The Carer Digital - Issue #30

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W W W. T H E C A R E R U K . C O M

The Carer Digital



Issue 30

Pilot Testing Scheme for Safer Care Home Visits Launched

The government has instigated a trial scheme in England, where designated family members and friends are regularly tested for coronavirus, so they can visit residents inside the care home without screens. The pilot is taking place in around 20 care homes across Hampshire, Cornwall and Devon and will be rolled out more widely in December in time for Christmas. Regular testing will be offered to one family member or friend per resident, which – when combined with other infection-control measures such as PPE – will support meaningful visits. These will enable, where possible, indoor visits without a screen to take place while reducing the risk to care home residents, staff and visitors. Visitors will be offered either PCR tests which they can do at home, or the new 30-minute rapid lateral flow tests (LFTs), which can be administered in person at

care homes before a visit. Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: "I know how heart-breaking restricting visits to care homes has been, not only for residents, many of whom will feel disoriented and confused by the situation, but also their loved ones who aren’t able to simply hug each other to support them in this difficult time. "Thanks to the expanding testing capacity we have in place we can now begin to trial a new way to allow safer visits to take place and prevent the spread of COVID-19. I must stress this is only possible if the public takes the right actions now to bring the transmission rate under control while national restrictions are in place."



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 News that care home residents will be able to enjoy visits before Christmas has been warmly greeted. As our front page story confirms, family members or friends of those living in care homes will be given Covid tests to enable visits as part of a government pilot scheme launched earlier this week (16 November). Just to recap, the pilot is taking place in around 20 care homes across Hampshire, Cornwall and Devon where regular testing will be offered to one family member or friend per resident, which, when combined with other infectioncontrol measures will support meaningful visits. The distress and heartache separation from loved ones has caused has been incalculable, and has become one of the most talked about topics during the pandemic. There are concerns regarding the timing. The pilot scheme which takes place on 20 homes is, as the Independent Care Group (ICG) says, “perilously close” to Christmas, and all trial schemes take time to collate and assess data. Furthermore, the “Covid landscape” changes daily, and a further concern that I have is the prospect of residents being able to see loved ones at one of the most celebrated occasions year could dramatically be withdrawn, causing even further heartache. I have often said that the government does find itself between a rock and a hard place. There is enormous pressure to open up care homes for visiting. However, an article in this issue raises even further concerns regarding a dramatic increase in deaths in Covid related care homes in just one week. They are indeed alarming figures. However, the harm and risks to the health and wellbeing of residents brought on by the loneliness and isolation of lockdown and not being able to see their loved ones is evident. The government has very difficult decision to make once the data is collected on the pilot scheme, but again I would echo the sentiments of the ICG and ensure that the scheme “rolled out” in time for Christmas. The pain of separation after months and months of isolation will be for some residents and family members too much to bear. The government’s handling of PPE equipment has been nothing short of a national scandal. I have only read the same reports that you probably have, but they do not appear to have been disputed. (See page 11).


Peter Adams

As the crisis unfolded readers will know that we here at THE CARER increased the fre-

quency of our publication and also created what we are delighted to say, is this, our highly successful weekly digital edition (please do sign up) We saw first hand how many companies rallied to the crisis, dramatically changing their working practices, operating 24/7 to produce PPE equipment. This enabled the sector to continue to provide safe care, confident that supply chains could be relied upon and that there was enough equipment. News that the government then rushed to spend £18 billion to source equipment that was available here in the country from established companies, and used companies that had no experience whatsoever of supplying PPE equipment is as I say a national scandal. Just to put some perspective, one “middleman” it is alleged received £21 million, for a PPE business he had only just set up. To raise £21 million in taxes 4600 people on the average working wage have to work for a whole year! There are also allegations of cronyism. Reports state that £12 billion was spent on companies with no relevant experience. Just imagine how much could have been saved had the government engaged with professional established companies. I suspect the scandal will be the tip of the iceberg, it will be very interested to see how much of this PPE equipment has got to the frontline, and the quality and standard of said equipment. I have previously said that there will be a “day of reckoning” when a public enquiry takes place on the government’s handling of the crisis, and I sincerely hope that the wasted taxpayer money, which could have been far better spent with established and professional companies who rallied to support the sector in the early days of the Covid crisis, many we are delighted to say who have been promoting with us here at the CARER. Once again we are delighted to include some wonderfully uplifting stories from care homes throughout the country so please do keep them coming, I can always be contacted at

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Pilot Testing Scheme for Safer Care Home Visits Launched (...CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) "By respecting social distancing and staying at home as much as possible we will help reunite families and friends with loved ones in care homes as quickly as possible. "We will be encouraging and supporting care homes to facilitate visits to go ahead in a COVID-secure way wherever possible." Minister for Care Helen Whately said: "The pandemic has torn many lives apart but few have been more affected than people living in care homes and their families. I know visits from loved ones are what makes life worth living for many care home residents, yet these have been few and far between over the last few months. "Visits with a screen or window are better than nothing for many, but they are too confusing or simply impossible for people with advanced dementia. "That’s why on Monday we are starting visitor testing, firstly in around 20 care homes across Hampshire, Cornwall and Devon. Each resident will be able to have one relative or friend who can be their ‘key visitor’ who will take a COVID test, and then be able to come for an indoor visit without a screen. "COVID is a cruel disease that takes those who are most vulnerable, particularly older people, and it’s hard to stop it spreading in people’s homes, whether that’s a family home or even in a care home. That’s why

there have had to be restrictions on visiting, but also why we are putting care home visitors front of the queue as we bring more tests on stream. "As Christmas approaches, I want to bring an end to the pain of separation and help care homes bring families and loved ones together. The launch of visitor testing is a crucial step to making that happen. "The pilot, which forms part of plans to roll out mass testing technology across the country, has been made possible thanks to a huge expansion in the country’s testing capacity, which currently stands at over 500,000 per day. "Each care home receiving LFTs will receive a box of 675 initially and will be given access to more as required. "It will take place in local authorities with lower transmission rates to ensure it can be done as safely as possible and care staff are being trained to ensure tests are administered safely and accurately. "It will further develop the evidence base for how testing with fast, reliable COVID-19 tests can be delivered at scale. "If successful, care home testing will be rolled out in a phased way across the country. "Any decision on a national roll-out will be taken in light of the latest available data on transmission rates as a result of national COVID-19 restrictions." Care providers have welcomed the announcement promising that care and nursing home residents will be able to enjoy visits from their

loved ones before Christmas. But they have urged the Government to ditch the pilot scheme and urgently introduce visitor testing at all homes straight away. The Independent Care Group (ICG) said it was welcome news for all care providers. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: "Separating care and nursing home residents from their loved ones for a prolonged period has been one of the most distressing aspects of the coronavirus pandemic and has been very damaging for both parties' mental health and wellbeing. "Providers are very keen to enable visiting again but of course want to do so in the safest way possible for the residents, families and staff at the homes. "Our pleasure at this pledge is only tempered by the fact that we have had Government promises before and they have failed to materialise. "We question whether we need to have the pilot programme - which has only just started at 20 homes. By the time that pilot has been completed and the results considered we will be getting perilously close to Christmas. Our advice would be to press ahead with getting testing kits and training out to the homes as soon as possible and not delay any further.”

Betty Moves Into Husband Kens Care Home Because She ‘Couldn’t Live Without Him’ To be separated after over 70 years of devoted marriage is a distressing blow. When 96-year-old Kenneth Meredith needed to move into a care home, he left behind the person who had been by his side for that lifetime, his dedicated wife, Betty. Current restrictions made it difficult for the couple to see each other, and so 91-year-old Betty decided to act. She hatched a plan with the super caring staff at Bourn View Care Home in Bournville, Birmingham, and moved in without telling Kenneth! There have been few secrets between the couple in all the decades, but Betty knew this would bring their life back together, and maintain part of their vows, to have and to hold each other. Everyone was in on the plan, and Betty’s phone calls to Kenneth were actually from her room in the care home where she was isolating, awaiting a negative Covid-19 test result that meant she could join the home’s ‘bubble’. The amazing staff at the home worked with family members to

arrange a surprise and romantic reunion meal for the loved-up pair in the home’s restaurant, complete with red roses, scattered petals and an array of love heart balloons. The moment Kenneth spotted Betty, he sped towards her in delight for an emotional hug. “Have you come to get me?” Kenneth said. “No” replied Betty, “I’ve moved in! It’s you and me, are you happy? All these kind people have done all this for us.” Bourn View Well-being and Activities Co-ordinator, Rosie Boshell, said, “When I heard Betty was moving in and her family had asked for a video of their reunion, I wanted to make it extra special for them, decorating our restaurant and arranging a romantic meal. It was so emotional and heart-warming to see; everyone was in tears of happiness and joy for them!”


Mental Wellbeing in Care Homes: How Care Homes are Managing with the UK Second Lockdown Written by Karlo Jacutan on behalf of Safe Harbor ( Another lockdown for the UK means more residents and care home staff are in a dangerous situation regarding their own mental wellbeing. The recent implementation of the second lockdown in the UK was established on the 2nd of November due to the high rise of COVID-19 cases throughout the UK. The government has been urged to incorporate a strong featured support for care homes due to high probability of mental health being endangered, due to lack of family visits and support, as well as potential high pressure of care delivery of staff.

WHAT ARE THE IMPACTS OF THE SECOND LOCKDOWN IN CARE HOMES? UK Care homes have limited visits since the start of the pandemic in order to protect elderly residents from the ongoing virus. With the second lockdown currently in place and set until 2nd of December, care homes may further suffer from the scarcity of support provided to them by the UK government, leading to issues regarding loneliness, safety and mental wellbeing. Doreen Tilly, according to Metro, expressed a heart-breaking statement 8 months from the start of the first lockdown. Stated that she “wanted to die” under isolated care. From this statement, it seems as the support provided by the government, or lack thereof, has presented a detrimental effect towards residents within care homes. However, recently the UK government has established a new press release to highlight the new guidance regarding the support of safer care home visits during lockdown, assisting those in isolation within care homes.

HAS THE IMPLEMENTATIONS SET BY THE GOVERNMENT HELPED CARE HOMES WITH WORKLOAD AND MENTAL HEALTH, FOR BOTH STAFF AND RESIDENTS? Published in November 4th, this guideline shows that government guidelines in securing a safer method of care home visitation is going into the right direction. In summary, the guidance options for safer care home visits could include:

• Screened visits where visitors and residents enter different entrances to avoid contact. • Virtual visits. • Outdoor visits - accessed without anyone going through a shared building. • Visits at windows. Care homes around the UK are now using this guideline in the hopes of better well-being management for their current residents. Colin Drury, reporter from Independent, recently covered an article that discussed the new sealed-glass pods applied to care homes to ensure a safer environment and for visits to become more accessible, therefore residents’ well-being are better cared for. In some cases, it’s beginning to become a lot more efficient for care homes to follow these guidelines in order to provide easier and better care for their residents.

HOW ARE STAFF HELPING ISOLATED RESIDENTS IN COPING WITH LONELINESS? UK care homes are fortunately utilising better health guidelines and regulations for the benefit of creating a safer environment and improved care for their residents. With the second lockdown currently taking place, there has been further pressure for care homes in creating a safer environment for both residents and staff. All care homes generally follow two guidelines for health and safety, which are Public Health England (PHE), which covers infection control and staff safety, and Care Quality Commission (CQC), which covers resident safety. With the event of the pandemic harshly affecting the healthcare industry, these regulations allowed staff to become much safer in caring for the residents due to the mandatory equipment used during working hours such as face masks, gloves and hand sanitizers. Different methods for helping isolated residents have been implemented for each care home. Safe Harbor has continued to celebrate certain occasions to keep resident spirits high. In recent months, Safe Harbor featured the celebration of a war veteran’s 100th birthday at Haversham House Care Home. Furthermore, Country Court has applied a schedule for video/phone calling in order for residents to keep in contact with their loved ones, an outstanding form of service that allows staff to further help residents with their own well-being during the lockdown. It is safe to assume that we are heading in the right direction for efficient support and care for isolated residents.

Record £200,000 of PPE Training Donated to Healthcare Workers staff that have been the driving force in the fight against COVID-19. The past few months have been an incredibly challenging time for all those with a responsibility to provide care, and our course was designed to help those people to feel confident in their use of PPE so that they could get on with the task at hand. We are delighted to have been able to help in this small way as part of the nation’s response to the pandemic. We are also proud to be recognised as a Skills for Care endorsed training provider, a trusted quality mark only awarded to the best learning and development providers within the social care sector.” Lori Barber-Field, Project Manager at social care education charity Skills for Care, said: “In recognition of High Speed Training’s commitment to learning and development for the social care sector, Skills for Care has awarded the company endorsement.” For more information and guidance related to COVID-19, simply visit

Ilkley-based High Speed Training has announced it has provided more than £200,000 of PPE training free of charge to social care and frontline staff during the pandemic, its biggest ever charitable donation. The new ‘PPE Training for Healthcare Workers’ course launched earlier this year and received almost 1,500 advance sign-ups ahead of going live. It is designed to build on existing knowledge of PPE among health and social care workers, and provided immediate support to volunteers including retired NHS workers that came forward to scale up the workforce. In recognition of High Speed Training’s commitment to the health and social care sector and following the milestone donation to support workers in the fight against COVID-19, social care education charity Skills for Care has endorsed the company as a recommended online training provider. Dan Jordan, CEO, at High Speed Training said: “We would like to share our thanks with all the frontline

Harefield Care Home Resident Made Poppies to Honour Brave Souls At HC-One’s The Harefield care home, in Middlesex, they wanted to honour all of the brave souls who gave the ultimate sacrifice in the war to protect our freedoms. To celebrate their courage, Colleagues and Resident Barbara Hawkins created poppies. Using materials as simple as felt and pipe cleaners, they made touching tributes to all fallen brothers and sisters. Barbara adored making the poppies. This was a fun exercise to not only keep her mind and hands active but to serve as a symbol to every-

body who gave their tomorrow for our today. Home Manager, Mary Nadeem, commented, “It was delightful to see Barbara so happy. Her smiling face was touching to see.” Barbara, pictured, loved making the poppies. She thought the end results were absolutely lovely and loved putting her hands to good use. Mary continued, “This was a brilliant idea of marking Remembrance Day.”


NHS Continuing Healthcare Failing To Provide Care For Most Vulnerable, Says Ombudsman Vulnerable people with complex care needs are footing the bill for care that should be covered by the NHS, according to a new report by the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO). Incorrect and delayed decisions about NHS-funded care packages are having a devastating impact on people’s lives, leaving some without essential care, while some people are having to pay out hundreds of thousands of pounds in care costs while they wait for decisions. Complaints to the Ombudsman about NHS continuing healthcare funding (CHC) have shown repeated failings in the way local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) assessed people’s care needs and funded their care packages. Some complainants had made huge financial sacrifices to pay for a family member’s care. Others spent years without the care they needed because their local CCG assessed their needs incorrectly. Many have experienced stress, anxiety and ill-health as a result. Mr V from London complained to the Ombudsman after his mother, who needed 24-hour care after having a stroke, was not provided with a care plan or sufficient funding to cover her care needs. This meant Mr V’s family had to take on some of the caring responsibilities themselves and fund an additional carer for 119 hours a week for more than two years. The Ombudsman found the CCG’s failings placed a huge financial and emotional burden on Mr V and his family. Following intervention by the Ombudsman, the CCG refunded Mr V for the care it should have provided his mother, which totalled over £250,000. A complex care system Accessing care from the complex CHC system can be stressful for those

managing a long-term illness, deteriorating health condition or caring responsibilities. PHSO’s report says it is vital that CCGs help people understand their rights and explain how to raise concerns if their needs are not met. CCGs can review previously unassessed periods of ill health to see if someone should have received CHC-funded care, and reimburse them so they are not left out of pocket. Ombudsman Rob Behrens, said: Our casework demonstrates that failing to provide vulnerable people with the care they are entitled to causes huge suffering, as well as financial harm, for them and their families. NHS CCGs must improve communication with patients and families and properly train staff to make sure they get continuing healthcare funding decisions right first time. The Ombudsman is calling on NHS England and the Department for Health and Social Care to clarify what CCGs’ obligations are through national guidance. PHSO has made recommendations to improve the CHC system, which include providing comprehensive training for frontline staff and better communication with patients and their families. These changes will support the CHC workforce to properly follow the National Framework so they deliver consistent, high quality care packages that meet individuals’ needs. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, CHC assessments were paused from March to September 2020. This has created a backlog of cases that NHS staff are now working through. It remains to be seen what the impact of the second wave of the pandemic will be on NHS CHC over the coming weeks and months. Nonetheless, the findings of the report show how vital it is that CHC assessments are dealt with promptly and effectively so that vulnerable people are not left without care.

Lanterns Light Up the Lives of Care Home Residents While fireworks would normally light up the sky on November 5th, for a West Sussex care home there was a gentler glow in the garden this year. Croft Meadow in Steyning has been chosen as one of eight care homes in the region to be a part of The Lantern House arts programme, which saw two local artists place their award-winning lanterns in the gardens of residential care homes. The project, which has received support from the Arts Council National Lottery Project, is designed to literally bring a little light to care settings that have had to withdraw from much of community life to protect their residents from COVID-19. The lanterns will continue to shine in Croft Meadow’s garden until 12 November. The artists behind the project also sent the home a lantern pack so that they can make a star lantern with residents to hang in the home until

spring. Sarah Parsons of The Lantern House said: “We had the idea for the project back in June when we saw the situation that had occurred during lockdown for care homes. We knew the likelihood of a similar scenario coming back in the autumn for them and we wanted to do what we could to bring some fun and light to people who couldn’t go out to find it. We are so pleased and grateful to the Arts Council for supporting this project.” Melanie Jupp, activities champion at Croft Meadow, which is operated by Shaw healthcare, said: “Care homes are a cornerstone of our community and so the harsh reality of having to withdraw from local life in recent months has been a blow to us all. To be considered for this lovely arts project not only makes us feel remembered but literally brings a little light back in to the lives of all who live and work here.”


Deep-Cleaning Lessons Care Homes Can Learn from Hospitals to Limit the Spread of COVID-19 The coronavirus pandemic will trigger a permanent shift in the way the care industry approaches deep-cleaning and decontamination. Tautvydas Karitonas, Head of Research and Development at Inivos (, considers the challenges that care homes are facing amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and what lessons they can learn from colleagues in the healthcare sector. There is no denying that care facilities across the UK have been badly hit by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. To protect residents and care professionals alike, many care home operators are having to consider significant changes to the way their facilities function – and should look to colleagues in the healthcare sector for cues on the steps to take.

MAKE THE MOST OF AVAILABLE TECHNOLOGY Since the outbreak of coronavirus, there has been an increase in demand for decontamination technology outside of hospital use. Unlike hospitals, which have specialist decontamination practices in place, most care homes solely rely on regular ‘manual’ cleaning by hand to keep spaces free from potentially harmful pathogens. However,

although important, manual cleaning is not sufficient on its own when it comes to reducing risk of infection – this is largely due to unavoidable human error. Therefore, care homes should deploy more robust measures to ensure effective decontamination that keeps the spread of virus to a minimum. Unlike manual cleaning, decontamination practices that use Hydrogen Peroxide Vapour (HPV) and Ultraviolet-C (UV-C) technology have the ability to ensure that entire spaces are decontaminated and free of the virus within a matter of minutes or hours. In simplified terms, the technology fills the area with either HPV or UV-C light, which work by breaking down the lipid (fat) outer layer of the organism and destroying the genetic material within - ultimately obliterating 99.9999% of the virus - also known as >log 6 reduction. As a result, health professionals can feel confident that micro-organisms have been eradicated. Care homes should also look to harness this clinical technology to minimise the risk of viral spread within facilities.

UNDERSTAND PATIENT FLOW TO IDENTIFY ADDITIONAL DEEP-CLEANING AND DECONTAMINATION OPPORTUNITIES Undoubtedly, there are some unavoidable differences in how hospitals and care homes function. Although there are exceptions, hospitals tend to have larger spaces and more routine patient turnover than care facilities – either through discharge to home or care, or while patients are undergoing testing or treatment in other areas of the hospital. Despite the differences, care homes can benefit from reviewing how residents move in and out of the facility to maximise the potential opportunities for decontamination procedures. Once care home facility managers understand how long different

spaces within the building are unoccupied, and when, it becomes significantly easier to identify opportunities to deep clean and how to harness technology to do so. UV-C technology can decontaminate a space in a matter of minutes, rather than hours, meaning it is ideal for rapid decontamination while patients are in other areas of the building. HPV technology, on the other hand, has a longer decontamination cycle but is better able to eradicate micro-organisms from all folds and corners of material, as well as the room itself – making it best suited to a terminal clean of rooms between patients. Given the UK’s ageing population, being able to confidently map and manage patient flow to enable deep cleaning will only become more beneficial, particularly as care facilities need to house an increasing number of residents at any one time.

MOVING FORWARD This pandemic has taken hospitals, businesses and even governments by surprise, and created unprecedented difficulties in all industries. Therefore, it is to be expected that the care industry, too, faces new challenges and must carefully consider its’ direction of future travel. Indeed, COVID-19 has raised the profile and importance of improving infection prevention and control practices in care homes. To ensure that any future pandemics are not met with the same level of uncertainty, new approaches to decontamination may be necessary. HPV and UV-C are prime examples of how, through different technologies, we can adapt and create solutions that work in tandem with the valuable efforts of care professionals and cleaning professionals, to ultimately provide a safe environment and mitigate against potential viral spread.

Centenarian Celebrations at West Sussex Care Home There was a duet of celebrations at an East Preston care home with two residents enjoying birthday celebrations – despite being in lockdown once again. Josephine Harwood celebrated her 100th birthday at The Martlets care home alongside 93-year-old Christine Northeast. The residents were treated to a tea party with family, friends and local councillor Elizabeth Linton joining the party via Zoom. Born in London to musician parents, Josephine, an only child, was a keen ice-skater. After leaving school, Josephine worked in a London department store which was well known for making hats for The Queen. She later met and married Lawrence and they went on to have four children, living in several towns across the south coast. Despite being partially blind in both eyes, Josephine remains very independ-

ent and active within the home. Joining Josephine in her celebrations was fellow resident, Christine Northeast, who turned 93. Chris, as she liked to be known, was one of 12 children born to her parents in Oxfordshire. During the War, Chris spent much of her time working in factories before becoming a full-time mother for her three children. She moved into the home five years ago. Alison Worms, home manager at The Martlets - which is operated by Shaw healthcare - said: “Even though the celebrations are slightly different to what we would have planned due to current restrictions, we hope both Josephine and Chris enjoyed themselves. They are both wonderful characters and everyone loves hearing the stories they have to tell.”


Need for Caution as Home Deaths Grow

A shock increase in Covid-19 care and nursing home deaths has prompted providers to urge the community to follow the lockdown rules to prevent more following. Latest figures show that 280 people died from Covid-19 in care and nursing homes in the week up to 6th November – a jump from 168 the previous week. The Independent Care Group (ICG) which represents care providers, said it was vital people followed the lockdown rules and that the Government supported care and nursing homes. It has also warned of growing worries over the mental health of residents who are not getting visitors. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “This is quite a shocking increase and our thoughts go to all those who have lost loved ones to this dreadful pandemic. “The care of older and vulnerable people is once again a front line in the fight against coronavirus and we are going to need concerted action from the public and support from the Government to prevent further losses. “We appeal to everyone to keep following the lockdown rules. As infection rates go up, death rates are inevitably going to go up too. The only way we can get through this is to get that infection rate down.

“We must never forget that one death from Covid-19 is a death too many and each loss is a tragedy – a

loved one, a husband or wife, father or mother, brother or sister, aunt or uncle or friend.” Today’s figures from the Office for National Statistics show 280 people died from Covid-19 in care and nursing homes across England and Wales in the week ending 6th November, up from 168 the previous week and 153 the week before that. Some 16,442 people died from Covid-19 in these homes from 28th December to 6th November. The ICG is increasingly worried about the mental health of people in care and nursing homes as the pandemic goes on and they are deprived of visits from family and friends. “The impact on their mental health is growing and we are fearful that some may get to the point where they almost give up,” Mr Padgham added. “We desperately need to find a way to enable visits again and are pleased that the Government has begun a pilot for tested visitors to be allowed in. We need to press on with that and get it rolled out across the country. Of course, there are risks to allowing visits, but there are mounting risks to the health and wellbeing of our residents from not allowing them too.”

Residents at Hertfordshire Care Home Overwhelmed with Community Messages to Mark World Kindness Day Residents at a Hertfordshire care home have been left overwhelmed after receiving a flood of cards, letters and poems from the community and beyond to mark World Kindness Day (November 13th). Following an invitation to send in messages of kindness for the residents at Foxholes Care Home, staff have been left shocked at the outpouring of engagement from the Hitchin community, as well as from as far afield as Canada, the USA and Australia. Residents were delighted to open their cards and read the messages that were sent in, which took on an array of creative forms including drawings, poems, inspiring speeches, and heartfelt letters. Children from Hitchin’s Kingshott School sent in vibrant and uplifting letters wishing everyone at the home a happy World Kindness Day, while other messages reflected on the current lockdown and urged the residents to stay positive and keep smiling. One letter writer noted that, despite not knowing anyone personally at Foxholes, they understand this is a difficult time for care homes and were thinking of them. David Weston, Headmaster of Kingshott School, said “It’s been such a difficult year for everyone. Here at Kingshott, we’re enjoying having the children back at school and some sense of normality but understand that life is still

very difficult for many people, especially during this second lockdown period. We thought it would be beneficial for all if we could help celebrate World Kindness Day by making and sending some cheery messages to the Foxholes residents to help lift their spirits.” Neil Gandecha, estate manager at Foxholes Care Home, said: “We’ve been left amazed at the amount of kind messages sent to the home. The residents enjoyed opening and reading their cards and letters and it certainly left a smile on their faces, so we can’t thank the community enough for getting involved in this simple, yet powerful gesture.” Since March, residents at Foxholes have had to deal with very limited visitation from close family and friends due to the coronavirus pandemic, and with the current national lockdown set to continue until early December, so does the wait to fully reopen the doors at the residential home. Neil continued: “Foxholes is a very community-driven home so for us, having to close our doors and stop visitation has been extremely difficult. In times when you can’t see family and friends due to social distancing and self-isolation, it can become easy to feel disconnected, but Hitchin and beyond have proved once again that we are all in this together. We hope everyone had as much of a positive and uplifting World Kindness Day as our residents did.”

Homes Welcome Visitor Testing Plan Care providers have welcomed the announcement promising that care and nursing home residents will be able to enjoy visits from their loved ones before Christmas. But they have urged the Government to ditch the pilot scheme and urgently introduce visitor testing at all homes straight away. Health Secretary Matt Hancock this morning said visitor testing would be available for care and nursing homes across the country in time for the festive period. The Independent Care Group (ICG) said it was welcome news for all care providers. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: "Separating care and nursing home residents from their loved ones for a prolonged period has been one of the most distressing aspects of the coronavirus pandemic and has been very damaging for both parties' mental health and wellbeing. "Providers are very keen to enable visiting again but of course want to do so in the safest way possible for the residents, families and staff at the homes. "Our pleasure at this pledge is only tempered by

the fact that we have had Government promises before and they have failed to materialise. "We question whether we need to have the pilot programme - which has only just started at 20 homes. By the time that pilot has been completed and the results considered we will be getting perilously close to Christmas. Our advice would be to press ahead with getting testing kits and training out to the homes as soon as possible and not delay any further.”

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Ensuring High Standards of Food Safety in the Care Sector By Food Safety Consultancy Manager Annabel Kyle of STS Food Safety (

All food businesses are required, by law, to handle food safely and serve safe food to the consumer. The importance of food safety increases for care caterers because their consumers are vulnerable to foodborne illness and more likely to experience the most severe symptoms, as is the case with listeriosis. Along with the high mortality rate for listeriosis, it is clear why the bacteria responsible, Listeria monocytogenes, is particularly significant to care caterers. Particularly persistent due to its adaptability, it survives, and can thrive, in low temperatures, can survive in salty and low moisture foods and is hard to remove from surfaces due to its ability to form biofilms. With an extended incubation period, it’s clear why its control is important. The current influx of staff from the hospitality sector (who may not

have experience of care catering) may provide benefits, however, hospitality workers are unlikely to have the specific knowledge and experience relating to Listeria monocytogenes, nutrition or supplements needed in the care sector, so proper training is a must. Listeria monocytogenes is commonly associated with higher risk, ready to eat foods and its controls are similar to those needed for other bacteria, such as E coli O157, Salmonella and Campylobacter. However, due to the slower multiplication of Listeria monocytogenes below 5°C, maintaining the cold chain throughout the food’s journey is of even greater importance than usual. Many E coli O157 controls are also relevant for Listeria monocytogenes, such as storing unwashed fruit and vegetables away from ready to eat foods, washing produce before use, ensuring complex equipment is not used for both raw and ready to eat foods, ensuring other cross contamination preparation controls are in place, and hand washing practices are tip-top. These are all important controls for many other harmful bacteria as well. Among the difficulties in care settings is that the caterer may wish to exclude higher risk foods from menus to protect their customers. However, if someone has eaten a food all their life, is this reasonable? It certainly may not be easy. Caterers can take the necessary care during preparation and handling, maintaining the cold chain throughout, to help ensure these foods are served safely. Care providers can also implement a strict policy on foods brought in by visitors, where controls over temperature and preparation are unknown. Many of these controls can be applied to the control of food allergens too. The Food Information Regulations require caterers to inform their customers accurately of the presence of 14 specific allergens in the foods they serve. At minimum, this could involve using manufac-

turers’ product labels but, if packets are thrown away after use, is this a reliable method? Set recipes and allergen tick sheets, or even allergen labels, are all viable options, provided the information is provided as the dish is served to the customer, meaning caterers must include oils, garnishes, glazes, dressings, etc. Chefs also need to ensure allergen-free meals for customers are prepared carefully, making sure preparation and cooking areas are thoroughly cleaned first and that the same equipment isn’t used for both allergen-free and allergen-containing foods. And what about product substitutions? These could introduce allergens to recipes that were not initially present if not effectively managed. Communication between customer and chef is also of vital importance, something that often takes place via servers. There have been several high-profile cases where allergen sufferers have died as a result of poor communication about allergens and it’s essential that communication channels are open and clear when dealing with any allergen-free meal. Thorough and meaningful training in food safety hazards and controls, such as those described above, is key to ensuring care consumers are protected. Support should be in place to help teams translate their training into practice in the workplace, e.g. via supervision. Regular audits help monitor standards and verify that the HACCP plan is being followed and to help identify issues and correct them before serious problems arise. Audits can be undertaken by trained managers, or external parties. All in all, caterers serving food to consumers in the care sector need to follow existing requirements and guidelines but also take extra care to ensure the highest standards to protect their customers.

Garden City Care Home Named in Pride of Britain Awards Staff at Garden City care home in Letchworth were delighted and proud to be given a special mention by Sir Keir Starmer as part of his nomination for front line care staff at the prestigious Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Awards. The Labour Leader visited the home in September as part of a wider visit to the local area, where he met the Home Manager Melissa McNeilly, as well as members of parent company Quantum Care’s senior team. He wanted to hear first-hand about the experience of working in a care home during the pandemic, and was extremely moved by Melissa’s account of the incredible lengths that the team had gone to in order to provide love, care and support for elderly residents during such difficult times. As part of the ceremony on Sunday evening he said “I want to nominate the incredible carers who’ve been on the front line in this pandemic; looking after our relatives and keeping our country going. Over the summer I had the privilege of meeting the staff and team of the Garden City care home in Letchworth, an incredible group of individu-

als with many, many selfless acts in the toughest of circumstances. They are truly the Pride of Britain” Home Manager Melissa said “We all feel incredibly honoured to have been nominated by Sir Keir Starmer. The team have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to ensure that residents receive the best possible care, and their dedication, courage and resilience has been outstanding. They have always been amazing in my eyes, but to be recognised like this is such a wonderful achievement, and I am so proud of them all”. Maria Ball, Chief Executive of Quantum Care said “I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to Melissa and the team at Garden City Court for such well-deserved recognition. I have been truly humbled by the sheer determination and passion that they have shown each and every day, during what has been the biggest challenge the social care sector has ever faced. On an individual basis and working as teams right across our Quantum Care homes, our staff have been nothing short of exceptional”.

Hampshire Care Home Serves Up Culinary-Themed Scarecrow Win Residents at 21 care homes across the south have proved outstanding in their field by staging a fun contest to make the best scarecrow. Handicrafts were the order of the day as carefully constructed, imaginatively designed creations came to life at Colten Care homes in Dorset, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Sussex. Entries ranged from traditional countryside-type scarecrows stuffed with paper and straw to more ‘refined’ models such as overall winner ‘Hazel Nut the Chef’ from Lymington dementia care home Linden House. Judges declared her the winner after being impressed by her carefully constructed outfit, array of cooking utensils and the thinking behind her. Chris Dimmick, Companionship Team Leader at the Outstanding-rated home, said: “Hazel Nut was a great choice as baking and cooking are popular activities at Linden House. “They prompt residents living with dementia to reminiscence about favourite recipes, share them with each other, and compare traditional and modern techniques.” Runner-up in the competition was an afternoon tea-themed scarecrow scene on display in the garden Tea House at Braemar Lodge in Salisbury. In third place was a Mary Poppins scarecrow made at Wellington Grange in Chichester. At Avon Cliff in Bournemouth, residents unveiled ‘Poppy the PPE Nurse’, a tribute to nurses working

at care homes and hospitals in the frontline of the fight against Covid. Complete with facemask, apron, gloves, shoebags and stethoscope, Poppy was given pride of place in the home’s foyer. Among her first visitors were a couple of ‘TV scarecrow celebrities’: Worzel Gummidge and his love interest Aunt Sally, aka Brian Knight and Sharon Surgeon from the home’s Companionship Team. Sharon said: “The residents wanted to honour Covid nurses wherever they work. They had so much fun making Poppy. Worzel and I thought she deserved a visit from us as an official scarecrow ‘seal of approval’!” Sylvia Williams, who rolled up and sewed paper inside Poppy’s limbs, said: “Everyone joined in with the fun of making her. She’s very good, doesn’t say a word.” Other homes revealed their scarecrows at afternoon teas and Halloween celebrations. At St Catherines View in Winchester, ‘Farmer Giles and his wife’ took up positions in the garden around the home’s red tractor while children at the local Tops day nursery made a toddler scarecrow as part of the home’s entry. At the entrance to Abbey View in Sherborne, ‘The Green Man’ is sharing his legendary message of rebirth and new growth. Residents such as Sheila Sanders and Yvonne Willway spent more than a month painting designs onto fabric, cutting out leaves for his cape, plaiting wool for his beard and covering the home’s lounge

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in hay when it was time to assemble him. Abbey View has also been displaying child-sized scarecrows made by Sherborne School for Girls, Sherborne Primary School and the Little Gryphons toddler group. To complete their entries, homes took and sent in photos of their scarecrows to Colten Care’s head office where members of the Operations Team formed a judging panel. Operations Director Elaine Farrer said: “Our friendly scarecrow competition is an annual fixture on our calendar and is always hugely enjoyable. Residents have a great time designing and preparing their entries. It’s also an opportunity to retain links with friends and contacts in the community. “Huge congratulations to Linden House on their win. It’s never an easy task to pick a winner but the main thing is that it is a lovely fun way to share in a project and keep up those handicraft skills.”

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Anger Grows Over Governments £18bn PPE Contract Scandal

Anger is growing following a critical report into UK Government procurement during the Covid-19 crisis which has revealed that some firms were referred by officials, ministers’ offices, members of the House of Lords, MPs and health professionals through a “high-priority” lane. The National Audit Office (NAO) report examined 8,600 contracts awarded by the Government between January and July, and found that from March to July 2020 the Government awarded around £10.5 billion of new contracts without any competition under emergency procurement regulations. The total cost of the 8600 contracts is £18billion, of which £17.3billion were new contracts rather than contract extensions. Most of the money, £12.3billion, went on PPE, with the remainder going on other equipment and virus testing, and according to reports companies with political connections were directed to a “high-priority” channel for UK government contracts, where bids were ten times more likely to be successful.

Around 10% of the suppliers referred to the channel by a political contact were awarded a PPE contract, the NAO reported. Suppliers without such links, by contrast, had only a 1% chance of winning a contract. Furthermore, according to reports a Spanish businessman received £21 million for securing PPE equipment to fulfill two U.K. government contracts for the NHS. Raising the matter in Parliament Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer asked Prime Minister Boris Johnson in the Commons: 'Does the Prime Minister think that £21million for a middle man was an acceptable use of taxpayers' money?' Labour MP Rachel Reeves said that 'a select group have been given privileged access to the government', adding: 'The country deserves to have confidence their money is being spent effectively by the government and to know without doubt that friends and donors to the Conservative Party aren't profiting from this pandemic.'

People with Learning Disabilities Had Higher Death Rate from COVID-19 A report, Deaths of people identified as having learning disabilities with COVID-19 in England in the Spring of 2020 examined data from The English Learning Disabilities Mortality Review (LeDeR) and NHS England’s COVID-19 Patient Notification System (CPNS) which records deaths in hospital settings. It found 451 per 100,000 people registered as having a learning disability died with COVID-19 between 21 March and 5 June, a death rate 4.1 times higher than the general population after adjusting for other factors such as age and sex. But as not all deaths in people with learning difficulties are registered on these databases, researchers estimated the real rate may have been as high as 692 per 100,000, 6.3 times higher. Deaths were also spread much more widely across the age spectrum among people with learning disabilities, with far greater mortality rates in younger adults, compared to the general population. The death rate for people aged 18 to 34 with learning disabilities was 30 times higher than the rate in the same age group without disabilities, researchers found. Among people with learning disabilities, the rate of COVID-19 deaths for adults in residential care was higher than the rates of COVID-19 deaths of adults with learning disabilities generally. This difference is likely in part to reflect the greater age and disability in people in resi-

dential care. People with learning disabilities are more likely to have other physical health problems such as obesity and diabetes, and certain kinds of learning disability, such as Down’s syndrome, can make people more vulnerable to respiratory infections, which can increase their risk of dying from COVID-19. Professor John Newton, Director of Health Improvement at Public Health England, said, "It is deeply troubling that one of the most vulnerable groups in our society suffered so much during the first wave of the pandemic. We must do everything possible to prevent this happening again. "There are now regular tests in care homes to make sure cases of coronavirus can be quickly identified and isolated, even if people do not recognise the symptoms themselves. "But with cases developing across the country, it is essential to practice rigorous infection control if you are in contact with someone with a learning disability, whether or not they live in a care home. "Wash your hands, wear a mask and keep a safe distance. The fewer people you meet, the more you’ll stop the spread. "A learning disability is a significantly reduced ability to understand new or complex information and learn new skills and a reduced ability to cope independently which started before adulthood, with a lasting effect on development. That means that people with learning disabili-

ties often may find it harder to manage basic everyday skills, and rely upon support for many tasks, including communicating, managing money or looking after themselves. "People with learning disabilities are likely to have had difficulty recognising symptoms of COVID-19, or following government advice about getting tested, self-isolation, social distancing and infection prevention and control, the report says. It may also be more difficult for people caring for them to recognise the onset of symptoms if these cannot be communicated." Helen Whately, Minister of State for Social Care, said, "Every death from COVID-19 has been a tragedy, and my deepest sympathies go out to everyone who has lost loved ones during the pandemic. I know how difficult this pandemic has been for people with a learning disability and those who care for them. "A third of those with learning disabilities who sadly died were living in residential care. There is now regular testing of staff and residents in care homes, and testing has also been rolled out to supported living settings in high risk areas. "This report adds to our knowledge of COVID-19 and how those with learning disabilities are affected by this cruel disease. I am asking SAGE to review the findings and give advice on what more we can do to keep people safe."

30 Years Service at Stocks Hall Burscough Happy 30th Year Anniversary to Home Manager Sammi! Recently at Stocks Hall Burscough Home, those living at the Home and staff, celebrated the Home’s Manager, Sammi’s 30th year of working at the Home – what a fantastic achievement! Staff secretly organised a delivery of a beautiful bouquet of flowers and Deputy Manager & Lead Nurse, Marlene organised a party to celebrate Sammi’s wonderful time as Manager. Everyone enjoyed a delivery of pizzas and sweet treats and finished the day off with a special 30 years cake.

Manager Sammi said, “I would like to thank our Director, Mrs. Lace and Operations Manager, Sam Potter for always being so supportive and to my wonderful staff for making the day so special!”… Despite Sammi's protest of ‘not wanting a fuss’ those residing at the Home with her loyal staff packed a lot into the day! Mrs Lace and Sam Potter replied back to Sammi saying "Congratulations Sammi on your 30 years’ service to Stocks Hall and for being a wonderful, passionate and loyal Manager to the Home – THANK YOU! Here's to many more years!"

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Technology Solutions And Dementia Care: What’s Available? projected onto walls and tables. The projections respond to hand and arm movements which help to break through apathy by stimulating both physical and cognitive activity, and encouraging social interaction. Virtual reality (VR) can also provide entertainment and enrichment for people living with dementia. VR activates our sensorimotor contingencies which can fool the brain into believing that we’ve been transported to another world, and that what is happening is real. VR can offer people living with dementia, and in particular care home residents, the chance to go on ‘real-world’ walks and experience places they can no longer visit or may have always wanted to travel to. This technology can in turn vastly improve the quality of life for people living with dementia by helping to recall past memories, reduce aggression and improve interactions with care providers.


For many years, social care leaders haven’t understood or invested in technological solutions, despite the numerous benefits that technology can offer for care provision. While the COVID-19 crisis led to some of the biggest challenges ever seen by the sector, the investment in technology dramatically increased as care providers sought to offer consistent and high quality care while also supporting people diagnosed with COVID-19. James Rycroft, Managing Director at specialist dementia care provider Vida Healthcare, discusses the different technology available to integrate into dementia care and its benefits.

KEEPING ENGAGED As people progress through their dementia journey their needs will change but the requirement for suitable care and enrichment doesn’t diminish. It’s important to make sure the right entertainment is being delivered for each individual, and technology can play a crucial role in supporting care providers in keeping the people they care for engaged. Technological solutions such as sensory equipment, for example magic surfaces and interactive tables, can enable caregivers to provide a fun way to stimulate and engage people living with dementia to move more and interact socially. Sensory equipment can offer a range of interactive experiences including games and lights which can usually be

Not only is it important to keep people living with dementia entertained and enriched, but activity is also crucial. While supporting outdoor activity is highly beneficial, this isn’t always possible and technology can be used in this case. Adapted exercise equipment, such as indoor bikes, which are combined with video and sound can take users on cycling trips through familiar surroundings and childhood memories. Benefits can include improved mobility, faster rehabilitation, increased appetite, reduction in pain and better sleep, alongside better mental and social well-being. Video calling apps have also been crucial in allowing for the continued provision of exercise classes during COVID-19, especially where external trainers are required. Initiatives such as stretching classes which can continue as normal using video calling apps gives people living with dementia the opportunity to try different exercise formats, and socialise with both caregivers and the person leading the class.

of action as we move into winter, and be able to ask any questions they may have. At Vida Healthcare we’ve developed and launched a valuable new app to keep our residents and their families connected during COVID-19 and beyond. The Family Team Talk app was developed to allow families and friends of residents at our care homes to see a snapshot of daily life. The app is user friendly and gives families instant access to catch up on the health and wellbeing of their loved one through posts and updates from staff, videos and images. Launching this app has raised the morale of relatives, residents and staff, and given everyone a greater feeling of connectivity and reassurance. Technology has a huge number of benefits and can support care providers in a range of ways when it comes to delivering specialist dementia care. It’s important that technology is integrated as soon as possible to safeguard services for the future, and ensure high quality care is delivered, especially in the case of future crises arising. For more information about how technology can support people living with dementia and improve dementia care, please visit

KEEPING CONNECTED Technology can also develop and support crucial connections between caregivers, people living with dementia and their loved ones when living in a residential care setting, particularly during a health crisis like COVID-19. Ecare plans allow family members and loved ones of care home residents live access to their health and care plans. This enables key stakeholders to remain involved with the care of their loved one, and to ensure that consent is secured along every step of the care journey. In addition, care home operators should consider establishing webinars to keep family members and loved ones up-to-date with the plan

Spicing Up Life At Wellington Care Home A specially arranged India Day has spiced up life for residents of a dementia care home in Wellington, Somerset. Residents of Camelot House and Lodge spent the day immersed in Indian culture, trying out classic costumes and jewellery, having their hands painted with henna tattoos, and sampling Indian music, dance and traditionally prepared food. Activities co-ordinator, Richard Dempslake, said: “Many of our residents who are living with dementia are well able to imagine that our international theme days are like going on a day’s foreign holiday, and that’s been especially important this year. “They were thrilled by the pop-up cinema we organised showing Bollywood dancing, and thoroughly enjoyed the playlist of Indian music we put together for them. “My colleagues and I entertained them by dressing up in colourful Indian costume including saris, churidar, kurtha, dhoti, dupatta which residents recognised from the Bollywood films.

“We also had interactive games such as ‘match the pair’ with images of animals native to India, and sensory treats featuring Indian spices such as coriander and fragrances like jasmine. “We are lucky in having several staff of Indian descent at Camelot House and Lodge, which means we could provide an authentic international experience with something to appeal to everyone. “It was lovely to see the way our residents entered into the spirit of the day, and we can’t wait to do it again.” For many of Camelot House and Lodge’s residents the highlight of the day was a delicious Indian buffet, with dishes rich in subtle Indian flavours and mostly home-made by Ryju Puthenveettil and Anil George who are on Camelot Care’s nursing team. The flavoursome spread included onion bhaji, samosa, banana chips and jack fruit chips as starters, with south Indian fried rice, chilli chicken and Kerala roasted pork for the main course, and vermicelli milk pudding, gulab jamun and soan papdi as desserts.

SmartSpaces Work with St Teresa's Care Home and Opens ‘Garden Room’ To Support Covid-Safe Visiting

St Teresa's care home in Wimbledon, which provides high quality nursing & residential care to up to 28 people, is proudly announcing the opening of its temporary ‘garden visiting room’. SmartSpaces are proud to work with the Care Home to provide this much needed family support for both the residents and family members. SmartSpaces offers a bespoke design service for their garden rooms so made sure the design meets all the requirements.

The purpose-built wooden cabin is situated in the communal garden at the Home and provides a safe space for relatives to visit residents whilst Covid-19 continues to pose a risk. SmartSpaces designed this build to have a seperate access for the resident and also for the family members. The Home has implemented a wide range of health and safety measures since the pandemic outbreak was declared, which has involved stopping all external visits from the beginning of lockdown, to limited, socially distant visits wearing PPE. The team has been keen to find a way to make visiting more comfortable for residents and their loved ones so has created the temporary garden room. SmartSpaces designed a bespoke space which was both suitable for the residents and family in this testing time. Equipped with a Perspex screen to separate visitors from residents, an intercom to make communicating easyandthe room enables loved ones to get together without increased worry. The room is well insulated andappropriately heated. Home Manager Chris Glynn said; “At a time of great uncertainty we all look to our families for support and lockdown has prevented this personal contact. Technical solutions only have a moderate benefit for our Residents, so we needed something that would provide a more personal experience for Residents & families, plus a solution to an ever changing set of rules. With Smartspaces we were able to design a bespoke space that addressed the unique needs of a Covid secure visit. Visits are now safe-

ly conducted in a warm and comfortable environment, that allow Residents & families to relax, enjoying their time together. It has made the world of difference to our Residents & families, a visible difference to their well-being.” For more information on how SmartSpaces can create a covid safe visiting room, get in touch, or call 0800 6345223


New Campaign Launched to Pay Caring Covid Heroes at Least £20,000 a Year

A major campaign has been launched to ensure qualified staff who work in care homes and domiciliary care in Wales are paid a minimum of £20,000 a year. Mario Kreft MBE, the chair of Care Forum Wales, said they had been condemned to low pay for many years because of the “morally bankrupt” formulas used by local authorities and health boards to calculate the fees for social care. According to Mr Kreft, the heroic response of care workers in saving lives during the coronavirus pandemic had highlighted their true value and it was high time it was recognised by the authorities who commissioned publicly funded social care. It was, he said, a “national disgrace” that the 2020 Fair Pay campaign was necessary but he hoped it would shame the councils and the health boards into taking action to finally ensure that qualified care workers could be paid properly after a quarter of a century of a mismanaged market which has seen social care being treated as a “Cinderella service”. As a result, the frontline workforce had been left behind. The Welsh Government had shown the way earlier this year when they announced a one-off £500 bonus payment for social care staff. It was very welcome recognition and now local authorities and health boards should follow suit by updating their funding formulas so that qualified care workers received at least £20,000 a year as a bare mini-

mum. All those who worked in social care deserved at least the Real Living Wage. One of Mr Kreft’s fears was that the NHS will effectively poach social care staff to cope with the extra demands caused by the second surge of the virus which was already underway. Pay rates in the NHS were historically higher than those available in care homes and domiciliary care because their funding in relative terms was a lot more generous. He is calling for an assurance from the seven health boards in Wales that they will not be recruiting additional staff from care homes and domiciliary care by offering them more money to work for them than they allowed care providers to pay. Mr Kreft said: “Social care staff have risen magnificently to the immense challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic and the public understand better than ever that these people do have important skills and are vital to their communities across Wales. “They are an army of heroes and should be viewed as a value rather than a cost to society. “It is high time that when local authorities and health board commission publicly funded social care services that the formulas they use finally recognise their true value and enable providers to pay frontline staff a minimum of £20,000 a year from April 1 next year. “Existing formulas that use the basic living wage as their benchmark are unacceptable, particularly given what the sector has achieved this year and the support the sector has from the public. “We know from the first wave of the pandemic that the NHS does not have enough staff to run the rainbow hospitals in Wales so the only place that they can go and get people with those sorts of skills is the care sector and the care sector is critically endangered. “There’s evidence from when the Dragon’s Heart Hospital Cardiff during the first wave that they were offering significantly higher rates of pay than what providers -which were commissioned by local authorities and local health boards - were able to pay. “Currently, many of the formulas used to commission publicly funded social care services are predicated on paying at or just above the legal minimum wage to a significant number of people which flies in the face

of the traditional Welsh qualities of fairness and equality. “As a result, we have a system that is self-perpetuating that has created a morally bankrupt vicious circle. “The evidence that commissioners effectively set rates of pay is irrefutable. “In normal times, between 60% and 70% of a care home’s income goes straight out in wages while it’s 80% in domiciliary care – but the percentage has been even higher during the pandemic. “If we lose skilled social care staff to the NHS then the result of that could be that homes could have to temporarily close down and send their residents to the field hospitals which would be counterproductive for everybody concerned as it would pile even more pressure on the beleaguered health service. “I am therefore calling for an urgent assurance that the NHS will immediately refrain from recruiting anybody from social care by paying them higher wages. It wouldn’t take long for care home closures to fill hospital beds at the field hospitals “After all their heroic work during the pandemic, you surely cannot deny that people who work in care homes and those who provide care in people’s own homes deserve a bare minimum of £20,800 a year for a full time equivalent member of staff for a 40 hour seek on £10 an hour . “Money in care workers’ pockets is spent in their local communities which is a vital part of the foundation economy of Wales. “The responsibility for making this happen clearly rests with the 22 local authorities and the seven health boards in Wales. “The tension between a means tested social care service provided by local authorities and the NHS, free at the point of delivery has been exacerbated by unelected health boards without a democratic mandate from the community they serve. “The social care workers in these very communities are in fact a foundation block of the healthcare system in Wales. “We have long endured a tapestry of social care services across Wales which were not only underfunded but also promoted inequality. That tapestry has been held together by social care workers and is now threadbare. “The time for action is now and we must shield social care and save lives this winter and into the future.”


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Tackling Employee Sickness Absence This Winter

By Toyah Marshall, Principal Employment Law Adviser at Ellis Whittam (

HAVE A SICKNESS ABSENCE POLICY The aim of a sickness absence policy is to provide a clear framework for reporting, managing, and recording sickness absence. In your policy, you should set benchmarks, known as trigger points, for unacceptable levels of short and frequent sickness absence. You will also need a separate procedure for dealing with longer term sickness. Setting out your expectations allows genuinely sick employees to know they will be supported during their absence and malingerers that you can – and will – take formal action.

MONITOR ABSENCES AND KEEP RECORDS By keeping a record of all absences, you can identify any patterns or trends and build a complete picture of an employee’s attendance. For example, you may notice that absences always occur at the weekend.


As we enter the winter months, and regardless of COVID-19, it’s sensible to review your approach to dealing with sickness absence in your team. The pandemic has changed modes of working and improved infection control within care homes; however, the fact remains that at this time of year sickness absences can rise due to seasonal ailments. Most of the time, absences will be for legitimate health reasons and necessary for the health and wellbeing of your residents. However, there may be times when someone is malingering, which is when an employee lies or exaggerates their illness or injury to avoid attending work. Both scenarios present headaches for care providers, but here are some top tips when dealing with absences:

Make it clear in your sickness absence policy how employees must inform you that they are not coming into work. Establishing clear rules means that you are informed of all absences; have more time to arrange cover and know when the employee is likely to return to work.

CONDUCT RETURN TO WORK INTERVIEWS AFTER EVERY ABSENCE This is a good way to probe into the reason for absence and explore possible solutions. If the employee was absent due to illness, you can see the nature of this and whether they are fully recovered or if it is part of an ongoing condition. This will determine next steps. If they’re dealing with bereavement or other serious personal concern, you can explore whether their absences could be reduced with flexible working arrangements. If there is a workplace concern deterring them from coming into work, you can take steps to address it. If you suspect that they are malingering, return to work interviews may act as a deterrent and are

also an opportunity to remind your team member of the process if their attendance does not improve.

ASK FOR MEDICAL EVIDENCE If they have a recurring reason each time they are absent, you may wish to ask for medical evidence but remember that typically you will need the employee’s written authorisation. If they decline or are very reluctant to consent to medical evidence, you will need to probe as to why and if they have a good reason for refusing. If they repeatedly continue to refuse, you should write to them explaining that you will need to make decisions based on the evidence available.

INVESTIGATE ANY ALLEGED MISCONDUCT If you suspect that the employee is malingering, you need to conduct a well-thought-out investigation. This allows you to consider the matter fully before deciding whether disciplinary action is necessary.

REMEMBER THE EQUALITY ACT There are different considerations to keep in mind when you are dealing with an employee who has a disability. Under the Equality Act, a worker will be considered disabled if they can show that they suffer from a long-term physical or mental impairment which has a substantial effect on their ability to carry out day-to-day activities, or if they have HIV, cancer or multiple sclerosis. If an employee suffers from stress, anxiety, or depression, they may also be considered disabled for the purposes of the Act. In these cases, you will need to consider whether you can make any reasonable adjustments to their work. If you have concerns about how to manage sickness absences, I recommend you seek legal advice at the earliest opportunity. Toyah Marshall is a Principal Employment Law Adviser at Ellis Whittam ( and supports employers across the health and care sectors.

Tech Allows For Couple To Reunite In Nursing Home Despite COVID-19 restrictions, married couple Cyril and Betty were reunited after not seeing each other for months, thanks to strict safety measures and smart booking systems. When the UK went into national lockdown in March, it became imperative for the care sector to be supported throughout the pandemic. The Access Group’s health and social care division’s key focus was to support care homes and ensure their residents were not lonely and isolated. Social isolation impacts thousands of elderly people in the UK and can lead to depression and a serious decline in physical health and wellbeing. Maintaining levels of interaction with family members and friends is imperative and with the lockdown limitations it led to the rise in popularity of video calls. However, this new technology is not suited to everyone and care homes needed to think of a way to allow family members and friends to see their loved ones in a safe and controlled environment. Taking inspiration from the hospitality sector, The Access Group adapted a booking system to fit in with the requirements of Ashlynn Grange Care Home in Peterborough, which allowed care homes to introduce visitors before the Government changed its guidance to allow visits. Maintaining social distancing using a Perspex screen, Cyril and Betty were able to ‘hold hands’ and enjoy one another’s company. Access Collins for Care allows family and funders to book a scheduled visit or

video call using an automated system, in which care homes can input their own tailored requirements such as: number of tablets available for video calls and choosing buffer times for visitors as well as setting a maximum capacity at one time, to adhere to social distancing rules. Steve Sawyer, managing director of the Access Group’s health and social care division said: “We welcome the change in government guidance to allow for safe care visits. The past few months have been particularly trying for care homes. As the colder months hit and new lockdown restrictions were enforced, we felt it hugely important to design a software that helped care homes manage visitor bookings. “After looking to other sectors for inspiration, we were able to adapt software from our hospitality division that suited the requirements of the care sector, swiftly and efficiently. It’s great seeing the beneficial results our software has provided, especially in cases like Cyril and Betty.” Heather Grafton from Athena Care Homes said: “It is incredible to see the difference an in-person visit can make. The speed at which the Access tailored their booking system to fit our industry needs was brilliant, and has made it possible for our residents to have indoor visits, which is hugely important for the colder months. Moments like the reunion between Cyril and Betty are truly treasured.” To find out more about The Access Group, visit

Excess Death Toll in Care Homes from Covid-19 ‘Hugely Underestimated’ An early draft of a study by University of Manchester health economists and data scientists calculates that up to 10,000 more people may have died in care homes from Covid-19 than previously realised. The study is the first independent analysis of daily death notification data sent to the Care Quality Commission by 13,630 care homes in the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. In March 2020, there were 15,524 care homes operating in England, offering around 455,600 beds. The team also reveal that the excess deaths were mainly concentrated among large care homes providing services to older people and people with dementia, affiliated to a branded chain of providers- where staff may be more likely to work in more than one place. However, there were no significant differences between profit and not-for-profit care homes. The study used sophisticated statistical analysis to compare data between January 2017 to August 2020 with data from April to August 2020 to calculate excess deaths in care homes during the pandemic. They linked death notification data at care home-level with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) registers of active care homes in England, providing the data on care home characteristics used for the analysis. “Thousands of people have died from Covid-19, but because many weren’t tested, some death certificates failed to attribute cause of death to the virus either directly or indirectly, especially at the beginning of the pandemic” said Dr Marcello Morciano, a Senior Lecturer in Health Policy and economics at The university of Manchester. “This study shows that in care homes, mortality figures attributable in

some way to Covid-19 have been hugely underestimated: the figure could be as high as 10,000 people. “But it also tells us where many of the people who died in excess to what expected based on historical trends were living in care homes that experienced COVID-19-related fatalities and that has important policy implications in terms of prioritising resources in the future.” The team estimated that 29,400 more care home residents, directly and indirectly attributable to COVID-19, died during the first 23-weeks of the pandemic than expected from historical trends; an equivalent to 6.5% of all care home beds available in England. Their analysis also showed that almost all the excess deaths were recorded in the quarter of care homes which reported COVID-19 fatalities, mainly care homes that provide nursing services. Only 65% of the excess deaths were officially reported to be directly attributable to COVID-19, meaning the remaining 35% - or a figure of 10,000 people - have died in those care homes and flagged as non COVID-19 deaths. Official estimates from England and Wales have reported aggregated excess deaths by place of occurrence. The aggregates, however, do not account for care home residents dying in other settings such as hospital. They also fail to provide sufficient information to reflect on the impacts of policies over the period, or to inform new policies for the future. Professor Evan Kontopantelis from The University of Manchester added: “In care homes across Europe, at the beginning of the pandemic

staff were left without PPE, testing regimes were poor, and care home residents who needed hospital treatment didn’t get it. “And in mid-March, Hospital Trusts discharged medically fit patients to care homes to free capacity. Mandatory testing prior to discharge was only brought into effect a month later. “These factors have all played their part in the higher figure of deaths we have described. “We also believe that knowing the care home characteristics associated with COVID-19 outbreaks and excess deaths may help in designing rapid responses.” Dr Jonathan Stokes from The University of Manchester said: “The large excess of deaths in care homes shows England, and other countries, didn’t adequately protect this vulnerable group in the first wave of Covid. “Care home residents should be a clear priority for managing supply of rapid testing and other interventions in future waves, balancing protection from mortality with quality of life and other important outcomes.” Using CQC data, there are around 11,000 registered providers operating care homes for the elderly and people with dementia in the UK, housing 300,000 people. Dr Alex Turner from The University of Manchester said: "We estimated excess deaths by comparing the number of deaths of care home residents during the pandemic to the predicted number of deaths in this period calculated based on trends in deaths between January 2017 and February 2020."


Test and Trace System Has Yet to See Major Progress As Second Wave Persists Responding to the latest test and trace figures, Dr Layla McCay, director at the NHS Confederation, said: “These figures provide very clear evidence that that the COVID-19 crisis persists, with positive cases still rising, up another 8 per cent since last week, requiring even more people to be referred to the contact tracing system. Interestingly, these people had fewer close contacts compared to previous weeks, demonstrating that our lockdown efforts are having an effect. Despite that, yet again, a concerning number of close contacts submitted to the test and trace system were not successfully reached and asked to self-isolate. “There have some modest improvements, for example, in reduced turnaround times for in-person test results, but we are not seeing the rapid or significant progress that will be needed to make the test and trace system the ‘world beating’ programme we were prom-

Autism Care Provider Launch National Campaign for Real Living Wage for Carers Autism care provider, Autism at Kingwood who support autistic people, has launched a national campaign for better pay for all social care keyworkers, including over 250 front line care workers that they employ. The campaign focuses on an online petition, asking the public to call on government to ensure social care workers receive the Real Living Wage – £9.50 per hour, as many are not receiving this leaving them in financial hardship. The public are being asked to support the campaign by signing the online petition ialcare which they hope to present to the Prime Minister. The campaign has been embraced by other care providers and they have now started a collaborative effort to campaign – According to The Select Committee’s Health and Social Welfare report on Social care: Funding and Workforce it finds over 20% of the country’s 1.52m social care workers are paid only the National Living Wage. 1 in

5 care workers under the age of 25 are paid less than this. The proportion of care workers paid on or above the Real Living Wage has decreased significantly from 25% in September 2012 to just over 10% in March 2019. Kate Allen, Autism at Kingwood CEO, said: “Care providers like us have held a critical role in keeping the country and some of its most vulnerable people safe. We are used to working within extreme financial constraints, and are experts in efficiencies and doing more for less. Yet after years of responding to financial pressures whilst continuing to not only meet needs but drive up quality, have resulted in there being ‘no fat left to trim’. As we progress through 2020 and with the increasing uncertainty of Covid-19, there has been no increase in government funding to give a pay increase to social care staff – despite them literally placing their lives at risk to fulfil their role to the charity and society. Our response to the crisis must match our values as a country and our hopes for a more equal and compassionate society.”

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ised. It is vital that the time remaining in this new lockdown period is used to make this progress, as we wait for the wider rollout of a vaccine. We are about to enter the second week of the lockdown, which means there are only three weeks left, and our members have told us they have major concerns about capacity as winter looms. The clock is very much ticking. “A key issue will be how mass testing, such as the city-wide Liverpool pilot and the newly announced roll-out across additional areas, factors into this, and we hope the data will be made public so that learnings can be taken forward and applied elsewhere. In the meantime, we urge the public to continue to adhere to guidance, and the Government to continue to follow the science and to do what is in the best interests of the public and the NHS.”

Fun and Games as Colten Care Residents Support Children in Need Songs, cake sales and teddy bear games were among the fun as Colten Care homes did their bit for Children in Need. Residents and staff at homes in Dorset, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Sussex overcame the challenges of Covid-related restrictions to continue their long-standing tradition of supporting the BBC’s annual fundraising appeal. At Bourne View in Poole, members of the Companionship Team entertained residents by performing songs from musicals along with pop and jazz hits made famous by stars such as Frank Sinatra and Harry Connick Junior. And the team also

organised an in-house raffle and games inviting residents to guess the name of a teddy bear and how many chocolate bears were in a jar. Bourne View resident Helen Morris said. “We’ve had a lovely time and it’s been so nice listening to the singing. I like the fact that all this fundraising goes directly to children who need help and support.” Dressed as official appeal mascot Pudsey Bear, Companionship Team Leader Karen Grant A’ Court said: “Children in Need is always a great chance for residents and colleagues to dress up, enjoy themselves and join in to support a worthy cause.”


Worrying Rise In Anxiety and Loss of Motivation Among Older People A third of older people aged 60 and over are feeling more anxious (34%) and less motivated to do the things they enjoy (36 percent) since the start of the pandemic, according to a recent poll by Age UK. Age UK asked over 1,300 older people across the UK, how their health and mental wellbeing had changed in the last six months. The results revealed that large numbers of older people aged 60 and over are feeling more anxious: • 27% of older men and 40% of older women said they felt more anxious. • 45% of older people with health conditions said they felt more anxious and 45% of older people advised to shield said they felt this way. • 37% of people from lower social grades reported feeling more anxious, compared to 30% of those from higher social grades. When asked whether they were feeling a lack of motivation to do the things they would ordinarily enjoy, a similar trend emerged – with nearly half of those with health conditions reporting they lacked their usual motivation (46%) as well as 41% of people from lower social grades. Age UK has also been hearing from older people who are struggling to get out of bed and dressed in the morning and say that they feel like every day is the same. Recent data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) is showing similarly worrying findings. They found that in Great Britain[i]:

• 33% of people aged 60 and over are reporting high levels of anxiety • 44% of people aged 60 and over are either uncomfortable or very uncomfortable leaving the house because of covid. • 43% of people aged 60 and over say that their well-being is being affected by the pandemic. To help tackle these worrying findings, Age UK is working with NHS

England to encourage older people to reach out for help if they are struggling to cope with their mental health as part of the Help Us Help You campaign which is launching on 17 November. Not all those people who are feeling more anxious through the pandemic will go on to need professional support. The Every Mind Matters website provides useful self-help resources for mental health. For those who would like professional help, NHS services are still open to support people with mental health concerns and it is important not to delay getting help. NHS talking therapy treatments (IAPT) have high success rates in treating older people experiencing anxiety and depression. Even though the pandemic has meant that face to face appointments may not always be possible- talking therapy treatments have adapted to continue digitally or over the phone with just as good a success rate. Older people can either get help by speaking to their GP or referring themselves directly to their local IAPT service. Caroline Abrahams, Age UK Charity Director, said: “The pandemic brought sudden changes to all of our lives and that has naturally affected our feelings and mood leaving many of us feeling low, panicky, frightened or having problems sleeping – and it doesn’t look like the virus is going away any time soon with numbers of infections increasing, and restrictions tightening again. For some older people the next six months, coupled with the challenges that winter brings will be a terrify-

Barnes Commercial Insurance Broker Barnes Commercial is an independent specialist broker offering tailored commercial insurance solutions for businesses operating in the care sector, to help manage business risk. The experienced team take a personal approach, building authentic long-term relationships, supporting you with exceptional service from beginning to end. As an independent broker you can rest assured that their advice is completely impartial - the cover recommended will be just what you need for now and for the future. From typical buildings and contents insurance for your premises, or public liability and employer liability insurance, to domiciliary care insurance, or Directors’ and Officers’ cover, Barnes Commercial will help you to manage potential risk, providing freedom from worry so you can focus on running your business.

ing prospect. “Older people with depression and anxiety may not recognise the symptoms or they may not know what support is available. It is important that all older people know they do not have to cope alone and that the NHS is still there to support them with their mental health.” Professor Alistair Burns, NHS England National Clinical Director for dementia and older people’s mental health, said: “The extraordinary events of this year have been challenging for older people and no one should feel ashamed, reluctant or worried about asking for help. “NHS staff are delivering services in new and innovative ways, including telephone and video assessments, so that talking therapy services and other forms of support are still there for people who need them. NHS talking therapies can help you to discuss feelings of anxiety or depression – your GP can refer you, or you can refer yourself online.” While one in four older people were already living with a common mental health condition before the pandemic, Age UK studies show that many older people don’t seek professional help as they don’t want to worry people or think ‘they should just get on with it’ They may also think that depression is inevitable in later life and that there isn’t anything which can be done. This couldn’t be further from the truth, with older people actually more likely to recover from a mental health problem after accessing talking therapies than younger people. Caroline continued: “Depression shouldn’t be seen as a normal part of ageing and we need to challenge the assumption that older people should just put up with it. It’s never too early or too late to seek professional help, and during this time it is vital that we all take steps to look after emotional wellbeing.”

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More than just insurance. A specialist independent insurance broker providing tailored packages to manage business risk. With extensive knowledge of the care market, we can help ensure that you have the right cover in place for now, and for the future. We arrange cover for care and nursing homes, hospices and domiciliary care facilities, for both staff and business entity.

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A Delicate Balancing Act: Care Consultancy Group Explore Balancing Infection Control with Quality of Life at Dementia Congress 2020 A leading care and culture consultancy discussed how dementia care providers can strike a flourishing balance between infection control and quality of life at the UK Dementia Congress 2020. Joined by renowned carer, researcher and psychotherapist, Kate White, and Operations Director of Church Farm Care, Helen Walton, Meaningful Care Matters’ Sally Knocker and Luke Tanner shed light on how keeping people with dementia physically safe from the coronavirus pandemic could in turn impact their wellbeing, at the 15th annual congress – held virtually this year due to COVID-19. They discussed how living well in dementia care is now, more than ever, dependent on an approach to risk assessment that balances a need to keep lives safe with a need to maintain a high quality of life. Sally, a consultant trainer at Meaningful Care Matters, explained: “In homes following our Butterfly Approach, we’ve seen how it’s even more important to create a sense of family and home, especially when relatives are not able to visit regularly. The approach, which seeks to reduce institutional ‘them and us’ features such as uniforms, gloves, locked doors, and restricted visiting times, is in very real danger of being undermined due to these infection protocols becoming the established norm in many care environments.” Luke, a body psychotherapist and consultant trainer at Meaningful Care Matters, added: “The challenges posed by COVID-19 force us to look more closely at how we strike this balance in dementia care and carefully consider the issues at stake, so that everyone living, working in or visiting a dementia care home can still flourish.” Meaningful Care Matters focus just as much on emotional wellbeing

as it does physical safety. Human touch is a core part of connecting with another human being, and direct skin contact can communicate comfort, warmth and a loving intention. Helen Walton of Church Farm Care was very clear that close contact, hugs and affectionate touch can never be lost as a core element of what they offer. As care providers add more layers of protective equipment - masks, shields/visors, gowns - there is a very real risk that these well-intentioned processes could seriously impact on the freedoms that bring joy to people’s daily lives, resulting in emotional barriers between the care provider and the person receiving care. Kate, whose husband John lives in Langham Court, a dementia care home in Surrey, explained: “The thing I’ve noticed about my visits with

John is the importance of the person who brings him to the visit. Our first one was after 17 weeks of not seeing each other so it was a powerful moment. The member of staff was able to hold John’s hand and comfort him, saying ‘Isn’t it lovely John, Kate is here.’ She was kind of bridging the gap of all those weeks and was more in touch with what John needed.” Organised by the Journal of Dementia Care, the UK Dementia Congress brings together the latest ideas, research and innovations as well as providing a multidisciplinary forum for professionals, experts and people living with dementia to learn, network and share ideas and experiences. Meaningful Care Matters has also recently launched Meaningful Connections Community, a comprehensive online platform offering individuals and care providers an opportunity to share, collaborate and debate issues impacting person-centred care cultures. The first of its kind, the platform has been designed to enable global networking through the sharing of ideas, information and experiences, as the industry the world over continues to deal with delivering care in the ‘new normal’. To find out more about the new Meaningful Connections Community platform and how to join, visit Alternatively, for more information on Meaningful Care Matters, visit For more information on the UK Dementia Congress 2020, visit

Triathlon Success For Residents Recovering From Life-Changing Injuries A group of residents, who are in rehabilitation for life changing brain and spinal cord injuries, are celebrating this month having successfully completed a triathlon challenge that saw them collectively swim, cycle and walk over 54km. Amongst the group of six were 74-year-old Jean Hall and 80-year-old Jill Complin, for whom – as a former competitive swimmer – the challenge had special significance. Jill is in recovery following a stroke in December 2019, which left her with impaired mobility and unable to communicate. Her injuries have been particularly upsetting for her and her family as Jill had been extremely active prior to the stroke, competing regularly in swimming championships across the country. Jill even held British and World Records at master’s level, with her most recent medal being awarded at the London 2016 European Masters Swimming Championships, where she claimed the top spot on the podium in the 75-79 Years 800m Free category, touching in at 14:29.94. Inspired by Jill’s impressive swimming history, as well as her sheer

determination to improve her walking throughout her rehabilitation journey, residents at CHD Living’s Kingston Rehabilitation Centre took on the challenge of completing a triathlon in her honour. Slightly modified due to their injuries, the challenge consisted of collectively walking 12.75km, cycling 41.7km and swimming 160m, and took the residents just over a month to complete. Speaking of the success, Alex Barton, Rehabilitation Assistant at Kingston Rehabilitation Centre, said: “This was such a fun challenge to be involved with! We found a way for each of our residents to contribute to the Triathlon totals, whether that be using the bike with their upper limbs or supported standing because they are unable to walk. Rather than only focussing on their individual rehab goals in therapy, this gave all involved a common goal that they were really motivated to work towards to achieve together!” “Following a remarkable recovery, Jill will shortly be discharged back home after almost a year away, and what a high for her to end her journey with us on! Whilst we will be sad to see her leave us, we are so proud of the hard work she has put in, and the achievements she has made to enable her to safely return home,” Alex concluded.

A Person-Centred Approach to Mobility and Hygiene Maintaining a level of independence and involvement in activities of daily living for those in your care can be a challenge. Using the Mobility Gallery™ assessment tool (figure 1) allows you to understand a person’s functional mobility, the level of assistance required, the risk to the caregiver and the importance to stimulate functional mobility.

Figure 1 © 2020 Arjo

Person centred care places the resident at the centre of all we do. This assessment tool helps to optimise the mobility of the resident, improve dignified care and reduces the risk of injury to both the resident and the

caregiver. Promoting mobility is the driving force behind The Positive Eight™ philosophy shown in figure 2. When looking at specific hygiene tasks, needs differ significantly across care settings and need to encompass both physical and cognitive capabilities determined through individual assessment. Assisted hygiene solutions are designed to allow you to work in an ergonomically sound position, to reduce the risk of injury, whilst supporting a beneficial interaction with your resident. Caregiver safety is paramount, and factors, which affect the risk of musculoskeletal injury, should be considered, such as: • The number, type and functional mobility levels of residents being transferred or participating in hygiene routines • The inadequacy (or absence) of suitable

equipment • Restricted spaces • Lack of education and training for care skills To mitigate these risks, evidence has demonstrated that education alone is insufficient. Use of the right equipment improves caregiver safety and reduces injury-related costs for the organisation. Understanding functional mobility, combined with selection of appropriate equipment to support your resident and caregiver can assist in addressing this challenge. To learn more about Arjo's solution contact 08457 342000 or see the advert on the facing page. Figure 2 © 2020 Arjo

ISO/TR 12296:2012 Ergonomics — Manual Handling of People in the Healthcare Sector, 2012 Matz M, 2019. Patient Handling and Mobility Assessments: A White Paper Second Edition

Barchester Healthcare Launches Covid Secure Visiting Suites To Keep Residents and Relatives Connected In response to the encroaching winter weather, Barchester Healthcare has devised and built new visiting suites with the majority of our services due to have one by the end of November, so residents are able to spend time with their loved ones safely this winter. Following brainstorms with local care teams and building teams, Barchester Healthcare has run a successful pilot and is now rolling out these visiting suites as the safest and most practical visitation solution during the upcoming months where outdoor visits will be hampered by the weather. Barchester CEO, Pete Calveley, said: “The current pandemic has raised many questions in regards to family and friends visiting residents, and how care homes can balance the needs of infection control with the safety of residents, patients and staff. We have been looking closely at this and exploring many routes to help solve this problem. Careful planning, trials and preparation, along with a large investment has enabled us to adapt existing indoor rooms at homes where this is possible, and for those where it isn’t we are putting safe COVID secure indoor visiting suites in the gardens or outdoor space. We are confident these COVID-

secure spaces are the most practical and comfortable solution for the winter months.” The visiting suites are similar to a living room type space, complete with soft furnishings, lampshades, cushions, and internal room heating to create a welcoming and warm environment for residents to spend time with their loved ones. The room has an intercom system fitted so residents can clearly communicate, and engage in conversation, whilst being able to see their friends and family through a Perspex glass divider fitted for safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Jackie Winter, whose mum is a resident at Lynde House care home, said: “My family and I have been very worried that we wouldn’t be able to see Mum over the colder months so we were absolutely delighted to find mum (and we) were warm and inside. A wonderful surprise! Thank you so much. It means so much to mum and the other residents and relatives that meetings are real. It is so hard that the situation is as it is but you have really done the best you can. All looked so professional too. “Mum is approaching her 90th birthday so we are hopeful we will be able to have a mini celebration after all.”


The Timely Truth and the Whole Truth - The Duty of Candour By Stephen Covell, associate at law firm Womble Bond Dickinson ( On the 23 September 2020 the University Hospital Plymouth NHS Trust pleaded guilty at Plymouth Magistrates' Court for failing to comply with its duty of Candour in a prosecution brought by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). There had been several previous prosecutions against NHS Trusts for failing to comply with their duty of Candour however they ended in fixed penalty fines. This was the first prosecution to go to Court for sentence. The Trust was fined £1,600.00, a victim surcharge of £126.00 and ordered to pay the costs of the CQC in full of £10,845.43. The case concerned the death of an elderly patient who was undergoing an endoscopy. The procedure was abandoned when the patient suffered a perforated oesophagus. The patient was transferred to a ward for observations where she collapsed and later died. The hospital initially failed to identify the death was a serious incident and share information with the family and subsequently failed to provide a full account of the facts in response to a complaint from the patient's family. After the prosecution Nigel Acheson Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals gave the following statement: "All care providers have a duty to be open and transparent with patients and their loved ones, particularly where something goes wrong and this case sends a clear message that we will not hesitate to take action when that does not happen. Sadly, the family received neither a prompt apology nor a full explanation regarding the tragic events that took place prior to the patient's death. University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust was not transparent or open with regard to what happened

and it did not apologise to Mrs Woodfield's family in a timely way. Patients and their families are entitled to the truth and a formal written apology as soon as is practical after a serious incident, and the University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust's failure to fulfil this duty is why CQC took this action. This is the first time CQC has prosecuted an NHS Trust for failure to comply with the regulation concerning duty of candour, and we welcome the outcome of today's hearing". The prosecution brings into sharp focus the expectations of the CQC in relation to the duty of candour to patients and their families to be exercised by care providers when things go wrong with the provision of care. The statutory requirement to exercise the duty of candour is set out at Regulation 20 Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 as amended by the Amendment Regulations in 2015 which extended the duty from health service bodies to registered persons which widens the scope on NHS providers to all providers of care and treatment carrying on a regulated activity including those in the private sector. Below is a link to the CQC's own guidance on the duty of candour. In brief terms the duty requires the care provider to notify the service user or in appropriate circumstances the service user's family that a notifiable safety incident has occurred and provide the support to the service user or the service user's family. The notification must be given in person, provide an account of the facts of the incident as known to the care provider, or advise what further enquiries are appropriate including apology and record notification securely. The failures of the NHS Trust centred around failing to identify the death of Mrs Woodside as a notifiable safety incident which led to the Trust failing to communicate what had happened to the family in an open and transparent way and subsequently failure to apologise in a timely way.

It is clear from the statement of Nigel Acheson of the CQC that the CQC will use its regulatory enforcement powers to move directly to prosecute offenders who fail to adhere to the statutory duty of candour without using other enforcement powers of cautions or penalty notices.

AVOIDING ENFORCEMENT ACTION - ENSURING NOTIFICATION, ENGAGEMENT AND REPORTING 1. Identification of relevant incidents The recent prosecution highlights the need for providers to ensure that their staff are absolutely clear on their Duty of Candour and what constitutes a notifiable safety incident requiring notification to the service user or their family. Regulation 20 sets out detailed definitions as to what constitutes a notifiable safety incident for both health service bodies (r20 paragraph 8) and other providers (r20 paragraph 9). The differences reflect the different reporting criteria for health service bodies via the National Reporting and Learning System (NRLS) and the other providers to the CQC[1] 2. Action Providers also need to ensure that they have the systems and personnel in place to; • support staff record and investigate incidents • engage and record engagement with service users and their families • report to appropriate regulatory bodies • reach findings and conclusions from investigations • identify an action plan and carry it out. 3. Inquests – Consequences of Failing to Properly Investigate It is vital that a provider can evidence its own thorough investigation into a fatal incident and identification of an action plan to reduce the risk of future similar incidents to the Coroner so that the Coroner can be satisfied that risks have been identified and addressed. If the Coroner has concerns at the end of an inquest there is a continuing risk of harm to the public the Coroner must act and make a prevention of future deaths report which will almost certainly be addressed at the very least to the provider.

Eggs Shown to Aid Weight Loss in Older and Overweight People Two new international research studies[1],[2] have confirmed how eggs can help in weight loss programmes for different population groups. Both studies showed eggs to be of benefit in helping overweight and obese adults, including older age groups, lose weight. The new studies support the findings of a recent analysis of the latest UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) data[3] which showed that women who ate eggs were on average slimmer than nonegg eaters, with a lower BMI and waist-to-height ratio. The analysis of NDNS data for 2017 confirmed that eating eggs is associated with a healthier dietary pattern for women in the UK, in contrast to their previous association with an unhealthy diet. “These new studies support previous research showing that the high protein content, low energy density and satiating effect of eggs can help with weight loss,” comments Dr Juliet Gray, Registered Nutritionist. “It is timely to see this research replicated for overweight people, particularly older age groups, who are currently being advised to lose weight to help reduce their risks from COVID-19. “Eggs contain high quality protein and a wide range of micronutrients including some nutrients of concern in the UK, such as vitamin D and selenium. They offer an affordable way to help improve overall nutrition as well as aid weight loss. This is particularly relevant for older age groups who are overweight or obese as they may simultaneously be losing muscle as they age – a condition known as sarcopenic obesity.” In the first new study, a randomised clinical trial[4] published in Nutrition and Metabolism, researchers from the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Nutrition Obesity Research Center aimed to determine if a very low-carbohydrate (VLCD), high-fat diet would reduce abdominal fat and preserve lean mass without intentional calorie restriction in older obese adults and improve cardiometabolic outcomes, such as insulin sensitivity and lipid profile.

Participants lost an average of 9.7% total fat following an eight-week, VLCD diet, including at least three eggs a day, compared to a 2% fat loss in a control group prescribed a standard low-fat diet and told to avoid eggs. They also showed improvements in body composition, fat distribution and metabolic health. The study’s lead author Amy Goss, Ph.D., RDN, an assistant professor with UAB’s Department of Nutrition Sciences said: “After the eightweek intervention, despite the recommendation to consume a weightmaintaining diet, the group consuming the very low-carbohydrate diet lost more weight and total fat mass than the control diet group. “We also found significant improvements in the overall lipid profile that would reflect decreased risk of cardiovascular disease,” Goss said. “Further, insulin sensitivity improved in response to the very low-carbohydrate diet reflecting reduced risk of Type 2 diabetes. “Overall, we observed improvements in body composition, fat distri-

Don’t Delay Combi-Cleaning, Warns Rational Rational is warning that it’s essential for kitchen staff to follow the cleaning procedures recommended by their machine’s manufacturer in order to keep combi steamers operating safely and efficiently. The marketleader says that, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, some operators are choosing to delay cleaning in order to save money. “We are already seeing an increase in service call-outs arising from this,” says Trevor Lath, national service director of Rational UK. “It’s a problem that will be affecting all combi steamer brands,” he adds. Typically combi steamers should be cleaned every day as part of the kitchen routine. Most quality machines have self-cleaning programs that make what would be a time consuming and unpleasant chore effortless. On Rational’s new iCombi Pro the iCareSystem tells operators when they need to run the programme to clean the combi, so it minimises the use of chemicals – because it only asks for a clean when it’s necessary. The iCareSystem also deals with scale, so there’s no need for a separate water treatment system, or for expensive professional descaling. “The problem is that some operators are ignoring the iCareSystem’s alerts, on the assumption that delaying a clean and descale will save them money and won’t really do any harm,” says Lath. “This is not the case.” Deferring cleaning routines will lead to the build-up of dirt and scale, which may compromise cooking results, increase energy consumption and running costs and ultimately

bution and metabolic health in response to an eight-week, very lowcarbohydrate diet.” Goss added that this study was one of the first to test this dietary approach to improve outcomes related to obesity in adults older than age 65 — a population at particularly high risk of other diseases and in need of therapeutic interventions to improve health while preserving skeletal muscle mass to prevent or delay functional decline with age. In the second study[5] published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 50 overweight or obese participants attended the University of South Australia’s Clinical Trial Facility on two separate days, one week apart. On each day participants consumed one of two breakfasts (both 1800 kJ), either eggs and toast or cereal with milk and orange juice. Participants who ate the egg breakfast consumed significantly less energy at an ad libitum lunch meal four hours later, with intake following the egg breakfast significantly reduced compared with the cereal breakfast (4518 vs. 5283 kJ). The sensation of hunger was less after the egg breakfast and returned more quickly after the cereal breakfast, with no effects of gender or age. The researchers commented: “The findings suggest that satiety responses of overweight and obese are not different to non-obese participants as our study confirms findings from studies conducted in different populations. Determining which foods may help overweight and obese individuals manage their food intake is important for diet planning.” [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]

lead to equipment breakdown. If a descale becomes necessary it could cost hundreds of pounds. There are additional risks: the Rational detergent cleaning tablets don’t just clean and descale the machine, they also break down fats and grease, preventing drains from blocking and subsequent kitchen floods. “At the very least, you’re looking at unwanted costs and unwanted downtime,” says Lath. “Worst case scenario, you could block drains, flood the kitchen and damage the appliance permanently.” By making the equipment unsafe, not cleaning the combi may even compromise HACCP. “The answer is simple,” says Lath. “Follow the machine’s alerts, or the manufacturer’s guidelines, and run the cleaning program when it’s required.” HACCP data available from the iCombi Pro combi-steamer and via Rational’s ConnectedCooking platform will give the operator a comprehensive summary of the combi steamer’s daily operation, including the number of cleaning programs that have been run during a specified period. RATIONAL is the leading provider in hot food preparation equipment and, with the iVario multifunctional cooking system and the iCombi Pro combi steamer, the company delivers 95% of all conventional cooking applications. Rational’s ConnectedCooking allows operators to monitor, manage and update their Rational appliances remotely, from a PC, tablet or smartphone. iKitchen is the combination of the iCombi Pro, iVario Pro and ConnectedCooking – iKitchen delivers the best kitchen management and the best cooking solutions. For information and brochures, or to find out about free Rational Live online demonstrations and webinars, call +44 (0)1582 480388, freephone 0800 389 2944 or visit


Boost For Residents and Loved Ones as Government Gives Green Light to Visits in New COVID-Secure Spaces Relatives and loved ones will be able to meet Royal Star & Garter residents during the latest lockdown and beyond following new guidance issued by the government. Royal Star & Garter has built COVID-secure indoor meeting rooms in each of its Solihull, Surbiton and High Wycombe Homes, following the receipt of a £100,000 donation. This will enable the charity to meet new guidelines and allow relatives to continue safely visiting their loved ones throughout the winter months. However, while Royal Star & Garter has been able to benefit from the support of a generous donor, it is aware that other organisations in the care home sector may struggle to meet the criteria set out. The charity is one of over 60 organisations representing relatives, carers and providers to sign up to the Visiting Care Homes campaign organised by the National Care Forum (NCF) – the leading member association for not-for-profit social care providers. In an open letter sent to the government, it has warned it would be “intrinsically harmful” for residents not to receive visits, calling it “an erosion of people’s human rights.” Royal Star & Garter is a charity which provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia. It is looking to invest further in rapid tests and more visiting spaces, as part of its strategy to allow visits to take place safely over winter and beyond. As outlined in the NCF campaign, it also strongly supports the call for designated ‘key worker’ status for family members, providing them with regular testing so safe visits can happen inside care homes. The £100,000 donation to support this project came from Scheinberg

Relief Fund, a $50m philanthropic fund established by businessman and philanthropist Mark Scheinberg, together with his family, in March 2020 to help tackle the direct impact of Covid-19. The new rooms will allow up to two visitors per resident without supervision. Residents and relatives will enter from different entrances, and be partitioned by a floorto-ceiling pane of glass. The rooms have a homely feel to them, with the grant also covering furnishings and high-tech sound systems to allow for a more natural conversation, and to help those that are hard of

hearing. The rooms will be thoroughly cleaned after each visit. The charity has been awaiting local approval for use of their COVIDsecure rooms, and this has been given for the two they have built in Solihull. Families have been unable to visit residents at the Home there since 8 September due to regional restrictions. But thanks to their COVID-secure rooms, visits with loved ones will begin again on Monday, 16 November, after more than two months. Chief Executive Andy Cole said “We are so pleased that our residents will be able to benefit from continued visits from their loved ones. However, this is still not sufficient for some residents and we fully support the NCF’s campaign in calling for rapid testing in care homes, and for relatives to be given key worker status. Much more needs to be done to prevent hundreds of thousands of care home residents across the country being isolated from their families. We know how much time with family boosts residents’ well-being and morale, and we’re delighted that visits will continue thanks to the generous support of Scheinberg Relief Fund. It will mean the world to our residents and their families.” Royal Star & Garter and Scheinberg Relief Fund plan to share the learnings around the construction of the COVID-secure indoor spaces with other care home providers and charities both in the UK and the other countries where SRF focuses its funding support. Royal Star & Garter’s Homes in Solihull, Surbiton and High Wycombe are all welcoming new residents. For more information on this, and anything else, please visit:

Ann Hatswell, Founder of St Luke's Hospice, Dies Ann Hatswell, a founder of St Luke’s Hospice and first nurse at the original site Harrow View has peacefully died at the hospice she co-founded on Wednesday 4th November. Before establishing St Luke’s, the mother-of-three, worked as a general paediatric nurse and a clinical teacher at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington. It was during a visit to another local hospice that Ann saw the need for a similar service in Harrow and Brent. Ann went on to form a board of trustees and raise money to launch the first hospice site in Harrow View. Ann’s warmth and compassion took St Luke’s from strength to strength: from her welcoming the very first patient at Harrow View with her beaming smile to meeting the Queen who officially opened Kenton Grange in 2001. Even after her retirement in 2004, St Luke’s never left Ann’s heart. During St Luke’s 30th Anniversary celebrations in 2017, Ann said: “What is so special about St Luke’s is that it was and still is a community project – a mosaic bringing together people from all walks of life and different characters working together to make a truly special place.

“Everybody that works at St Luke’s has St Luke’s in their hearts, and it is open to everyone. I knew right from the start that one of the most important parts of the care we gave was the little things. It is the little things that can make all the difference.” St Luke’s CEO, Alpana Malde said: "Anyone who met Ann was instantly drawn to her because of her innate kindness, her lively spirited smile and her ability to make all around her feel better in themselves. She with a few others founded St Luke’s and we were honoured that she left life while being cared for by us. It was a very small way to say thank you for all she has done for the Hospice over the years.” "The day before Ann died, she was able to digitally watch the unveiling of her name on a pergola in the new St Luke’s memory garden in her honour, which reads ‘Ann Hatswell…because of you’. It was a very special moment. She lives on at St Luke’s and will always be remembered fondly by all at the Hospice who knew her. "Ann – Because of you. Thank you." If you would like to leave a tribute message to Ann and make a kind donation, please visit

Visioncall Eyes Growth Following Restructure

Eye care specialist Visioncall is focussing on growing its operations across the UK following a restructuring process designed to improve its clinical service. Visioncall is one of the UK’s leading providers of eye health services

to care homes and has had to adapt its operating model to facilitate growth in a market heavily impacted by Covid-19. The restructure consolidated managerial, administrative, bookings, and HR roles to the company’s Cambuslang base. Head office will act as the nexus of the hub and spoke model of operations with lead optometrists and dispensing opticians focussing on the delivery and standard of care. Three new regional lead optometrist roles and three lead dispensing optician positions have been created to provide deeper and broader coverage south of the border. Michelle Le Prevost, Managing Director at Visioncall, led the restructuring programme. She said: “Covid-19 has had an immeasurable impact on businesses across the country and around the world, and few have been as hard as our partners and patients in the care home sector. It became clear very quickly that we would have to adapt our operations significantly to be able to continue our person-focused eye care, which – while difficult – gave us the capacity to look at our broader business operations and adapt for the future.

“Our clinical teams are the experts in the fields and specialise in the looking after our elderly and vulnerable patients, including those with dementia and communication issues. Because of the nature of our core patient base, it’s essential that those clinical teams can focus on the implementing the highest standards of care rather than roles like processing bookings which can be done remotely. “The new operating model also allows us to be more flexible to changing markets. Care homes remain our central and core audience although as the way we each live our lives is changed, perhaps irrevocably, by Covid-19, there are opportunities to expand and innovate with new routes to market for eye health businesses like ours. “The future of the care home sector and the wider economy is uncertain, but by taking these brave steps now, we’re securing the future of our business and protecting our patients’ eye care and the improvements in quality of life that accompany clear vision.” Visioncall has been delivering person-centred eye care to the UK care home sector since 1994. Its services include home sight tests, optical dispensing and dementia-friendly eye exams. More than 50% of UK care home residents suffer with sight loss, which can increase anxiety and frustration, having knock-on effects on other aspects of an individual’s physical and mental health. To find out more about Visioncall, please visit:

Wisbech Mayor Delivers Residents at Glennfield Care Home “Sweet” Memories Wisbech town council, a local farm and a new business owner teamed up to take care home residents and staff on a trip down memory lane with their taste buds. Sweet shop boss Nathaniel Woodward and his partner Leah Huggins are set to

soft sweets for residents unable to tackle the boiled ones. The bags, which contained things like aniseed balls, lemon sherbet and army and navy boiled sweets, have been sponsored by local farm Faste Lente Llamas. Tina Gambell, owner of Faste Lente Llamas and also town council assistant,

open their second Woodward’s Confection store in Wisbech and promised every

said: “The aim is to evoke memories that people can share among their family and

resident a bag of old-fashioned favourites.

other residents, which will hopefully spark a feeling of unity.”

Nathaniel and Leah have also provided sweets for the care home staff share boxes and are also responsible for wrapping the individual gift bags. There will be

Wisbech Mayor Councillor Aigars Balsevics and the deputy mayor Councillor Andrew Lynn have been busy delivering the retro sweets.


Joint Effort to Fight Covid-19 Second Wave

A Scarborough care provider is teaming up with local health chiefs to help tackle rising cases of Covid-19 in the town. Saint Cecilia’s Nursing Home in Scarborough has responded to a local and national appeal to take in discharged coronavirus patients to ease the pressure on hospitals. As it did this spring, the home has designated an isolated floor to safely care for discharged Covid-19 patients, to support local hospitals. The move comes as cases of Covid-19 rise across North Yorkshire, with the most significant area being Scarborough borough where cases were running 577 per 100,000 residents on 12th November. The national average is 248. The home’s Managing Director Mike Padgham said it was vital that everyone pulled together to tackle the spread, care for people properly and protect local hospitals. “The number of cases in Scarborough is alarming and it is up to us all to respond and tackle this quickly,” he said. “As we did in the Spring, we have agreed with North Yorkshire County Council, the North Yorkshire CCG and the hospital to take in discharged

Covid-19 patients and care for them in properly isolated and segregated facilities at our nursing home. “These people deserve somewhere they can be cared for. If we don’t take them in, they may have to travel many miles for care, and it would increase the strain on Scarborough Hospital. “We want to pro-actively play our part. We did this very successfully in the Spring without any adverse effect on the home and successfully nursed a number of people back to health.” Similar action is being taken across the country, at the request of the Government, to avoid NHS hospitals from being overwhelmed by increasing Covid-19 cases. There will be six such sites in North Yorkshire coming on stream imminently. Saint Cecilia’s will be the one in Scarborough. Homes must be approved as suitable after an inspection by the care regulator, the Care Quality Commission (CQC). This looks at enhanced standards around staffing, the physical layout of the building and efforts over infection control. This inspection was completed successfully at Saint Cecilia’s on Friday. Mr Padgham said it was also vital that people followed the ongoing general safety advice. “As a community we have to follow the guidelines to get cases down in Scarborough,” he said. “It is important that we adhere to the rules of hands, space, face.” Lockdown rules specify: • Only leave home for food, medical reasons, exercise, education, or • work • Not meet up with other households, even outdoors, except for permitted • reasons set out in the national guidance • Work from home if you can • Avoid travel unless absolutely essential • Self-isolate and get a test if you have symptoms – it’s the law

Cheshire Community Foundation Helps Social Care Charity During Pandemic The social care charity, Community Integrated Care, has been supported by Cheshire Community Foundation with an overwhelming donation to help with the pressures that accompany living through a global pandemic. The Cheshire Community Foundation, who raise funds to support hundreds of charities and voluntary groups across Cheshire and Warrington, launched an appeal earlier this year to assist not-for-profit organisations cope with the challenges surrounding Coronavirus. Showing their support for those caring for the vulnerable, the Cheshire Community Foundation kindly donated almost £5000 to Community Integrated Care – one of the UK’s largest health and social care charities. The charity, which employs over 1,200 colleagues across the North West, supporting people with learning disabilities, autism, mental health concerns and dementia. Such donation, spread across multiple services within the Cheshire and Warrington area, enabled teams to purchase items for the people they support in order to continue living fulfilled and enjoyable lives. It is during these challenging times that donations like these are truly a blessing as they have created the opportunity for newly built, or expansions of, sensory rooms. Furthermore, some services ordered exercise equipment, whilst others bought items that could transform their facilities into an on-

site spa. This donation also allowed many senior members of staff to purchase wellbeing packs for their teams as a small token of their appreciation. Comments such as “Receiving the gesture of a mug and treats made me feel a valued member of the team”, “I felt appreciated during these difficult times” and “It was a lovely gesture, it made me emotional.” The Foundation’s donation also supported the charity to purchase state-of-the-art air filters for local care homes, to reduce the risk of the transmission of Coronavirus, and to boost it’s supply of specialist infection prevention items. John Hughes, Director of Partnerships and Communities at Community Integrated Care said, “This is a challenging time for the social care sector, so it’s invaluable to have the support of other organisations. We need to ensure that our frontline colleagues can continue to focus on the most important thing, which is providing great care and support and managing our services. By receiving this invaluable donation from the Cheshire Community Foundation, our teams have been able to purchase important items for the people we support.” He continued, “While we’re all battling through these unprecedented times, it’s beyond touching to know that others are still willing to offer their services and help out where they can. I know our teams in the Cheshire and Warrington area are very grateful for the donation and what they’ve been able to do with it. Thank you Cheshire Community Foundation.”


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PRODUCTS AND SERVICES 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 for details.

Care sector employers looking to reward hard working staff for their efforts during lockdown have helped double new business at one of the UK’s leading gifting and engagement companies. Appreciate Group saw the sharp rise in demand from new clients between April and August as firms looked to thank employee efforts during the pandemic. The year-on-year increase was particularly high in the care sector – where many employees remained in the workplace throughout lockdown. Appreciate Group’s business products include Love2shop gift cards, e-gift cards and vouchers all of which companies can use to reward their employees and customers. Love2shop can be redeemed with many of the nation’s leading retailers and leisure providers. Frank Creighton, Director of Business Development at Appreciate Group said: “Employees up and down the country have needed to adapt to new and different ways of working during these challenging times, be

that working from home or abiding by social distancing rules in the workplace. “These challenges have also led to an increasing number of employers finding new ways to say thank you to colleagues for their efforts during lockdown, including digital rewards.” “Recognition gestures such as gift cards can go a long way in making staff feel that their employer values their commitment. Many companies will need these hard-working employees as they continue to deal with, and emerge from, the challenges of COVID-19.” Employers are able to use the tax-free Trivial Benefits Allowance to reward staff with gift cards up to the value of £50. For more information on tax-free gifting for employees, visit: or email Alex Speed, Head of Business Development, at Appreciate Group

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 or see the advert on page 3.

New Scale for Mobility-Impaired Residents Could Reduce ‘Risk of Injury to Staff and Demand From Care Sector Firms Rewarding Staff In Residents’ and ‘Costs to Healthcare’ Lockdown Drives Surge In Recognition Products

Euroservice Trolley Manufacturers celebrating 40 years of experience in the sale and manufacture of wooden trolleys for the catering trade, Euroservice trolley manufacturers have now acquired a worldwide reputation and still offer an extensive /comprehensive range of top quality wooden trolleys manufactured in the UK. Top quality is a priority in the production of all of our products and Euroservice are specialists in the manufacture of sturdy and beautiful looking trolleys which will grace any environment from the small privately owned restaurant to the splendid 3 to 5

star hotels, resorts and Residential homes. Euroservice’s excellence in the manufacture of wooden trolleys is backed by a personal, efficient and friendly service second to none. We are always busy researching the needs of the market and launch new ranges according to market demands. Whatever your needs you can be assured that Euroservice can cater for them and we look forward to your call. Freephone: 0800 917 7943

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 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.

A new chair scale with a lifting seat, believed to be the first of its kind, will ‘reduce risk of injury to residents’ and ‘support the musculoskeletal health of staff’ when weighing individuals with limited mobility. By making the weighing process easier, the new device could also ‘reduce costs to healthcare’’ according to the manufacturer. The M-250, available now from scale manufacturer Marsden, is a chair scale that features a seat that rises and lowers to help a resident get into, and out of, a sitting position. Marsden says it has been introduced in response to requests from customers for easier ways to weigh residents who cannot stand unaided. The tilting seat base, operated by a handheld remote control, rises to the resident and then gently lowers them into the seat. Once weighing is complete, it rises slowly to assist them from sitting to a near-standing position. The new weighing scale is Class III Approved, meaning it is legally suitable for weighing individuals for medical purposes. It provides an accurate weight reading to the nearest 100g, and has a capacity of 250kg. The seat is slightly wider than standard chair scales, meaning it can accommodate larger residents. Development of the new weighing scale began in 2017, with input provided by care homes, back care specialists and other industry experts, including medical device design house PD-M. The scale was developed alongside the Patient Transfer Scale, Marsden’s transfer board with built-in weighing scale that was launched in late 2018.

“The M-250 is designed to make weighing residents with limited mobility more comfortable, less stressful, and potentially even reduce the time and number of staff it typically takes to weigh these individuals,” said Dave Smith, Marketing Director at Marsden. “We want to see it reducing costs to healthcare too, through quicker, easier weighing processes and less risk of injury to care staff.” Mark Coates, Operations Director at Marsden, said: “The biggest challenge of weighing residents with limited mobility is the time it takes, the stress on the individual and the amount of effort required by staff. “When developing the scale we had to consider the benefit to the resident and the member of staff. What’s safest and easiest for the healthcare professional without compromising comfort for the resident? “Our finished product has been tested by individuals with varying levels of mobility, and with both one and two members of staff. Through this testing we found that effort required by staff to help the resident out of the seat was greatly reduced compared to a standard chair scale or wheelchair. “Plus, we’ve focused on reducing risk of injury to residents as well as supporting the musculoskeletal health of healthcare staff when weighing those with limited mobility.” “We’re looking forward to seeing the M-250 make a real difference in care homes in the UK, and around the world.” The M-250 Chair Scale with Stand Assist is available to order now on the Marsden website. or email

NEW Adaptawear Clothing Website Helping Independent & Assisted Dressing Adaptawear has recently launched their NEW and improved website making it even easier for customers to browse, buy and shop online. Benefits of New Website • New Adaptawear logo – easier and cleaner to read • Faster and simpler to buy online through your mobile, tablet or PC • Improved navigation to relevant collections & categories: ladies wear, menswear and lifestyle and comfort • Updated and enhanced product photography • Easier & additional payment opportunities: • Secure & reliable • Ability for customers to set up account online so you can track orders and make it easier for repeat or new orders • Improved order tracking functionality • Integrated customer reviews Adaptawear provides adaptive clothing that are specially designed to making dressing easier and the elderly and disabled; both for independent dressing and assisted dressing. Adaptawear clothes are ideal for arthritis, stroke, Parkinson, incontinence and dementia

sufferers as well as people of all ages who struggle with fastenings, buttons and zips. 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 CARER OFFER: SAVE 10% Do go and visit online at to buy adapted clothing online. Carer readers please quote CR10 for 10% discount off your first order.

Antimicrobial Contract Fabrics for Added Reassurance Skopos has recently launched a new sub-brand, Skopos Pro-tect Plus, as a marker for all Skopos products offered with an antimicrobial finish. Skopos has been offering antimicrobial fabrics for over 15 years, however the new sub-brand helps to clearly identify this offer to our customers, at a time where extra reassurance within contract interiors has never been more relevant. Within Pro-tect Plus Skopos customers have a choice of fabrics for different end uses; Antimicrobial drapery fabrics, Antimicrobial woven upholstery fabrics, Antimicrobial faux leather and vinyls. The upholstery fabrics offer includes luxury velvet, printed fabrics, vinyls and a large range of woven collections, mostly waterproof, soil and stain resist, perfect for caring interiors. Many of our drapery and bedding fabrics can be finished with an antimicrobial treatment, so

please ask. Choices include print basecloths, plain and woven designs. All antimicrobial fabrics are flame retardant and tested to the high standards required for contract interiors. Skopos antimicrobial fabrics have bacteriostatic, viral-reducing and anti-fungal properties. Fabrics are not seen as a beneficial host for Sars Cov-2 even without antimicrobial treatment, however including this extra benefit viruses and bacteria are greatly reduced. Free samples of our fabrics are available online or via our customer services team:



Malnutrition Matters

By Lesley Carter, Programme Lead, The Malnutrition Task Force, and Dr Trevor Smith, President of BAPEN

BAPEN1 and the Malnutrition Task Force2, came together again earlier this month to run the third UK Malnutrition Awareness Week3 - #UKMAW2020. This is an important week in the nutritional calendar as it highlights national efforts to raise awareness of the causes and consequences of malnutrition for more vulnerable, older people, and for those with disease-related risks of malnutrition in the UK. The care home sector is under exceptional and extraordinary amounts of pressure and managers are having to finding new and innovative ways of working to keep everyone safe. It is now even more important that nutrition remains a priority. There are many challenges; we already know that 30-42% of people who were admitted into a care home setting pre COVID-19 were already malnourished or at a higher risk. New admissions will likely be even more vulnerable. Residents may be admitted recovering from COVID-19, others may have experienced a deterioration of their physical condition during the lockdown in their own homes, making them unable to cope independently. People living with dementia may experience more rapidly advancing symptoms, family carers may be finding it more difficult to cope with less available domiciliary care, and therefore may be seeking admission to residential care. There are grave concerns about the nutritional status of older people who are already resident in care homes, whose lives have been changed dramatically because of COVID-19 related issues, isolation in their own rooms, reduction in the amount of usual contact with staff and other residents, their lack of understanding and fear about staff dressed in PPE and most importantly, their lack of usual contact with their friends and relatives. These difficult changes in circumstances are often translated into loneliness, with a lack of well-being, less interest in food, and a smaller appetite. Residents may be reluctant to eat because of oral health difficulties which

have been hard to treat, resulting in dehydration and weight loss, which we know can lead to health complications associated with poorer outcomes. Care homes must have a food and drink strategy that addresses the nutritional needs of people using the service4. The strategy needs to be underpinned with a robust policy for nutritional screening and development of appropriate nutritional care plans, with guidelines and staff training. Each resident must have a personalised nutritional care plan (which is shared with the kitchen and menu planning staff) which manages their nutritional risk, with regular monitoring and evaluation which will ensure that residents do not experience unplanned weight loss, or if they do it is picked up immediately. Alongside this it is positive practice to have a section in the ‘getting to know you’ conversations with the resident and their friends and relatives, prior to or during admission, to get a clear understanding of what, how and when the new resident likes to eat and drink. This knowledge helps to ensure that mealtimes are an enjoyable experience. We know that undernutrition is not always obvious, it's often hidden and not easy to identify by just looking at a person. Measuring of malnutrition risk (undernutrition) and assessment through screening is essential to accurately identify risk. This can be done easily using BAPEN’s Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (‘MUST’). It is then important to put in place an individualised nutritional care plan based on the results of screening for malnutrition risk. Some guidance on this can be found here. Undertaking a nutritional assessment using the ‘MUST’ tool on admission will identify any risk, and help to compile a personalised nutritional care plan which clearly sets out the plan for all staff to see and follow. It will include food and drink preferences, identify the help that is needed to eat and drink independently, be specific about the help that is required to cut food, and physically support someone to get food from the plate to the mouth. Special requirements must be set out e.g. IDDSI5 (International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative) and any adaptations required e.g. to cutlery or sitting positions. The ‘MUST’ score and care plan should be updated regularly, but at least monthly, and any changes or concerns should be mentioned at the regular GP round. There are other, small changes that can make a significant difference to the overall mealtime experience, making sure that there is a calm and

comfortable feel about mealtimes. It is important to ensure that people have the tools and support they need to allow them to eat and drink as independently as possible. In these new ways of working in the COVID world, the importance of not rushing a resident who needs help to eat and drink or is slow to chew and swallow cannot be overemphasized as often they will just give up – and if this happens at each meal the malnutrition risk is great. When people are forced to eat alone because of isolation or social distancing, listening to a favourite piece of music or the radio, or watching an enjoyed television programme can help. Think about how a focus on food can be integrated into the residents’ activities schedule. There are many tools, information sources and resources that can help organisations to make significant and beneficial changes that are easily achievable and can help to positively improve the experience of eating and drinking in care homes. • Make contact with your local dietetics team who can assist with training and support. • When reviewing your organisation’s nutrition strategy - the information on the Malnutrition Pathway website gives helpful information at • The Malnutrition Task Force has resources that can help and has examples of positive practice from other care homes. Positive practice can be shared on the MTF website at Nutrition is the foundation of health and wellbeing. We invite you to join us in continuing to shine a light on the risk of malnutrition. Throughout October, all social care professionals are being asked to submit data to help build a national picture of risk status. Last year, we had a great response from care homes, and we hope even more care homes will submit data this year, just choose one day of the month to report and enter information online at It is important that as many organisations and practitioners as possible become part of this nationwide effort to screen for malnutrition. The impact of this year on the health and wellbeing of older people must be reviewed, analysed, and acted upon. 1 The British Association of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (BAPEN). 2 The Malnutrition Task Force. 3 UK Malnutrition Awareness Week. 4 Care Quality Commission. Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities). Regulations 2014: Regulation 14 Meeting Nutritional and Hydration Needs. 5 IDDSI. International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative.

Taking Combi Steamer Productivity To The Max One of the stars of Rational’s new iCombi Pro combi steamer is an advanced feature called iProductionManager which, the company says, not only increases productivity but also adds enormous flexibility to production schedules. At the same time it reduces running costs. The option of cooking different products at the same time in a combi steamer isn’t new, but iProductionManager takes the whole concept to a higher level. As well as telling you what products can be cooked together, it allows chefs to select whether they want all the food to be ready at the same time, or if they want it all to be cooked as quickly as possible, or if they want it cooked as energy efficiently as possible. Depending on the choice, iProductionManager then automatically prepares the optimum schedule. For example, suppose a full breakfast is being cooked where everything is wanted at the same time. The system will inform the chef when to load the eggs, the bacon, the tomatoes, and so on, staggering the start times so that the hash browns are perfectly cooked at exactly the same moment as the mushrooms – and all the other breakfast components. On the other hand, chefs may want each food cooked as quickly as possible. In this case, food is loaded onto the different shelves and iProductionManager simply lets staff know when each shelf’s load is ready. As one shelf’s food is being taken out, iProductionManager automatically compensates for the loss of temperature due to the door opening, and recalculates the cooking times for food on all the other shelves. Energy efficiency is increasingly important and iProductionManager can help here, too, by creating the most energy efficient schedule for multiple different

foods. The iCombi control panel makes everything simple. Once the chefs have selected what type of schedule they want – synchronised, speedy or efficient – they simply drag the relevant icon, such as sausages, onto the appropriate shelf on the panel, so the system knows which food is where and can monitor it accordingly. With iProductionManager chefs can even split shelves, so that two different foods can be cooked on the same shelf, with the system monitoring each to ensure they are perfectly cooked. “The new normal is already creating new challenges for chefs,” says Simon Lohse, managing director of Rational UK. “Consumers want more flexibility in terms of when they eat – all day eateries are going to be more common; many kitchens may have fewer staff; and every operator will have the overriding need to reduce running costs. More efficient management of the production process will provide solutions in all these areas – and iProductionManager delivers the most advanced, easy to use and practical technology available.” iProductionManager is one of a suite of new, advanced intelligent features on Rational’s iCombi Pro combi steamer. RATIONAL is the leading provider in hot food preparation equipment and, with the iVario multifunctional cooking system and the iCombi Pro combi steamer, the company delivers all a commercial kitchen’s thermal cooking requirements. Together, the two appliances offer the best cooking solutions. For information and brochures, or to find out about free Rational Live online demonstrations and webinars, call +44 (0)1582 480388, freephone 0800 389 2944 or visit

EF Group Launches CaterCloud - The Secret Ingredient for Menu Management Success Manchester-based, EF Group has announced it is offering free for life access to its new cloud-based, menu management platform, CaterCloud, which launched this week. The easy-to-use, next generation allergen, nutrition, menu planning and costing system offers a wealth of enhanced functionality to help caterers gain significant efficiencies in their operations, to control costs and increase profits. CaterCloud helps businesses ensure food safety remains a key focus. With food labelling regulations set to change in October 2021, as a result of Natasha’s Law, all England-based businesses working in the food industry will be required to clearly label all foods produced and packed on their premises with a full list of ingredients detailing the full allergen profile. Designed to help businesses prepare for this upcoming regulation, CaterCloud provides sub-allergen information and tagging; QR Code scanning for live allergen and nutritional information, along with the ability to print Natasha’s Law compliant food labels. CaterCloud also offers customers access to a range of accredited training for allergen awareness and food safety. CaterCloud’s innovative functionality also boasts many other benefits to enable simple menu management for caterers across the hospitality, healthcare, education and retail sectors. It offers effective menu planning with dish and menu costings; access to a nutritional database with 1,000s of ingredients and customisable dashboards to record KPIs. Users of CaterCloud can also join the e-foods’ Buyers’ Club and benefit from its substantial buying power. The Buyers’ Club is made up of a net-

work of trusted accredited suppliers across the UK. Users can purchase food and non-food goods from these suppliers with savings of between 5 to 10%. Paul Mizen, Chief Executive, EF Group said: “The service industries are

moving at pace towards technology to help meet their stock ordering, menu planning and compliance challenges. Our experience shows that there is increasing demand for more advanced dish and menu costing tools, as well as detailed, easy to use product data. “Catering managers require their menu management software to seamlessly integrate with their ordering systems and demand best value from their food suppliers. With CaterCloud, we will remain at the forefront of delivering the innovative features the industry needs. “The entire catering industry has been heavily impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic and as businesses work hard to recover, we are providing CaterCloud for free to help maximise efficiencies and reduce costs. This is our way of giving something back to the industry upon which our business is founded.” CaterCloud is a web-based menu planning, nutrition, allergen and costing system which is part of the E-F Group. CaterCloud helps hundreds of hospitality businesses deliver performance and control costs while reducing food safety risks. CaterCloud is committed to innovation in food management, its leading-edge platform helps to manage food offerings from front desk to kitchens, with the aim of improving efficiency in catering operations. Live menu costings help businesses to see how their business is performing every day, enabling them to focus on producing quality food and increasing profitability. CaterCloud’s clients are mainly in the following sectors: healthcare, education, hospitality and retail. For more information, see the advert on page 22 or visit

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DYSPHAGIA myAko Develops Dysphagia Online Courses For Carers Swallowing difficulties are common in people residing in care homes. Early identification, assessment and management by care home staff may result in a decrease in the incidence of pneumonia and death. Therefore, it is important for staff to be aware of the signs of dysphagia and what to do in order to prevent further deterioration in a resident’s condition. Dr. Elizabeth Boaden is a fellow of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists and has spent over 30 years working to improve the quality of life of those living with dysphagia. Dr. Boaden has created a set of courses on dysphagia. These courses have been researched and developed for the benefit of all healthcare workers and nurses, and are due to be available on

WHAT IS DYSPHAGIA? Dysphagia is the term used to describe difficulties swallowing. Difficulties may range from a decrease in chewing ability to food and drinks going onto the lungs causing aspiration pneumonia and death. Dysphagia is a common feature of many congenital and acquired structural and neurological difficulties. It is not possible to provide accurate figures regarding the prevalence of dysphagia, as it is often unrecognised and underdiagnosed. Dysphagia affects approximately 8% of the global population. Although swallowing difficulties are seen in the paediatric population, the greater incidence is in adult client group. The incidence of

commonly occuring elderly neurological diseases in the older population are stroke (45-78%), Parkinson’s disease (75-100%) and Alzeimer’s disease (90%). Swallowing involves six cranial nerves and over 26 pairs of muscles, with the oesophagus opening within a fraction of a second of airway closure. It is therefore unsurprising that everyone has experienced at least one incident where just a slight incoordination of the swallow has caused coughing and choking as food and drink enter the airway. It is therefore to be expected that dysphagia occurs in approximately 35% of the normal aging elderly population owing to weakness in the muscles for swallowing. Furthermore, it has been reported that up to 74% of residents in care homes will present with swallowing difficulties of some description.

AWARENESS AND EDUCATION The training, available on, helps healthcare workers to better understand the impact of dysphagia and how to help those in their care. The nurses training helps them support Speech and Language Therapists with remote dysphagia assessments, without the need for face-to-face visits. Utilising remote teleswallowing techniques helps to reduce current NHS waiting lists and nurses and carers are able to improve early diagnosis and treatment of dysphagia.

MOVING FORWARD It is imperative for care staff to be able to quickly and effectively screen for dysphagia, as a delay in doing so may have devastating effects. It is a care worker’s duty to ease the struggle presented by dysphagia; not only to avoid the possibility of death, but to simply ensure that a resident’s later life and emotional well-being is as comfortable and content as possible. Visit, email or call 01202 283383 for further details.

Are You in Need of Dysphagia Training ? *

*This training is intended for healthcare professionals only.

Did you know that between 50-75% of nursing home residents suffer from dysphagia1? Nutricia has a training solution for you, a FREE e-learning 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 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 continuing 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 e-learning and get started! For any questions contact your local Nutricia sales representative or our Resource Centre at 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.(


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Guidance For Staff Returning or Joining the Care Sector COVID-19 is an infectious disease that is highly contagious (Li, 2020). While most people will experience mild to moderate symptoms, the elderly are at greater risk of becoming seriously or gravely ill. Those who live in care homes are at an increased risk (CDC, 2020). It is therefore important that care staff or those who a new to the care sector remain vigilant and are up to date on best practice hygiene and infection control as government advice is constantly evolving. This will be key to prevent the spread of the virus in care settings.


It is important that care staff wash and disinfect their hands frequently to help limit the spread of the virus. There should also be emphasis on correct handwashing (Aymood et al 2020). Studies have found that correct handwashing can limit the spread of coronavirus by 69% (Nicolaides et al 2020) . Research has found that most people do not wash their hands correctly, forgetting to disinfectant areas such as between the fingers, fingertips and thumbs. Staff should be aware of best practice hand hygiene.

How to disinfect your hands

It is also imperative that staff know when to perform hand hygiene, this includes: • Before touching a resident

To prevent germs from being transferred to the resident from your hands • Before an aseptic procedure e.g. changing dressings or taking bloods To reduce the risk of germs entering the body during the procedure. For guidance on dressing changes, Molnlycke Healthcare have a suite of free resources for carers • After body fluid exposure risk To protect yourself and the care home environment from harmful resident germs • After touching a resident To prevent transfer to yourself, the environment and other residents • After touching a resident’s surroundings To remove germs picked up by touching the resident’s local environment

Article by GAMA Healthcare (


It is important that PPE is available for staff to use. When carers are in close personal contact with a resident, they should wear PPE to prevent the transmission of coronavirus. Staff should also be familiar on what type of PPE to use based on the situation (Public Health England, 2020) Public Health England guidance recommends the following types of PPE for each situation: When providing close personal care in direct contact with the resident(s) (e.g.touching) OR within 2 metres of anyone in the household who is coughing • Disposable gloves – to protect from fluids, secretions and contact from residents body • Disposable plastic apron - to protect from fluids, secretions and contact from residents body • Fluid repellent surgical mask – This can be worn throughout the shift, unless staff need to eat, drink or take a break • Eye protection – protect from secretions and droplets from residents mouth, this is particularly important when a resident is repeatedly coughing. When within 2 metres of a client or household members but not delivering personal care or needing to touch them, and there is no one within 2 metres who has a cough • Type 11 surgical mask - This can be worn throughout the shift, unless

staff need to eat, drink or take a break (Public Health England, 2020). It may also be prudent to wear visors, but they have been found to limit the inhalation of the virus by 92% (Perencevich, 2020)


Coronavirus can live on surfaces for days. It is therefore important that effective surface hygiene is incorporated daily to prevent the spread of the virus. Carers undertaking cleaning duties should be aware of the 5 principles of the cleaning. GAMA Healthcare has a suite of free downloadable resources which can be shared amongst colleagues and provided to in house or agency cleaning staff. These include posters that can be put up as a daily reminder All waste should be put aside for 72 hours before being put inside the household. By incorporating these practices into daily duties, carers can help limit the spread of the infectious disease and protect themselves as well as residents.

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 supporting 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


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Greyland Spray and Wipe Ultra Disinfectant Has ‘Huge Impact on Cleaning Industry’ In this statement from Richard Dyson, MD of Greyland, “From not existing, the new Greyland Spray and Wipe Ultra Disinfectant has had huge impact on the Cleaning industry since its launch in early March 2020. “Trading patterns are very hit and miss at the moment, with different pressures hitting UK Cleaning chemical manufacturers on a daily basis. “One thing that has been consistent, is the weekly sales growth for the new Spray and Wipe Ultra Disinfectant, with just a 1 minute anti-coronavirus contact time, the product available in both 750ml ready to use Trigger Spray and top up refill 5L, has very quickly become Greyland’s number 1 best seller.” Luckily, the Greyland factory in Manchester has been

purpose-built for both volume capacity and versatility, in order to quickly and readily switch production focus with minimum fuss. Expansion to capacity at any time has also been planned in from the start, with continual investment and upgrades to production equipment, and increased staff. Richard Dyson continues: “After the initial March and April early reactions to the pandemic, we have coped with everything thrown at us, and right now in mid June our production flow and renowned industry order-to-delivery lead time is pretty much back to normal.” Contact the company now: T. 0161 343 3830 E. W.

MAG Launches Ozone Generator Proven To Kill Covid–19

One of the UK’s leading suppliers of commercial laundry solutions, MAG Laundry Equipment, can now offer a generator that has been proven to kill the Covid–19 coronavirus. In a ground-breaking study conducted by Nara Medical University, it was confirmed that ozone gas can effectively inactivate the virus up to 1 / 10,000 CT (cycle threshold). In real conditions, it shows that Covid–19 can be inactivated on all surfaces and that ozone can be used in the sanitisation of all environments. Putting the new discovery into the practise, the MAG Ozone Generator emits ozone through the air to sanitise surfaces and kill bacteria, microorganisms and viruses including Covid–19, while permanently eliminating unpleasant odours. Proven to eliminate SARS coronavirus, norovirus, E.coli, salmonella and more than 99% of harmful bacteria and viruses, ozone is recognised as the strongest and fastest method of destroy-

ing microorganisms. With cycle times from 15 minutes to 72 hours, the generator is suitable for quick cleans and full airregeneration projects and can be used across all business sectors. Commenting on the new product, Mark Dennis, managing director of MAG Laundry Equipment said: “The ability to offer a product that has been proven to kill the Covid–19 coronavirus is a real triumph for us as a business. “With the UK economy now officially in a recession, it’s important that the Government and businesses look at how people can return to work safely, protect jobs and keep the economy moving. The ozone generator could be a key part in that, with the ability to sterilize office spaces, hotel rooms or hospitality venues quickly and effectively.” More information on MAG Laundry Equipment is available at

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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Why Care Homes Need Change from Traditional Toxic Cleaning Products to a More Sustainable, Safe and Low-Cost Alternative By Chris Speak, Managing Director, Purozo Limited ( If we took the time to analyse our present cleaning regimes, it would unearth some startling facts. Firstly, the huge cost and quantity being spent in our homes on a range of cleaning and sanitising products is adding pressure to budgets which are already over stretched, as well as putting more strain on our wonderful care staff. Secondly, the extra storage you need for multiple chemicals, the plastic waste they produce and the worry of running out of stock also presents additional challenges.


Aside from all of the challenges listed above, there are unfortunately much more worrying aspects to a home full of chemical cleaning products that we need to consider - especially when it comes to the safety of our precious residents and dedicated staff. In an enclosed environment within a care home, what effect can these toxic chemicals have on an already fragile community? We already know that harmful side effects of chemicals can include

aggravating chest conditions, skin issues, and allergies for both staff and residents. Although we try to eliminate these possibilities with COSHH training, it still does not remove the danger. In this new dawn of environmental awareness, we still continue to pump all these toxic chemicals down our drains and into our rivers, lakes and coastline, and for what reason?


Can we do something about it? Of course we can. Joining many care homes from across the UK in switching from toxic chemicals to the chemical-free Tersnao Lotus Pro will create a more sustainable, toxin free home, which is safe for your residents and staff – and at a fraction of your current cost. There is also no requirement for COSHH training and you will be creating a fresh, clean and sanitised home. Why wouldn’t you want to change? For more information please visit our website or contact us on 01594 546250 |

New DePuro Pro Air Purifier In Use In Two NHS Hospitals The new DePuro Pro air purifier has been successfully installed in two NHS hospitals in Essex as part of their fight against the spread of Covid-19. The twelve units have been installed in three dental rooms and nine treatment rooms in a project to improve the air quality in the hospitals and increase patient turnaround in a clean and safe environment. The DePuro Pro unit comes in two sizes, it is a plug and play set up and uses two HEPA 14 filters which retain up to 99.995% of particulates including virus, bacteria and droplets within the air.

Dean Hill and Mark Coutts from Essex based contractors TH Electrical said: “We worked alongside VORTICE to specify the DePuro Pro to effectively clean and purify the air in these hospitals. As we know from the science, good indoor air quality is vital to the fight against the spread of Covid19 and we’re delighted that these units are already starting to make a difference after only two weeks of being used.” For more information about the DePuro Pro and other products from VORTICE visit

Clinical Waste Management Cromwell Polythene’s Sansafe® and clinical waste management ranges are designed to support the care sector in their infection prevention and control procedures, for washroom, sanitary and clinical waste. Special consideration is needed when dealing with clinical waste, which requires different treatment and disposal methods appropriate to the hazard it may present. Our range includes refuse sacks, wheeled bin liners, tiger stripe sacks for deep landfill of offensive/hygiene waste, yellow sacks certified to UN standards for incineration of hazardous waste and orange UN standard sacks for alternative treatment of infectious and potentially infectious waste at a licensed or permitted facility The most recent addition to the Sansafe® range is tiger stripe sacks incorporating Biomaster silver antimicrobial technology, added during the film extrusion process. This inhibits the growth of harmful bac-

teria, including E. coli and Legionella. Pine Scentmaster® fragrance helps mask unpleasant odours. These features eliminate the need to add separate antimicrobial products and intoxicating fragrances. The tiger stripe sacks are designed for the collection and disposal of offensive/hygiene waste collection, which can be disposed of through Energy from Waste (EFW), incineration or deep landfill. Typical examples of this type of waste include non-infectious used gloves, masks, dressings, incontinence waste, and sanitary products. Any liner used in a care setting – whether for hazardous, sanitary, or general waste – should have been independently tested to prove its effectiveness and safety. Check for recognised quality standards including the Cleaning and Hygiene Suppliers Association (CHSA) certification mark for refuse sacks and EN and ISO standards. Visit

Unigloves Expands Its PPE Range Hand protection specialist Unigloves is expanding its product portfolio with the launch of a range of sanitising hand gels and facemasks. Added to its range to help in the fight against Covid19, the new products complement Unigloves’ range of disposable gloves designed for use across a wide range of industrial sectors including healthcare and care homes. Available in 480ml and 200ml pump dispenser and 50ml flip top sizes, the new 70% alcohol hand gel with added Vitamin E kills 99.9% of all bacteria. Fast-drying, leaving the hands feeling soft and smooth, the new gel also moisturises the hands, making it ideal for the healthcare sector and high use environments. Joining the hand gels is Unigloves’ Profil facemasks. Available in boxes of 50, the 3 ply, pleated Type II facemasks have a Bacterial Filtration Efficiency (BFE) of 98%. Tested to EN14683 the facemasks are manufactured from soft, non-

woven fabric with integrated noseband and soft ear loops for a comfortable, secure fit. “Our hand gels and facemasks are part of our global response to the Covid-19 outbreak, which has seen us manufacturing for the NHS and a wide range of healthcare-associated settings both in the UK and internationally. “In tandem with our extensive gloves range, the combination of hand protection and respiratory protection, provides companies with an effective solution to the increased focus on hygiene protocols,” said Unigloves’ Marketing Director, Donald Gillespie. For more information on the range of hand gels and facemasks from Unigloves, visit and .


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL CTU Services' Thermal Access System With the introduction of various measures to constrain and manage the emergency of COVID-19 in the UK, CTU Services Thermal Access System presents the ideal solution. To address the challenge of social distancing many public places are implementing restrictions on customer flow. This includes locations such as the hospitality industry and the retail sector. CTU Services perfectly resolves the problem of "how to accurately and efficiently control customer flow in a premises" Their system detects how many people are present in the targeted area and display the figure in real-time. If the capacity is reached the system's display immediately indicates no more people should enter. The two systems that CTU Services supply can be merged together to give you more security and social distancing. The Thermal camera can be wall mounted or comes on a sleek stand. It will also notify

any number of members of staff of any issues with potential clients entering the premisses via text or email. • Facial recognition is fully integrated with body temperature monitoring. This means no additional staff are required. • The solution is contactless, reducing the risk of cross infection. • Extensive storage of facial images and temperature information enabling easy historical access. • Fast facial recognition and temperature monitoring reducing access congestion. In Scotland will detect if you are or are not wearing a mask / face covering. • Integration with third party products such as turnstiles and VMS. See a demonstration of the system at For further information, see the advert this page, call 01257 477060 or visit

Sheffcare Teams Up with Haigh Sheffcare continue to stay at the forefront of resident health, safety, and care. With ten homes across the city of Sheffield, Sheffcare a leading care charity, serves the needs of more than 500 older people and is strongly committed to providing high quality, compassionate care which enhances quality of life. Like a clean kitchen, often the most important aspects of infection prevention are out of sight. Best in class providers continue to invest in their facilities, ever-improving client health and experience. Most recently, Sheffcare has upgraded its waste management to Haigh's disposal units. These allow the hygienic disposal of disposable toileting items, simplifying and improving a challenging task for staff, reducing cross infection risks, and helping drive down long-term costs. Sheffcare noted "Investments like this are taken only once we have strong evidence. We trialled the

Please Please mention mentionTHE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.

Haigh Quattro and Haigh Incomaster at several of our sites. The improvement was noticeable, improving resident experience and for our care staff." Haigh has been designing bed pan disposers since the 1950s, supporting hospitals across the UK and worldwide, while investing in the UK economy. For further information, visit


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Electrox Sterilising Water Electrox Sterilising Water is an ecological disinfectant that kills viruses, bacteria, spores and fungi significantly faster than bleach and other traditional disinfectants. It is 80 x more effective than bleach, no alcohol, non corrosive, pH neutral and hypoallergenic. The active substance in Electrox is hypochlorous acid, which has been successfully tested for full virucidal activity as defined in EN14476:2013, and has activity against all viruses. This includes all coronaviruses and SARS-CoV-2. When used with fogging machines, Electrox can sanitise care homes rapidly, with minimal disruption and without the harsh chemicals found in traditional disinfectants. Electrox customer Eddy Pyatt, Director of Platinum Care Homes

says “We’re using Electrox Sterilising Water and the fogging machine in four of our Care Homes and have found it provides real peace of mind and assurance to our residents and their visitors. We are fogging communal areas, outdoor visiting areas in between visits and resident’s rooms within our care homes to make sure we’re providing a sanitised environment for our staff, residents and their visitors alike. We wanted a sanitising product that didn’t involve large amounts of chemicals and found Electrox to be the most cost effective of all the solutions we looked at.” Contact Electrox today: 0117 318 0830

Sanozone. The Easy Way To Sanitise 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-toreach 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, or visit the website at

Elgin Bay Offer The Mac500 Proven Solution to Combating Coronavirus panies and individuals in the fight against the spread of coronavirus. We have not invented a miracle cure for coronavirus that can stand alone, but we may have one of the weapons needed to reduce the infection”, explains Michael Kløcker, JIMCO A/S. Elgin Bay are the UK suppliers of Jimco UVC and Ozone technology. The Mac500 is an air purifier developed and manufactured in Denmark by Jimco, that reduces viruses in the air. With the air purifier the reduction of viruses is both fast and significant, achieving 99.99% reduction within 3 hours. A study from a technological institute in Denmark states that The MAC500 effectively reduces viruses from the air. In rooms where the air purifier is in use, The study documents that the MAC500 reduces viruses in the air by 89 percent in one hour. After two hours, the virus is reduced by 99 percent, and after three hours, the reduction is 99.9 percent. “We have tested the air purifier on a virus that is 7-10 times more resistant to UV light than coronavirus. The results of this study are very uplifting right now, because we are all trying our best to avoid infections”, says Michael Kløcker, business unit manager at JIMCO A/S. The MAC500 air purifier works partly by burning harmful particles such as viruses with the help of UV-C rays, and partly by letting out a small amount of ozone, which can destroy bacteria and viruses. The amount of ozone is equal to the amount occurring in nature by the Sun. “You can use the air purifier everywhere, and our greatest customer segments are businesses and industries where it is difficult to keep distance or where customers are at a greater risk”. “It is very common to use air purifiers in Care Homes, Hospitals, Dentists and in private homes where you feel extra exposed”. “The aim is to strengthen the indoor climate as well as limiting the spread of viruses through the air”, Matthew Cove, MD at Elgin Bay explains. “We are very happy that we are able to offer a product that can help both com-

About MAC500:

The MAC500 air purifier has been on the market for nearly 20 years and is already operating in many homes and workplaces around the world. Other benefits include: • Reduction in Virus/Bacteria/Fungi • Reduction in Odour within the room • Reduces indoor air pollution and eliminates the sources of headaches, respiratory problems (COPD/Asthma) For further information, please contact Matthew Cove on 07920 254379 or The report can be requested by contacting or downloaded here: 2407_ms2-test.pdf


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL AtmoSan Supports Safety at Avery Care Homes In a further step to ensure that its care homes continue to be some of the safest places to live, Avery Healthcare has deployed AtmoSan systems to all of its services. As a part of its comprehensive approach to hygiene and sanitisation, supported by extensive staff training, it is now using AtmoSan Fogging machines, a ULV ultra-fine droplet cold fogging system, to provide complete room decontamination, prior to a new resident moving in and for regular cleaning and virus prevention. AtmoSan is a specialist manufacturer of decontamination solutions

against surface and airborne pathogens, and its advanced Biocide is completely natural, 100% safe and non-toxic to humans, animals and plants. Accredited and approved to multiple European and British Standards sanitisation standards, it kills 99.999% of all known pathogens, including viruses such as norovirus, MS2 and the coronavirus, bacteria such as Campylobacter, fungi, spores and moulds. Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses, meaning they are one of the easiest types of viruses to kill with an appropriate disinfectant product. Biocide Regulatory Agencies such as the USA Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) employ a ‘hierarchy-based’

approach for new virus strains, meaning a product such as Biocide that is found to be effective against harder-to-kill viruses is likely to kill a virus such as COVID-19. Tony Devenish from AtmoSan was thrilled at the agreement; “We are delighted to partner with Avery Healthcare in providing an effective aerial and surface disinfection solution for their 56 care homes nationwide. It is a privilege to work with such a proactive care group and to be able to contribute towards increased resident safety and providing peace of mind for their families in these difficult times.” Director of Care and Quality for the Avery Group, Julie Spencer, was similarly enthusiastic with the project roll-out: “After testing and a pilot phase, we are confidently deploying the AtmoSan systems to all our homes as part of the fight against the coronavirus and other health risks. It’s a great addition to our other protocols and will help keep our residents, staff and their respective families safe when in an Avery environment.” Find out more at

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. Angloplas’ range of dispensers are produced in the world’s first proven Antimicrobial PVC with silver ion technology and which is

Clean Air Solutions There are a lot of cost-effective equipment that could be put in place quickly and easily to actively assist in lowering or eliminating the virus contaminated particles of any room helping eliminate the spread of viruses. Air and Surface Treatments are the most effective method for treating all manner of smells, viruses, volatile organic compounds and all other airborne and surface contaminants. These type of unit utilise either O³ (Ozone) or OH (Hydroxyl) Ozone is created when the kind of oxygen we breathe O² is split apart into single oxygen atoms. Single oxygen atoms can re-join to make O², or they can join with O² molecules to make ozone (O³) when the energy is available to do so. Ozone breaks down when it reacts with other compounds, harmful viruses included.

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 and clicking Hospital, Health and Hygiene or by using the Quick Response code. The machines that produce Ozone in higher effective concentrations must be used in unoccupied spaces, high concentrations of Ozone can cause issues with the respiratory system, with this said they are extremely effective at sanitising a space (airborne and surfaces) after a manual clean down. Hydroxyl machines are by far the most user friendly, firstly because they’re more adaptable and easily integrate into our normal daily lives. Much like the Ozone units, a volatile OH compound is produced which reacts with all airborne contaminants. The OH compound reacts by oxidizing and this cascade reaction will continue until the area is free of contaminants, the OH particles will then simply become H²O once there is nothing left to react with. Hydroxyl units are safe for use in constantly occupied rooms and will provide the constant decontamination required in a busy office. For more information please contact Axair Fans to discuss your requirements. 01782 349439



Germgard from Fireco With the outbreak of COVID-19, good hygiene practice has become more important than ever before. Fireco has recently released its newest innovation, Germgard, a smart sanitiser combined with digital signage. Germgard has been designed to promote awareness of the importance of hand sanitisation to all building users. It can also be tailored to suit individual business needs, helping as a building management tool. Some examples of potential messaging includes instructing users to follow your one-way system or putting on a mask before entering. Germgard is a smart sanitising station which monitors people passing through your chosen doorways. A PIR sensor will detect someone approaching and a screen will show your personalised message. Germgard can also be combined with a range of door systems so that the use of hand sanitiser is a requirement before gaining entry. Integration options include electronic door locks, automatic doors, and access control systems. James Wheeler, Chief Commercial Officer at Fireco says, “Our customers require visual, physical products as evidence in promoting their return to work strategy to their workforce. Germgard meets those requirements, ensuring best practice, encouraging occupants to self-police when moving around the building.”


As lockdown restrictions started lifting in July, businesses had

to plan their back to work strategy in line with the Government’s Health & Safety Executive COVID-19 Risk Assessment guidelines. Staff and members are detected when entering the building, they are presented with a digital display asking them to sanitise their hands. Castle Snooker & Sports Bar chose to connect their Germgard system with their electronic door lock, meaning that the door will only unlock for people who have used the sanitiser unit. This reduces the possibility of human error when controlling the transfer of germs. “Germgard has played a vital role in making our COVID Secure Strategy strikingly obvious to our customers. We wanted to ease anxiety and make sure our members feel safe when returning to the new normal.” “I would recommend Fireco. They have helped us to reopen our business safely.” Fireco manufactures wireless fire door closers and retainers, notification systems, disability aid products and hygiene equipment, all designed to provide simple solutions to a range of needs: fire safety, compliance, access, ventilation and hygiene. Fireco’s operations are in alignment with International Standard ISO 9001:2015. All of our products meet relevant British and European fire safety standards. With some products gaining primary test evidence with fire door manufacturers. For more information about Germgard or how Fireco solutions can assist with COVID-secure strategies, visit or call the Fireco team today 01273 320650.

Antimicrobial Handle Helps Boost Care Homes’ Active Protection Methods Against Bacteria Care homes can now help to reduce the spread of bacteria using a maintenancefree, antimicrobial surface for door hardware. HOPPE has developed SecuSan®, an antibacterial and antimicrobial surface for door and window handles, to help ensure high hygiene standards wherever people are present in large numbers. SecuSan® immediately suppresses the growth of pathogens on the handle on a lasting basis. Independent tests have proved that SecuSan® reduces microbial growth by more than 99%. Andy Matthews, head of sales at HOPPE (UK), said: “SecuSan® is ideal for facilities managers trying to take care of high traffic buildings. In these types of buildings where there is so much to monitor and keep clean, SecuSan® helps to maintain high hygiene standards. It actively fights bacteria and fungi from the moment it is installed and is wear-free on a long term basis. This is particularly important in care homes where residents are much more vulnerable.”

Protecting Staff And Residents with Continual Airborne Sanitisation The COVID-19 pandemic raises particular challenges for care home residents, their families and the staff that look after them. With no end in sight and millions of pounds being spent every day on cleaning and sanitisation methods that are costly and labour intensive. SOH Group has a revolutionary new product ‘SOH Pure’ that is already helping thousands of people and businesses by continuously sanitising their premises. The SOH Pure systems work in a similar way to that of a fogger but is an ‘always on’ solution that continually sanitises an area of up to 80m2. Achieved by cold air diffusion technology liquid is turned into a vapour the is lighter than air. This vapour

cleans and sanitises the air whilst airborne and then sanitises all surfaces when it falls creating a unique dual action air and surface approach. Using the SOH Pure system will help reduce the amount of time that is required cleaning and will help re continually sanitise high traffic areas, such as staff gathering hot spots building entrances , lobbies and delivery zones and more. Let us help you today give your staff and residents that extra piece of mind! Get in touch for more details and other environmentally friendly products 02037276400, or

The surface can be applied to a wide range of popular HOPPE handle designs including the Amsterdam and Paris series, all available in aluminium silver and stainless steel. It is also covered by HOPPE’s 10-year operational guarantee that applies to all HOPPE door and window handles. For more information on SecuSan®, please contact Andy on or 01902 484 400.



LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS JLA's Ozone Washing System Proven To Remove All Traces of Coronavirus in University Study of Infected Laundry

Treating coronavirus-infected laundry with a professional ozone washing system could have major implications for the future of infection control for the care sector, according to new research. The in-depth study carried out at De Montfort University in Leicester found that the OTEX washing system, which uses ozone to kill bacteria even at low temperatures, completely removes all traces of coronavirus (OC43), a model virus for SARS-CoV-2. The system, created by JLA (the UK’s leading supplier of commercial laundry equipment) was tested by a research team overseen by Dr Katie Laird, Reader in Microbiology and Head of the Infectious Disease Research Group, and expert virologist Dr Maitreyi Shivkumar, Lecturer in Molecular Biology. The research found that cleaning with the OTEX technology completely removed the coronavirus, even in large washing loads. Additional testing also proved that the virus was not transferred to other textiles in the wash. Believed to be one of the first studies of its kind, the research proves that coronavirus-infected laundry can be cleaned even at low temperatures, allowing heat sensitive items such as personal clothing, hospital mattress covers, emergency rescue wear and microfibre items to be cleaned effectively. Dr Laird and her team are now completing the next stage of their research, looking at the rate at which the virus is inactivated in the cleaning process to give more data on the length of time and quantities of ozone required for the virus to be eliminated. Dr Laird comments, “A key element of tackling the spread of COVID-19 is to understand how effective infec-

tion control can be implemented in real world settings. There are a variety of situations in which textiles potentially carrying the virus need to be cleaned, such as care homes, hospitals and hotels. “Until now we have had little data about how the virus responded to different types of cleaning. These initial results demonstrate that cleaning with ozone, as in the OTEX system, completely removes the model coronavirus. “This held true even when treating larger loads of washing, as is likely to be the case in a real laundry setting. This result can give reassurance that such cleaning is effective .” The implications of these findings are hugely significant for the healthcare sector in the fight against COVID19 and the protection of both service users and staff. The financial and environmental benefits are equally as impressive. Research shows that over the average sevenyear lifespan of a standard 30kg thermal disinfection cycle, using OTEX can reduce operating costs by over £130,000, whilst also reducing the businesses total carbon footprint by over 400 tonnes. Helen Ashton, CEO from JLA commented “I am really excited about the results of these tests as here at JLA we play our part in eradicating this terrible virus. We have been developing and refining the OTEX laundry system for over fifteen years and its benefits to our customers are clear - full eradication of disease, including coronavirus, even at low temperatures and a significant reduction in operational cost coupled with a meaningful benefit to the environment. “The system has been designed to be easy to use with real time verification of the disinfection process on every wash which provides a unique audit trail of full compliance to regulatory standards.” This is the latest accolade for JLA’s innovative OTEX system, having been previously recognised by the NHS Rapid Review Panel in 2009 set up by the government to fast track new technology to address hospital acquired infections, achieving the highest grade (level 1) for infection control products. More recently, assessment of compliance with current Public Health England HTM01-04 guidelines for the decontamination of healthcare linen. The OTEX ozone system is also fully supported in line with the EU Biocidal Products Regulation. For more information about OTEX by JLA, please visit: or see the advert on the facing page.

Forbes Professional Helps the Care Industry Adhere to Stringent Laundry Regulations For a care home, their laundry operation is always a central part of the infection control that has never been more pressing than today. The Department of Health’s CFPP 01-14 guidelines state that each wash cycle must provide the requisite disinfection. Machines must be also approved to WRAS category 5 due to elevated risks of contamination. In order to meet stringent laundry hygiene standards, PPE is essential as are established processes to enable efficient transportation and procedural segregation of clean and soiled items. As standard, CFPP 01-04 requires that laundry is washed in a commercial washing machine at the highest possible temperature. For enhanced hygiene requirements, all washing cycles must have a thermal disinfection cycle that reaches 71°C for at least three minutes, or 65°C for at least ten minutes. Forbes is proud to be partnered with Miele which enables us to provide highly efficient commercial laundry solutions to care homes and the NHS. The new, highly programmable and user-friendly Little Giant range from Miele provides thermal disinfection at 85°C for 15 minutes to kill viruses and bacteria. It is

also WRAS approved to category 5 and delivers faster wash cycles and impressively low energy consumption, making it an ideal choice for any care environment. Our laundry solutions include a complementary site survey, free installation, commissioning and user training as well as a first-class service support, at no extra cost for the life of the contract. Contact, call 0345 070 2335 or see the advert on page 37.

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

0151 317 3127

months part and labour warranty. The environment is at the forefront of every operator’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


Washer Extractors

Tumble Dryers

Cost Quality Service Design Innovation

Flatwork Ironers

Other Equipment


TRAINING Free 30 Day No-Obligation Trial Access to Our High Speed Training Endorsed By Skills for Care ESS Care Industry-Leading TENDERTRACKER 100’s of Care Funding Opportunities When you subscribe we will give you a free no-obligation one-month trial of the ESS TENDERTRACKER. PLUS Free access to accredited online Level 2 CARE CERTIFICATE COURSES plus many others once your full membership is confirmed at the end of your 30 day Free Trial Period. Monthly Subscribers access to 5 Free courses at ESS Online Learning worth a minimum of £210 Annual Subscribers access to 10 Free courses at ESS Online Learning worth a minimum of £420 And remember our online learning offer includes 25+ courses which count towards the Level 2 Care Certificate. ESS Online Learning:

PLUS • Weekly priority notifications of tenders and funding opportunities • Daily notifications of your tender interest requests sent directly to your inbox • Access to supply chain funding opportunities • Access to the ESS Care bid writing team with in excess of over £350m bid wins Commercial Care Providers - We offer special discounted commercial rates for all our ESS Online Learning Courses enquire at: For further details, please email us at or call 01977 705203. Register on the ESS Care TENDERTRACKER for further details

Engage With Your Residents - In-House Practical Training Workshop Scripts Bring About Happy Days Happy Days Dementia Activities & Design has created a new range of engagement training scripts for residential care and dementia homes. The workshops are designed to be presented in-house, saving time and costs. Easy to follow training scripts are practical in nature and help care teams engage with elderly and people living with dementia. Through activity, discussions, roleplay and practise with nostalgic materials, carers can feel more equipped to engage and enrich social care. Packages include demonstration materials to use during your workshop. Training Scripts and engagement materials can be created to suit your organisation, care team requirements and resident interests. Ideal for home care services too - Help your carers engage

and create meaningful moments during visits. With Covid19’s restrictions and safety procedures, it makes sense to train your care teams on site. ‘Bringing your care teams together can build carer confidence, boost morale and uplift mood. If a carer feels good, this will reflect on the the person being cared for’ says Gillian Hesketh, MD of Happy Days Dementia Activities & Design. Passionate about helping people living with dementia to live well, Happy Days also supplies nostalgic displays, reminiscence baskets, conversation prompts and more - See The Carer front page or Shop Online: We accept NHS purchase order numbers and care home accounts. Phone Gillian direct on: 07971-953620 or see the advert on page 1.

High Speed Training is proud to announce that we’re a Skills for Care endorsed training provider! This means our online training courses make a significant difference, not only to the learner but also to the person accessing care and support. Skills for Care Endorsed Provider What Does it Mean for High Speed Training Learners? Our mission has always been to deliver training that helps people to be engaged, effective and safe in the career they’ve chosen. We work tirelessly to ensure all our online courses are relevant and meaningful to a variety of sectors and roles. Skills for Care endorsement is a trusted quality mark only awarded to the best learning and development providers within the social care sector. We welcome High Speed Training to Skills for Care

endorsement. They’ve demonstrated dedicated commitment to the core requirements, such as effective leadership and management, robust quality assurance, equal opportunities for staff development as well as keeping learners central to all learning and development. We look forward to working with High Speed Training in the future. Receiving Skills for Care endorsement is highly significant for our learners who work in social care and demonstrates our commitment to constantly providing the best training and support we possibly can. Businesses all over the world have been using their resources to help during the COVID-19 pandemic wherever they can. We worked hard to develop a course that would inform people how to use PPE safely. This information was so important that we gave the course away for free to those who work in front line healthcare. To this date, we have trained over 6,000 people in safe PPE practices for free. For more information and guidance related to COVID19, simply visit covid-19-courses-resources/

Care Certificate by Laser Learning During the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, many employees were furloughed, whilst others (such as those in Care Homes and the NHS) bravely worked on the frontline and continue to do so. Here at Laser Learning, we are proud to have supported both of these groups, in different ways. This was achieved through the Laser Care Certificate course and CPD short courses. The Laser Care Certificate course provides knowledge to cover every standard included in the official Skills for Care specification. Every lesson includes bespoke video tutorials specifically for the Care Certificate course, as well as reading materials and good practice examples. Furthermore, a mandatory quiz at the end of each lesson (which requires a 100% pass mark) ensures both competence and confidence. Managers are able to create their own accounts to enrol staff on the course and track their progress. All of the content is accessible remotely via computer, smartphone or tablet, enabling

care professionals to make progress towards the certificate in a way that suits their circumstances. Additionally, Laser delivers CPD short courses to help the ongoing development of skills and expertise of both furloughed staff, who had the silver lining of time on their side, as well as those working through the pandemic amidst concerns of job security. Two courses in particular – ‘Causes and Spread of Infection’ and ‘Infection Control and Prevention’ – were especially popular during this period. Unlimited use subscriptions are available at affordable rates, for organisations wishing to take advantage of a large number of short courses. Whether you are an owner, manager or independent learner, please don't hesitate to get in touch for a free demo of the Care Certificate course platform, and/or the CPD short course offering. The Laser Learning team can be contacted on or +44 (0)1753 584 112. See the advert on this page for further details.



Fall Savers - Affordable Fall Monitoring Solutions Fall Savers®, are an experienced market leading healthcare provider of resident safety solutions for over 15 years.

FALL SAVERS ® WIRELESS MONITOR Eliminate all cables with our new generation falls management solutions! Upgrade your falls programme with the latest technology from Fall Savers®. The NEW Fall Savers® Wireless eliminates the cord between the monitor and sensor pad. This results in less work for nursing staff, improved safety for patients and reduced wear and tear on sensor pads. Wireless advantages include the ability to use one monitor with two sensor pads simultaneously and support for many new wireless devices.

Benefits include: Safer for patients; less work for staff Bed and chair pads available One monitor works with two sensor pads Integrates with most nurse call systems A variety of options, including: Call button

Pager Floor sensor mat Wireless door/window exit alerts

TREADNOUGHT ®FLOOR SENSOR PAD The TreadNought® Floor Sensor Pad is built to last with a durable construction that far out lasts the competition. Our anti-bacterial floor sensor pad is compatible with most nurse call systems or can be used with a portable pager to sound an alert when a person steps on to the sensor pad. Caregivers typically place the sensor pad at the bedside, in a doorway or other locations to monitor persons at risk for falls or wandering. An optional anti-slip mesh reduces the potential for slippage on hard surface floors.

Features include: Connects directly to most nurse call systems High Quality anti-bacterial Floor Sensor Pad Large Size Pad: Measures (L) 91cm x (H) 61cm Options (sold separately): Anti-slip mesh for hard surface floors See the advert on this page for further details.

Aid Call Nurse Call Systems Aid Call has been leading the way in wireless nurse-call systems for over 40 years. We offer a wide range of products and bespoke solutions. All of our products have been developed following feedback from our customers who are the forefront of care delivery. We tailor our offering

life easier and more efficient for your staff and are simple for residents to use too. The combination of flexibility and functionality allows you to focus on the most effective care delivery, rather than being constrained by the limitations of technology. Our nurse call systems are not only powerful,

specifically to each individual customers require-

functional and reliable, but also robust enough to

ments to ensure you get the perfect system for

withstand the demands of a care or nursing home

your needs.

environment of any size or scale.

Aid Call wireless nurse call systems can make

See the advert on page 1 for further information.

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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. Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.

Wireless Fall Prevention

By Ben Kilbey – Business Development Manager, Spearhead Healthcare

The last thing any care home wants to have to deal with is an elderly resident falling in their home. However, with over 255,000 hospital admissions in England a year relating to the elderly suffering injury after a fall, being alert and aware as soon as a fall happens is critically important in the administration of aid; as well as helping reduce emotional distress. For years, the care industry has used a tremendous range of call alert solutions to help care home staff respond to these falls quickly and easily. The most popular and regularly used of these are systems which plug in to nurse call systems. Nonetheless, these come with their own issues and can often create their own risks in regard to falling; largely in the use of trailing cables that need to be plugged in to make them work. These potential trip hazards can cause the exact issues they are trying to prevent. But with new innovations come new solutions, and we are increasingly seeing a range of wireless solutions that provide a variety of benefits. Below we list things to look out for when selecting these systems:


When looking at a wireless solution, make sure it truly is wireless and that any receivers, or sending features on the items are contained and are not left loose where someone can catch a foot on it, or accidently rip it out.


Edison Telecom

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 “legacy”, 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 exten-

Care home staff cannot be chained to their desk and need to be checking on residents and conducting all the duties that are required to create a smooth-running home, filled with happy residents. A wireless alert that can be carried in a pocket allows the user to respond as swiftly as possible to potential falls, helping homes provide the highest level of care. A centralized alert system is an option that also presents many benefits, as homes can ensure that the right person in the right place is alerted in a timely manner. Making sure that a system works both centrally and on the move, giving you the best range of options to help provide a high level of care.


While this might very well be viewed as a smaller issue, nurse call systems come with a huge variety of plug types; and ensuring that your receivers have the correct plugs for your call system is key.


Make sure the system you choose is as unobtrusive as possible. Often fall prevention equipment is designed to be as hidden as possible. Should the item be particularly obvious make sure you are happy it fits as well as possible into the decor of the room it sits in and think about choosing a floormat that corresponds with the flooring in the room e.g. wood effect vinyl or carpet. Spearhead are proud to distribute the entire Alerta wireless range that has been launched this year. See the advert on this page for details. sion to life, adds Bob, “Edison 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.”


NURSE CALL AND FALL PREVENTION A Digital Future of Care in a Post COVID-19 Era After 50 years being at the forefront of advances in Nurse Call solutions, Courtney Thorne continue to develop solutions which now seem more relevant and important than at any time before. The introduction of digital care planning and medication solutions has enabled forward thinking care homeowners to go paperless, giving more accurate, timely and readily available information on those in their care. These same digital devices, tablets and smart mobiles can now be used to view calls and emergencies generated by a Courtney Thorne nurse call system. Both new installations and many existing Courtney Thorne systems can benefit with calls being delivered straight to the carer. Monitoring of resident’s care planning and medications are just two areas that reduces the amount of paperwork and administration, freeing up carers to spend more time actually caring. The monitoring of the caring staff themselves can become arduous and time consuming for management, not with a Courtney Thorne nurse call solution. The introduction of Staff ID tags of fobs is nothing new, there are so called systems on the market which use simple magnets which carers need to remember to press onto a room sensor when they attend, and again when they leave a resident’s room. With Courtney Thorne’s Altra Tag the process of logging who attended, what time they attended and how long they remained in the resident’s room is all logged automatically and seamlessly. No longer are there management and staff disputes about forgetting to “fob in/fob out”. The volume and detail of the data captured automatically by a Courtney Thorne nurse call system is vast. All the data is available to management using the reporting function built into the main touch screen server. However, where visiting the home is difficult due to COVID-19 restrictions or time and distance problems,

TumbleCare from Easylink 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.

owners and managers may find retrieving data difficult, resulting in a lack of monitoring and possible reduction in quality of care delivered. Courtney Thorne’s CT-Cloud service provides ready complied, detailed reports daily, coupled with a “live” view of all data contained in the server from any location with an internet connection. Carrying out regular checks on sleeping residents is time consuming and often counter-productive as residents often wake, have poor sleep and can even fall after attempting to use the toilet once awake. Acoustic monitoring means that only those who actually need assistance get it, those who are sound asleep do not get disturbed and carers can concentrate on more productive tasks. So, in this new COVID-19 and Digital world what other new solutions are on the horizon? Nurse call devices around a care home become intelligent enough to identify a resident in need. Already we can measure changes in levels of noise, but monitoring light, temperature coupled with wearable devices monitoring vital signs, now a deterioration in a resident’s wellbeing can raise an alert or be recorded. A resident ‘connected’ with a wearable device can have their movement, location, heart rate, sleep, blood pressure etc., monitored automatically. Instead of intrusive, often unsocial physical monitoring, at-risk residents have vital signs checked and recorded continuously. If an emergency occurs, the nurse call system will still summon help, only now one of its key functions will be to record, store and make available critical data. Thereby reducing the touch points, minimising transmission of disease, freeing up carers time and providing a safer and healthier life for both residents and staff. For further information visit or see the advert on this page.

Lotus Care Technology 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 for details.

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. Visit or see the advert on page 45 for details.


TECHNOLOGY & SOFTWARE CARE VISION Friends of the Elderly Selects Softworks Employee Rostering and 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, cloudbased 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 housekeeping 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 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 or call 0208 768 9809. See the advert on page 46 for details.

Time and Attendance Software for its Care Homes

Friends of the Elderly has been supporting and caring for older people since 1905.Their Care Homes provide residential, dementia, nursing and respite care dedicated to providing quality care with dignity. The organisation is passionate about its work and strives to provide quality care while continually evolving. As part of this ethos the organisation went to market looking for a solution to help transform and improve Employee Time, Attendance, Rostering and Skills Management within their network of Care Homes and after an extensive selection process selected Softworks. Commenting on the selection Sharon Nunn, Group Financial Controller of Friends of the Elderly said “Last Summer we identified that implementing a Workforce Management System to manage our employee Time, Attendance, Rostering and Skills would bring significant improvements to the everyday running of our Care Homes. We were using spreadsheets to manage key areas such as hours worked rosters, leave, absences, holiday requests and skills and this was becoming very complex and labour intensive.” “We knew streamlining and automating processes in these areas and removing time consuming paper-based admin would give both Managers and Healthcare Staff better oversight and more time to focus on the provision of excellent care within our Care Homes.”

Care Control Systems Care Control Systems Ltd is proud to create the UK's best Care Management Software designed for use within all standard, niche and complex care settings. Care Control has been in constant development since 2010 and was made commercially available in 2016. Since then we have expanded across hundreds of providers within the UK and are well recognised as leaders in our field. Care Control is used by over 15,000 care professionals daily across the UK in multiple service types ensuring their

“After meeting with a number of solution providers we chose Softworks because they really understood our requirements as a Care Home provider. They had a proven track record and were ready, willing and able to configure their system to our specific requirements rather than us needing to alter our work practices to fit in with their system.” “Aside from this we were impressed by the extensive functionality offered by the Softworks Workforce Management Software such as the complete HR module, Skills, Training and Expense Management modules, Compliance, Employee Self-Service and Payroll Integration.” Commenting on the project, Paresh Vadukul, Healthcare Relationship Manager, Softworks UK said “Friends of the Elderly focus on their residents first and we do the same. Our primary concern is enabling Care Homes to deliver the best level of care they can. Our Software makes sure they have the right person with the right skillset rostered at the right time no matter the circumstances and removes that admin burden from employee management. We were delighted to be selected by such a respected organisation as Friends of the Elderly.” See the advert on the facing page for details,

services have live, up-to-date essential information. Located in Tavistock, Devon our expert team is comprised of numerous industry specialists with many years of direct, hands-on care experience. This is one of our key USP’s. Our Managing Director, Matt Luckham started the creation of the original Care Control Software in 2010 with the aim to provide essential, accurate information for Spring House Care House in Devon. Matt had purchased Spring House in 2010. Matt developed the software and then spent 6 years proving its functionality within Spring House. It soon became apparent the software could add real value to other service providers and after numerous requests we decided to commercialise

the software. In 2016 Care Control Systems Ltd was founded and since then has gone from strength-to-strength with exponential growth. We now have an exceptional team of more than 20 staff who have over 70 years of direct hands-on care experience between them. On top of this our team of Software Developers are experts in their field and are constantly developing our products to ensure they offer everything our customers expect in what is a particularly complex sector. 2020 has been a record year for Care Control with record numbers of customers choosing us, office expansion, overseas sales and an ever growing team to name just a few things. We are so excited for the future! Visit or see the advert below for further details.

Reliable Technology Can Be the Difference Between Your Care Home Getting By or Excelling As a healthcare professional, your goal is to deliver the best care for your residents, but you can’t focus on them if you’re constantly struggling with unreliable, under-performing technology. Here at EC Computers we specialise in technology management for Care Home. We take care of all your IT, preventing technical issues from ever happening, and providing powerful solutions that help you streamline operations and improve staff and resident experiences. Our OnePoint Solutions improve both staff and resident

satisfaction for Care Homes, these include: Managed IT Services Office 365 Communications and Document storage Data Backup Solutions Virtualization for Groups requiring on premise servers VoIP Solutions to provide flexible working and cheaper calls Desktop and Server Support Cybersecurity Solutions to keep you important data safe

Data Cabling and Infrastructure planning Software applications - CRM - Database - Custom apps Would your Care Home benefit from Managed IT Services? We believe every Care Home can achieve more with help from a Managed Services Provider (MSP), but you’ll need information to make your own decision. So please contact us today, or call us direct on 0117 200 1000. See the advert on page 47 fpr details.


TECHNOLOGY & SOFTWARE Workforce Scheduling Solutions 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

Alpaka at Askham Village Askham Village Community is a group of specialist homes which provide professional nursing care to young adults and the elderly. Growing organically over the last 30 years, means internal processes have evolved to keep pace with regulatory requirements and the needs of a growing organisation.

Paper-based reporting and recording systems were the norm for rotas, timesheets, annual leave and absence as well as training status and other personnel information. Alpaka software adoption proceeded in four stages, paced to match the staff expectations and available time. 1. Software Champions: An introduction to Staff data & Rotas 2. Management Team: Parallel working with old process and Alpaka 3. Employees: Presence app for clocking in and out with paper timesheets for comparison 4. No more paper, the full digital experience. Askham's 'challenge' is a common scenario in the care sector, mainly where businesses have grown and processes have remained manual and paper-based. It might seem a daunting task, but with the right technology, a digital transformation is possible and profitable. The full case study is available to read on Call Alpaka on 0203 286 6109 or email



5,000th Care Provider Chooses QCS Barnet Carers have become the 5,000th organisation to join the QCS family. In recognition of the historic milestone, QCS rewarded the Finchley-based charity with a free subscription. In this exclusive case study, CEO Mike Rich, talks about the many complex social care challenges his organisation faces, how it is overcoming them and how a hybrid content system, which provides compliance, guidance and technology is proving transformative. How do unpaid carers keep up with regulation, while providing outstanding care to their loved ones? In the London borough of Barnet many rely on Barnet Carers, an independent charity based in Finchley, which provides information, emotional and practical support to many of the estimated 40,000 informal carers living in the borough. But with Covid creating an extra set of regulatory challenges, it was a question that Mike Rich, the CEO of Barnet Carers, had also been pondering. After conducting many hours of research, Mike found the answer. He has chosen to seek the help of Quality Compliance Systems (QCS), which many charities and care providers in the UK have come to rely on for their regulatory requirements, best practice content, and for their technology needs too.


The charity, which has been delivering care in Finchley for over 30 years, is particularly reliant on best practice content – to supply both the informal and professional carers’ in the borough. In doing so, Barnet Carers provides unpaid carers and those they after with access to activities, counselling, training and outings. Mike, who has worked in the voluntary sector for over 30 years, says his staff “provide guidance, advice and emotional support” to carers as young as five years old. He explains, “Often the challenges are extremely complex and nuanced. From an emotional perspective, for instance, it’s often the children who worry constantly about their sick parents, when for most families it’s usually the mother or father that carries the burden. Depending on the severity of their parent’s illness or condition, the anxiety and stress that young carers experience often impacts on education and friendships. A large proportion of child carers are bullied and, most devastatingly, many, who also have to cook, clean and look after their siblings, miss out on their childhoods. Add a second lockdown to the mix and you have a perfect storm. At Barnet Carers, we’re doing everything in our power to not only help carers in these extremely difficult times, but to provide them with some of the opportunities that children from mainstream families take for granted every day.”


Care Home Finance from Global Business Finance

Global assists clients throughout the U.K. who specialise in the healthcare sector to achieve their objectives of purchase, development and refinance. We have organised over £1.8bn for clients in the past 30 years, providing clients with competitively priced funding to refinance existing debt, ease cashflow and develop businesses further. From helping clients make their first purchase through to allowing groups to grow significantly in

size we assist at every stage of your business expansion. Every proposal is individual and deserves to be treated that way, so we hope you will allow us to be of assistance to you and call us to chat through your plans and requirements, I am sure we will be able to tailor a facility to your requirements. Call us on 01242 227172 or e-mail us at


A substantial Grade II Listed former manor house in grounds of over 5 acres. It has been used as a residential home in recent years and offers 36 single rooms, together with ancillary accommodation. The property requires refurbishment and redecoration throughout. Offers In Excess of £2,000,000.

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To ensure that his staff can provide the right advice and guidance, Mike has created a specialist team, who are wholly dedicated to working with young carers. The team provides mentoring, activities, support in schools, tutoring and a raft of other services, which also requires an in-depth understanding of compliance. Mike, explains the importance of compliance in an era of Covid, “To really be able to reach child carers, you have to understand the hurdles they face every day. You also need to do so through the prism of regulation. In this respect, QCS provides us with the regulatory building blocks that we need to do our job. How? Well, we know that when we feed in QCS policies, procedures or best practice content to our care plans, it will be up-to-date, meet regulation, and, most crucially, it will make a genuine difference to them.” In addition to providing support to informal carers, Barnet Carers’ also operates a domiciliary care service, which it established 30 years ago. The home care service, is run by fifty professional care workers, who provide care to 100 people across the borough, that is funded either privately, or by the local authority.


Mike says, “Barnet Carers is well known locally for its home care service. We pride ourselves in providing high quality person-centred care. That means delivering a holistic package of care. Fulfilling service users’ basic care needs – such as ensuring they have the correct medication, preparing meals and helping them to toilet and to shower - is just the tip of the iceberg. Great care is when carers actively engage with service users on a personal level - listening to them, laughing with them and, most importantly, making them feel good about themselves.”


But how is QCS content making a difference to Mike and his team? Mike says that QCS has not only reduced the burden of regulation, but has made content much more accessible to care workers. In the long run, he thinks QCS will probably help to improve efficiency, which will mean that staff can spend more of their working day caring, and less time searching for policies, or updating them. He adds, “In terms of compliance tools, when we asked care staff what they needed most, the response was fairly unanimous. They wanted to be able to find policies and best practice content quickly, and they wanted the content to be easy to read and to understand. QCS ticks all the boxes.” However, as a CEO, it is the vast number of curated policy initiatives – 8,500 pages in all – that Mike feels will add real value to the quality of care that his frontline staff will be able to provide carers and service users in the future. “We’re a relatively small charity and simply don’t have the resources or the expertise to produce this kind of content. QCS’s guidance covers everything from infection, prevention and control and Dementia, to more arcane content such as helping carers care for people with osteoporosis. Now we have access to it, we can provide service users with an even higher standard of care. In the shadow of Covid, that’s both incredibly reassuring and exciting.” For further information on QCS, visit

Hinson Parry Hinson Parry offers a multi disciplinary property service providing a wide and comprehensive range of services to business and individuals. We are Chartered Surveyors, Auctioneers, Valuers, Compulsory Purchase and Compensation Consultants, Land and Estate Agents. Based in Staffordshire, in the heart of the

Midlands, Hinson Parry has a wealth of expertise and experience encompassing local market knowledge as well as operating on a national basis. Visit

Without QCS we wouldn’t have been rated as an ‘outstanding service’ Rupert Stocks Registered Manager, Guyatt House


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Start your free trial today at or call 0330 8087 606


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