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T H E P U B L I C AT I O N F O R N U R S I N G A N D R E S I D E N T I A L C A R E H O M E S

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

The Carer Digital

THECARERUK

THECARERUK

Issue 36

£149m Increased Support for Care Home Testing

Care homes across the country will benefit from additional rapid testing to test staff twice a week to help protect residents and workers from the virus. Staff will be asked to take rapid tests twice a week, in addition to the weekly PCR test they have already been receiving as part of urgent government action to protect those most at risk. A plan that has been accelerated in light of the new, more transmissible, strain of Covid-19. In the event of a positive test in a Tier 4 care home, all staff will additionally be tested daily for seven days. This will be supported by an additional £149 million to fund costs associated with testing staff, and to more safely support family visits in areas outside of Tier 4. The money will pay for care home providers to set up safe testing areas, pro-

vide staff training and contribute towards staff time spent on administering and receiving the tests. This is in addition to the more than £1.1 billion Infection Control Fund and is supported by over 16 million rapid tests and 46 million items of PPE delivered for free to care homes over the last month. Health and Social Care Secretary, Matt Hancock said: “We have worked throughout the pandemic to protect staff, and residents in care homes and today we are boosting rapid testing in care homes, with a further 149 million pounds to support that effort. “All those who work in care homes across England will receive two rapid tests a week, in addition to their weekly PCR test.”

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PAGE 2 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

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 First of all, we at The Carer very much hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas!! It would be an understatement to say that 2020 has been a difficult year for adult social care. But there is not an industry in the country that has risen to the challenge as well as the adult social care sector. I said in my previous Editor’s Viewpoint that we have been privileged to have been able to report the many inspiring and uplifting initiatives from care homes and care environments up and down the country since the pandemic broke. That is not to say we were not getting them before! It is always been a delight to support and report such stories, but this year, as we all know, has been monumentally different. When one looks back on 2020 one realises just how challenging it has been. No government, I think, could have prepared for the events that unfolded in March. That said, we are all aware that some significant mistakes were made. As I have said in previous blogs I do think there will be a “day of reckoning “ at some stage in the future. One of the concerns I had as editor, is the sector being used as a political ball to be kicked around to score political points. As events unfolded, it undoubtedly was! Even an occasional “cynic” was taken aback at the sensationalist reporting. So much so that the government banned Its MPs from appearing on a particular channel to be interviewed. I would like to think that we here at THE CARER are a little more balanced and objective. For me it doesn't matter which party is in power. What matters is that they are doing whatever they can to support the sector. The pandemic has demonstrated to the country the value of social care. In many ways media coverage shone a rather uncompromising light on adult social care. From lack of funding to staffing issues and pay, from means tests and costings, with some people being forced to sell their homes, and, as we saw when the pandemic broke, disjointed care. In this case it resulted in the government releasing COVID infected patients into residential and settings where society’s most vulnerable people were housed. Then came lack of PPE and the crisis management which accompanied it .

Editor

Peter Adams

From a personal point of view we saw first hand how long standing industry suppliers rallied to increase their operation to help minimise shortages. These companies have many years experience in supplying the care sector, with infrastructure in place, yet we saw newly formed companies and/or wholly unrelated companies being awarded multi million pound contracts to source and provide PPE. A BBC report only two weeks ago highlights hospital gowns costing £122 millon that have never been used. The supplier had set up only a month earlier. The sector and longstanding suppliers deserve better! Another issue at the top of the agenda during the pandemic was visits from loved ones, which is set to continue. The damage isolation brought turned out to be as bad, if not worse, as the pandemic itself. From the figures I saw, 82% of dementia patients displayed significant deterioration since lockdown began in March.

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I suspect we are at some stage heading for another national lockdown and the lessons the first lockdown must be heeded. I do believe the rights of those living in care homes must be respected, taking into account quality of life and well-being, and isolation has a devastating effect on both. The sector and the government will be far more prepared than we were in March. We have more knowledge of the virus and how it spreads and we have a vaccination pro-

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gramme in place, enhanced testing capability, readily available PPE equipment, and enhanced training. The care sector is more than capable of assessing and managing risk and balancing the needs of residents! Nothing more from me but to say THANK YOU from all at THE CARER for all your support in 2020. We hope we have done our bit in providing you with news, views , expert comment and products and services without the spin! It has once again been an absolute pleasure during these difficult times to support the sector, even greater pleasure to report fantastic work, initiatives and fundraising care homes, staff and residents have undertaken in the most difficult of circumstances. We send all our very best wishes for 2021 and please do keep your stories, comments and opinions coming to editor@thecareruk.com - we are here to be your voice!

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 3

£149 Million to Support Increased Care Home Testing (CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER...) Visits to care homes can still take place in Tier 4 with arrangements such as substantial screens or visiting pods but, for the safety of loved ones, close-contact indoor visits supported by testing cannot take place in tier 4 areas. Outside of tier 4 areas friends and family are able to visit relatives in care homes that are not currently experiencing an outbreak if they receive a negative result prior to the visit, wear PPE and follow all other infection prevention and control measures. This approach seeks to achieve the right balance between the increased risk of infection transmission and the clear benefits to the mental and physical health of residents and their families which visiting enables. Residents will continue to receive monthly PCR tests, alongside extra testing as directed by their local Health Protection Team if there is an outbreak. Minister for Care, Helen Whately said: “Our priority is to keep care home residents and staff safe, and we have been working hard to make the most of our testing capacity to help people reunite with loved ones as safely as possible. “Now in the face of this new strain, which spreads much more quickly, we are increasing testing in all care homes to help protect those most at risk. This £149million grant will give care homes the tools and support they need to test staff regularly and safely reunite families kept apart because of COVID-19.” Stopping staff movement in and between care settings is critical to minimise the risk of infection of COVID-19 and other viral illnesses. However if care homes need to use staff who work in multiple locations in

order to maintain safe staffing levels, rapid tests will help to manage the increased risk related to employing staff who are working in multiple settings. The new strain transmits more easily than the previous variant but there is no evidence that it is more likely to cause severe disease or mortality. Testing is only part of the approach and it’s essential visitors and staff wear PPE and follow all infection control methods to keep their loved ones, other residents and staff safe. Up to one in three people who have coronavirus have no symptoms and could be spreading it without realising it. Care homes which are facing an outbreak will not be able to receive visitors, apart from in exceptional circumstances such as end of life. Care homes will manage the number of visits to ensure they can enable safe visiting and the programme will be continuously reviewed. The money will be made available early next year and will be distributed via local authorities. Allocations will also be announced early next year. The grant will cover the infrastructure costs of the expanded testing programme including setting up testing areas and resource costs including gaining consent for tests, supervising the use of PPE and swab tests and then processing and logging the results. Care providers today welcomed the news that the Covid-19 vaccine would be going into larger care and nursing homes but expressed their fears that smaller homes could be missing out. The Independent Care Group (ICG) said today’s news that care homes with more than 50 beds would be getting the vaccine as a priority was great news, but expressed concerns that operators with fewer than 50 beds and designated settings were being left behind and that they needed it just as much.

ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “Today’s news is very welcome. The Government said that residents and staff in care and nursing homes would be the top priority for the vaccine and we have been waiting for that to become evident. Although a priority, a lot of care home staff who could visit a hub are also missing out. The Government needs to act on this much faster. “We understand the challenges in transporting and storing the vaccine and the impact that has on distributing it quickly. “Nevertheless, residents in smaller homes need the vaccine too and as these homes operate on tight margins when it comes to staffing levels it is vital that they get vaccinations for their staff as a priority as well. “At best the vaccination of staff across the country is patchy and depends largely on where you live. We need to ensure that all staff can get to hospitals or primary care network hubs to have the vaccination as soon as possible.” Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, said: “As community transmission increases, we recognise the need for care homes to provide additional testing for residents, staff and visitors. As such, we welcome the extra £149 million from Government for care homes to address the additional responsibilities placed upon them in terms of testing. We hope that the money will come though as soon as possible in the new year and can dovetail with an increased roll out of a vaccine to residents and staff”. “The sector is concerned about the reliability of LFD tests. Underpinning all this is of course the need for indemnity insurance in parallel with the NHS to enable the sector to operate at optimum level in this crisis”.

Pandemic Prompts Brits to Rally Behind Local Community Covid-19 and the UK lockdown has strengthened communities, with almost half (47%) of UK adults admitting to feeling more strongly about supporting their local community now than they did at the start of the year. This is according to new research from retirement village provider, Audley Villages. As a result of this year’s crisis, people have been coming together in their local area to support one another and keep spirits up. Nearly two thirds (64%) of Brits said that community spirit in their local area improved as a result of Covid-19. While two in five (42%) are seeing this increase in community spirit lasting over the long term, 22% disagree and think that while it improved at the start of the first lockdown, it has gone again. Thinking about how their community has changed, almost a third (32%) say that somewhere in their community became a ‘hub’ during the pandemic. 8% cite this as their grocer or supermarket, while 6% say it’s been the pub, and equally, 6% say the pharmacy. While some areas thrived as the centre of the community, others have been less fortunate. Three fifths (60%) say amenities within their community have closed as a result of the pandemic. As a result, 59% admit that this has had a negative impact on the feeling of community in their local area. The North

East has been most affected by amenities closing with 70% seeing a negative impact. With an upsurge in feeling towards local communities, it’s perhaps unsurprising that recent research from Visa[1] also found that shopping locally is incredibly important to people in the UK. Over half (54%) said it’s important because they know how much their custom means, while 43% say they get a boost of happiness when they support local shopkeepers. Shopping at local businesses has also been shown to potentially double the amount of money that stays in the community. Paul Morgan, Managing Director, Operations at Audley Villages said: “It’s safe to say that the pandemic has touched all of our lives this year, so it’s encouraging to see people coming together and keeping spirits up in their local community. While so many of us have been locked down at home, it’s the people we see every day in our local area who can have the greatest effect on our day-to-day happiness and well-being. Having a strong sense of community can make a big impact on people’s lives, especially if they’re not able to see loved ones. During Christmas time, looking out for neighbours and friends will make all the difference. Let’s hope that the upsurge in community spirit is a long-lasting change, even when life does return to normal.”


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Is the COVID-19 Vaccine Roll-Out a Logistical Minefield for Care Homes? As Britain waits with bated breath to see our elderly loved ones protected, and perhaps a shift towards a more ‘normal’ return to life, what steps can care home managers take to support their colleagues during this increased time of pressure?

PREPARATION IS KEY

With care home residents at the front of the queue for receiving COVID-19 vaccines this winter, Daniel Holmberg, Head of Sales for workforce management solution Quinyx UK (www.quinyx.com), examines the demands on under pressure care workers. A letter addressed to care workers from the Government in early December outlined its plans for “getting the first vaccine [PfizerBioNTech] to care home staff from the first day that vaccinations are available”. It confirmed that “residents in a care home for older adults and their carers” are in the Group One roll-out. News around the vaccination, and the initial immunisations, have received great praise, and rightly so. Yet there are logistical challenges around first getting the treatment to care homes, let alone the safe administration of it.

Developing a plan that your whole team has fed into and agrees with, from the outset, is invaluable. This means having an accurate overview of all your operations and the scheduling of permanent, temporary, and locum staff. Quinyx carried out research in 2020, which found that a third of health and social care workers would leave their job because of inflexible rotas. So, it’s important to make sure all of your people have a voice and are comfortable with what is being asked of them. Prioritising employee wellbeing and happiness is not only the right thing to do to maintain a contented workforce, but it means employee turnover will be reduced and, it will be easier to attract new recruits. Now more than ever, it is also important that all your team members are doing what they’re trained to do – so be clear on what their skills and attributes are and how, during this transitional period, they can fulfil specific roles. This shouldn’t mean working everyone harder – just smarter. All too easily staff fall into other roles to ‘get the job done’. Understanding why this is happening and making positive steps to change it, will ensure when it comes to roll-out time there’s no ambiguity around the part they have to play. The Government has already provided care home managers with a long list of tasks they need to undertake in preparation for their staff and residents being vaccinated. Effective delegation is therefore going to be essential in juggling it all!

LET TECHNOLOGY SHOULDER SOME OF THE BURDEN

For many care homes the pandemic has already fast-tracked the introduction of digitised systems – be that e-rostering tools, instant communications and even video conferencing to connect residents with their loved ones. Technology is a force for good in the care sector – helping to cut admin time, have better visibility over staff and their skills, provide valuable insights, while allowing managers to be proactive, rather than reactive, with their forecasting. It may seem another thing to add to an already bulging to do list, but the short-term pain of implementing new systems will certainly be worth it. A Quinyx partner recalled how, at the start of the pandemic, they knew their communication had to be timely, relevant, adaptable, scalable, and accessible. They have a multi-generational, multi-ethnic staff group who used a range of platforms to get their information. Finding a communication tool that suited the entire team was a huge logistical challenge but one they needed to face head on. The implementation of this has reaped significant benefits for them.

TAKE TIME TO REFLECT Just like at the start of the pandemic, care homes will again pivot their operations to support the safe roll-out of the vaccination, so ensuring they learn lessons gathered over the last nine months to inform the next six, will help. This is a time for honest reflection – recognising where the stumbling blocks were in 2020, will mean they can be removed for 2021. Despite these unprecedented times, care workers have proven their hard work, dedication, commitment, and resilience. To help support them through this next challenge, they need honest and open communications with managers and peers, transparency relating to expectations and boundaries, and the freedom to do their jobs in a safe and nurturing environment.

Covid-19: Royal Star & Garter Chairman Major General Tim Tyler’s Vaccine Trial When volunteers were needed to take part in Covid vaccine tests, Royal Star & Garter Chairman Major General Tim Tyler stepped forward. Here, he explains his reasons for volunteering and the impact it could have. “I volunteered to participate in Covid studies some time ago because I wanted to be able to make an active contribution to bringing this dreadful disease under control. I was asked to join the Janssen vaccine trial a few weeks ago. I had given some general thought about what I would do if asked to do this, but I had to think really carefully about whether I should go through with it. "I completed a very comprehensive health questionnaire, which was then repeated in a face-to-face interview with a doctor on the day I had the injection. I was sent a lot of detailed information about the trial, including the fact that the early phases had been focussed on the safety of the trial vaccine, with good results. "I also looked at all the media reports about this trial and trials of the other vaccines, including any ‘anti vaccine’ reports. It is certainly a confusing landscape! My wife and I have had to reach decisions about whether to have our children vaccinated over many years and, with one

exception, we have had them vaccinated. That exception was during the scare about the whooping cough vaccine in about 1980 – my eldest daughter did get the disease and I remember sitting with her for long periods in cold winter nights helping her control the cough and wishing she had had the jab. "The question was an easy one really – is the risk of the vaccine greater or less than the risks to me and my family of contracting the disease? I have never had a worrying reaction to any vaccine – the worst has been a short-lived high temperature after this year’s flu vaccine. But the impact on me, despite being fit and well and in the BMI green zone, of catching Covid and on my family could be massive. So I decided to have the trial vaccination. "The injection itself was expertly administered – I felt almost nothing. And afterwards I had no adverse reaction at all. In some ways I was a bit disappointed – would a reaction have indicated that I had had the trial drug rather than the placebo? Apparently, there is about a 50:50 probability of a minor reaction whether you have received the placebo or vaccine, so I still have no idea which I had. And I look forward with interest to my booster; maybe I will have a reaction to that."

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 5

Say Hello to Martyn - The Carer's “Christmas Unsung Hero” 2020 We are delighted to announce The Carer's Unsung Hero for Christmas 2020! And the winner is… Martyn Davies, who is registered manager and owner of Urmston Manor care home in Manchester. Martyn has done a magnificent job in steering the home not only during the current pandemic, but turning the home around, which saw the home receiving a CQC ‘outstanding’ rating overall. Martyn is a registered nurse and said his is “the most rewarding job in the world.” Martyn moved to Manchester at age 16 from South Wales and first worked as a kitchen porter at Tampopo in the Trafford Centre washing dishes before starting in the kitchen of a Manchester care home and is now running his own care home! Martyn and his team go above and beyond for the 24 residents aged 62 to 97 that live at Urmston Manor, and here is a small selection of the accolades we received from Martin’s nomination. “Martyn goes above and beyond to not just ensure the physical health of my grandmother and all other residents but also their happiness.” “What Martyn does in 'normal' times is extraordinary. What he has done this year has been well above the 'call of duty' and he thoroughly deserves recognition for all he has done for the residents and their families.” “He works in this industry because he has a passion for caring and entertaining and does his utmost to make sure everyone is well looked after, including staff and residents’ families. The events they hold throughout the days, the themed nights inviting family and friends (although we've not been able to do that recently) and the building of a perspex box, near the start of the pandemic, are just some of the ways he enables and encourages residents and families to interact.” “Martyn is very approachable and easy to speak to about any concerns. He has gone out of this way to find out about mum's likes and dislikes, and tries to accommodate them. He often phones me to find out needs for my mum, and also to give updates on any developments. I guess this is the same for all families. Before Covid, there was always plenty to do for the residents - trips out to local restaurants and pubs, cinema visits and days out, which were all managed with ease. There were many activities in the home too, which mum was encouraged to do. Martyn is very hands-on so all the residents know him.” “Martyn managed to keep the coronavirus out of the home till recently, and through careful management, it did not spread throughout the home - all my mum’s tests were negative. He was one of the first people to install a vis-

iting pod so relatives could see their loved ones again. There have been very few staff changes which suggests that they are very happy working there. I get the impression he goes out of his way to look after them too.” “He is a person who goes the extra mile and is continuously overlooked for the work he does. He is dedicated to the health wellbeing and safety of his residents and staff. “ “During the current pandemic he has devised ways to keep the residents happy and engaged. He's pre-empted Govt guidelines on social distancing. His record on Covid testing for staff and residents is phenomenal. I could not wish for my father to be cared for by better staff or a better manager.” “There are not enough words to express how much I believe this Man is worthy of this award. He is so committed to his work and clearly compassionate about his staff and the wellbeing of all his residents. “ “Our father became a resident at Urmston Manor after spending many days there on Day Care and unfortunately because of the Pandamic he was taken into the Home as my Mother was struggling to care for him, as a family this was a very stressful time for us all and it was only because of Martyn’s kind ways that we all soon had peace of mind that Dad was being cared for with such love and care during these very difficult times. Martyn would call my Mum regular to make sure she was Ok and give her regular updates on Dad. So his care and thoughtfulness went also outside of the doors of the Manor.” “When I get old, I hope I find someone like Martyn to take care of me, he truly is a Gentleman with a massive heart.” “Martyn has only been my boss for a short time and after 3 weeks of working with him I contracted covid 19 and then continued to be off work for about a following 3 weeks. Martyn contacted me every day and more to check if I was ok, how I was doing, asked everytime if there was anything I needed to be collected, delivered and to ring if I needed anything whether it be a Mac Donald's or a truffle shuffle to cheer me up, I feel I have gained a true friend during my time of illness and been lucky enough to have found a great boss! Martyn is the perfect nominee x” What more could we possibly say! Other than very well-done Martyn, you are a true example of community nursing an absolute credit to this wonderful industry! I would like to thank everybody who sent in nominations for various members of staff in many different departments, we had some absolutely fantastic and heart-warming nominations and once again I only wish we could award you all! All the very best festive wishes to Martyn and his team and the very best wishes for 2021. And we would of course like to extend those wishes to you all.


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How Outsourcing HR Services Can Set A New Standard For Care By Lucy Law, senior HR manager at Hugh Jones Solicitors (www.hughjonessolicitors.co.uk) The care sector has been at the epicentre of the Covid-19 pandemic – thrust under the spotlight of the world’s media as it tackled an evergrowing list of challenges; all the while, fighting to protect society’s already most vulnerable as their health and welfare became even more compromised. Running in parallel to the clinical matters has been a whole host of new employment requirements and their related HR issues. From the sudden spike in demand for extra support workers, new policies to draft, procedures to follow and the constantly changing government guidance – the pandemic has rewritten the rulebook for HR professionals, case managers and support workers alike. It has also provided a catalyst for change, enabling a more personcentred approach to care and reinforced the importance of strong, yet professional relationships between support workers, clients and their families. Here, Lucy Law, senior HR manager at Hugh Jones Solicitors – England’s largest independent Court of Protection firm – explains how outsourced HR services can help relieve some of the pressures of Covid-19 while building a strong foundation for quality care delivery post-pandemic. “Direct employment – where the client is the employer and the HR team act on their behalf – is becoming more common and offers a progressive approach to working within the sector. However, there are no clear standards set out for directly employed staff at present, meaning employees may have no guidance or rules

to work to in terms of the care they provide. “This can be troublesome, particularly given the amount of new guidance introduced since the pandemic. Working without professional guidance can easily lead to difficulties when an employment issue arises and management can often be costly – especially when clients are faced with charges from case managers and HR specialists. Working collaboratively avoids the need to offer secondary advice and reduces the likelihood of misinterpretation. “Just as a case manager is trained to identify requirements for support in a clinical setting, we are trained to spot and address employment issues. Early detection and resolving of HR issues has a direct correlation with retention of support workers and the quality of care delivered. It allows for clear boundary setting and the effective management of relationships between all parties – client, family and care giver. This is key to a support worker’s success and by entrusting a HR specialist to handle anything employment related, it frees up both support worker and case manager to focus on the client’s clinical needs. “Direct employment also promotes consistency – something we all crave during times of unrest. While care plans are entirely bespoke for each client and their family, directly employed support workers work towards a common goal, with the same standard practice principles in place. They feel better supported, which leads to improved staff welfare, reduced absence and better retention. As well as improved care, clients also benefit from specialist input from HR and a clinical lead without additional cost. “Ensuring vulnerable clients receive the highest level of quality care in a dignified and cost effective manner is our ultimate aim. And, as we emerge from Lockdown 2.0 and enter a new year, I’d encourage every support worker to consider how their professional lives may be improved. If there are gaps in service provision, difficult relationships or unknowns around their rights as an employee, outsourced HR support could be the answer – for all involved.”

Christmas Cheer Brought to Shoreham Care Home Residents at a care home in Shoreham-by-Sea were delighted to receive a host of festive gifts as part of Dunelm’s Community Christmas Tree appeal. Elmcroft care home has been picked as one of the care homes benefitting from the retailer’s campaign, which will see gifts sent to people in care homes, schools, and refuges to make people’s Christmases a little brighter during these challenging times. The campaign, which has been introduced this year, saw Dunelm stores display a Christmas tree at the entrance with tags attached revealing gifts ideas put forward by care home residents. Customers were then able to pick a tag, purchase the item and take it to the store to be sanitised and wrapped.

As well as the presents, Dunelm has also provided a £50 gift card for the residents to use as they wish. Monica Donald, manager at the Shaw healthcare-operated care home, said: “After what has been a very difficult year, we all know Christmas will be a little different this year. Nonetheless, we are determined to make sure the residents enjoy the festive period and these extra gifts will go a long way to do that. “We would like to say a huge thank you to Dunelm and the customers for their kindness and generosity.”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 7

More Than 600,000 People Receive First Dose of Pfizer/Biontech Vaccine in UK

More than 600,000 people in the UK have received the first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine as part of the largest vaccination programme in British history. The government has today published figures which show the number of people who have received the vaccine between 8 December and 20 December in the UK is 616,933. The UK Government has procured doses on behalf of the entire UK. The number of people who have received their first dose of the vaccine in each of the four nations is: • England 521,594 • Scotland 56,676 • Wales 22,595 • Northern Ireland 16,068 In line with advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), vaccines have been administered to care home residents, those aged 80 and over and health and social care staff through over 500 vaccination sites across the UK. The vaccination programme will continue at pace over Christmas. The vaccine roll out in care homes in England began on Wednesday 16 December, with hundreds of residents vaccinated across seven care homes in Slough, Aintree, Herne Bay, Thanet, Chalfont St Peter, Droitwich and Cheltenham, as well as Chelsea Pensioners. Larger care homes with 50-70 beds will be priori-

tised at first, with around 2,900 care homes of this size in England. Over the coming weeks and months the rate of vaccination will increase as more doses become available and the programme continues to expand, with more vaccines being delivered direct to care homes. Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Thanks to a huge effort from the NHS to overcome significant logistical challenges, 616,933 people across the UK have had their jab of the coronavirus vaccine. “In just over three weeks, the NHS in every part of the UK has already set up hundreds of vaccination sites to ensure those most in need can receive their jab as quickly as possible. “This is just the beginning and we are continually expanding our vaccination programme to help everyone get back to normal in the future.” Figures on vaccination uptake for the UK will be published on a weekly basis from today on the PHE Coronavirus data dashboard. The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine was the first vaccine to be authorised for use by the medicines regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). Patients require two doses of the vaccine for the vaccine to be at its most effective. Thanks to the work of the government’s Vaccines Taskforce, 40 million doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine have been secured for the whole of the UK. Rolling reviews on the Oxford/AstraZeneca, Moderna and other vaccine candidates are underway and, if authorised by the MHRA, will mean there are more doses available to vaccinate those in need. Vaccine Deployment Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “I am extremely proud the UK is the first country in the world to roll out the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine and protect the most vulnerable from this awful disease. “The NHS across the UK is working incredibly hard to scale up the vaccination programme as fast as they can to make sure everyone on the priority list can get their vaccine easily.”

Bistro Return Marks Special Moment for Care Residents

They say it’s the little things that can have the biggest impact, and an extra special welcome for the return of Belong Warrington’s Bistro has been met with joy from residents at the care village. During its closure for the lockdown, a painted window mural featuring residents’ memories has been added to the on-site eatery. The vibrant tree design, painted by experience day support worker, Jade Shield, has been complemented with hand and leaf artworks created by older people and those with dementia who reside at the village. Speaking of this, Carol Norman, experience coordinator at Belong Warrington, said: “We’ve been working on a number of activities to encourage reminiscence, including one entitled ‘These Hands’. “The project involves discussing with residents the tasks their hands have been busy with throughout their lives and then writing up their memories for the display. There’s been some fascinating insights including where residents used to work, memories of World War II, and details of their childhoods. Bringing these together for everyone to share has made the return to the Bistro all the more special.” The village’s Bistro, usually open to the general public, as well as residents, had been temporarily closed owing to Covid-19 restrictions. As part of its

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return — initially just for residents — those at Belong Warrington are now able to enjoy their breakfast club sessions in their ‘household’ bubbles that they reside in. Carol Norman continued: “The Bistro is one the focal points for village life and so we wanted to give residents an extra reason to smile, now they are able to use it again. Residents have managed very well during the lockdowns and the Bistro return is a very welcome occasion, with an added touch of the Tree which can be also be enjoyed by loved ones for their Covid-safe visits. We look forward to welcoming the wider community back in the near future.”

For further details, please email us at care@essassist.co.uk or call 01977 705203. Register on the ESS Care TENDERTRACKER for further details www.essassist.co.uk/care/tendertracker-opportunities/

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PAGE 8 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

Registered Managers Should Not Be Blamed For Denying Visits To Relatives

By Philippa Shirtcliffe, QCS, Head of Care Quality (www.qcs.co.uk)

The results of a recent study by the University of Manchester make for hugely depressing reading, but are by no means surprising. They reveal that “10,000 more people may have died in care homes from Covid-19 than previously realised”. The academics, who conducted the research, cited a lack of PPE, poor testing regimes, and care home residents not receiving hospital treatment when they needed it – as “playing a part in the higher figures of deaths”. But statistics don't tell the whole story of what happened this spring in care homes in the UK. They say nothing about how this insidious disease seeped into homes leaving residents – both young and old - gasping for their last breaths. They say nothing about how they died in great pain without their loved ones by their side. Nor can facts and figures ever bring to light the pain, sadness and guilt of families, who through no fault of their own, were often unable to see their relatives before they died. Restrictions around visiting continued until December, 2nd, when the government published new guidance, bowed to pressure from the public, and decreed that “visiting is a central part of care home life” and “must be supported and enabled”. While the government is right to recognise that families have an inalienable right to see their loved ones, its guidance lacks clarity. Instead of publishing a set of clear protocols around visiting, it has thrown a ‘politically hot potato’ to the care sector. In doing so, it has placed a huge weight of responsibility on the shoulders of Registered Managers. The buck essentially stops with them to ensure that “proportionate steps” are taken to “manage risks”. In creating a safe environment for visiting, the government has promised to distribute lateral flow tests to every care home in the land. The problem is that there are major questions marks surrounding the accuracy of these tests. While Oxford University and PHE say that lateral flow tests are accurate enough for community use , a study by the University of Liverpool has revealed that one test picks up infections just over half of the time. The researchers found it be particularly poor in identifying low levels of infection. As a result, Sheffield City Council has instructed care home providers not to use them. In an article published on 11 December, an editorial published by the BMJ was critical of the government’s decision to champion lateral flow testing. It concluded that “whatever decision making process the UK government used, it ignored key evidence and dismissed expert international advice”. It continued, “The result is a considerable burden on care home staff, universities, NHS staff, public health

teams, and schools, with minimal additional safety compared with existing risk mitigation measures. Asymptomatic lateral flow testing is an unhelpful diversion from the important task of vaccination rollout.” Instead of holding the government to account, many tabloids have short-sightedly labelled care providers as being overly officious and lacking compassion. Nothing could be further from the truth. During this crisis, Registered Managers understand better than anybody that there is fine balance to be struck between protecting residents from the virus and making it possible to see their relatives. They are simply suspending visits because it is their duty to keep people safe. In not sharing the burden, the government has put Care Managers in an impossible predicament. Whatever action they take they are likely to face criticism. The government needs to urgently step in. It can help alleviate pressure by commissioning more testing on the accuracy of lateral flows tests. There are several different companies offering the tests and it is clear that some are more accurate than others. If the lateral flow tests are not safe to use, then the government should distribute PCR testing kits to every care home. While they are not a hundred percent accurate and take much longer to reveal a result, I believe it is not a difficult test to manage and would give care home staff, service users, and families the reassurance they need to continue visiting. Secondly, while the test and trace programme has made great strides during the autumn, it is still not as effective as it should be. With families currently only allowed to visit relatives in their tier, central and local government must work even more closely to develop and prioritise track and trace at a more local level. In Britain, this has proved much more difficult than it looks, but where it has been attempted, it has proved to be very successful in driving down local transmission. Thirdly, many care homes have embraced technology during the Pandemic to good effect. While video conferencing tools have kept service users in touch with their relatives, tracking tools, can also add great value. Take QCS’s Visitor Tracking tool, for instance. It informs visitors, based on their recent movements, whether they can or cannot visit relatives. Not only does it show who has been in and out of care home in the last 21 days, it also checks when relatives last did lateral flow tests. The information can be uploaded in seconds at the click of a button, and while – on its own – it certainly cannot be regarded as a panacea – as one of a raft of measures it can help keep the infection rate down. With infections rates likely to soar after the Christmas break, support from the government in employing these ground-breaking measures, could be the difference in visits going ahead and not. To find out more about QCS’s Visitor Tracking tool, please see link below: www.qcs.co.uk/coronavirus/qcs-covid-19-visitor-tracker/ To join QCS, contact our compliance advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email sales@qcs.co.uk. See the advert on the back page for details.

Brunelcare’s Care Home Residents Receive Covid Vaccine Over 60 residents will receive the Covid-19 vaccine at Brunelcare’s Deerhurst Care Homeon Christmas Eve.

end the year.” Care Home Manager, Lesley Hobbs, said: ” I just feel really relieved that we can now

Staff were amongst the first in the world to receive the vaccine when launched earlier this month, allowing the Bristol care home to be selected for England’s first resident vaccinations. Oona Goldsworthy, CEO, said: “ This is a milestone day for our residents and for

protect the residents further – all the families have been really supportive & pleased that we have been able to make this happen..” Oona ends “ It’s been an extremely difficult year for everyone and we are enormously grateful to our GP Dr Kerfoot & Kingswood Health Centre for coming into Deerhurst to

Brunelcare. Just two weeks after our staff received the vaccine, we can start to see some hope to

deliver the vaccine.”

UK Company Develops Anti-Viral Facemask Believed To Kill Covid-19 SCIENTISTS at Cambridge University are testing a facemask that has an anti-viral fabric coating that they believe may kill Covid-19. The reusable mask was developed by British company LiquidNano and has already been shown to kill a coronavirus that is genetically and structurally very similar to SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen that caused the pandemic. The fabric of the mask contains a unique nano-coating called DiOX 4, which has strong anti-viral properties, according to an initial study by the University of Cambridge. Further testing has now been commissioned to evaluate the efficacy of the mask directly on Covid-19. Andy Middleton of LiquidNano said: "We have created an antimicrobial face mask that is environmentally friendly and ergonomically

designed to be worn comfortably for long periods. The mask can be washed up to 20 times, which is a major positive for anybody who is concerned about the environmental impact of disposable masks." The initial study of the DiOX 4 facemask was overseen by Dr. Graham Christie, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology at the University of Cambridge. Dr Christie commented: "Our study showed that the coating on this facemask has strong anti-viral properties, which are likely to be effective against all types of coronavirus. We initially tested it on a pathogen called MHV-A59, which is genetically and structurally very similar to the causative agent of Covid-19 (SARS-CoV-2). We found that the mask killed almost 95% of the test virus within one hour." "We followed the industry standard testing for viruses on material (ISO18184:19) but made some critical adaptations to give it a more ‘realworld’ relevance. This included conducting splash tests to mimic sneezing to ensure the tests were as rigorous as possible. Therefore, there is evidence to suggest that this mask could be beneficial in helping to prevent human to human transmission of Covid-19, and we are now scheduled to conduct further tests using the SARS-Cov-2 pathogen." A number of commercial companies, including those within the hospitality and retail sectors, are currently trialling the mask with a view to rolling-out its use for employees. The study showed that 95% of viral pathogens introduced to the fabric surface were killed within one hour and almost 100% after four hours.

The study concluded: "Box fresh DiOX coated fabric is associated with strong viricidal activity with respect to the control material, with a near 95% (1.25 log) reduction in viral titre after a 1 hour contact period. The murine Coronavirus inoculum is undetectable in eluates after a 4 hour contact period, representing an 8 log reduction in titre (although there is no formal definition or standard, we would consider a 5 log reduction to be indicative of significant viricidal activity)." The study found that the mask maintained its antiviral properties after repeated washing, albeit at a reduced rate when compared to a box-fresh mask. For further information, please visit www.liquidnano.com


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 9

Care Workers Need All Our RespectFollow Scotland and Wales Lead says NCF In response to the announcement of a significant increase in staff testing in care homes to take effect immediately, supported by £149m specific funding, Vic Rayner, Executive Director at the National Care Forum (NCF) – the leading member association for not-for-profit social care providers said: “This announcement comes at a very difficult time for care homes and at the end of a long and challenging year. All staff in care homes will now need to have 2 rapid tests via lateral flow devices each week alongside the current weekly PCR testing – this is a tripling of the current staff testing regime which care homes are being asked to put into practice immediately with no notice. These additional commitments sit alongside major additional testing requirements around visiting, and the expectation that testing will be majorly ramped up during outbreaks. “The £149m extra funding from government is definitely welcome news. This is urgently needed to support the extra testing and comes after several months of intense discussion about the very practical difficulties of the exponential expansion of on-site testing in care homes and the very significant additional resource this requires. “It is an important acknowledgment by government of the very significant pressures that increasing the use of rapid LFD tests will bring to care homes who are already stretched to the limit with all the additional work that operating in a COVID-19 world has created.

“The government must now ensure that all care homes have their LFD tests in place as a matter of urgency, if care homes are to make the additional testing happen. At this moment, despite national roll out, we know that a number of care homes have yet to receive their LFD tests and this must be resolved immediately. “The data shared by government, and the knowledge from our membership about the impact of COVID-19 makes it crystal clear just how important it is that we get this right for the most vulnerable members of our community. We must not for a moment shift our attention away from those citizens that need support most – whether it is through increased testing, prioritised vaccination, access to rapid and effective health interventions or enabling meaningful visits to connect residents and loved ones. As our minds turn to Christmas and the increase in restrictions that will follow immediately and into the new year, it is vital that we do not for a moment turn our attention away from those who need us most. The funding for testing is an important step forward, but it is unlikely to be sufficient to close the gap and we will continue to need government to have those receiving care and support, and working in the sector, front and centre of their decision making as we venture into the unknowns of 2021. “The warm words of thanks from the Secretary of State for care staff who will be working their way through this Christmas were important to hear, but for the hundreds of thousands of staff who will be working whilst much of the country celebrates, albeit in tightened circumstance, they are likely to ring hollow. Care workers have always been the occupational group with the highest number of people working on Christmas Day. If ever this government was going to follow the lead of Scotland and Wales and reward all those staff for the multiple personal sacrifices they have made throughout this pandemic and will continue to do to keep everyone safe over Christmas – then this is the time to do it. Care workers need all of our respect and we need government to step up and show just how much it values their contribution.”

Spread Some Christmas Joy with Stars of Stage and Screen! Amanda Waring talks about her wonderful unique online entertainment for carehomes and staff- Christmas Joy - that includes Stars Virginia McKenna, Miriam

heart warming and feel good entertainment. For this hour long uplifting revue there is something for everyone , a virtual sleigh ride , poetry, jokes, Santa, songs, storytelling ,

Margoyles, TV stars Elizabeth Counsell and David Simeon, world champion close up

magic and all round good Cheer. Join me with stars Virginia McKenna, Mariam

magician Richard McDougall, and opera singer Charlotte Page, award winning pianist

Margoyles,Elizabeth Counsell, Nick Waring world class opera singers , magicians and

Philip Mountford with of course a visit from Santa and stars of yesteryear including Bing

pianists and Santa of course!"

Crosby, Danny Kaye, Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole. "I have been performing in carehomes since I was eight years old and throughout my life as an Actress from famous theatrical parents Dame Dorothy Tutin and TV star Derek Waring I have always brought live Christmas entertainment to care homes near me with

Karen Pirks Learning and Development West Sussex “ It’s wonderful and I have purchased for all the homes in Selsey” "My clients with Dementia didn’t stop smiling the whole way through, it truly brought Joy to our home , thank you Amanda “

my family joining me. I "t has been a joy to do this and so now especially at this time I wanted to bring online the feeling of a family Christmas with stars of stage and screen to join me in providing

To book your carehome a link to this wonderful heartwarming streamed event please email amandawaringfilms@gmail.com or visit www.theheartofcare.co.uk

H.W. PICKRELL NEW & USED ACCESSIBLE TRANSPORT AT AFFORDABLE PRICES • We specialise in the sale and purchase of quality used wheelchair accessible vehicles and ambulances. • They can be bought as seen or refurbished and sign-written to your own requirements. • 12 months M.O.T/Class 5 and 12 months warranty. • Engineers inspection supplied if required.

AMANDA WARING PRESENTS

A unique uplifting 1 hr online Virtual Christmas Revue Show especially created for care homes and staff with stars of stage and screen. VIRGINIA MCKENNA OBE NARRATES A VIRTUAL SLEIGH RIDE, alongside West End Stars, Musicians and Singers present and past to bring joy and good cheer to all.

• Free delivery service available • All buses comply with new legislation • Lease hire and purchase available • Always large stock of accessible vehicles

Tel: 01268 521034 Mobile: 07860 894341 Email: sales@hwpickrell.co.uk Gardiners Lane North, Crays Hills, Billericay, Essex CM11 2XE All current stock available to view at www.hwpickrell.co.uk

To book your carehome a link to this wonderful heartwarming streamed event please email amandawaringfilms@gmail.com or visit www.theheartofcare.co.uk (Price is £50 per carehome)


PAGE 10 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

Supporting Carers at Work: The Role of Employers Bernadette Mossman, Healthcare Director at specialist dementia care provider Vida Healthcare, discusses how social care providers can support carers through opportunities for career progression, mental health initiatives, and programmes to improve physical health, to engender loyalty and decrease turnover.

in what they’re doing. Employers can also show their gratitude through initiatives such as awards where staff members are nominated, and events such as Christmas parties. This will highlight to carers that they’re valued, and also give them a chance to destress and socialise with their colleagues.

CAREER PROGRESSION

The pandemic has led to some of the biggest challenges ever seen by the social care sector, however its crucial role in caring for our vulnerable population has been highlighted and brought to the forefront of the public’s consciousness. Recent research released earlier in the year1 found that since the start of the pandemic, almost two thirds (64%) of the public are more aware of the care industry, and 70 percent of people now value social care staff on a par with the NHS workforce.

Employers must encourage staff to consider social care as a career, rather than just a job, and drive their passion when it comes to caring for society’s most vulnerable. Investment in career opportunities will inspire more people to become interested in a role within social care, and make current carers feel supported in their ambitions. Employers should show compassion and interest in the personal development of employees to create a positive workplace culture and working environment which retains existing staff and attracts new talent. This has been particularly important during COVID-19, where increasing pressures have led to many carers feeling unable to cope and unsupported by their employer. At Vida Healthcare, we’ve always invested in progression, but have made a concerted effort to offer career opportunities during the pandemic to engender loyalty within our staff. Our most recent investment has been in the development of our training platform, Vida Academy. Launched in July 2020, the platform provides learning resources and career development tools for staff to deliver best practice and identify new skills.

MENTAL HEALTH

Photo credit: Iza Habur

This has led to more people considering a career in social care, however this can put pressure on employers when it comes to supporting carers at work.

While investment in career development and opportunities is important, employers need to consider the mental health of their carers. A mental health crisis within a care setting can lead to ineffective care delivery, high staff turnover, and a place of work which doesn’t attract new talent. Counselling services, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) can give staff the confidential and private space they need to explore their experiences, improve their mental health, and give them a voice if they feel they aren’t being heard. Connectivity with residents and their family members is also crucial. Opportunities to develop personal relationships with residents is important to engender trust and reduce stress, while connectivity with family members enables carers to showcase the crucial work they’re doing. Connections with family members is also likely to drive positive testimonials which will provide carers with a sense of achievement and purpose

PHYSICAL HEALTH Good physical health is crucial for carers to successfully carry out their role, and employers can invest in a number of initiatives to keep their workforce physically healthy. Free flu jabs should be offered to every member of staff, particularly in the run up to winter. This will not only protect staff and their family members, but also reduce the risk of cross infection between carers and the people they care for. Significant investment, particularly during the pandemic, must be made in PPE to keep both staff and residents protected and safe. This will secure greater physical health within staff, but also ensure greater positivity when it comes to attitudes towards their employer.

NEXT STEPS Previously, employers haven’t invested enough in supporting carers at work which has led to poor mental health, high staff turnover, and a sector which struggles to attract talent. If employers consider numerous initiatives this will engender trust between staff and employers, create a positive workplace, and enable carers to deliver the level of support required by the vulnerable people they care for. For more information about supporting carers at work and initiatives that can be put in place, please visit www.vidahealthcare.co.uk

Why Competency In Fire Safety Is Imperative In The Care Sector

By Claire Wright, Head of Training at the Fire Protection Association (FPA)

The severity of fires in UK care homes has been well documented over the last decade. A series of fires in London care homes in 2019 prompted the London Fire Brigade to inspect more than 150 properties, its largest ever audit of care home fire safety. Not only do fires in care homes pose a significant risk to life, especially given the vulnerability of residents, but they also threaten to destroy the homes themselves. The loss of these buildings to fire can have a severe impact on the health and wellbeing of residents. Care homes are deemed high risk premises, and, unlike other building types, the specific vulnerability level of residents dictates the approach to fire safety they should take; it is not one-size-fits-all. This also applies to the skills and competency of those responsible for fire safety – whether care home staff or individuals employed to carry out work on behalf of a care home. Here we explore how care home owners and managers should approach fire safety in order to reduce the risks from fires.

KNOWING THE RISKS – THE FOUNDATION OF FIRE SAFETY Legislation requires every employer to ensure that a suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment has been undertaken, and to have put in place general fire safety precautions to ensure the safety of employees and building users. They must identify hazards along with people at risk and implement appropriate control measures. In a care home, people at risk will include service users, staff, visitors, and contractors, but it’s not just the range of building users that impacts fire safety in care homes.

The varying dependency levels of care home residents is the primary reason that a universal approach to fire safety and risk assessment in these buildings is not applicable. For example, there is a significant risk to life posed by vulnerable residents while they sleep, creating challenges around the time taken to evacuate. Some residents may need assistance to exit the building, while others will be able to escape entirely unaided. Therefore, a suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment will look at the specific nature of the individuals and the relevant risks and recommend appropriate measures – ranging from fire suppression systems to bespoke evacuation plans. Taking a person-centred approach, in which controls/measures are implemented for all residents individually, is essential in ensuring that effective arrangements are in place, staff numbers are suitable at all times of the day and night and that all occupants can be evacuated safely in the event of an emergency. A competent fire risk assessor will identify potentially hazardous substances within the care home. This may include oxygen cylinders, ointments and fuel used in back-up generators. Ensuring the appropriate staff are aware of these risks and have the competency to handle these safely will reduce the risk of fire. Those carrying out fire risk assessments must also have highly specialised knowledge of the specific risks posed in care homes in order to ensure they are mitigated as far as possible through processes and fire protection and prevention systems. Seeking third party accreditation of contractors is the best way to ensure good practice is followed and that the building or its occupants are not put at unnecessary risk.

GETTING A THOROUGH FIRE STRATEGY IN PLACE Fire strategies are a fundamental part of a business continuity plan for protecting life and essential property, but in our experience, there isn’t always a robust strategy in place dictating an approach to fire safety. The British Standards Institution document, PAS 911, refers to a fire strategy as providing ‘a clear set of measures encompassing fire precautions, management of fire safety and fire protection.’ It involves the development and implementation of policies that address relevant risks and procedures in line with objectives specific to the business, with an aim to reduce life risk while also protecting business proce-

dures and assets. Although usually developed during the design and construction phase of a new building, this is not always the case. In such circumstances, or for older premises, fire strategies can be developed retrospectively.

PLANNING FOR EVACUATION The fire strategy and fire risk assessment will also require the development and implementation of an effective fire evacuation plan. This should consider by way of a person-centred assessment, as mentioned above, the people at risk, where they are in the building, the risks that cannot be removed or reduced any further, and the size/layout of the building. In care homes, as with the risk assessment, the vulnerability levels of residents will affect the fire strategy. The materials used in the construction of the building, alongside the method of construction will also impact the fire strategy plan and other subsequent prevention measures, as was so horrifically evidenced in the Beechmere Care Home fire in mid-2019. So again, it’s essential that a competent individual with specialised knowledge is appointed to develop it. Finally, a plan is no use at all if staff are not aware of it and are unable to implement it in the event of an emergency. Training of all staff and practice, practice, practice is essential if the risk assessment, fire strategy and the evacuation plan is going to succeed. Following the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017, the debate over competency has gained significant momentum. While the subsequent Hackitt review identified a lack of skills, knowledge and experience within the building and construction industry, its recommendations focused predominantly on high rise residential buildings. The issues surrounding competency, however, are true of building types right across the board, none more so than care homes which are responsible for some of the most vulnerable people in society. For more information, download the FPA’s free Residential Care Home Fire Safety Guide, which provides care home managers and staff with the basic steps that need to be taken to help maintain fire safety standard within a care home at www.thefpa.co.uk/news/ fire-safety-advice-and-guidance/residential-care-home-firesafety-guide


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 11

Helen Leads the Way as Community Staff are Vaccinated Community Respiratory Practitioner Helen Gremo was first to be vaccinated today (Monday, 28 December) as hundreds of frontline community NHS staff in Kent join colleagues from across the country in the nationwide vaccination programme. Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust (KCHFT), which is delivering the programme at Aylesham, is also supporting the vaccination of care home workers too and staff from other NHS trusts. Helen, a specialist respiratory practitioner who works at Whitstable and Tankerton Hospital was the first to receive her vaccine at Aylesham Health Centre (Monday, 28 December) when it opened its doors at 8am this morning to become part of the vaccination programme rollout. She said: “For me, my priority is protecting patients. Working in a respiratory team, we have a responsibility to support the vaccination programme. If I can reduce my risk, it means I am protecting my patients and supporting colleagues as I am not going to be off work.’’ Government advice is that NHS staff should be among the first to receive the vaccine and invites to staff will follow the categories set out by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), which means starting with patient-facing colleagues who are at highest risk first. This is especially important in Kent as it continues to see increasing COVID-19 infection rates and high numbers of the new variant of the virus. Community Nursing Team Leader Naomi Meakins had her first dose of the Covid vaccination on her way to work at Deal Community Clinic. The mum-of-two daughters aged four and nine, said: “We see vulnerable people all the time, so we are not only protecting ourselves, we are protecting our patients. I have got a young family and I need to be fit and well for them.’’

NHS colleagues are asked not to book a vaccination until they have received a letter inviting them to attend to be vaccinated. The Aylesham site joins those already up and running in Kent vaccinating people in priority groups recommended by the JCVI. The identified priority groups mean that anyone aged 80 and over is being vaccinated first followed by other groups, such as anyone aged 70 and over; this is to make sure those who are most vulnerable are supported as quickly as possible . Dr Meera Patel is a GP at Folkestone Urgent Treatment Centre. As a diabetic who is patient-facing every day, she was really pleased to be able to have her vaccination and support the programme. The same was true for husband Dr Sadiq Basha, who also has diabetes and who has also been seeing patients throughout the pandemic. Meanwhile, having the vaccination may enable Discharge Manager Philippa Toy to rejoin her colleagues in the discharge team at the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Hospital in Margate. Philippa has not been able to work in the hospital since March because she has a respiratory condition that makes her high-risk, so she been working at home, but is desperate to return to support her colleagues. KCHFT’s Medical Director and Faversham GP Dr Sarah Phillips said she would urge everyone to have the vaccination when it was their turn in an effort to reduce the spread of the virus and to give the best possible chance to bring an end to the pandemic. “I am so proud of the work the teams from Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust have done during the pandemic. Each and every one of them has put their life on hold in one way or another to do the very best for our patients, clients and service users. “We know our patient-facing colleagues are more at risk of contracting Covid-19 in the course of their work and it’s a special day to watch the first of our staff, alongside our colleagues in care homes, come forward to be protected against the virus. “The recent rise in cases and emergence of a new variant of the virus shows that we cannot let out guard down. As a GP, I will absolutely be having the vaccine when it is my turn and I am pleased to see so many people taking up the offer of the vaccine when invited. It’s safe, effective and offers us the best possible chance to bring an end to the pandemic.”

Home Care ‘Elves’ Spread Christmas Joy With Cupcakes and Christmas Dinner Across Bournemouth This Festive Season The team at Good Oaks Home Care in Bournemouth and Poole have been spreading joy with surprise festive deliveries. The team said they are on a seasonal mission to make everyone in their care smile – this includes sending out more than 80 cupcakes with carers going to visit clients. The team delivered Christmas dinners to those clients who are isolating this year, so they have a tasty festive treat to enjoy. And it wasn't just Christmas dinners that were delivered, thanks to Dorset Mums. The community group has teamed up with the Good Oaks team to deliver gift bags to clients. The Dorset Mums community has donated more than 1,000 gift bags across Dorset to care homes for residents with little or no family to visit, care companies, a Coronavirus Support Group, Dorset Council Adult Services, a church community cafe, Age UK and Pramacare. The Good Oaks care team will deliver them to people along with the Christmas dinners. Claire Jackson, Branch Manager at the Good Oaks Home Care HQ in Poole, said:

“We wanted to do everything we could to go above and beyond and make Christmas 2020 extra special for everyone in our care. Everyone knows it has been a tough year and we have been constantly working to ensure everyone in our care is safe, happy and contented. It’s about spreading a little extra joy at this time of year and making people smile just a bit more. Having a Christmas dinner, presents to open and someone to have a chat to on the Big Day, is something many of us take for granted but for many people, our carers might be their only contact during Christmas, so we want to do everything we can to go above and beyond and make this Christmas an extra special one.” The team has also signed up the Good Morning Britain’s One Million Minutes campaign, where people volunteer their time to support someone who might be lonely, or who doesn’t have anyone to talk to over Christmas.


PAGE 12 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

Ensure Standards are High and Protecting Those We Care For By Dr. Paul Nelson, medical doctor, clinical epidemiologist and Public Health Consultant, is the founder of

FeverFreeZone™ (https://www.feverfree.zone), and an expert in Covid-19 mitigation strategy.

Thomas Hobbes envisaged a world without society as nasty, brutish and short and Gandhi reminds us that the true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable members. During the Covid-19 pandemic the UK care home residents have suffered, and many have died. The protection of residents in care homes has been hugely problematic. Early in the pandemic the discharge back to care homes of older people contagious with C19 looks in retrospect to have been wilfully cavalier and a gross underestimation of the challenge. It led to the virus sweeping through care homes in the first wave, causing vast numbers of largely preventable deaths. That experience has perhaps led to rebound drastic and inhumane measures denying sometimes confused elderly people both touch and contact with loved ones as well as the freedom to move about in the care home for many months. This situation persists though efforts to facilitate the safe entry of relatives and loved ones into care homes are finally bearing fruit with trials of PCR testing and of new rapid testing methodologies for visiting relatives. The news of efficacious vaccines is wonderful and gives us all hope for the end of the pandemic, yet the news also threatens to become a distraction to focused efforts to protect residents of care homes whilst allowing the best quality of life for residents in the months and potentially years ahead where the virus still threatens. There is a genuine risk, that the emergence of the vaccine could be used consciously or unconsciously to divert attention and resources from C19 mitigation strategies which allow for and facilitate resident/visitor contact and some degree of freedom of movement of residents. Already Tedros Adhonan (WHO director-general) has warned that the vaccine will not be a panacea, not in the next year and perhaps

not ever as levels of immunisation may never reach herd immunity levels, mutations may occur and seasonal comebacks may become the norm. Pandemic preparedness must be in place in societies to protect them and particularly their vulnerable elderly. Now is the time to put in the infrastructure to protect care homes though layers of mitigation including screening for symptoms and critically objective assessment of signs of disease. The challenges for care homes are to balance compassion with safety, on a background of low levels of resourcing. Obvious solutions to safety like PCR testing to ensure people entering the care home do not have Covid-19 are slowly being adopted for staff but only on a weekly basis, so that interim infection and transmission remains a risk. New innovations like lateral flow testing are slowly being piloted although pan sector adoption with government backing is way off. However, for once social care is high on the news agenda taking column inches in the broadsheets and tabloids and is taking centre stage tv news reports and on social media. For once government is in the spotlight about their leadership and response and being challenged as to how they manage the next stage of the pandemic for the frail elderly particularly in care homes. The stakes are now high not to get it wrong again and moreover to ameliorate the situation. In early November The Scottish government published enhanced advice for supporting those who give and receive social care and specifically advocated daily symptom assessment and particularly temperature assessment for residents and staff in care homes. This is very good news since body temperature, although one of the primary signs of covid-19 has not been fully formally leverages as mitigation strategy in the UK. If measured correctly and consistently it can be a useful marker of infection risk and if data collected can be useful in disease surveillance and as the basis of population screening programme. Previously concerns about validity and accuracy have prevailed and the opportunities have not been seized.. Now it finally the usefulness and necessity for temperature assessment has been recognised and it is time for those who have implemented it to look at their processes and outcomes and ensure quality assurance. For those who have yet to adopt temperature assessment, process and quality are king. That said the care industry has been way in advance of government guidelines on symptom assessment, realising that a precautionary

approach early on a background of confusing, contradictory and deficient official advice. That information has imporved and care home owners have had taken then initiative adding mitigations above and beyond publicly recommended measure. Many have added in temperature assessment of staff, visitors and patients where Public Health guidelines have lagged behind the situation on the ground. In care homes, Temperature assessment has become widespread although often in an ad-hoc way without proper processes procedures and audit. In this light there is some doubt about the value of the temperature assessment process, assessment accuracy and validity without data being kept or used in the audit, it is easy to think that temperature assessment is largely theatre. It is important, and perhaps now likely that in view of the formal official public health advice from the Scottish government to care homes to implement daily symptom and temperature assessment that, standard procedures and equipment and the collection of data will become the norm. This will drive a focus by care homes on the accuracy and trust in the assessment as meaningful and helpful. This is good news as it adds another meaningful layer to broader mitigations against Covid 19 and is welcome and easy to implement even while the effectiveness of novel tests are still in doubt and while we endure the long wait for the vaccine. Objective temperature assessment now has its official sanction, let us get it in place and ensure that it is done so meaningfully and is not just theatre. That is it must be done according to a standard operation procedure using accredited equipment that is fit for purpose and there should be staff training and accreditation and a process of quality assurance. This is not only desirable but also essential Even if and when full eradication is here those care homes that have adopted best practice will be best placed to protect residents from early viral respiratory illness. Other infections such as flu have always threatened our elders in care homes and the Covid-19 pandemic has shone a bright light on our deficiencies in precautionary screening measures to protect them. Now is the time to get the infrastructure in place to protect the most vulnerable in our society for the next stage of this pandemic and be prepared for the next.

Care Provider Welcomes 35 New Staff to its 10 Year Club Specialist healthcare provider, Ludlow Street Healthcare, has celebrated the end of a tough year by welcoming 35 team members into its 10 Year Club which honours all its long-serving team members. Ludlow Street Healthcare specialises in providing care for adults over the age of 18 with complex mental health problems, autism, learning disabilities, and neuropsychiatric conditions including dementia and acquired brain injuries. Of its 1,100 staff, 145 have been with the company for over a decade, including 35 new additions to the 10 Year Club who are a mixture of clinical and support staff spread across the company’s services. The organisation, which would usually toast the newest Club members at a celebratory dinner with all its other 10 Year staff, instead presented certificates and congratulatory bonuses to staff in their individual services. Long-serving support worker at Heatherwood Court Hospital Alun Withers who reached his 10 year milestone with Ludlow Street Healthcare said: “It’s been a very quick 10 years but the most enjoyable and testing 10 years of my 35 years in mental health, [with] great colleagues who go on and above their normal duties. Here’s

to the next 10 years.” Jairo Bejarano, who started with Ludlow Street Healthcare as a support worker but has risen through the ranks to become manager of one the organisation’s community homes, said: “I’ve been working 15 years for Ludlow. I’m so grateful for the wonderful time, experience and memories I have collected in all those years.” Recognising that its dedicated, multidisciplinary teams are the key to the success of its service users, the organisation continually invests in training for all its staff members and regularly reviews pay to ensure that staff receive some of the best pay rates in the sector. Jane Watkins, Founder and Deputy Chair of Ludlow Street Healthcare, said: “This year has been unlike any we have experienced as an organisation but our staff have continued to go above and beyond, even in the most testing of times. “This latest group of staff to join the 10 Year Club has given us all a real boost and is a very positive way to end 2020. We look forward to next year’s 10 Year Club bash where we can safely celebrate the dedication of our brilliant team.”

Chief Medical Officer’s Annual Report Outlines Health Challenges in England The Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty, has released his first independent annual report ‘Health trends and variation in England’ today. In the report, Professor Whitty highlights that improvements in life expectancy have stalled in recent years, a trend which has also been seen in many major developed countries. He also highlights that illhealth and disease is concentrated in areas of deprivation, or where there is a higher proportion of older citizens, and that more action is needed to tackle these longstanding inequalities in health. The report consists of a collection of data, charts and statistics that present a broad overview of the nation’s health and wider diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease, with the aim of supporting policymakers to prioritise areas for action and monitor progress. The report highlights both short and long-term trends in health, and the factors that influence variation in

health outcomes across the nation. Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty said: “Although COVID-19 has dominated the news, and remains an urgent priority, other diseases and health problems such as cancer and cardiovascular disease continue to take a major toll. “I have brought together the latest data for health in England because they highlight major issues to tackle, identify where in the country they are heavily concentrated and trends in health over time. “There is wide variation in ill health across the country, and much of this is avoidable. It is possible to raise the health outcomes of the least healthy closer to the outcomes of the healthiest – we should be aiming for that.” While the Chief Medical Officer states it is important to acknowledge the extraordinary impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health of the nation, the NHS and on wider society in 2020, this report focusses on wider long-term health challenges in England. The Chief Medical Officer’s annual reports have been a tradition stretching back over 150 years, providing an independent assessment of the state of the public’s health in England.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 13

NHS Confederation Welcomes 'Certainty and Security' of Brexit Trade Deal but Warns of Disruption Risk Responding to the announcement of the Brexit trade agreement, Danny Mortimer, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “On behalf of our members, who have faced the toughest year in the history of the health service, the NHS Confederation welcomes the trade deal that has provisionally been agreed between the UK and the EU. It should offer a measure of much-needed certainty and security for the NHS, our partners and our patients. It also lays the foundations for future agreements. “We need to see the final details when the full text is released, but initial reports suggest there are welcome measures, including the continuation of the European Health Insurance Card and the UK’s continued participation in Horizon Europe. We now look forward to seeing the detail of the agreement as it applies to health and care, and await the parliamentary vote on 30 December, when we can hopefully final-

ly draw a line under the machinations of the last four years and move forward. “The best outcome for the NHS and the UK was always to reach a deal, and that should obviate the need for an extension to the transition period. The UK has avoided a non-negotiated outcome and a cliff edge on 1 January. But as we warned in our 23 December letter to the Prime Minister, there is still a risk of significant disruption to the NHS’s ability to care for its patients, and especially in the South East, where our members have consistently warned that ambulances and clinicians could face delays because of major congestion on the roads in Kent. Alongside this, across the UK yesterday, new COVID-19 infections were at a record high, with some of the highest levels in Kent, exacerbated by the new variant."

HRH The Prince of Wales Congratulates Walton Residents at Whiteley Village on Their Pandemic Resilience and Community Spirit His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales,Patron of The Whiteley Homes Trust, has sent a Christmas video message of support to Whiteley Village congratulating villagers and staff on their “resilience” and “indomitable spirit” during the pandemic which he said had, “shone through even on the darkest days”. With so many Christmas events cancelled due to Covid, the Trust produced a video which was sent to villagers, staff and volunteers today to reflect back on 2020 and to remind everyone about all the amazing things achieved, despite the challenges. The Trust was therefore delighted when His Royal Highness agreed to submit a message of support for inclusion in the video. In the video, The Prince said the Village had met the challenges of the pandemic with great “resolve” and that villagers and staff, “…should all feel truly proud of what you have achieved together”. He expressed “particular gratitude” to care and nursing staff for their “inspirational commitment”, and to “all those working behind the scenes” delivering other services. “The special hot meal and grocery service established during lockdown was a really marvellous example of staff and volunteers working together to support the most vulnerable in the Village”, he said. The closure of so many of the Trust’s public facing services, such as its café and wedding and conference facilities, has hit the charity’s

such as face visors hand made by local students, schools and colleges, the hundreds of meals provided for villagers and the video call devices which helped reconnect residents to family and friends”. During the pandemic Villagers have also done huge amounts to support each other and those outside the Village, and His Royal Highness commented on how they sewed face masks for Whiteley staff and the NHS as well as, “sharing gardening and dog walking and formed telephone teams to support those who are housebound or shielding”. The Prince concluded by congratulating residents and staff for meeting the challenges of the pandemic with “great spirit and resolve” and wished them “…a particularly happy and healthy Christmas and a safer and more encouraging new year”. Rachel Hill, CEO of The Whiteley Homes Trust said: “We’re so grateincome hard while the costs of ensuring adequate PPE to protect residents and staff from the virus have spiralled. The Trust launched its Never Alone appeal to raise funds and recruit volunteers and was overwhelmed by the response from the community but also from villagers and their families. Continuing his message, His Royal Highness said it was “…incredibly heartening to hear of the donations of crucial protective equipment,

ful to His Royal Highness for his support. I know his message will mean the world to our residents and staff after such a difficult year. “I couldn’t be more proud of Whiteley and how everyone has pulled together this year – residents, staff and volunteers, to help keep our services going and protect the Village. With just a handful of Covid-19 cases amongst our almost 450 older residents to date, it really has been an incredible achievement. The Whiteley spirit in action!”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 15

Care Home Residents Record Magical Christmas Bedtime Story to Thank Children Across the Nation “To all the children that lifted our spirits over lockdown – this is for you” With the help of Hallmark Care Homes and The Together Project, a group of residents from care homes around the country have recorded a special Christmas Eve bedtime story, to thank children across the nation for their support during 2020. Residents of ten Hallmark Care Homes donned their best festive attire to film the magical ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’, for families to watch together on 24th December. The film comes as a thank you to all the young people that have brought moments of joy to care home residents this year, through The Together Project’s Hand in Hand Together handprint exchange. Sue Mitchell, Lifestyles Lead at Hallmark Care Home – Anya Court said: “The residents all had a wonderful time making the video. It gave everyone a real chance to get dressed up and show their appreciation for all the lovely things that the children have done for the residents”.

The Together Project’s Hand in Hand Together campaign partners up children with older adults living in care homes, to have fun creating handprint-themed pictures and writing stories about themselves and

then swapping them in the post. The campaign is designed to: • Address the isolation and sadness that so many of us have been experiencing • Provide a fun, creative way for children and parents to link up with older generations • Celebrate the simple, restorative power of human connection The campaign will continue throughout the winter into 2021, with the charity inviting more parents and care homes to sign up. Parents/guardians and care homes can sign up here: https://www.thetogetherproject.co.uk/hand-in-hand-together Louise Goulden, CEO and Founder of The Together Project added: “Hand in Hand Together is creating moments of joy for children, parents and older people this winter. We aim to spread cheer, reduce loneliness and create multi-age friendships across the nation and we urge parents, families and care homes to get involved.” The video can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/HPj8frpmR50

Durham Care Home Gift Christmas Hampers To Veterans In Local Community HC-One homes across the north of England have organised a hamper initiative, that saw representatives from the homes hand out hampers in the local community, to combat loneliness, isolation and bring a smile to people’s faces this Christmas. Residents and Staff at the St Margarets care home in Durham wanted to ensure that Military Veterans were not forgotten during this festive period. The home reached out to Andrew Camiss at the East Durham Veterans Trust to help identify individuals who needed something positive to brighten up their Christmas. St Margarets care home surprised Michael Richardson, Chris Dinning, John Burgess, Ken & Joan Wardle and Derek Bland on the 16th December with the delivery of some wonderful Christmas hampers. They were overjoyed with the gifts which helped them feel remembered and appreciated during the festive season. Chris Dinning who previously served in the RAF said: “That’s so kind, I really appreciate it. It’s made me smile after a very difficult year in which I lost my son.” Derek Bland, who previously served in the Royal Artillery said: “This is such a wonderful surprise after a terrible year, I lost my wife this year on our 68th wedding anniversary.”

Joan whose husband is a 90 year old Army Veteran said: “Thank you to all the Residents for our lovely present and Merry Christmas”. Michael who is currently suffering from Cancer said: “That’s so kind and a wonderful surprise, thank you.” John found it difficult to talk gave a huge smile and thumbs up. St. Margaret’s Home Manager, Katherine Swainston said: “We wanted to thank our Veterans for their service and share some Christmas kindness. The Residents and staff are delighted that those who have received the hampers will be keeping in touch via our pen pal scheme and hopefully get to meet in person in the future. We also want to thank everyone who has shown our Residents and staff kindness throughout the year”. Area Director, Lynn Maddison said “We are extremely thankful to our Veterans for their service and those in our community for the love and support that they have shown us through these unprecedented and challenging times. To be able to offer a token of our appreciation was only fitting and we hope that the hampers we delivered, bring the same feelings of joy and warmth that they have given us through 2020!”


PAGE 16 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

Care Home Thanks Local Community for its Generosity and Christmas Spirit A CARE home in Glasgow has thanked its surrounding community for their generosity and kindness this year, after school pupils and locals sent in a raft of personalised handmade cards and presents to residents. Residents at Belses Gardens, which is managed and operated by Blackwood, have been treated to a packed month of festive activities, which culminated in a Christmas party where residents enjoyed food, gifts, and a visit from Santa at an outdoor gazebo. The care home in Glasgow would normally host a local primary school for an afternoon carol service, but with Covid-19 restrictions this couldn’t go ahead. Instead, the community banded together to show their support for the care home through gifts from Hillington and Cardonald Primary schools and local people. Liz Peebles, Care Services Manager at Blackwood, said: “The past few months have driven home how important our community links are, and how valuable these

Surprise Christmas Llama Visit Brings Festive Joy And Laughter To Grimsby Care Home This year, all the reindeer are self-isolating ready for Christmas, so instead Residents at HCOne’s Clarendon Hall care home in Grimsby had a visit from the Christmas Llamas. The two llamas arrived wearing their finest Christmas jumpers and slowly made their way around the outside of the building and peered through the windows at the expectant Residents. Stephanie, the home administrator, joked with a new Resident, who had only joined the day before the Llamas visited, saying: “Well I bet you weren’t expecting to see a Llama when you arrived did you?” The Llamas were greeted by waves and laughter as the Residents sat at various windows awaiting their arrival. Residents who were unable to visit the windows still enjoyed the fun as Colleagues

had set up a video call so Residents could join in on the fun from the comfort of their own rooms. Clarendon Hall Home Manager, Nicola joked, “We don’t need a gardener now as they’re eating the bushes for us and keeping them trimmed.”

community and intergenerational relationships are to our customers and staff. “We’ve had a fantastic reaction from the gifts and homemade cards from the children at Hillington and Cardonald Primary schools and our customers loved the Christmas party – this month has given us all a much needed boost. “We’ve received donations of hampers with selection boxes and homemade tablets, our staff created Advent Calendars for customers, and we were also gifted some lovely handknitted Santa hats and Christmas puddings with chocolates in them. “After a challenging year for many and our usual festive celebrations not able to go ahead, we feel extremely lucky to have had such a warm response from the community and we’d like to thank everyone for their support, generosity and kindness over the year.”

Add High Quality Art to Your Care Home with Global When considering the refurbishment of your care home, it may be a wise move to look at some pieces of quality art to give a feeling of class and prestige to your business image. Homes can benefit aesthetically and financially from investing in quality original art.  GLOBAL ART Acquisitions and Investments Ltd are based above the Antiques centre at the Bridge House Longham BH22 9AN. We have an extensive selection of unique art available for the discerning client with prestigious premises and customers.  GLOBAL ART is also the home of the world’s number 1 reformed art forger BILLY MUMFORD’S col-

lection. Billy put £6 Million pounds worth of forgeries through the major auction houses of the world before spending 2 years at her Majesty’s pleasure in Brixton and Ford prisons. Art is now the number 1 financial asset and retains it’s value better than other asset classes so that you can appreciate your art as your art appreciates.  Take time to come over and visit us Thursday to Sunday 10 till 4 and see what a fantastic selection of works we can offer, you won’t be disappointed or Telephone James Hartey on 07894555107 or visit www.globalartinternational.co.uk

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 19

830,000 PPE Items Donated To West Midlands Care Workers

More than 830,000 items of PPE are being donated to the region’s care and voluntary organisations on behalf of West Midlands Mayor Andy Street. A subsidiary of IM group is making the donation, with the Solihull-based company saying it wants to ‘boost the supply for many people working in local voluntary, health, and social care roles in organisations across the region’. The donation has been made via the Mayor’s Office, with the Mayor asking Birmingham Voluntary Service Council (BVSC) and University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust (UHB) for help in ensuring the 830,000 masks reach those that need them most. West Midlands Mayor Andy Street said: “This is an incredible donation and I cannot thank IM and their team enough. “Throughout the pandemic businesses across the West Midlands have done what they can to support the region’s efforts to tackle the spread of Covid-19, and this is yet another phenomenal example of that. “With the NHS relatively well-stocked, I have asked BVSC and UHB to help us identify the community workers and organisations most in need of this PPE.” Masks have started to be delivered across the region from a warehouse in West Bromwich, where the haul is currently being stored. The Mayor visited the warehouse earlier this month alongside IM Group’s managing director Andrew Edmiston. Mr Edmiston said: “The West Midlands has been one of the worst hit

areas, and we want to help ensure that vital PPE continues to be available for those working so hard to protect us on the frontline in the wider community. “We hope that this donation of 830,000 items of PPE from one of IM Group’s subsidiary companies, will help to make a real difference and boost the supply for many people working in local voluntary, health and social care roles in organisations across the region. “We decided to make our donation via the Mayor’s office because we are so aware how active Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, has been in supporting local charities and businesses, and we want to support them in their efforts as much as we can.” Brian Carr, the chief executive officer of BVSC, added: “On behalf of Birmingham’s community and voluntary sector, we are extremely grateful for this fantastically generous donation. “The masks are already being put to good use – 4,000 are going to a local care home; 10,000 to organisations supporting people with disabilities; 20,000 to our local food distribution partners; and the remainder are being distributed to our city and regional networks of local community support charities. “Although we can all see some light at the end of the tunnel, we’re also very aware that the Covid crisis isn’t yet over and protecting vulnerable people and frontline care and support workers is of paramount importance. Kind donations like this one help us to do exactly that.”

Heanor Park Care Home - Winner of Client of * the Year at the Lux Awards 2020

some degree, by our internal body clock - the timing, intensity and colour of light are key factors in regulating our sleep and wake patterns. Disturbances in the circadian rhythm can have a physiological and mental impact, and often causes poor sleep patterns. Many factors can influence our circadian rhythms, such as exercise/movement and food intake. However, by combining them with new interactions with our non-image forming light receptors, we can achieve excellent results in the care home setting where residents tend to struggle to spend time outdoor where they can be exposed to the benefits of natural light. The Circadian Plus solution includes bespoke lightSome of the main benefits of circadian lighting ing design, smart lighting software and spectrumare: controlled lights – creating a truly revolutionary • Improved sleep solution that has resident health and wellbeing at the • Improved mood forefront. • Less risk of developing certain mental and physical The impact of the lighting at Heanor Park has sighealth conditions nificantly reduced resident falls, increased engage• Reduction in errors and accidents ment, and has improved sleep-wake cycles. Check • Faster cognitive processing out our case study video to understand more at • Increased alertness at the right times of day www.circadianplus.com/heanor-park-case-study • Can aid with the rehabilitation of certain medical The term Circadian Lighting is defined as lighting conditions e.g. brain injuries that replicates natural light (as closely as possible) to • Can be beneficial for elderly residents and people support human circadian rhythms, otherwise known with Alzheimer’s disease as our internal body clock. We are all governed, to To understand more about the importance of care

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home lighting visit www.circadianplus.com/news/care-home-lighting ‘We’re seeing a greater level of engagement from the residents during the day because the lighting is helping their body clock become alert and ready for the day…we’re not seeing people falling asleep in their chair or not wanting to engage in activities’.

- David Poxton, Managing Director of Heanor Park Care Home * The Lux Awards are designed to celebrate and reward both creativity and sustainability, recognising clients and end-users that have used lighting in exceptional ways to improve their lit environment, reduce energy and achieve business objectives.


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PAGE 24 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

CATERING FOR CARE

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 www.CaterCloudCare.com

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 elearning covering the fundamentals of dysphagia management using Nutilis Clear. The training is divided into 4 sections and has been specially designed for busy health and social care staff caring for people living with dysphagia. It takes 60 minutes in total to complete, however you can complete one section at a time.

How can this training help you? • Easy & convenient online solution to dysphagia training • Visibility to track progress in your care home • Raise the quality standard of dysphagia care in a consistent way 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 resourcecentre@nutricia.com. Nutilis Clear is a Food for Special Medical Purposes for the dietary management of dysphagia and must be used under medical supervision. Reference: 1. O’Loughlin G, Shanley C. Swallowing problems in the nursing home: a novel training response. Dysphagia 1998; 13, 172-183.( https://www.rcslt.org/speech-and-languagetherapy/clinical-information/dysphagia)


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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 www.yeomanshield.com 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: www.appreciate.co.uk/tax-free-gifts-foremployees/ or email Alex Speed, Head of Business Development, at Appreciate Group alex.speed@appreciategroup.co.uk.

CareZips Dignity Trousers ™

CareZips™ preserve dignity and privacy of people receiving care during diaper changes. CareZips™ make diaper changes easier and faster, reducing workload, saving efforts, and saving time! CareZips™ help to deliver better standards of care! Fitted with unique 3-zip fastening system, the CareZips™ make changing of incontinence diapers more dignified and comfortable for the patients and easier and faster for the carers. CareZips™ feature 3 strategically positioned zips, 2 of which run from the waist to the knees on both sides of the body. The 3rd zip goes from the inside of one knee up to the crotch and down to the second knee on the inside of the other leg. This zip facilitates total opening of the trousers at the crotch during diaper changes. The 3-zip system ensures fast and easy access to the abdomen and crotch without having to undress the patients or pull their trousers down.

CareZips™ are suitable for men and women. They are available in 7 sizes for perfect fit. CareZips™ are soft and wrinkle resistant with stretch and give for extra comfort. Practical, durable, washable and non-iron, the CareZips™ trousers are the perfect choice for daily use. Contact Win Health Medical Ltd - 01835 864866 www.win-health.com or see the advert on page 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 www.euroservice-uk.com sales@euroservice-uk.com

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 853431 or visit us at www.cands-seating.co.uk to request or download a brochure, pricelist or order form, request an individualised quotation, speak to an advisor or to place an order. See the advert on page 10.

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. www.marsdenweighing.co.uk or email sales@marsdengroup.co.uk

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 www.adaptawear.com 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: sales@skopos.co.uk. www.skoposfabrics.com


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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: https://jla.com/otex 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 www.forbespro.co.uk, call 0345 070 2345 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

www.laundrytec.com

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 www..laundrytec.com

info@laundrytec.com

5 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD CHOOSE LAUNDRYTEC 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Washer Extractors

Tumble Dryers

Cost Quality Service Design Innovation

Flatwork Ironers

Other Equipment


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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Portibac - Making The Places You Live and Work Safe PORTiBAC is the answer to the quick and effective sanitisation for care homes. Choose the PORTiBAC system that fits your needs. All come with our unique sanitising solution produced in the UK. PORTiBAC 800ML SPRAY GUN The entry level member of the PORTiBAC family has a simple mission - to sanitise the spaces you care about within minutes making the environment safe for staff and residents. Powered by a rechargeable battery and with its easy custom carry case, the PORTiBAC 800ML SPRAY GUN is ready to go anywhere.

What could be more satisfying than taking aim with this handy spray gun at the places you need to make safe? Filled with exclusive PORTiBAC Tropical Citrus solution - certified to kill Covid-19 on surfaces – the fine mist produced by the gun gets the job done in minutes. The PORTiBAC 800ML SPRAY GUN is available in, Metallic gold, Brushed silver & Brilliant white. Comes complete with 800ml of PORTiBAC Tropical Citrus solution all for just £125 PORTiBAC - the essential tool in the fight against the spread of Covid19 15% discount to all care homes, please see www.Portibac.com or call 03430 442 442

Staysafe Visor - CE-Certified PPE Manufactured in the UK

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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 www.staysafevisor.co.uk


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 31

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. sales@greyland.co.uk W. www.greyland.co.uk

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 www.vortice.ltd.uk

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 33

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL MAG Launches Ozone Generator Proven To Kill Covid–19

Are your rooms 100% free of germs and smells? Clean, fresh air has never been more important and ozone is being used in care homes across the UK as a new safety standard for infection control.  The MAG Ozone Generator emits ozone through the air to sanitise surfaces and kill bacteria and viruses including Covid–19. 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 destroying microorganisms. With cycle times as quick as 15 minutes the MAG Ozone Generator is the quick & easy way to sanitise any indoor environment including care homes,

pods, rooms, offices, toilets, canteens, storage areas and more. Ozone is also extremely effective at removing unwanted smells from rooms. Rather than masking unpleasant odours with air fresheners and chemicals you can permanently remove smells with the MAG Ozone Generator. Available for less than £5.00 per day MAG Ozone Generators can be purchased outright or paid for monthly via lease or rental. Separate to ozone generators MAG Equipment Ltd also supply and service all leading brands of commercial washing machines, tumble dryers and ironers should you require any assistance. To find our more visit www.maglaundryequipment.co.uk or telephone 01422 244734. 

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 www.cromwellpolythene.co.uk

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MAG OZONE GENERATOR Emits ozone through the air sanitising surfaces and killing bacteria, microorganisms and viruses including COVID-19 while eliminating unpleasant odours

GET IN TOUCH FOR YOUR FREE DEMO OR TRIAL

01451 604708

APPROVED PRODUCT


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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 https://youtu.be/lcQllOytA7Y For further information, see the advert this page, call 01257 477060 or visit www.ctuservices.com

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

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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 www.haighmed.com


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 35

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL 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) technolo-

gy, a gaseous form of Ozone that fills the room, reaching every corner of the space, santising surfaces and critical hard-to-reach corners homogenously, consistently and safely. The SANOZONE range of sanitisation machines are all equipped with the latest technology and customised disinfection programmes to suit your specific requirements. The running costs are considerably lower than any traditional disinfecting programmes and most importantly, there is no manual labour involved. For further information about the SANOZONE range, please contact Barbel on 01629 705110, email info@barbel.net, or visit the website at www.barbel.net

OneSpray - Reduces the Spread of Harmful Bacteria and Viruses Throughout the course of the 2020 pandemic, the Care Home sector has undoubtedly endured a challenging period. With an increased risk to staff and residents, there has been a lack of fundamental government support at all levels, leaving owners and managers with increased challenges. Infection control is naturally a top priority for Care Homes but never before has the risk been so acute. With a lack of direction and support from government, the onus is left to the individual homes to determine the best course of action. An obvious change has been to implement either significantly increased or continual cleaning procedures. However, as Channel 4’s Dispatches showed on 26 October 2020, whilst this can be effective if carried out perfectly, the results can be highly inconsistent in reality, as that policy is susceptible to human error. It also comes at a cost, in terms of both product and labour. Dispatches looked at continual cleaning procedures undertaken in Tesco, Costa Coffee, hotels and public transport, using ATP testing in a number of sample areas to determine the presence

of organic material. The results were very mixed with an unsettlingly high number of samples showing very high counts of bacteria, despite supposedly being clean. The conclusion was that whilst the process can work, it leaves open the risk of human error, whether that be missing an area or it simply not being feasible to continually clean every surface. OneSpray offer a solution to help mitigate that risk, with innovative antimicrobial technology that is proven extensively to protect surfaces for up to 30 days from application. Groups of Care Homes are already using their solutions, alongside major transport networks, airlines and airports amongst others business worldwide, across multiple sectors. Containing no alcohol or harmful chemicals, and proven against EN14476 and EN1500, the unique longevity of the products will help protect staff and residents alike. For more information, contact info@onespray.com or 03400 577 148. Alternatively, you can visit their website at www.onespray.com See the advert on page 43.

Elgin Bay Offer The Mac500 Proven Solution to Combating Coronavirus 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 companies and individuals in the fight against the spread of coronavirus. We have not

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 matthewcove@elginbay.co.uk The report can be requested by contacting matthewcove@elginbay.co.uk or downloaded here: https://jimco.dk/CustomerData/Files/Folders/5ppdf/24 07_ms2-test.pdf


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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 (www.purozo.co.uk) 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.

THE PROBLEM WITH CHEMICALS

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?

THE SOLUTION

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 www.purozo.co.uk or contact us on 01594 546250 | Info@purozo.co.uk

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 www.angloplas.co.uk 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. www.axaironline.co.uk sales@axair-fans.co.uk 01782 349439


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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL

Antimicrobial Handle Helps Boost Care Homes’ Active Protection Methods Against Bacteria Care homes can now help to reduce the spread of bacteria using a maintenance-free, 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.” 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 Andy.Matthews@hoppe.com or 01902 484 400. www.hoppe.com

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, info@sunglobalsupplies.com or www.sunglobalavf.com


TECHNOLOGY DESIGNED FOR FOR CONSTANT CONST A PRO PROTECTION INNOVATIVE INNO VATIVE TECHNOLOGY NST TANT TECTION

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PAGE 40 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

TECHNOLOGY & SOFTWARE

Why eLearning Is Part of the ‘New Normal’ The rapid turnover of staff in the care sector is an established and unfortunate fact. A state of play that care providers are forced to contend with constantly. Not only is this the cause of countless lost hours, but it also takes a hefty financial toll too. Skills for Care have estimated the cost to recruit, train and induct new carers at £3,642 per care worker. With a significant portion coming directly from training costs. Prior to COVID-19, forward thinking care providers were already starting to use eLearning instead of or as a compliment to face to face training. The current situation has compelled care providers eLearning the most sensible way to go for most if not all care providers.

founded eLFY. Thirteen years later and eLFY is now used in over 5,000 registered care locations care across the UK and is the leading eLearning system for social care in the UK. What people love is the interactive learning, the ease of use and access anywhere, the comprehensive course library and of course, the much fairer pricing model. In the intervening years, the eLFY team have worked with experts in care sector training, regulations, and compliance and in eLearning design. develop a truly unbeatable learning library. Here are just some of the course categories on offer: • Mandatory courses (including infection prevention and control) • Care Certificate • Managerial courses • Clinical courses

WHAT’S eLEARNING FOR YOU AND WHY IS IT DIFFERENT? While most eLearning platforms charge by the individual, eLearning for You, or eLFY for short, charges by the course or for an allocation of transferable user licenses. Crucially, this means that when a new carer replaces an outgoing one, they simply take on the leaving carer’s learning license, so you don’t need to pay again. That’s because we understand how the care sector works at the levels of senior management and the day-to-day, on the ground. eLFY’s founder, Rob Cousins, has operated his own care homes for over 17 years. Relatively soon after entering the care sector Rob saw the need for a more affordable, flexible and efficient way to train staff. In 2007 he

• Non-clinical courses • Ancillary courses • Advanced care courses

NEW HORIZONS A more recent addition is eCompetency. Designed by social care experts, eCompetency uses gamification to create a virtual and interactive environment. Learners are presented with real-world scenarios to properly assess their decision making and competency. eLFY’s rapid growth and reputation among care providers led them to be acquired by the Access Group earlier this year. eLFY is now delivered through Access Workspace, the unique single sign-on system that brings all your care software together in the same place. This joining together of forces will make it easier for Access’ 8,000+ care locations to take advantage of eLFY, particularly at a time when distanced learning seems like the only sensible option. Meanwhile care providers using eLFY are seeing exactly what else Access can do for them, whether it is electronic care plans, scheduling, medicine management, compliance, recruitment, screening, or something else, Access should have what you need. What eLFY users say: “We have been using eLearning For You for several years now and it’s helped to change the way we manage our training and develop our staff teams.” – Frank Walsh, Workforce Development Manager, Potens “Very easy online platform to use, especially on mobile. The content of the course was well presented and comprehensive.” – Iona Cioaca, Registered Manager, Runwood Homes Find out more about eLFY or book a demo at www.theaccessgroup.com/hsc or call 01202 725080 (Option 4).

Turn To Tech To Relieve Pressure and Improve Experience By Stephanie Vaughan-Jones, Moneypenny (www.moneypenny.com) matter how busy staff get. Callers will always get through to someone friendly and professional, who understands and represents a care home’s individual brand.

of hours. Technology has the power to help overcome this mounting pressure and leave carers to focus on what’s really important – looking after those in need. Here, Stephanie Vaughan-Jones, Head of Healthcare Sector at Moneypenny – the leading outsourced communications provider – explains how.

PUT YOUR WEBSITE TO WORK

ALWAYS BE AVAILABLE

The care sector has faced enormous pressures this year – all under the spotlight of the world’s media. The outbreak of Covid-19 has rewritten the rules and for care homes, it’s been a battle to protect residents and staff, while continuing to provide quality care and communicate clearly with concerned families. The pandemic has had an impact on communications habits, too. During times of unrest, people naturally want to reach out for support so the phone has become a lifeline for many seeking updates on loved ones that they’re unable to visit. Living in a 24/7 society, there’s round the clock demand and care staff are forced to juggle external communications with delivering care which can be extremely overwhelming – particularly out

Being accessible for residents’ families is a crucial part of running a care home – it’s what helps to make people connected with their loved one’s care givers. The telephone is the primary means of communication and has been critical during the pandemic with call volumes increasing significantly. It’s not just about maintaining a family connection, there’s an important commercial benefit to being readily available. Covid-19 means there’s an increased demand for care services and the phone is a major channel for new enquiries. If you’re accessible, friendly and professionally over the phone, it gives an indicator as to the values you have as a care home – you can not only put families at ease but also fill vacant beds quickly. Society has adapted to digital communication but there’s no replacement for human interaction. The introduction of alternative methods has simply rendered ‘real life’ conversation even more valuable. A phone call offers assurance and familiarity that you only get from speaking with a human being – particularly during times of need. That’s why being able to answer and handle calls quickly and efficiently is essential – it’s unacceptable to let the phone ring out or leave callers on hold for extended amounts of time. If this happens, messages aren’t relayed or calls missed – it starts to impact reputation and this can be hard to come back from. By outsourcing telephone answering – either on an overflow basis or entirely – care homes can rest assured that they’ll never miss a call – no

Another way of streamlining customer experience is through the inclusion of live chat on a website. Consumers carry out lots of research online and there’s a growing expectation that they can communicate with your brand this way. The instant nature of live chat is what has made it so popular. Web visitors appreciate the opportunity to ask quick questions, right there and then, whilst browsing online. Others simply prefer not to talk on the phone and favour the messenger-style experience live chat offers. People expect a wide variety of channels through which they can communicate – live chat is still a relatively untapped area for care homes but it can be a valuable part of this solution. It provides an instant and easy way to get in touch and triages enquiries to keep volume away from the phones. Live chat technology generates six times more website engagement and encourages visitors who wouldn’t otherwise take the time to email or call, to engage with you. The solution also stores important details securely, allowing for a more informed and seamless follow-up. The reality is that we’ll be feeling the impact of the pandemic for months to come, so increased pressure on phones and other channels will remain. If standards are slipping, care homes can address these issues easily by looking to outsourced tech. Telephone answering support allows care providers to focus on the clinical aspect of their role and live chat is proven to improve digital presence and keep call volumes down. In difficult times, communicating well with the outside world offers an opportunity to stand out. It goes hand in hand with customer care and gives people confidence in the efficiency and quality of the service you provide.

The Future of Health and Social Care in a Post-Pandemic World By Steve Morgan, Partnership Director, Agilisys (www.agilisys.co.uk) Covid-19 has turned the daily rhythms and routines of everybody upside down, not least of which those within the nursing and residential care home sector. Health and social care, weakened by years of chronic underfunding and rising demand, was already staring into an abyss. Whilst the newly announced vaccine provides hope, there is still plenty that the sector needs to do to assure its future. What does the future look like for health and social care? How will the ways care is delivered change in 2021 and beyond? And, crucially, what impact will this have on patients?

THE CONTINUED DISPLACEMENT OF TECHNOLOGY By deploying technology across people's homes and linking it with the digitised front door, a large proportion of attended care at home can be displaced, making large savings and improving the quality of service delivered. For example, sensors like oximeters or door contact sensors that trigger an exception when dementia sufferers open doors at unexpected times, can reduce the number of home visits dramatically.

CREATING A CARE BUBBLE Vulnerable people are alone now more than ever, and health care teams are struggling to keep up with the demand. Technology can help to create and connect support teams whether that be family members, third sector organisations or charitable groups. Technology can account for a patient’s routine, medication and needs. Plus, it can enable a community of volunteers, family members, friends and neighbours to help with day-to-day care. Therefore, creating a support bubble around at-risk individuals. This bubble could consist of 10,000 volunteers or organisations that bring different skills to the table, in addition to any formal care that would still be required.

SAFETY IN NUMBERS There needs to be additional targeted investment post-pandemic to finally integrate health and social care throughout the UK. It is a case of safety in numbers. However, there are still significant technology and data challenges to bringing residential and domiciliary care into the 21st century. And there remains basic technology issues that need urgent attention. As recently as last year, only 75% of residential care homes had an Internet connection.

CHANGING THE ROLE OF CONTACT CENTRES The wider changes to working habits will impact the delivery of social care. Due to contact centre headcounts being reduced as home working takes over, the focus will be on technology to virtually bring people together. If an issue needs to be raised that's associated with one part of provisioning or social care, workers need to be able to do so automatically and immediately. Traditional contact centres who operate an ‘inbound’ contact model must now change to a proactive ‘outbound’ contact model; making video calls, verifying current situations and using the proactive support bubble to ensure closer integration with primary care.

TAKING A HOLISTIC VIEW We are already seeing increased interest in chatbots to manage inbound demand and expect this to accelerate further, supported by more complex Artificial Intelligence and Robotic Process Automation led solutions. It is likely that there is a large amount of pent-up demand for care – people have battened down the hatches and held off making requests but as the world returns to normal, they will do so. Therefore, the opportunities to signpost and manage that demand by automation may be required. What has been missing when looking at social care in the past is for somebody to sit back and take the holistic view; looking at how existing technologies come together to deliver the outcomes that we need. Get the technology angle right and you can deliver integrated care. The pressures on the sector are severe – and have been seriously exacerbated by the pandemic – however the vaccine and the re-emergence of technology solution provides hope.


PAGE 42 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

TECHNOLOGY & SOFTWARE CARE VISION Friends of the Elderly Selects Softworks Software

At Care Vision we believe care may never be the same again. Outstanding care truly is at the heart of everything we do, with a clear purpose of Less Admin, More Care. Growing up and working in a family owned care home, Rishi Jawaheer saw at first hand the main needs in the care sector; to cut down on the burden of manual paperwork while maintaining good practice and to encourage people to become more involved in care. Using his experience as a registered manager, with some of the smartest minds in tech, Rishi was driven to create Care Vision, an all in one cloudbased care management, system incorporating all your care and admin into one easy to use system. Presently the care industry has our work cut out to keep in line with statutory and legislative compliance in addition to the essential everyday tasks of looking after our clients. Care Vision acts as a bridge which uses technology that organises care work, ensures a safer, better and more intimate experience for every member of the community, from administration, the carer to family, friends and the people we care for. Care Vision provides An easy to use system for carers, managers, relatives; bringing care and admin into one platform; to manage time, attendance, rota, HR, housekeeping, maintenance and much more An E-mar system, fully compliant with NICE, reducing medication errors and keeping people safe An intuative daily notes section that can be completed at the point of service quickly and accurately A pictorial food order system that allows the individual to choose from a menu even if they forgot what a meal looks like Daily reminders in the form of care routines which reminds staff of key aspects of care for the individual

Care Plans / Risk assessments/ Life stories which allows you to customise care plans to specifically suit the person’s needs. Reminding all about one’s history and who Is important in one’s life A family app that allows families to keep track of their loved one’s wellbeing through videos and pictures, which has been essential during the pandemic. Care Vision gives you the freedom to access it using mobile, tablet, laptop, or pc in real time whilst safely securing and storing data. within the platform. Built flexibly to adapt to services of any size, large or small, Care Vision’s structured, interactive features engage carers in sharing information with the end-user and their family. Registered manager and director of Summerhayes Care says “The carers have taken to Care Vision like a duck to water and the information that we are gathering is streets ahead of the previous system we used we are very impressed. They make it easy to understand and nothing is any trouble. I highly recommend taking a look at this system if you are wanting to meet your quality standards and CQC requirements”.

Nationally our data has shown that working with homes Care Vision can save 2-4 hours every week per carer by reducing tasks that could be better spent with the people we care for. As both carers and developers, we are unique in our focus on developing software that benefits the care sector. This allows us to continually develop and update software for our clients. The Care Vision team would love to talk to you about what the system can do for you, come and join us, we believe the future of Social care is in good hands with “Care vision” Contact us at info@care-vision.co.uk or call 0208 768 9809

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

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 services have live,

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.” “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.” See the advert on the facing page for details,

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-tostrength 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 www.carecontrolsystems.co.uk 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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 45

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 www.wfsoftware.co.uk

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 https://alpaka.io/case-studies/care Call Alpaka on 0203 286 6109 or email


PAGE 46 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

NURSE CALL AND FALL PREVENTION

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

Call button Pager Floor sensor mat Wireless door/window exit alerts

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.

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.

Benefits include:

Features 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:

TREADNOUGHT ®FLOOR SENSOR PAD

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

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 specifically to each individual customers require-

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

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, 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.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 47

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 www.nursecallsystems.co.uk 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 lctuk.com 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 www.easylinkuk.co.uk or see the advert on page 45 for details.

www.nursecallsystems.co.uk


PAGE 48 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

NURSE CALL AND FALL PREVENTION

NURSE CALL

IT’S NOT OBSOLETE UNTIL THE OPERA LADY SINGS

EDISON TELECOM LTD (IN BUSINESS SINCE 1984)

have spares, enhancements and expertise for wired and wireless systems abandoned by the original manufacturer, whoever they are.

Call us on 01252-340220 We can give most systems a new lease of life and maintain them into the future.

www.edisontelecom.co.uk 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:

NO LOOSE WIRES

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-

WIRELESS CALL BUTTONS

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.

PLUGS

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.

LOOK AND FEEL

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

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.” www.edisontelecom.co.uk


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 49

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: https://essassist.co.uk/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: email.essassist.co.uk For further details, please email us at care@essassist.co.uk 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: www.dementiaworkshop.co.uk 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 www.highspeedtraining.co.uk/ 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 info@lasersys.co.uk or +44 (0)1753 584 112.   See the advert on this page for further details.


PAGE 50 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Buying A Care Home – Issues To Look Out For By Derek Ching, partner in the commercial property team at Boyes Turner (www.boyesturner.com) The care home market is expected to be buoyant in 2021. If you are considering buying a care home, there are various issues you should consider. Derek Ching partner in the commercial property team at Boyes Turner explains more. Anyone who is considering buying a care home needs to undertake thorough due diligence. This is always time well spent and will minimise the chance of potentially expensive surprises happening later on in the purchase process, or even after the deal has completed.

OVERHEADS An obvious starting point is for a potential buyer to look at the overheads of a care business. In doing this, it is important to look ahead and think about the impact that rising compliance standards may have. Staff overheads also need to be factored in, including increases in the minimum wage and other employment overheads. Will these increases be matched by an increase in income?

STAFFING Take time to consider staffing generally, including the impact of TUPE – the rules governing the transfer of staff – on the acquisition of a care business. Other questions to ask are if the business will be affected by changes to the immigration rules post-Brexit.

Consider the impact loss of key staff could have on the business. This will require contingency planning to ensure that key people don’t leave the business on day 1. Losing key staff could affect continuing Care Quality Commission registration and may also have a major impact on operational effectiveness. A key manager may hold the keys – both literally and metaphorically – to understanding how the business operates. A great way to understand a care business before buying it is by speaking to the manager, who may not be the owner. This may be delicate commercially, but without that opportunity, your understanding of the business may be impaired.

PROPERTY AND PLANNING ISSUES Another item on your due diligence list should be to review the adequacy of any planning consents and issues over securing planning for any building improvements or extensions that you may be thinking of carrying out. A review should be undertaken into the scope of the property title to ensure that no adverse third party rights or covenants exist, and that title restrictions do not impede any plans you may have for improvements. If the care home is held under a lease, it is important to thoroughly understand the controls imposed by the lease covenants on the operator of the business. This should include permitted use, controls on alterations, dealing with assignments, transfer of licences and the scope of repairing obligations. Where landlord’s consent to assignment is needed, does the entity acquiring the lease have the financial strength to satisfy their requirements? Ensure all necessary insurances can be put in place when required.

FINANCE If you are relying on bank or other external investment be aware that the lenders’ legal requirements will be uncompromising and allow no

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 enquiries@globalbusinessfinance.net

NORTH STAFFORDSHIRE

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.

Further details available

01782 713444 / 01785 850866 www.hinsonparry.co.uk

room to sort things out afterwards. This makes it imperative that sellers are required to supply every piece of supporting documentation needed by the lender, even if you don’t consider them of immediate concern. Approval in principle for funding is never unconditional. The problems and delays in the purchase process usually come in satisfying lenders pre-conditions. Demands for personal guarantees or secondary security often add to the timescale before funds can be released as well as add to the expenses of the transaction overall.

LOOK OUT FOR UNDERINVESTMENT When looking around the premises, look for signs of underinvestment or cost cutting, which may mean expensive catch-up investment later. This could include lack of maintenance and decoration, poor record keeping, inadequate support and training for staff, poor management, reduction in purchasing of supplies. Other issues to look out for are excessive dividends or repayment of director loans at the expense of reinvestment into the business. A detailed survey of condition is crucial. The survey should encompass asbestos, DDA compliance, electrical and gas safety and energy performance. Many deficiencies can be swept under the carpet and only get picked up later when major spending becomes necessary.

PLAN FOR AHEAD FOR CQC REGISTRATION Take time to understand any areas of improvement identified or outright non-compliances identified by CQC inspection reports and the implications for a new owner. This could be a sign of wider issues. Plan ahead for the CQC registration process to run smoothly. There are a lot of issues to consider before buying a care home but taking time to do this thoroughly at the start of the process will save you time and money later on.

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 www.hinsonparry.co.uk


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 36 | PAGE 51

INSURANCE FOR CARE The Changing Risk Landscape for Care Providers and its Impact on Insurance It is common knowledge that the coronavirus pandemic has brought huge challenges to the UK care sector. The increased demand for care across all sectors and the change to the way in which it is delivered means operators have had to become more flexible and responsive. This has only been possible by the hard work and dedication of those working within the industry. Significant change have been experienced across all sectors of the care industry, but it’s only the elderly care sector that has seen a change in the insurance landscape as a direct result of COVID-19. There have been increases in the premiums required by insurers for many insurance packages as potential risk increases and appetite for the sector diminishes. We have taken a look at the challenges facing providers of elderly care in the UK and why these increased risks have had such an effect on the insurance market.

THE SITUATION We know that at the beginning of the outbreak back in March, many companies operating care facilities were not included in vital government plans to provide suitable PPE, financial support and workforce planning. Many UK care homes in the elderly care sector struggled to control outbreaks within their facilities as COVID began to sweep across the country. By the very nature of the working conditions and relationships between patients, families and staff, it was easy for the virus to spread causing worry. PPE was a cause for concern; locating the right type and in the right quantities left many care providers without the right protection. Staffing has been challenging with vulnerable team members shielding, and isolating colleagues leaving a temporary gap in staff levels following a holiday or from exposure either inside or outside of the care home. But the biggest ongoing challenge facing elderly care home operators was and remains regular testing and speedy results. Testing is vital to stop the spread of infection and is the best weapon to keep it under control, until the approved vaccine programme is well underway. As restrictions change across the country on a regular basis, care providers have had to adapt and implement new ways of working. This constant change adds additional stress to the workforce and brings increased

potential for something to go wrong. All of the issues above will have been closely monitored by the insurer market as they weigh up the exposure to risk for care providers.

INCREASED POTENTIAL RISKS – A CONCERN FOR INSURERS Care facility proprietors will always put the care and wellbeing of their patients and residents at the heart of everything they do; reputations are built on the exceptional care that is delivered. We should remember that care home settings have always been open to potential risk. Claims can arise for a myriad of reasons, from a claim of medical malpractice to a claim under Employment Liability for an employee fall or injury, but COVID-19 has brought its own set of risks which have increased the potential for insurance claims.

adviser who specialises in insurance for the care sector has spoken to a number of A rated insurers to understand why there is a decreased appetite for the elderly care sector. Matthew said: “Whilst insurers haven’t actually seen an increase in claims so far, the apprehension appears to be around the potential for claims under Employment Liability cover for COVID-19. There is concern about the possible emergence of companies that may offer a ‘no win no fee’ for anyone who has contracted Covid whilst working in a care home, creating a claim culture. Should this scenario arise it could lead to significant reserves having to be put aside for potential claims. It sounds unlikely but this is exactly what happened with PPI only a few years ago. The reasons for claims are certainly very different but we could see the claim culture it invoked replicated for this pandemic.” Claims may arise from employees, residents or the families of either, if something should go wrong. This could be as the result of inadequate PPE or robust procedures to stop the spread of infection within a facility. The potential for claims is high, but without adequate cover in place care homes will be unable to operate. Matthew continued: “We are an independent broker and look across the insurer market to find the optimum insurance programme for our clients. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to place business, which is a problem for everyone. A number of insurers have pulled out of the elderly care market completely and those remaining have increased their premiums to accommodate for an anticipated rise in claims.”

INSURANCE ADVICE FOR PROVIDERS OF ELDERLY CARE

Insurers have been watching the unfolding care sector situation closely as they decide on their response and how or rather if, they have an appetite for cover moving forward. Matthew Dale, from Barnes Commercial, an expert

Thankfully there are still some insurers who will provide insurance for the care sector and at affordable premiums. Packages are available for care homes in any setting, including elderly care, with a turnover of up to £5M and can be purchased via reputable brokers. Barnes Commercial offer a Business Essentials package which has been specifically created for the care home sector, and includes cover for management liability (Director’s and Officer’s insurance) which is quite hard to come by these days. Care homes can expect to see broader insurance packages returning as the pandemic abates and the approved vaccines are rolled out. Advice to care homes owners during these extraor-

dinary times to mitigate risk, is to ensure that you keep up to date with government and CQC guidelines. Create safeguarding practices, write them up and share with all members of your team so everyone knows the procedures to follow and how to manage a crisis effectively. If following an inspection any issues are raised, ensure an action is put in place and any remedial actions are taken immediately. Review and improve cleaning regimes to ensure they are robust and comply with government guidelines. Consider hiring the services of companies with specialist air purifying machines to help with air circulation and ventilation. Try to avoid using agency staff if possible because the change can be unsettling for elderly residents and there is more potential for the virus to be brought into your workplace. If you do use a care agency, make sure you carry out due diligence and check they have employment liability and medical malpractice insurance for their staff. If you employ new staff, ensure they are fully trained and put procedures in place to facilitate ongoing training for all employees. Make sure you carry out thorough background checks for new team members, or suppliers. In summary, it’s all about general good management and an ability to manage risk effectively. Take the time to look at all areas of your business and identify where you are open to risk, putting measure in place to allow business continuity should the unexpected occur. Barnes Commercial Insurance Broker is a specialist independent broker offering guidance and advice on managing risk within the care sector. For more information please visit their website at www.barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk

Specialist care home insurance We arrange tailored insurance programmes for care and nursing homes, hospices and domiciliary care providers, for both staff and business owners. Our extensive knowledge of the care market will help to ensure you have the right protection in place for now and, for the future. Secure robust cover that’s right for your business.

CALL NOW FOR A QUOTE

Impartial advice from experienced advisers

Exceptional service from a dedicated account executive

Let us help you to protect your business with a no obligation risk review today!

Market-leading products from A rated insurers

Give us a call: Send us an email: Visit our website: Follow us:

Support with claims

Guidance on risk management solutions including H&S and HR

01480 272727 enquiries@barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk www.barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk/care /barnes-commercial

Barnes Commercial Insurance Broker is a trading style of Barnes Commercial Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, FRN: 844370. Registered address: 3 Fenice Court, Phoenix Park, Eaton Socon, St Neots, Cambs, PE19 8EW. Registered in England and Wales. Registered number: 11909011.


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

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Profile for The Carer

The Carer Digital - Issue #36  

The Carer Digital is delivered to our readers online every week.  This new online edition is available online for the duration of the COVID...

The Carer Digital - Issue #36  

The Carer Digital is delivered to our readers online every week.  This new online edition is available online for the duration of the COVID...

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