The Carer Digital - Issue #57

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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 57

Covid Vaccination to be Made “Compulsory” for England's Care Home Staff

The government is to make coronavirus vaccinations compulsory for care home staff who work with elderly and vulnerable people and may also be extended to staff working in the NHS at a later date, according to reports today (June 16). The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) is expected to press ahead with making Covid vaccination a condition of social care staff deployment when it publishes the response to its ‘no jab, no job’ consultation later this week. The move would mean compulsory vaccination for most of the 1.5 million people currently working in social care in England, despite fears having been previously raised that it could lead to staff leaving the profession, which has in recent years struggled to fill vacancies.

According to reports, care staff will have 16 weeks to get vaccinated or risk losing their job, however, the measure would not include to staff who can provide evidence of a medical exemption from Covid-19 vaccination. The full plans are expected to be officially announced by ministers in the coming days. International Trade Secretary Liz Truss said the government's announcement of its decision on mandatory vaccination for care home staff was "very imminent". Speaking to the BBC yesterday (June 15) she said: "We need to make sure we get the balance right but I'm sure people appreciate that protecting lives is the absolute priority."

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EDITOR'S VIEWPOINT Welcome to the latest edition of The Carer Digital!

Editor

Peter Adams

In my lifetime I have seen issues which have divided the public and, in many areas, divided families to such an extent that they have not spoken since (Miners Strike) and of course recently Brexit. I think mandatory vaccines will usurp those and will become the most contentious debate in modern times. I really do believe that is how serious it is. I have said many times before the government has repeatedly found itself between a rock and a hard place with respect to Covid and the care sector. However, the libertarian in me believes compulsory vaccinations under duress and threat of losing one’s job is that step too far. And to be announced in the way that it has is a terri-

ble PR exercise! I understand that currently 10% of NHS staff and 16% of social care staff have not had the vaccine, with take up particularly low among BAME communities and in some areas as many as 33% working in the care sector have not taken up the vaccine, and up to 20% working in the NHS. I also note the Royal College of Nursing previously warned it has “serious concerns around mandating vaccines.” They went on to say that they did not believe support staff should be made or coerced into having the vaccine stating they “do not believe that this approach is effective in improving uptake of vaccination in staff”. I also note the term “redeployment” for those who will not be vaccinated. I suspect that those who have suggested redeploying staff who do not take the vaccine will have absolutely no experience of working in social care. Presumably,and I am open to correction, it would mean taking staff out of frontline care and putting them into administrative jobs in the background. What hard pressed operator could afford to do that? How many times staff be by to be vaccinated? At the time of writing I understand that vaccine manufacturers presently do not know for certain how long protection from their vaccines last - studies into this are ongoing. Pfizer, for example, is scrutinizing clinical trial participants for up to two years to study long-term immunity, with preliminary studies showing that antibodies do decrease in people who have had the Pfizer vaccine over a six-month period. Although the company does state that the vaccine continues to be effective against the virus through these six months. So, will this mean booster jabs or additional vaccines further on down the line?

Also imagine the disruption to a sector that has over 100,000 vacancies every single day. What impact will compulsory vaccination have on people already working in the sector and, for whatever reason are reluctant to have the vaccination, and the impact on recruitment, people looking to enter the sector who again for whatever reason have chosen not to have the vaccination yet? All the observers that have submitted comments to us today rightly say that the way forward is to encourage staff and not to force them. That is the most sensible option! I suspect this policy is doomed to hinder recruitment into the sector and threaten the ongoing delivery of future care. Furthermore the policy could very well prove to be a legal nightmare for operators, leading to a swathe of complaints from disgruntled and concerned staff, as well as legal and employment challenges in tribunal’s, drawing staff and employers into unnecessary conflict. I do very much hope that the full Consultation Report, whenever that will be, will answer the many issues today’s announcement has raised. Don’t forget our latest “Unsung Hero Award”!!!! A small token on our part to reward somebody who has gone that extra mile in in the residential and nursing care sector. While mainstream media sometimes it would seem “relishes” the opportunity to dwell on negative news surrounding care homes, we have always done the opposite! And it is an absolute travesty that these feelgood stories and initiatives never seem to make mainstream news. The nominations are coming in we are absolutely thrilled to say! So, once again a luxury hamper will be delivered directly to a “UNSUNG HERO” at their care home, nominations are open until July 9 so please get nominating with a small paragraph of what your nominee has done and why you think they are worthy of recognition nominate@thecareruk.com Once again we have called on some of the industry’s “leading lights” for insight, advice guidance and best practice, and are always delighted to print the many “uplifting stories” we receive from care homes and staff around the country so please do keep them coming! I can always be contacted at editor@thecareruk.com

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 3

Covid Vaccination to be Made “Compulsory” for England's Care Home Staff (...CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: "Vaccines are our way out of this pandemic and have already saved thousands of lives - with millions of health and care staff vaccinated. "Our priority is to make sure people in care homes are protected and we launched the consultation to get views on whether and how the government might take forward a new requirement for adult care home providers, looking after older people, to only deploy staff who have had a COVID-19 vaccination or have an appropriate exemption. "The consultation has ended and we will publish our response in due course." Fears it may discourage recruitment Care providers expressed dismay over the reports, the Independent Care Group (ICG) said it feared the policy might discourage people from taking up jobs in social care at a time when there are upwards of 120,000 vacancies. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “I can understand why the Government has taken this decision as it is vital that we get as many people protected against Covid-19 as possible. The vaccine is very important and playing a crucial role in the pandemic. “However, I do not like the idea of forcing people to do something against their will and would prefer it to remain a matter of personal choice rather than be compulsory. “I think the Government hasn’t gone far enough in its efforts to persuade people of the value of the vaccine and is using the blunt instrument of legislation. “This will without doubt create another barrier to recruitment at a time when social care providers are facing an employment crisis and struggling to fill one shift at a time. “What about those already employed? Are employers going to have to force them to have the injection and dismiss them if they don’t? That can’t be right and will surely open the door for legal challenge. “There has been discussion about redeploying those who won’t have the vaccine, but again that isn’t always an option, particularly for smaller operators. This whole thing seems to demonstrate once again a lack of understanding of the social care sector. “We trust it will extend to all healthcare workers, including those taking up NHS posts. And will it become compulsory to have a flu jab in future, as for some people the flu can be a fatal illness?” Danny Mortimer, chief executive of NHS Employers (part of the NHS Confederation) said: “This is a complex issue and health employers are committed to supporting their staff to feel confident to get vaccinated and help protect themselves as well as their patients and colleagues. These efforts are paying off with the majority of NHS staff now fully vaccinated. “Any announcement to make the vaccination mandatory for social care workers will also impact on NHS staff, especially those who provide health care in social care settings. Our members will continue to place an emphasis on education and communication with their staff,

something which remains crucially important even where the government insists on mandatory vaccination. We will also work closely with our trade union colleagues to address the concerns of their members and to ensure that the implementation of any decision is handled sensitively going forward.”

‘ENCOURAGEMENT, NOT COMPULSION’ Unite union representing health and social care staff have stated that encouragement are not compulsion when it comes to vaccination against Covid-19 is the best approach, Unite the union said today (Wednesday 16 June). Commenting on today’s reports, he union which has 100,000 members in the health service, voiced its opposition to the proposals. Unite assistant general secretary Gail Cartmail said today: “Unite strongly opposes forcing any health and social care workers to have a vaccine or risk sacrificing their job. “Encouragement, not compulsion is the advice of the World Health Organisation (WHO) for the very good reason that such an approach is shown to work. “A checklist of reasons behind the shocking level of infection in care homes points to a stack of government failures. It is invidious that social care staff should be singled out in this fashion – it smacks of the government trying to divert attention from its massive failure at the beginning of the pandemic to protect elderly residents from coronavirus. “The social care sector is in urgent need of ‘root and branch’ reform – there needs to be a national care service with the same status as the NHS where staff are paid fairly. NHS and social care workers need and deserve respect from our government, a decent pay rise and a drastic reduction in vacancies that are placing an immense strain on the system. “Boris Johnson pledged on day that he became prime minister in July 2019 that he had a plan ‘to fix’ the decades-old social care crisis – two years on we are still waiting for this blueprint.” Unite has already submitted its response to the Department of Health and Social Care consultation on making vaccination a condition of deployment in older adult care homes. In the submission, the union said: “Unite believes all Covid-19 vaccination and Covid-19 testing regimes in the UK should be voluntary and not mandatory. Compulsion is a very bad way to achieve a high level response, will lead to increased resistance, a worsening staffing crisis and is embroiled with issues such as equalities, human rights, privacy, and ethical breaches. “Social care workers are some of the most exploited and vulnerable in the economy, with many working on precarious contracts such as through agencies or zero hours arrangements that mean many have no access to basic workplace health protects such as sick pay or sufficient PPE.” Matthew Wort, partner at Anthony Collins Solicitors, said: "The Government hasn't announced anything official about mandatory vaccination, but the reports are that staff working in care homes will be given

16 weeks to be vaccinated or face being redeployed away from frontline care or losing their jobs. "If this is true, the chances of care homes having roles away from front-line care to move their staff into is extremely limited so this is likely to mean all care home workers who refuse vaccination being dismissed. "This could have a significant impact on the continuity of care in some areas where vaccine take-up has been low. "Mandatory vaccination has split opinions between care home providers and will be welcomed by some providers. This policy is, in my view, a reflection on how the government views social care as a second-class citizen to health. "The consultation results on mandatory vaccination are yet to be published and I haven't seen any compelling evidence that proves mandatory vaccination is necessary in care homes but not necessary in health care settings or in domiciliary care or supported living settings. "We don't know yet whether the policy would include exemptions for those who cannot be vaccinated for health or belief-related reasons. Providers we work with who have introduced mandatory vaccination for new staff have been careful to make allowances for anyone who cannot be vaccinated because of a particular protected characteristic. "Without a compelling evidence base, I consider mandatory vaccination for all care home staff could be subject to legal challenge and I would expect a judicial review to be mounted by unions supporting workers in the sector. "Ultimately, if the Government mandate vaccination, care home providers are likely to be able to fairly dismiss staff who refuse the vaccine but at what cost to the sector? Skilled and dedicated care workers with genuinely held fears about vaccination may be lost to the sector, fuelling a new crisis with a shortage of sufficiently skilled and experienced staff to deliver safe care, increasing agency use, spiraling costs and increasing infection risk. "My view is that mandatory vaccination of care home staff now is the wrong move at the wrong time. It will be welcomed by some in the sector because of the perceived certainty it will bring, but if the policy subsequently falls down on human rights grounds it will be social care providers left carrying the cost. "In the meantime, providers should not change their approach to mandatory vaccination for existing staff ahead of a formal Government announcement." There are providers, however, who support the government stance, John Godden MBE, CEO of Salutem Healthcare, is calling for the government to make COVID-19 vaccines compulsory for all care staff, not just those working in settings for elderly residents. John said: “At Salutem, we adopted a policy of compulsory vaccination for our frontline staff with effect from April 30th. This move received near total support from colleagues and those we care for. Above all, in this sector, we have a duty of care to those we support and ensuring our colleagues are fully vaccinated against this pernicious disease is essential in keeping our residents safe. “The government’s proposals today do not go nearly far enough. Vaccines must be mandatory in all care settings, not just those providing care to the elderly. Adults and children with complex medical needs may be at even greater risk from coronavirus because they may not yet have met the vaccination criteria themselves.”


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How to Eliminate Closed Cultures

By Barry Price of QCS (www.qcs.co.uk)

On the same day that the CQC published a new strategy, which at its very heart aims to tackle inequality and promote diversity and human rights, the Winterbourne View scandal made the news again. A decade after the BBC Panorama exposé, which uncovered a culture of systematic and systemic abuse, the BBC reported that the families of those who has been abused had written to the Prime Minister demanding change. Their views are shared by Mencap and the Challenging Behaviour Foundation, who say that over 2,000 people with autism and learning disabilities still reside in assessment and treatment units. That the two announcements came on the same day was particularly ironic. Why? Well, one of the key themes of the CQC’s new strategy places a much greater emphasis on providers developing a strong safety culture within their services. Indeed, the overriding message from the CQC is for providers to embed a deep cultural fabric within their services that eliminates toxic environments that often lead to closed cultures. Closed cultures: What are they? So, what is a closed culture? I’m sure that I don't have to tell you, but the definition is vague and ambiguous. It lacks detail and nuance. The CQC defines it as a “poor culture that can lead to harm, including human rights breaches such as abuse”. A far greater challenge for providers and inspectors is to be able to identify close cultures. So, perhaps a better question to ask is, ‘what do closed cultures look like in practice as many care professionals may never have experienced one? Having worked as a specialist in a number of different areas including Adults with Learning Disabilities and Complex Needs for many years, there is very little that I haven’t seen. But closed cultures are different.

The minority of Managers that choose to embrace these closed environments, which sometimes operate in tiny pockets of a service, don't want you to see them. They are masters of concealment and that’s why even the most experienced inspectors sometimes fail to spot these extremely damaging cultures until it’s too late. Closed cultures: How to recognise them. Being tutored by a director, who taught me the value of acting on instinct, has alerted me to tell-tale signs when a closed culture might be present. In my previous roles I have assessed service users in settings where a closed culture has been identified and can attest to the fact that gut reaction certainly plays its part. Services with closed cultures often put down roots when directors never come into the building, let alone spend time in areas frequented by service users. They sometimes establish themselves in services with set rotas, where teams are never mixed, which allows closed cliques to form. Another red flag lies in the language that staff use. It tends to be unprofessional vocabulary that cheapens the notion of person-centred care and ultimately robs service users of their dignity. For example, they might use the word ‘softs’ when referring to service users who need to eat blended foods. They might term those living with dementia and certain Mental Health Conditions as ‘walkers.’ Or, they might use the phrase ‘double-up’ when a person requires support from two care workers. In a service where providers, directors, managers and senior staff don’t interact with staff teams and service users, they don’t see and hear this behaviour and so they cannot address it. But how do providers respond to and eliminate closed cultures? In its new strategy the CQC has proposed a raft of ways to do so. Firstly, it is calling on providers to instil a safe culture. That means promoting a culture of openness, transparency and accountability. In short, it must be a culture which is instilled from the top, is built on the ‘Mum Test’, and one which allows front line staff to learn from their mistakes without living in fear for their jobs. Content providers have an important role to play too Most importantly, however, while leaders need to inculcate the culture, it must be a culture of shared responsibility. In other words, staff must be given the policies, the procedures, the best practice learning and the technology to feel that they can make difference. In this respect, QCS, the leading provider of content, guidance and standards for the social care sector, can add great value. By ensuring that staff

have the right tools at the right time, it reinforces a culture of shared responsibility and helps to keep closed cultures at bay. That is not to lessen the importance of carrying out targeted programme of inspections, however. Curiously the CQC’s new strategy is proposing the opposite. It wants fewer inspections to take place while placing a greater emphasis on gathering a wealth of information from a wider network of local services that co-produce with providers. While we must give the CQC some credit for this very innovative approach, I’m not sure that I agree with its decision to cut down on inspections. If the CQC is really serious about ridding the care sector of close cultures, it actually need to carry out more targeted inspections. It’s not enough to even conduct several inspections on different days. Inspectors need to have the confidence to inspect when they feel it necessary to do so. Peer-to peer reviews a panacea While co-production already plays a significant role in other areas of the new strategy, working more closely with Registered Managers from other services should be actively encouraged. I regularly hear positive stories from front line managers actively collaborating with their counterparts at nearby services. Many have gone on to form friendship and mentorship programmes, which enable peer-to-peer review to take place. Having different managers and care professionals mock-auditing different services is a great way to not only shine a spotlight on blind spots, but also to expose closed environments. But I want to end this article on a positive note. As much as closed cultures continue to present a problem, we should never lose sight of the fact that they are present in a tiny minority of services. Yet they attract headlines and gain such prominence. As a sector, we should not be afraid to give ourselves a pat on the back every so often. We should occasionally celebrate the achievements of the many fantastic providers who achieve life changing success for those they care for. Their inspirational work may not make the newspapers but it profoundly changes lives for the better. It also shows that there is as much to learn – if not more – from the good then there is from the bad. Barry Price is a specialist in Adults with Learning Disabilities and Complex Needs. If you wish to find out more about QCS, why not contact QCS’s compliance advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email sales@qcs.co.uk?

Proud Mum Jean Welcomes Newlyweds to Care Home Garden Family care home connections guided the progress of a happy wedding day in the New Forest. As soon as they tied the knot at Ringwood registry office, Stuart and Hannah Judd drove straight to Colten Care’s Woodpeckers in Brockenhurst. The trip meant they could spend time in the garden with Stuart’s mum Jean, a resident at the Outstanding-rated home. Because of Covid restrictions, Jean was unable to attend the ceremony but enjoyed dressing up for the newlyweds’ visit to see her and show off their wedding attire. After they had decorated the home’s arched wooden gazebo with flowers, lights and drapes, team members served champagne all round to mark the happy couple’s arrival. Woodpeckers’ Companionship Team Leader Jane Bunker said: “Jean was delighted to be involved in person. It was a moment of great pride for her to see her son and his beautiful bride.” Train driver Stuart and Hannah, a chef at Colten Care’s Court

Lodge home in Lymington, had known each other in the past and reconnected when Hannah was commissioned to make a cake for Stuart’s parents’ wedding anniversary. The pair had originally planned to marry a year ago with a bigger ceremony and reception. Having postponed their special day due to the pandemic they chose exactly the same date this year to finally go ahead. Another family connection with Colten Care is that Stuart’s daughter Suzy Judd, Jean’s granddaughter, works as a healthcare assistant at Woodpeckers. And Hannah’s mum Janet also came to Woodpeckers recently for a respite stay before returning home. Jane added: “This was a wedding party that didn’t need to worry about a cake. With Hannah being a professional chef at Court Lodge, she was only too pleased to make her own wedding cake. Everyone declared it to be delicious.”

Scrumptious Scones Takeover For N&H Week’s Global Tea Party Following the recent signing of a two-year sponsorship deal with global event Nutrition & Hydration Week (N&H Week), Lakeland Dairies has launched a scrumptious scones campaign to support caterers hosting an N&H Week global tea party. The experts at Lakeland Dairies have created two exciting ‘Scrumptious Scones’ resources. The first is a Scrumptious Scones recipe resource, which is available for free now on the N&H Week website. The resource is aimed at helping caterers deliver a showstopping afternoon tea on Wednesday 16th June. It features a selection of scrumptious scone recipes, including a delicious scone dough base, showstopping Irish causeway scone recipe, plus a fortified scone recipe designed to help support those who require additional calories and protein in their diet. The second resource is a free Scrumptious Scones Activity Resource which features an additional six delicious scones recipes alongside engaging activities created specifically for care settings. From tea party quizzes to jokes, word jumbles, poems and even an activity to create bunting with expert advice from NAPA – a magnificent organisation which supports the care sector to prioritise wellbeing – so there is plenty for everyone to enjoy a wonderful tea party. Jean Cattanach, marketing controller, Lakeland Dairies comments: “We are delighted to help support caterers deliver an amazing N&H Week afternoon tea this year. The Global Tea Party is an international phenomenon which has won the hearts and minds of caterers everywhere.”

She continues: “We believe that N&H Week plays an influential role in raising awareness around the importance of good nutrition and hydration in hospital and care settings which is something Lakeland Dairies is a strong advocate of. Our Scrumptious Scones resources are a fun way to add some enjoyment to the day and we can’t wait to see all of the showstopping scones created for the event!” Everyone registering for the Scrumptious Scones Activity Resource will be automatically entered into a free prize draw, for which one lucky entrant will win 5 cases of Lakeland Dairies Millac Gold Double. Millac Gold Double is the only cream alternative with real dairy cream and added vitamin D. It’s also extremely versatile and can be used for whipping, cooking and pouring. Deliciously smooth, it combines Millac’s great tasting signature dairy flavour with professional grade stability. Producing fantastic yield, it whips up to three times in size and is perfect to make scrumptious scones for N&H Week. A further series of Lakeland Dairies resources for N&H Week will follow which will focus on fortified diets. N&H Week Global Tea Party takes place on Wednesday 16th June 2021. Download the Scrumptious Scone recipe resource here: Register for the Scrumptious Scone Activity Resource here and be entered in a draw for a chance to win 5 cases of Millac Gold Double - https://bit.ly/2SuE1X4


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 5

No More Broken Commitments on Care: Underfunded and Urgently Needs Reform says Report In its report published today (June 16) the Public Accounts Committee says the pandemic’s “devastating impact on the care sector” has emphasised that “care is not properly funded, lacks transparency and urgently needs reform.” Governments of all political persuasions have promised social care reform for the past 20 years: “white papers, green papers, consultations, independent reviews and commissions” yet, “reform has not occurred”. Commitments the Government has previously made to the PAC - to ensure long-term funding is in place; to set out plans for tackling the problems faced by the social care workforce - have not come to pass. The costs of COVID-19 and the dramatic fall in care home occupancy from around 90% at the start of the pandemic to 80% by February 2021 put many providers at risk of failing, but DHSC has “poor oversight of the system and seems complacent about the risks of local market failure”. The Government has provided welcome, significant short-term support to help providers through COVID19 - now the Committee says it is vital that DHSC clearly and in detail “sets out how it will help providers move beyond it”. The current system “does not work for local authorities or those paying for their own care”. Funding cuts have meant most local authorities pay providers below the costs of care and providers live “hand to mouth”, unable to take the long-term decisions which would improve services. While information about care quality is available, there is a lack of transparency about what people or local authorities get for the money they spend. Social care is a “people business” and the long overdue workforce strategy must “tackle low pay, improve career development and tackle unacceptably high turnover. Care workers suffer greatly from a lack of parity with the NHS in terms of pay, conditions and status.” Meg Hillier MP, Chair of the Committee, said: “Carers, younger and older adults needing care, and home care have seen decades of neglect, and the 1.5 million who work in care deserve much better. The reforms to address this now must include a long-term funding plan that allows local authorities hi Matt just sent you sent urban earlier on to say our email early on to say that we received a thought piece forward across to you and writes one

BETRAYAL

The Independent Care Group (ICG) said the Government had committed betrayal after betrayal of social care, leaving at least 1.5m people without the

care they need and many providers struggling to survive. Today’s report from the Public Accounts Committee said Covid-19’s “devastating impact on the care sector” had emphasised that “care is not properly funded, lacks transparency and urgently needs reform.” And it said that despite two decades of “white papers, green papers, consultations, independent reviews and commissions”, “reform has not occurred”. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “Here we have yet another damning indictment of the way governments have betrayed us over social care reform. “How many times do we have to tell them the house is on fire before they call the fire brigade? “We have been campaigning now for a generation and this latest report is just the latest. But our fear is that the Government simply isn’t listening. Despite promising to get social care done, it just keeps pushing reform further and further down the road.” He said reform had to come now. “The situation is becoming critical,” Mr Padgham added. “Many are now facing dire financial difficulties because their occupancy rates have not recovered since Covid-19 and they have been battered by other soaring costs associated with the pandemic, including higher staffing costs, extra PPE costs and high insurance premiums. “Providers who look after people in their own home through homecare – which is clearly a central plank to the Government’s future policy for care – are also suffering significantly. “There have been provider failures already and more are inevitable unless action is taken urgently.” “We must act fast, or we will not have a social care sector left to reform.” Some £8bn has been cut from social care spending since 2010 and 1.5m people are now living without the care they need. There are at least 120,000 vacancies in the care sector. As a starting point the ICG wants to see: • A root and branch overhaul of the way social care is planned and funded • NHS care and social care to be merged and managed either locally or nationally • Extra funding for social care, funded by taxation or National Insurance • Dementia treated like other high priority illnesses, like cancer and heart disease • A fixed percentage of GDP to be spent on social care • Social care businesses to be zero-rated for VAT.

CHALLENGES

Vic Rayner, CEO of the National Care Forum (NCF)

–said: “The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) share the ambitions of the NCF in relation to the urgent need for long term planning around the funding and workforce for social care. The Committee recognise the impact of funding cuts and how that results in authorities paying below the cost of care. This is not sustainable and the medium term response to date has involved short term sticking plasters which have done enough to steady the ship, but not to stop the water rising. The timing of the Report is very pertinent, as it recognises the intense financial pressure that providers face, and the need for the government to lay out the vital support needed to comply with government guidance in a manner that will enable care providers to plan and prepare for the ongoing challenges that COVID-19 presents to those running care services. “The Report brings to the fore the very real challenges of cross subsidy arrangements within care, determining that those who pay for their care often do so at a price that is much higher than that which any local authority will pay. However, the Committee does not go far enough in terms of calling out the inequity of

WE NOW SUPPLY A WIDE RANGE OF FURNITURE

that cross subsidy arrangement, and they should be arguing for a fair price for care – one where everyone pays the same – whether they have their care paid for by the local authority or they pay themselves. NCF have called for this in our Reform Agenda, as we agree with the Committee that the costs of care should be transparent, but at the same time, they must be paid for. It is absolutely not acceptable for any government or local authority to countenance the position outlined by the Committee where it states that ‘most local authorities pay providers below the cost of care’. “Furthermore, the Public Accounts Committee calls for a long term workforce plan. Investment in the social care workforce is essential to address issues around pay, professionalisation, skills and competences, and will also support key challenges for the sector around recruitment, retention and turnover. We agree with the Committee that a concerted commitment to social care reform must be laid before parliament as a matter of urgency if we are to make the vital changes that are so urgently needed.”


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Nurse Tracy Gough is Sharing Wellbeing Advice to Help Care Home Workers, Following a Very Challenging Year Tracy Gough 50, a nurse, with over 17 years’ experience of working at New Milton Nursing Home in Staffordshire, has been taking an active role in looking after the wellbeing of her work colleagues, especially during a very challenging 12 months for the care sector industry due to the COVID pandemic. Tracy said 'From my own experience I have seen a rise in the challenges and demands of my job role. Especially with more complex clients, longer working hours and difficulties in recruiting and retaining staff. Not to mention the very difficult year all care homes have faced with the COVID pandemic and the demands and strain this has placed on all involved.' She added 'Mental health awareness is improving and becoming less of a taboo subject. However, there is no clear definition of what mental health is, as it will vary from person to person. No two people will cope

with the same degree of stress and anxiety. Pressure may be found in both the work place and home environment. Challenging job roles, poor communication and inadequate training are just some of the things that may add to work related stress, while at home anxiety levels may escalate due to debt, difficult relationships or a traumatic event like a family bereavement. It was with this in mind, that I wrote a short Wellbeing Guide to help my colleagues cope with the day-to-day stresses of their job and home life. This was received well, with lots of positive feedback and gave staff the confidence to talk about their own wellbeing issue's'. Some of the main points discussed in Tracy's guide were: • Staff requiring adequately training to meet the needs of their clients • Staff should feel supported and confident to discuss problems they are experiencing outside of the workplace, which could be placing an impact on them while at work • Exhausting shift patterns can lead to staff 'burnout' and should be avoided where possible • Regular meetings and updates should be frequently held and shared with staff • Staff need to discuss and be given effective coping mechanisms to manage their more complex clients • Bereavement support for staff is essential, especially when most care

homes have experienced a great number of client deaths within the past 12 months • Encourage staff to look after their physical health, have adequate sleep, regular reviews of any existing health conditions, frequently exercise and allow time for relaxation, pursuing hobbies and spending time outdoors. • Staff need to feel appreciated and be given thanks for the often-challenging job that they do • Ensure there is zero tolerance for bullying and harassment in the work place Tracy expressed how it is essential that managers are vigilant in identifying any changes to personality and behaviour in their work colleagues. For example, a frequent mention of a poor sleep pattern, persistent headaches, heightened anxiety levels, excessive smoking and drinking alcohol, appearing withdrawn, an increase in sick days or being unusually quick tempered. Any of these prolonged changes may be an early warning sign of a mental health crisis if gone undetected. Tracy concluded that care homes may like to be pro-active and research local counselling and specialised services within their own area, that they can then immediately signpost staff to, if the need arises in the future.

Care Home Group Celebrates National Carers Week Coast Care Homes teamed up with Indulgent Ice creams delivering a treat for their staff and residents. To celebrate National Carers Week Coast Care Homes organised for a traditional Ice Cream van supplied by Peter of Indulgent Ice Creams to visit all four of their homes in Bexhill and St Leonards. On Wednesday June 9th residents and staff enjoyed a wide variety of flavours served in traditional cones or pots. Residents who were able went to choose and collect their ice cream from the vintage van which was parked outside of each home. Executive of Activities and Placements Poppy Bellchambers said, “There was a buzz and excitement about the home when the vintage van arrived. Staff and residents really appreciated the gesture. One resident said “This reminds me of when I was a child at the sea-

side”. Lynda and Kevin Dewhurst, the owners of Coast Care Homes said, We hired Indulgent Ice Creams as a thank you treat to visit the homes during the pandemic last summer and it was a great success. We wanted to acknowledge the hard work of every single member of the Coast Care team during ‘National Carers Week’, and this was a popular choice. “At Coast Care Homes we aim to make day-to-day life in our homes as fulfilling as possible for every individual resident. Our core belief is to promote choice and independence within a loving and stimulating environment. The vintage ice cream van proved great fun and provoked many conversations reminiscing of holiday treats in the past by the residents”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 7

Care Home Residents Can Stay Overnight As Visiting Restrictions Ease Care home residents will be able to spend more time with family and friends, including overnight stays as part of an easing of visiting restrictions announced today. Currently residents can only leave the care home for a visit if outdoors or for high-priority reasons, such as a dental or GP appointment, but will now be able to leave the home for more social reasons without having to isolate. From 21 June, people admitted to a care home from the community will no longer have to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival, so residents will have a less disruptive introduction to their new home. To ensure this happens safely, residents will undergo an enhanced testing regime – a PCR test before admission, a PCR test on the day of admission and a further PCR test 7 days later. Minister for Care, Helen Whately said: “I have heard first-hand from those living and working in care homes how difficult the restrictions around visiting have been and I’m incredibly grateful to everyone working in the sector who has helped reunite families safely. “Thanks to the continued success of the vaccine rollout, I am pleased we can now take another step towards normality, helping more people enjoy visits out of the care home while protecting them from the continued risk of COVID-19.” The government has also strengthened the role of the ‘Essential Care Giver’, which means every resident should be able to nominate a friend or family member to provide extra care on their visits. Essential Care Givers can continue to visit during outbreaks. The Essential Care Giver role is intended to provide additional support from someone with a unique personal relationship with the resident. They have access to the same PPE and testing supply as care home

workers and should be allowed to continue to visit during periods of isolation or where there is an outbreak. Care home residents would still need to isolate for 14 days following a visit out that would be deemed high risk through a risk assessment or after an overnight stay at hospital. If a person is admitted from a hospital or another care home they must also self-isolate. The government has worked to do everything it can to make sure staff are kept as safe as possible while they support others, including prioritising them for the COVID-19 vaccine, increased testing and a constant supply of free PPE. Almost £1.8 billion has been made available for adult social care including infection prevention and control measures to support providers to pay staff who are self-isolating and limit the movement of staff where possible. The National Care Forum has welcomed the changes in the latest step to restore care home visits to as close as normal as possible. visiting arrangements. Vic Rayner, CEO of the National Care Forum says: “The clear statement by government outlining that each and every care home resident should have access to an essential care giver is an important step in ensuring that all residents are supported by those who are most important to them through any further restrictions or outbreaks. The vital connection between residents and their loved ones has been broken for too long for many people, and this guidance will bring a sense of normality one step closer for those most impacted by this pandemic. In addition, the press release appears to outline a vital next step in terms of ensuring people can be admitted to care homes from their own home and we anticipate access the respite care that they need, without having to go

through 14 days of isolation. This will have a huge impact on people who need care and their families. “The pressure on carers and those needing care cannot be overstated. In recent months as people have begun to have freedoms returned, we were hearing more and more about people unable to take important decisions about when and how to access care because of the incredibly negative impact of isolation. Finally, we welcome the understanding that people in care homes are part of communities, and need to be able to take part in their wider family life by staying away overnight with family and friends and not having to isolate on return. These are all positive steps towards the full levels of freedom we hope that everyone in care homes will now be able to achieve in line with the wider population on the 19th July. “However, as ever, the implementation of this new guidance does not come without a cost. The government must take action immediately to support these changes and ensure that everyone can benefit from the updates outlined. It must not be forgotten that on 30th June all additional funding allocated to cover costs associated with Infection Prevention and Control, the management and support of visiting and enhanced testing comes to an end. Care providers desperately need future funding confirmed to ensure they can continue to pay staff to isolate effectively, to increase their capacity to facilitate and administer enhanced testing for those admitted to care homes, or visiting out of care homes, and enhanced visiting capacity and testing for greater numbers of essential care givers. Hundreds of thousands of residents and their relatives require this key issue to be addressed urgently. As ever the detail is required, and at present we are still waiting to see the full guidance underpinning these arrangements.”

Wigan Care Home Grateful For Local Pub Donation Colleagues and Residents at Ashton View residential memory, nursing and nursing memory care home, in Ashton-in-Makerfield, received a very generous donation of drinks for Residents. The Brian Boru Club, which is located across the road from the home, donated crates of Coca-Cola, diet Coca-Cola, tonic water, J2Os and cordial mixers for Residents at the home. This kind donation from the club, which has some family connections to the

home, has been described as a “Wonderful gesture” from Colleagues. Residents were very grateful for the donations. Wellbeing Coordinators Stacey Sharples and Gary Grimes, along with domestic Colleague Ann Marie are pictured with the management team at the Brian Boru. Demelza James, Care Home Manager, commented, “These drinks will be used for our next party. Thank you so much for the donation!”


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Are Social Care Providers Ready For Changes To European Settled Status Regime? By Siobhan Owers (pictured) and Ali Ali, Fragomen LLP (www.fragomen.com) Europeans living in the UK face a fundamental milestone on 30 June 2021. People from the European Union (EU), the EEA and Switzerland who arrived in the UK before 11pm on 31 December 2020 will need to apply for status with the Home Office or face becoming illegal immigrants more or less overnight. It will, says Fragomen, have major implications for social care providers both in the staff they employ and residents. European nationals who have lived in the UK for more than five years will need to have applied to the Home Office for settled status and those living in the UK for less than five years need to apply for presettled status by 30 June 2021, confirming their residence and right to access services. Over 5.4m people have applied for settled status in the past two years, yet there are many Europeans that have yet to apply. And whilst the onus is on individuals to act, employers that rely on European workers are urged to help staff with outstanding applications. Social care, with a predicted shortfall of 128,000 workers over the next decade and who have a high number of European staff is expected to feel the brunt of these changes. The rules do not expect employers to know if an existing employee has applied or been granted status under the scheme. In fact, there is no legal basis to ask incumbent employees about their status and doing so could cause problems, with social care providers facing potential discrimination claims if they insist employees to tell them their status. But the truth is that this really matters. Those who don’t apply in time could have their lives turned upside down. Failure to apply on time could potentially create some of the following unwanted scenarios for individuals, such as losing the right to start a new job, difficulty renting a new flat or obtaining a mortgage, problems accessing non-emergency

health care, driving a car or even holding a bank account. Many fundamentals of day-to-day life will be taken away overnight. The word ‘new’ is important in that list of problems. Europeans taking a new job or renting a new flat won’t be able to confirm their right to rent and work. Employers and landlords do not need to check that existing employees and tenants have applied. There is in fact an open question whether landlords could also run into legal issues and be potentially challenged in court if they insist on making checks. Nevertheless, social care providers we are talking to want to help their staff, given the potential for severely disrupted lives.

BUR WHAT CAN AND SHOULD SOCIAL CARE PROVIDERS DO? The answer is simple and straightforward – employers need to talk to their staff. If you know which staff are European nationals, talk to them directly, but equally it will do no harm to tell everyone. Friends and family need to understand these changes too. The more awareness, the better. The message can be relatively simple and should touch on the following: • You are eligible for settled or pre-settled status if you or your family members are an EU, EEA or Swiss national and were in the UK before 11pm on 31 December 2020. • The application is very simple taking around 20 minutes via an intuitive Home Office app or website. In most cases, the Home Office can track residency against tax or benefits records. • The application can take up to four weeks to be processed, after which you will be awarded a digital status rather than a stamp in a passport. You need to apply by 30 June 2021. • Do not lose track of that digital status as it will be needed when looking for work or renting a property. The digital status is in the form of an email and there is also an online portal that can be used to prove status to employers and landlords. It may be appropriate for an employer to monitor that status in the same way visas of overseas staff will be monitored. The Home Office has already granted millions of applications and we would hope very few people will have problems in making applications. But given the numbers, a few could still be tens of thousands of people. Employers will need a plan for that - what if a prospective hire or established colleague fails to apply? How will you help them? Would you be willing to absorb the cost of then having to apply for a work visa for

them?

CARE HOME RESIDENTS In addition to the implications for staff in the social care sector, care home residence also face a real risk of encountering problems with the deadline looming. Whilst the scheme is admirably efficient it is also reliant on applicants having access to and the ability to use the internet inevitably leading to vulnerable applicants missing out. It is possible to apply under the scheme using a paper-based application form but this is only available by requesting this from the Home Office’s EU Settlement Resolution centre – the details of which can only be found online. This risk has been compounded by the pandemic as those organisations given funding to assist vulnerable applicants being unable to run face-to-face outreach services at care homes.

LATE APPLICATIONS The government says it will treat late applications fairly and has confirmed that those lacking mental or physical to apply, care home residents and those receiving care and support services in their home will be assumed to have an excuse for a late application Whilst the sentiment is admirable, it is also meaningless until we see where they will grant applications and where they will refuse them. We also need to see how long it will take. I would be surprised if many people can wait even a few weeks for a decision without a job, a home or important medical treatment. Employers and service providers need to be talking about this now as a way of further highlighting these issues to the government. There has to be flexibility to start a job and more while you wait for a decision. There also needs to be a commitment to dealing with the applications, particularly for the most vulnerable applicants Even that is not enough, if there is still a risk people could be refused. We hope the Home Office will grant all qualifying applications, whatever the reason for being late. The impact on people’s lives - our friends, neighbours and colleagues – is just too big. Care home employers will not want to leave a person out of work, homeless or facing removal because they didn’t fill in a form. Siobhan Owers is a Partner and Ali Ali is an immigration paralegal at global immigration law firm Fragomen LLP. Visit www.fragomen.com

Aisle Be There – How One Care Home Team Overcame Coronavirus Restrictions To Help Resident Enjoy A Family Wedding Wedding celebrations were in full swing at an East Kilbride care home when a resident virtually attended her nephew’s wedding. Nora Sweeney, a resident at Care UK’s Cathkin House, on Glasgow Road, did not let the pandemic stop her from being part of her nephew Christopher’s wedding celebrations, as she watched the ceremony online from the comfort of her care home. Originally from Donegal, Nora, and her daughters, Margaret and Bridie, were unable to fly to Ireland for the occasion, and so the lifestyle team at Cathkin House decided to surprise Nora with a wedding reception of her own. Decorating the home with bunting and pictures of the bride and groom, the team set up a live stream of the ceremony, prepared a special afternoon tea, baked a wedding cake, and even bought Nora her very own fascinator to wear for the day. Nora’s daughter, Margaret, who joined for the celebrations, said: “We were overwhelmed when we walked into the room, the team really did go above and beyond to ensure my mother was still able to enjoy such a special day. “We all had such a fantastic afternoon, and we made memories that will last a lifetime. Both the bride and groom were extremely touched

to know that their aunty was still able to enjoy the day with them. The entire occasion is testament to the kind and loving care team, who are like an extension of our family.” Nisha Sujeewon, Home Manager at Cathkin House, said: “The past

year has been challenging for everyone, especially for families living apart. The whole team has worked hard to ensure residents still feel as involved with family life as possible. “Nora was so excited about her nephew’s wedding, and was thrilled to still be able to take part in her own special way. The team really did go above and beyond to ensure she could still celebrate and raise a glass to the happy couple. We know just how important it is for residents to be part of family occasions, so we’re delighted that Nora was able to be a part of the “e-ceremony” on the day – we could definitely hear wedding bells here at Cathkin House!” Nora added: “I was looking forward to the wedding, and to celebrating such an important family milestone. It was disappointing not to be able to attend due to the pandemic, but it all came to life on the day – I couldn’t believe how much thought had gone into the celebrations. It was very special to me.” Cathkin House provides dementia, nursing and nursing dementia care, and has been designed to enable its residents to live active and fulfilled lives, while also promoting independence. The care home incorporates space for hobby and leisure activities and has plenty of space indoor, and out, to relax.

NCF Responds To Comments From Matt Hancock The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care provided evidence to the Joint Committees of Health and Social Care and Science and Technology. The evidence provided covered a wide range of agendas in relation to the pandemic, and the way in which those receiving social care were prioritised within the pandemic was the subject of detailed questions. During the session, the Secretary of State continued to quote the recently published Public Health England (PHE) Report in relation to the number of outbreaks and deaths that can be linked to hospital discharge. The chair of the Science and Technology committee, Greg Clark, described this reliance on the data providing a full picture as a ‘stretch of the imagination’. This is helpful, as the data is an incredibly partial representation of the situation within care homes. Vic Rayner, CEO of the National Care Forum – the leading association for not for profit care providers says: “We want the committee to go further and to reject the findings of the report and call for some independent analysis, we set this out clearly to them in joint letter dated 9th June 2021. It is not possible for this data to tell you anything meaningful about the situation that care home residents and staff were facing in March and April 2020 except that it does show that hospital based infections were brought into care homes as a result of the discharge programme and the associated lack of testing. It does not give you any comprehensive data

that would allow you to determine what that ratio was, and for the Secretary of State, and a number of other officials to rely on this report to sweep away the issue around the lack of a coherent testing programme to protect those most vulnerable residents, should continue to be challenged. It is not a definitive picture and must not remain on the record as such. “In addition, his repeated assertion that there was never a national shortage of PPE rung particularly hollow for providers who struggled to access the PPE they needed exactly because of a national shortage affecting their supply chain. It appears that he is confusing the presence (or otherwise) of PPE in the country with its ability to be accessed by the self-same care homes who were having to support people whose COVID status was unknown, having been rapidly discharged from hospital without a test. This shortage of PPE across the care home sector throughout March and April was very well known to the government, highlighted within the national and local media and indeed by providers up and down the country. “It is likely that the evidence session will have done little for anyone who worked in social care, or indeed families and those receiving care and support, to shift their hard lived belief that social care was and remains the poor relation to the prioritisation of the health service.”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 9

Research Finds The Numbers of UK Over 65s Caring Unpaid Nearly Double During The Pandemic New analysis from Age UK has found that during the second wave of the pandemic, the numbers of over-65s in the UK who were providing unpaid care for someone almost doubled to more than four million. This is compared to the position before COVID-19 arrived, when 17%, or about one in six, of over-65s were found to be unpaid carers, equivalent to 2.2 million older people. Among these 4 million plus unpaid carers during the second wave aged over 65, 780,000 were actually in their eighties or beyond, meaning a massive 23% of all over 80s were providing care. The huge jump in the numbers of older people providing unpaid care during the pandemic means that at that time one in three of the entire 65 plus population in this country was providing some unpaid care. During each week of the second wave, these older carers collectively provided more than 75 million hours of free care. Most older carers (57%, equivalent to 2.3 million people) provided 20 or more hours of care every week. However, three per cent of them, or nearly 140,000, provided more than 100 hours of care each week – a staggering amount which must have taken up almost every waking hour for them, as well as some sleeping time too. Yet despite making this enormous contribution, 3%, or 140,000 of these older carers received any official respite care during the pandemic. This is a real concern because we know that caring intensively for long periods, without any relief, can take a heavy toll on a carer’s health and wellbeing, regardless of age. The Charity points out that in the case of older carers, significant numbers of them are coping with their own

long term medical problems too. We know, for example, that more than 270,000 older carers (equivalent to 7%) have a health condition of sufficient seriousness to cause them to have been placed on the Government’s shielding list. Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK said: “Our new analysis shows just how enormous the contribution of older carers has been during the pandemic, and it is humbling to realise that one in three of the entire older population has been providing some unpaid care during the health emergency we are all living through. Almost one in four of these older carers was in their eighties or beyond, which is even more extraordinary. At a time when these very old people might expect to slow down and take a well-deserved rest, they stepped up. We owe them huge respect and thanks for their hard work and commitment. “The vast majority of older carers, like all carers, do it because they want to and that hasn’t changed during the pandemic. However, what has changed is that many of the formal services they rely on to back up their efforts, or that allow them to take some time out to rest and recharge, scaled back or closed down altogether, sometimes for good. We also know that in some cases older people decided it wasn’t safe to let formal services in, because they feared they would bring the virus with them. “ “The end result is that for a whole host of reasons, during this pandemic many older carers have been left to care alone, without additional support. Caring for someone you love is pretty exhausting at the best of times but to do it day in, day out, for months, without any break, while also wor-

rying about the virus, is a recipe for physical and mental collapse, however resilient you are. It’s simply too much and that’s why it is imperative that as we look ahead to life after COVID-19, we ensure the plans and resources are in place to help our older carers keep going without risking their own health and wellbeing in the process. The opportunity to take a regular break must be part of this. “If you ask older carers what would help them the most they usually say a properly funded, reliable system of decent care. Knowing this was there would be a huge comfort and confidence-booster for them, as well as of valuable practical assistance. It would allow them to focus on the person they love, in the way they know best and often only they can do. “This Carer’s Week, the unfair, unremitting burden on older carers we are seeing is a compelling reason why the Prime Minister must follow through on his promise to ‘fix social care’. Older carers deserve better, as do those who they support.” Helen Walker, Chief Executive of Carers UK, said: “Throughout the pandemic, unpaid carers have taken on many more hours of care for their older, disabled or seriously ill loved ones, coping with greatly limited support from services and family and friends. “This Carers Week we are calling on Government to ensure carers providing upwards of 50 hours of care each week get a funded break. It is vital that carers of all ages are given the opportunity to take a break from their caring role so they can maintain their own health and wellbeing.”

Gemini Trots In To Make Wendy’s Wish Come True A resident at a Winchester dementia care home enjoyed the surprise of seeing a lifelong wish come true thanks to the efforts of a care companion. Wendy Lunn, who lives at Colten Care’s St Catherines View, was among residents talking to Companionship team leader Laura Sheldrake about pets they wished they had when they were younger. Wendy explained to the group that she had always wanted a horse of her own. Unbeknown to Wendy, Laura then reached out to the community for help and a friend, Kayleigh Standen, offered to bring her daughter Indie’s horse Gemini along for a visit. On the day, and with as much care and secrecy as possible, Gemini was slowly walked round to the back garden of the Stanmore Lane home out of sight from residents’ bedroom windows. Wendy was then invited to step outside.

“The surprise of seeing Gemini up close, and the opportunity to stroke her and spend time with her, left Wendy overjoyed,” Laura explained. “She couldn’t stop looking and smiling at Gemini or keep her hands off. It was a really precious moment.” Wendy was heard to say: “This is just lovely, she is so beautiful.” After other residents gathered for the opportunity to meet and stroke Gemini too, 12-year-old Indie gave a talk about the horse and the shows she has performed in. “Indie is brilliant,” Wendy told Laura after the visitors left. “She is so good with that horse. I wished I had my own horse when I was younger.” Laura added: “It was a beautiful visit from a delightful animal who, at least for an afternoon, made Wendy’s lifelong wish come true.”

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 11

Damning Indictment of Government Social Care Failure A new report criticising the Government’s handling of social care is yet another damning indictment of the way it cares for the country’s oldest and most vulnerable, campaigners said today. The Independent Care Group (ICG) said the Government had committed betrayal after betrayal of social care, leaving at least 1.5m people without the care they need and many providers struggling to survive. Today’s report from the Public Accounts Committee said Covid-19’s “devastating impact on the care sector” had emphasised that “care is not properly funded, lacks transparency and urgently needs reform.” And it said that despite two decades of “white papers, green papers, consultations, independent reviews and commissions”, “reform has not occurred”. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “Here we have yet another damning indictment of the way governments have betrayed us over social care reform. “How many times do we have to tell them the house is on fire before they call the fire brigade? “We have been campaigning now for a generation and this latest report is just the latest. But our fear is that the Government simply isn’t listening. Despite promising to get social care done, it just keeps pushing

reform further and further down the road.” He said reform had to come now. “The situation is becoming critical,” Mr Padgham added. “Many are now facing dire financial difficulties because their occupancy rates have not recovered since Covid-19 and they have been battered by other soaring costs associated with the pandemic, including higher staffing costs, extra PPE costs and high insurance premiums. “Providers who look after people in their own home through homecare – which is clearly a central plank to the Government’s future policy for care – are also suffering significantly. “There have been provider failures already and more are inevitable unless action is taken urgently.” “We must act fast, or we will not have a social care sector left to reform.” Some £8bn has been cut from social care spending since 2010 and 1.5m people are now living without the care they need. There are at least 120,000 vacancies in the care sector. As a starting point the ICG wants to see: • A root and branch overhaul of the way social care is planned and funded • NHS care and social care to be merged and managed either locally or nationally • Extra funding for social care, funded by taxation or National Insurance Dementia treated like other high priority illnesses, like cancer and heart disease • • A fixed percentage of GDP to be spent on social care • Social care businesses to be zero-rated for VAT.

Care Radio Launches to Support the UK’s Millions of Paid and Unpaid Carers A group of highly experienced broadcasters, journalists, producers and senior managers have launched a new not-for-profit radio station to serve the UK’s legion of nine million paid and unpaid carers. Its founders include Chair, Hedley Finn OBE, President of the International Children’s Charity, Radio Lollipop, CEO John Dash, who is the only person to be twice awarded the coveted Fellowship of the Radio Academy, and Content Director, Gary Robinson, who is a former MD of Kerrang! Radio and Downtown Radio. Over fifty other radio professionals are giving their time and skills to get the station set up and established, backed by a team of finance, fundraising, care sector, PR and technical experts. “Care Radio’s output will surprise, delight and support those in the care sector,” explains Gary Robinson. “It will include a mix of great music, interviews and listener stories.” The station has been made possible thanks to what John Dash calls a “staggering” amount of goodwill from the industry. “So much of what is needed to start a

radio station is being donated,” he says. “Not only all our broadcasters’, journalists’ and producers’ time, but also our news provision, streaming, app, marketing, website, scheduling, imaging, social media, interactive services and PR are being provided by supporters who share our vision of giving something back to carers for all they do for us every day.” Launched as a response to the pandemic and the enormous strain carers, the NHS and Social Care staff came under, and continue to work through, Care Radio aims to connect, entertain and support them. The staton can be heard through the Care Radio app, which is available from Apple and Android stores, and can be heard online at www.careradio.org. It will also soon be available on DAB multiplexes around the UK. “We’re looking at developing this project so much further over the next twelve months”, says Hedley Finn, “If you’re interested in getting involved email hello@careradio.org.”


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To Celebrate Nutrition & Hydration Week, The Craft Guild Of Chefs Release Top Six Afternoon Tea Sandwiches

The Craft Guild of Chefs has challenged two renowned members to reveal their favourite afternoon tea sandwiches to support the global event Nutrition & Hydration Week. Nutrition & Hydration Week (N&H Week) is an annual event that raises awareness of the importance of food and drink as an essential element of care. Widely supported by organisations and individuals across the world, the spotlight of this campaign week is its Global Tea Party which takes place on Wednesday, 16th June. During the day, caterers and foodservice professionals are invited to hold activities and tea parties in their organisations to improve nutritional intake for patients in a joyful environment. Craft Guild of Chefs joins in this week’s celebrations by sharing six enticing afternoon

tea sandwiches aimed to serve as an inspiration for care settings and caterers. Andrew Green, Chief Executive of The Craft Guild of Chefs, comments: ‘’At the Craft Guild of Chefs, we have been a firm believer of incorporating good nutrition and hydration as part of a healthy lifestyle. It is fantastic to see Nutrition & Hydration Week going ahead, and it is time to bring everyone together and celebrate life and wellbeing. We hope our afternoon tea recommendations will spark interest amongst caterers and those who are looking to impress during Global Tea Party.’’ Matt Owens, development chef of Alliance Group and chairman of the Craft Guild of Chefs recommends an explosion of taste without compromising on the nutritional value.

Anna Chaplaincy: Here To Help! Anna Chaplaincy began just over 11 years ago with one person - the former broadcaster Debbie Thrower, in Alton in Hampshire. Now, it’s a rapidly growing, widely respected nationwide ministry with Anna Chaplains and people in equivalent roles, in places as diverse as Orkney and Cornwall, south Wales and the Scottish highlands, Cumbria and Kent, Cheltenham and Newcastle. The purpose of Anna Chaplaincy – named after

the widow, Anna, in the Bible – is to offer spiritual care for older people and their carers, to advocate on their behalf and to champion their contribution to the wider community. As Debbie Thrower explains: "Our vision is to see an Anna Chaplain in every small- and medium-sized community in the country, and for the Anna Chaplain name to become synonymous with spiritual care for older people." Anna Chaplains work closely with care home managers and staff and carry out a wide range of activities in care homes and in the wider community. In normal times, being an Anna Chaplain involves visiting older people wherever they may be living, meeting one-to-one, hearing life-stories, taking services and home communion, drinking tea, praying, making music or simply holding someone’s hand in

The afternoon tea treat contains the classic coronation chicken, raisin, balsamic onion chutney and it is finished off with a refreshing mango mayonnaise on a fresh roast onion and turmeric bread. Another tasty alternative with a twist provided by Matt Owens is oaksmoked salmon, herb cream cheese, and lightly pickled baby cucumber served on a whiskey rye bread. Andrew Green, Chief Executive of The Craft Guild of Chefs has shared four of his favourite afternoon tea sandwiches, including the classic combination of chicken breast with tarragon creamed mayonnaise. Two other vegetarian options made the top list - a refreshing cucumber with cream cheese, dill, and chives on granary bread sandwich - and the British classic - cheddar cheese with chutney on tomato bread. Lastly, the Craft Guild of Chefs’ Chief Executive recommends a traditional deli sandwich – pastrami, dill pickle and French mustard served on rye bread. www.craftguildofchefs.org

companionable silence. They also offer pastoral support to front-line care home staff. But for Anna Chaplains, as for everyone else, these have been far from normal times. They haven’t been able to go into care homes or make home visits for months but, ever creative and adaptable, they’ve switched to Zoom and FaceTime, window visits, telephone calls, handwritten notes and individual gift bags of tea and cake. Former nurse, Sally Rees, was ordained priest and commissioned as Anna Chaplaincy Lead for Wales, in a small socially distanced but very special service at Brecon Cathedral late last September. "I’ve been part of the Anna Chaplaincy network from the very first gathering,’ she says, ‘so I’ve been witness to Anna Chaplaincy growing. "Lockdown has been very difficult for Anna Chaplains, their teams, and the people for whom we care. But in this time when we can’t ‘do’, our praying for people is no small thing – praying is never a small thing, but in these times I really do believe our

goal is to do that deeper prayer, which protects and holds and keeps." As the whole area of social care, and support for the older members of our communities, moves centre stage as a result of the pandemic, (The Carer 12.04.21), Anna Chaplains are uniquely placed to share their wisdom and experience with practitioners and policy-makers alike. Increasingly, team leaders Debbie Thrower and Julia Burton-Jones are consulted by government, church leaders and academics and there is an increasing demand for Anna Chaplaincy training and resources. In an indication of the growing regard for the work of Anna Chaplaincy, Debbie Thrower was honoured to lead a special service on BBC Radio 4 to commemorate the 125,000 people who lost their lives in the first year of pandemic. For more information go to www.annachaplaincy.org.uk. Anna Chaplaincy is a ministry of the charity BRF. For more information go to www.brf.org.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 13

Number of People Looking for Care Homes Hits Record Levels as UK Emerges From Pandemic The number of people searching for a care home has seen a huge rise as the UK emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a 33% rise on December 2020 when the UK had entered the second wave of the pandemic, when traffic to the site was 1,206,323. In March last year, just as the UK was entering lockdown, traffic to the site was 1,381,361, 17% lower than March this year. With visits now allowed again inside care homes and residents able to go on trips outside the care home, it seems people are once again turning to residential care as a safe place where elderly and disabled people can be looked after in a nurturing environment. The number of COVID-19 deaths in care homes has also seen a sharp decline due to the UK carrying out a comprehensive vaccination programme, that has seen around 95 per cent of care home residents vaccinated against COVID-19. Sue Learner, Editor of carehome.co.uk, said: “Care homes have been on the frontline during the pandemic and their staff went through a terrifying ordeal doing their best to protect their residents and keep them safe. “Residents are often like family to care home workers with some staff leaving their own families and going into lockdown at the care home. However, the huge numbers of deaths of residents – as well as the ban

on visits with families unable to see their loved ones – led to some people shunning residential care last year. “We are delighted to see this rise in traffic to carehome.co.uk as it shows trust has returned and people are once again seeing residential care as the right place for their loved ones, where they will receive care

that is tailored to their needs and take part in stimulating activities in a compassionate environment.” Joanne Balmer, Chief Executive of Oakland Care, a luxury care home provider with six communities in the south of England, leads one of those care home operators which are seeing greater interest by prospective residents and their families. “As a care provider, we have seen enquiry levels increase significantly with a record month in March 2021. Confidence to move loved ones into residential care has been restored as the vaccination programme accelerated and visiting restrictions began to ease. We have seen this increased interest throughout March and April and are looking forward to welcoming more residents and families into our homes.” Nicole Cook, Marketing and Communications Manager for Rapport Housing & Care, which has five care homes in Kent, has seen a similar rise in demand. She said: “We have received a significant surge in the traffic to our website since the first easing of restrictions in March, with enquiries and admissions increasing too. “With further easing from 17 May, we expect and hope this will continue, as the care sector has struggled significantly over the past 14 months, often being perceived as unsafe places to be, despite many care homes managing well.”

Mearns House Taste Success In Bake-Off Competition A staff member from Meallmore care home, Mearns House in Newton Mearns, is celebrating after reaching the final in a baking competition. Mearns House’s activities coordinator, Mandy Love, took part in care home provider Meallmore’s ‘Great Meallmore Bake-Off’, beating 86 other entries from the 25 Meallmore care homes across Scotland. Mandy submitted her entry: a cake inspired by life during a pandemic. In a bid to

and care staff and nutrition-related activities provided. The catering team was applauded for its outstanding service and high quality, nutritious food that caters to residents’ individual dietary needs and preferences. Speaking on reaching the final, Mandy Love said: “The last year has been incredibly tough for the care home industry, so getting into the final of the Great Meallmore Bake-Off is a real boost. It was a pleasure to share the cake with resi-

paint a picture of the ‘new normal’ in cake form, she baked two impressive cakes;

dents and colleagues at Mearns House, and I’m very grateful to everyone who

one shaped as a nurse’s uniform and the other modelled on COVID-19.

voted for me.”

The residents of Mearns House are used to enjoying culinary expertise, as Meallmore, owner of Mearns House, was recently named the winners of the ‘Nutrition and Eating Well’ award at the recent Scottish Care Home Awards. This award was presented to Meallmore for its ‘whole home approach’ to food and nutrition within its care homes, as well as providing recognition to the catering

Kirsty Craig, care home manager of Mearns House said: “The Bake-Off was a great competition organised by Meallmore to scout out hidden baking talents, not just within the kitchen teams. Mandy is a brilliant activities coordinator and organises impressive events and things to do for our residents. I’m very proud of her in making it as far as she did in the competition.”


PAGE 14 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

Covid-19 Vaccinations, The Legal Challenges For Care Providers

By Leon Deakin, partner and Beth Hullah, Coffin Mew Solicitors (www.coffinmew.co.uk)

to have the vaccine as a condition of their employment. However, and following on from a recent consultation, the Government has proposed to amend regulations in respect of those working in older adult care homes to mandate that they receive their Covid-19 jab. Mandating the vaccine in care home settings is thought to be justifiable as a high uptake of the vaccine will help protect those most at risk.

COMPULSORY VACCINATION AND ITS CHALLENGES

As the Government is set to announce compulsory vaccinations for care providers the employment challenges facing the care sector have just got significantly more complicated. The issues surrounding vaccination were already tricky for care homes, but designating compulsory vaccination for just ‘care workers’ could lead to a plethora of issues, as many care providers will have flexible roles for many of their staff. The problem is further compounded as physical contact is far from the only way any Coronavirus is transmitted as most are transmitted by respiratory droplets – i.e. coughing. So it is therefore just as likely that a member of the support team could pass on the virus and a care provider might want to reflect this in their policies

BACKGROUND Until now, the Government had not made vaccination compulsory and therefore it would have been difficult for employers to compel staff

Whilst there are undoubtedly legitimate reasons for imposing vaccination as a condition of employment, doing so doesn’t come without its risks. One risk is that compulsory vaccination could be viewed as a potential infringement of an individual’s human rights. It’s therefore important care providers demonstrate that any interference with a worker’s human rights (such as a vaccination request) is justified and proportionate in order to protect the health and safety of others. Whether or not care providers will be able to insist all staff such as catering and administrative staff are vaccinated rather than front line carers and/or visitors only will likely depend on the outcome of the Government consultation. Until then it would be prudent to assume that those who come into contact with residents less frequently or can more easily work in a socially distanced way may have stronger grounds to contest a request for compulsory vaccination. Be aware also that certain medical conditions preclude some people from having the vaccine. If vaccination becomes a condition of their employment, they may feel they have no option but to leave and could, therefore, bring a claim for constructive dismissal plus a discrimination claim on the grounds of disability. Similarly, there has been debate about how safe the vaccine is for pregnant women and, as such, pregnant workers may also have legitimate concerns about the effects of the vaccine on themselves and their baby. Additionally, with debate over COVID ‘passports’ and ‘certificates’ still

ongoing, when asking workers if they have been vaccinated, it may be sensible to limit the information you request to a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’. This is because, until clear guidance from the government is forthcoming, the situation regarding processing vaccine related data for GDPR purposes remains a little grey.

SOLUTIONS As we wait for concrete guidance from the Government regarding compulsory vaccination and its related issues, there is still much you can do. Speak openly with staff about the vaccine and encourage them to have it. Inform them of the benefits and listen to any concerns they may have. Consider what alternatives you could put in place for those unwilling to be vaccinated. Could they be moved to a different role, for example? Ensure that your Covid-19 risk assessment is up to date and outlines the approach you propose to take should a worker refuse to have the vaccine. Adopt a vaccination policy that includes the Government’s position on the vaccine in the social care sector, the health benefits and risks associated with the vaccine, vaccine training and human rights and discrimination concerns. Also, outline your Covid-secure measures such as testing, mask wearing and social distancing and ensure that this policy is maintained and reviewed in line with latest Government guidance. All care providers want to make their settings as safe as possible and any perceived gaps in virus defence will naturally be an area of concern. Therefore, until clear guidance is forthcoming, decisions surrounding compulsory vaccination must be pragmatic and risk based. Finally, it is likely there will be legal challenges to whatever the government proposes so we would advise keeping abreast of the issue and where necessary have a chat with your employment lawyer for guidance.

‘I Would Walk 500 Miles’, Say Salisbury Care Home Residents On Braemar Challenge Residents and staff at a Salisbury care home have ‘followed in the footsteps’ of singing duo The Proclaimers and walked more than 500 miles. Over 31 days, walkers at the city’s Braemar Lodge completed enough routes around their garden to match the entire distance from Salisbury to their namesake village of Braemar, 500 miles to the north in Aberdeenshire – plus 255 miles back. Their initiative raised more than £500 for Salisbury-based social enterprise The Pantry Partnership, the home’s nominated charity for this year. Kay Callow achieved the most miles among individual residents taking part. She clocked up ten miles by completing 101 laps of the garden and three laps of Victoria Park, which lies opposite Braemar Lodge across Stratford Road. Kay said: “The challenge was inspiring and I went walking every day to ensure we reached our goal.” As well as signage in the Braemar Lodge garden, there was a map on a pop-up banner showing the virtual route up to Braemar village in the Highlands. Walkers’ progress was shown against four stages, with city ‘checkpoints’ in Birmingham, Manchester, Carlisle and Edinburgh guiding the way.

Home Manager Alison Bremner said: “Our Braemar-to-Braemar challenge was fantastic and a huge success. We exceeded both our fundraising and mileage goals. It was a great way to encourage everyone to enjoy being outside in the spring weather and have something to work towards that involved both staff and residents. Just like The Proclaimers, our residents proved they were only too happy to walk

500 miles.” The initiative has gained warm praise from staff and residents at Craigard House in Ballater, the nearest care home to Braemar village itself. Like Braemar, Ballater is in Royal Deeside, so-called because of the Royal Family’s Balmoral Castle estate just a few miles away. Craigard House is owned and operated by Craigard Care whose Managing Director Stephen Cowie said: “All our staff and residents were delighted to learn that Braemar Lodge had chosen our beautiful area of Royal Deeside as their destination. We would like to extend our congratulations and admiration to the staff and residents of Braemar Lodge for their fantastic achievement of completing their Braemar-toBraemar 500-mile virtual walk.” The Pantry Partnership creates meals from food that would otherwise go to waste and shares them across the community. Volunteers help to collect, grow and prepare the food and cooking skills are taught through workshops and courses. In a message to Braemar Lodge, Fiona Ollerhead, founder of The Pantry Partnership, described the walking initiative as a ‘fabulous feat’, adding: “We love how you have embraced the virtualness of a lockdown fundraiser. We are honoured by your amazing work and support. I think you must all be considered as Salisbury’s very own Sir Captain Toms. Thank you so much.”

New Transparent Face Mask Shields Your Smile, Without Hiding It! Newly launched Smile Shield has a transparent panel to aid communication, whilst offering medical grade protection, and meeting all elements of the government’s Transparent Face Mask Specification. Smile Shield has also over 98% bacterial filtration efficiency, is breathable, splash proof and hypoallergenic. It is a British invention, created by two founders Jennifer and Lisa, who also own TAD medical, known for its range of medical supplies, already widely used by hospitals, educational facilities and the emergency Services. Jennifer Soboslay, Founder of Smile Shield comments: “Visual facial expression is a huge benefit to many industries, as communication is so important to us all, especially a smile, which can change the sentiment of the information being shared or be

encouraging without words. The Smile Shield allows lip reading, visible facial expressions, and a clearer understanding and connection between people to take place.” The Smile Shield™ can also be used as a surgical mask. The clear front panel makes the mouth visible, which is especially important for those caring for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, have a learning disability, or suffer with autism or dementia. Soboslay, adds: “We saw a gap in the market for a medical grade mask with a clear panel, that can be used by healthcare providers.” Hypoallergenic and latex free, the Smile Shield mask is comfortable to wear and offers over 98% Bacterial Filtration Efficiency. For more information about Smile Shield, please visit: www.smileshieldmask.com.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 15

Over 70 Million Total Doses of Covid-19 Vaccine Administered In UK Over 70 million COVID-19 vaccines have now been administered to adults in the UK, the latest figures published today (Friday 11 June) show, as the vaccination programme continues at unprecedented pace and scale. With 70,253,625 million doses administered in total, 41,088,485 million people across the UK have now been vaccinated with a first dose (78%), while 29,165,140 million people have had both doses (55.4%). The government met its target of offering a vaccine to the most vulnerable by 15 April and remains on track to offer a first dose to all adults by the end of July. NHS England has extended the offer of a vaccine to everyone aged 25 and over this week. Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Our COVID-19 vaccination programme continues at an unparalleled pace and we are almost at the final lap of the race to offer a dose to all adults by the end of July. “70 million total doses is a phenomenal achievement and it’s truly heartening to think that this provides 70 million shots of protection and hope for a country that has battled so hard to keep COVID-19 under control over the past 18 months. “The number of appointments booked over the past few days just goes to show how enthusiastic we are as a nation towards getting the vaccine – I urge all who are eligible to get their jab at the earliest possible opportunity.” A recent study by Public Health England (PHE) shows that two doses of the COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective against the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant. Vaccine effectiveness against symptomatic disease from the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant is similar after two doses compared to the Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant, and we expect to see even higher levels of effectiveness against hospitalisation and death.

To ensure people have the strongest possible protection against COVID-19, appointments for second doses have been brought forward from 12 to 8 weeks for the remaining people in the top nine priority groups who have yet to receive both doses. The move followed updated advice from the independent experts at the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), which has considered the latest available evidence and has recommended reducing the dosing interval to counter the threat of new variants of concern. The government and its scientific experts are monitoring the evolving situation and rates of variants closely, and will not hesitate to take additional action as necessary. Vaccines Minister, Nadhim Zahawi said: “This is another fantastic milestone and cause for celebration. 70 million vaccines administered in total is a testament to the tireless work of our brilliant health and care workforce, who I can’t thank enough for their efforts. “With over 14,000 lives saved, the benefits of the vaccine are clear – when offered the jab, make sure you book your appointment and secure the fullest possible protection you can.” Vaccinated people are far less likely to get COVID-19 with symptoms. Vaccinated people are even more unlikely to get serious COVID-19, to be admitted to hospital, or to die from it and there is growing evidence that they are less likely to pass the virus to others. Data from PHE’s real-world study shows the vaccines are already having a significant impact in the UK, reducing hospitalisations and deaths, saving 14,000 lives and preventing 42,000 hospitalisations in England. PHE analysis also shows that individuals who receive a single dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine have approximately 80% lower risk of

death against the Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant and a second dose of the vaccine can provide 85-90% protection against symptomatic disease. Protection against death from the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine rises from approximately 80% after one dose to 97% after two doses against the Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant. Data published by YouGov shows the UK continues to top the list of nations where people are willing to have a COVID-19 vaccine or have already been vaccinated. ONS data published on 9 June, shows that more than 9 in 10 (94%) adults reported positive sentiment towards the vaccine. Approved vaccines are available from thousands of NHS vaccine centres, GP practices and pharmacies. Around 98% of people live within 10 miles of a vaccination centre in England and vaccinations are taking place at sites including mosques, community centres and football stadiums. NHS England’s lead for the NHS vaccination programme, Dr Emily Lawson, said: “Thanks to staff and volunteers, the NHS COVID-19 vaccination programme broke more records this week as more than one million appointments were made in just one day as we opened to people in their twenties, and more than 85% of people aged 50 and over have now been fully vaccinated. “With well over three-quarters of adults having a first dose and more than half now fully vaccinated as part of the biggest and most successful vaccination drive in history, NHS staff continue to throw everything at getting those who are eligible jabbed, as quickly as supplies allow, so when you get that text you’re next for the jab.”

Morris Care Celebrates Valued Caring Heroes Morris Care is celebrating Carers Week (7th -13th June) this week with a special thank you gift to the 500-plus staff who deliver compassionate care across its six nursing homes in Shropshire and Cheshire. Inspired by the campaign to recognise the contribution carers make to their communities, the family-run business presented ‘Thanks a latte’ insulated cups and chocolate treats to its own caring heroes. Chief Executive Lucy Holl said: “The challenges of the Covid pandemic in particular have highlighted the importance of caring professionals and their ability to rise to those challenges. “We are so proud of the caring staff in our homes that make a difference each day to the lives of our residents through kindness and skills honed over many years.

“It takes special people to take on these roles and we wanted to show in national Carers Week how we appreciate and value the work they do.” That appreciation has also been shown by the families of residents at the company’s Oldbury Grange home in Bridgnorth. It received 14 letters of appreciation when it asked relatives to write and say how the care team had made a difference. The letters were put on display for carers to see how much they are valued when the home hosted an afternoon tea on Wednesday 9th June. General Manager Lisa Bradley said: “It was lovely to read such kind comments from family members and to know that people are grateful for all we do to provide a safe and caring home for their loved ones.”


PAGE 16 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

Supporting Care Staff Wellbeing By Richard Latham, CEO, Wellmind Health (www.wellmindhealth.com) The COVID-19 pandemic has placed unprecedented strains on our wellbeing, with a particularly heavy burden placed on health and care professionals. A recent poll carried out by the NHS Confederation’s Health and Care Women Leaders Network in February and March of this year reveals the extent of the impact on female health and care staff in England. The results show a significant rise in women working across health and care reporting a negative impact from their work on their mental and physical health as a result of the pandemic. There can be a reluctance to share if people are struggling emotionally, for fear of it damaging careers and due to the stigma still attached to mental health. It’s important to build and maintain open lines of communication, so people feel able to reach out if they are struggling. Open cultures also help us to work proactively and preventatively, helping people maintain good health and wellbeing in the first place, not just providing interventions if they are suffering. Sharing personal stories can be a powerful way of changing culture, breaking the taboo, and opening that dialogue around mental health. For some, it can be uncomfortable speaking with managers about these issues, and managers don’t always have right knowledge, skills and confidence to support. Managers can be trained in mental health first aid and awareness, and their needs must be considered too. Making time to slow down and focus on our personal needs is not

always easy, even at the best of times. Providing flexible working opportunities can help care staff to avoid burnout, be better able to cope with outside caring responsibilities, and to find the space and personal time to exercise and reconnect with themselves. Physical activity and being amongst nature and green spaces can greatly aid both our physical and mental health, so providing flexibility and encouraging staff to get outside regularly and partake in exercise

are simple but effective ways to help maintain physical and mental wellbeing. Just ten minutes of brisk walking can improve mental alertness, energy and boost our mood. The benefits of meditation are wide-ranging, from reduced stress, anxiety and fatigue to improved sleep, better emotional wellbeing and increased attention span. Group in-person or online meditation times can be organised, and digital meditation aids can help beginners. Be careful not to overload people with group sessions or make them feel like they have to participate as not everyone is comfortable with such activities. Apps can be particularly useful here, allowing people the freedom and privacy to manage their own mental wellbeing. The use of apps and digital therapeutics accelerated dramatically when lockdowns commenced and have been extremely valuable in helping to maintain and improve wellbeing. They are available 24/7, can be completed at your own pace, and offer privacy for people. There are many apps on offer to aid physical and mental wellbeing but there are variations in the levels of quality and effectiveness so it’s important to find which ones work best for your team’s needs. Some apps are NHSapproved, which can provide a level of reassurance. It’s vital that as many effective lines of support as possible are made available to our health and care sector staff, especially with females making up the vast majority of the workforce and often having to contend with significant caring responsibilities outside of work too.

Tipton Care Home Residents Smash Fundraising Goal of £1,000 for Huntington’s Disease Colleagues and residents at Exemplar Health Care’s Tipton care home, Bridgewood Mews fundraised throughout May and raised an astonishing

money for such a great cause – one that’s very close to all of our hearts. This was a great way to raise money for a very worthy charity while also

£1,000 in aid of Huntington’s Disease Association (HDA).

supporting our residents to do what they love. We’re really thankful to

Exemplar Health Care, one of England’s leading complex needs care home providers, supports adults living with a range of complex and high

everyone who has donated and helped us reach our £1,000 target, it means

acuity needs, including Huntington’s Disease. Residents at Bridgewood

the world to us!”

Mews tackled activities which included walking 12,000 steps a day, climbing Clent Hills, completing a zip wire excursion, and climbing Mount Snowdon. Kerri Towey, Clinical Nurse Manager at Bridgewood Mews, says: “We’re extremely proud of our residents for taking on these challenges to raise

The donation to HDA will support the charity’s continued work in helping those living with Huntington’s Disease, as well as providing genetic counseling to family members. HDA uses its national network to help best support those living with Huntington’s Disease to live a better life.

Preventing Infection In Care Homes with Effective, Sustainable Waste Disposal

The removal of human waste in care homes is a critical part of reducing the cycle of infection, and the global pandemic has highlighted the ease of transmission between healthcare workers and patients, and every effort should be taken to minimise the risk of infection to save residents lives. The world health organisation estimates that “with good infection control practices and careful hygiene, Healthcare-associated Infections (HAI’s) can be reduced by up to 30%” Human waste disposal is being overlooked when it comes to infection prevention in care homes, with methods including manual handwashing and reusable receptacles still being used. According to the Department of Health, a mechanical system is the recommended decontamination method for bedpans and urinals in care homes. SARSCoV-2 (COVID-19) can survive 1-2 days in urine and faeces therefore

reusable methods must be avoided. “94% of hospitals in the UK adopt the system of using mechanical macerators and disposable pulp products for collecting human waste on ward environments, especially those with bed bound patients, and care homes should be no different.” “Using pulp with macerators is a safe, environmentally friendly way of disposing of bodily waste. It maximises healthcare workers time and having reviewed the evidence and used most of the methods throughout my clinical career, it is by far the most effective” Gary Thirkell, Infection Prevention and Control Lead Nurse. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Organisation recommends that "all equipment should be single use and disposable to minimize the risk of transmission” The Vernacare human waste disposal system, features mechanical macerator machines which are installed into the home. Using a disposal pulp system for collecting human waste, the pulp items and associated maceratable wipes and gels are then put into the macerator and processed into a thin pulp which can be disposed of via the usual drainage system. The sustainable single-use system uses 100% recycled newspaper to create all pulp products; manufactured in the UK, including urinals, bed pans and wash bowls. Carole Hallam has worked as a lead nurse in the UK NHS and is now an independent infection control specialist, she commented on her

experience. “On personal experience of different systems, I wouldn't choose anything other than pulp bedpans with disposal in a macerator as this method is both efficient and easy to use with no worry of a failed disinfection cycle" Vernacare are global suppliers of innovative healthcare solutions. Creating quality products which help to improve the lives of patients, residents and healthcare professionals whilst reducing the risk of healthcare-associated infections. Vernacare is the market leader and inventor of the single use disposable system, with a history of over 50 years. Vernacare currently has a presence in more than 60 countries with over 20,000 macerators installed worldwide. Vernacare is the only company in the world to manufacture an integrated human waste management and infection prevention system. Their products are used by 500,000 patients every day worldwide. They manufacture over 170 million medical pulp containers per year. Vernacare pulp is medical grade, as it guarantees fluid retention for a minimum of 4 hours. It is composed of 100% cellulose fibres that make it 100% biodegradable in just 6 weeks. When macerated they break down to a similar size as flushed toilet paper A macerator machine consumes 60% less water and up to 96% less electricity than a bedpan washer. For further information please visit www.vernacare.com or call 01204 529494


DO YOU KNOW THE CARER’S NEXT UNSUNG HERO? Regular readers will know we here at the Carer have been awarding an Unsung Hero each Summer and Christmas since 2016! Now, in these unprecedented and testing times we are Say hello looking for another to some Unsung Hero! previous (How we wish we could winners! reward you all!)

Care Home urst of Cloverfield Marion Brockleh

Thelma O’Leary of Fern hill House Care Home

A Super Deluxe Luxury Hamper for the lucky winner! ro r last Unsung He Martyn Davies, ou

Tina Higginson of Sam brook care home

A no-frills, no glitz or glamour competition - all we ask is for you to send us a paragraph or two nominating your Unsung Hero from any department with a brief description of how they've gone that extra mile and deserve to be recognised.

✓ Do you know our next Unsung Hero? Email your nomination to us by July 9th 2021 at

nominate@thecareruk.com


PAGE 18 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

Loneliness Awareness Week: Reducing Social Isolation in Care Homes wellbeing. To reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness, care home operators can: · Improve connectivity with staff: Care home staff play a huge part in easing feelings of loneliness, particularly when visits from friends and family are prohibited. Initiatives, such as cutting edge technology, can free up staff time so that they have more opportunities to socialise with residents. · Invest in social activities: Consider coordinating different activities, such as stretching classes and choirs, to encourage residents to socialise with each other and therefore create a community spirit and strong connections. · Keep families connected: Moving to a care home can be a stressful time, particularly when it comes to being able to see friends and family regularly. Visiting policies and times which are accessible will keep residents feeling connected to their community, and families up-to-date with the lives of their relatives.

According to Christina R Victor’s ‘Loneliness in care homes: a neglected area of research?’ thesis, rates of severe loneliness reported by people living in care homes (22-42%) are more than twice that of residents in the wider community (10%). It’s important that care home operators are aware of what can be done to support their residents and staff, and reduce the risks of isolation and loneliness. For this year’s Loneliness Awareness Week (14-18 June), Bernadette Mossman, Healthcare Director at dementia care specialist Vida Healthcare, discusses how care home operators can combat feelings of loneliness and promote good wellbeing.

RESIDENTS The main role of a care home is to provide high quality care to its residents, and create a positive living environment which promotes good

effective because burnout will be less likely, and their mental health will be optimal. • Socialisation with families: Families are not only crucial to support the mental health of residents, but can also provide another outlet for staff. Good connection between staff and families will promote feelings of positivity and give both parties opportunities to create a positive environment for all involved. Care home operators which consider methods of combating loneliness, opening up lines of communication between key stakeholders, and encouraging connectivity will find that their residents live longer, healthier and happier lives, and staff recruitment and retention rates improve. For more information, please visit www.vidahealthcare.co.uk

STAFF It’s not only residents that can feel lonely in care homes. Care home operators also have a duty of care to protect their staff and promote positive mental wellbeing. • Open communication: A positive workplace environment where conversations between colleagues are encouraged will support their mental health. If an employee is feeling lonely or struggling with their work, make it clear that it’s ok for them to talk to someone about how they feel. This is often an effective way of helping people to cope, and can address an issue before it becomes severe. • Work life balance: A good work life balance is crucial for staff to be able to spend time with their friends and family, and therefore reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness. It’ll also make care provision more

Photo credit: Iza Habur

Powys Care Home Celebrates 50th Anniversary A care home in Powys is celebrating 50 years of delivering high quality care for its residents. Prestemede care home in Presteigne marked the milestone with a celebratory afternoon tea for residents and staff, with family and friends joining in the fun online via Zoom. Also joining virtually to congratulate the staff and look back over the years was Russell Brown, chief financial officer for Shaw healthcare, which has operated the home in partnership with Powys County Council since June 2019. Judith Jones, service manager, commented: “It has been a wonderful afternoon celebrating this amazing milestone. Ideally we would have opened our doors to family and friends as well as entertainers, but I am lucky to have such a dedicated and caring team who made it a very special occasion. “It was also a time to reflect on the great work of all staff, past and present. This includes our newest resident Majorie, who was herself a member of the team here decades ago, as well as several colleagues who celebrated long-service milestones. “I’d like to personally thank everyone who has made Prestemede the home it is today.”

Why Care Providers Should Complete the DSPT In mid-May, Ireland’s National Health Service (HSE) was infiltrated by hackers. The ransomware attack affected many of the Health Safety Executive’s local and national IT systems. The attack wreaked havoc. It shut down the Department of Health’s IT systems, caused appointments to be cancelled, and breached medical data staff records. The HSE attack serves as a wake-up call for many in the sector, but it shouldn't be. While there are no statistics relating specifically to the care sector, the National Cyber Security Centre handled 723 incidents within the NHS – all of them “related to Coronavirus”. We also know that the NCSC’s Active Cyber Defence Unit, detected over 120 phishing campaigns, each of them using NHS branding. In contrast, in 2019, there were only 36 phishing incidents of this kind. In light of these attacks, QCS, the leading provider of content, guidance and standards for the health care sector, is calling on social care providers, who haven’t already done so, to complete the Data Security and Protection toolkit. With the deadline just 20 days away (June, 30th), Leah Cooke, QCS’s Content Operations Manager, says: “To safeguard their businesses, from cyber attack, while social care

providers should follow the steps outlined in the NCSC’s ‘Small Business Guide’ and the ‘Cyber Security for Small Organisations and Charities’ e-learning guide, the best form of defence is to complete the ‘Data Security and Protection toolkit’. It is not too late, and having studied the DSPT in great detail, I can vouch for the fact that the DSPT is an excellent resource, which will provide Registered Managers and staff with an all-round holistic knowledge and understanding of the pervasive and numerous cyber threats that they’re likely to encounter. But not only this, it is the best way to build a robust culture of cyber security throughout an organisation – as everyone in a care home – including admin staff, activity teams, chefs, cleaners and third-party contractors - can benefit.” Leah Cooke reveals the secrets behind a strong culture of cyber security: “The DSPT is a key building block in inculcating such a culture. But, it is just the first step in raising awareness throughout an organisation. Frontline managers and senior staff still need to lay a vital role in ensuring that knowledge is cascaded down to all staff that work for the care provider. Group awareness sessions can help reinforce the importance of digital hygiene, and on the rare occasions that mistakes are made, the culture shouldn’t be one of blame, but of openness. With such a culture in place, everyone in the care home should subconsciously be aware of the basic requirements. Tasks such as creating strong passwords, changing them regularly and keeping anti-virus software up-to-date should come naturally. If they do, that’s when you know that a culture of cyber security has been deeply embedded within your organisation.”

Care Home Group Founder Set To Pass On The Baton Shaw healthcare (Group) Limited, the largest employee-owned healthcare group in the UK and one of Wales’ largest companies, has announced the appointment of Russell Brown as only the second Chief Executive Officer in the organisation’s history. Mr Brown will take up the role in November, when the present CEO and Shaw’s founder, Jeremy Nixey, retires at the end of October after more than 40 years at the head of the organisation. Russell Brown joined Shaw healthcare 13 years ago as Chief Financial Officer during which time he has directed a transformation in the finances of the group, which now has a significantly strengthened balance sheet. He also oversaw the legal and financial negotiations which led to the company becoming majorityowned by its employees, through an Employee Ownership Trust, in May 2020. Commenting on the new appointment and reflecting on the role played by

Jeremy Nixey in the development of the organisation, Shaw healthcare chairman Alun Thomas said: “Jeremy’s achievements in establishing and shaping the growth and development of Shaw healthcare, through some incredibly challenging times, have been truly remarkable. Russell has a deep understanding of the organisation and its values, which makes him the perfect person to take up the reins and lead the group into its next chapter.” Shaw healthcare is headquartered in Cardiff and employs 3,500 staff in its sixty-seven care homes, community hospitals and care settings, spread throughout Wales, England and Scotland. Mr Nixey will remain a Non-Executive Director on Shaw healthcare’s board and continue in his role as chief executive officer of the Shaw Foundation, an exempt charity which partners with care businesses, public organisations and other charities to improve care for all.



PAGE 20 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

Annual Prescription Costs For England Published Published by NHS Business Services Authority, the annual Prescription Cost Analysis (PCA) includes information about the costs and volumes of prescriptions that have been dispensed in England. It is an Official National Statistics publication. Key findings this year: • The cost of prescription items (each item on a prescription) dispensed in the community in England was £9.61 billion, a 3.49% increase of £324 million from £9.28 billion in 2019/20. • The number of prescription items dispensed in the community in England was 1.11 billion, a 1.90% decrease of 21.5 million items from 1.13 billion in 2019/20. • Atorvastatin (a ‘statin’ which reduces the amount of cholesterol made by the liver) was the most dispensed drug in England in 2020/21 with 49.9 million items, while Apixaban (an anticoagulant to prevent blood clots) was the drug with the highest cost of £356 million. • Sertraline (antidepressant) 100mg tablets was the presentation with the largest absolute increase in cost between 2019/20 and 2020/21 of £78.9 million, from £21.0 million to £99.9 million. (The costs of sertraline increased by 376% between 2019/20 and 2020/21, while the number of items prescribed increased by 7.51%). The cost of prescription items dispensed in England in 2020/21 was £9.61

billion. This was a 3.49% increase of £324 million from £9.28 billion in 2019/20 and a 7.41% increase of £663 million from £8.94 billion in 2014/15. This is the second consecutive year that the cost of items dispensed in England has increased following three consecutive years of decreases between 2015/16 and 2018/19. A price concession was granted for sertraline 100mg and 50mg by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) for the period April 2020 to October 2020. Concessions are granted where pharmacists may face difficulties in getting medicines at their usual prices due to supply or other issues. They are announced on the NHSBSA website. The Prescription Cost Analysis includes the top 10 most dispensed drugs in England. Five of these including Atorvastatin above, often treat cardiovascular ailments, (Atorvastatin, Amlodipine, Ramipril, Bisoprolol fumarate, and Aspirin). For the full report go to: https://www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/statistical-collections/prescription-cost-analysis-england/prescription-cost-analysis-england-202021.

“Excellent” West Sussex Day Service Becomes UK’s First To Receive Accreditation For Excellence In Dementia Care A West Sussex day service has become the first of its kind in the UK and internationally to be accredited with The Butterfly Approach – establishing an exemplary dementia care culture where people can thrive. Bradbury Wellbeing Centre, in Worthing, recently received the highly regarded accreditation from care and culture consultancy, Meaningful Care Matters, for the successful implementation of its personcentred care model. The Butterfly Approach has a meticulous focus on creating a personcentred care culture where people are ‘free to be me’. The model values emotional intelligence, relationship based care culture, and the core belief that everyone has a unique story that has meaning and matters. It is about putting the focus back on people and their emotions by engaging in the reality of people’s lived experience in the ‘here and now’. Bradbury Wellbeing Centre achieved an Excellent rating from Meaningful Care Matters, who described the service’s team as having a “meaningful rapport with the people in attendance at the day centre”. It was also reported how they had shown “such resilience and truly continued to ‘Be a Butterfly’, creating moments of meaningful engagement for all.” Opened in 2015, the day service is operated by Guild Care, a Worthingbased charity that provides a wide range of community services to support older people and children and adults with learning disabilities. Adjacent to Guild Care’s Haviland House dementia care home,

Bradbury Wellbeing Centre offers an extensive and innovative programme of events, and provides a safe and stimulating environment for people living with dementia each year, whilst at the same time offering respite for their carers. During the recent pandemic, Guild Care adapted its services, offering telephone befriending support, day services at home, and face-toface respite services at reduced capacity to enable social distancing. Upon receiving the accreditation, Claire Howell, Guild Care’s

Director of Community Services, said: “We couldn’t be more thrilled that the Bradbury Wellbeing Centre has received an ‘Excellent’ accreditation from Meaningful Care Matters as a result of their recent audit. Person-centred care is an essential component of every Guild Care service, from our community services right through to our nursing homes, but no more so than when we are supporting those living with dementia and their carers. We pride ourselves on creating a loving environment where everyone matters and each person is free to be themselves, whether they are a service user, a relative, a volunteer, or a member of staff.” Peter Bewert, Managing Director of Meaningful Care Matters, said: “We're delighted to see our partners at Bradbury Wellbeing Centre becoming the first day centre in the UK to be awarded accreditation under The Butterfly Approach®. It has been testing time for the social care sector, so we applaud their determination to offer an environment where people using their services can thrive and enjoy the highest quality of life possible. We look forward to assisting more day centres in facilitating the creation, reinvigoration and sustainable implementation of personcentred care cultures. It’s coming back to the art and heart of care, where people, and moments, matter.” For more information on Meaningful Care Matters and its cultural transformation models, visit https://meaningfulcarematters.com/. Alternatively, for more information on Bradbury Wellbeing Centre and Guild Care, visit https://www.guildcare.org/.

National Resource Consortium (NRC) and Anenta Come Together to Manage We Care Group Healthcare and Clinical Waste Services Across 16 Locations in the North and Northwest England The UK’s leading network of independent waste operators, National Resource Consortium (NRC), has announced that it has joined forces with independent healthcare waste management company, Anenta, to oversee and manage the healthcare, clinical waste and disposal services for nursing and care home operator, We Care Group. The partnership between both waste management companies is helping the nursing and care home group achieve savings of over 14% on their waste services from the offset, with further savings to come as services are standardised across all 16 locations in the North and Northwest of England. The resource management network, NRC, combines expertise from the UK’s leading independent waste firms to deliver unrivalled waste collection and processing capacity for We Care Group. Acting as contract manager, NRC takes responsibility for the group’s volume waste management with all services provided by their network of local members. Through centralised contract management, NRC has already consolidated We Care Group’s existing waste contracts with various waste providers into one single, reliable point of contact across eight locations, with eight more to come. Through the ability to mobilise a national network of providers, NRC offers a single rate solution with 100% UK coverage and the flexibility to meet all We Care Group’s local needs. As a result, We Care Group is already benefitting from a 1/7th saving on its waste costs for the on-boarded care homes, thanks to a simple and transparent pricing schedule. The three-year fixed-term contract with We Care Group com-

menced in January 2021. All 16 locations are set to be under the single agreement by mid-2022. Commenting on NRC’s appointment Paul Jackson, Director of NRC, said: “We Care was buying waste services locally, individually, site by site, and not benefiting from the cost, waste and recycling efficiency of consolidating their estate into one contract. “Both NRC and Anenta offer compliance and service-based packages at competitive rates under a single agreement. This provides customers, like We Care Group, with greater transparency, control and peace of mind over their healthcare and clinical waste management, which is an essential service for any care provider.” We Care Group operates 16 Care and Nursing Homes in Liverpool, Blackpool, Southport, Leeds, Hull and surrounding areas across North and Northwest England. Specialising in residential, palliative, end of life, dementia, bariatrics and young mental health care, We Care Group pro-

vides all 735 residents with happy, safe and homely environments in which their care, wellbeing and comfort is of prime importance. With Anenta’s dedicated, online contract management platform ‘Vector’, NRC will be able to deliver service efficiencies and identify savings that will be implemented across the group’s 16 locations. Anenta’s cutting-edge, real-time smart technology, ensures that the We Care Group receives effective contract management against existing specifications. Going forward Anenta’s integrated solution, which ensures that services are correctly specified, will provide NRC with the data needed to offer We Care Group complete transparency and the ability to proactively manage their environmental services, all in one place. Graham Flynn, Managing Director at Anenta, commented: “Anenta is delighted to be working in partnership with NRC to provide healthcare and clinical waste services for We Care Group. By consolidating multiple contracts, each of which has different end dates and varying prices, into one standard contract with uniform pricing, our real-time smart technology will provide We Care Group with vital savings worth many thousands of pounds each year.” Working for more than 8000 customers, Anenta simplifies the process of healthcare waste management, collectively saving clients millions of pounds each year. Over the past five years, Anenta has saved its clients over £5.6 million. Bernie Suresparan, Chairman at We Care Group, commented: “We selected NRC after reviewing all of our waste requirements with our procurement partner. We needed to gain control over our contracting process and to find savings – NRC offered us a centralised, managed process with initial savings – we are looking forward to developing our relationship with NRC and identifying future benefits.” Find out more about NRC and Anenta by visiting www.uk-nrc.com and www.anentawaste.com.



PAGE 22 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

How Technology is Transforming The Future of Social Care

by Steve Morgan, Partnership Director, Agilisys (www.agilisys.co.uk)

Chronic underfunding, a workforce crisis, insufficient modernisation and COVID-19 are all testing social care to the limits. There is now, however, an opportunity to reassess, redesign and re-ignite a strategy for lasting, effective change as we emerge from the pandemic. The social care system is complex and fragmented, with care being provided by around 18,500 organisations throughout the country. Good practice being developed in one part of the care sector is difficult to share. A joined-up view is needed to achieve a clear vision. By thinking long-term and bringing together the fragmented sector, funding decisions can be made to drive efficiencies and modernise the traditional service, to benefit all.

ADVANCES IN TECHNOLOGY ARE LEADING THE WAY Demand for care is not going to reduce, so it’s down to critical technologies to transform the future of care:

• Advanced predictive analytics Data is critical to any strategic, joined-up future of care. Predictive analytics can help understand when somebody is in danger of needing health or residential care, which can dramatically reduce the overall cost of care delivery. Using data to inform more effective decisions is the way forward and with the use of the Integrated care system (ICS) and how it will bring together data collection and joined-up data usage.

• Data collection at home Technology can identify when there are issues with damp, carbon dioxide, humidity and temperature. Having knowledge of the environment vulnerable people are living in, can reduce and remove any knock-on effects.

• Social care cost modelling Social care makes up most of local authority spend. In 2018/19, total expenditure on social care by councils was £22.2bn. Using data to predict outcomes and effective routes, social care cost modelling enables users to take any cohort of children or adults and apply one or more of a huge range of potential scenarios to it. This shows authorities how much social care services are costing them, and what they can do about it.

• Microsoft Viva

• Tools for collaboration

The transition to permanent remote working raises a crucial question: how does an organisation create a culture, a sense of belonging, a mission and connection in the absence of a physical presence? Employee Experience platforms such as Viva focus on employee wellbeing to help avoid burnout, highlight efficiency gains, and bring knowledge together in one place.

There is a growing movement towards a 'delivery ecosystem' of collaboration tools. You can plug a variety of options into one connectivity hub, which enables everything from telehealth and telecare to social inclusion and family contact, without the need to have six or seven different boxes.

• Reduced inbound demand, through automation There has been a fundamental switch from inbound telephony-based contact services to proactive outbound ones. To make those services more productive, you have to reduce inbound demand. That is where artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and robotic process automation (RPA) are important. If the repeatable and everyday tasks are automated, staff have more time to make a difference to the people they care for.

• Remote working solutions Providing frontline staff with remote working solutions, encompassing software and client information, allows professionals to spend more time with their clients, speed up data capture, decision-making and reduce transcribing errors.

USER ENGAGEMENT KEY TO SUCCESS Technology alone will not drive the change. If the purpose of a new app or software is not apparent, then it already presents a cognitive

issue to your team. Only by engaging the intended users through a change programme will change have the opportunity to succeed. Stimulate conversations, test ideas and gain buy-in from those who will be using the technology every-day.

HOW CAN WE TAKE ACTION NOW? 1. Plan Think of every aspect of care delivery. Is it the right thing to do? Is the level of spending correct? What is the value? Do this right and it will drive a fundamental shift in thinking; towards treating the delivery of care like a business.

2. Introduce strategic thinking Care is one of those few areas in in the 21st century, where there appears to be little strategic thinking around the continual improvement of service delivery. It is time to mirror the NHS and implement a fiveyear plan.

3. Map opportunities for partnerships Currently, different bodies deliver assessments dependent on the area. Far better to bring those together and have them delivered by a single individual who is empowered to operate on behalf of those other organisations. Joined-up, multi-agency thinking is required.

4. Think prevention, not cure Preventative investment in social care will deliver benefits to society as more people will stay healthy, happy, and independent for as long as possible.

5. Embrace organisation-wide technology A recent paper from Socitm showed social workers are more ‘digital ready’ than previously thought. More frontline staff need to be identifying opportunities for digital improvements; not just in service management and client outcomes, but in what the future of social care could be. By investing in preventative, person-centred approaches, including asset-based solutions to reducing social isolation, shared lives and community agents, outcomes can be improved, and costs reduced. Technology has a huge potential to support more people to live independently. Data, workforce and true partnerships are critical in delivering care at the right time, making differences for people.

Hallmark Care Homes To Host A Jam-Packed Virtual Event To Celebrate Care Home Open Week! Hallmark Care Homes will support Care Home Open Week and Championing Social Care on Thursday 1st July by hosting a live virtual event where attendees can experience a taste of all they have to offer residents. The special event will be hosted by the Executive Chairman of Hallmark and Care England, Avnish Goyal and will be live-streamed from Henley Manor, the care group’s £15 million facility in Henley on Thames. It is being held in association with Care Home Open Week which runs from 28th June to 4th July. Care Home Open Week aims to connect care homes with their local communities, challenge misconceptions about care and remind everyone that the unique individuals who live in care homes are supported by dedicated and professional caring teams. During the fun and informative event, attendees can get an insight into what it is like to live in one of Hallmark’s multi-award-winning care homes. They’ll get to meet some of their experienced team members and trusted partners and find out what they do differently at the family-run care group. The event will be split into a morning and afternoon session commencing at 11am and 2pm. The afternoon session will feature a live panel discussion with some surprise guests, debating ‘How do

we restore confidence in the social care sector following the pandemic?’ Throughout the day, team members and residents at each Hallmark home will be taking part in a Danceathon to raise money for Musica Music and Wellbeing, a social enterprise that supports people living with dementia and their caregivers to use music in their daily lives. The Hallmark Team hopes to raise £1,000 which will enable Musica to deliver their online music activity library, Musica Connect, free of charge to individuals living with dementia. Avnish Goyal said: “I am delighted to be hosting this event, which will showcase everything that is great about our caring communities! “Our teams have worked hard to put together a full and engaging schedule of activities for attendees and after a difficult year for the sector, I cannot wait to make some positive noise as part of our extensive Care Home Open Week celebrations.” If you would like to view the full schedule of activities and register for the event you can do so here: https://bit.ly/tasteofhallmark

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PAGE 24 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

Vic Rayner, CEO of NCF Receives an OBE in The Queen’s 2021 Birthday Honours Vic Rayner, Chief Executive of the National Care Forum (NCF) – the leading association for not-for-profit care providers has received an OBE in The Queen’s 2021 Birthday Honours for services to the social care sector. Vic Rayner said: “I am delighted to have received this huge honour. It is a privilege to work in a sector supporting millions of people to improve their quality of life and wellbeing. The last year has shone a light on the social care sector and how instrumental it is and the enormous impact it makes to people’s lives.” As CEO of the NCF Vic Rayner chairs and contributes to multiple strategic government and national specialist groups with a focus on the social care workforce, digital transformation, new models of care and regulation. She has worked for over twenty five years in the fields of care, housing and communities and is recognised as a national expert in these areas. In addition to her role at NCF she is currently on the boards of a range of UK and international organisations. Rayner has provided strong leadership and representation for the

the country’s first line social care support. She has worked tirelessly to influence policy, promote collaboration and co-production, and advocate for the best interests of those who receive care and support throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and for many years beforehand. Her commitment to the social care sector and entrepreneurial vision provides a strong focus in the debate on social care reform, and is paving the way for long-term strategic change. Andy Cole, Chair of NCF commented: “Vic is an extraordinary champion for social care. Her passion and dedication have helped shape the whole sector and her tireless efforts during the pandemic have made a massive difference to the lives of hundreds of thousands of people who use or work in social care. I am so delighted that Vic has received this wonderful and well-deserved recognition.” The rank of Officer of the Order of the British Empire is awarded to not-for-profit care sector, alongside advocating for the wider interests of

people who have made a significant contribution in their respective fields.

Oakland Care CEO Joanne Balmer Awarded BEM In Queen’s Birthday Honours Oakland Care CEO Joanne Balmer has been awarded a British Empire Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to social care during the pandemic. Joanne was given the commendation in recognition of her leadership of Oakland Care’s six luxury care homes across the country during the turbulence brought on by COVID-19. Under her leadership, each of their care homes continued to deliver industry-leading care, always prioritising the physical and emotional wellbeing of their residents and team members. The announcement comes as the care home provider opened its doors at their new purpose built care home Elmbrook Court in Wantage having only recently

opened another state of the art home in Enfield - Elsyng House. Speaking of her award, Joanne Balmer said: "I'm both surprised and delighted to receive the British Empire Medal in the Queen's Birthday Honours list for services to Social Care. I have worked in Health and Social care for over 20 years, but still I never expected to receive such a special recognition. I accept the medal warmly in recognition for the efforts of my entire team at Oakland Care, who dedicate their heart and soul to fulfilling our mission every day."

Age UK's Charity Director Awarded a CBE Steph Harland, CEO at Age UK, comments: ‘We are thrilled that Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, has been awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2021 for her services to the voluntary sector and older people during COVID-19. ‘Caroline has dedicated herself to making life better for older people ever since she joined Age UK in 2012. This has been more true than ever during the past year, when she has worked with energy and compassion to lead Age UK’s public response to the pandemic and to make sure that older people are not being forgotten at this exceptionally difficult time. ‘During her tenure at Age UK, Caroline has been asked to advise the government on social care, she is co-chair of the Care and Support Alliance and was a Senior Responsible Officer for the NHS Long Term Plan. ‘There is no doubt that Caroline's leadership and commitment drive Age UK’s impact when it comes to our influencing to improve the lives of older people. This recognition in the Queen’s Birthday Honours is richly deserved and we are all delighted for her.’

NHS Trust's Chief Executive Receives MBE in Queen’s Birthday Honours Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust’s Chief Executive Mel Coombes has been awarded an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) by Her Majesty the Queen in recognition of her dedication and passion for helping patients during a career spanning more than three decades. Mel Coombes MBE, who has been given the prestigious title in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, has worked for the NHS for 36 years. She started out as a staff nurse in 1987 and since January 2021 is the Chief Executive of Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust (CWPT); the lead provider of mental health, learning disabilities, autism and physical community health services in Coventry and Warwickshire. Mel is passionate about improving the lives of people with mental health needs and people with a learning disability, and in 2002 she became one of the first Consultant Nurses for people with learning disabilities. As part of this role she informed national policy, pioneered work around health inequalities and coauthored a range guidance to support the continuous professional development of the learning disability nursing profession. Some of Mel’s many achievements include advising on the development of a national competency framework for mental health nursing , being the Lead Director for a new service model for the care and treatment of adults with learning disabilities and being nominated into a leadership role on the development and delivery of the ‘AllEngland Plan for Learning Disability and Mental Health Nursing’. On receiving the news of her recognition, Mel said:

“When I first opened the letter I was in shock, I am absolutely thrilled and honoured to receive this recognition. I owe a lot to my family, friends and of course my colleagues who have supported me throughout and have continued to show their commitment, compassion and have gone above and beyond during the pandemic. I couldn’t be prouder of the wonderful teams I work with.” Over the past year and a half, Mel has been central to CWPT’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and instrumental in ensuring that the trust has consistently ensured the safety of patients and staff whilst continuing to deliver services. Mel said: “I have the absolute honour of being the Chief Executive for CWPT and making sure we support our colleagues, our patients and their families from the local communities we serve; making sure we do everything possible to give great care and be a great place to work. I cannot think of a more rewarding role and I can honestly say I am very proud of everyone at CWPT and the patients, especially during the past year which has been very difficult for everyone. They all make me want to do better and strive for the best.” Jagtar Singh, Chair of CWPT, said: “We are immensely proud of Mel, who is so deserving of this recognition. “All of our staff are passionate about offering the very best care for our patients and families, but you would have to go a long way to find anyone more motivated and standards-driven than Mel. “We are so fortunate to have her as our leader and we look forward to her day at the Palace when we will share in her joy and achievement.” Until taking up her current role as Chief Executive Mel was also the Chair of the National Mental Health and Learning Disabilities Nurse Director Forum and has played a critical role in ensuring that the voices of mental health and learning disability service users and staff have been heard, and ensuring that policy decisions at national level have reflected any specific needs of these service areas. Mel will receive her award at a ceremony later in the year.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 25

Solihull Care Home Manager Awarded MBE In The Queen’s Birthday Honours List Royal Star & Garter’s Solihull Home Manager has been made an MBE in The Queen’s Birthday Honours list. Cheryl Harbourne received the award in recognition of her Service to Veterans during Covid-19. The registered nurse, who has worked in social care since 2006, said she was “astounded” by the honour, and praised the staff who work with her at the Tudor Coppice Home. Royal Star & Garter is a charity which provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia. Since Cheryl joined as Home Manager in 2015, Royal Star & Garter in Solihull has received two Outstanding Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspections – the second of which in 2020 placed it among the very best in the country after it earned the top rating across all five tested areas. The Home has also been acknowledged at the prestigious Markel 3rd Sector Care Awards, and has achieved Care England Teaching Care Home recognition. And it played a key role in Royal Star & Garter winning the Professional Excellence category in Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Hero Awards in May 2021. Throughout the pandemic, Cheryl has demonstrated exceptional leadership. In March and April last year, she led 35 members of staff who volunteered for a two-week live-in at the Home, in a pre-emptive step to ensure all 60 residents stayed safe while infection rates soared

in the local area. This was repeated with a further week later in the year. Along with her hugely proactive approach to infection control management, this meant no residents or staff were affected by Covid-19 until November 2020. When the virus did enter the Home, Cheryl and her team redoubled their efforts to ensure that residents were protected, cared for and fully

supported. One resident sadly died after contracting the virus, but Cheryl’s professionalism and commitment is credited with saving many lives. She also enabled residents to ‘meet’ loved ones when visiting restrictions were in place, first by organising for families to drive by the Home, and later driving residents to relatives’ homes in a minibus for doorstep and driveway visits. Cheryl said: “I am astounded, but delighted to receive this award for doing a job that I both love and feel very privileged to have. The residents are very precious to me, and I owe a huge thank you to the dedicated team at the Solihull Home, who support me to ensure the residents live their best lives with us. The pandemic has undoubtedly been my greatest professional challenge to date, but one of the positive outcomes has been how we have bonded even more as a family, in the absence of loved ones in all our lives throughout the lockdowns.” Royal Star & Garter Chief Executive Andy Cole said: “Cheryl is a remarkable combination of leader and care expert, with passion and energy which she focusses to provide a truly wonderful experience for our residents. Her extraordinary efforts on behalf of our staff, residents and their families through the most challenging 15 months, as well as over the past five and a half years at the charity, make her a worthy and deserved recipient of this wonderful honour.”

Didcot Care Home Bursar Receives BEM In Queen’s Birthday Honours Michelle Law, who works as a bursar at The Meadows care home in Didcot has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours for her inspirational work during the COVID-19 pandemic. Michelle, who works for The Orders of St John Care Trust (OSJCT), took on many extra roles such as housekeeper, chef, and family liaison during the initial wave when asymptomatic colleagues were at home in isolation. The mother of four, who lives in Grove, near Wantage, and has been featured in the National Care Forum (NCF) Caring in Covid book, was put forward for the Award for services to care home residents far above and beyond her day-to-day role. From March 2020, Michelle found herself working extra hours and weekends to cover the work of colleagues who were sent home because of COVID-19, to ensure the home ran smoothly and the sixty plus residents were well cared for. Michelle, who joined the Trust in 2017, also took on the very special and sensitive role of communicating with family members of loved ones in the home who fell ill with COVID-19, of which some sadly died. She organised video calls between residents and relatives, organised video calls to show bereaved relatives the treasured keepsakes left by their loved ones and went on to organise and live stream a funeral for family members abroad who could not attend due to living in USA and Canada. Michelle also took on housekeeping, cooking and recruitment administration when needed. Every evening Michelle went home to her family and helped to organise home schooling for her younger children.

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Michelle said: “I am shocked and but totally honoured to be awarded this BEM. The onset of COVID-19 last year was very hard for all of us working in care but we pulled together to reassure and care for our residents, and to keep in touch with family members. “It was never a question for me really. I love working at The Meadows. I feel truly honoured to work alongside such amazing people and we are all part of a huge family. I couldn’t sit back and watch other people struggle or see a need and not help to meet it.” OSJCT Chief Executive, Dan Hayes, said: “Michelle is a wonderful example of the kind of compassionate, committed, and latterly heroic individuals that work in social care. Her devotion has meant that her home, The Meadows in Didcot, has never been short of support. She has been a catalyst amongst a great group of colleagues that work in the home, and without people like Michelle, quite frankly we couldn’t do what we do. There are so many people in our Trust deserving of national recognition like this, and I know that every one of them will be delighted that Michelle is to receive this honour.” Home Manager, Valerie Jarvis, said: “Everyone at The Meadows is thrilled that Michelle has been included in this year’s Queen’s Honours. She is a wonderful part of our team; she never complains and is always ready to help with a smile on her face. “Everyone within the home was extremely committed to ensure our resident’s safety and wellbeing were priority since March 2020, and Michelle rallied to every challenge we faced with dedication, professionalism and total commitment.” Michelle will receive her medal at an official ceremony later in the year.

H.W. PICKRELL

Celebrating 40 years of trolleys!

Providing practical and stylish trolleys to suit your needs. Watch your resident’s eyes light up when the beautiful tea trolley arrives..! Or even the drinks trolley for an afternoon tipple? Euroservice trolleys are an attractive and practical alternative to clinical aluminium trolleys given that antibacterial spray can be used freely to sanitise them.

Visit the website at euroservice-uk.com to see the full range.

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. • Fully serviced, new mot & warranty • Engineers inspection supplied if required.

• Free delivery service available Moreover, when not in use the attractive trolleys can be used as a vending trolley, selling personal care products to residents or snacks/pastries to visitors. Your lovely trolley could do so much for you and your residents! Get in touch with our friendly, experienced sales team who will be happy to help!

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

Tel: 01268 521033 Mobile: 07860 894331 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


PAGE 26 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

Children Help Combat Loneliness and Bring Joy To Care Workers and Residents Specialist dementia care home provider, Vida Healthcare has teamed up with Saltergate Schools to bring joy and happiness to frontline workers and residents in support of Loneliness Awareness Week 2021. This year’s Loneliness Awareness Week, which takes place on 14-18 June, aims to encourage people to talk about loneliness in an attempt to remove the stigma and shame around it. To support the theme, the children have handwritten letters for each resident and care worker across Vida Healthcare’s two homes; Vida Grange and Vida Hall. They’ve also handcrafted beautiful butterflies to brighten up the home and raise people’s spirits. Linda Mortimer, Executive Headteacher at Saltergate Schools, who led the initiative, commented: “Everybody is likely to experience loneliness at some point in their life. Many people have recently felt very isolated after a year of lockdowns and social restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic. “Loneliness Awareness Week was the perfect opportunity for us to

give back to our local community and educate our children about loneliness. Accepting that we all feel lonely sometimes is an important lesson and learning what we can do to help others and ourselves manage

feelings of loneliness is critical. Over one million older people report feeling lonely all the time1, and even when living in a care home, loneliness and isolation can still occur. According to Christina R Victor’s ‘Loneliness in care homes: a neglected area of research?’ thesis, rates of severe loneliness reported by people living in care homes (22-42%) are more than twice that of residents in the wider community (10%). James Rycroft, Managing Director at Vida Healthcare, added: “The main role of a care home is to provide high quality care to its residents and create a positive living environment which promotes good wellbeing and reduces feelings of isolation and loneliness. This is something we’re proud to achieve at Vida Healthcare. “We are so pleased to have had the support this year from Saltergate Schools to make our staff and residents feel extra special. The butterflies look fantastic and our residents and staff have all been really touched by the handwritten letters.”

Resident at Lofthouse Care Home Learns to Walk Again Nine years ago, Stella Nicholson was told she would never walk again, after a series of worrying falls and a short stay in hospital. Now, Stella has undertaken physiotherapy and with the support of staff at Lofthouse Care Home in Lofthouse, Wakefield, she is able to walk 11 steps unaided. After her health took a turn for the worse in March 2021, Stella was admitted to St James Hospital and diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Whilst in hospital, she mentioned to the carers that she was awaiting physio in the community and shortly after they began her treatment. Five weeks later, Stella was discharged and returned to Lofthouse, where she continued with her exercises and therapy. Her positive outlook soon came back and she was delighted to see her fellow residents when she arrived

at the home. She was assisted with help to keep her mobile until she was able to walk into the dining room to all her friends, with both staff and residents brought to tears by her grand entrance. Whilst living at Lofthouse, one of Orchard Care Homes residences, Stella has worked continuously with the staff to keep her active and improving. Home Manager, Marsha Tuffin, commented on Stella’s progress and said “She has come on leaps and bounds during her time at Lofthouse. Four years ago, we welcomed a different Stella who wasn’t able to walk at all but her determination, motivation and perseverance since starting physio has shocked and inspired us all.”

Well Pharmacy Partners with The Access Group to Support the Delivery of Outstanding Care Well Pharmacy, the UK’s largest independent pharmacy chain, is delighted to announce a new partnership with The Access Group, the largest provider of software to UK care and nursing homes, designed to support the delivery of outstanding care. This partnership will highlight Access’ innovative Medication Management solution, which has already been successfully implemented in a number of care homes serviced by Well Pharmacy. Access Medication Management is the UK’s most widely used eMAR system and is proven to reduce medication errors and make manual time-consuming processes like ordering medication and stock checking much more accurate and efficient. Cited in CQC reports as helping clients achieve ‘Good’ to ‘Outstanding’ ratings, Medication Management is a quick and efficient way to introduce technology and help ensure residents safety. Access Medication Management offers everything care home organisations need to support patient safety including all equipment, installation, training and technical support. They also provide the full range of solutions needed for care homes to transition to fully digital care provision. Key benefits of Access’ Medication Management solution:

Access’ market leading electronic care planning system gives care and nursing homes a unified record of both medication and care notes/activities. Full integration with Well Pharmacy making data transfer more efficient and improving communication between the local pharmacy and home. Reduction in medication errors using pro-active alerts, alarms and best practice workflows to make sure medication compliance and safety for residents. Greater visibility and compliance - provides all staff and management with a clear picture of medication administration. Ben Smith, Care Homes Sales Manager for Well Pharmacy said: “We are pleased to highlight Access’ Medication Management solution to over 350 care homes we serve across the UK. At Well Pharmacy we are always looking for new ways to help and support our care home

customers. Patient and resident safety is our number one priority and we’re pleased to be working with The Access Group offer new solutions to give residents the best possible care.” Steve Sawyer, Managing Director, Access Group’s Health and Social Care Division said: “At Access, we pride ourselves on supporting care staff to provide the highest quality of care to their residents. Access Medication Management reduces the risk of medication errors, while giving everyone in a care home more time back to interact with residents or focus on work that will improve care, capacity, and occupancy at their homes. We're proud to be working with one of the largest pharmacy chains in the UK, who share our vision of using software in health and social care, to better manage all medication processes, encouraging fellow organisations so that this becomes a standard way of working across all UK care homes.” For more information, about Well Pharmacy’s Care Home Service please contact: carehomes@well.co.uk For more information about Access’ Medication Management software visit: https://www.theaccessgroup.com/health-socialcare/care-management-software/medication-management/

Belong Chester One Step Closer To Completion Belong Chester, the new care village set to open on City Road, has celebrated a key milestone with a topping out ceremony, marking the completion of the main building works and another step towards its scheduled opening in early 2022. Guest of honour, Robert Mee DL, the High Sheriff of Cheshire, braved the heights of the £21 million state-of-the-art development to lay the final roof tile alongside former Belong Chair, Margaret Yorke; Belong’s deputy chief executive, Tracy Paine, and Chris Ellison, the project manager for the site from contractor, Seddon. Commenting on the landmark step, Belong’s Tracy Paine commented: “We are thrilled to have finished the main building work at Belong Chester. We know the village’s opening is eagerly anticipated and we look forward to welcoming the community early next year and to being able to support local older people, including

those living with dementia and their families.” John Shannon, divisional director at Seddon, added: “It’s great to see the scheme progressing and we were delighted to have some of the Belong team join us on site to mark this milestone. The next stage will see the village come to life even further and transform into the highly-anticipated vibrant space the people of Chester have been waiting for.” He said: “The creation of a Belong village in the heart of the city promises to expand the provision of high quality services for older people in the area, and it was wonderful to have this opportunity to see the rapid progress being made towards completion.”



PAGE 28 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL

Seconds Save Lives: Clean Your Hands Skin and surface hygiene specialist, GOJO Industries-Europe Ltd, supports the WHO’s annual ‘Save Lives: Clean Your Hands’ campaign

Skin health and surface hygiene expert, GOJO Industries-Europe, is proud to be part of the global movement to improve hand hygiene and is once again supporting the World Health Organization’s annual ‘SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands’ campaign. Its worldwide advocacy day falls on 5th May, and this year it is focused on achieving appropriate hand hygiene action at the point of care. Its ‘seconds save lives – clean your hands!’ slogan reinforces the message that taking a little extra time to practise hand hygiene makes all the difference. To achieve this, healthcare workers should have access to good-quality alcohol-based hand rub products, clean water, soap, single-use towels and an adequate number of functioning sinks within patient zones. This enables hand hygiene practise at the five key moments: before touching a patient, before clean/aseptic procedures, after body fluid exposure/risk, after touching a patient, and after touching a patient’s surroundings. 2021 has also been designated the ‘International Year of Health and Care Workers’, so focusing on their protection is just as crucial. The PURELL brand’s focus on ‘formulation without compromise’ means that products in the range have been proven to maintain skin health and have high antimicrobial efficacy. In fact, in scientific tests, PURELL Advanced Hygienic Hand Rub was found to kill 99.99% of the most common germs that may be harmful, including Coronavirus, with a contact time of just 30 seconds. Chris Wakefield, Managing Director UK & Ireland, GOJO IndustriesEurope Ltd comments, ‘As a founder member of the WHO Private

Organizations for Patient Safety group, we are strong advocates of making hand hygiene second nature to everyone – this past year has shown how this is more important than ever. We hope that this year’s campaign encourages everyone to do their part, as it takes commitment from all for

hand hygiene programmes to be successful. ‘We strongly encourage everyone in the healthcare industry to unite in support of hand hygiene improvement. As well as healthcare workers cleaning their hands, IPC practitioners need to continue mentoring and championing the act, facility managers must ensure that supplies are available at every point of care, and policy makers should invest now to enable hand hygiene for all. Everyone, the general public included, must make clean hands a habit. It protects us all.’ Backed by a wealth of scientific expertise, and specialist formulations, GOJO has the technology and experience to work in partnership with healthcare managers to implement effective hand and surface hygiene regimes, and promote hygienic and compliant hand hygiene behaviour. Assets, such as posters and product placement guides are available to download from GOJO’s dedicated ‘Hand Hygiene Day’ page at www.gojo.com/WHO-May-5 from mid-April. Free advocacy toolkits to support the WHO Save Lives: Clean Your Hands campaign are available on the WHO website: http://www.who.int/infection-prevention/campaigns/clean-hands/en/ WHO invites everyone to use the hashtags #CleanYourHands #HandHygiene #InfectionPrevention on social media to ensure Save Lives: Clean Your Hands posts are picked up by the campaign. For more information, call +44 (0)1908 588444, email infouk@GOJO.com or visit www.GOJO.com

Take Maximum Control of Washroom Hygiene, Efficiency and Sustainability New from Kimberly-Clark Professional is the Scott® ControlTM Mini Twin Centrefeed Toilet Tissue system designed to deliver maximum hygiene, efficiency and sustainability in healthcare and hospital washrooms. Just launched, the new dispenser is the most hygienic in the marketplace1 and is the highest capacity centrefeed toilet tissue system available. Launched as part of the Kimberly-Clark Professional 360 Hygiene & Protection programme, the new twin system provides the healthcare sector with optimum hygiene, with a one-wipe-clean dispenser that is designed with no shut lines or key holes. “In the healthcare sector, hygiene plus the safety and wellbeing of staff and patients, is the highest priority as it copes with the ongoing pandemic,” says Richard Millard, EMEA Senior Category Manager, Bath Tissue, Kimberly-Clark Professional. “The pressure on Healthcare Facility Managers and cleaning staff to deliver hygiene without compromising efficiency is higher than ever. This system is designed to reduce hygiene risks and refill events, enabling cleaning staff to be deployed to other more critical hygiene duties.” Designed with fully enclosed, protected rolls for touchless dispensing, the new system avoids cross contamination as users only touch the sheet to be used. Controlled single sheet dispensing reduces paper usage for exceptional cost in use and maximum efficiency. A never-run-out twin design delivers 100% tissue availability and reduces the need for refills for improved efficiency of staff and provides guaranteed dispensing reliability – every time.2 Fewer refills means less chance for cross contamination keeping staff, patients and visitors safe and confident that facilities are well stocked and managed for their comfort and convenience. The most hygienic and highest capacity toilet tissue system ever from Kimberly-Clark Professional, the Scott® ControlTM Twin Centrefeed Toilet Tissue System is ideal for busy washrooms in high footfall environments. It has 1,666 sheets and a total of 408 metres of tissue per fully loaded dispenser which means it has 82% more metres and 426 more sheets than other twin centrefeed systems. A full dispenser provides sufficient tissue for a huge 408 visits versus typically just 72 visits with a competitive

single bulk pack folded toilet tissue system. Compared with uncontrolled, toilet tissue systems, the new twin centrefeed dispenser provides up to 378 more visits than a small roll toilet tissue and up to 285 more visits than a 2x200 metre competitive jumbo toilet roll. “Using a controlled toilet tissue system is the future for delivering maximum efficiency. The wastage generated from jumbo roll and small roll formats makes them not the preferred choice for high traffic environments”, adds Richard Millard. In today’s world, hospital and healthcare facilities must ensure that heightened hygiene risks are managed with no concessions for efficiencies and sustainability targets. Meeting sustainability KPI’s is crucial for Healthcare Facility Managers with responsible and recycled products increasingly in demand. Meeting such a demand, the new Scott® Control™ Twin Centrefeed Toilet Tissue is produced from 100% recycled FSC certified fibre, with roll packaging also 30% recycled and 100% recyclable. Additionally, the controlled dispensing of the new system reduces paper use and reduces the need for storage and transportation of supplies. Washroom waste is avoided with this highest capacity system which has a roll change indicator to alert staff when supply is running low. Domestic Managers need worry less about the hygiene and maintenance headaches of toilet blockages. The Scott® branded quality toilet tissue has excellent paper disintegration avoiding disruptive blockages. “The Scott® Control™ range offers a complete washroom solution for the hospital and healthcare sector, delivering increased hygiene without compromising on washroom efficiency or sustainability,” adds Richard Millard. “As with all our washroom systems, the Scott® ControlTM Twin Centrefeed Toilet Tissue system delivers unmatched market leading hygiene and efficiencies, so our customers can provide facilities that support the safety, health and wellbeing of staff, patients and visitors during these challenging times now and uncertain ones ahead.” To register your interest for a trial or find out more, visit https://home.kcprofessional.com/uk/scottTwin To see the system in action, watch our video here https://youtu.be/D1re4N1Bc_E

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

Haigh Engineering Resident and patient waste is a day to day practical matter that simply cannot become a problem for frontline carers and nursing staff. With the raised awareness of cross infection risks, the proven reliable waste disposal systems from Haigh are recognised more than ever as being a key part of the toolkit for ensuring that human waste is effectively and efficiently removed as a source of risk, day in day out, without the risks and complications of either washing pots or manual bagging waste for collection. The team from Haigh have been working hard to support this beyond just the manufacture of the Incomaster and Quattro waste disposers here in the UK, but also developing innovative and safe

silver ion technology and which is exclusive to Angloplas. This helps reduce the risk of cross infection by stopping the growth of bacteria and mould and works continuously for the lifetime of the product, reducing levels of bacteria such as MRSA, E Coli, Legionella, Salmonella and mould by up to 99.99%. For non-clinical environments Angloplas has recently launched its new Budget Range of products which are made to the same exacting standards as the antimicrobial protected ones but with lower price tags. You can order Angloplas products directly from its website by going to www.angloplas.co.uk and clicking Hospital, Health and Hygiene or by using the Quick Response code.

methods to enhance the servicing provisions that are available to customers. The recently launched allinclusive rental proposition has proven particularly effective and popular with new and existing customers alike, not least as it reduces the operational, maintenance and financing headaches from sites which have more critical matters to address. For more information about incontinence and bedpan waste disposal please feel free to contact the Haigh team on 01989 763131 or info@haigh.co.uk

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 29

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL CleanRite, Proves Efficacy of Hypochlorous Against SARS-CoV-2 to Offer New Generation of Alcohol-Free Sanitisers Launching in the UK CleanRite sanitisers, a new dermatologically advanced solution to keeping surfaces and hands guarded against COVID-19 is launching in the UK in April 2021. CleanRite is a new generation disinfectant range to ensure surfaces, the air in areas such as care homes, as well as hands - are all protected from the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

THE ‘WONDER’ OF HYPOCHLOROUS The CleanRite range of sanitising products are Hypochlorous-based (HOCl) which is an anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial solution, proven to kill 99.9% of germs on contact. Specifically, Hypochlorous has been proven effective against SARS-CoV-2 in an independent lab test carried out by Richard Stanton, a Reader in Division of Infection & Immunity at the School of Medicine at Cardiff University. Fully regulated and child-friendly, CleanRite, which dries quickly and leaves no sticky residue, is perfect for use in care homes - as well as being dermatologically tested and suitable for use from birth. Caroline Fogarty, Managing Director, CF Pharma, said, “In laboratory tests we were able to show that the Hypochlorous ingredient in CleanRite killed the SARS-CoV-2 virus within 30 seconds. Hypochlorous is a ‘wonder’ ingredient because not only is it free of alcohol and harmful chemicals, it is hypoallergenic and skin friendly. It is as natural as water and doesn’t need to be rinsed off. So not only is it people-friendly, but it is planet-friendly too. “I believe that Hypochlorous is the future of everyday sanitisation. As we learn to live with the need for heightened sanitisation even after lockdown is eased, choosing something that is gentle on your skin, eyes, lungs and even the environment makes CleanRite ideal for long-term usage.”

CLEANRITE – BOTH POWERFUL AND SAFE CleanRite is an alcohol-free hypoallergenic sanitiser. It is highly effective without dehydrating, irritating, stinging or damaging skin or eyes making it perfect for all skin types, including sensitive skin. CleanRite is highly effective on multiple surfaces and equipment including kitchen worktops (since it is food safe). And unlike most alcohol-based products, CleanRite is non-flammable. Clare Hughes (MPSI BSc PHARM), Founder, CF Pharma said, “The advanced CleanRite formulation based on Hypochlorous, makes this ‘nature’s powerful disinfectant’. Indeed, Hypochlorous, which is produced naturally by the body’s white blood cells to support the human immune system in fighting infection and bacteria, has been used in wound-healing for decades.” Caroline Fogarty said, “It looks like we are going to be living with the need for increased sanitisation for some considerable time. So being able to offer a sanitisation range that has a skin friendly pH for family use, from birth, makes CleanRite an essential tool for everyone as we navigate the new normal.”

AVAILABILITY CleanRite is manufactured in various sizes from 60ml to 4500ml with convenient 60ml and 150ml finger sprays for travel available, which are for sale on Amazon For further information, to view the full range of products or to place an order for your business, visit CleanRite CF Pharma http://cleanrite.ie

Fellowes Aeramax Pro Air Purifiers Certified to Remove 99.9% of Airborne Coronavirus and H1N1 Flu Leading commercial air purification manufacturer, Fellowes, is pleased to announce its AeraMax Pro air purifiers have shown a 99.99% airborne reduction of a coronavirus surrogate within 60 minutes of operation. With the recent, intensified focus on the reduction of airborne transmission of viruses, a number of worldwide bodies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ASHRAE, as well as ‘healthy building’ scientific advocates, have recommended that portable air cleaners using HEPA filtration can help in the protection against SARS-Cov-2. This is particularly key for settings such as care homes, where occupants have an increased level of vulnerability to the spread of disease and therefore require this additional protection. In response to this, air purification expert, Fellowes recently arranged for its AeraMax Pro purifier, which has a four-stage TRUE HEPA filtration system, to be independently tested for efficacy in the reduction of two of the most healththreatening airborne-transmitted contaminants seen in recent times – coronavirus and the H1N1 virus.

UK Care Homes Use Groundbreaking Health Technology to Maintain Clean Air and Surfaces

Care home owners have been among the first customers to purchase air and surface sterilisation products from Medklinn, the international health technology company, which recently launched in the UK. Following confirmation from scientists from Fujita Health University in Japan, that low concentrations of ozone gas can be used to neutralise coronavirus particles without causing harm to humans, UK care homes have an alternative method to sterilise the air and surfaces in their premises without the use of chemicals. According to the university research, low-level ozone gas in concentrations of 0.05 to 1.0 parts per million (ppm) could be key to neutralising the spread of coronavirus in healthcare settings such as examination rooms and waiting areas. Medklinn International, the health technology company that has pioneered research and development into negative ionisation and ozone in the sterilisation process, already provides air and surface sterilisation solutions in ASIA, the USA, Canada, Australia and Germany. Now the business has launched in the UK. Daniel Lu, chief technology and innovation officer of Medklinn International, said: “We are pleased to be bringing our health technology to the UK. The announcement from the team at Fujita Health University in Japan further demonstrates that ozone sterilisation technology is a viable alternative to the use

of chemicals for disinfection.” In addition to the latest breakthrough in neutralising coronavirus particles, Medklinn products are also proven to be effective in: • Killing 99.9% of harmful microorganisms such as viruses and bacteria, mould and fungi by destroying their RNA and DNA structure • Eliminating volatile organic compounds (VOCs), including those with adverse health effects • Neutralising allergenic organic compounds such as pet dander and the protein in the faeces of dust mites, which are often the cause of allergies Steve Jones, Brand Manager Medklinn UK, said: “We’re really excited to be launching Medklinn UK. Our products are already used by some of the leading global brands in the healthcare, travel and tourism, retail, education, F&B and hospitality sectors, including Hyatt, Mandarin Oriental and Singapore’s Changi Airport. We believe that they will be particularly useful as we make gradual steps towards easing restrictions and reopening the UK following the lockdowns over the past 12 months.” Medklinn UK offers a consumer range of products suitable for the home and for use in vehicles. It also offers a range of air and surface sterilisers designed for business use including: • Permanent units for spaces up to 1,000 sq ft such as hotel guest rooms, washrooms, offices and classrooms • Permanent units for large spaces of 3,000 sq ft or more such as hotel corridors, washrooms, restaurants, halls, offices, exhibition centres, supermarkets, food processing and manufacturing plants • Portable units for ad hoc treatments of indoor odours recommended for hotel guest rooms, restaurants and facilities management It will also offer ozone water systems (for washrooms, industrial kitchens, food processing factories) and integrated sterilisation systems (for public washrooms, food processing and F&B outlets and supermarkets). For further information about Medklinn UK please visit uk.medklinn.com or contact medklinn@tunnelight.net.

Certified by Shanghai WEIPU Chemical Technology Service Company, Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifiers demonstrated effectiveness in reducing the aerosolised airborne concentration of Human Coronavirus 229E in a test chamber, reaching 99.99% airborne reduction within one hour of operation. As it is not yet possible, or ethically responsible to aerosolise Sars-CoV-2 for airborne testing in the current climate, the coronavirus 229E was used as a surrogate to SarsCoV-2. Furthermore, AeraMax Pro air purifiers have also been proven to remove 99.9% of the H1N1 virus within 35 minutes of operation, as certified by Airmid Health Group Limited in Dublin, Ireland. When installed in a care home environment, AeraMax Pro therefore offers outstanding protection against the transmission of coronavirus 229E and the H1N1 virus between staff, visitors and vulnerable residents. For more information about Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifiers, visit www.aeramaxpro.com/uk


PAGE 30 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

CATERING FOR CARE

Foods to Ease Home Visits

By Jane Clarke BSc (Hons) SRD DSc, Dietitian and founder of www.nourishbyjaneclarke.com

The new Government guidance that residents can leave care settings to visit their families at home is much welcomed, as we know how difficult these past months of separation have been for so many and the impact it has had on health and wellbeing. But we mustn’t forget that this sudden immersion into a new environment may be unsettling for anyone used to the familiar routine and steady rhythm of their care home. Relatives, too, may worry about what food and drink to give their loved one, particularly if they have an eating challenge they know is well catered for in their care setting. The following tips will help take the pressure off a home visit. Do share them with relatives to help give them more confidence, so they can focus on the pleasure of having their loved one with them again. Pack a lunch Provide a small lunch with familiar foods you know a resident is happy to eat. The ideal is that they will be able to share a meal or snack with their loved ones, but this is a useful standby if they’d prefer their usual foods and means they won’t go hungry and run out of energy on their day out. Discuss the menu in advance It can be disappointing for everyone if a much-anticipated meal goes uneaten. Chat with relatives and highlight any eating challenges their loved one may have, then you can discuss ways a meal might be adapted to make it easier to swallow, for example.

Remember to pack any adapted cutlery or tableware they prefer to eat with. Go for a picnic Sitting down to a big meal at the dinner table and being served a plateful of food can feel overwhelming for someone used to eating in the dining room in their care setting, or even on a tray in their room. A picnic or buffet can be less pressure, allowing them to pick and choose their preferred options in smaller portions. You may find they actually eat more this way, as they graze the tempting tastes on offer. Just be sure that the foods are those everyone can enjoy – cut crusts off finger sandwiches if chewing is difficult; watch out for ingredients that may cause choking, such as nuts; and include protein-rich foods such as hummus and mackerel pate, plus chopped salads and fresh fruit, for a balanced plate of nourishment. Stroll down memory lane With loved ones who have a poor appetite, or whose eating may be affected by a condition such as dementia, rekindling memories of favourite dishes or special family occasions can help to tempt the appetite. Bring out photographs and recipe books (especially handwritten recipes handed down through generations), talk about foods you remember them loving and incorporate familiar tastes and ingredients in the dishes served. Don’t forget drinks Staying hydrated is very important, as lack of fluids will result in loss of energy, poor digestion and potentially cause constipation and even confusion once the visit is over. Ask relatives or friends to offer beverages and ensure they have any straw or special cup the individual may need to help them drink. Having one or two meal supplement drinks on hand, such as my all-natural Nourish Drinks, is a great way to guarantee both nourishment and hydration on a day out.

leaves from 2 fresh basil sprigs 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra if necessary juice of half a lemon ground black pepper Method 1. Steam the broad beans for 2 minutes until they’re cooked but not mushy. 2. Rinse and cool thoroughly under cold water and remove the skins by squeezing the bean at one end – the bright green centre should just pop out. 3.Toast the pistachio nuts in a dry pan for 2 minutes over a gentle heat, being careful not to let them burn. 4.Put them into a food processor or blender and blend to a fine nut powder. 5.Add the beans and the basil, oil and lemon juice, and whiz to a mash. 6.You can add a little extra oil or lemon juice, if you like, depending on how smooth and tart you want the hummus to be. 7.Season with pepper. TIP Serve as a sandwich filling, or on jacket potatoes or pasta. Or make a delicious salad with romaine lettuce leaves, new crisp baby carrots and sliced raw vegetables, which you can dunk into the hummus.

SMOKED TROUT & DILL PÂTÉ Trout is very rich in omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which benefit heart and circulatory health. This pate is fabulous slathered on toast or used as a dip with crudités. PREP TIME: 10 MINUTES Ingredients 400g smoked trout fillet 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard pinch of freshly ground black pepper 100g ricotta cheese or cream cheese 100ml crème fraîche

BROAD BEAN & PISTACHIO HUMMUS Hummus is a real favourite for a picnic tea. While the traditional chickpeabased hummus is delicious, broad beans feel lighter on the gut and the pistachios provide a great source of protein. PREP TIME: ABOUT 5 MINUTES COOKING TIME: ABOUT 5 MINUTES SERVES: 4 Ingredients 1kg (2¼ lb) frozen broad beans 2 tbsp shelled pistachio nuts

juice of 1 lemon large handful of dill Method 1. Remove the skin from the trout fillets and check that there are no remaining bones. 2. Place in a food processor with the mustard, black pepper, ricotta, crème fraîche and lemon juice and process until smooth. If you don’t have a food processor, you can mash with a fork, but the consistency won’t be as smooth. 3.Adjust the seasoning to taste and serve.

Are You in Need of Dysphagia Training ? *

*This training is intended for healthcare professionals only.

Did you know that between 50-75% of nursing home residents suffer from dysphagia1? Nutricia has a training solution for you, a FREE e-learning covering the fundamentals of dysphagia management using Nutilis Clear. The training is divided into 4 sections and has been specially designed for busy health and social care staff caring for people living with dysphagia. It takes 60 minutes in total to complete, however you can complete one section at a time.

HOW CAN THIS TRAINING HELP YOU? • Easy & convenient online solution to dysphagia training • Visibility to track progress in your care home • Raise the quality standard of dysphagia care in a consistent way The quality standards aim is for all new health and social care staff members caring for patients with Dysphagia to complete the modules as part of their induction pro-

gramme. 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-language-therapy/clinical-information/dysphagia)

Dysphagia Call to Action

By Sophie Murray, Head of Nutrition and Hydration, Sunrise Senior Living (www.sunrise-care.co.uk)

In the industry we know that the numbers are rising for those who have swallowing problems and the skills required to modify foods are greatly needed in some sites as catering staff need much more than an ability to use a blender to break food down. This is as a result of the safety framework which ,many of us know called IDDSI, standing for International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative which has been built upon research of swallowing to be able to give very precise levels which comprise of very specific food and drink test to deduce if it is safe for the Level. Most foods can be modified but not all and the modification process requires equipment, techniques and knowledge. As foods themselves vary in texture, it is not as simple as adapting a recipe – a banana or an avocado are 2 examples of foods which can vary greatly in their ability to be soft enough to push a fork through with little pressure, and other foods such as white fish do not blend smoothly to a puree so may need to be replaced with an oily fish for a person who requires a pureed diet There are publicised cases of fatalities such as in 2017

when a care home was prosecuted and closed by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), after a resident choked on porridge twice in one day and died. Protocols and processes between care and catering teams needs to be watertight so that only those trained correctly modify the foods and this includes all snacks too – careful management to ensure safety as well as choice are prime considerations – in itself this has challenges as a persons may have recommendations for Care homes seeking to buy in ready modified food need to ensure that this matches the menu properly and meets needs and choices so that there aren’t There IS only one qualification that can formally train and accredit Chefs called the Level 2 Award for Chefs in Healthcare but there are few providers offering this due to poor uptake and awareness https://www.cthawards.com/qualifications/culinary-programmes/cth-ioh-level-2-specialist-award-chefs-healthsocial-care/ There is also a framework for care teams called the Inter-

professional Dysphagia Framework (IDF) which sets out the knowledge and skills care staff require to do safely care for a person with swallowing problems. The IDF should be implemented in every care home to ensure residents receive safe and effective care but in reality care homes don’t all know about it and it needs translating to a workable process with solid training although it is written with good clarity. Speech and Language Therapists are a great source of knowledge and support for care teams as they are the identified professionals who can diagnose a swallowing condition and recommend appropriate IDDSI Levels. IDDSI has set up a UK reference group so that best practice can be shared across the UK and organisations such as the NACC can provide support to care homes needing traning and awareness When risks are fatalities as a result of poor practice, there is much to do to ensure amazing food and choice is offered and residents are safe from harm as a result of choking or aspiration. The high risk is choking and aspiration.



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CATERING FOR CARE Activities & Ideas For Your Vegetarian Care Home Residents Charity Vegetarian for Life (VfL) has plenty of inspiring ideas to help you cater for your vegetarian or vegan (veg*n) residents and celebrate their lifestyle choice. Even if you don’t have veg*n residents at present, it's always a good time to introduce new foods. You’ll likely find your residents are happy to try some meat-free options.

Here are VfL’s top tips: Host a vegetarian supper club, planning and serving a three-course meal. Here’s a suggested menu: Starter: Carrot, Ginger & Orange Soup (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/recip es/budget-recipes/carrot-gingerand-orange-soup) Main: Mushroom, Nut & Cranberry Wellington (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/recipes/main-meals/mushroom-nut-cranberrywellington) Dessert: Sticky Toffee Pudding (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/recipes/cakes-and-puddings/sticky-toffee-pudding) Run a veg*n food tasting session: e.g. vegan ice cream, vegan cheese, plant milks, faux meat products, tofu, or hummus and veggie dips. You could even make score cards and pick a winner at the end. Experiment with more unusual ingredients, such as banana blossom ‘fish’, or jackfruit curry. You might even use silken tofu to make a mousse, quiche, or scrambled tofu. Play ‘guess the ingredient’ first, and let residents suggest what you might make with it – a great way to start discussions and share experiences. It’s also a good sensory activity because people can see, touch, smell and taste the different foods. If the weather is good, why not host a vegetarian picnic or BBQ? Here are some recipe ideas: Black Bean Burger (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/recipes/main-meals/black-bean-burger) Sandwich Platter (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/recipes/soups-and-sandwiches/sandwich-platter) Coronation Chicken Pastries (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/recipes/lighter-meals/coronation-chicken-pastries)

Whether vegetarian or not, many people have a favourite meal that just happens to be meat-free. Those that do consider themselves veg*n will likely enjoy being able to reminisce and share why they follow this lifestyle. Print photos of common vegetarian products from years gone by or find old vegetarian cookbooks to encourage conversation. Here’s an example of some products that one older vegetarian misses. Visit VfL’s website (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk) for some suggested questions/conversation starters. Invite a VfL chef to deliver a virtual or in-person cookery demo for your residents. They’ll take the pressure off your chefs and activity co-ordinators, and deliver a themed demo for you. Here’s what recent participants have said: “It was brilliant, well presented, and the demonstrator was very likeable and did a great job.” “I’ve taken part in lots of video cook-alongs recently and have found them quite stressful. However, this one was really informative and easy to follow.” For a novel activity for residents, VfL runs a ‘virtual vegan lunch club’ on the fourth Tuesday of every month. It’s open to vegetarians, vegans and meat reducers, aged 65+. Recipes are sent in advance. Buy your ingredients, and cook the dishes on the day ready for the Zoom chat at 1pm. Talk cookery, recipes and more, and meet likeminded people from across the UK. For residents that are less tech savvy, but keen to connect, VfL runs a veggie pen- and phone-pals scheme (https://vegetarianforlife.org.uk/pages/pen-andphone-pal-scheme). The scheme has linked tens of like-minded people from across the UK, and many lasting friendships have been forged. One member said: “I love it, I really do. It’s the best thing I’ve done in a long, long time. I speak to a few people from the scheme and I’m delighted with how well it’s going” Caterers can get ahead of the curve with VfL’s accredited training. Topics include what veg*ns eat; plant-based nutrition and fortification; meal planning; and alternatives to meat and dairy. Each bite-sized module includes easy-to-follow recipe videos and fantastic, tasty recipes. What’s more, it’s British Dietetic Association accredited.

Carrot, Ginger and Orange Soup

Serves: 4 Dietary requirements: Dairy-free, Egg-free, Halal, Kosher, Vegan Ingredients Good glug of olive oil 4 small onions, chopped 4 garlic cloves, chopped 2–3 inch piece of fresh ginger, finely grated Zest and juice of 2 oranges 8 carrots, peeled and sliced 1 litre water with vegan stock or 4 tsp vegetable bouillon Couple of pinches of cayenne pepper or chilli powder (optional) Sea salt and pepper to taste To serve Coconut yoghurt or vegan crème fraiche (optional) Chopped coriander leaves Instructions • In a saucepan, gently cook the onion in the olive oil until softened. • Add the garlic, ginger and orange zest. Cook for a minute or so and then add the carrots, stock, and cayenne pepper or chilli powder (if using). • Simmer until the carrots are tender. • Using a hand blender, blend the soup until smooth. • Add the orange juice and season with salt and pepper. Blend again briefly to mix. • Reheat gently. Serve with optional dollop of coconut yoghurt or crème fraiche, and a sprinkle of chopped coriander on top.

LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS Forbes Delivers a Streamlined Solution for National Care Groups A national care group needs to know that they are delivering a consistently high standard of care and in order to do this they need to ensure that they are working with service partners that they can trust. When it comes to laundry provision, centralised procurement and management teams want to know that they will have access to a streamlined process for all on-going account and service management. Forbes Professional offers a nationwide delivery of a localbased service, with the security and reliability that comes from being a long-established company. Our expansive network of depots and field engineers enables a highly responsive service and maintenance response, which is mobilised via a dedicated hotline at our head office. We work closely with clients to devise the solution best suited to their requirements; conducting comprehensive site-surveys, offering detailed CAD designs and always specifying the most

appropriate, industry compliant machines. We choose our manufacturers extremely carefully to ensure that we are offering the highest quality of both product and service. For the care sector, hygiene is always of paramount importance and our commercial laundry equipment fully adheres to the relevant WRAS and CQC guidelines for infection control. All of our laundry equipment is available for rent, lease or purchase with maintenance. Our Complete Care rental solution gives access to premium equipment without upfront capital outlay and with no repair or replacement bills for the life of the contract. National care groups are always assigned a dedicated account manager who remains their point of contact, centralising all account management for a highly efficient process that keeps things simple for both procurement teams and care management staff. www.forbespro.co.uk info@forbes-professional.co.uk 0345 070 2335

Cash’s Labels- “The Name Behind the Name”

At Cash's, we aim to capture, reinforce and communicate our clients’ brand equity through quality and innovation, from design to distribution. Our product range fully caters for the needs of both small and large retailers and brand owners alike comprising of woven and printed labels, woven badges, care labels, branded and promotional swing tags, garment accessories, packaging and barcoding. Our ground breaking labelling and security technologies are also able to provide an unrivalled level of protec-

tion to our customers' brand by assisting to combat counterfeiting and grey market activity. Our industry leading eCommerce system is designed to reduce cost, improve efficiency and streamline supply chain management and will fully protect the integrity and accuracy of critical business data. The order entry process is very simple meaning suppliers and vendors can spend their valuable time on tasks other than ordering apparel labelling and accessories. See the advert this page for details.



PAGE 34 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

PRODUCTS AND SERVICES Burlington Uniforms Burlington Uniforms are proud to provide healthcare uniforms to a variety of Healthcare professionals. With our friendly, dedicated Team always ready to help, their combined wealth of knowledge within the Healthcare sector covers everything from your first enquiry right through to managing your account after despatch and beyond. Supplying high quality garments to our customers is our passion, in an array of colours and sizes, our extensive healthacre ranges can provide everything you need, making us your one stop shop. We can also take care of personalisation through our talented embroidery team, giving you a final look you'll be proud of.

We can cater to the public and private healthcare sectors, so our collection of healthcare uniforms has been expertly designed with all medical settings in mind. Offering comfortable scrubs, dresses, tunics and coordinated trousers, our medical workwear is suited to every area of your industry. Designed for comfort and flexability, these garments ensure staff enjoy ease of movement and are unrestricted throughout their shifts. Besides our extensive stock service, our experience in manurfacturing and our wealth of textile expertise allows us to also provide end to end bespoke solutions for our customers, contact us for more details about working with us on bespoke requirements. Call 08707 300 150 Sales@burlington-uniforms.co.uk www.burlington-uniforms.co.uk See the advert on page 11.

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. Visit www.yeomanshield.com for details.

Mendabath UK uses high quality bath resurfacing and bathroom repair products that are trusted all over the world. Aligned with our expertise, we offer a service that is simply unparalleled in the UK. Our experienced team is comprised of experts that will deliver a service that will exceed your expectations. From minor cosmetic repairs to bringing an old bath back to life, we can restore any suite. We offer resurfacing and repair services for baths, sinks and showers for care homes, private residences and commercial properties across the UK. Commercial bath repairs and resurfacing Discoloured and damaged baths can be resurfaced with a turnaround time of just twenty four hours, keeping lost occupancy days to a minimum. This is more environmentally friendly than replacing your bath and will save you both time and money. Slip resistant application We apply slip resistance the day

after the bath or shower tray resurfacing. This works well in busy hotels, where there is a strong duty of care to customers yet time is of the essence. For this process the room will be out of commission for a further twenty four hours while the surface cures and hardens. Basin repairs and resurfacing We can repair and resurface cracked, stained and chipped basins, making them look new again. Cosmetic bath and basin repairs Sanitary ware with minor chips and scratches can be cosmetically repaired. Our technicians fade-in each repair so that they are almost invisible to the naked eye. Shower repairs and shower tray resurfacing We can fully restore any stained and cracked shower tray, giving it a fresh, new look. See the advert on page 9 or visit www.mendabath.co.uk

CareZips Dignity Trousers Bath Resurfacing and Chip Repair ™

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 noniron, the CareZips™ trousers are the perfect choice for daily use. Contact Win Health Medical Ltd - 01835 864866 www.win-health.com

Spotta’s Early Warning System Prevents Bed Bug Infestations Smart pest monitoring system marks one year of real-world operations, detecting bed bugs in 94.2% of cases

In its first year of operation, Spotta’s monitoring and detection system identified bed bugs in 94.2% of cases, significantly reducing the number of encounters between bed bugs and residents in multi-room properties. The ‘always-on’ monitoring service uses advanced recognition technology to identify insects and provide real time alerts. Spotta enables multi-room properties such as sheltered and residential housing accommodation and their pest control partners to identify occurrences of bed bugs and treat the problem early, limiting the damage caused and spread of the pests. In its first year of real-world deployment in customer properties Spotta serviced over 91,000 room nights. Of

the detections made by Spotta, over half (52.2%) were in rooms with no recent history of bed bugs, proving the system’s effectiveness as an early warning against new infestations. Repeat detections in rooms help property managers assess whether extermination treatments are successful or if further, more extensive treatment is needed. “For accommodation providers, most of the overall financial impact of bed bugs comes from contact between the occupant and pests, which leads to complaints, disruption and high treatment costs,” says Robert Fryers, co-founder and CEO of Spotta. During the Bed Pod’s first year, 94.2% of cases were successfully detected by Spotta, with room residents reporting bed bugs accounting for just 3.3% of cases and staff identifying the remaining 2.5%. Fryers continues: “The first year results of Bed Pod show we have a credible, proven solution with realworld efficacy. This represents a transformative step for pest controllers, accommodation providers and property managers by allowing them to proactively monitor for bed bugs, rather than just reacting when problems are reported.” Find out more at www.spotta.co See the advert on page 15.

Jolly Trolley Brings Therapeutic Activity and Entertainment to Patients That Are Isolating The Jolly Trolley® is an essential for any care establishment as it promotes social interaction between the service users and their carers. This innovative system is fully mobile and battery operated, allowing residents who may be unable to leave their rooms to also be included with ease. The Jolly Trolley® comes complete with its own videos, quizzes, karaoke and other content, but personal music, photos and films can then be added from a USB stick to really bring out the magic! Don’t just take our word for it here are just some testimonials from our very happy Health and Social Care clients:

Chester Park- Megan Allan, Activities “The fact that we can upload what is relevant to the specific Individual is so meaningful for that person and I can assure you we have shed some tears being able to be part of that residents memory journey. It has been an amazing addition to our care home – from staff and residents – thank you.” Pennine NHS Trust - Beech Ward“we have been able to provide therapeutic activity & entertainment with ease to patients that are isolating” To see what the Jolly Trolley® can do for you, call us for a free demonstration on 0800 093 8499. See the advert on page 6.

Adaptawear Iona Nightie: Full Opening-Back Nightie Ideal for those bed-ridden, struggling with mobility or needing palliative end of life care - the Iona nightie from adaptawear.com has been specifically designed with these people in mind. This unique product comes with a fully opening back, shoulder openings on both sides, and easy poppers, which fasten quickly with limited effort. As the nightgown opens up completely flat, it can be put on from a lying or seated position, ensuring less stress for both the wearer and carer. The open back function with a generous overlap also ensures dignity when toileting and a quick drying cotton fabric is

comfortable and practical. As well as the Iona adapted nightie, Adaptawear have a range of other back opening nighties, including their popular Petal Back range, and also fully front button nightwear. Their men and women's ranges feature a full range of adaptive daywear, including front fastening bras and comfortable cotton underwear; with a customer recently sharing they had ‘regained their independence with such helpful items.’ All items can be found at www.adaptawear.com or call 0800 051 1931 for more info. Don’t forget to use code CR10M at checkout for 10% off your order.

Evaness 100% Biodegradable Consumables Range EVANESS is the only full range of biodegradable products for the care and health sector, from various sizes and strengths of bin liners, to clingfilm and food/freezer bags. EVANESS is a derivative from the word ‘Evanesce” meaning to vanish and the technology used in the biodegradable range is scientifically proven to degrade the material if it gets into the open environment and then facilitate the secondary process of biodegradation, without causing micro-plastics. New recent additions to the product range include compostable bin liners which are manufactured to EN13432 certification for home and industrial composting, and the UK’s first ANTI-VIRAL Grip Seal bag, which although are non-biodegradable are specifically designed to combat the transmission of viruses and bacteria. The pandemic brought about many concerns over how to store and handle a range of items, which were handled by many a person to avoid the transfer of viruses

and bacteria. Consumable Supplies created a Grip Seal bag which incorporates an advanced British technology D2P by Symphony Environmental, which provides protection to the surface of the Grip Seal bag against microorganisms or viruses for the lifetime of the bag and offers a 99.9% Anti-Viral reduction after 1 hour of contact. Although the bag can be used for the storage and handling of any items you wish to protect, such as medicines, PPE equipment, laboratory samples, cash, keys etc, as the product is Food-Safe, it also offers its use to storing food. The initial bag size offered is 150mm x 200mm, so useful for smaller items and can form part of your existing health and hygiene protection routine. Consumable Supplies strives to offer unique quality environmentally friendlier products at reasonable prices with a great no-quibble customer service. Free delivery on any order. See the advert on page 21 or visit www.consumablesupplies.co.uk


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 35

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION

A Digital Future of Care in a Post COVID-19 Era The New Year brings good news and light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel with the roll out of vaccination programs, despite this the UK has been forced into stricter lockdown regulations. Health and care sectors are acutely aware of their responsibilities and the importance to look after technology that is fundamental to caring for the vulnerable and their carers. Should systems fail, technology suppliers should provide help and assistance remotely with telephone support and using remote diagnostic tools. At Courtney Thorne we find that most issues are resolved over the phone, where this proves difficult and further checks or reconfiguration is necessary this is done by remotely accessing systems and running diagnostics. 95% of the service inquiries we receive are resolved this way reducing the need to physically attend the site. Inquiries that cannot be rectified remotely will require an engineer to visit. To ensure the safety of residents, staff and the engineers themselves, service providers need to adopt stringent policies with rigorous clarification processes concluding with written

The New MPCSA11 from Medpage Medpage is a family ran company, with a huge heart and resources gathered over our 35- year trading history. The majority of the technologies we design, manufacture and distribute originate from enquiries received from healthcare professionals and personal family care observations. Our product portfolio provides a wide variety of care solutions for epilepsy, dementia, senior care, special needs and sensory loss. Our latest innovation, currently in use in

several Hospitals, presents an effective fall monitoring, detection and reporting solution. The MPCSA11 is a complex software driven sensor monitor made to be user and operator friendly. This device has already proven successful in hospital and care home trials by reducing patient falls while also reducing false positives from a safe patient. The device can monitor and interact with up to three sensor products: bed and chair occupancy pressure pads, PIR movement detection sensors and proximity signal products. In use, a patient or resident rising from their bed would be considered a falls risk, but what if they are simply moving to sit in a chair close to their bed? A standard bed monitor would raise an alarm alerting care staff, who would arrive to find the person safely seated. The MPCSA11 would only generate an alarm if the person was out of their bed or chair for a selectable time duration. Learn more www.easylinkuk.co.uk/mpcsa11 Or see the advert on page 15.

confirmation that there is no COVID-19 on site or where there is, that those suffering are suitably isolated. In the case of Courtney Thorne our process includes asking authorised care home management to fill out a questionnaire prior to our engineer turning up. We also insist that our staff are regularly checked, including logging daily body temperature. Finally equipping field staff with necessary PPE, making sure it is always used and includes a hand washing regime before, during and after any site visit. Courtney Thorne provides our field-based engineering staff with overalls, gloves, face masks and plenty of hand sanitiser. By diligently observing these protocols, and despite our staff visiting care homes and hospitals on a daily basis throughout the pandemic, not one of them has developed any COVID-19 symptoms at any time. For further information visit www.nursecallsystems.co.uk or see the advert on this page.

Andy Bridgewater Expands Alarm Radio Monitoring's Team

Market Leading manufacturer of wireless nurse call and staff alarm systems, Alarm Radio Monitoring Ltd (ARM), has announced the appointment of Andy Bridgewater as its new Head of Sales & Marketing. Former Royal Engineer with Her Majesty’s forces, Andy joined the business in late April, having over 15 years experience within the sales and engineering industry. Andy’s appointment to the senior management team comes at an exciting time for ARM with numerous new products and systems being launched throughout the year, none more so than the Bed Angel, an innovative wireless bed occupancy monitor.

Stuart Ibbs, Operations Director for ARM, said: “We are delighted to welcome Andy to lead our sales team during what is an exciting period of growth for the business. With numerous new products entering the market over the coming year, his appointment is a big part of the company’s commitment to provide high quality products to the care and staff alarm industry” “Andy’s drive and passion for team management will strengthen our sales division, he will be crucial in mentoring our sales team to roll out the new products we are due to roll out” Andy’s role as head of Sales & Marketing will see him lead sales growth for ARM as their product range continues to expand throughout the UK. The Bed Angel, new monitoring software and 7’ touchpad display are either currently available or due to enter the market shortly. Andy commented: “I am delighted to join ARM at such an exciting time as it continues to grow throughout the UK and innovate within the Health Care industry. He continued : Alarm Radio Monitoring’s focus on people development and working as a team is something I firmly believe in, and I am looking forward to working with the sales team to exceed targets whilst continuing to deliver the outstanding customer service that ARM is renowned for” See the advert on page 31.

www.nursecallsystems.co.uk


PAGE 36 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

NURSE CALL AND FALLS 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 01252-330220 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.

Nurse Call from 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 extension 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

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

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

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

Floor sensor mat Wireless door/window exit alerts

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

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 37

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION Make Your Nursecall Data Work For You and Your Residents Using your ‘Call Bell’ data can help improve the care you provide and even aid in getting an “outstanding” CQC rating. Yet, quite often this data is only used to help investigate an incident and ignored for the rest of the time. A lot of care homes still rely on a printer to record event logs making data analysis time consuming and difficult. KAM Systems Limited have launched their Kloud Care Home data logging service. Kloud can be connected to any existing nursecall system using a Kloud shuttle that has a printer or paging interface. All events are logged by the Shuttle & synchronised with the Kloud on any internet enabled device. The service then analyses the data into an easy to understand report which can even be automatically emailed to a home manager’s inbox. The data can include KPI’s such as Average Response Time, Top Five Rooms that ‘call’ the most, Busiest Hours In The Day, No. of Night Checks and much more.

Longer response times during certain hours may indicate that not enough staff are on duty. The data can also show that a resident has started to ‘call’ for help much more than usual and this can be investigated and appropriate measures put in place. Users can login from any connected device to access the Kloud and create custom reports or investigate a specific incident if required. Care Group administrators have a dashboard of all their care homes in one place making it simple to manage. Harpal Momi - Managing Director says “When we asked our customers about Nursecall Data logging most of them said that it was too difficult to analyse or they didn’t have the time. We developed Kloud to help them deliver better care based on the data analysis. The ease in which it can be implemented and the simple subscription model makes it suitable for anyone”. Contact 0330 321 1040, info@kamsystems.co.uk or visit www.kamsystems.co.uk

Alarm Radio Monitoring Alarm Radio Monitoring (A.R.M) is a UK based manufacturer of wireless Nurse Call and Staff Alarm systems; offering a comprehensive range of Nurse Call, Staff Alarm, Fire Alarm, and Door Access bespoke systems. With over 30 years experience in the design & development of wireless Nurse Call & Staff Alarm systems, A.R.M has established itself as a key player within the wireless solutions market to the public and private healthcare sectors. Wireless solutions are ideal for environments which do not lend themselves to running cables, for example listed buildings or busy environments. Wireless systems can be fitted while your home remains operational, so you do not have to close rooms off and they offer greater flexibility and ease for future expansion. Care Homes choose A.R.M nurse call systems because they: • Are quick and simple to install. • Make it easier for staff to identify the source of calls

because they give full text descriptions. • Give management the tools they need to monitor and control best practice. The system provides a full audit trail of which buttons are pressed and response times. • Failsafe eg alerts you in the event of a system fault or batteries are running low. • Carry a year’s guarantee. • Are supported 24/7, 365 days a year by specialist engineers over the telephone or online. No matter how demanding your environment, A.R.M believes everyone – whether you’re a customer in a care home or team member – should be within safe reach. Whether you need a combination of a Nurse Call, Staff Alarm, Fire Alarm, Door Access system, we have a team to help design a package that will meet your requirements. For further details call 01568 610 016 or email sales@arm.uk.com

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 39

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Reliant Care Solutions Ltd 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. For further information visit www.rcscare.net or call 03333 444 562.

WristPIT from Pinpoint The WristPIT from Pinpoint,is a bespoke patient call transmitter designed to be worn on the wrist. This wrist-worn personal infrared transmitter (WristPIT) is easily accessible and allows patients to activate a call for even if they are away from their bed or a fixed call-point. Pinpoint’s renowned PIT technology (usually worn by staff for personal safety) has, for the first time, been designed around patient use. The WristPIT can withstand showering and brief submersion in water and also incorporates antimicrobial product protection, reducing the ability for bacteria to grow. According to figures published by the National Reporting and Learning System, around 250,000 incidents where patients required assistance in hospital were reported in 2015/16. In many cases, nursing staff remained unaware that a patient had had a fall for quite some time.

Pressing the clearly labelled call button on the WristPIT notifies the personnel on duty that a patient is requesting help and informs staff exactly where the patient is. The call button is recessed and surrounded by a bump guard to prevent false alarms. Pinpoint Alarm Systems are installed in thousands of medical facilities throughout the UK and USA. The new WristPIT is backward compatible and easily integrated into existing Pinpoint Systems. A green LED indicates the WristPIT is ‘activated’ with good battery level. When the battery requires changing, the LED flashes red until the battery is changed and the device has been retested. In addition to being water-resistant, the WristPIT has been designed to withstand harsh environments and user tampering, meaning suitability for facilities where service users may be at risk of self-harm.

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PINPOINT WRISTPIT The WristPIT is a wrist worn Personal Infrared Transmitter designed exclusively for patient use. The latest call button is recessed and surrounded by a bump guard to prevent false alarms. It is also backward compatible, allowing seamless integration into existing Pinpoint Systems.

DID YOU KNOW? Biomaster Technology is incorporated into all surface areas of the product during manufacture, inhibiting the growth of contaminating bacteria 24/7 for the lifetime of the product.

www.pinpointlimited.com


PAGE 40 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Care South Invests In Ground-Breaking Care Planning Technology A not-for-profit charity in the South of England is the latest UK care provider to invest in ground-breaking technology proven to boost operational efficiency, reduce errors and dramatically improve care delivery. Care South, which provides residential, nursing and dementia care to residents across its 16 care homes, also help people to live independently in their own homes. Working with service users and their families, Care South tailors personal solutions in which all parties can feel secure and confident, with the dignity of those needing care central to the charity’s goals. To ensure that the highest levels of care are maintained, Care South’s care home portfolio benefits from ongoing investment and in-depth training programmes all year round. Care South’s latest investment will see staff go paperless, using Person Centred Software’s award-winning Mobile Care Monitoring to evidence and monitor care interactions in real-time, in a move that will also save each carer up to 3 days per month on paperwork. The gradual rollout will see Care South’s Sussexdown care home receive the software first, with the wider plan being to onboard up to two locations per month until all services are fully equipped with the software. Using Person Centred Software, Care South will be able to make the

most of its unrivalled ecosystem of partners, which includes electronic medication management.

Discussing their reasons for adopting Mobile Care Monitoring, Aaron Whitehead, Director of Residential Care at Care South, said: “We first heard about Person Centred Software through word of mouth and, upon doing our research, it seemed the perfect solution for us. Being fully mobile and icon-driven, the software is incredibly easy to use and saves our carers time that had previously been spent completing paperwork. “We’re delighted with the benefits that the software has delivered people living and working within our homes so far. We look forward to working directly with Person Centred Software as we complete the software roll out over the coming months,” Aaron concluded. Having launched in Australia in 2018, Ireland in 2019 and the Netherlands in 2021, Person Centred Software’s innovative technology is improving systems used in social care globally and has won numerous prestigious industry accolades. In 2020, Person Centred Software was placed on the Sunday Times Tech Track 100 and top 10 SME in Digital Leaders 100, and the Deloitte Tech Fast 50 list in 2019. Furthermore, its new coronavirus-specific features were recognised at the Health Tech Digital Awards 2020 for Best COVID-19 Software Solution. For more information about the benefits of moving to a digital care management system, please visit www.personcentredsoftware.com

First Installation of Game Changing Software for the Care Industry Installed at Nyton House in Chichester The first intelligent tech system that helps both carers and residents has been launched to market by Arquella and successfully installed at cutting edge care home Nyton House in Chichester. Sheffield based Arquella was founded in 2019 –and provides innovative digital solutions for the care industry allowing the focus to be on the care of residents. Combining modern nurse call equipment with advanced software they have created a higher quality of care and improved reporting system to help raise CQC ratings. Paul Howell and Reuben Timoney are the very passionate and entrepreneurial drivers behind the care home gamechanger that is Arquella. CEO and COO respectively, they met by chance in 2018, changing their futures and the future of care home tech. So, what is the digital system? AIDA Assist is an advance nurse call system, a digital care reporter and a whole lot more! The new system is a link between call-logging and care plan software with the most comprehensive automated compliance reporting available. Most nurse call manufacturers use pagers to alert carers to a call on their system. Arquella’s wireless nurse call systems integrate with smartphones without the need for extra equipment to be installed. This allows carers to be alerted to call location instantly. So long pagers! On top of that it can be used to provide evidence for care cost adjustments and supply in-depth specific and overall care analysis during an investigation. In conjunction with good quality home management, it provides unambiguous compliance data that shows the care home is doing

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more than just meeting the regulatory requirements. Paul Howell, CEO of Arquella says: ‘It is not enough to be exceptional at looking after the needs of vulnerable people anymore. Alongside the hands-on care, you need to keep detailed care plans, compliance reports, in-depth care analysis, day by day monitoring of care delivery, accident and incident trend analysis, KPI monitoring against performance standards and so much more. The job of recording care is now so complex that some care facilities employ full-time compliance officers, a luxury that many other care homes don’t have. Our goal is to build a fully integrated digital world of care that helps the care homes take control.’ Arquella believes that their system will also help care homes with their CQC ratings which are often rated lower because of the recording of care, rather than actual performance. Howell says: ‘To achieve a rating of ‘good’ or higher is not a matter of simply meeting the standards of the regulator. We all know how a classification of ‘Inadequate’ or ‘Requires Improvement’ can damage a facility’s reputation and income. It gives potential clients the perception that the level of care being provided is somehow substandard. However, the reality is that more often than not, it is the recording of care that has broken down.’ Along with care plan information, AIDA Assist provides global information for the care home. Average response times for each shift pattern, average staff attendance times and frequency and time of emergency calls. The data can be easily mined quickly for patterns and trends and key point indicators can also be entered into the system. Harvey Hillary is a second-generation care home owner and owns Nyton House in Chichester, the first care home to have the system installed. After a successful career as Head of High Performance & Innovation for the British Sailing Team he came back to work with the family business and is a huge advocate of the Arquella system. ‘The vision at Nyton was to provide a ‘home-like’ experience by encouraging a ‘freedom to roam’ and for residents to spend less time isolated in their rooms and more time in communal areas. Arquella enables us to provide location-based calling from unique user pendants.

How to enhance your rresidents esidents experience -! -!

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Mentally - Brain training apps, memory apps, board challenges.!! quizzes, boar d games, rreasoning easoning challenges. Exercise Physically - Exer cise for the elderly online coordination, increased classes, hand eye coor dination, incr eased around large movement to move hands ar ound a lar ge screen.! scr een.! Emotionally - Reminiscence tours on Google present YouTube Earth, past and pr esent clips on YouT Y ouT Tube of ! interests, eligious services and hobbies or inter ests, rreligious Group Gr oup ZOOM calls to loved ones who cant get person!!! to visit in your rresidents esidents person! ! w,, “We now, “W We use it daily and would not be without ut it now even the rresidents esid nd it easy and fun to use. esidents find Registered Manager, Thank you!” Sandie Evans, Register red ed Manager r,, Oakland’s Oakland’ ’s Care Car Ca arre e Home, Crickhowell

Inspir Inspired ed Inspirations have been working dir directly ectly with car care e homes in developing their interactive touch scr screen een activity tables over the last few years, to pr provide ovide a range of scr screen een sizes and units to suit every car care e setting. setting.!!

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Just think of a giant Andr Android oid tablet built into a solid oak surr surround, ound, on a base that houses a lar large ge battery to allow you to use it all day long and smooth running wheels for easy movement between rooms rooms in your care care home. ! “This amazing bit of technology is making a huge di!erence di!e !errence to ou our ur rresidents” esidents” Melanie Dawson, Manager, Manager r, The Lawns L at Heritage Manor The screen screen is 5mm temper tempered ed glass for your residents ingress residents safety and sealed against fluid uid ingr ess meaning a spill of a cup of tea won’ won’tt ruin your ! equipment. It also means an easy clean solution to stop cross cross contamination using any normal surface cleaner.! cleanerrr..!

‘Removing the clinical feel was one step but removing the triggers of challenging behaviour was a key focus. Our Coach House unit has been designed around people with Dementia and removing Nurse Call Alarms was a massive win. Arquella allows us to notify staff of a ‘Call’ using a mobile device and for a staff member to accept the call and then cancel the call once they have attended to the resident. ‘A huge frustration for me as a care provider was the inability for Nurse Call systems to inform care planning. Most systems can provide a list report of time and frequency of calls and the response time from staff. From my perspective, this is a very limited data set that is missing the most obvious opportunity for the carer to log the ‘reason for call’. Working with Arquella we are developing a carer input screen that will code all alarms and enable us to identify trends and inform care plans. This will be followed by a Task scheduling functionality for prompting medication, pressure areas care, night checks and fluids. Using API exports, we hope to streamline the point of care records keeping that is recorded in or Electronic Care Planning system. ‘As a care home, ultimately, we all want to achieve an outstanding rating from the CQC, but it’s often the accuracy of recording the data that lets us down. This takes time, is labour intensive or has us juggling platforms when we have more important things to do! That is all solved with the Arquella system and we’re thrilled to have it in Nyton.’ The modern call units can be wall mounted or portable for maximum freedom and have been designed with practicality and user-friendliness in mind. Key benefits include… Call alert to mobile Nurse Call Panel Fall sensor Nurse call reporting dashboard Reports, CQC and Call logs For more info. see the advert on page 13 or visit the Arquella website: www.Arquella.co.uk Or call: 0333 242 7505

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 43

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE StackCare UK Expands Offering with Launch Of Two New Client-Monitoring Systems – One for Care Homes CARE VISION and One for Home Care Professionals

StackCare UK, the market leading homemonitoring system provider, has expanded its product range with two new systems for the professional care industry - StackCare Pro and StackCare for Carers. Building on the original StackCare @home system that was launched earlier this year, the new systems provide care home managers and professional carers with up to the minute details on their clients’ wellbeing and activity levels, offering unrivalled extra levels of detail and resource to care packages. Managers and agencies can monitor their clients both centrally, in their office using an online dashboard, and/or through an app on carers’ mobile phones. The systems allow staff to view the status of multiple clients, and, as with StackCare @home, managers and carers can monitor activity levels and data including the number of bathroom visits the client makes, room temperatures and sleep patterns, with alerts sent if a client’s behaviour patterns change. Door sensors and help buttons are also available as optional add-ons to both systems for clients who would benefit from extra monitoring and /or a direct communication link to their care team.

FLEXIBLE, COMPREHENSIVE CARE SOLUTION

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, 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

Developed in Silicon Valley, and using enhanced AI and machinebased learning, both the StackCare for Carers and StackCare Pro systems use discreet wireless smart motion sensors placed in key locations around the client’s home, or care home room. There are no cameras or microphones, thereby ensuring privacy for clients. A central hub gathers the data from the sensors which is analysed and reported back to the carer / agency. The data is anonymised and held in line with GDPR rules. The founder of StackCare UK, Noel Verbruggen, commented, “These StackCare systems give care providers an unrivalled resource that brilliantly compliments existing care packages. The cutting edge technology means carers can know that their clients or residents are OK even when they can’t physically be with them. “We all know that carers often can’t be with their clients for as long as they would like to be, and for busy carers and care homes time pressures are a real issue. It’s here that our smart tech comes into its own. Having instant access to StackCare’s data essentially gives carers an extra pair of hands and gives reassurance to carers, clients and clients’ families”. StackCare is offering agencies the option to partner with them to promote the use of the system to clients as an addition to the agency’s care package offering. To learn more about StackCare UK’s solutions visit www.stackcare.co.uk with the aim to provide essential, accurate information for Spring House Care House in Devon. Matt had purchased Spring House in 2010. Matt developed the software and then spent 6 years proving its functionality within Spring House. It soon became apparent the software could add real value to other service providers and after numerous requests we decided to commercialise the software. In 2016 Care Control Systems Ltd was founded and since then has gone from strength-to-strength with exponential growth. We now have an exceptional team of more than 20 staff who have over 70 years of direct hands-on care experience between them. On top of this our team of Software Developers are experts in their field and are constantly developing our products to ensure they offer everything our customers expect in what is a particularly complex sector. 2020 has been a record year for Care Control with record numbers of customers choosing us, office expansion, overseas sales and an ever growing team to name just a few things. We are so excited for the future! Visit www.carecontrolsystems.co.uk

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


PAGE 44 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57

RECRUITMENT & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Will Care Homes Face an Uncertain Future Without Further Financial Support? By John Rozenbroek, CFO/COO at Capify (www.capify.co.uk) from this crisis?

THE NEED FOR GOVERNMENT SUPPORT

Care home workers have been at the forefront of the battle against coronavirus, and the sector has faced incredible challenges throughout this pandemic. As the world struggled to control the spread of the virus, care homes were amongst the worst hit and had to prioritise protecting resident’s health above all else. Now, as we begin to emerge from the devastating impacts of COVID-19 we are beginning to see the true financial impact this has had on the sector. Reduced revenue due to a drop in the number of residents; an increased need for workers; high staff turnover and the additional cost of PPE and other safety measures within care homes has had a significant impact on cash flow for these businesses. Care England estimated that the cost for adequate PPE during the coronavirus outbreak to be a huge £253 per care home resident, per week. This is an enormous increase on pre-pandemic costs, which were reported to be around £4 per resident, per week. The pandemic has highlighted just how crucial care homes are and the important role they play in supporting our loved ones at the end of their lives. However, there are fears now that without further financial support, the sector will suffer, and so will the level of care residents have access to. We recently completed a survey of SME owners – many of which are in the care sector – and 43 per cent of businesses believed the support offered by the government throughout the pandemic has not been good enough. On top of that, our survey showed that more than 80% were still looking for finance to support them, despite the many different support schemes that have been introduced. As lockdown restrictions continue to ease and the country starts to reopen, do care homes really have everything they need to recover

Unlike NHS-run hospitals, care homes are often privately owned businesses and therefore their revenue comes from patient fees. In an effort to help the sector in its recovery, the Government announced additional financial support for care homes, including a £600 million adult social care infection control fund. However, this funding was distributed across local authorities and deployed at their discretion, and therefore wasn’t readily available to every care home business. However, as of March 2021 the government had lent over £76 billion to businesses, including many health and social work companies, through its four main financial loans schemes; Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), Coronavirus Larger Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) and the Future Fund. The statistics show that the government’s BBLS has now provided more than £46bn in funding to more than 1.5m businesses, while the CBILS has lent more than £24bn to almost 100,000 businesses. According to a House of Commons report, health and social work businesses made up four per cent of the total loan value of both the CBILS and BBLS, totalling more than £2.3bn provided to more than 60,000 businesses across the UK. The figures are huge, and although it was announced earlier this year that the new ‘Pay as You Grow’ scheme would give businesses with a Bounce Back Loan more time to repay their loans if they need it, the problem is much bigger than that. Businesses we speak to have either accessed the schemes already and now need a second injection of capital, or they were not able to access the scheme in the first place, so are facing the challenge of determining what they can do now. For many businesses that did access the schemes, we know that money has already been used to help them through what was a hugely challenging period, so very little if any has been carried forward to look at future growth or investment. Boosting cash flow was the top priority for 57% of businesses in our survey, proving there is still huge demand for working capital. For adult care homes having working capital to ensure high-quality care can be given to all residents and that they have the staff needed to deliver this is absolutely key. Cash in the bank is a necessity. On top of all of this, the pandemic has put enormous pressure on

workers within the care sector and as a result, many businesses have experienced high staff turnover and sickness, leading to a shortage of key skills. The State of Health Care and Adult Social Care report gives an indication of the toll the pandemic has had on the social care workforce with 7.5% of working days lost to staff sickness, compared with 2.7% pre-COVID-19. We know that there's a huge amount of resilience and determination amongst the UK's small businesses, which really are the backbone of the UK economy. But it's clear that SMEs, and especially those within the care sector are still in desperate need of finance this year despite the huge amounts of money that have been lent through the BBLS and CBILS. The Pay as You Grow scheme will provide some welcome relief for many businesses, but it does not address the fundamental issue, which is that SMEs still need finance.

THE ROLE OF TRADITIONAL BANKS Traditional banks continue to make it difficult for SMEs to get the finance they so desperately need to get back on their feet properly, which I believe means that alternative lenders like ourselves will have a crucial role to play in the months that lie ahead. We’re seeing increasing demand from SMEs across the care sector, where we have a strong customer base already, as well as lots of other industries, which is linked to the £50m Small Business Fund we created to help businesses get moving again. The majority of the UK’s ‘big banks’ are much happier lending to larger businesses with a long track record of profitability. But that doesn’t help SMEs and the impacts of the pandemic will have damaged the chances of many smaller businesses getting finance from a big bank. That’s where I think the fintech industry will need to step up more than ever before to help companies bridge the gap. There’s already been huge growth with more and more business owners looking to get finance more quickly; with a simpler approach and with more flexibility. For these reasons, I expect 2021 will be a big year for alternative lenders with the support for the care sector set to be high on the agenda. Capify is an online lender that provides flexible financing solutions to SMEs seeking working capital to sustain or grow their business. The fintech company has been operating in the UK market for over 13 years and also has a sister company, Capify Australia, which provides similar services to Australian SMEs for over 13 years. For more details about Capify, visit: http://www.capify.co.uk

Should Care Home Professionals Be Concerned About Criminal Liability In Respect Of Covid-19 Cases? By Jonathan Grimes (Partner) and Sophie Wood (Senior Associate, Barrister) in the Criminal Litigation team at law firm Kingsley Napley LLP (www.kingsleynapley.co.uk)

In late February 2021 it was reported that a care home worker had been arrested on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter after a patient died of COVID-19. Then in March, two further care home workers were arrested on suspicion of wilful neglect following a COVID outbreak at a care home in Sidmouth, Devon. Should those working in care homes be concerned about criminal liability in respect of COVID-19 cases and on what basis can care home workers be prosecuted for incidents involving COVID-19?

THE APPLICABLE LEGISLATION There are three separate offences which may be relevant to such a situation. 1) Under section 7 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974

(“HSWA”) care home staff are required to take reasonable care for the health and safety of others who may be affected by their acts or omissions. Failure to do so is an offence punishable up to two years’ imprisonment. 2) If a resident dies, in rare circumstances a care home worker may face prosecution for ‘gross negligence manslaughter’. This may arise where the death is considered to have resulted from a breach of the worker’s duty of care towards the deceased. The worker will only be liable if they breached that duty of care through a negligent act or omission; at the time of the breach there was a serious and obvious risk of death, which was reasonably foreseeable; and the negligence, which caused or significantly contributed towards the death, was so bad that it amounted to gross negligence and therefore requires criminal sanction. 3) Following the Mid Staffordshire Inquiry, new legislation was enacted making it an offence for care workers to ‘ill-treat or wilfully neglect’ an individual in their care (section 20 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015). ‘Wilful neglect’ means deliberately neglecting to do something which should be done in the treatment of a patient. It is no defence for a worker to argue that even if they had administered the treatment, it would have made no difference to the patient’s health. ‘Ill-treatment’ means deliberate conduct which can be described as ill-treatment (irrespective of whether it actually damaged, or threatened to damage the health of the patient). The worker needs to appreciate that they were illtreating the patient, or to have been reckless as to whether they were acting in that way. If found guilty, a person can be sentenced up to five years’ imprisonment.

ARE WE GOING TO SEE MORE ARRESTS OF CARE HOME WORKERS RELATING TO COVID-19? Potentially yes. At the beginning of the pandemic the understanding of how COVID-19 was transmitted and what could be done to protect residents was limited. One year on however, there is a better, albeit not perfect, awareness of how staff can help safeguard against outbreaks and deaths. For example, if a care home worker recognises a number of now-known signs of COVID-19, and fails to call a doctor, they could be accused of wilful neglect. Equally if that worker, after recognising the symptoms, fails to isolate that patient, they could be accused of a section 7 HSWA offence. Due to this improved understanding of the disease, it will increasingly be possible to measure behaviour against a common standard. It will be easier to establish what was reasonable for the care worker to be doing at the time and/or demonstrate a causal link between the acts or omissions of the worker and the illness/death. The arrests so far indicate that law enforcement no longer sees COVID-19 as a novel disease about which the risks are not fully understood. They suggest there is a confidence about what standards care home staff should be meeting when managing COVID-19, and where those standards are thought not to have been met, allowing an assessment of where criminal liability comes into play. Therefore irrespective of whether these arrests lead to successful prosecutions, they indicate a change in approach by law enforcement and so care home staff and their employer organisations should expect more enforcement action in this area in the future.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 57 | PAGE 45

RECRUITMENT & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Supreme Court Rules Sleep-In Shift Workers Not Eligible For National Minimum Wage By Hollie Watkins, Banner Jones Solicitors (www.bannerjones.co.uk) To the dismay of employees, but a decision arguably welcomed by employers, the Supreme Court has recently ruled in cases Royal Mencap Society v Tomlinson-Blake and Shannon v Rampersad and another (T/A Clifton House Residential Home) that sleep-in shift workers are not ‘working’ when they are asleep. This in turn means that care workers should only be paid the National Minimum Wage hourly rate on sleep-in shifts when they are awake for the purposes of actively working. Here, Hollie Watkins of Banner Jones Solicitors, discusses the case and its implications in more detail. The ruling brings to an end a strenuous four-year legal battle which centred around Mencap, a UK based charity working with people who have learning disabilities. The case threatened to leave care providers with a potential £400 million back-pay bill that would have potentially jeopardised the care of the most vulnerable people in the country.

The cases were brought by two care workers who were sleep-in workers. This means that as part of their shift, they were permitted to sleep either at work, or at a place near work, in case they were required to assist. Whilst working at night, the care workers were to be present in case of any emergencies and provide assistance when required. In relation to the case of Tomlinson-Blake, The Employment Tribunal and the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT), found that she was working throughout the entirety of her shift regardless of the number of hours spent sleeping. Therefore, it was confirmed that each hour of her sleepin shift were to be included in the National Minimum Wage calculation when calculating her pay. However, in the Shannon case the Tribunal and the EAT dismissed the claim. Further appeals in both proceedings were heard by the Court of Appeal, which held that neither was entitled to be paid the National Minimum Wage for all the hours of their respective sleep-in shifts. The Government now faces pressure to reform care laws following the Supreme Court ruling which has caused unrest and disappointment amongst care workers. Whilst Mencap is relieved not to have to pay the huge back payment that could have crippled the charity, Edel Harris, Chief Executive of the Royal Mencap Society, stands with employers who demand the Government ‘do a thorough and meaningful review of the social care workforce’. Whilst the ruling has provided some sort of clarity for employers and

has mitigated the potential huge costs payable in relation to back payments, employees now face uncertainty as to their pay. In the midst of an ongoing global pandemic, this has added extra pressure to care workers across the UK. If you are an employer or an employee who would like guidance on sleep-in shift work, please contact the Banner Jones Employment Law team.

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Considering A Career In The Care Industry? Here's What You Need To Know... With a wealth of experience recruiting for this sector, Jon Mason, Recruitment Manager at Maria Mallaband Care Home Group fills us in on what you need to know when considering a role in the care home industry.

WHAT ROLES ARE ON OFFER IN THE CARE HOMES SECTOR? Whilst direct care is the key purpose of course, care homes are also mini communities where there really is something for everyone. There are plenty of creative, practical and management roles in the team too, with positions in catering, wellbeing and social activities, administration, housekeeping, management, maintenance, quality control, and even transport.

DO YOU NEED SPECIFIC QUALIFICATIONS? Whilst there are some roles that do need specific qualifications there are many that don't. In fact, in many cases getting hands on experience whilst studying can be a much more effective way to learn plus some employers actually value the opportunity to align your learning to their own methods and practices. For example, Maria Mallaband currently has a number of Trainee Nurse Associates studying with universities across the UK alongside their current roles. Being able to earn and learn like this gives them the opportunity to become fully qualified nurses without having to worry about funding.

ARE THERE ANY PARTICULAR SECTORS THAT ARE WELL SUITED TO A CAREER IN A CARE HOME? With the pressures of the ongoing pandemic on

certain industries, many are needing to look elsewhere for reliable employment. We've seen more applications for those who want to completely change their career path and are now looking to build a long-term future in the care sector. Many of our most recent hires have come from completely different sectors, including project management, children's activities, hotels, and even personal training. Those within retail, customer service and hospitality have developed great interpersonal skills and are able to work as part of a team. In sectors that are struggling, people are now considering where those skills could be applied elsewhere, and care homes have a lot to offer.

WHICH ARE THE RELEVANT SKILLS THAT YOU WOULD LOOK FOR? One of the most important skills you can bring to this field is passion! After all, it might be your place of work, but it is home for those who live there. It’s also important that people who choose this career are confident communicators and empathetic, whether they engage directly with those living there or not. Those within retail, customer service and hospitality often cultivate great communication skills and have learnt to work well as part of a team. As well as customer facing roles I have already mentioned, there are plenty of other roles that could provide relevant skills. Experience in the food industry could lead to a career in the catering team, or perhaps a role co-ordinating hobbies and activities for those with creative or artistic inclinations. More practically minded individuals may be well-suited to general maintenance, cleaning or transport positions. A passion for people and companionship as well as the work you do can make such an impact on your role and those around you. With each home operating as its own community accommodating every need for those who live there - the possibilities really are endless.

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