months of looking through a window, its wonderful to be able to see mum in the flesh outside in the fresh air. My sister Jean and myself have visited mum’s window regularly to keep her in good spirits, thank goodness she has a ground floor room! I would like to give a massive thankyou to all the staff at Hope House for all their efforts, it’s great to look at mum and see her so happy. Cathy Yates, home manager at Hope House care home, said: “Being able to welcome back families to Hope House care home was a longawaited day by us all. Though we have done our very best to keep everyone in touch virtually, being able to spend time with each other in person again has been priceless for our residents and their relatives. “We’re blessed to have a spacious garden to host a family member at a safe distance and look forward to seeing more faces very soon.”
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 13
Most Comprehensive Flu Programme in UK’s History Rolled Out This Winter The most comprehensive flu vaccination programme in the UK’s history has been announced by the government today (Friday 24 July). Providers will work to vaccinate more than 30 million people during this flu season – millions more than received it last year. A significant new group will be eligible for the free flu vaccine as people over 50-64 will be invited later in the season for a vaccination. As part of an unprecedented drive, a free flu vaccine will also be available to: • People who are on the Shielded Patient List and members of their household • All school year groups up to Year 7 • People aged over 65, pregnant women, those with pre-existing conditions including at-risk under 2s Once vaccination of the most ‘at-risk’ groups is well underway, the department will work with clinicians to decide when to open the programme to invite people aged 50-64, with further details to be announced. The NHS will contact people directly, including information about where to go to get the vaccine. The expanded flu vaccination programme is part of plans to ready the NHS – both for the risk of a second peak of coronavirus cases, and to relieve winter pressures on A+E and emergency care. Increased vaccinations will help to reduce pressure on the NHS this winter by preventing flu-sickness which can cause hospitalisation and even death. This announcement comes alongside the £3 billion for the NHS announced by the Prime Minister earlier this month to relieve winter pressures on A&E and emergency care in case of a second spike in infections. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said:
“It’s mission critical that we pull out all the stops to get ready for winter, and the Prime Minister has already announced £3 billion to protect the NHS. “We are now taking another important step to help protect the wider public by giving the flu vaccination to more people than ever before. This will be the biggest flu vaccination programme in history, and will help protect our NHS as we head into winter. “If you are eligible for a free vaccine, whether it’s for the first time or because you usually receive one, then I would urge you to get it, not just to protect yourself, but to protect the NHS and your loved ones, from flu.” The flu can be a serious disease, especially for vulnerable people or those with underlying health conditions. Eligible groups are urged to get their free vaccine every year, however with COVID-19 still in circulation this year’s campaign will be particularly vital to protect the most vulnerable and reduce the number of people needing flu treatment from the NHS. Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty said: “Flu can have serious consequences and vulnerable people can die of it. Having the vaccine protects you, and helps reduce transmission to others. “This winter more than ever, with COVID-19 still circulating, we need to help reduce all avoidable risks. Vaccinating more people will help reduce flu transmission and stop people becoming ill.” Seasonal flu is an illness that can be spread by children among themselves and to adults. Last year, the flu programme was expanded to include all primary school aged children for the first time, and this year teams will be visiting secondary schools to vaccinate children in Year 7. This will help to contain the spread of this year’s seasonal flu and not
only protect children but also vulnerable adults they may be in contact with. Dr Vanessa Saliba, Head of Flu at PHE said: “The flu vaccine is the best defence we have against what can be a serious and even deadly illness. “This winter, more people than ever will be offered a free flu vaccine. We are urging anyone who is eligible to take up the offer of vaccination. By getting the jab, you can help protect yourself, your family and the NHS – it will help save lives.” Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and NHS medical director for primary care, said: “Getting a free NHS flu vaccination is a quick and simple way that people can help to save lives and reduce pressure on our hardworking frontline staff this winter. “GPs, nurses, community pharmacists and others will be going to great lengths this year to give this vital protection to millions more people in a safe and convenient way, so when the time comes I would urge everyone invited for a flu vaccination to get it as soon as possible.” All front-line health and social care workers will also be urged to get their free vaccine to protect themselves and their patients or residents from the flu. The announcement of the flu vaccination programme expansion is part of the government’s plan to support the NHS and protect the public this winter. The funding, which is available immediately, will allow the NHS to continue using additional private hospital capacity and maintain the Nightingale hospitals until the end of March. This will provide additional capacity for COVID-19 patients should it be needed, and allow the NHS to carry out routine treatments and procedures.
'Book of You' App Helps Build Relationships for People Living with Dementia A simple life story app that has helped families at MHA care homes and retirement living schemes stay connected during lockdown is now helping build face-to-face relationships as homes start to open up for visits once more. Book of You is a reminiscence tool for people living with dementia and uses words, pictures, music and film to create a biographical digital portrait of an individual. Methodist Homes (MHA) has been trialling the app at six locations to help build a story of a resident’s life, filled with life events and memories. Families are able to add video and audio messages to the app, which have then been played to residents during lockdown, helping them stay connected with familiar faces and voices. Now the app is helping families re-connect as socially-distanced outdoor visits have started at MHA’s homes and schemes as they chat face-to-face about the memories. David Moore, MHA’s dementia lead, said: “Book of You was a fantastic tool before Covid-19, but it has become a real lifesaver for us since the virus struck. “Lockdown created a lot of anxiety for residents, their loved ones and carers.
Families are desperately worried about how their loved one will cope, whether isolation will hasten their decline, and whether they will still be recognised by the time they are allowed to visit again. “The app has kept those crucial memories, connections and relationships alive and now they are able to talk about them face-to-face during visits. “Our carers enjoy using it. It helps them to understand the rich, varied and wonderful lives lived by the people they are caring for. It brings people closer together and can help us improve how we care, because we understand who we’re caring for so much better.” Nicola Ugurbascicek, manager at MHA Aughton Park care home where it has been on trial, said: “Book of You has really helped our residents stay connected with their relatives and friends. “Memories are captured and our staff were able to sit with residents and go through the app, prompting conversations. Now outdoor visits are happening again, we can use the app to enable connections to be strengthened once again between residents and relatives.”
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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 15
Care Homes Facing Long-Term Funding Crisis Need to Act Now The high number of deaths in care homes, combined with the reluctance of families to place elderly residents in care homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, means that many in the sector are now facing considerable financial distress. This is according to Duff & Phelps, the global advisor that protects, restores and maximises value for clients. According to the latest research from the UK Local Government Association, as a result of the pandemic, the care home sector could potentially be looking at a shortfall of around £0.5 billion, with the majority of that due to a reduction in private or NHS care placements. Benjamin Wiles, Managing Director, Global Restructuring Advisory, Duff & Phelps, stated: “The financial pressures placed on providers in the care home sector as a result of COVID-19 could potentially make many otherwise viable businesses unsustainable. The long-term impact could be considerable for the sector, which is worth some £31 billion to the UK economy and employs tens of thousands of people. “Prior to the outbreak, many providers were operating with incredibly tight margins so any reduction in patient numbers is going to have a dramatic effect at a time when care homes are seeing additional cost pressures associated with personal protection equipment, staff sickness and costly agency staff.” According to some experts in the care home market, around 5% of residents lost their lives during the pandemic, which, coupled with a lack of new admissions for some homes, means that occupancy levels are unusually low for many and falling further still. This will be enough to impact even the most profitable of suppliers in the market. “With both local authorities and private individuals clearly reticent about homing the elderly in care homes unless necessary, COVID-19 is not only creating a real-time challenge but it is also storing up significant issues down the line for the sector. In other words, can our social care system continue if the beds are not there as a result of business failures?” added Wiles. “When the pandemic broke out the government pledged £600 million on infection control in care
homes. There is no doubt that this has been welcomed by many in the sector, and while that has gone some of the way to pay for items such as PPE and other COVID-19 related expenditures, what it cannot do is make up for the loss in occupancy levels. That is what provides the key to profitability and the sustainability of provision.” Local authorities across the UK have closed many care homes in the past decade, arguing that it is much cheaper to pay a private care home than to provide that care themselves. But the long-term viability of a private care home is not guaranteed, given the huge financial pressures many face today as a result of the pandemic. “Care homes are well-versed in controlling viral infections and have procedures in place to protect other residents. Their focus is on four key areas to protect residents and enable a recovery in residency levels. Firstly, the care needs of individual residents. Many care homes have reviewed their visiting policies to reduce social interaction and adhere to social distancing recommendations and are now using technology such as video conferencing for families to stay connected. Secondly, long-term infection prevention and control measures which by definition means continual investment in PPE and cleaning to ensure the care home is safer than staying at home. “Testing arrangements also need to be ramped up and maintained to deliver a thorough solution for outbreak management and ongoing surveillance. Finally, investment needs to be made in workforce training so that staff carefully adhere to safe working procedures to minimise the risk of transmission. “There is no doubt that the operating environment for care home owners and managers is challenging, but it is possible to protect your business if you act quickly. Our team of experts can independently assess the position of the business and model various scenarios to provide clarity of the financial needs of the business now and into the future. Our advisors can also assess available funding options to mitigate any funding requirements as well as more formal restructuring options should that be necessary,” Wiles concluded.
Quantum Care Teams Named Heroes of Hertfordshire Letchworth, said: “We feel very honoured to have received this certificate which recognisess the hard work and dedication from each and every member of the team. They are all heroes in my eyes and I am so proud of the love and care they have shown our residents.” Chief Executive Maria Ball said “It means so much to all of our teams to receive special recognition such as this from the Lord Lieutenant. This has been the greatest challenge that we at Quantum Care have ever faced and we are truly humbled by the sheer determination, professionalism and passion that our colleagues have shown each and every day towards the residents in our care. On an individual basis, and working as teams right across our homes, they have been nothing short of exceptional”.
Staff in Quantum Care homes across Hertfordshire were delighted to be named Heroes of Hertfordshire this week by the Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Sir Robert Voss. Each home received a letter, certificate and badge in recognition of their care and support to the older people of Hertfordshire during the Coronavirus pandemic. A letter from the Lord Lieutenant stated “It gives me great pleasure to enclose a ‘Hero of Hertfordshire’ certificate as a small token of thanks for the support you have given to the people of Hertfordshire in recent times… On behalf of the people of the county I want to thank you for truly being a Hero of Hertfordshire”. Melissa McNeilly, Home Manager of one of Quantum Care’s homes, Garden City Court in
Novellini launch BeSafe walls to help the UK return to work safely
Workplaces around the nation are preparing for when the UK can return to a kind of normality. The Novellini Group presents a solution that will help to create safe working environments that are hygienic and adaptable. The BeSafe wall is a protective device that companies with any office, desk space, trade counters, and food service areas can incorporate going forward. The primary benefit? Hygiene. Employees will feel protected with the BeSafe wall as it provides a barrier. Constructed from 6mm tempered glass, it’s easy to clean with any alcoholic disinfectant. In smaller spaces where it’s difficult to sit two meters away, the wall is a particularly helpful solution. Office teams aren’t the only ones who will be happy to see these walls put in place. BeSafe is a smart answer for all industries where contact with the public is required, such as pharmacies, retail counters, restaurants and public offices. Novellini can customise each barrier to suit the space with three versions (floor mounted, trade counter, and desks) and five different sizes. UK Sales Manager at Novellini, Stuart West says ‘We are looking to help the UK workforce where we can and these are a positive answer to those concerns about health and hygiene.’ As specialists in showers and design, Novellini are putting their skills to good use and many businesses across the UK will be pleased to find a safe and stylish solution. They are even available in several colours and glass finishes to suit the surroundings.
For more information contact Novellini UK on 01727 229922 or visit the website at www.novellini.co.uk For brochure and advice please email firstname.lastname@example.org For large projects or orders, customized solutions can be evaluated. We are available to evaluate and propose BeSafe Wall solutions specific for your protection needs.
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 17
Care Homes Should Consider a Raft of Extra Measures to Protect Residents from a Second Wave of Covid-19 Care homes should consider a raft of extra measures to protect residents from a second wave of Covid-19, according to charity chief executive David Romero McGuire PhD. Dr McGuire is chief executive of the Diagrama Foundation, a charity supporting vulnerable people through residential care, adoption and fostering. The foundation has three small care homes for adults with learning disabilities, a 48-bed care home for elderly with nursing and dementia needs and two homes for vulnerable young people. All Diagrama’s residential homes in the UK have remained free of Covid-19 (as of July 28). Dr McGuire and his team developed a range of additional measures over and above those issued as Government guidance, which he believes played a large part in keeping his homes Covid-free. “These measures and luck played a part, I would say. No matter what measures you take there is always risk, so an element of luck is involved here. But I believe there is also a lot more care homes could be doing that the Government could support us with.” Dr McGuire developed the new protocols upon advice from colleagues at Diagrama’s residential centres in Spain. With the benefit of hearing what had and hadn’t worked there, UK staff at Cabrini House in Orpington and Edensor Care Centre in Clacton-on-Sea, acted swiftly to change their practices in a number of ways. This included: • Locking down all homes to non-essential visits at the same time as Spain and Italy – almost two weeks ahead of Government guidance - with the
exception of a final end of life visit which was limited to 2 people. • Pre-empting food shortages by equipping staff with official letters to enable them to buy in bulk at the supermarket • Deep cleaning the homes twice per day - door handles, stairs handles, keys etc anything with frequent touch points. • Using diluted bleach (1%) upon the doctors’ advice to clean surfaces. (They told us it was more effective than supermarket products – which, by this point, were not available anyway.) • Staff change into clean clothes or scrubs upon arrival for work. Shoes are disinfected. • Socially distanced dining, with residents spaced out and staff eating separately • Everyone in the homes – except residents - wearing a face mask at all times. • Shift pattern changes – longer shifts to reduce the number of staff entering the homes each day. • New admission policy – no new admissions without a negative Covid-19 test. “The early lockdown was really tough for our residents with learning disabilities. Many have autism and this sudden change was difficult for them to adjust to. But wearing masks was our most challenging measure. It was not hard getting staff to wear them – they were more than willing - but getting hold of masks in the first place was impossible as all supplies had been diverted directly to the NHS. At the beginning, staff were asked to re-use them several times or they made their own. It was not ideal, but not wearing a mask was not an option. The risk was too great. “We did meet resistance from local authorities because official guidance conflicted with our measures. Initially they were not prepared to test hospital discharge patients for Covid-19 because it was not in Government guidance. There were tensions. But, after a few weeks, this was resolved and all new admissions are now tested.” Diagrama’s homes have been managing the lifting of restrictions just as cautiously. “We quickly realised a simple trip to the park was best
with new risks. We hadn’t expected so many people to be out so soon. Luckily a neighbouring school that had closed to children opened up its grounds for our use. It was a lifesaver to have somewhere our adults with learning disabilities could roam in safety.” The homes have since opened to family visits but with additional restrictions. Visits are in a designated area and restricted to 2 relatives, booked in advance to enable sanitising in between. Visitors also disinfect shoes, use masks and do not drink or eat while with there. “Everyone has been so supportive of the changes. We ask them not to have close contact where possible but some residents have no understanding of what Covid-19 is. There is no way they could understand social distancing. Are we going to refuse these residents a hug with their family? Of course not. We just do what we can to shower and sanitise afterwards.” Mr McGuire has regularly shared all protocols with local authorities to help other care providers understand what has worked for them. “The information care managers received has, from our experience, been poor. I believe there is a lot more care providers could do to support one another – by sharing best practice. We are the experts on the frontline, we know what is and what isn’t practical, and what works and doesn’t. We need to be talking to each other more to learn from one another for the sake of our residents as it is clear Covid-19 is not going away any time soon.”
Better Memory and Thinking Found to Protect Against Later Decline A team of US researchers have found that those with better memory and thinking in later life are less likely to develop problems a decade later. The researchers published their findings today (Wednesday 22 July) in the scientific journal, Neurology. The team looked at 100 volunteers who were over the age of 80 and had undertaken state-of-the-art PET brain scans. The volunteers also took memory and thinking tests at the start of the study. The researchers followed the volunteers up over 10 years later. The researchers found that people who had normal scores on the thinking and memory tests at the start of the study were less likely to develop problems at the end of the study. This was the case even if
these individuals had a build-up of the hallmark Alzheimer’s protein amyloid in their brains. The team also found that people with a gene associated with a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s disease had less amyloid build-up than people without the gene. Dr Rosa Sancho, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “Although age is the largest risk factor for dementia, the condition is not an inevitable part of getting older. Age, genetics and lifestyle all play a role in our risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s. “While this study showed that a genetic factor was the best predictor of who would develop biological signs of Alzheimer’s, those who
had better memory and thinking skills at the start of the study were least likely to experience cognitive decline. “This research in the very oldest people highlights the importance of cognitive reserve, a type of resilience that allows people with Alzheimer’s processes underway in the brain to function for longer before showing dementia symptoms. “While there’s no sure fire way to prevent dementia there are things we can do to look after our brain throughout life. These include not smoking, controlling blood pressure and cholesterol, only drinking within recommended guidelines, eating a balanced diet, and staying both physically and mentally active.”
PAGE 18 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
Keeping Eyes Firmly on the Kitchen
By Jason Webb, director, Electronic Temperature Instruments
According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), between the period 2 March to 12 June 2020 there were 66,112 deaths of care home residents. Of these, 19,394 were COVID-19 related. The impact for the sector has been devastating. This is in addition to the day to day pressures of catering to residents’ requirements whilst keeping them, staff, and visitors safe. As we enter the next phase of lockdown, those operating in the sector will be on high alert to ensure all health and safety standards are met. This include monitoring the critical ambient temperature of food under chilled and frozen storage conditions. Overfilling refrigerators and cool rooms with produce reduces the air flow and leads to hot spots, where bacteria can flourish even if you think you have the right temperature. To combat this, caterers should keep an inventory of how much of their stock needs to be refrigerated and use the latest technology to back temperature recordings every few hours so that it never goes above critical limits. Monitoring both air and core temperature in refrigeration units allows care home catering to install early alert systems that ensures they stay one step ahead. Older people have weaker immune systems, therefore are more prone to food poisoning as they find it harder to fight infections. It’s critical that care providers monitor their kitchens and introduce proactive steps in catering operations to keep the organisation free from health & safety dangers.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF KITCHEN OPERATORS Food operators have a duty of care to ensure no cross-contact or contamination takes place. They must prevent any items that come into contact with food transferring anything onto the food substance itself. Cross-contamination can endanger customers, sometimes in extreme cases. It occurs when bacteria or other potentially harmful micro-organisms are unintentionally transferred from one place to another – in this case,
from one food item to another. The ability to measure temperatures over various ranges throughout the food supply process is essential. Legislation dictates that certain operations should be conducted within legally set temperature parameters. This is dictated by a Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) plan and may include temperatures relating to delivery, pre-cooking storage, or re-heating. Staff should be well-trained with suitable measures in place to protect a business, its workforce, and its customers. Ongoing reviews of Food Safety Management Systems to identify any risks is paramount.
SPEED IF OF THE ESSENCE If something is amiss, then it’s important to know sooner rather than later. Systems should be put in place ensuring all food temperature recordings from fridges and freezers are backed up regularly. Every few hours live data and immediate alerts can be received if temperatures go above critical limits. This ensures more accurate food temperature controls which improves safety and reduces food spoilage. Real time temperature monitoring streamlines processes and procedures enabling a care home’s catering facility to act immediately should any unforeseen issues arise. This can be done via WIFI loggers which transmits data via the cloud and stores locally on PCs and other devices. The data is then passed through a WIFI router to a computer regardless of where the user is based at that particular time. It then stays locally on a hard drive so the user can access real, live temperature monitoring data wherever they are in the world. Any care home catering facility must adhere to food safety standards and regulations. Data loggers can play a crucial role. This year’s health crisis has highlighted the strain on our already stretched healthcare services and the social care sector. The last thing anyone needs is a wave of serious food poisoning cases, which are frequently caused by bacteria from foods which have been incorrectly stored, handled and prepared.
Environmental Science Limited (ESL) Restructures its Business to Launch Unique and Effective Palm Tree Foaming Hand Sanitisers Environmental Science Ltd based in March, Cambridgeshire was originally set up in 1994 and has focused primarily on the authoring of Safety ata and Workplace Activity Safety Protection (WASP) Sheets, identifying chemical hazards and providing on-site COSHH monitoring, LEV testing and risk assessment services. This core activity will continue, however due partly to the changed circumstances brought about by Covid-19, the company has made the decision to significantly expand and restructure the business. ESL has built and established trusted relationships within the UK chemical industry over the last 25 years, therefore it is a natural progression for the business to move
into the development, manufacture, and distribution of hygiene products. These will include hand sanitisers, sprays, medicated soaps, surface and floor wipes and disinfectants. To facilitate these new product lines, a new business entity is being created with the name “Environmental Science Hygiene Ltd”, and the existing company is renamed as “Environmental Science Group”. Their new website is: www.envsciencegroup.com One factor behind the change of direction for the business is that some products are being very hastily marketed during this pandemic; therefore they do not perform as efficiently as may be implied. By contrast, the team at
Manufactured in the UK
Celebrating 40 years
Environmental Science are committed to producing high quality products that are both safe and effective. They also feel it is important to provide complete transparency by supplying the relevant GHS Safety Data Sheets, Product Labels, Product Information Sheets, etc. Our Palm Tree Foaming Hand Sanitiser is unique and different from other current products for the following reasons: • The alcohol is naturally sourced and distilled from the sap of palm trees. • The palm trees are not damaged in the extraction process, so the product is both sustainable and eco-friendly. • Unlike most other sources of Ethanol, by tapping into an existing resource it means that valuable agricultural land can be used for food production instead. • The foaming action is preferred by the healthcare sector over gel-based products. • The alcohol content is in excess of 60% as recommended by the World Health Organisation. • Conforms to the European Standard EN1276. For further information, please contact: Tel: +44 (0) 1354 653 222 Email: email@example.com Web: www.envsciencegroup.com
Freephone: 0800 917 7943 www.euroservice-uk.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Introducing the new HYGIEIA range In the past few weeks the design team at Euroservice have been focussing on the needs of the care sector taking into account the enormous pressures faced over the past few months. Elegant and practical new designs have emerged from market research and the new HYGIEIA service trolleys have been created to combine hygiene and social distancing with style and elegance. The new HYGIEIA trolleys are an attractive and practical alternative to clinical aluminium trolleys given that antibacterial spray can be used freely to sanitise them. Moreover, when not in use the attractive trolleys can be used as a vending trolley, selling personal care products to residents or snacks/pastries to visitors. Your lovely trolley could do so much for you and your residents! Get in touch with our friendly sales team and we will be happy to help find a trolley to meet your needs.
Visit the website at euroservice-uk.com to see the full range.
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 19
Care Providers Should Encourage Staff and Service Users To Apply To EU Settlement Scheme Most EU citizens need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) to ensure they are able to continue to live, work and access funding and services in the UK after 30 June 2021. EU citizens are important to care providers both as staff and clients. While recent data indicates a high level of applications to the Scheme, the Care Provider Alliance (CPA) is calling on all social care organisations to ensure their staff and people who use their services are aware of the EUSS and how to apply. The CPA, which represents the ten leading care provider trade associations in England, has today (24 July 2020) published guidance for adult social care providers on the EUSS. Speaking about the launch for the guidance, CPA Chair, Lisa Lenton said: “EU care workers, people who use services and families are a vital part of the care sector. We need them to feel secure and confident in remaining in the UK after the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. “While care providers are not legally obliged to check if people have applied to the scheme, the CPA strongly recommends that they direct people to information on the EU Settlement Scheme, and encourage them to apply where appropriate. COVID-19 has resulted in some delays to applications, so again, it is better to apply as soon as possible. Our new guidance provides all the details needed, and we will be updating our information on a regular basis.”
The guidance is available on the CPA website at https://careprovideralliance.org.uk/euss-guidance-for-care-providers The CPA recommends that care providers: • review their business continuity plans to ensure it covers the EU Settlement Scheme and implications for their workforce and people who use their services. • assess how many members of staff and people who use their service might be affected by the EU Settlement Scheme. They will need to understand if they’re likely to leave the UK before 30 June 2021 or if they might need extra support to apply to the scheme, and what actions care providers can take to manage the implications and reduce any risks. • ensure relevant staff, people using services and their next-of-kin or advocates, are aware of the EU Settlement Scheme and how to apply. • encourage and support staff and others to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme before 30 June 2021. • provide information and reassurance to staff, those using services and their family or friends. • ensure staff can direct people using services and carers to information about the EU Settlement Scheme, but ensure they don’t act as formal advisers on the issues or process. • allocate staff time and resources to the issue. This will vary depending on the scale and type of the organisation. Staff with lead responsibility for workforce contingency planning and engagement with people who use services may be the most relevant leads on the EU Settlement Scheme.
Kick in the Teeth for Care Home Covid Heroes in Wales Social care providers in Wales have called low pay for carers and nurses a “national disgrace” following public sector pay rises in other areas. According to Care Forum Wales, which represents 500 care homes and domiciliary care companies, it was a “kick in the teeth” for the frontline heroes who put their lives on the line during the coronavirus pandemic. The fact that they were being ignored while almost 900,000 public sector workers, including teachers and doctors, were getting above inflation pay rises was galling. In Wales, pay rates are effectively determined by local councils who set the level of fees care homes and domiciliary care companies receive. As a result, say Care Forum Wales, wage levels have been unfairly suppressed by the local authorities who have managed the budgets for 25 years. Among those who hit out was Glyn Williams, owner of the Gwyddfor Care Home, in Bodedern on Anglesey. He said: “ “It’s a national disgrace. Right from the word go our care workforce have been left in no man’s land – not just on the front line but in no man’s land. “There was a big fanfare from the Welsh Government about social
care staff getting a £500 bonus but they haven’t seen a penny yet. “Now, they hear that they’re not deemed worthy of a pay rise like other key workers, even though they have put their own lives on the line protecting the vulnerable people they provide care for. It’s a real kick in the teeth. “Some don’t even know if they’ve got jobs in six months’ time with the care sector having to take back all the staff who’ve been on furlough or shielding. “A lot of care homes have taken on staff to fill those posts and we have a lot of wonderful trainees who want a career in care and we’re investing in them as best we can. What are we supposed to do with them now? “The fact that the social care workforce isn’t getting a pay rise in the same way as the other key workers is a kick in teeth for people we should be treating as the national treasures they are. “The authorities were shamed into publicly recognising the magnificent efforts of social care staff and they were eventually included in the clap for carers. “That feels very hollow now. The support from the public has been absolutely amazing but it’s shameful the UK and Welsh governments don’t want to show their appreciation in more practical way with the financial reward that these Covid heroes deserve.”
Mario Kreft MBE, the chair of Care Forum Wales, said: “The social care sector is of national strategic importance. “As the First Minister, Mark Drakeford, says it is the invisible scaffolding that supports the NHS. “Surely now we have got to recognise the care sector and particularly social care workers for the incredible value they provide for our communities and our society. “Like the other key workers like teachers and police officers, social care workers deserve an above-inflation pay rise. “We have got to make sure that working in social care is a career of the highest value. “Most of the people in care homes in Wales are publicly funded by local authorities. “After 25 years of local authorities managing the market, we have a very fragile sector that was in a critical state even before the coronavirus pandemic struck. “As far as they have been concerned, it’s always been about cost rather than value. “This is the time for social care to be put on a pedestal alongside the NHS because they are symbiotic – they cannot work without each other. “People working in social care need to be rewarded like a proper profession instead of being treated like Oliver Twist asking for more gruel.”
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Research Reveals The Barriers and Benefits to Technology by Social Care Providers During Covid-19 New research has been published revealing the latest data and information on how social care providers have been using technology during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Impact of Technology in Adult Social Care Provider Services report published by Digital Social Care, NHSX and the Institute of Public Care at Oxford Brookes University, highlights the benefits and barriers providers in England have been experiencing when it comes to using technology. A collaborative 8-week research project was undertaken by the three organisations using data from Digital Social Care’s helpline. Further indepth interviews were also conducted to better understand the experiences of providers. The research was undertaken between 20 April and 19 June 2020, at the height of the pandemic. During this time Digital Social Care’s helpline was contacted by 176 people, the majority (55%) were from residential care, with 23% from homecare and the rest from other services such as commissioning organisations, community care and supported living. Key findings from the report include: • Despite over 70% of care home providers in some regions having registered with NHSmail, only a maximum of two thirds are using their accounts. • Video conferencing is being widely used with all providers, with the three main drivers being GPs requiring this for virtual consultations, contact
between clients and family, and internal communication between dispersed staff. • Using equipment is a challenge for providers with many saying that it’s difficult to navigate the best options to respond to the needs of the people they support, themselves and other parties in the system. • There is a mixed and inconsistent picture on the use of remote monitoring, care management systems and digital solutions, with some providers using a range of digital tools and others who are still very paper-based. • The Capacity Tracker is being used by nearly all care homes but wasn’t perceived by providers as of a benefit to them. • Attend Anywhere, the NHS-approved video conferencing and virtual consultation tool, hasn’t been used by providers working with secondary care. Confidence with digital skills, lack of strategic technical guidance, data protection and cyber security were all identified by providers as barriers to their uptake of technology. Fiona Richardson, Assistant Director of the Institute of Public Care at Oxford Brookes University, said: “At this extremely stressful time on the frontline of coronavirus care, we want to help care service providers who are working with new technology, perhaps for the first time. “The care sector needs support to deliver its essential work and this research could be an important driver in enabling us to harness all of the power that technology and digital innovations offer us.” Vic Rayner, Executive Director of National Care Forum and Board
Member of Digital Social Care, said: “Care providers have rapidly adopted new technologies to adapt ways of working during this difficult period. This research shows the many benefits technology can offer to staff and the people they support. It is vital that we learn from the innovative approaches developed as part of the Covid-19 response.” The use of technology for social care providers has changed rapidly since the Covid-19 pandemic. Information governance compliance requirements have been temporarily relaxed and a new quick process to give care providers free access to NHSmail and Microsoft Teams has been set up. Free digital tools have also been made available and all care homes have been asked to start using the Capacity Tracker as a priority. The report contains a number of recommendations needed to ensure the sector’s use of technology grows and details how providers can be supported. To read the full report please visit https://ipc.brookes.ac.uk/publications/Technology_Action_Research.ht ml Providers are being encouraged to contact Digital Social Care’s helpline if they would like support to use technology or have questions to ask. The helpline is open between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday by calling 0208 133 3430 or by email on email@example.com
94-Year-Old Crossword Queen Completes 26 Crosswords In 26 Days for Local Charity my mum that SNAP were doing a 2.6 challenge back in April so we came up with the idea of doing 26 crosswords which have been very challenging when my mum is not hearing the clues correctly, but also very amusing! My mum wanted to help raise funds for SNAP by doing 26 crosswords over the telephone with myself and my sister Kate. It has definitely been a challenge as my mum is hard of hearing!! However, my mum is a Crossword Queen!!” As a ‘Crossword Queen’, Ann completed the 2.6 challenge in no time at all with the help of her daughters and raised an incredible £226. Ann was very happy to have been able to help the charity that has supported her Grandson and family. She was also delighted to receive a certificate from SNAP in recognition of the amount raised. Ann’s daughter received a lovely email to thank the family for fundraising, from the charity’s Director of Family Services Karen Boath, “I’m pleased to confirm we received the very generous £226 raised by your incredible mum’s 2.6 challenge. Please pass on our sincerest thanks to Ann for choosing to get involved in the 2.6 challenge and raising this fantastic donation for SNAP. We hope she enjoyed completing all those puzzles, I can’t believe she managed to do 26 so fast.” Touched by the support of its wonderful supporters like Ann and her family, the charity is delighted that the grand total of funds raised so far throughout the challenge is over £15,000! Brentwood Care Centre, where Ann is a resident, was also impressed by Ann’s dedication and efforts, and the Residential Dementia care home agreed to match the amount raised by Ann so will be donating an additional £226 in recognition of Ann’s contributions to such a worthy cause.
When 94-year-old Ann found out that local Brentwood Charity SNAP (Special Needs and Parents) was taking part in the 2.6 challenge whereby individuals complete a fun activity of their choice set around the numbers 2.6 or 26 (in honour of the 40th anniversary of the London Marathon), she was inspired to combine a hobby of a lifetime with fundraising for a cause which is close to both her heart and to her family, and so set herself the challenge to complete 26 crossword puzzles in 26 days. Since moving in to Brentwood Care Centre almost two and a half years ago, Ann has enjoyed keeping up with her lifetime love of crosswords – she particularly likes the one from the Daily Mirror. Poor eyesight, hearing and dexterity difficulties haven’t stopped Ann from enjoying her regular crosswords as she has simply enlisted her daughters, Maggie and Kate, in reading out the clues for Ann to then provide the answers during their visits. Since the Covid-19 lockdown began, Activity Co-ordinators Alison and Michelle at the home in Pilgrims Hatch have helped Ann continue her crossword conundrums with her daughters through numerous phone calls and FaceTime chats, and so when Maggie told Ann in April that SNAP would be participating in the 2.6 challenge, she was keen to give back by getting involved too – it wouldn’t be the first time she’s helped raise funds for SNAP either having donated all of her 90th birthday money to the local charity. Ann’s daughter Maggie shared the inspiration for Ann’s fundraising efforts, “SNAP have been a great support to our family over the years and have helped us with our son who has autism, offering music therapy, counselling and advice. I told
Brunelcare Resident Turns 106-Years-Old Dora Banfield, a resident at Brunelcare’s Deerhurst Care Home located in Speedwell, turned 106-years-old at the beginning of July. Dora has been a resident with Brunelcare for two-years and celebrated her milestone with an outdoor garden visit from her daughter, Mary. Dora was born in 1914 and has lived through two World Wars. She was born in Kent and educated in Essex, she lived for 29-years in Taunton and now calls Bristol and Brunelcare’s Deerhurst Care Home, her home. Dora was brought up on a farm and later was in the Land Army, she became a teacher, an artist and had a book published when she was 93 years old all about how to be an artist. Dora has a total of three children, eight grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. Deerhurst Care Home was the first of Brunelcare’s care homes to offer outdoor, socially distant garden visits to resident family and friends. As of July 1st, loved ones can now visit on a one-on-one basis for 30 minute
meeting slots across all five of Brunelcare Care Homes. Mary said: “I was so pleased to see Mum on her birthday, what a special time we had! I can hardly believe we have a Mum who is 106-years-old! I thought she looked very well. I wanted to thank everyone at Deerhurst Care Home for making her birthday such a special occasion. The awning was a cosy place to sit and the decorations were bright and cheerful. Deerhurst Care Home really did go above and beyond to accommodate us and ensure mum had a special day.” Oona Goldsworthy, Brunelcare CEO said: “We are so thrilled we could celebrate Dora’s special day with her and her family. Our Deerhurst care home really did pull out all the stops to ensure Dora and her family had the most magical day as possible during these unprecedented times. We have extraordinary people giving extraordinary care across our five care homes.”
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Government Adviser Dismisses PM’s Claim Care Homes To Blame For Coronavirus Deaths Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty has rebutted Boris Johnson’s comments blaming care homes for coronavirus deaths saying his “enthusiasm for blaming people for anything is zero”. The prime minister caused consternation within the sector when he said during a recent visit to Yorkshire “we discovered too many care homes didn’t really follow the procedures in the way that they could have”, Nadra Ahmed, chair of the National Care Association, called his comments a “slap across the face of social care” and said the prime minister needed to apologise and retract his statement. Appearing at the Health and Social Care Committee, Professor Whitty said that main risks in social care settings were not considered early on in the pandemic, including staff working in various residences and those not paid sick leave. In a sometimes heated exchange with the committee chair and former health secretary Jeremy Hunt, professor Whitty stated that it was evident the UK and other countries around the world had “not handled this
well” in relation to issues in social care settings. During the committee session, Professor Whitty was pushed on comments from prime minister, appearing to blame care homes for failing to follow proper procedures. Asked whether care home deaths were caused by them not following procedure, he said: “First of all my enthusiasm for blaming people for anything is zero. That is absolutely not the way you deal with any kind of situation in health care or social care – that’s across the board. That would be my starting point.” He continued: “I think it is clear that every country that has a care sector has not handled this well. The UK is one country that has not handled this well in terms of issues in social care, but the same is true, as previous speakers said, the numbers are very similar, or even higher, in terms of proportions of deaths in almost every country you look at this.” Professor Whitty added: “This across the board this has been a major problem. Some of this I think comes from the fact we had not recognised what are in retrospect obvious but were not obvious points early on. “For example, the fact that people working in multiple homes, people who were not paid sick leave – that is a clear risk. These were major risks in social care settings. There are a lot of things we have learnt that we can now do a lot better in social care and I don’t think any of us will look back at what happened in social care and say the ideal advice was given and this was the fault of anyone.” In June Professor John Edmunds, a member of SAGE, said that not going into lockdown sooner had cost “a lot of lives” while his former colleague Prof Neil Ferguson claimed Covid deaths could have been halved.
New Resources for Care Workers With restrictions on visiting care homes only just beginning to ease a new range of booklets has been published to equip care staff to offer emotional and spiritual care. Care workers are not only on the front line in the fight against Covid-19 but often the only people there to provide spiritual care and support to those they care for. So, to support carers and to enable churches to minister to care homes despite the visiting bans, BRF (The Bible Reading Fellowship) has published five booklets, drawing on the expertise of Anna Chaplains to Older People across the country. www.annachaplaincy.org.uk Pioneer and founder of Anna Chaplaincy, the former broadcaster Debbie Thrower, explains: ‘It was the idea of Anna Chaplaincy Lead for Wales, the Revd Sally Rees. She leads teams of pastoral workers visiting and worshipping with residents in and around Crickhowell. So concerned was she for the welfare of staff and residents her teams were no longer able to reach that she suggested BRF put together practical guides specifically for care staff.’ ‘I thought it was a great idea and offered to write one on spiritual care for those nearing the end of life. We enlisted the help of one of
our Anna Chaplaincy network in Birmingham, Catriona Foster, who is the Pastor for Older People in Harborne, to write a guide to worshipping with a group of residents, and Sally wrote the other three titles.’ The aim of the new guides is to give carers the confidence and skills to enable those in their care not only to cope emotionally and spiritually but even to thrive, despite challenging circumstances. The five titles are: – How to take care of yourself in stressful times – How to help someone spiritually towards the end of life – How to worship with a group of residents – How to worship with individuals in your care – How to have a memorial service at home when you are unable to attend the funeral Each one explains spiritual care in simple terms for staff in residential homes (plus those working for domiciliary agencies and providing social care more widely). They have been road tested by an Anna Chaplain who was a care home manager to ensure the tone and information is just right, and that they remain relevant beyond the health crisis. Sample pages are available to browse (see attached). Some churches are buying them in bulk and giving them as gifts to key workers. Each copy is £2.50, or they come in a pack of five copies of each title (or five copies of a single title) at the discounted price of £10. To find out more visit https://www.brfonline.org.uk/collections/anna-chaplaincy-carers-guides email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01865 319700. Anna Chaplaincy is growing fast as a way of supporting men and women in their later years, and their carers. Chaplains draw alongside people of strong, little or no faith. Some are in multi-faith settings. The
chaplains (lay and ordained) come from many different denominations. Each is authorised by and accountable to their own church or group of Churches Together. Anna Chaplaincy is a trademarked name and every new - DBSchecked - recruit is subject to a Head Licence agreement with BRF. ‘There are now almost 150 members of the network, men as well as women,’ said Debbie, ‘and people are contacting us all the time either to explore their own vocation to this work with older people in the community or to try and get Anna Chaplaincy established where they live. We had more than 30 commissioned in one day in the North-East of England earlier this year!’ Debbie’s blog posts www.annachaplaincy.org.uk/blog are attracting a wide audience as she provides ideas for people wanting to know how to continue ministry to those most isolated as a result of the pandemic. Zoom conference calls on resources are attracting up to 100 people. A recent report from the Allchurches Trust, ‘Hope Beyond’, shows what most worries churches in the wake of the pandemic is loneliness, social isolation and adult mental health and well-being. ‘Anna Chaplaincy speaks into these most pressing topical concerns,’ says Debbie, ‘and we can prove we’re delivering on the ground, with our network reaching about 25,000 people a month before lockdown. Yet there’s so much more still to do.’
183 Years of Birthday Celebrations at Cheshire Care Home Two Residents at Primrose House care home in Haslington share the same birthday, so staff planned something special to celebrate. This year, residents Hilda Farrington and Peggy Dickinson have accrued a total of 183 years between them. Incredibly, these two wonderful ladies have both lived through World War 2, the Queen’s coronation, as well as England winning the World Cup. Due to many people in care homes unable to celebrate special events properly with their families and friends because of government restrictions, residents and staff all got together on 23rd July to celebrate Hilda’s 87th birthday and Peggy’s 96th birthday. Hilda’s family came to the home for a window
visit and watched as she opened all her presents. Peggy’s family also arrived for a window visit and had deliveries of flowers and chocolate throughout the day. In the afternoon, the home had a sing-a-long with other residents which ended with a ‘Happy Birthday’ song for both ladies; topped with blowing out the candles on the cake. Hilda commented that she enjoyed her birthday and had a big smile on her face all day. Peggy spoke about seeing her family and how lovely it was to be able to have a window visit. Home Manager, Alison Brown, remarked, “It was so lovely to see all of the Residents joining in with the birthday celebrations, we had a wonderful day!”
Covid19: Accelerating the Use of Digital Technology in Healthcare As this crisis impacts every part of the health sector, significant vulnerabilities are being exposed. The NHS ‘digital revolution’ has long been touted as the key to futureproofing both Social Care and our health service in the face of increasing patient demand. That demand has now reached unprecedented levels and seems unlikely ever to revert to previous trends; against that background; there is an urgent requirement to move quickly to realise the opportunities which are available from digital technology. It is no longer an interesting speculation; it is an essential requirement to support staff and save lives. (Rt Hon Stephen Dorrell)
USING TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY Poor efficiencies in many areas of the sector are caused by the lack of investment in technology.
Technology will improve the way your staff carry out tasks by either speed up existing processes or allowing new, more flexible and accurate ways of carrying out a job or process which will in turn enables live real time management information. Would you expect to check out of a hotel with an invoice and extras raised in Word or Excel so why do many operators still use this method when invoic-
ing? How many industries with shift workers rely on manual payroll processing outside the care sector? Repeatable systems should harness the power of technology to cut back the massive waste of man hours spent processing and checking manual tasks. In order to work out the best technology for your needs, you should assess your current systems against your requirements. Think about what inefficiencies exist in your homes and how you could: 1. Capture relevant information, such as resident/staff details, in a simple, time-efficient way. 2. Manage your documents to ensure that information is dealt with logically. 3. Avoid duplication at all costs; completing handwritten timesheets which then need to be manually inputted into payroll is a massive, unnecessary waste of time & manpower. 4. Address technological obstacles. The perception that your staffs are not IT literate is out of date; most people own a smart phone so yes they are! See www.fusion4care.com for details or see the advert on page 23.
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Webinar to Launch 0% VAT Campaign for Social Care A consortium of home care providers has united to lobby the government for a change to the sector’s current VAT regime, which they say is punitive. All home care providers are being invited to attend a webinar on Thursday 6th August where the issues facing the sector and plans for the lobbying campaign will be outlined. Founding consortium members are hoping other providers will join them in the campaign. At the start of the pandemic CEOs, Ken Deary, Right at Home and Martin Jones, Home Instead Senior Care conceived the idea for the consortium when VAT charges on PPE brought into sharp focus the inequity of social care’s VAT status. Goods and services provided by regulated social care organisations are exempt from VAT, meaning that they do not charge VAT on their services. However, their current VAT status means they cannot reclaim VAT on expenses. The group want social care services to become zero-rated for VAT. Commenting on this, Deary said, “Home care providers are at the front line, providing an invaluable service to some of the most vulnerable in our society. We are a silent partner to the NHS, playing a key role in alleviating pressure on hospital beds by keeping people safe and well in their own homes. “Our sector is made up of many small, independent operators. Costs go up year and year and we operate under this punitive VAT regime that sees margins squeezed. “Social care providers operate in a highly-regulated sector and as such there are many associated costs of running a business. Regulatory fees, training, office overheads to name but a few. And we were already facing increased financial pressures, even before COVID-19 with the cost of pension provision, National Living Wage increases to name but a few.” The sector welcomed the temporary change to the VAT status of PPE during the pandemic but says it needs
to see a permanent change to the sector’s status. Speaking about this and how any savings would be spent, Jones said, “Whilst we welcomed the temporary suspension of VAT on PPE which has been a huge help, we are urging the government to go a step further and make a wholesale change that will benefit clients and carers alike. “As a sector we are really keen to reinvest any savings into delivering an even better service for our clients and to better support our carers. “This would be through increasing rates of pay to carers, additional training opportunities, allowing carers to spend more time with their clients for those providers who are forced into delivering shorter duration calls. “Providers would have more flexibility to invest in technology to support clients with items such as Raizer chairs, for example, becoming more commonplace.” The consortium argues that they should operate under the same VAT regime as mobility aid retailers, which serve practically the same client base, who are already zero rated. In closing, Deary said, “The cost to the Treasury to change social care to zero rated would be relatively small annually, but it would make a significant contribution to keeping financially under pressure social care providers in business, both in the short and long term for the huge benefit of their clients, carers and, let’s not forget, the NHS.” Founding members of the lobby group are Ken Deary (Right at Home UK), Martin Jones (Home Instead Senior Care UK), Michelle Fenwick (Heritage Healthcare), Lise Fyfe (Caremark), Alex Green (Radfield Homecare), Wayne Smith (Bluebird Care) and Yvonne Thomlinson (Kare Plus). They will all be presenting at the webinar. For more information on the webinar and to register your place, please visit https://tinyurl.com/y3u5l6c3 or contact email@example.com
Scottish Company Launches Facial Recognition And Thermal Imaging For Care Homes
A Scottish company has unveiled an attendance ‘track and trace system’ that uses facial recognition and thermal imaging to detect people with high temperatures and infection which will mean better safe-
guarding of Care Home staff and patients against Covid-19 infection The technology was developed by Reddy Punna, the CEO of Edinburgh-based enterprise technology specialist Purview Services and himself a Covid-19 survivor, having been diagnosed the virus on a business trip to India. The system is capable of scanning 30 people per second and will indicate those at higher risk of Covid19 infection, so that they are swiftly detected and contained as they enter the Care Home. Currently unable to return to Scotland, Reddy focused on developing the facial recognition and thermal imaging technology whilst in India. He comments; "Immediate protection from The Covid-19 pandemic requires compliance with test, trace isolate and protection strategies and we’ve done this through the development of our optical attendance and access system.
The facial recognition and thermal imaging system can detect people’s temperature, the presence of a face mask and social distancing as they walk past the scanning technology at a rate of up to 30 per second and within a range field depth of 9 metres. Those entering a Care Home with a raised temperature can be identified and then diverted to be helped by staff to stop any potential spread of Covid-19. Containment through an attendance and access system with zero contact and temperature measurement can be a key to avoiding easy spread of the virus that can take place with a biometric access system.” Purview’s Facial Recognition and Thermal Imaging technology allows the system to check and enable access (e.g. light goes green from red). For example, if there is a temperature alert on the system, a person can be re-checked with handheld thermal imaging. The reading can then be conveyed to the individual and they would then be advised accordingly. The
WISHING YOU DIDN’T KEEP PAPER RECORDS? S STAFF TAFF AF MANAGEMENT MANAGEMENT R otas, Timesheets & Payroll Payroll Rotas, RESIDENTS & SER VICE USERS SERVICE In voicing, Enquiries & Occupancy Invoicing, C ARE PL ANS CARE PLANS As sses s sments, Dail es, Assessments, Dailyy Not Notes, Task T askk Management Manag M ag g gement &C are Planning Care FUSION CAN CAN A INS INSTALL TALL AL LL AND TR TRAIN T AIN YOU AND YOUR YOUR S TAFF REMO TEL LY YOU STAFF REMOTELY WITH C ONTINUOUS AND REASSURING WITH CONTINUOUS R OUND THE CL OCK SUPPOR T. ROUND CLOCK SUPPORT.
reading can also trigger the tracing process to find who the identified person has been in contact with. The strategy is to have free flowing footfall with access control , allowing people to move without congestion and being hampered by unnecessary delay. With little sign of stability in the rise of Covid-19 infection around the world, the public needs assurance that risk of infection in crowd management can be completely minimised and controlled immediately when a case is flagged by the facial recognition and thermal imaging software. As measures are being gradually relaxed, the public is mindful that the spread of Covid-19 is yet to be fully contained and until there is a wholesale decrease in infection rates, facial recognition and thermal imaging will give assurances to businesses that this type of technology can further reduce infection rates. Visit www.purviewservices.com today for further information.
As the pandemic crisis hits, with self-isolation and home working much greater, the digital revolution has, for most, future proofed “business as usual” But we know a large percentage of social care providers are not so lucky!
NOW MORE MOR RE THAN EVER THE USE OF DIGITAL DIGITAL TECHNOL NOLOGY IN SOCIAL CARE TECHNOLOGY CARE IS PRO PROVING VING IT ITS S WEIGHT IN GOLD GOLD.. The demands yyou Th ou are are no now w facing ar aree unprecedented; unprecedented; maintaining intaining levels l vels le ls of ccare are and a staff staff,, the safety and w d thosee yyou ou ccare are for is your yourr maximum priority rity. DIGITA AL wellbeing ellbeing of those who w work ork for yyou, ou, and priority. DIGITAL TECHNOL OGY CAN CAN MAKE THIS SO MUCH EASIER. SIER R. TECHNOLOGY EASIER Vital information all in one plac e, in the cloud, rremotely em motely ac cessible to eevery very member of staff who needs place, accessible it. There There is an urgent urgent rrequirement equirement to move move quickly are available available from from uickly ly to realise r opportunities that are the opportunities digital technology technology..
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14 People Are “Wiped Out” Financially by Care Bills Each Day says Age UK New analysis from Age UK has found that every day, fourteen people exhaust their assets paying for care[i] This finding is published a year on from the Prime Minister’s statement on the steps of No 10 Downing Street that he would fix social care and ensure no one in future would have to sell their home to fund help they cannot live without. In England in 2018/19, the latest year for which figures are available, 5190 people were classified as 'selffunders with depleted funds'[ii] – in other words people who had run down their savings and assets until they had virtually nothing left, because of having to pay for care. This represents a sharp increase of more than a third (37%) [iii]in the numbers who find themselves in this terrible position, compared to the previous year.[iv] In the absence of social care reform and of a Government backed system through which we can all share the financial risk of developing a need for care, significant numbers of unlucky older people and their families are being forced to spend staggering amounts for support that is essential for them to carry on living. In England, 167,000[v] older people and their families now have to fund their own care because they do not meet the brutal means-test that qualifies you for free or subsidised support. They spent more than £7 billion (£7,390,084,000) on care during the 12 months since the Prime Minister took office.[vi] These revelations come at the same time as the Charity stages a ‘virtual hand in’ of its petition calling on the Government to stand by its commitment to fix social care and make it free at the point of use, fair and available for everyone who needs it. The petition was signed by 109,306 people before the pandemic struck. Alongside the petition there will be recordings of messages from older people who need and provide care about how extremely difficult the last year has been for them, before as well as during the pandemic, and why change is so desperately needed. Age UK is calling on the Government to resolve the severe underfunding that afflicted social care even before the pandemic arrived and which meant it was in no position to stand up to Covid-19 when it struck. Before the pandemic it was widely agreed that the social care system needed around £8 billion over 2019/20-2020/21[vii] just to return quality and access to levels in 2009/10, which in themselves were not all that great. In addition, councils say that they now need an extra £6 billion in
order to meet the extra costs caused by Covid-19. Without further Government investment of this order councils say they will be forced to make cuts to social care this autumn, at a time when there are enormous concerns about managing a possible ‘second wave’ of the pandemic plus the usual pressures caused by the cold weather and seasonal flu. Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director for Age UK said: “Chronic underfunding put social care on its knees before Covid-19 came roaring in so it was in no position to withstand the battering the virus dealt out. Tragically, there have been an estimated 30,000 excess deaths of older people living in care homes during the pandemic,[viii] a shocking number that shames us all. “When he became Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised to fix social care and make sure no one would have to sell their home to pay for it. Now, after all the loss and suffering caused by the pandemic it is more important than ever that he follows through. “With 14 people a day being ruined due to sky high care bills and self-funders spending more than £7 billion on care in a year it’s clear that the unlucky individuals who need care face far too high a price. The obvious solution is for us all to share the risk of developing care needs by paying into a national fund, like we do with the NHS. “More than a hundred thousand members of the public signed our petition before the pandemic, calling on the Government to act, and it’s a fair bet that if we ran the same exercise now there would be even more support. Public awareness of what care does and why it matters has been greatly raised during the pandemic, as has admiration for the work paid care staff do – often for only poverty pay.” “As part of a necessary process of national atonement so far as social care is concerned it’s time for a new deal which transforms it into the decent, reliable public service we are all entitled to expect, with care staff getting a fair return for their labours. Nothing can bring back all those older people living in care homes whose lives were so sadly cut short by the virus but at least we can say ‘never again’ and show we really mean it, by agreeing the funding and reforms that in all honesty we should have had more than a decade ago.”
North Yorkshire Care Home Celebrates Community with Lockdown Artwork The orangery wall at The Hall care home in Thornton-le-Dale has been decorated with a new community painting thanks to help from a local artist. The artwork, which has been named ‘The Tree of Life,’ was created by June Appleton, the home’s visiting artist, with a helping-hand from residents and staff at the North Yorkshire care home. The painting depicts a tree in a field with leaves and blossom growing on its branches. It was painted by June, with finishing touches supplied by the residents and staff at The Hall. Using finger-painting techniques, residents added their fingerprints to the painting, forming pink blossom on the tree’s branches. Staff members also added their fingerprints to the painting, creating the effect of green foliage around the tree. Each resident was given the opportunity to contribute to the artwork, adding their own unique markings to the picture. The artwork, which includes a contribution from every staff member and resident at The Hall, has already received many compliments from people at the home and has proven extremely popular on the home’s social media page. Staff at The Hall have
stated that they are looking at ways they could put postcards and mini prints of the painting up for sale, with the proceeds going to Dementia Forward; a local charity that provides support and information to people that have been affected by dementia. June, whose mother and mother-in-law both live at The Hall, said: “I’m delighted that the painting has been so popular. It has been really special involving residents in the design, chatting to them, and finding out about their life so that every fingerprint has a story to tell. “The painting we produced is truly unique and is a fitting tribute to the community feel at The Hall.” Diane Hagan, home manager at The Hall, said: “The residents really love June’s artwork and are always complimenting the paintings and creations she has done for our home. It was brilliant that we were able to come up with a concept that everyone could get involved with. “Not only was the tree of life painting great fun to make, but it also looks fantastic. Hopefully, we will be able to work with June to produce more projects like this in the future.”
Gladys Celebrates 103rd Birthday at L’Hermitage A resident at L’Hermitage Care Centre in St Peter, Jersey, was delighted to be able to celebrate her 103rd birthday with family members at the weekend as visitor restrictions start to be eased and garden visits begin at the Home. Gladys, who has been a resident at L’Hermitage since 2014, celebrating her 100th birthday there 3 years ago, has lived in Jersey all her life, through two wars, including German occupation in WWII, and has now seen the coronavirus pandemic cause major changes to everyone’s way of life. Her nephew Peter Monamy said it was lovely to be able to see his aunt for her birthday, “I usually see her at least twice a week, but that hasn’t been possible since the lockdown measures came into place in March. “The Home has done a great job enabling us to keep in touch, almost daily by telephone, and I deliver items of shopping to her weekly. Under the new visiting rules, I can now also visit by appointment to meet her outside for half an hour so we did this for her birthday and I hope helped to make the day special for her. “Obviously arrangements for her birthday this year were somewhat different from usual, but with Home Manager Colette’s help, Gladys still managed to meet up with family and friends – and I was able to join her for a special birthday lunch.”
The birthday party went according to plan with one of Gladys’ favourite dishes served up – Sea Bass with new potatoes and carrots, which she says are “good for eyes”. There was also a glass of champagne on ice and a fabulous rainbow cake served with a rousing chorus of Happy Birthday from the care team. Peter continued, “Gifts had to be ‘wipeable’, so flowers were not an option this time but chocolates and wine were gratefully received. It all went off very well and Gladys had a great day. Further celebrations are ‘pencilled-in’ for later in the year whenever ‘normality’ returns!” Home Manager Colette Bonner said; “Gladys is a remarkable lady. She’s active, popular and cheerful, up every morning at 5.30am and starts the day with a glass of orange juice, she has a lay in once week until 7.15am. “It was a privilege to be able to celebrate her 103rd birthday here with her and members of her family. Our chef made a fantastic cake and there was a celebratory feeling at the Home as a number of residents were having their first visitors in a long while. “It was lovely to see family members coming back into the gardens to see their loved ones. We have missed seeing them almost as much as the residents have.”
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How Can Care Homes Give Residents More Control Over Their Health? By Harjinder Singh, co-founder of NHS approved pharmacy dispensing hub, Smarta Healthcare
It is becoming increasingly important for residents to have a say in the decision-making process when it comes to their own healthcare. By including residents in conversations, they will feel a greater control and independence regarding their own health and wellbeing, whilst providing them with a greater understanding of the medication and level of care provided to them. Care homes can give residents more control over their health through a personalised care and support plan, which allow residents to be part of discussions with carers, community health and care professionals such as GPs. In having responsibility over medication management, residents with long term conditions will feel in control and able to manage their health effectively. Self-management recognises individuals as experts in their own lives, allowing them to acquire the skills and knowledge to cope as best they can for years to come.
WHAT HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT TOOLS ARE AVAILABLE TO RESIDENTS? Increasing usage of technology has made its way into care homes and is a great tool to help residents manage their own health and medication. There are many health management apps available, which allow patients to become more self-sufficient and independent as they are able to keep track of their medication and overall health. In addition, the growth of wearable technology such as fitness bands that monitor movement and heart-rate, digital hearing aids, tools to help monitor diabetes and blood pressure and medication reminders for those who are self-adminis-
trating can all provide data which can then be monitored. By using such technologies, health care professionals can continually monitor data created and use this to ensure a patient is keeping on top of their own healthcare. It can also help inform further clinical decisions, such as whether the individual needs further assistance or medication. If a resident is using such technology, it allows them to better understand and engage with their conditions, as well as giving their loved ones piece of mind that their health is being continually monitored. If a resident does not want to use these technologies to help manage their medication, devices can also be provided to allow them to have more control over their health by enabling them to administer their own medication without the help of a carer. These devices include an appliance that reminds patients when to take their medicine, as well as tools for the visually impaired and those with Dementia. Not only does this help during COVID-19 as it lessens the physical interaction that carers have with residents, but it also allows residents to feel a sense of independence as they can be responsible for their own medication.
HOW CAN TECHNOLOGY HELP CARE HOMES MANAGE RESIDENTS’ MEDICATION? There are various technologies available in the care home setting for both staff and residents. The use of such technologies helps reduce medication error, maintain residents’ drug regime as well as aiding the medication administration process. Many care homes have adopted an eMAR system, where medication can be identified through barcodes and can then be tracked at all stages from check-in at the care home, administration to the residents and the disposal or returned medication to the pharmacy. The technology allows full auditability through each stage, providing record keeping for healthcare professionals, as well as an archive of data that is secure. It is one of the safest ways to monitor the administration of medication to residents as it ensures all drugs and doses are correct and that the medication is given to the right person at the right time. It also allows care professionals to record any missed doses. Such technology can also provide Electronic Care Plans that can be updated regularly, with all new information available in real time.
Mölnlycke Launches New Wound Care Patient Educational Resources to Support Patients and Carers During the Coronavirus Pandemic
16 June 2020 at 9am. Milton Keynes. Mölnlycke
launches a suite of new patient educational resources to support wound care practice during the coronavirus pandemic, when home visits from a healthcare professional are more limited. The resources feature a range of easy to follow guides and videos for patients, or their carers, on how to look after their wound in their home, without a healthcare professional present. The resources include simple step-by-step guides on how to
remove an old dressing, clean a wound and apply a new dressing. It also includes top tips on when to change a dressing, signs of possible infection and how best to help a wound to heal. Commenting on the resource, Alison Scofield, Tissue Viability Nurse Specialist said: “During this current climate supporting patient self-care with their wounds has never been so important. With step by step pictorial processes to follow for dressing
changes, advice on lifestyle and any issues to look out for, this guide is suitable for patients at home and in care settings.” All resources are available to view, download and print via patient educational resource centre on the Mölnlycke Advantage webpage https://www.molnlycke.co.uk/patientselfcare/ .
Read all the latest stories online at: www.TheCarerUK.com Visit The Carer website to see all the very latest news and developments from the care sector as it happens! Sign up to get the latest stories delivered directly to your email at:
PAGE 26 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL RCP Presents Practical Solutions During the Pandemic PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS
Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP) is a leading global provider of hygiene, cleaning, waste and safety equipment to multiple industries. During the pandemic, healthcare facilities have been frontline environments battling COVID-19. The everyday heroics of medical staff have been acknowledged globally. Governments have reacted differently, but their advice has been consistent: ensure regular hand hygiene, enhance cleaning and waste procedures and maintain social distancing.
Surfaces are a primary contamination point. In a healthcare facility, cleaning products need to perform well, wherever they are used, under whatever conditions. RCP’s cleaning products place adaptability at their core. Microfibre products embedded with zig-zag technology remove 99.9% of microbes with or without bleach and are available in multiple colours to prevent cross contamination. Reusable cloths can endure up to 500 wash cycles before they need to be replaced. By using adaptable microfiber products, healthcare facilities improve their ability to clean alongside demonstrating visible cleaning to patients and visitors.
Healthcare facilities were considered the most forthright proponents of hand hygiene prior to 2020 and have still seen a dramatic increase in the need for hand
hygiene provisions. RCP’s contribution to the various settings of healthcare hand hygiene has been through free-standing hand hygiene stations and wall mounted dispensing solutions. Hand hygiene stations can be securely deployed wherever needed, providing instant hand hygiene via alcohol or alcohol-free hand rubs. These stations are touch operated, eliminating cross contamination risks while wall mounted units have antimicrobial touchpoints. Both use sealed soap refills that eliminate the contamination risks inherent in bulk refill systems.
Throughout healthcare facilities, there are multiple points where waste is created and stored prior to transportation. In both cases, it’s advisable to isolate waste in closed lid containers to prevent germs spreading. RCP waste management products provide closed-lid isolation of waste and further reduce risk with foot operation rather than manual handling. Smooth resin construction make them easy to clean between uses, eliminating lingering threats.
In addition to product solutions for healthcare, and to support all facilities through the pandemic towards
Mattress Maintenance Services Helping Hospitals and Care Homes Spring into Action
By Truan Remmington - Contracts Development Executive – Spearhead Healthcare In order to bring a mattress back into service after use, it needs to be completely cleaned and decontaminated to approved standards that guarantee bacterium and viruses such as C.Diff and MRSA are killed, and no cross contamination occurs. A challenge with mattress cleaning is not only that it requires large commercial washing machines but that different mattress types also require different treatment. The construction of air pressure mattresses for example means they cannot be washed in high temperature machines, requiring cold-water disinfection instead. The only certified process available, OTEX, injects ozone into each wash, killing all the harmful microorganisms without using the heat
or chemicals of traditional laundering. However, having the time, staff, and the facilities required to provide this level of deep clean for each of your mattresses can prove very costly. In additional to it being potentially dangerous, there is also a high probability of reputational damage if standards slip and go unnoticed by your staff, because this is something patients and their families will always, quite rightly, notice and report. The right rental and maintenance service will not only provide you with an appropriate mattress when you need it, but offer fast cleaning, repairs, and replacements, ensuring mattresses are up to the required standards. This undoubtedly saves you
reopening, RCP has created digital guidance documents: • Sector specific best practice guides • Cleaning and waste management guidance • Return-to-work preparation guide • Bulk refill soap systems health risk factsheet Constant dialogue helps RCP understand the needs and expectations of professionals across the healthcare sector. Taking this information, using it to develop products that solve multiple challenges, makes RCP the leading choice for performance and ROI. Find out more about Rubbermaid Commercial Products by visiting Rubbermaid.eu or emailing RCPEnquiries@newellco.com
money in the long term, provides the best possible levels of care to your patients and residents, and reassures all stakeholders that hygiene is a top priority; a must in the current climate.
WHAT SHOULD YOU LOOK FOR?
So what should you look for in a rental service – apart from a wide range of special purpose mattresses? Here are a few key pointers: • Rapid breakdown response • All work carried out by trained technicians • Mattresses returned in fully certified working order with free loans while repairs are carried out to allow you continuity of service • Servicing and/or repair offered in a hygiene controlled environment where mattresses are PAT tested, static pressure leak tested and cycle tested • Mattresses placed in an infection controlled 'Cold Storage' zone to control cross contamination • Mattresses completely cleaned and decontaminated using a specialist, certified decontamination system to approved standards • Transparent and clear results reporting for peace of mind In today’s ever-more pressurised care sector, on-demand mattress rental and maintenance services are playing a growing role in helping providers respond quickly to growing patient and resident intake. This allows you to maintain the highest possible standards of infection control practises in all areas. Visit www.spearheadhealthcare.com
HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 27
Hygiene Does Not Stop At The Washroom says Kimberly-Clark Professional
Now more than ever we all want to know that we are doing everything we can to keep ourselves, our colleagues and visitors safe and well. To do this requires understanding the science behind surface wiping and cleaning, says Kimberly-Clark Professional. We want to know that people have washed their hands properly and that places are as clean and as hygienic as possible. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recommends prioritising the daily cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces.
CLEANING VS. DISINFECTING Cleaning removes germs, dirt, and other impurities from surfaces or objects by using detergent (or soap and water) to physically remove germs from surfaces. This process does not necessarily kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection. Disinfecting kills germs on surfaces or objects by using chemicals1. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing
germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection. The CDC recommends a two-step daily routine to clean frequently touched surfaces. For Step 1 clean surface with a detergent or soap and water. With Step 2 disinfect the surface using an EN-registered disinfectant. Surfaces considered hot spots for germs include computer keyboards, phones and light switches. Science indicates why these surfaces need daily hygiene protocols in addition to hand hygiene standards in facilities For more information about how to make your facility truly exceptional â€“ a place where everyone feels equipped and empowered to contribute to a more hygienic environment â€“ visit our hand and surface cleaning page. https://youtu.be/WHNYNtVeymM https://home.kcprofessional.com/UK_Healthy_ Workplace_Cleaning_0520
+44 (0)203 488 5653
Tel: 01495 772164 I 07967 402995 www.shophygiene.co.uk
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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Haigh Engineering Resident and patient waste is a day to day practical matter that simply cannot become a problem for frontline carers and nursing staff. With the raised awareness of cross infection risks, the proven reliable waste disposal systems from Haigh are recognised more than ever as being a key part of the toolkit for ensuring that human waste is effectively and efficiently removed as a source of risk, day in day out, without the risks and complications of either washing pots or manual bagging waste for collection. The team from Haigh have been working hard to support this beyond just the manufacture of the Incomaster and Quattro waste disposers here in the UK, but also developing innovative and safe methods to enhance the
servicing provisions that are available to customers. The recently launched all-inclusive rental proposition has proven particularly effective and popular with new and existing customers alike, not least as it reduces the operational, maintenance and financing headaches from sites which have more critical matters to address. For more information about incontinence and bedpan waste disposal please feel free to contact the Haigh team on 01989 763131 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Angloplas Dispensers Help Reduce the Risk of Cross Infection Angloplas are a UK manufacturer who specialise in producing dispensers for the health and hygiene industry. Although these are designed to keep the workplace tidy and uncluttered they are, more importantly, built knowing the control of healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs) are a priority for healthcare providers, and who are employing a combination of infection prevention and control strategies, including hand hygiene, cleaning, training and the adoption of new technologies, to tackle the problem. As a result, a wide range of infection control products and technologies are emerging on the market, including antimicrobial technology. Angloplasâ€™ range of dispensers are produced in the worldâ€™s first proven Antimicrobial
PVC with silver ion technology and which is exclusive to Angloplas. This helps reduce the risk of cross infection by stopping the growth of bacteria and mould and works continuously for the lifetime of the product, reducing levels of bacteria such as MRSA, E Coli, Legionella, Salmonella and mould by up to 99.99%. For non-clinical environments Angloplas has recently launched its new Budget Range of products which are made to the same exacting standards as the antimicrobial protected ones but with lower price tags. You can order Angloplas products directly from its website by going to www.angloplas.co.uk and clicking Hospital, Health and Hygiene or by using the Quick Response code.
SANOZONE. The Easy Way To Sanotise Your Indoor Spaces SANOZONE, which delivers the most efficient sanitisation performance in indoor spaces, is now available from Barbel. Manufactured by Vitaeco S.r.l., the world famous manufacturer of the highly regarded HotmixPro thermal blender range, SANOZONE sanitises rooms of many sizes in enclosed HRC sites, hotels, restaurants, bars, conference rooms and similar establishments where totally reliable and regular sanitisation is needed. SANOZONE is particularly suitable for hospitals and care home areas, where absolute cleanliness is mandatory, and in areas where it is difficult or impossible to deliver effective sanitisation throughout. The SANOZONE range of machines
use Ozone (O3) technology, a gaseous form of Ozone that fills the room, reaching every corner of the space, santising surfaces and critical hard-to-reach corners homogenously, consistently and safely. The SANOZONE range of sanitisation machines are all equipped with the latest technology and customised disinfection programmes to suit your specific requirements. The running costs are considerably lower than any traditional disinfecting programmes and most importantly, there is no manual labour involved. For further information about the SANOZONE range, please contact Barbel on 01629 705110, email email@example.com, or visit the website at www.barbel.net
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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL
The Care Home That Remained Covid-19 Free Thanks To Ground-Breaking Protein
“There isn’t a doubt in my mind that it saved the lives of our residents and staff.” The owner of a care home has hailed a £20 face covering, coated in a ground-breaking protein called Viruferrin™ that is now scientifically proven to stop the spread of Covid-19, as ‘life-saving’, after it helped to prevent a coronavirus outbreak within her home. The news comes as ONS released statistics showing that just over 28% of all coronavirus deaths in Wales occurred in care homes. Former nurse Elen Hughes and husband Trevor Hughes, are owners/directors of the Plasgarnedd Care Home on Anglesey; they purchased the Virustatic Sheild face coverings for all their staff very early on in the pandemic when the World Health Organisation confirmed the COVID19 pandemic threat. This decision, they believe, is the main reason the care home was able to control the disease, despite one resident becoming ill with the virus and given a positive diagnosis. “The face covering, in my opinion, definitely stopped any type of transmission to my staff,” said Elen. “This meant none of them passed it on to the other residents. The protective face coverings have been life-saving. I stand by that! There is not a doubt in my mind that it saved the lives of our residents.” Elen, who oversees a team of 120 carers and support staff over two sites and in the community, made the decision to provide face coverings for all employees some time before guidance from Public Health Wales was changed to make them compulsory for the sector. “I saw these face coverings on the news and decided right there and then to go ahead and purchase them for my team. At that time, we were under no obligation to do that, we were told by Public Health Wales that
we just needed aprons and gloves, but because of my nursing background and I guess, a gut feeling, I just knew that the situation was serious and that we needed to protect our residents (all of whom are in single rooms) and that to do so we needed to protect our staff – even though there were no confirmed cases here.” continued Elen, “However, subsequently, one of our ladies became ill. When her condition deteriorated, our resident was admitted to hospital where it was confirmed that she had the COVID-19 virus. I have no doubt that this lady will have been infectious while she was in our care before and that the Virsutatic face coverings worn by our staff alongside scrupulous hygiene prevented them from becoming infected and spreading the virus through our home.” Some care homes in North Wales have unfortunately not been as fortunate. One with a similar number of residents, which received a positive diagnosis at the same time, has seen several staff members and residents test positive for Covid-19 and a number of fatalities. “We’ve had a similar set of results across both of our sites, so it can’t be coincidence. Others sadly haven’t been so lucky, and I simply put that down to the fact we’ve worn Virustatic Shields and that our amazing staff have followed our own strict infection control guidelines.” Virustatic Ltd, the leading biotech organisation behind the masks, donated 20 of its Shields to Plasgarnedd. Overall it donated 15,000 of its coverings to frontline workers, charities and those most at risk across the UK. Paul Stanton, a former national Director of NHS Board development, who works as an independent consultant with NHS organisations and with senior clinicians commented: “In any care home there is a significant risk that staff who have become infected in the course of their ordinary lives may, before their symptoms develop, unintentionally bring Covid-19 into their place of work and thus spread the virus to colleagues and to residents – unless they are suitably protected against airborne transmission of infected particles. “Where residents, as was the case at Plasgarnedd, are isolated within single rooms, unprotected staff could all too easily have spread the virus from one infected resident to others – and indeed to their colleagues. However, it seems that in this case the Virustatic protective face coverings helped to prevent any onward transmission. It will be important to establish, through properly conducted clinical trials, how important a contribution the protective face coverings can make in other private sector residential care settings”. Initial discussions are already underway between Virustatic and Care England, the umbrella representative body for private sector residential care home providers, to initiate such trials. “It will also be vital to the wider UK economy to establish, through properly conducted and evaluated trials, the contribution that these protective face coverings can make in other non-care workplaces. Potentially, the ability of this new form of face covering to prevent the spread of airborne particulate infections in workforce intensive employment settings could be
game changing” Paul Stanton said. This week it was announced that the ground-breaking Viruferrin™ coating used on the Virustatic Shield has been independently tested and proven to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection at a cellular level. The discovery is being hailed as a significant breakthrough in the fight against the disease, paving the way to research that could deliver a cure. The next step is clinical trials on preventative and curative applications of the Viruferrin™ technology. Paul Hope, Inventor of the Virustatic technology and products said: "The coating has been demonstrated to protect the cells. If that is replicated within the respiratory systems and lungs it will stop the virus spreading because it cannot infect other cells. We believe the tests demonstrate the effective preventative and curative ability of this coating against Covid-19.” Paul made it his mission to find a way to prevent deaths caused in pandemics after his own grandfather died of the Spanish Flu in 1919. This latest discovery builds on 10 years of work by Paul, his family and a team of British scientists and virologists. Paul ended: “I am delighted to hear that our face coverings have already proven life-saving for Plasgarnedd Care.” Plasgarnedd Care is an award-winning Care Provider which has over 30 years’ experience of providing the highest level of care and support for service users in and around Anglesey and Gwynedd. More information: www.plasgarnedd.co.uk The Virustatic Shield is available to buy direct from the website virustaticshield.com
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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Proven Technology Offers Greater Protection for Staff and Residents Against Covid-19
Care Homes are having to work around the clock to ensure their facilities are as clean and infection-free as possible, to try and prevent Covid-19 (and multiple other viruses and harmful bacteria) from entering their facility in the first place or containing it once it does. However, routine cleaning and disinfection, even with the use of other hand sanitisers and antibacterial surface cleaners, only sanitises the individual or surface for that moment in time, i.e. as soon as contact is made with an infected surface or introduced from the outside, the area or the person is no longer safe. In the tight confines of a Care Home, supporting one of the most vulnerable groups, cross infection via surface contamination is a major challenge. The transient nature of current cleaning regimes will always prove challenging, particularly as over 80% of germs are spread by hands. Now a proven, independently accredited technology that offers a protective barrier wherever there is a risk of infection is at the forefront of preventing and protecting against the spread of Covid-19. Once applied it stays active, providing up to 30 days
protection on surfaces and 24 hours on the skin. In a Care Home, this can dramatically reduce the chances of encountering a crisis by reducing the spread of dangerous pathogens either by hand or touch. OneSpray’s Hand Sanitiser offers 24 hours protection with one application, contains no alcohol, is ultra-gentle on the skin and won’t wash off during normal daily washing. This means it is very economical to use versus alcoholbased sanitisers, given that typically one person will apply those sanitisers up to 10 times per day. OneSpray’s Surface Sanitiser offers protection on nearly all surfaces including door handles, desks, door entry systems and keypads, touchscreens, phones, kitchens and taps. A single application forms an invisible barrier over the surface that lasts up to 30 days and will not wash off so normal, daily cleaning can continue. OneSpray products incorporate Zoono technology, world leaders in antimicrobial protection. Over 150 worldwide laboratory testing reports support the efficacy of their products. In earlier trials for London Underground a treated train came back 99.9% clear after 28 days of uninterrupted service. OneSpray is offering a Starter Outbreak-Prevention Package, specifically for Care Homes. It consists of a 5-litre Hand Sanitiser with two 1-litre dispensers, plus a 5-litre Surface Cleaner with two 500ml spray bottles. For more information contact 07811113108 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or see the advert on page 8.
New Health Check Station A new product has been released to help check individuals’ temperatures as they enter a public space. The Health Check Station by Contour Heating has been designed to help control the spread of infection in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Manufactured from mild steel with a BioCote® antimicrobial powder coating, The Health Check Station has been designed with safety and efficiency in mind. A durable Perspex screen with a small cut out provides the user with a safe means of checking employee and visitor temperature upon arrival. With a letterbox-style slot for documentation (such as registers and time-sheets) and informative signage to help reinforce key messages in relation to government guidelines, The Health Check Station can be used in offices, factories, retail units, public buildings, schools and much more. The Health Check Station is available directly from Contour Heating. Call +44 (0) 1952 290 498 to find out more or head over to www.contourheating.co.uk.
Staysafe Visor - CE-Certified PPE Manufactured in the UK Staysafe Visor is a subsidiary of 1st Packaging Ltd, a leading specialist UK plastics manufacturer founded in 2002. Used in a wide range of health and commercial settings, our high-quality recyclable CE-certified face shields offer protection against liquid droplets, sprays and splashes. Our visors are comfortable to wear for extended periods of time, are anti-fog and easy to assemble. As a long-established UK company, we have been able to step up our manufacture of PPE to meet high demand during the current unprecedented circumstances. Our facilities enable us to produce well in excess of 200,000 items per week. At Staysafe Visor our experienced team takes very seriously its role in support-
ing the health of the community by helping to maintain a safer environment. Availability and affordability are the cornerstones of our operation. Because we sell directly to businesses, organisations and the general public, we are able to remove the need for intermediaries and keep costs low. We believe that we offer the most competitive rates on the market for this type of CE-certified PPE. Our high-quality products are helping to better protect employees in the NHS, care homes, education, transport, manufacturing and a host of other workplace settings. For further details about our range of visors please do not hesitate to contact our friendly expert team. See page 4 for details or visit www.staysafevisor.co.uk
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 31
Meeting the hygiene challenge of COVID-19 By Zak Manhire, Chief Commercial Officer at Regency Design Protecting care home workers and their patients throughout the COVID-19 epidemic and beyond has been a constant challenge, and one that has attracted considerable media attention. It has also prompted the business community to look at its own capabilities, and whether manufacturing and production facilities can be turned over to fulfilling the ongoing demand for protective clothing and equipment.
Made out of premium quality products, Regency Designâ€™s dispensers cut down on sanitiser costs by using sensory technology to dispense an adjustable amount (1.5ml, 1.2ml or 0.8ml) of sanitizer gel or liquid per use. As well as this, the units are constructed out of Mild Steel, which makes them lightweight, yet robust and sturdy. They are all powder coated in a SteriTouch antimicrobial covering to ensure no harbouring of germs on the units themselves. The units are customisable with bespoke under surface mark resistant graphics applied on the front of the unit.
Our company, Regency Design, is one such company that has answered the call, and now produces a suite of products ranging from face visors to automatic hand sanitising units to keep carers, patients and guests safe and avoid cross contamination issues in often challenging environments. All of which manufactured in the UK at their site in Surrey. Our face visors prove useful for care-home staff as they are highly durable, re-useable and CE marked to demonstrate conformity with health, safety and environmental protection standards. They comprise a clear, polycarbonate panel with a soft foam headband and a Velcro adjustable strap. With anti-mist properties, high-quality optics with no distortion and a space for branding / name.
Most recently we have gone one better and added an innovative body temperature reading camera with AI Face recognition, that can measure temperatures within 100 milliseconds and at a distance of 0.5 metres all while someone is sanitising their hands. The infrared temperature sensor provides alerts when a person has a high temperature. The system is calculated with an algorithm for object heat and fast detection temperature accuracy, with a temperature sensing range of 30 degrees Celsius to 45 degrees Celsius and an accuracy of plus or minus 0.3 degrees Celsius.
Along with the face visors, Regency Design has also launched various automatic hand sanitising units to increase hygiene levels. The automatic hand sanitising units help reduce cross contamination by making the hand cleaning process completely touchless. Our units are diverse as they come as both small and large floor standing units, wall mounted units and countertop units, which provide convenience to all parts of a care home. The small and large floor standing dispensers allow all patients to reach the units, whether they are in a wheelchair or standing, and the countertop units provide hygiene for staff, administration and visitors.
The temperature reading system gives care home staff a non-invasive and comfortable way of checking, staff and guests temperatures, with an aim of reducing contamination issues and increasing hygiene. To go with the sanitising units, Regency Design also supplies a sanitiser gel or liquid, which can be put into the automatic dispensers so care home staff can keep their units topped up with ease and without worry of replenishment.
Regency has committed to offer a 1 5% discount on all its products if you use Carer20 when enquiring.
For more information please contact Zak Manhire on email@example.com or 07837391421 .
PAGE 32 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
CareZips Dignity Trousers ™
CareZips™ preserve dignity and privacy of people receiving care during diaper changes. CareZips™ make diaper changes easier and faster, reducing workload, saving efforts, and saving time! CareZips™ help to deliver better standards of care! Fitted with unique 3-zip fastening system, the CareZips™ make changing of incontinence diapers more dignified and comfortable for the patients and easier and faster for the carers. CareZips™ feature 3 strategically positioned zips, 2 of which run from the waist to the knees on both sides of the body. The 3rd zip goes from the inside of one knee up to the crotch and down to the second knee on the inside of the other leg. This zip facilitates total opening of the trousers at the crotch during diaper changes. The 3-zip system ensures fast and easy access to the abdomen and crotch without having to undress the patients or pull their trousers down.
CareZips™ are suitable for men and women. They are available in 7 sizes for perfect fit. CareZips™ are soft and wrinkle resistant with stretch and give for extra comfort. Practical, durable, washable and non-iron, the CareZips™ trousers are the perfect choice for daily use. Contact Win Health Medical Ltd - 01835 864866 www.win-health.com or see the advert on page 7.
New Skincare & Incontinence Leaflet A new ‘Skincare management in incontinence’ leaflet is available from Thornton & Ross Pharmaceuticals – manufacturers of Zerolon® Barrier Cream. Accredited by the Association for Continence Advice (ACA), the leaflet is designed as a quick guide for all health professionals involved with continence care. Including recommendations from NICE, the leaflet also outlines factors to consider when selecting a barrier cream and advice on helping prevent incontinence-associated dermatitis (IAD). Zerolon® Barrier Cream is the latest addition to the Zeroderma emollients and barrier creams range, specially formulated to prevent irritation from bodily fluids including urine, faeces and exudate. To receive a free copy of the ‘Skincare management in incontinence’ leaflet, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org Thornton & Ross Ltd, Linthwaite, Huddersfield HD7 5QH 01484 842217 www.zeroderma.co.uk
iMEDicare Ltd Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.
iMEDicare Ltd is a dynamic and rapidly growing Medical Device Distributor offering an exciting range of unique and market leading medical products for patient use in the fields of Urology and Continence Management Treatment throughout the UK. Our motto is “Pelvic Health Naturally” – premised on the ability of living tissues to react positively to clinically approved therapeutic measures in a pelvic health con-
text. Our logo features a very interesting version of the infinity symbol in blue – which also looks like the Pelvic Girdle bone structure. This symbol represents a sense of simplicity and balance – an important tenet in providing effective healthcare solutions and achieving optimal pelvic health. We offer a unique blend of professional and patient product training in Clinical and Home environments which are designed to improve individual product customizability, user uptake and long-term patient compliance and satisfaction. See the advert on this page for details.
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 33
LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS Cash’s Labels- “The Name Behind the Name” At Cash's, we aim to capture, reinforce and communicate our clients’ brand equity through quality and innovation, from design to distribution. Our product range fully caters for the needs of both small and large retailers and brand owners alike comprising of woven and printed labels, woven badges, care labels, branded and promotional swing tags, garment accessories, packaging and barcoding. Our ground breaking labelling and security technologies are also able to provide an unrivalled level of protection to
our customers' brand by assisting to combat counterfeiting and grey market activity. Our industry leading eCommerce system is designed to reduce cost, improve efficiency and streamline supply chain management and will fully protect the integrity and accuracy of critical business data. The order entry process is very simple meaning suppliers and vendors can spend their valuable time on tasks other than ordering apparel labelling and accessories. See the advert this page for details.
Please go on our website to see the new range of Dishwasher proof ID labels which can also be stuck onto textiles.
5 Reasons Why You Should Choose LaundryTec Chester based LaundryTec since its foundation in early 2016 has become one of Alliance Internationals major UK distributers. Founded by Jeremy Hartigan, the team of industry professionals with the backing of the Alliance Lavamac brand and supported by its service partner PDS Laundry based in Nuneaton. They supply a significant number of the UK’s leading health care operators with equipment, installation and after sale support. The LaundryTec designs offer not only washing, drying and ironing equipment but a full range of handling, distribution, folding and identification systems, to create a fully functioning laundry complete with all items necessary for efficient operation. Every LaundryTec machine includes full installation options, including the removal and disposal of an existing machine. A training program and a minimum of 24 months part and labour warranty. The environment is at the forefront of every opera-
tor’s mind. Standard specification on a Lavamac machine includes functions that automatically weigh and control the energy input into the machine and store the data in the machines memory. Our LS range of electric heat pump dryers require no ventilation or gas services and operates at 3kw per hour.
5 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD CHOOSE LAUNDRYTEC 1. Cost 2. Efficiency 3. Service 4. Design 5. Innovation Telephone 0151 317 3127 Web www..laundrytec.com
Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.
0151 317 3127
5 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD CHOOSE LAUNDRYTEC 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Cost Quality Service Design Innovation
PAGE 34 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
Calibre Audio - Unleash the Power of Your Imagination Audiobooks offer a gateway to the world of independence when print is inaccessible. Reading books has many health benefits; from reducing anxiety and helping to combat memory loss, to boosting mental health. Books provide us with companionship, adventure, empathy and enjoyment, and listening to audiobooks extends all of this to people who cannot read printed books. A restricting disability can bring with it the sting of isolation, and being locked out of activities that were once enjoyed can create frustration and loneliness. However, research has shown that listening to audiobooks can boost mental health (ref. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov), helping to
counteract depression and other mental health issues. Escaping to audiobooks provides comfort and companionship as well as being a coping strategy in hard times. Calibre Audio is a charity, providing free audiobooks to anyone who struggles to read print, through sight loss, dyslexia or a physical disability. Our collection of over 11,500 audiobooks includes books from all genres, both fiction and non-fiction, from the classics to the latest blockbusters; from crime to autobiographies. Our books are available online for members or delivered to your door via a free postal service. It is free and easy to join. Visit calibreaudio.org.uk for more information or to join. See page 4 for details.
Adaptawear Clothing To Help Healthcare & Care Home Workers: Independent & Assisted Dressing If you are a healthcare or care home worker or Occupational Therapist and struggling to dress your patients during this Covid-19 pandemic; then take a look at our range of Adaptawear adapted clothing for both men and women. Adaptawear comfort clothing has been designed to help independent living and assisted dressing with the aim to make getting dressed easier and less painful for both the wearer and carer. Adaptawear designs and manufacturers a range of ladies and men’s open back and drop front trousers, magnetic & open back shirts and blouses, dresses, skirts, open back nighties and front fastening bras. We also sell a selection of everyday essentials aimed at making people comfortable day and night. Adaptawear clothes are ideal for
arthritis, stroke, Parkinson, incontinence and dementia sufferers as well as people of all ages who struggle with buttons and zips. The easy fit clothes are made from quality and natural fabrics to provide maximum comfort. Adaptawear Offers: • Discreetly Adapted Clothes • Independent & Assisted Dressing • Ladies & Men's Daywear and Nightwear • UK Nationwide and Overseas Deliveries • No Quibble 14 Day Returns • VAT Exemption where relevant • FREE Delivery on orders over £100 For more information on Adaptawear’s Product Range please visit www.adaptawear.com. Carer readers please quote TC141 for 10% discount off your first order.
Why Specify a Yeoman Shield Fire Rated Door Edge Protector? When specifying for a structure, it’s important to be aware of the level of wear and tear a door can be exposed to in a public building. Door edges, in particular, can be easily damaged or worn down by regular use – which can then render them non-compliant for fire safety regulations. To ensure that a project remains compliant, an architect can specify durable door edge protectors to add durability and longevity to doors. Not only will specifying edge protectors increase the longevity of doors, they will enhance the cost efficiency of a project by reducing maintenance demands and the possibility of having to replace unsafe fire doors. Yeoman Shield fire rated Door Edge Protectors are unique with a 2.0 mm Vinylac outer and a specially formulated 9mm PVCu reinforced core. They are FD30 (1/2 hour) and FD60 (1 hour) rated
with intumescent seals that are in accordance to the fire door’s specification. Fire rated Door Edge Protectors are suitable for commercial applications such as residential blocks, schools and hospitals etc. Door Edge Protectors can also be specified with different fire seals, from a plain intumescent fire seal to a brush, fire and smoke variant. Of course, for doors that are non-fire rated in an architect’s project Yeoman Shield also provide quality edge protectors without seals to enhance durability and reduce wear. Source a full range of door protection panels and kick plates from a single supplier by choosing Yeoman Shield. Our door protection panels and kick plates offer the same lasting durability and quality as our door edge protectors. See page 12 or visit www.yeomanshield.com for details.
Workwear Experts For Over 100 Years Grahame Gardner has more than 100 years’ experience in clothing a broad spectrum of medical and healthcare professionals. Our knowledge and understanding of uniform demands ensure we remain one the UK’s most trusted and respected suppliers. We combine our extensive expertise with the latest innovations in technology and fabric and design, to offer you the highest quality garments to meet the demanding standards of healthcare professionals… all at exceptional prices! We also provide one of the most flexible embroidery services available from any clothing manufacturer using state-of-theart technologies that enable us to copy virtually any design or
logo directly onto your chosen uniforms. Whether you’re seeking a classic healthcare dress or tunic, or something from our bold and bright scrubwear range, you can find it with us. As one of the largest workwear providers in the UK, we are proud to be able to offer instant stock availability on 1,000s of workwear garments all in addition to our extensive range of ‘made to order’ items that can be manufactured on demand in a wide range of styles, fabrics and colours. To find out more, or for a no obligation discussion as to how we can help with your workwear requirements, please get in touch on 0116 255 6326 or email Info@grahamegardner.co.uk www.grahamegardner.co.uk
In-House Practical Engagement Workshop Scripts New Pressure Relief Options from Airospring Medical Now Available for Care Homes & Services Airospring Medical manufactures a range of pressure relieving devices. Our flagship products are a range of lightweight and breathable pressure relief cushions and mattress overlays made from high-tech 3D Knitted Spacer Fabrics. Airospring has been awarded a full patent in August 2014 approving this ground breaking technology. Our pressure relief cushions distribute weight and allow maximum airflow. The cushions have been tested for the dissipation of perspiration, a key factor in the fight against pressure ulcers. Welcome to a new standard in healthy seating. Call: 0115 9322403 Email: email@example.com Visit: www.airospring.com
Renray Healthcare Design and Manufacture New COVID19 Response Beds for Temporary Hospitals Renray Healthcare has developed a field response bed to supply to temporary hospitals, with our design expertise and manufacturing capability we have been able to put the COVID-19 Response bed and mattress into production quickly, with deliveries going out across the country to help in the fight against COVID-19. Renray has been supplying beds, mattresses and furniture for over 50 years and due to the increasing spread of Coronavirus, we are proactively using Hydrogen Peroxide Vapour (HPV) decontamination system in all our Heavy Goods Vehicles prior to delivery of your goods to eliminate the virus or any potential contaminant, making deliveries safer for our staff, customers and users. Let us know if you require beds for temporary or permanent hospitals, to ensure you have everything you need to continue caring for patients in this difficult time. Download our brochure now for more information: The COVID-19 Response Bed Brochure at https://tinyurl.com/unofs42 Please contact customer service on 01606 593456 or firstname.lastname@example.org who will be happy to assist you. See the advert on page 3.
C & S Seating Postural Management C & S Seating has been providing postural control equipment to hospitals, nursing homes, hospices and medical equipment services nationwide since 1991. With 9 different sizes of T-Rolls and Log Rolls in a removable and machine washable, waterproof Titex or Soft Knit material. These rolls are used to control posture and position of the body in either supine or side lying. Our Knee & Leg support wedges are available in 2 sizes. C & S Seating is the sole manufacturer of the Alternative Positioning Support (APS) system. Ideal when more control of the abducted lower limb is required (See photo) which has
removable side cushions and middle pommel; this is available in small or large. Our popular range of Soft Knit covers in a choice of 5 vibrant colours provide a softer alternative that fit easily over our standard waterproof rolls. It is recommended you seek professional advice to select the correct product depending on your needs. Contact us on 01424 853331 or visit us at www.cands-seating.co.uk to request or download a brochure, pricelist or order form, request an individualised quotation, speak to an advisor or to place an order. See the advert on page 10.
As training sessions and venues may be difficult to facilitate for some time, Happy Days Dementia Workshop has acted quickly, re-writing their ‘Practical Engagement Workshop’ into a series of easy to follow presentation and training guides. Enriching social care is at the heart of Happy Days, ‘It’s amazing to see how care teams are heartened and invigorated once they see how easy it is to engage more meaningfully with residents on a daily basis’ says Gillian Hesketh, MD of Dementia Workshop. Training in-house can support the safety of your care teams, reduce travel, time and cut costs. Demonstration and nostalgic materials can be included in packages with options to add an activity manual, reminiscence baskets and memory prompts. The workshops are ideal for building carer confidence, boosting morale and uplifting everyone’s mood.
Packages can be created to suit your care team requirements and resident interests. See The Carer front page or find starter practical workshop packs online at www.dementiaworkshop.co.uk / Phone direct on 07971953620 or see the advert on page 1.
The Benefits of Spillsafe Every year, thousands of working hours are lost to the sanitisation of furniture which ultimately can never be completely sanitised. This can feel like a losing battle to “beat the bugs” as any attempt to truly clean soiled furniture will inevitably only be scratching the surface. The true challenge lies inside the chair, a haven for contamination, but therein lies the problem. How do you clean the inside of a chair that has been soiled? The simple answer is “you don’t”. There is no way to truly clean a chair that has been soiled as liquids will find their way into every part of your furniture, absorbed by wood and languishing in foam and fabric. So, what is the solution to sanitising your furniture?
Simply, you stop anything from ever reaching the interior. The truest way of maintaining hygeine is to prevent unsanitary situations from ever reaching the areas that cannot be easily cleaned. Investing in hygienic barriers today not only saves time and money, but ensures the protection demanded by those who need it most. This was our maxim here at SpillSafe when developing our patentpending cassette system – Why allow the uncleanable to become unsanitary in the first place? Matthew Holmes, Director of SpillSafe Ltd. Contact Spillsafe Ltd on 0330 088 4851 or www.Spillsafe.co. See the advert on page 9.
New Guides To Supercharge Your Care Home Management Is continued customer satisfaction important to you? Could your communications with residents and their loved ones be improved? Does your care home's website need to be brought into the 2020's? If you answered yes to any of those questions, then you will be pleased to learn about a series of free expert guides for care home managers and owners. The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) in partnership with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has launched a series of guides for the care home industry. These guides provide you with specialist advice on fair trading practices, complaints procedures, communications methods and website layouts for care homes written by and for those
working in the care homes sector. UK consumer law is among the best in the world, but this also means that it can be complicated and in-depth. Care home regulations are no exception, and you may be overwhelmed by it all. These guides make it simple and straightforward so that you can avoid the regulatory pitfalls and improve your business for the good of you and your residents. The guides are hosted on Business Companion, a government-backed website containing a wealth of in-depth knowledge on every element of consumer protection written by industry experts in every sector. Download your free guides at: www.businesscompanion.info
PAGE 36 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
FOOD AND NUTRITION
Tackling Malnutrition in Dementia Patients
By Gillian Farren, Registered Dietitian
NUTRITIONAL CHALLENGES Patients with dementia face numerous challenges, all of which can have a significant impact on their ability to eat and drink. In the UK alone, it is estimated that 3 million older people are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition.1 Alongside weight loss, key micronutrient deficiencies are recognised, with an estimated 35% of older people showing deficiencies in vitamins A, B12, iron and zinc.2 Although weight loss is part of the natural ageing process, dementia is recognised as a key contributor.3 Moreover, the link between dementia and weight loss strengthens as dementia becomes more severe.4,5 It is important to support dementia patients in eating and drinking well, as inadequate nutritional intake can make a person with dementia more confused.6 Recent guidance from NICE recommends that carers “encourage and support people living with dementia to eat and drink, taking into account their nutritional needs” and “consider involving a speech and language therapist if there are concerns about a person’s safety when eating and drinking”.7 However, dementia carers face specific challenges in supporting patients to eat and drink enough.8
DYSPHAGIA: A BARRIER FOR DEMENTIA SUFFERERS Dysphagia is a term used to describe difficulty or discomfort in swallowing food, fluids and saliva. Dementia is a well-recognised cause.9 Signs of dysphagia in people with dementia include coughing or choking; difficulties chewing; spitting out food; wet gurgling voice after eating; and food/drink spilling from or residue in the patient’s mouth after eating.10 If dysphagia is not managed appropriately, patients can suffer severe health consequences such as chest infections, aspiration pneumonia and choking-related death 9.
PROMOTING A SAFE SWALLOW The International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI) is a global standard that describes correct and appropriate thickening of liquids and food texture modification, to ensure that they are safe to offer to patients with differing degrees of dysphagia.11 IDDSI gives clear descriptors for all levels of consistency, from level 0 (thin/unthickened) up to 4 (extremely thick) for fluids, and from level 7 (regular) down to level 3 (liquidised) for foods.11 It is vital that patients with dementia are only offered foods and drinks that are a safe and appropriate texture for their current level of dysphagia. This should be assessed and regularly monitored by a registered speech and language therapist. Many dementia patients dislike the taste and texture of thickening agents. Thus, products which do not require added thickener may be more acceptable, and can make it easier when patients with dementia are preparing their own drinks. Interestingly, research suggests that use
products which do not require added thickener can lead to increased food and fluid intake.12
PERCEPTION, DEXTERITY AND DISTRACTIONS Dementia often changes how patients recognise once-familiar foods, drinks and utensils.6 Additionally, preference for sweeter tastes and contrasting colours are commonly observed 3. Involving patients in preparing their own foods and drinks, alongside the use of adapted utensils and cutlery, and a reduction in distracting sounds, sights and objects at mealtimes, can encourage independence and focus, while preventing wandering off during mealtimes.13
USING THE “FOOD FIRST APPROACH” For patients with small appetites, foods and drinks can be enriched by adding foods rich in fats and sugars – such as butter, jam, cheese and cream – to increase energy and protein intake without increasing the amount of food eaten. This is referred to as a “food first” approach.14 While this is the preferred first-line strategy to tackle malnutrition, dementia patients can still struggle to meet their needs from food alone, and oral nutritional supplements or nutrition shakes such as NuVu Life are often recommended to fill the gap.15
HOW NUVU LIFE CAN HELP Made up with 200ml whole milk, one 50g sachet of NuVu Life delivers an impressive 362 kcal and 27.5g protein. When mixed with water or milk, it is IDDSI level 2 consistency. For patients requiring level 2 thickened fluids, NuVu Life removes the need for added thickening agents, thus saving time and reducing risk of error for carers and patients alike. Moreover, NuVu Life is enriched with vitamins and minerals, including those identified earlier in the article (i.e. vitamins A, B12, iron and zinc), which are a specific concern for older people. Just one 50g sachet on NuVu Life provides 100% of the recommended daily intake for these key micronutrients. NuVu Life is available to purchase online (www.nuvulife.com), RRP depends on the quantity purchased. Use voucher code TC30 to claim 30% off your order. For sales enquiries, or to request a sample of NuVu Life, please email email@example.com or call: 07740 844 405.
Martin McKee’s Croque Madame
REFERENCES: 1. Stratton R, Smith T, Gabe S. Managing malnutrition to improve lives and save money. BAPEN Report 2018. (available at http://www.bapen.org.uk/pdfs/reports/mag/managingmalnutrition.pdf ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 2. Maggini S, Pierre A, Calder P. Immune function and micronutrient requirements change over the life course. Nutrients. 2018; 10(10):1531. (Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6212925/ ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 3. Prince M, Albanese E, Guerchet M, Prina M. Nutrition and dementia: a review of available research. Alzheimer’s Disease International 2014. (available at https://www.alz.co.uk/sites/default/files/pdfs/nutrition-and-dementia.pdf) [accessed 07 June 2020] 4. White H, Pieper C, Schmader K. The association of weight change in Alzheimer's disease with severity of disease and mortality: a longitudinal analysis. J Amer Geriatrics Soc 1998; 46(10):1223-7. (available at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.15325415.1998.tb04537.x) [accessed 07 June 2020] 5. Albanese E, Taylor C, Siervo M, Stewart R, Prince MJ, Acosta D. Dementia severity and weight loss: A comparison across eight cohorts. The 10/66 study. Alzheimer’s & dementia: the journal of the Alzheimer’s Association. 2013; 9:649-656. (Avaiable at https://alzjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1016/j.jalz.2012.11.014) [accessed 07 June 2020] 6. Alzheimer’s Society. Caring for a person with dementia: a practical guide. 2019. (Available at: https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/sites/default/files/202003/caring_for_a_person_with_dementia_600.pdf ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 7. National Institute for Clinical Excellence. Dementia: assessment, management and support for people living with dementia and their carers (NG97). 2018. (Available at: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng97 ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 8. NHS Education for Scotland. Supporting People with Dementia in Acute Care: Learning Resource. 2016. (available at: https://www.knowledge.scot.nhs.uk/media/11866144/supporting%20people%20with%20dementia%20in%20acute%20care%20final%202016%20web.pdf) [accessed 07 June 2020] 9. Holdoway A, Smith A. Meeting nutritional need and managing patients with dysphagia. Journal of Community Nursing. 2020; 34(2):52-59. (Available at: https://www.jcn.co.uk/files/downloads/articles/12-nutritionalneed.pdf) [accessed 07 June 2020] 10. Hansjee D. 5 Fundamental Ms: cutting aspiration risk in dementia and dysphagia patients. Nursing Times. 2019; 115(4):38-41. (Available at: https://cdn.ps.emap.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2019/03/190327-5-Fundamental-Ms-cutting-aspiration-risk-in-dementia-and-dysphagia-patients.pdf) [accessed 07 June 2020] 11. International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative. Complete IDDSI Framework detailed definitions 2.0. 2019. (Available at: https://ftp.iddsi.org/Documents/Complete_IDDSI_Framework_Final_31July2019.pdf ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 12. McCormick S, Stafford K, Saqib G, Ni Chronin D, Power D. The efficacy of pre-thickened fluids on total fluid and nutrient consumption among extended care residents requiring thickened fluids due to risk of aspiration. Age and Ageing. 2008; 37(6):714–715. (Available at: https://academic.oup.com/ageing/article/37/6/714/40923 ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 13. Crawley H, Hocking E. Eating well: supporting older people and older people with dementia. Caroline Walker Trust. 2011. (Available at: http://www.cwt.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/EW-Old-Dementia-PracticalResource.pdf ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 14. Forbes C. The ‘food first’ approach to malnutrition. Nursing and Residential Care. 2014; 16(8): 442-445. (Available at: https://www.magonlinelibrary.com/doi/abs/10.12968/nrec.2014.16.8.442 ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 15. Robinson K. Nutrition and Dementia. Dietetics Today. Sept 2018; 42-43 (Available at: https://www.bda.uk.com/resource/nutrition-and-dementia.html ) [accessed 07 June 2020]
Are You in Need of * Dysphagia Training ? Did you know that between 5075% of nursing home residents suffer from dysphagia1? Nutricia has a
INGREDIENTS Sandwich • • • • • • •
20 slices of thick white bread 20 British Lion eggs 20 honey roast ham 2 red onions 150 grated mature cheddar 150 grated Gruyère cheese 50g butter (soft)
Bechamel • • • • • •
90g butter (unsalted) 90g plain flour 1/4 tsp English mustard 100g milk powder 900ml milk (whole fat) 50g grated parmesan
Serves: 10 Allergens: Eggs, wheat, milk
Method: 1. To make the Béchamel, fortify the milk with milk powder in a pan. In a separate pan, combine the melted butter with flour. Slowly incorporate the butter on a medium heat until it’s smooth. Add the parmesan, mustard and salt and pepper. 2. To make the sandwich, spread each slice of bread with the Béchamel before adding some ham, red onion, Gruyère cheese, cheddar and pepper. 3. Spread the top slice of bread with butter. Heat a pan on a medium heat and place the sandwich butter side down with a little extra butter and fry on each side. 4. Remove from the heat, top with more Béchamel and cheese and place in the oven to finish cooking at 170°C for 3 – 4 minutes (fan oven). 5. Remove the fried sandwich and top with a sunny side up British Lion egg. 6. Serve with a fresh tossed mixed salad with red onion, mixed peppers, tomatoes, cucumber, radish and carrot. Recipe courtesy of www.eggrecipes.co.uk For more information please call the British Egg Information Service on 020 7052 8899 or see the advert on page 19.
training solution for you, a FREE elearning covering the fundamentals of dysphagia management using Nutilis Clear. The training is divided into 4 sections and has been specially designed for busy health and social care staff caring for people living with dysphagia. It takes 60 minutes in total to complete, however you can complete one section at a time.
HOW CAN THIS TRAINING HELP YOU? • Easy & convenient online solution to dysphagia training • Visibility to track progress in your care home • Raise the quality standard of dysphagia care in a consistent way
ing professional development. There is a certificate that can be downloaded once the training has been successfully completed. Use the camera on your phone to scan the QR code to access the elearning and get started! For any questions contact your local Nutricia sales representative or our Resource Centre at firstname.lastname@example.org. Nutilis Clear is a Food for Special Medical Purposes for the dietary management of dysphagia and must be used under medical supervision. Reference: 1. O’Loughlin G, Shanley C. Swallowing problems in the nursing home: a novel training response. Dysphagia 1998; 13, 172-183.( https://www.rcslt.org/speech-and-languagetherapy/clinical-information/dysphagia)
The quality standards aim is for all new health and social care staff members caring for patients with Dysphagia to complete the modules as part of their induction programme. Existing health and social care staff members should also complete the learning to support their continu-
*This training is intended for healthcare professionals only.
NEW DYSPHAGIA E-LEARNING Between Between 50-75% of nursing nursing home residents from residents suffer suffer fr om dysphagia dysphagia1
ARE YOU IN NEED OF DYSPHAGIA TRAINING? NUTRICIA HAS A SOLUTION! A FREE e-learning covering the fundamentals of dysphagia using Nutilis Clear*
4 modules 60 min utes minutes
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PAGE 38 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE TumbleCare from Easylink Workforce Scheduling Solutions Medpage Limited T/A Easylink UK was established in 1984 after the invention of an alarm clock to wake deaf people. The “Shake Awake” set a new precedent in quality standards for products designed for sensory care, notoriously at the time – rubbish. The company invented a new device for the detection of nocturnal epileptic seizures in 1994, which also set a new precedent for quality, especially after the company achieved certified medical accreditation. We could boast and say we have supplied more seizure detection monitors than any other company in UK. You could say we are innovators; we are and very proud of it. To constantly adapt to changes in demands for care technologies, remain competitive and continue to develop new care solutions it takes more than intelligence, it takes passion. Despite the COVID-19 lockdown, failing economy, factories closing and international
shipping facing the worst crisis ever known, we have battled through. At the start of the lockdown we supplied the NHS and Local Authorities with over 2000 bed occupancy detection alarm systems, many of them used to enable long term patients to be discharged from hospital to free up beds for COVID victims. Independent living support was and is essential during this pandemic. Now we launch our new brand. TumbleCare. The TumbleCare brand is a range of fall detection and prevention products focussing on affordable quality and product performance. The products are tough, easy to set, use and provide carers with reliable advance warning notification of potential falls. Visit our website. Firstly, you’ll be amazed at the variety of care solutions we offer, then blown away by our realistically fair pricing. www.easylinkuk.co.uk
WristPIT from Pinpoint
unaware that a patient had had a fall for quite some time. Pressing the clearly labelled call button on the WristPIT notifies the personnel on duty that a patient is The WristPIT from Pinpoint,is a bespoke patient call requesting help and informs staff exactly where the transmitter designed to be worn on the wrist. patient is. The call button is recessed and surrounded This wrist-worn personal infrared transmitter by a bump guard to prevent false alarms. (WristPIT) is easily accessible and allows patients to Pinpoint Alarm Systems are installed in thousands of activate a call for even if they are away from their bed or medical facilities throughout the UK and USA. The new a fixed call-point. WristPIT is backward compatible and easily integrated Pinpoint’s renowned PIT technology into existing Pinpoint Systems. (usually worn by staff for personal A green LED indicates the WristPIT is ‘activated’ safety) has, for the first time, been with good battery level. When the battery requires designed around patient use. The changing, the LED flashes red until the battery is WristPIT can withstand showering and changed and the device has been retested. brief submersion in water and also In addition to being water-resistant, the incorporates antimicrobial product WristPIT has been designed to withstand protection, reducing the ability for bacharsh environments and user tampering, teria to grow. meaning suitability for facilities where According to figures published by the service users may be at risk of selfNational Reporting and Learning System, harm. around 250,000 incidents where patients For more information: required assistance in hospital were reported in www.pinpointlimited.com 2015/16. In many cases, nursing staff remained
Workforce Scheduling Solutions deliver Electronic Time & Attendance systems worldwide, using the latest Face Recognition technology. Why should care homes move from paper to electronic time sheets
The industry is under considerable financial pressures. An efficient electronic booking on/off system that will schedule, provide budgets, calculate hours worked, overtime and absence such as sickness and holiday entitlement will save Time and Money.
How is time and money saved by doing things electronically?
Collecting payroll information from paper timesheets can be slow, prone
to errors, and very labour intensive. Staff rosters can be produced as far in advance as practical and accurate within budgeted hours. Staff book on and off-duty electronically, thus eliminating any time errors. Wage queries are virtually eliminated and immediate checks can be made without wading through reams of paper which invariably are inaccurate, misfiled or even 'lost".
There are many systems on the market - Why facial recognition is important and how it works Some systems use tokens, which can be lost or left at home, requiring management involvement in the booking on/off procedure. Fingerprint systems can be beaten and Social media is awash with ways
to copy fingerprints. Face recognition combined with a staff PIN is simple to use and manage using touch screen technology and web cams. Staff see their image displayed immediately when booking on or off and confirms their identity visually. It provides the best deterrent available as it builds a greater 'image knowledge’ of each employee, a picture is worth a thousand words. Eliminates 'buddy punching' where employees can book colleagues on/off duty using someone’s tokens, swipe card or even fingerprint.
How is data protected?
With the correct security setup computer systems provide more data protection than paper-based records which can be easily removed or stolen. GDPR covers all data including paper records and therefore the chances of infringing the rules and incurring fines is greater with paper. Visit www.wfsoftware.co.uk
CARE VISION – Outstanding Care is at the Heart of Everything We Do At Carevision, outstanding care truly is at the heart of everything they do. They have combined over 40 years of hands on experience running care homes and working with some of the smartest mind in tech, they have created Care Vision - An all-in-one, cloud-based system that incorporates all your care and admin in to one easy to use system. Carers can compile resident notes, health observations and EMAR. Care home managers can manage rotas, accounts, HR and house-keeping tasks and log visitors using the digital visitor book. Residents can use the system to make personal choices on meals and activities and use the app to keep in touch with family and friends. Rishi Jawaheer, director at Care Vision says “The 100+ care homes that
PINPOINT WRISTPIT The WristPIT is a wrist worn Personal Infrared Transmitter designed exclusively for patient use. The latest call button is recessed and surrounded by a bump guard to prevent false alarms. It is also backward compatible, allowing seamless integration into existing Pinpoint Systems.
DID YOU KNOW? Biomaster Technology is incorporated into all surface areas of the product during manufacture, inhibiting the growth of contaminating bacteria 24/7 for the lifetime of the product.
use our system have seen its benefits – They are saving 2-4 hours of staff hours per resident, per week and they are achieving outstanding CQC results. Carers love it, residents and relatives love it, and care home managers can’t remember how challenging managing a care home was before it.” Of course, taking on a whole new system can seem daunting, that’s why Care Vision offer minimal investment, all round support and flexible hardware options. They don’t feel the need for long-term contracts, Rishi says “We have total confidence, once you use Care Vision, you will love it as much as we do.” The Care Vision team would love to talk to you about what the system can do for you. Contact at email@example.com or call 0208 768 9809. See the advert on page 42 for details.
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 39
TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE What Has COVID-19 Taught Us? During the last few months, the response to the COVID-19 pandemic by services and technology companies has been epic. Decision making processes which normally take months, even years took days. Massive co-ordinated efforts with care homes, hospital trusts, local authorities, manufacturers and suppliers all coming together on projects across the UK. We can certainly say, having been heavily involved in many projects in the UK and around the World, that Courtney Thorne are enormously proud and humbled to have played our part. One of the largest temporary Field Hospitals is the Dragon’s Heart Hospital inside the Principality Stadium in Cardiff. This vast stadium initially housed 335 emergency beds, when an additional 1200 beds were required Courtney Thorne was approached to supply,
install and commission nurse call points throughout the pitch and seating areas. These call points (including shower and toilet alarms) were supplied, installed and commissioned by Courtney Thorne’s own engineering team. Designed into 55 separate “wards” and integrated with paging systems. Completed in two weeks, it was a herculean effort by everyone involved. No one could have predicted what was going to happen when in January we heard of deaths in China spreading. The impact of the lock-down in March brought home the scale of the problem as business owners worried, not knowing what the consequences might be. This was true for those of us supplying the healthcare sectors, with hospitals focussing on the pandemic and care homes locking down to protect elderly residents.
As we reduce the lock down rules, for many people and businesses this means a degree of normality and returning to work, albeit with social distancing. Those in the care sectors however will be more cautious so not to risk the vulnerable and elderly. Where there are COVID-19 free hospitals some of the day to day maintenance, building work, refurbishment will re-start, and it is here that the health and care solution providers need to be ready to support these projects. Care homes need to make sure the safety of those in their care is not compromised by aging or failing nurse call systems. Courtney Thorne continued to provide full engineering, sales and support functions throughout the lock down period. A serious consideration when deciding who will supply business and person critical technology in the future. When we look back on this period, no doubt some of the practices learnt will stand the test of time, such as flexible working with more home working. Video conferencing has at last come of age, e-training, webinars, online meetings have been the savour of many busi-
nesses. It therefore appears to have taken a pandemic to create a situation where communication technologies, readily available becomes normalised. Spending quality time with our closest family is favoured rather than spending hours sat in commuter traffic. Business leaders at last realise that they can trust colleagues to do the right thing. Maybe there is a compromise to be gained where work can be more flexible, coupled with face to face meetings, not for every individual nor every business, however it is a start. For more information about solutions for care, see Courtney Thorne's advert on page 11 or visit www.c-t.co.uk
How Can Employers Help Improve the Work-Life Balance and Mental Health of Social Care Workers? Hailed as heroes during the pandemic, social care workers dedicate their lives to help the old, the weak and the sick. Often forgotten and under-valued, their mental health is under strain and COVID-19 has understandably worsened the situation. How can employers help their employees restore a healthier work-life balance?
THE STATE OF THE SOCIAL CARE WORKFORCE A new survey by Quinyx found that health and social care workers are amongst those most likely to have their mental health negatively impacted by their job. The pandemic has made it worse: 54% of those polled said that their work had negatively impacted their mental health over the past 12 months, versus 48% before the pandemic - a 12% increase.
LOW PAY, LONG HOURS AND HIGH EXPECTATIONS COVID-19 has seen them work longer hours and be in the spotlight, with high expectations from their employers, the nation, the government, and to an
extent, global scrutiny over which country will do “better” at handling the crisis. Added to the fear of getting sick or contaminating their loved ones, it is easy to imagine the mental burden on those who risk their lives to help others. Prior to the outbreak, the main reasons invoked by those who suffered poor mental health as a result of their job were low pay (42%) and managers’ expectations being too high (37%). Some concerns were alleviated during the pandemic though, with 72% of healthcare workers polled saying that they felt valued by their employer, versus 53% prior.
WHAT CAN EMPLOYERS DO TO IMPROVE THE SITUATION? While increasing wages may not always be possible, three areas can make a positive difference: - Two-ways communication channels, effective and open, to monitor and engage. - Allowing greater flexibility and control over work hours to restore a healthy balance.
- Optimised schedules to improve efficiency, reduce the overall cost of labour and help both workers and managers plan ahead.
HOW TO SUCCEED? Using technology to improve your workers’ work-life balance and wellbeing is one way to stay ahead of the game. Technology can help keep your employees productive, connected and happy. A solution like Quinyx helps empower workers, while optimising communication, time management and resources. It can also ensure that employers comply with the new regulations around contact and tracing, all through a simple, user-friendly app. www.quinyx.com/survey * Research conducted by Censuswide in two stages: the first was conducted with 1,200 deskless workers who work an hourly schedule in the following sectors: healthcare and social assistance, retail, hospitality and tourism, shipping/distribution, transportation and warehousing. It took place between 11.03.2020-23.03.2020. The second was conducted with 1,205 deskless UK workers in these same sectors.
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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 41
TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE The Tiny Tablet from Inspired Interaction be useful for staff training, presentations and transferring data. "This new interactive experience has been of great benefit to our longterm residential residents with mid to late stage dementia, focusing on three primary outcomes of play: sensation, relaxation and reminiscence. Their interaction and engagement have increased considerably since using the table". Stuart Davies - General Manager Plas Bryn Rhosyn, part of the Pobl Group Tel: 07950 513 176
Our touch tables are portable, adjustable and utilized the same way as a smart phone or iPad. They are ideal for improving the well being of residents through App Technology. Every Tiny Tablet comes with a commercial grade screen and a chargeable built in power pack so there are no potential trip hazards. We offer both fixed and height adjustable tables, making it accessible for standing or seated use. Wi-Fi capabilities allow the table to be used anywhere around the care home, enabling every resident to benefit both in a group activity environment and privately on a one to one basis. Having the option of USB, HDMI, VGA and Bluetooth means various devices can be connected to the table, increasing options of use. This can
Sales & Enquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.inspired-interaction.com HRH Prince Charles discovering the Tiny Tablet at Plas Bryn Rhosyn Care Home
Using Technology to Manage the Prevention and Control of Infection in Care Homes For care home residents, infections can be serious, and in some cases, life-threatening. So, in the midst of a pandemic, the focus on good infection prevention and control practices has never been more important. Over the last few months, we have supported Radar Healthcare customers in the management of Covid-19 related incidents, helping them to map resident outbreaks, identify pockets of self-isolating staff and anticipate consequential risks as a result. The steps taken in care homes to protect residents and staff from infection represent an important element in the quality of care. So, knowledge and understanding of outbreak prevention, preparedness, detection and management is key.
PREVENT The dynamic management of emerging risks is a collective responsibility and one which ensures your workforce is fully involved in the process of preventing and controlling infection. Risk registers should be actively maintained and monitored with a standardised risk scoring mechanism to facilitate prioritisation. Risk stratification combined with regular audits and assessments to identify potential hazards can then support the creation of preventative action plans.
PREPARE Engaging with your workforce to co-create your strategic and
operational approach to infection prevention and control can support you to embed a culture of continuous improvement in this area. Education plays a critical role in the prevention and control of infection so it’s critical that you manage and track workforce capability and competency – giving you peace of mind that they understand the importance of infection control and the specific role they have to play.
DETECT Clear communication of symptoms, guidelines and procedures ensures staff are equipped to recognise an outbreak and take appropriate action. With standardised procedures for reporting active cases and incidents, you can develop a clear picture of the pace and spread of the infection.
DIGITALISING YOUR OUTBREAK MANAGEMENT PLAN Prompt investigation and control of infection outbreaks is critical to protect the safety of residents and staff but mobilising an infection outbreak response can be difficult if information is siloed or managed manually. Find out more about how Radar Healthcare can support your infection control processes at info.radarhealthcare.co.uk/infectioncontrol/
Interactive Activity Touch Tables for care homes, education & hospitals. Based in the West Midlands, all of our Tiny Tablets are designed and manufactured in the UK.
Utilising the latest touchscreen technology, we’ve created a range of products that are easy and intuitive to use, combining education & play through the use of interactive technology.
■ Wi-Fi Capabilities
■ Screenshot Function
■ Google Play Store Accessibility
■ Wheelchair Accessible
■ Internet Browsing
■ Films and Catch Up TV
■ Brain Training / Collaborative Apps ■ Skype
■ 8 Hour Use Off One Charge
■ Data Saving Option ■ Multiple Users
■ Durable Screen
■ 3 Year Warranty
■ Full Onsite Training with every product
07950 513 176 email@example.com www.inspired-interaction.com
PAGE 42 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16
TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Mainteno Facilities Maintenance and Management Software Facilities Maintenance and Management Software Simple to use, easy to maintain and very affordable.
✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔
Reporting tasks and faults Asset tracking and value reporting Invoice management Add multiple images and documents Detailed analytical reporting Dashboard reporting showing live status of all tasks Management of all planned maintenance schedules Compliance testing and inspections Traffic light detailed reporting for audit purpose Audit reporting Direct allocation of work to relevant parties Can be used for help desk Supplier performance management and reporting Warranty and insurance management Can be used on any web enabled device Link tasks to calendar Create check lists for compliance purposes Contractor Quotes and Invoice Management Contractor Login upload function
www.mainteno.com 020 8798 3713 firstname.lastname@example.org
Whether it’s managing planned maintenance or dealing with fault repairs, Mainteno simplifies the day-to-day maintenance of almost any organisation. Mainteno also seamlessly incorporates asset management and tracking. Mainteno streamlines every aspect of the maintenance management process, saving your organisation time and money. Usability made affordable Mainteno was designed with practicality in mind. The interface is so intuitive that basic operation can be learned in minutes, and you can be a power user in one afternoon. Elegant usability usually means a hefty price tag. However, our pricing structure means that for small
organisations, Mainteno can cost as little as two cups of coffee a month. No set-up fees, no lengthy contracts and a free trial, all mean that the system starts paying for itself straight away. Dr Asif Raja, Bsc MBBS Summercare Managing Director says “Facing significant challenges of ever increasing quality and compliance demands upon time and resources as well considerable economic pressures, Summercare, an award winning provider of residential care and housing related support, sought to upgrade their systems for managing the property and environmental aspects of its service delivery. After an extensive period of investigation and research Mainteno was selected as the platform of choice for the entire organization based on its ease of use, very short-term contract, quick set up and ongoing support.” Visit www.mainteno.com, Tel: 020 8798 3713 or email email@example.com
Network Communication Systems Network Communication Systems Ltd ( NCS ) was established in 1992 and from the outset has provided Telecare and Security Products and Services, primarily to Local Government (Housing) and Housing Associations. Today we have many accreditations to our name including ISO 9001 Quality Management which ensures the company meets its quality commitments The company offers a full range of services encompassing Consultancy, Design, Project Management Installation and Maintenance The company supplies both 3rd party and own brand products for individual and grouped living. Grouped Living encompassing Sheltered Housing, Extra Care and Nursing Homes The Company offers maintenance on any make and model of
Telecare and Security Products/Systems, including system upgrades, partial and full, for better operation with the new digital telephone system being phased in by 2025. Maintenance can be offered on an ad-hoc basis or contractually via various packaged service agreements, depending on customer requirements Recently the company has just completed a design and installation project for Central Bedfordshire Council comprising over 50 CCTV cameras, some of which offer auto-tracking to get the best possible close up high quality image, Recording Equipment, Security Doors including Door Entry and Access Control and Automatic Swing Door Operators. All delivered to the client’s satisfaction. For further information, please visit www.nsgroup.co.uk
Please Please mention mentionTHE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.
IT’S NOT OBSOLETE UNTIL THE OPERA LADY SINGS Grouped Alarms - Fully Integrated Telecare and Security
• 2 System types available depending on requirements • Door Entry panels and standalone fob readers • Telecare room units with choice of peripherals • On-site / Local Offsite / Off-site operation • BS8521 protocol for remote Off-site monitoring
Door Entry and Access Control
• High quality robust stainless steel panel • Panels and readers can be inter-connected • Cloud based remote management option • Well specified - Will meet your requirements • High reliability and fault tolerant • DDA compliant • Parts availability - 15 years • Low cost
Carephones and Peripherals
• Tele-care for individual properties • High quality product • Available in various models (PSTN or GSM) • Allows connection of multiple peripherals • The only product in the marketplace that offers wireless remote speech stations and voice pendants • Compatible with most Alarm Receiving Centres • Low Cost
EDISON TELECOM LTD (IN BUSINESS SINCE 1984)
have spares, enhancements and expertise for wired and wireless systems abandoned by the original manufacturer, whoever they are.
Call us on 01252-330220 We can give most systems a new lease of life and maintain them into the future.
THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 43
TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE ETHEL, The Smart Care Hub The Covid19 pandemic has really ripped through our healthcare system and it has impacted the Care Home industry in a profound way too. However, whatâ€™s been quite evident, is the resilience of staff and their drive to better manage the residents in their care. In a way, the pandemic offers us an opportunity to explore if â€˜technology enabled careâ€™ can help us solve some of the issues we are facing. Can Tech help busy Carehome staff offer better support, connect the residents regularly with the family, help with clinical outcomes, without adding to their workload? It is in this context that solutions such as ETHEL, the
smart care hub has attracted a lot of interest from the Care Home sector. ETHEL is a large (16 inch) touch screen personal device with a robust stand and tailormade for 85+ yr olds who have little or no computer skills. Its easy to use interface and robust security features helps a resident connect with their wider family network and clinical team in an easy way. Families can make video calls to the Large screen device, they can send photos and video clips and send simple messages. It also allows the clinical team to offer remote physiotherapy, remotely gather vital signs from the resident on a regular basis and do remote video consultations. ETHEL also comes with a built in Early Warning Scoring system for detecting deterioration. A number of patients across the UK â€“ from Shetland Islands to the devon coast have benefitted from using ETHEL. You can get more information at www.ethelcare.co.uk and/or call us on 07841977559.
C CONNECTING ONNECTING RESIDENT TS RESIDENTS with ffamily amily & clinical team. team.
Qintil Learning Manager Qintil was created for the care sector and weâ€™re proud that so many incredible health and care professionals and their employers use Qintil everyday to learn and maintain skills and manage training and compliance. Qintil is a lifelong learning platform that's built for the way the world works today. You'll almost certainly have more than one job in your lifetime, and quite possibly more than one career. You might even work more than one job at once, or for a staffing agency. We built Qintil so that you can find, share and manage everything that's essential for work - your learning, certificates, achievements and right to work docs - in one place. You can share them, connect to more
We here at Edison Telecom Ltd have been providing specialist solutions to your call system requirements tailor-made to each customers needs for over 25 years, says director Bob Johnson. Is your current Nurse Call â€œlegacyâ€?, obsolete, so full of software bugs or commercially not viable for your current supplier/maintainer to maintain? We may have just the part and expertise that you are looking for to give your nurse call a further extension to
than one employer's learning at one time and when you move to a new job, contract or career you can take it all with you and continue to add to your lifelong record of learning. This all helps employers too of course. Now there's an easy way to get a record of new hires' learning and documents and to deliver their own training from any source. Our mission is to help everyone benefit from the thousands of ways there are to learn and to have one place to find, manage and share it all. Try for free today. Call 0300 577 1484 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web qintil.com life, adds Bob, â€œEdison will treat your nurse call with the same compassion that you give to those in your care. There will come a time when your equipment is beyond repair but Edison are experts in extending the life of obsolete systems.â€? www.edisontelecom.co.uk
Family virtual Family visits Virtual Clinical Virtual C onsultation Consultation V ital Signs & Vital NEWS2 Scores NEW S2 Sc ores Electr Electronic onic Car Care e Not Notes es
ethelcare.co.uk ethelcar e.co.uk ETHELsmarthub
Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.
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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 16 | PAGE 45
TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE
Arquella's AIDA Data Platform Lotus Care Technology Arquella is proud to release our first version of the AIDA data platform. We are committed to improving the quality of nurse call reporting by integrating cloud-based technology with advanced hardware. This development means that all of your data is easily accessible from any internet device. Our technology is even compatible with some existing nurse call systems. With the easy to read 'Dashboard', you see a brief overview of all your current calls on one simple screen. With a simple click you are able to access more detail easily. Choose rooms, zones, call types, dates and times, you can evidence the care that your residents receive with total ease. All of the data available is easily saved as a report, perfect for your CQC requirements. You
don't need any Arquella equipment to access Dashboard and Reports, our web browser interface gives you instant access onsite or offsite, complete with login control. You control who sees zones, sites or groups of homes, bringing local and national reporting with just one click. We recognise that your care teams deliver excellent care, and we are committed to supporting you in capturing those moments. This is why we strive to provide you with the best technology to gather detailed evidence of the care you deliver. Arquella's future-proof solutions keeps you up to date with all future releases, giving you peace of mind and the ability to 'Capture Moments of Care'. Please call or email us so we can show how AIDA can help you. See the advert on this page for details.
Plexus Innovation Provides GUARDIAN® To Help Safeguard Care Homes Plexus Innovation has forged links with Careline Lifestyles to take one of the job’s pressures off the nursing team at a time that is intense in the industry. Ian Murray and Steve Todd, directors of Plexus Innovation, are successfully rolling out its innovative GUARDIAN® technology. They were keen, during such unprecedented times, that a care company benefitted with no initial cost implications. GUARDIAN® is a remote, automated measurement and alert system that focuses on environmental data including temperature. Ideal in reducing the risk of legionella and ensuring temperature in water or refrigeration units is at an optimum level to protect health, Plexus Innovation’s technology comprises of a combination of hardware, with remote monitoring software. Plexus Innovation supplied training to Careline Lifestyle staff, enabling the user to simply plug in and activate the hardware in seconds, putting the data live onto the portal managed by the experienced team at Plexus Innovation. Provided initially for free, the arrangement covers nine of Careline Lifestyle’s homes across the North East. GUARDIAN® is now monitoring 37 measurement points, including medical fridges and ambient room temperatures, which must be kept at compliant levels. Ian said: “GUARDIAN® is cost effective, reliable and reduces risk. We are delighted to be remotely monitoring for Careline, where lack of compliance can be of detriment to
medications, dispensed to the people they care for. “Previously these critical assets would be checked manually, which leaves room for human error when people are busy or under pressure. Using GUARDIAN® the nurses can get on with looking after the people in their care and not worry about this detail. Our system identifies compliance issues, enabling us to keep clients informed, saving time, effort and often money! “Plexus Innovation can really help and support much of the health, social housing, care and even the hospitality industry perfectly.” Based in the North East, Careline Lifestyle is a leading independent provider of high quality nursing and residential care specialising in acquired brain injuries, neurological, mental health needs, learning and physical disabilities for persons over 18 years of age in addition to providing nursing, residential and social care for the elderly. Kirsty Nealis, Head of Care Delivery at Careline Lifestyles said: “With the extra pressures brought about by COVID-19 we couldn’t be more grateful for this GUARDIAN® helping hand to ensure our compliance measurements are done quickly, properly and even better, remotely. “We are always looking at innovative new ways to improve our services which frees up staff, allowing them more time to support our residence. “ “Thank you to Ian and Steve of Plexus Innovation for the free installation and remote monitoring over these first few months of a new and trying challenge!” More information on GUARDIAN® is available at www.plexus-innovation.com
The NurseAlert pressure mat has been one of the most successful floor pressure mats due to it being non slip and carpeted which makes it feel very natural under a residents foot. Lotus Care Technology Ltd have many other fall saving devices that can give you peace of mind whilst caring for this at risk of falls. Having many years of experience in
fitting and maintaining Nurse Call Systems helps the guys at Lotus Care Technology understand that every home is different and has different needs. They can specify not only the best system for the environmental factors in the home but also take into consideration the best products that will make your carers and nurses jobs that little bit easier. Visit lctuk.com for details.
Without QCS we wouldn’t have been rated as an ‘outstanding service’ Rupert Stocks Registered Manager, Guyatt House
Join over 86,000WEXMWƼIHYWIVWREXMSR[MHI8LIUK’s leading bespoke TSPMGMIWTVSGIHYVIWERHQEREKIQIRXXSSPOMXWJSVXLIcare sector
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Start your free trial today at www.qcs.co.uk or call 0330 8087 606
The Carer Digital is delivered to our readers online every week. This new online edition is available online for the duration of the COVID...
Published on Jul 29, 2020
The Carer Digital is delivered to our readers online every week. This new online edition is available online for the duration of the COVID...