The Carer Digital - Issue #71

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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 71

Government Launches Landmark Review of Health and Social Care Leadership

The government has launched a complete review of leadership in health and social care. The review will be led by former Vice Chief of the Defence Staff General Sir Gordon Messenger, and will report back to Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Sajid Javid, in early 2022. The Health and Social Care Leadership Review will look to improve processes and strengthen the leadership of health and social care in England. Working with the health and care systems, retired General Sir Gordon Messenger will have a team from DHSC and the NHS to support him led by Dame Linda Pollard, chair of

Leeds Teaching Hospital. The government is determined that every pound of investment is well spent so that everyone gets the care that they deserve. Strengthening leadership, including clinical leadership, and spreading the best examples of outstanding management is vital in ensuring that every pound of investment is spent well, by driving up innovation and more efficient ways of working. The review will help to reduce regional disparities in efficiency and health outcomes.

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VIEWPOINT No full Editor's Viewpoint from me today, as I am thrilled to say I am a judge at the National Association of Care Catering (NACC) Care Chef of the Year competition this week. I have attended the forum for many years now and to be invited to judge is a real honour! It has been quite some time since I judged a chef’s competition. Our sister publication for the licenced and hospitality trade, CLH News, Editor was a regular sponsor of the Student Chef of the Year competition on behalf of the Craft Guild of Chefs. I’m a bit “rusty”, but really looking forward to it. The standard each year seems to get better, and is testament to the dedication of care chefs who are motivated to deliver excellence for their residents and clients no matter what pressures they face.

Peter Adams

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The Carer is published by RBC Publishing Ltd, Suite 4, Roddis House, Old Christchurch Rd, Bournemouth, Dorset. Contributions are welcome for consideration, however, no responsibility will be accepted for loss or damage. Views expressed within this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher or the editorial team. Whilst every care is taken when compiling this publication to ensure accuracy, the publisher will assume no responsibility for any effects, errors or omissions therefrom. All rights reserved, reproduction is forbidden unless written permission is obtained. All material is assumed copyright free unless otherwise advised.

SALES EXECUTIVES Sylvia Mawson David Bartlett Guy Stephenson

We will of course keep you updated on our Twitter feed @THECARERUK and watch out for next week’s issue for a full report. I was also delighted to see how popular our “Unsung Hero” award is! we had some wonderful feedback from Care homeowners, department managers and staff themselves, and we were delighted to launch the latest UNSUNG HERO at the show. Further details can be found on page 16. We have set aside plenty of time, and we have already received some wonderfully warm uplifting and inspirational nominations! A fantastic luxury hamper awaits the winner so please do get nominating via nominate@thecareruk.com And please do keep your positive stories coming in. We are delighted to publish some delightful stories from various homes around the country, from birthdays to fund raising, from baking to growing vegetables, anything you would like to share please do send it to me at editor@thecareruk.com

TYPESETTING & DESIGN Matthew Noades PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Shelly Roche Published by


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 3

Government Launches Landmark Review of Health and Social Care Leadership (CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) The review comes as the government invests a record £36 billion to put health and social care on a sustainable financial footing and deliver the biggest catch-up programme in NHS history. Any recommendations made as the review progresses will be considered carefully and could be rapidly implemented to make every penny of taxpayer’s money count. Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Sajid Javid, said: "I am determined to make sure the NHS and social care delivers for the people of this country for years to come and leadership is so important to that mission. "We are committed to providing the resources health and social care needs but that must come with change for the better. "This review will shine a light on the outstanding leaders in health and social care to drive efficiency and innovation. It will help make sure individuals and families get the care and treatment they need, wherever they are in the country, as we build back better." The review will also look at how to deliver the findings of proposals and commitments made in previous reports on leadership. The work of the review only applies to England, though other nations will be free to consider its findings, and it will be funded from within existing DHSC budgets. Publication of the review will be followed by a plan committing to implementing any agreed recommendations along with clear timelines.

Cllr David Fothergill, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: “Social care is a complex arena spanning multiple partners across the public, private and voluntary sectors. For a long time, there have been significant challenges, including financial and workforce pressures and the COVID-19 Pandemic has only exacerbated these issues. As rewarding as they can be, leadership positions in social care are therefore demanding, challenging, and can be draining, and we are asking more of leaders at a time of significant challenge. “There are excellent leaders throughout social care demonstrating the right culture of compassionate, inclusive and collaborative leadership that is needed for today’s challenges. The right culture is vital to good quality care and must not be sidelined by a sole focus on efficiency. Learning from the best to help drive further improvement across the board is central to local government’s sector-led improvement mission. The Review team must work closely with local government to utilise councils’ expertise and help inform their recommendations. “There is no additional funding for frontline social care from the estimated £36 billion to be raised by the new UK-wide Health and Social Care levy over the next three years. Addressing the NHS backlog and freeing up hospital beds cannot be done without also fixing social care and we are calling on the Government to commit to a greater share of the Levy to go to frontline social care from the outset. “The upcoming Spending Review must also provide new investment to stabilise social care and allow local leaders to deliver on the Government’s aims of driving efficiency and innovation.”

“Get Covid Vaccine” Or Find Another Job Health Secretary Says Care workers in England should “get out and get another job” if they don’t want to get vaccinated, the health secretary, Sajid Javid, has said. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme he said: “If you work in a care home you are working with some of the most vulnerable people in our country and if you

homes have had two doses of Covid vaccination as of 12 September. Nadra Ahmed, chair of the National Care Association, warned that the deadline needed to be extended for practical reasons rather than out of generosity to workers who are vaccine hesitant.

cannot be bothered to go and get vaccinated, then get out and go and get another

"We are not anti-vaccine," she said, explaining that the sector "needed a bit more

job.” "If you work in a care home you are working with some of the most vulnerable

time to get people where they needed to be" or it faced a catastrophic shortage of

people in our country, and if you cannot be bothered to go and get vaccinated then

staff which would force care homes to close.

get out and go and get another job,” he said. NHS England data reveals that 84 per cent of staff working in older adult care

Mr Javid said that he would not consider extending the deadline and stressed that it was imposed for the safety and benefit of care home residents.


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Mandatory Vaccine - What Will It Mean for a Sector Which Is Already Reeling From the Pandemic and the Continuing Impact of Brexit? By Kevin Poulter, partner at law firm Freeths LLP (www.freeths.co.uk) Mandatory vaccines for care givers has divided opinion both within the health and social care sector and across the country. The new law, due to take effect in November, is already subject to judicial review, but regardless of the outcome, what will it mean for a sector which is already reeling from the pandemic and the continuing impact of Brexit? Following a sector wide consultation in the Spring and the introduction of similar laws across Europe and beyond, in July the Government passed the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities)(Amendment)(Coronavirus) Regulations 2021 into law. The Regulations require all CQC-regulated care homes in England providing accommodation for individuals who need nursing and personal care, to allow entry to the premises, only to those who can evidence that they have received a complete course of an authorised COVID-19 vaccine, unless exempt. This is a very broad requirement capturing all staff (temporary, permanent, agency, volunteers) over the age of 18 as well as adults who need to enter the care home to deliver services (such as tradespeople) or deliver close personal care to the residents (including physiotherapists or hairdressers). There is an annual review built into the legislation, requiring the Secretary of State to consider whether mandatory vaccines remain necessary and whether there would be other means of achieving the policy purpose.

IMPLEMENTING THE REGULATIONS The obligation and responsibility to implement the Regulations falls to each care home, meaning that checks will have to be made and records kept from the implementation date on 11 November 2021. Failure to do so could lead to claims that the home has failed to provide safe care and treatment, significant fines and even the permanent closure of a home. The introduction of the Regulations has left little time for care homes to prepare. With the exemptions to this mandatory vaccine requirement being extremely limited, those providers who have not already started

conversations with their workforce about needing COVID-19 vaccines are already on the back foot. In order to meet the deadline, workers must have received a first vaccine dose by 16 September 2021.

LIMITED EXEMPTIONS AND SELF-CERTIFICATION The list of exemptions is limited. Within the guidance, clinical exemptions will be restricted to individuals who have an allergy or condition that serves as a reason not to administer the vaccine. Visiting family and friends, under 18s, emergency services and people undertaking urgent maintenance work in the care home are also exempt. However, a last-minute change in policy on 15 September 2021 has introduced a 12-week period during which workers are permitted to self-certify that they are exempt from receiving the vaccine. This fills a gap until a new vaccine passport is developed and launched by the Government. The limited medical grounds for the temporary exemption include examples such as those: • Receiving end of life care where vaccination is not in the individual’s interests. • With learning disabilities or autistic individuals, or with a combination of impairments which result in the same distress, who find vaccination and testing distressing because of their condition and cannot be achieved through reasonable adjustments such as provision of an accessible environment. • With medical contraindications to the vaccines such as severe allergy to all COVID-19 vaccines or their constituents. • Who have had adverse reactions to the first dose (e.g. myocarditis). Short-term exemptions also include those on certain medications or who are pregnant, which, in a largely female dominated workforce may provide some additional relief to both providers and workers.

JUDICIAL REVIEW Despite this, the long-term impact on the sector is uncertain. The Regulations are subject to judicial review on a number of grounds; these include the incompatibility of the Regulations with existing laws that prohibit the enforcement of mandatory vaccines, a failure to consider the efficacy of alternatives to mandatory vaccination, the resultant staffing shortages, the discrimination risks and potential human rights infringements. However, it is doubtful that the requirement for staff to be vaccinated will be changed, not least because of a new consultation seeking to make the COVID-19 and potentially the flu vaccine mandatory for all front-line healthcare workers, including those in the NHS.

PLANNING AHEAD

In the unlikely event that the Regulations are repealed, there will still be commercial and legal pressures on care homes and healthcare providers to demand that employees are vaccinated. Live in care agency Elder has reported that 63% of customers would feel uncomfortable being looked after by an unvaccinated carer, or having an unvaccinated carer look after a loved one. It is also the case that some employees may feel unsafe if working in an environment they consider to be unsafe. If there is a risk that residents and service users will seek alternative providers, and employees look to work elsewhere (for example, homes outside of England and other sectors such as hospitality and retail which offer increasingly competitive pay and high numbers of job vacancies), an employer may have little alternative but to mandate vaccines to meet customer and colleague demands. Employers should also anticipate a number of formal and informal grievances from employees; both from those who do not want to receive the vaccine and those who have concerns about working alongside unvaccinated colleagues. Considering a home’s policy on these issues at an early stage and communicating that policy should avoid some of the pressure of being forced into making difficult decisions within the grievance process. So, what should a provider be doing now to prepare for the next few months and beyond? Update employment documents – Ensure job adverts, offer letters, contracts of employment and associated policies and procedures are amended to reflect the requirement that all staff must be vaccinated. Existing staff – Consider how you will deal with existing unvaccinated staff who remain unwilling to comply with the requirement to be vaccinated. It’s likely that you will need to enter into a period of consultation with each unvaccinated employee and to consider what, if any, alternative work may be available outside of a home. Consider data protection obligations – Care homes will be required to keep records of vaccination or medical exemption status and will need to ensure that these records are available for inspection by the CQC. Privacy statements for employees and others will also need to be updated. Contractors – Consider how you will ensure that third parties attending your premises to deliver services, maintenance or personal care are vaccinated; update policies and contracts as necessary. The next few months and years are likely to remain as tumultuous as they have been for the care sector. Those who prevail will do so with a loyal and dedicated workforce founded on trust and good communication.


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Health Secretary Should Act Not Criticize Care providers have called for Health Secretary Sajid Javid to stop criticising care workers and start tackling the crisis in the sector. The Independent Care Group (ICG) is angry after Mr Javid said those working in care should “go and get another job” if they didn’t want to have the Covid-19 vaccine. “I feel Mr Javid should seriously reconsider those remarks,” said ICG Chair Mike Padgham. “What we are looking for from Mr Javid is solutions to the crisis in social care and not remarks that inflame the situation. “I am sure that the Health Secretary knows the blood, sweat and tears social care workers have shed this past 18 months caring for people on the front-line in the fight against Covid-19. “If he wants further evidence then I invite him to visit my care business to see the situation firsthand. “What we need to get social care through the current crisis is constructive dialogue and understanding, not confrontation and contempt.” The ICG wants the Government to delay the 11th November deadline for carers to have both vaccinations to be allowed to work. “There is no such deadline in the NHS and no such deadline for relatives and family visiting care and nursing homes, so why should carers have this sword of

Damocles hanging over them,” Mr Padgham added. “Even with the vaccine, people can still catch and pass on Covid-19 so the rationale behind the compulsory vaccination is flawed anyway. It is merely being used as a draconian stick to beat the social care sector. “At the moment, the sector has 120,000 vacancies and there are predictions that this could increase by a further 40,000 because of compulsory vaccination. “That spells disaster for the care of our oldest and most vulnerable people as we head into the most challenging period, winter. “Providers are already falling by the wayside and the historic figure of 1.5m people living without the care they need will by now be much greater and will be growing fast.” The ICG has called on the Government to step in and tackle the crisis in social care like it is doing over petrol and food shortages. It has warned that a whole raft of challenges is mounting which could push some care providers to the brink of survival just before winter. These include: • |A staffing crisis exacerbated by mandatory vaccination and Brexit • Rocketing energy costs for care and nursing homes • Homecare workers struggling to do visits due to petrol

shortages • Rising insurance premiums following the Covid-19 pandemic “Following Covid-19, the sector is already on its knees and further storm clouds are gathering that could push many providers to the brink, leaving the country short of care when it needs it most,” Mr Padgham added. “The Government thinks it solved the social care problem through the extra funding it announced some weeks ago, but that isn’t the case. The vast bulk of that will go straight to the NHS whilst social care has to wait. Social care and the NHS have to work hand in hand – supporting the NHS without supporting social care is a waste of time. If social care collapses it will pile even greater pressure on the NHS and take that to the bring too. Social care has already been hit hard by the inability to recruit overseas workers following Brexit, the ICG says. “Why is the Government breaking its policy on overseas workers for one sector and not for social care, which needs help just as urgently?” said Mr Padgham.

MP Michael Gove Praises Care Workers At Lakeview Care Home During Visit Michael Gove has praised care workers following a recent visit to Lakeview care home in Surrey. The Surrey Heath MP visited the residential and dementia home after a relative of the care home, Mary Kearney, contacted him praising us for the efforts during the pandemic. The visit was an opportunity for the MP to thank the General Manager and the team, and for the residents to ask questions about his latest policies. Michael Gove said: “Lakeview is a brilliant, passionately run care home, and I was delighted to see first-hand the dedication shown by all the staff who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to make sure that residents are safe and healthy. I am so grateful to Inder Hanzra, the

General Manager, for taking the time to show me the home’s exemplary facilities, and I look forward to returning soon.” General Manager at Lakeview Care Home, Inderpreet Hanzra added: “It means a lot to myself and the team that Mary is happy with the care that we provide to her husband and wrote to Michael Gove personally to acknowledge us. “The team has worked so hard throughout the pandemic to keep everyone safe, happy and engaged and I am immensely proud of them all. “The team and residents thoroughly enjoyed Michael Gove’s recent visit and we look forward to welcoming him back again soon.”

WE NOW SUPPLY A WIDE RANGE OF FURNITURE



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A Million More Health & Care Staff Needed Over Next Decade to Meet Growing Demand The Health Foundation’s REAL Centre has published new research that highlights the huge and growing workforce gap facing the NHS and social care in England over the next decade. It finds that by 2030/31, up to an extra 488,000 health care staff would be needed to meet demand pressures and recover from the pandemic – the equivalent of a 40% increase in the workforce, double the growth seen in the last decade. Alongside this, up to 627,000 extra social care staff would be needed to improve services and meet need – a 55% growth over the next decade and 4 times greater than the increases of the last ten years. A major boost in the workforce would require significantly more funding over the next 10 years. While the recent funding settlement will go some way to helping the NHS recovery, the REAL Centre’s report sets out that funding for the NHS alone will need to grow at twice the rate of the last decade, and much closer to the historic average. This would mean at least 3.2% annual real terms funding increases for health, around £70bn extra by 2030/31. In social care, the next decade will need to see funding rise more quickly than the NHS, sharply reversing a trend over the last decade where NHS spending increased by 20% and social care spending didn’t grow. Public spending on health care in the UK totalled £177bn in 2019, which equates to £2,647 per person for the year. While these are huge sums, this is less than the EU14 average and significantly less than the G7 average, including France and Germany. The findings suggest UK spending will need to rise in the coming decade to meet the care needs of the population, if care is not to fall well short of the standards avail-

able in Western Europe. The findings also highlight the need for longer term policymaking, to avoid short term fixes that may prove to be more expensive over the long run. The required increases in funding and the workforce are driven by an ageing population, rising numbers of people with long-term chronic health problems, and a major backlog in care as a result of the pandemic. Without additional funding and planning to increase the workforce, the report highlights a growing gap between the demands on services, particularly primary, acute, mental health and social care, and the staff and resources available to provide care. The scale of the workforce challenge means action from government is needed on several fronts, including investment in training and recruitment, both domestically and internationally. It also means ensuring that staff salaries, terms and conditions are competitive compared to other work, and that flexible working, progression and career opportunities are all available to encourage new people to join the profession and existing workers to stay. The projected gap in the workforce is in addition to current vacancies across the health and care system – with the NHS 94,000 short of staff and social care at 112,000. The Health Foundation has highlighted that given the time it takes to train new staff and trends in funding for workforce education and training, the findings call into question the extent to which it will be possible to meet growing demand for care and address the backlog of care over the next decade without a significant boost for workforce training in the spending review. In addition, in order for health care needs to be met in the future there will need to be a plan to ensure

the NHS has the equipment and resources it needs to deliver care more effectively, including new technology and equipment, and an adequate building estate. Anita Charlesworth, the Health Foundation’s Director of Research and REAL Centre said: ‘If the Government doesn’t take action now to invest in the workforce the NHS and social care system are likely to face a decade of increasing staff shortages. 5.6 million people are already waiting for care and the health service desperately needs more staff. Workforce shortages are the biggest risk to post pandemic recovery. Despite the more immediate challenges posed by COVID-19, the government must not lose sight of the underlying demand and cost pressures facing the NHS and social care over the long term and the need to plan better to increase the workforce to meet this demand. ‘The money needed to meet pressures in health and social care will need to rise significantly beyond the current settlement, and at an even faster rate in social care. This means the government faces a major balancing act of priorities in the coming decade. 'In the forthcoming spending review it is vital that the government’s recent commitment to put money into day-to-day NHS care is matched with investment to train the health and care staff needed. A comprehensive fully funded workforce plan should be the top priority for government. Without it our health and social care service will be unable to keep up with demand, and care will fall well short of standards in other Western European nations.'

Outstanding Volunteers Recognised For Exception Commitment To Abbeyfield Six individuals have been honoured with a Royal Patron’s Award by The Abbeyfield Society. The Royal Patron’s Awards are endorsed by HRH The Prince of Wales and awarded every year to those who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to The Abbeyfield Society and its Member Societies. This year, due to social distancing measures, the recipients of the Royal

Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and for giving his endorsement to these Awards.” The recipients are in three categories: UK Volunteers Jenny Beacon – The Abbeyfield Gloucestershire Society Frank Musker – Abbeyfield House in Ulverston

Patron’s Awards were announced publicly at The Abbeyfield Society’s

Graham Walker – Abbeyfield Southern Oaks (ASO)

AGM. Some have been presented locally to the recipients, whereas others

Staff members

are due to receive theirs later in the year.

Dimitri Kiriacoulacos – Abbeyfield Australia

Outgoing Abbeyfield Chairman Ian Plaistowe OBE said at the AGM: “I am delighted to recognise the winners of this year’s Royal Patron’s Awards.

Peter Martin – The Abbeyfield Kirkcaldy Society and Abbeyfield Societies in Scotland

Each deserving recipient has made a distinctive contribution to the mission

International Volunteer

and work of Abbeyfield. We are grateful for the continued patronage of His

James Galloway – Abbeyfield Houses Society of Canada



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Secure Social Care Says Care England Care England, the largest representative body for independent providers of adult social care, has submitted written evidence to HM Treasury’s Comprehensive Spending Review emphasising the need for Government to act immediately in order to stabilise the sector or face serious and far reaching consequences. Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “We have used Care England’s submission as yet another mechanism to drive home to Government the precarious state of the adult social care sector with particular reference to the workforce and funding crises. We have offered some constructive solutions as to how the Government can alleviate this situation and hope that we can work with them to deliver the sustainable development of adult social care”. For the immediate term, Care England’s proposals include: • Immediate investment and policy change to ensure the sustainability of the adult social care workforce in the winter months. • Clarity regarding the arrangements and funding regarding the Government’s Build Back Better Plan for health and social care and the Government to work with the sector to understand the practicalities. • The continuation of the testing and infection fund beyond six months, in order to provide certainty to the adult social care sector. This expires today, 30 September.

Better Plan fails to do. • Treasury to consult those policy options presented in the Health and Social Care Committee’s report[1] to level up pay and reward in the adult social care sector. • The National Living Wage uplift to be fully funded within the context of the publicly funded adult social care sector. • Sufficient support and funding for sector bodies such as Skills for Care. This disparity is currently evident in terms of the funding levels between Health Education England and Skills for Care. The Chancellor, Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, is due to deliver the Comprehensive Spending Review on 27 October alongside an Autumn • Adding all care workers to the Shortage Occupation List and reducing the salary threshold in the Health and Care Visa. The Government has taken steps to enable HGV drivers into the country and the same urgency needs to be attached to the adult social care sector. In the long term proposals include: • A ten-year workforce plan, akin to that of the NHS, where career progression, pay and rewards are identified, something that the Build Back

Budget. Martin Green continues: “Failure to support the sector will result in unprecedented demand on the NHS, a loss to local economies and of course a failure to deliver care to those most in need. We hope that our submission will be considered”.

Care Home Worker Receives Royal Recognition A clinical service manager from a West Midlands care home has been awarded an honorary British Empire Medal by Her Majesty The Queen, recognising his services to residents, families and colleagues during the pandemic. Aby Joseph has worked at Bupa for nine years, joining as a newly qualified nurse. For the past two years he has been with Bupa’s Alveston Leys care home in Stratford-Upon-Avon, where he is Clinical Services Manager. He also stepped up to manage the home, while the Home Manager was on maternity leave. Aby was nominated for the award for going above and beyond to provide care and selfless support to residents and colleagues. Aby has a young family, though voluntarily moved into the home to provide round-the-clock support for residents and his peers. He also helped residents stay connected with their families, reassuring them that their loved one was safe and well in the home. The award makes Aby the seventh Bupa colleague to receive recognition in the Queen’s honours, due to their efforts during the pan-

demic – more than any other provider. In October 2020, four colleagues received British Empire Medals, with a further two announced

in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list on 1 January 2021. Congratulating Aby on his achievement Rebecca Pearson, General Manager for Bupa Care Services, said: “Aby is a fantastic colleague and we’re all incredibly proud of him for receiving this honour. It’s well deserved and testament to his efforts everyday to make the people around him smile, even in the most challenging of times.” Nicola French, Home Manager at Bupa’s Alveston Leys added: “At only 35, Aby shows skill, compassion and empathy that would take people a lifetime to learn. He is a shining example of someone who genuinely has others’ best interests at heart. The past year has been exceptionally challenging, and I can’t imagine where we’d be without him.” The residents at Aby’s care home are also delighted that Aby has received the award. John Bellinger commented: “The dedicated hard work Aby has put in is hugely appreciated. I was very well looked after when I had COVID-19, so many congratulations to Aby for receiving this award.”


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How the QCS PAL Instrument Transformed the Dementia Activity Centre at Age UK Medway "The real voyage of discovery consists, not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes" Marcel Proust. It is a quote that resonates with many of us, but particularly with Sylwia Palmowska, who heads Age UK Medway’s Dementia Services. Sylwia, spent nearly two decades working as a purchasing and recruitment manager in her native Poland, before coming to the UK in 2012. After studying Sociology at university, she joined Age UK Medway in 2013, and put her training and her wealth of managerial experience to good use by bringing new ideas and fresh perspectives to Age UK ’s Activity Centre. “Age UK Medway was my first job in the UK. I started as a carer and worked my way up to become a head of services. It was really important for me to work on the frontlines because I believe working in this way is the only way you really begin to understand the strategic challenges faced by the activity centre and those who use it. Only then can you begin to find solutions.”

FUNCTIONAL ABILITY However, it was while working closely with the clients that Mrs Palmowska began to see the bigger picture. She realised that there was no framework in place for day activity providers to assess the functional ability of clients. This meant that many people could not join in, or make the most of activities. Secondly, she noted that there was no way of assessing, logging and evidencing individual engagement levels for group activities. She says, “Putting such a system in place, which could help us to accurately assess clients and then monitor and record their progress, was key. We realised that this would not only transform the lives of our service users, but their families and friends too, who sometimes – particularly when symptoms of dementia develop very suddenly – don’t understand the condition or how they can support that family member at home. We knew, therefore, that making these changes, would enable relatives to play a focal role in their loved one’s dementia journey.”

THE QCS PAL INSTRUMENT But, while understanding the problem was an important first-step, Sylwia and her team knew that the most

pressing task was to put a robust and cohesive framework in place. Sylwia began trawling the web for best practice research, and it wasn’t long before her perseverance paid off. The answer she was looking came courtesy of Jackie Pool’s QCS PAL Instrument. Twenty-five years ago, Jackie, who is Quality Compliance Systems’ (QCS) Dementia Care Champion, developed the Pool Activity Level instrument (PAL). With QCS’s help it has now been digitally recrafted for the web. Sylwia says, “When I discovered Jackie’s work, it was a wonderful moment for me and my staff. The QCS PAL Instrument was just the tool that we were looking for, as it provides a framework that ensures that our staff can assess the level of functional ability of service users with cognitive impairments, that have been caused by dementia. Acquiring it was a great first step.”

QCS PAL INSTRUMENT For anyone not familiar with the QCS PAL Instrument, it has been expressly designed to determine the level of dementia that each client is living with. There are four levels of ability. The first one ‘Planned’ means that a person with dementia can carry out a task by themselves, although they may need help with activities that require high-level thinking such as problem solving. At a PAL Exploratory level, someone living with dementia would need guidance, while those functioning at a PAL Sensory level, need a carer to demonstrate each single step. At a PAL Reflex level, the person needs extensive support from their carer and will engage through the therapeutic connections with them. Says Sylwia, “The QCS PAL has revolutionised the way we assess new and existing clients. We begin by creating an individual profile and are usually able to place the person we're assessing on one of the four PAL levels. We assess them again after a fortnight and once more after a six-month period.”

DEMENTIA CENTRE At the same time, in collaboration with QCS, Jackie has created the QCS Dementia Centre, which offers social care workers a pioneering set of tools and extensive multi-media resources to help them transform the assessment and management of care provision for those living with the condition. The Dementia Centre helps carers and support workers to evidence better dementia care by by combining the PAL Instrument, with Mental Capacity Act Assessment examples and Purposeful Practice Guides. The Dementia Centre also incldies a Skills Competency Check with a QCS Dementia Compliance Index. These all help frontline workers to put theoretical learning into practice. To find out more about the QCS PAL Instrument, the QCS Dementia Centre or to purchase a subscription, please visit www.qcs.co.uk/dementia-centre. Customers can also contact QCS’s team of advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email: sales@qcs.co.uk.

Residents Fiesta As Kent Based Care Home Put On A Mexican Themed Event Tunbridge Wells based care home, Birchwood House, has held a Mexican-themed party, complete with sombreros, ponchos and a live mariachi band for the residents and staff. Residents and staff went ‘loco’ in true Mexican style and joined in with the fun with themed party games, food, and drinks on offer to all. The beautiful gardens of the care home were once again transformed into a colourful and eye-catching backdrop where a live mariachi band set the scene. Staff members donned sombreros and moustaches for an afternoon of Mexican- inspired festivities including dancing, a range of games for all to get involved with, a taco race and residents trying their hand at breaking the donkey piñata as part of the celebration. Residents sipped on fruit cocktails and were served an array of Mexican food such as pork carnitas, guacamole, pickled red cabbage, churros and flavoured tortilla chips and dips, all of which were

prepared by the care home chef, Erminio. Maracas and cactuses made their appearance as the residents soaked up the traditional Mexican music playing behind them which added to atmosphere and fun had by all. The care home has successfully planned many events throughout the last year which have included a Mad Hatters tea party and a Medieval themed summer party. Even throughout the toughest of restrictions, Birchwood House have gone above in ensuring the residents have social gatherings to look forward to. Claire Tye, deputy manager of Birchwood House, comments “We had such a great time celebrating today in true Mexican style. The residents especially enjoyed the mariachi band and themed food on offer. For many of our residents, it’s events like these that really do brighten up their days.”

National Day Of Arts In Care Homes: Compton Lodge Celebrates With “Champagne Performance A Camden-based care home has marked this year’s National Day of Arts in Care Homes with residents enjoying entertainment from musical duo Champagne Enterprise. Around 25 residents at Compton Lodge in Swiss Cottage gathered for an hour-long set by husband and wife Rob and Val Booking in the

residents enjoying cultural experiences together, and C&C prides itself in having a bustling events and activities schedule to enable residents to be active, creative and entertained.” As part of a series of events celebrating Friday’s National Day of Arts in

home’s gardens. A medley of classic songs from the 1950s, 60s and 70s

Care Homes, C&C’s other Camden based care home Rathmore House

were performed, along with smooth jazz, reggae and singalongs that

hosted a performance by the Fab Boys on Monday. On Friday itself, jazz

had some residents on their feet. Resident Lorna said: “They were lovely to listen to. Rob’s voice in particular was very pleasant”. Sharon Bye, Director of Care at Central and Cecil (C&C), who run four care homes in London, said: “After what has been a challenging couple

and swing singer Vintage Ruby will be entertaining residents at Cecil Court in Richmond, before Champagne Enterprise again perform at Homemead, C&C’s other care home, next Wednesday. To further mark the occasion, all four care homes are in the process of

of years it is so heart-warming to again be able to bring live performanc-

being decorated with colourful artworks created by the residents them-

es to our residents. There are a whole host of benefits associated with

selves.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 11

Care Homes Invited To Take Part In Flu Jab Research Project National Care Forum is looking for care homes in London, Leicestershire and Norfolk to take part in a research project to increase staff flu jab rates. FluCare, which is being run by the University of East Anglia and NHS Norfolk & Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, will explore whether offering flu vaccination clinics specifically for staff in the care home, along with financial incentives for homes, can increase uptake. What is FluCare? FluCare is a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)-funded project exploring whether offering staff flu vaccination clinics in the care home can improve flu vaccination rates. The project will take place this flu season and the 2022 flu season, and will help to build the evidence base for government on what works to improve flu vaccination, beyond the rather blunt instrument of mandatory vaccination and set out the case for more collaboration/support for care home staff vaccination. What is involved? • The researchers want to see if offering flu vaccination clinics specifically for staff in the care home, along with financial incentives for homes, can increase uptake. • They are looking for care homes to take part in a small-scale study this Autumn and a large trial next year, again in the flu season.

What types of care homes can get involved? • The project is looking for residential or nursing care homes for people over the age of 65 • The care homes need to employ more than 10 staff • The care homes need to be located in London, Norfolk or Leicestershire. Why should your care home get involved? • Your care home will receive £500 for participating • It will help you to think about your flu vaccination strategy, as you will have sight of early findings • It will help to build the evidence base for government on what works to • Some care homes will receive the flu vaccination clinics and others will not, but all homes will receive £500 for taking part in the study and providing monitoring information. • The researchers will also want to interview some staff – staff who give up their time for interviews will also be paid. • Within each care home, staff who complete a short online survey will be entered into a £100 voucher prize draw.

improve flu vaccination, beyond the rather blunt instrument of mandatory vaccination and set out the case for more collaboration/ support for care home staff vaccination What do I do to take part? • Complete a FluCare expression of interest form by visiting https://norwichcrtu.uea.ac.uk/redcap/surveys/?s=FYX344HTRC

The Carer’s Next Unsung Hero Award Open for Entries! Once again we here at The Carer are looking for an Unsung Hero! A super deluxe luxury hamper will be the prize for the lucky winner!! Since the beginning of the Covid crisis we have been inundated with absolutely wonderful, uplifting and heartwarming stories from residential and nursing care homes around the country. It is always a delight to publish them! Fundraising, engaging with local schools and communities, baking, candlemaking, knitting, poetry, recitals, fancy dress – you name it we and have been receiving fun stories! Behind the scenes we have also received stories of the dedication commitment and devotion staff have shown in particular during these testing times. However, this the hard work and dedication that those working in the sector often in extremely challenging situations can go unnoticed! In previous years we have sought to redress that by inviting residential and nursing care homes to nominate somebody in their home who they believe is that “Unsung Hero”. Every care home will have somebody who goes that extra mile, and often receives little recognise or reward. Since we launched our Unsung Hero award we have always had a phenomenal response, with some absolutely heartwarming and uplifting stories.

Our last Unsung Hero was Sandra McGale Activity Coordinator from Larkfield View Care Home Greenock. Sandra was nominated by head office marketing administrator Jenni Mack, who explained the changing role and the duties Sandra undertook to ensure that residents and families were reassured and were able to visit safely. “As visiting restrictions were lifted every one in the home was so

excited at the prospect of our Residents finally being able to meet with their loved ones at this time outside and later in doors ,” Jenni said. “However it was quickly established that not all of the visits were nice visits and were proving challenging, and Sandra was readily available to undertake new responsibilities to organise and monitor the visits and provide support for the Resident and their loved ones as necessary . “This role was a difficult one and Sandra found that the visits could be distressing as the Resident had no knowledge or recollection of the person who was visiting. Sandra provided reassurance and distraction which made the visit more comfortable for both the resident and the visitor .” “We are thrilled Sandra’s hard work and dedication has been recognised.” Your own Unsung Hero can be from any department, frontline care, laundry, maintenance, kitchen, administration – we will leave that up to you! We will be drawing a winner on November 12th 2021, so please get your nomination with a short paragraph on what your nominee has done to deserve recognition and please send to:nominate@thecarer.com



THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 13

Social-Ability Calls For Efforts To Raise Awareness of Alzheimer’s and Dementia Symptoms New research commissioned by social venture Social-Ability to mark World Alzheimer’s Month has shone a light on current understanding around Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia revealing alarming limitations to public understanding of the condition and its symptoms, despite more than half of respondents (51%) living with dementia in their family. Social-Ability is now calling for new initiatives to raise awareness around early symptoms of dementia. The research has revealed that almost two thirds (61%) did not think they could identify the difference between early signs of dementia and natural signs of old age, risking delays to diagnosis for those living with dementia. Early diagnosis is vital if people are to benefit from potential treatment options to slow or reverse symptoms. The research also pointed to limited understanding of the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease, the most common cause of dementia. Two thirds (67%) of people said they did not understand the difference between the two. Social-Ability’s findings come as the health and social care sector faces a potential dementia crisis, with news that one in five new dementia cases could have been missed during lockdown, creating a backlog in diagnoses equating to 50,000 people. Further, a report this month from the All-Parliamentary Group on Dementia suggested the pandemic could have set back research into a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease by as much as a decade. Concerningly, 82% of people did not feel confident that the social care sector is well-equipped to deal with the increase in number of people living with dementia, despite the announcement by the UK Government of a new health and social care levy during the course of this research.

sitivity or spatial awareness – should be considered a potential sign. In Social-Ability’s survey, only around half of respondents (49%) recognised reduced sensitivity to the feelings of others an early indication of dementia. John Ramsay, Managing Director of Social-Ability, said: “Despite around half of people living with the condition in their family, it is alarming to see that public awareness remains so limited around symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia. It is vital that this changes – we are calling on the wider health and social care sector and government to join us in raising awareness of early symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia to encourage people to seek diagnosis as soon as possible. This can be so important in enabling effective early interventions. The survey has shed light on the most commonly recognised signs of early-stage dementia. The vast majority of respondents (82%) cited memory loss as an indication of the condition, followed by confusion about dates and times (81%), difficulty finding the right words (68%), concentrating (68%) and following a conversation (67%). The findings also suggest 82% of respondents were not confident recognising the difference between varying types of dementia. As a result, Social-Ability is calling for new initiatives to raise awareness around early symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia, which is too often reduced to simply being a “memory loss disease” leading to under-recognition of the condition and delayed diagnosis. For example, frontotemporal dementia may present first with changes in personality and behaviour or difficulty with language. Vascular dementia symptoms may also vary, meaning any change in cognitive function – including around language use, reduced social sen-

“This also has serious implications for our overstretched health and social care sector, which continues to grapple with the impact of the pandemic, but also estimates that dementia cases will reach more than 2 million in the UK by 2050. One of the most striking findings of our research is people’s concerns about the preparedness of the social care sector to manage this. “Investing in therapeutic programmes will be crucial for helping social care providers to achieve good outcomes for people living with Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia. Social-Ability’s Happiness Programme, for instance, focuses on delivering these better care outcomes, using a programme of interactive tech-based activities with the magic table 360. Programmes such as these will help to reduce the burden on our health and social care services, limit over-medication of patients, and empower people to feel happier in their lives.”

Sunrise Senior Living UK And Gracewell Healthcare In Prestigious Award Success Sunrise Senior Living UK and Gracewell Healthcare have recently been named as winners at this year’s CIPD People Management Awards. Recognising and rewarding outstanding people and initiatives that have transformed organisations, on this occasion the luxury care home providers were named victorious for the ‘Best Resourcing Initiative’ award at the ceremony on 28th September at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House Hotel in London. Despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, Sunrise Senior Living UK and Gracewell Healthcare have continued to flourish, effectively responding to each test posed by COVID-19. As part of these efforts, the care home providers have witnessed the number of high-quality candidates they recruit increase, while reducing the rising costs of recruitment and cutting the rate of team member attrition. These successes were achieved through innovative recruitment methods, such as utilising social media to attract those individuals who held the values and skills needed to succeed in their care homes, while giving them the opportunity to communicate directly with poten-

tial candidates through digital messaging tools. In addition to this, judges were particularly impressed by the care

home’s new system of value-based questions when assessing candidates for roles. A change that allowed the recruitment team to receive a more detailed insight into applicants’ character, the panel noted the care home’s initiative had, “demonstrable financial metrics, strategy and purpose with links to work, people and professionalism matters.” An incredible feat, this award success adds to a number of recent triumphs and carries even more weight when considering that the last 18 months have been one of the most challenging for the care sector. Speaking of their success at the CIPD People Management Awards, Sharon Benson, Sunrise and Gracewell’s Human Resources Director, said: “We’re extremely proud to receive this award. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, we have continued to prosper. This is largely due to the terrific work of team members across our care homes and support office. With our effective recruitment and resourcing strategy we can achieve our goals and allow both team members and residents to live fulfilling and purposeful lives. It is because of this we have maintained our status as industry leaders and continue to deliver the incredible care and support we pride ourselves on.”

Care Home Residents Get Chance To Hit Out At Covid – Literally Residents at a care home celebrated their first party since lockdown by getting their chance to show what they really think about COVID-19. Dedicated staff at Mansfield Care’s Argyll House in Kilmarnock organised a COVID-19 Piñata – with residents invited to give the traditional kids Mexican good luck figurine a ‘beating’ to mark the end of the tough restrictions. Residents attending the home’s ‘masquerade’ ball were also able to swap their usual face coverings for elaborate face masks that had been specially designed for the event. Stephen Ranstead, Manager at Argyll House, said: “We thought a masquerade ball was pretty fitting as it is a change from the usual masks we are all used to wearing. It’s also a fun way to get the residents back interacting and enjoying time together. “Many of our residents were excited to celebrate returning to some sort of normality. “This was the first time we could bring residents together in over a

Mansfield Care care home, Belhaven House.” Delighted residents had the added bonus of going face to face with the COVID-19 themed Piñata, which each taking turns to break it up. Stephen added: “It’s been a challenging year for all of us so we introduced a Covid Piñata to help release any frustration caused by the pandemic and ultimately to have a bit of fun trying to break it and release the sweets inside. “It’s fair to say the residents got very involved and enjoyed showing what they thought of Covid and the impact it has had on their lives.” As well as a host of musical entertainment and party treats, to complete the ball’s theme, residents were wearing personal masks that they designed for the event. A competition was also held between Care Home managers, Stephen year and a half. We also invited some residents from the neighbouring

Ranstead from Argyll House and Fiona Hunter from Belhaven House, with residents judging who designed the best face mask.


PAGE 14 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

Whistleblowing Rises To Record Levels In COVID-Hit Care Sector Whistleblowing in the UK’s care sector rose to its highest recorded level in 2020, driven by health and safety concerns brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. The number of whistleblowing complaints made to the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has increased yearon-year since 2015, with a 43% rise between 2019 and 2020 – a total of 14,508 enquiries were received last year. The figures obtained through a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to the CQC – conducted as part of an annual Care Report by Pannone Corporate – also show that ‘concern’ enquiries increased by 39% between 2015 and 2020. However, the number of safeguarding complaints fell to its lowest level last year to 25,847, driven in large part due to a reclassification of abuse notifications in March 2018 and an increase in providers notifying their local authorities in the first instance rather than the CQC. Bill Dunkerley, regulatory lawyer and director at law firm, Pannone Corporate, commented: “The global pandemic has had a profound effect on the care sector, touching every facet of the industry – whether that’s financially, operationally, or from a corporate governance perspective. Prior to 2020, the word ‘pandemic’ was unlikely to be considered as anything more than a theoretical risk. However, events since March last year, and the imposition of the first national lockdown in the

UK, have demonstrated that providers must be prepared for all eventualities and risks.” He continued: “In the context of the last 18 months, it comes as little surprise that the number of whistleblowing enquiries rose to its highest recorded level in 2020. In general terms, the majority of complaints in the UK relate to health and safety matters. It’s therefore reasonable to assume that the increase in complaints from 2019 to 2020 were related to the coronavirus, with safety concerns around COVID-19 extremely likely to have played a role in these figures.” The Care Report 2021 shows that regulatory interventions rose by 109% between 2016 and 2019, understandably falling in 2020 due to a seismic change in how the CQC conducted itself as a result of COVID-19. The rise in interventions mirrors the number of enforcement actions carried out by the CQC, which revealed an 87% increase since 2014/15 in its latest annual report. Dunkerley said: “In light of the increasing use of enforcement action by the CQC, as well as the apparent realisation of the intention to prosecute more cases, it’s imperative that service providers review their procedures, systems and address risk areas in anticipation of inspection or intervention. This includes assessing areas of their operation requiring immediate improvement; undertaking pro-active audits of risk areas and implementing remedial or control measures where appropriate; and responding to near misses and learning from them to prevent a recurrence.” He added: “The last 12 months have had a particular impact on the CQC, which has had to respond to the novel challenges presented, as well as clarify its own role in regulating providers in light of recent criticisms. When you consider that people are also more alive to potential issues of concern, as well as becoming more aware of the CQC’s role as regulator and its power to take enforcement action in response to issues of concern, then we are likely to see considerable change in the care sector over the course of the next 12 months as providers and the CQC adapt.”

FREE Care Home Guides from Business Companion We all know that running a care home is extremely challenging, especially in these unprecedented times. Thankfully, the Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), in cooperation with the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), has a series of free information resources designed to make managing your care home a little easier. This resource is available on the Business Companion website - the free government-backed website written by trading standards experts to help you understand the laws that affect your care home. There are four key guides available on the subject of care homes: Fair trading focuses on the best way to serve customers and residents, along with understanding the importance of consumer rights and your responsibilities as a care home. Care home complaints addresses the legal responsibilities of care homes in dealing with complaints from residents and their representatives, setting out in plain English the

procedures that should be followed in order to resolve complaints as efficiently and amicably as possible. Web layout lays out the best approach to designing the website for your care home, covering the information that needs to be on it to conform to the law, along with a guide for website development. Communications gives you the vital information you need to make the most out of communicating with residents and their families. Want to learn more about these free guides and other free guidance? Business Companion is exhibiting at the Dementia, Care and Nursing Expo at the NEC, Birmingham, on September 15 and 16 and we look forward to meeting you. Visit Business Companion at stand B120 to receive wide-ranging, expert advice on best practices in the care homes industry. Download your free guides at: www.businesscompanion.info/carehomes



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 12th November 2021 at

nominate@thecareruk.com


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 17

Extension For The Infection Control Fund “Too Little Too Late” Says NCF The National Care Forum (NCF) has responded to the last gasp government announcement on the extension for the Infection Control Fund (ICF), the extension of designated settings and the associated indemnity scheme and the launch of the determination service for those selfcertifying in relation to vaccine exemption. Vic Rayner OBE, CEO of the National Care Forum said: “At the eleventh hour, the government has finally announced an extension to the funding for Adult Social Care to support the delivery of care services in a Covid-safe environment. The existing funding came to an end on 30th September, the very same day that the government announced the extension. How it expects providers of care to plan and sustain services with the last minute nature of this extension is a mystery. “Whilst the £388 million funding is welcome, it should be noted that

this represents a 23% reduction of equivalent* funding provided by the government in only July of this year, and only 44% reduction of that provided in April of this year. Yet for care services, nothing has changed in terms of the areas that the fund is intended to support. The testing regime remains, the strictures around visiting are still in place, there are extra conditions around vaccination ongoing with more on the horizon, isolation for staff working with clinically vulnerable people is still required and infection control measures including the restriction of staff movement remain a firm requirement. This is before taking into consideration the £100 million of additional costs directly to care homes for implementing mandatory vaccinations that the governments’ own impact assessments determined.” In addition, the government has announced the extension of funding for the Designated Settings, and the associated Indemnity Schemes. Rayner continues: “Designated Schemes were a central plank of the government’s plans to ensure Covid positive patients from hospital were not discharged to care homes. This scheme has been very challenging for care providers to deliver, and made more so by the short-term approach to funding and insuring the services. Leaving the announcement to confirm the

extension of these schemes until the night before both the funding and insurance runs out makes a mockery of the notion of a strategic, thought-through approach to ensuring that people receive the services they need in localities across the country.” Finally, the government has finalised a scheme to determine exemptions for those who need to determine whether they are medically exempt from vaccination. Rayner concludes: “Following the last minute introduction of the temporary self certification scheme for exemption introduced on the 15th September, the government has now finalised the permanent exemption service. This will mean that going forward, no one will be able to self-certify, and anyone who has done so to date will only have a 12 week period to either have their exemption confirmed, or to receive both doses of the vaccine in order to be able to be deployed within a care home. 12 weeks takes us to 23 December, right in the middle of winter pressures which will be even greater this year because of the current workforce crisis. Whilst the certainty around exemptions is welcome, we continue to call for a delay to the implementation of mandatory vaccination scheme within care homes until the wider consultation across health and care has concluded.”

Local Walks And Sing-Alongs For A Worthy Cause To raise awareness for World Alzheimer’s Month, care homes across The Fremantle Trust including Lewin House, Cherry Garth and The Heights, put together events and activities to help raise awareness and funds for The Alzheimer’s Society. Cherry Garth, in Holmer Green and The Heights in Downley, High Wycombe encouraged residents, care teams and relatives to join thousands around the country for the Alzheimer’s Society Memory Walk on 17 September 2021. This involved taking a lovely stroll around their local areas with The Heights raising £800 through donations and Cherry Garth raising £150 through collections in the local community. Activity Co-ordinator at The Heights, Samantha Anns commented: “I was delighted with the support from both the residents and the relatives. It was great to have so many people involved in raising money for such an important charity. The work that the Alzheimer’s Society do to raise awareness and help people living with dementia is so impor-

tant and I’m pleased we have been able support them.” On 27 September 2021, residents, families and friends of Lewin House came together for a wine and cheese evening, with a special choral performance from the Wingrave Singers. Lesley Alexander, a resident at Lewin House who lives with Alzheimer’s disease, was a key member of the soprano section from 1978. Her husband also joined the choir in 1980, so their performance in the home created a special connection and opportunity to relive past memories. Community and Lifestyle Manager, Sue Faulkner – a Dementia Friend and Dementia Champion with The Alzheimer’s Society, who has also co-led workshops and training for employees within The Fremantle Trust commented: “Music is known to elicit emotions, reduce anxiety and provide a way to connect with loved ones who have difficulty communicating, so this event was a great way to engage our residents who are affected by the disease.”


PAGE 18 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

New Report Shows Social Care Is A £5.1bn Engine of Economic Growth A new report– Scotland’s Care Sector: An Economic Driver – marks a significant step towards a new narrative on social care by demonstrating that far from being a burden on the public finances, the social care sector contributes more than £5.1bn Gross Value Added (GVA) to the Scottish economy and supports some 300,000 jobs. The report, commissioned by ENABLE Group and produced by BiGGAR Economics, demonstrates that: • The social care sector’s direct economic impact is more than £3.3bn GVA. •Social care’s indirect economic impact (through supply chains and supporting industries) contributes £800m GVA. • The induced impact of the sector (from employees spending their wages) generates £1.1bn GVA. • 206,410 jobs (155,330 Full Time Equivalents (FTEs)) are directly provided in the wider social care sector. • 49,510 jobs (37,260 FTEs) in suppliers and supporting industries are supported by the sector.

• 41,100 jobs (30,930 FTEs) are supported by social care employees’ spending in the economy. • Raising pay for Scotland’s frontline social care workers will provide a significant boost to the national economy – generating additional tax revenues, reducing the need for in-work benefits, and enabling higher spending in the real economy. • Many of the National Performance Framework outcomes and indicators can be positively aligned with high quality social care from all perspectives; the person using care; the care workforce; communities; businesses; and society as a whole. • Social care has the potential to be a “Superpolicy” because it can achieve positive outcomes across a wide range of areas without unintended negative outcomes. Graeme Blackett, Director of BiGGAR Economics said: “The care sector is often discussed in terms of the challenges of funding it. However, this study shows that we should recognise the significant contribution that the care sector makes to the Scottish economy and how it can be a driver of inclusive sustainable growth as the Scottish population ages, if wage levels reflected the value of care to society.” Theresa Shearer, ENABLE Group CEO said: “This new report lays out a detailed economic analysis that strengthens the case for significant investment in social care, and in particular, demonstrates how enhanced pay for the frontline social care workforce brings benefits to the wider economy. “As the population ages and expectations of truly human rights-driven,

self-directed support rightly grow, the social care sector must no longer be viewed as some expensive burden, but as a thriving engine of inclusive, sustainable growth for the future Scottish economy.” Professor Nick Watson, Chair of Disability Studies at the University of Glasgow, welcomed the report, saying: “Too often, care is presented as a burden; as something that we, as a society, are forced to provide and as a drain on our economy; using up resources that would be better employed elsewhere. In this excellent report, ENABLE have turned the tables on this idea and have been able to show the contribution care and the care sector makes to our economy. It is, as the report demonstrates, one of Scotland’s largest industries, employing large numbers of people and generating wealth in the process. The care sector should be seen as an asset to our community and not a burden.” “Investment in the care sector will not just provide better support for those it cares for, it will also help to boost our economy and provide good, secure and rewarding jobs. Hopefully, this report will start moving discussions forward and help to change the way the financing and economy of care and the care sector are framed.” John Dalrymple, Director of Radical Visions, said: “This is the type of detailed and powerful economic analysis that should finally help to put a proper distance between social care and the deficit-laden connotations of “welfare”. It reminds us that far from being a drain on our economy by a stigmatised and dependent minority, social care is in fact (as Feeley has asserted) an investment in and by and for all of us. The win-win-win economic prospects of the “superpolicy” it projects are exciting.”

Hallmark Partners with FaultFixers to Deliver COVID-Safe Maintenance Management Hallmark Care Homes partners with maintenance management software app, FaultFixers (www.faultfixers.com) in a bid to prevent the spread of COVID-19 within their nineteen homes. The decision, led by Group Estates Manager Steve Brine, was made during the height of the pandemic when social distancing was initially introduced. Maintenance management prior to FaultFixers was a collection of paper-based spreadsheets and logbooks. Face-to-face interactions were necessary in reporting faults and third-party maintenance operators were often visiting homes to perform maintenance tasks. Steve Brine, Group Estates Manager at Hallmark Care Homes says, “we normally would bring an outside contractor into the home but during the pandemic that’s another person coming into the home who could put residents and team members at risk.” He continues, “with FaultFixers we can now stop that from happening as it gives the team the chance to assist the home over the phone [via the App] and get that repair resolved quicker. It prevents and limits the number of people coming into the home.” FaultFixers are the only digital maintenance platform for care businesses that offers completely virtual maintenance management and social-distancing compliant maintenance reporting that can be used by every team member, residents and their family

members. FaultFixers is rapidly growing within the care sector, working with more and more care providers and hospitals such as their recent partnership with Hallmark Care Homes, Morris Care, Oakland Care, and many more. Tom O’Neill, CEO at FaultFixers says, “We are very excited about our recent partnership with Hallmark Care Homes to deliver innovative maintenance technology to their nineteen homes across England & Wales. The partnership is a real testament for us and further establishes the need for maintenance management software during a time where digital solutions are not only in demand but vital for bolstering the protection and safety of the public.” The recent implementation of FaultFixers across the homes have already proven effective with an overall reduction in costs. Alongside a financial benefit, Hallmark has been able to reduce paper waste and fuel consumption by adopting a digital solution impacting the group’s carbon footprint. To read more about the partnership you can view the case study at https://info.faultfixers.com/hallmark-case-study. Alternatively, watch an interview with Estates Manager, Steve Brine from Hallmark to find out more about how maintenance management software has benefited the care group at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=maYeH2yus_8

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PAGE 20 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

How Carers are Combating Loneliness Among Residents By Jacqueline Renshaw, activities co-ordinator for Lidder Care (www.liddercare.com) When working inside a care home, it is crucial that not only do carers provide physical care for their residents but also provide mental stimulation and companionship. Where loneliness was once seen as a trivial matter, it is now understood to be a detriment to a resident’s physical and mental health. Lidder Care offer good rated CQC registered care homes for the elderly that are designed for individuals, ranging from those who require some support with everyday activities, to those who require specialist nursing care. At Lidder Care, their person- centered approach is helping to combat loneliness among their residents. If you are looking to assist your residents and help improve the quality of life within your care home, the fantastic team at Lidder Care have these suggestions. Provide safety and comfort with regular family Zoom calls Although for some the pandemic may seem like it is nearly over but for those who are vulnerable and living in care homes, it is far from that. For many inside care homes, they have been restricted in their outings and visits from friends and family. Zoom video calls are an excellent way to ensure that residents do not feel closed off from their families. Ensure that family members can book regular meetings with their loved ones via an online scheduling system or by simply calling your team. For residents that need more support than others, it is suggested that you have an activity coordinator or carer stand by for assistance. These Zoom video calls do not need to be very long, just enough time for residents to feel connected and loved.

PROVIDE REGULAR GROUP ACTIVITIES FOR RESIDENTS

Another way to help combat loneliness is to help develop friendships between residents. At Lidder Care, each home has their own Activities Coordinators that are responsible for building relationships and bringing residents together. Not only do they hold activities and events for the residents, but they actively encourage friendships and connections to ensure residents feel less alone. It is important to bring variety to residents' lives with a whole host of activities that change regularly. Instead of simply switching on the television, a cinema day can be put on, with ‘tickets’ and popcorn. Tea parties can be themed depending on the time of year, as well as singing and dancing to songs that are reminiscent of the residents’ younger years. When hosting these activities, residents will also be able to find friends who share similar interests to them. It is important for carers to keep an eye on these connections and help them flourish into full friendships.

TURN EVERYDAY ACTIVITIES INTO SOCIAL ONES Activities don’t have to be planned events that take up a lot of time and money. Mealtimes can become an important part of your resident’s day by simply asking questions. In the morning, you can ask what they hope their day will look like, and in the evening, you can ask how they felt about their day. This can also guide how activities and the general running of the care home are structured in the future. Retain normality in residents’ lives Your care home is your residents’ home, and it is important for them to feel as though it is. Creating a safe and comfortable environment that acknowledges their needs and helps them feel in control is vital for their mental health. Simple activities such as getting their hair washed and blow-dried or having someone paint their nails can help to combat loneliness. Newgate Lodge Care Home, has an in-house salon where residents can have their hair done without leaving the home, thus allowing accessible self-care, and pampering to all. For the most part, combating loneliness in your care home can be as simple as helping residents feel that their life is as normal as possible. By simply taking a few moments of your day to speak to your residents, you can help them feel engaged and listened to.

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

Person centred care places the resident at the centre of all we do. This assessment tool helps to optimise the mobility of the resident, improve dignified care and reduces the risk of injury to both the resident and the caregiver. Promoting mobility is the driving force behind The Positive Eight™ philosophy shown in figure 2.

When looking at specific hygiene tasks, needs differ significantly across

care settings and need to encompass both physical and cognitive capabilities determined through individual assessment. Assisted hygiene solutions are designed to allow you to work in an ergonomically sound position, to reduce the risk of injury, whilst supporting a beneficial interaction with your resident. Caregiver safety is paramount, and factors, which affect the risk of musculoskeletal injury, should be considered, such as: • The number, type and functional mobility levels of residents being transferred or participating in hygiene routines • The inadequacy (or absence) of suitable equipment • Restricted spaces • Lack of education and training for care skills To mitigate these risks, evidence has demonstrated that education alone is insufficient. Use of the right equipment improves caregiver safety and reduces injury-related costs for the organisation. Understanding functional mobility, combined with selection of appropriate equipment to support your resident and caregiver can assist in addressing this challenge. Visit www.arjo.com or see the advert on page 6.



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Wonderkin UK, Managing Director, Marites Allen, Talks About Smart Digital Incontinence Aid & Providing Convenience & Confidence in Chronic Care Management Care-giving, in real-time, is an issue that has been looked at again and again in chronic care management- it is not enough to look at if care is being given effectively, but also with efficacy and assurance- to both patients of care and those of the carers. Since the Covid-pandemic, the issue of time, lack of resource, and the disproportions of high quality care are at the heart of this matter. Wonderkin UK, a brand of digital incontinence pads, and app, is now changing the game quickly by elevating the status quo, and creating wonders through providing convenience and confidence through their digital technological products. Wonderkin UK’s, Managing Director, Marites Allen, tells us in the following interview how products such as Wonderkin’s digital incontinence pads and app are ensuring a better quality of life, for all, as we age; and how we all should think about, our own, not so distant future, when approaching the subject matter of implementing technology into taking care of the elderly and those in care homes and facilities.

Q: HOW DOES YOUR NICE CARE SMART INCONTINENCE PADS AND MONITORING SYSTEM WORK? MA: Smart phone (Smart Mobile Devices) are used as the medium- to which it sets alarms and signals a disruption in the homeostatic condition or the patient. Unlike the regular brands that mainly functions as only a pad, Wonderkin's Bluetooth feature (enable) makes safety ( Provide Real-Time Alert) precautions a function (Compare to other incontinence aids) that no other pads on the market currently offer. With the Nice Care Smart Incontinence aids Real-Time Monitoring Technology and Bluetooth enable sensors, Wonderkin offer carers in elderly care facilities to be notified of the patient's void, sleeping posture, and inactivity in real-time, hence, effectively easing the care-giving process especially pressure care.

Q: WHAT KIND OF ‘REAL’ DIFFERENCE IS A PRODUCT LIKE NICE CARE DIGITAL INCONTINENCE PADS AND

APP MAKING TO STAFF AND PATIENTS IN CARE HOMES AND CARE FACILITIES? MA: Real differences are only felt and seen, through another key factor: prioritisation for care staff. A good example would be body rotation and diaper change, where though they are seemingly simple tasks, it takes workflow, task management, pad stock management to keep it all together and ticking along. The difference with a simple product like pads going digital is that carers are able to keep up and be informed of patients in real-time. Aside from prioritizing tasks, costs of pad consumption are cut down dramatically, making not only ‘cents’ financially, but ‘sense’ for the environment. Our pads are 70% biodegradable and hence, when you think about it, if every pad can be used to its full potential, with the patient not having skin irritations and rashes, by the way, the product is not only addressing financial costs to institutions like care homes, but also, providing a corporate social responsibility to those who use them. In Japan, for instance, our products have reduced pad consumption from 30K to 20K in facilities. It is not just about minimising the use of disposable wastes, but improving the quality of sleep for patients, and giving them more dignity, (of not being checked upon constantly) by reducing the number or times a change has to occur during the night.

Q: WHAT OTHER ISSUES DOES WONDERKIN AIM TO SPEARHEAD WITH ITS DIGITAL INNOVATIONS? MA: Another common issue for patients is communication- between their family members and the carers or care home. Our digital innovations give personalised health insights, powered by data that can be easily provided and accessed by both parties. Data protection and that data is being stored securely is paramount to us, and this type of application if it is to be applied to chronic care management. Hence we employ Amazon Web Services (AWS) as our Cloud System provider, which adopts world-class, highly secure data centres utilising state-of-the-art electronic surveillance and multi-factor access control systems. Different access rights are given to various account types within our system, including super admin, general admin, nursing home, nursing home manager and nurse accounts. The data transmission from the Sensor to the Hub is encrypted and contains no client’s data. For more information or enquiries on Wonderkin’s emerging technology and latest innovation solutions to care-giving in residential nursing and care homes visit: www.wonderkin.co.uk or contact maritesallen@wonderkin.co.uk

Shining Stars of Care Recognised at Care South’s Awards Ceremony Care South, a leading provider of high quality residential and home care across the South of England, celebrated the outstanding achievements of its staff at its annual Star Awards ceremony on Tuesday 21st September 2021. Now in its 12th year, the Star Awards recognise and reward individuals and teams from across the company for their outstanding achievements and excellent care provision. For the second year in a row, the event was held live over Zoom with Care South’s Chairman, Jane Stichbury, and Chief Executive, Simon Bird, hosting the event centrally and Trustees, Directors and Senior Managers joining each care home and care at home office in person to present awards and join in the post Zoom awards and celebrations. Awards on the day included Home of the Year, Care South at Home Office of the Year, Residential Care Team Leader of the Year, Home Manager of the Year, Care South at Home’s Best Carer of the Year, Best Dining Experience and the Chairman’s Award. The afternoon also celebrated those staff that were recognised as true Heart Ambassadors in line with Care South’s HEART values, which stand for Honesty, Excellence, Approach, Respect and Teamwork. Queensmead in Christchurch was named ‘Home of the Year’ in recognition of its tireless efforts to create a warm and welcoming home-from-home environment for the residents in its care and for providing food, fun and friendship in everything they do. The team at the home has worked incredibly hard and this has been supported by its high ratings from residents, family members and friends on carehome.co.uk. The Care South at Home Office of the Year was presented

to Care South at Home Crewkerne in recognition of its Good CQC report and audits. Maiden Castle House near Dorchester had a fantastic day at the awards after the home was recognised as part of a special Senior Management Team Award and its manager, Rachel Sohorye also took home the Home Manager of the Year award. Behind every successful manager there is a strong supporting team! Other winners on the day were Sarah Broom who was selected as the winner of the Care South at Home Manager of the Year and Alexandra House near Parkstone was delighted to pick up the Deputy Home Manager of the Year award as well, which was presented to Lauren Taylor. Two of Care South’s partners showed their appreciation to the care sector with Bidfood sponsored the ‘Best Dining Experience’ award

Designer Contracts Pulls Out All The Stops To Beat Pandemic Delay Designer Contracts, the UK’s largest flooring contractor, has supplied and fitted a leading West Midlands specialist dementia care living home with safety floorcoverings – despite major delays caused by the second national lockdown. The company ensured a super-swift turn-around at Dorothy Terry House following a seven month delay on materials – ordered last October – caused by the winter COVID resurgence. The home at Redditch in Worcestershire is a 42 bedroom retirement complex specialising in dementia care living. Over 1,000 square metres of communal corridors, stairs, landings and lounge areas, spread over five floors, were identified as areas in need of replacement. Undertaking its first project as a preferred supplier for the Rooftop Housing Group, Designer Contracts was asked to uplift all the existing flooring and replace with PolySafe Wood FX safety vinyl. Said Adam Denny, asset investment manager for the Rooftop Housing Group: “Our priority is the safety and wellbeing of our residents, and it was reassuring that Designer Contracts appreciated their complex needs. The specification we required for the flooring was met exactly with a quick turnaround once the project was signed off.” PolySafe Wood FX is a high specification safety floor,

perfect for environments such as Dorothy Terry House, combining decorative designs with sustainable slip resistance and high durability. Featuring authentic reproductions of popular and high clarity wood designs, the range incorporates a light to dark colour spectrum with non-intrusive safety aggregates in the vinyl to create a safe yet attractive interior in commercial or residential areas. Following the success of the Dorothy Terry House project, the Rooftop Housing Group has now instructed Designer Contracts to prepare quotes for a further seven similar sized projects in Worcestershire. Designer Contracts is based in Chesterfield, Derbyshire and operates across 15 UK regional facilities. Call 01246 854577 or visit www.DesignerContracts.com for further information.

which went to the team at Alexandra House. The award for the ‘Best Housekeeping and Maintenance Team’ was generously sponsored by BlueLeaf. The infection control and supplies specialist had ensured that during the worst of the pandemic, no Care South care homes or care at home offices went without full supplies of PPE and infection control equipment. Tom Carron from Blueleaf joined the team at Talbot View to present them with this award. The much-coveted Chairman’s Award was presented to three of the e Quality Audit Team who had moved across to supporting all homes with the rigorous testing regimes during the pandemic. This award was presented at Head Office by Care South’s Chairman, Jane Stichbury, who commented: “I have great pleasure in presenting this award to the e Quality Audit Team in recognition of the fantastic support they have given all the homes over the past year. Their attitude is exemplary, and they always show such commitment, enthusiasm and willingness in all they do.” Simon Bird, Chief Executive at Care South, said: “Our Star Awards really are a highlight of the year for us and our teams. It offers us a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the professionalism, passion and commitment to care that is delivered day in, day out by our staff, and gives us the chance to acknowledge and thank everyone for their hard work and dedication – especially during these past 18 months. We received an incredible number of nominations this year and all our finalists and winners should be extremely proud of themselves as we certainly are of them. We are also grateful to our sponsors Bidfood and Blueleaf and thank them for their continued support.”

Wedging Fire Doors Open – An Illegal Practice Fire doors are an essential part of your fire safety strategy and could save lives and limit the collateral damage in your care home should a fire break out. Despite this some care facilities turn a blind eye to the practice of wedging a fire door open, putting the lives of vulnerable residents at risk. If you are the responsible person in your care setting, you could face a large fine or even a prison sentence for allowing this illegal and dangerous practice to happen. To prevent fire doors being wedged open it is important to first understand why staff and sometimes even residents do this. Fire doors must all be self-closing causing staff difficulties when carrying trays and equipment around the care home. Wedging fire doors open in corridors enables them to move quickly and complete their tasks faster. Residents also can feel trapped and isolated when their bedroom door is constantly closed. Due to the often frail nature of elderly residents and impaired mobility and use of walking aids such as sticks, walkers and wheelchairs, many residents may not be able to open their bedroom door to access communal areas and socialise with other residents and staff. This can have a significant impact on their mental health and can lead to feelings of depression. Fire doors prevent the spread of fire and create a barrier of protection. Removing this protective barrier

by wedging the fire door open can significantly increase how quick a fire can spread and can severely hinder your evacuation as smoke and fumes from a fire rapidly fill corridors and rooms. Finding a legal solution to these problems is the only way. A fire door retainer such as the Dorgard has been providing a legal solution for decades. The Dorgard retainers hold the fire door open in normal operation but will close the door when it ‘hears’ the fire alarm. With three versions, Dorgard original, SmartSound and Pro, there is a Dorgard for all care settings. The type of environment will determine which Dorgard is best suited, giving you the peace of mind that you are meeting all your legislative requirements and ensuring that residents are able to move about as independently as possible. Dorgard Original and SmartSound are suitable for small to medium sized settings and can be easily installed by a handyman with the SmartSound being used in noisier environments. For larger establishments Dorgard Pro is ideal as it can accommodate up to 500 doors and offers a simple ‘one glance check’ that the entire system is functioning. For help and advice or more information, please contact Safelincs on 0800 612 7980 visit www.safelincs.co.uk or see the advert on page 29.



PAGE 24 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

Morris Care's Executive Chef Chris Matthews' Passion for Good Food

On first meeting Morris Care's Executive Chef, Chris Matthews, one thing leaps out loud and clear –his passionate belief in the positive power of good food. "Delicious food, well served should be a highlight in everyone's day" Chris says. "It's not simply about using good quality and locally sourced ingredients, it's the little touches that make all the difference." These are things Chris includes in his training for the team of Head Chefs and Deputy Chefs, setting the standard across the family run nursing home group. "Our residents deserve a genuine restaurant dining experience so that means serving nutritionally balanced meals that look good, taste great and are served in a way that makes dining something to look forward to each day" Chris adds. As Executive Chef, Chris brings over 25 years' experience with him (plus a number of catering awards) having qualified at catering college to join the RAF as a young chef at just 21, followed by happy years spent as Head Chef at a girls' boarding school before returning to work at RAF

Cosford. His experience, therefore, ranges from masterminding mobile catering units deployed all over the world to staging Leavers' Ball banquets for 500 guests. So culinary expertise, timing, practicality and aesthetics all play a part in the skills he is instilling at Morris Care. In his role, Chris is charged with upskilling the young team and sharing his knowledge and passion for working with the team of Head Chefs. New Development Days have been introduced by the company where all the kitchen team gather for masterclasses to grow their knowledge and experience. Chris has a genuinely creative energy about him and this is born out in the ideas he has brought to play ensuring residents who require specialist pureed foods are still able to enjoy every mealtime. "One of the things I have introduced is to pipe our pureed foods onto the plate so it looks appetising. Just the other day I was thinking how to ensure the vegetables looked good to eat despite being pureed. So, I piped the carrot into a conical shape on the plate then the lovely bright green pureed broccoli became the leaves on the top of the carrot. It looked so colourful and fun on the plate and the resident loved it" he added. Encouraging all the Home Chefs to be inventive is something Chris is also passionate about. He continued: "A great way to see how you are doing is to turn the tables and sit and eat in your own dining room. "I regularly sit with my diners asking them what they like and if there is something new that they remember and would love to taste again." Chris sees his role in overseeing and the delivering the best culinary experience as integral to the holistic care offered by all Morris Homes. "I don't just want to see our Chefs in the kitchen – our residents love

Bring Some Festive Cheer to Your Residents Whether it be an NHS hospital, a private hospital a care home or a Dr's Surgery, no where deserves brightening up at Christmas more than these places. Whilst the majority of the population are at home enjoying the festivities there are people right across the country who are not able to, either because they are too poorly to be at home or they are one of the many Christmas heroes whose rota means they are working and are away from their families and loved ones.

“We get orders for Christmas Trees going into all sorts of NHS establishments from up and down the country…”, says Stephen Evans MD of Christmas Tree World “Some of these are tiny little desktop/bedside trees, or a larger tree for a ward and we’ve even done one that was 30ft tall, outside a brand new hospital”. These are the reasons why artificial trees are becoming the tree of choice:• It is far cleaner to use than a real tree • Real trees can be cumbersome to erect and damage

With over 30 years of experience, CWE can help you provide safe water systems for your care home, including:

• Water sampling • Legionella compliance • Asset inspection – tanks, calorifiers etc. • Remedial works • Swimming and spa pool testing

Tel: 01844 347678 Email: info@chilternwater.co.uk www.chilternwater.co.uk

to see us, share their views and they always enjoy our cookery demonstrations in particular." Chris recently held a bread-making mini masterclass at Stretton Hall to demonstrate how he bakes fresh bread each week with residents enjoying the sensory experience of rolling and kneading the dough as part of the demonstration. Add to this the wafts of just-cooked loaves and everyone was in a happy place. Understanding the dietary needs of residents is, Chris believes, fundamental to Morris Care's ability to balance nutrition with practicality and enjoyment for every resident. Mid-morning cake and coffee or afternoon tea is a daily pleasure to be looked forward to, but for some, the texture of cake can be hard to swallow. Chris has worked to create a delicious soft consistency using the cake ingredients and serves it in appetising small dishes to ensure these residents can be part of that same experience. It is this attention to detail which stands Chris out and which is helping ensure that the dining experience goes from strength to strength at Morris Care. "In this job I believe you should never stop learning. I remember years ago I won a place on the 'Gordon Ramsay Experience for young chefs which saw me working for three days in London's Savoy Hotel with the professional team. Meeting Marcus Wareing and watching those Michelin trained chefs at work was such an inspiration. I learnt so much." Chris finishes: "We may not be serving quite at that Michelin level, but the fundamental principles remain the same. The freshest ingredients, locally sourced wherever possible and cooked with love makes for memorable mealtimes. Something we strive for every day for every resident."

doors etc when installing them • Real trees drop needles everywhere and damage carpets with moisture • Real trees bring insects and fungal spores into the building which can cause sever long term damage • You can choose the shape of tree to fit the space, full, compact, slim or for very tight spaces pencil. • When real trees dry out they become a fire hazard https://interestingengineering.com/video/this-videoshows-how-your-dry-christmas-tree-can-cause-a-deadly-house-fire. All Christmas Tree World trees are fire retardant. Christmas Tree World trees are guaranteed for 10 years but will last at least of 15 years, the cost spread

over 15 years makes them far cheaper than buying 15 real trees In fact, we have supplied that many NHS organisations ordering Christmas Trees from us that it has even spilled over into the world of reality, with Holby City placing an order for a Giant Outdoor Tree for their 2019 Christmas Special. Whatever tree is purchased from Christmas Tree World, for your healthcare establishment, you can be safe in the knowledge that it is fire retardant (excludes snow flocked trees) and will be looking amazing…… if the nurses have anything to do with it. Visit www.christmastreeworld.co.uk for special offers.


FORTUNA.BAMBACH YOUR ONE-STOP SOLUTION

Fortuna.Bambach, based in Enfield, is London's largest independent living centre.

We supply everything from daily living aids to highly specialised equipment and services, so we can offer a ‘one-stop shop’ to nursing and residential care homes, local authorities, hospitals and individuals. Our team of Trusted Assessors and technicians can offer expert advice, and work closely with Occupational Therapists (OTs), and other healthcare professionals to provide individual solutions. Not only do we sell and rent out a wide range of high-quality products, we also provide high standard aftercare including maintenance, LOLER testing and a comprehensive range of training courses. We provide a range of solutions at competitive prices, so that you don’t have to worry about ensuring that your equipment is safe and compliant.

✓ Wheelchairs, walking aids, seating, profiling beds, daily living aids and more ✓ Rental Options ✓ Adaptations - grab rails, stair lifts, level access showers, ramps, wet rooms ✓ Moving & Handling equipment and training ✓ Maintenance, Repairs and LOLER testing

ORNAMIN: TABLEWARE WITH HIDDEN FEATURES

Ornamin, a market leader in eating and drinking aids, who supply more than 2,000 care institutions worldwide have – in collaboration with Occupational Therapists (OTs) and nurses - developed a range of intelligent and functional tableware for people with cognitive problems or limited motor skills in their hands or arms.

Their range includes mugs with a unique cone-shaped interior design, - which help those with limited neck and arm movement or anyone who is bed bound to drink without assistance - plates and bowls that are non-slip with a sloped base, making it easier to trap the food (useful for those who have problems using their hands), and non-slip grip cutlery that provides a firm hold for a user with clammy, shaky or numb hands.

The stylish designs helps remove the stigma of using ‘special’ tableware, which in turn improves dignity and independence, while also easing the support needed from families, carers or care home staff. All of the products are made using high quality materials which are 100% recyclable, plus they’re durable, light to lift, quiet to use, break-resistant, and BPA FREE.

DRINKUP21: THE HANDS-FREE DRINKING SOLUTION

Drinkup21, is an innovative hands-free drinking system, which can dramatically improve the health of those at risk of dehydration.

This simple but effective product works on the same principle as a cup and drinking straw, but has been designed to enable anyone who cannot lift a cup to drink without assistance (even when arm function is completely lost), making drinking easier, improving fluid intake, and reducing the workload of carers.

Drinkup21 consists of a 1 litre bottle with a cap, a body (holder), a multi-positioning clamp and a flexible arm assembly. It also includes a Consumables Parts Pack containing a drinking tube, bite valve (mouthpiece), elbow connector. A tube cleaning brush is also available.

It can be secured to beds, tables and wheelchairs, and used with water, fruit juice and thickened fluids that contain higher nutritional content, thus providing a simple solution to the serious issue of dehydration in the elderly and those living with disabilities. Drinkup21 is beneficial for those with conditions including spinal cord injury, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, the effects of stroke, dementia, and those who do not recognise the need to drink.

For advice and information: Fortuna.Bambach, 4, Northgate Business Centre, Crown Road, Enfield, London, EN1 1TG. Visit: www.fortunamobility.com

www.fortunamobility.com/ornamin | www.fortunamobility.com/drinkup Email: info@fortunabambach.com Telephone: 020 8805 2020


PAGE 26 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

Health and Care Levy: What Does The Future Hold For Social Care? We welcome the planned introduction of a long overdue cap on lifetime social care costs for individuals in England, but there are a number of questions that need answering as we await the release of the Government’s White Paper to follow later this year, says Oliver Brown, Head of Product at Imosphere (www.imosphere.com) Long before the Covid-19 pandemic began, the future plans for sustainability and long-term reform for social care were hanging in the balance, with the country eagerly anticipating how the Government would bring about change. After plans were delayed and previous Governments choosing to overlook the sector-wide challenges, in September the Government announced plans to introduce a health and social care levy to inject much needed funding into the sector. The announcement marks a record level of funding for both the NHS and social care, through a 1.25% increase in National Insurance, but how will this change in policy really benefit those most vulnerable in our society and their carers – and provide the dignity and peace of mind that they deserve?

BREAKING DOWN THE ‘BUILD BACK BETTER’ PAPER We tentatively welcome the plans introduced by the Government to support the health and social care sector, most significantly on the introduction of a cap on lifetime social care costs for individuals in England, which aims to prevent people needing to pay unprecedented costs for their care, now capped at £86,000. The paper appears to make it clear that any care costs paid before October 2023 will not contribute toward the cap – meaning that many people who’ve already paid thousands towards their care will ‘start from scratch’ in working towards the new cap, but this isn’t explicitly confirmed. The pledge to increase the upper capital limit for means-tested support from £23,250 to £100,000 is likely to significantly increase the number of assessments adult social care departments will need to undertake. Local authorities will therefore need additional funding to manage this increase in demand. In fact, of the £36bn announced to go to England over the next three years, social care is likely to see only £5.4bn, com-

pared with £30.6bn for the NHS. The Government needs to define what 'personal care’ actually means. Many individuals' care and support packages are wide ranging and can include support for eligible needs with social participation, accessing the community, accessing work, managing childcare and staying safe. On top of this, working-age adults’ care and support costs can make up around half of most local authorities' expenditure on adult social care – and our analysis work over the years has shown that many care and support plans contain costs relating to ‘shared hours’, for example overnight support within supported living settings.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS ON TOP-UP CARE COSTS The biggest area lacking clarity at this point and highlighted within the plan is around top-up funding. The paper states that people can: “top up their care costs by paying the difference towards a more expensive service, but this will not count towards the cap”. For people living in independent community settings, a more expensive service could mean someone choosing to pay a higher hourly rate for better or more tailored care and support. It could also mean people choosing to purchase longer care visits than would be commonly commissioned through a local authority. How will these top-up amounts be calculated and monitored on an ongoing basis? For self-funders who are assessed as having eligible needs, local authorities will need to be able to monitor progress towards the new cap, requiring a new way of determining the amount of funding these individuals would have received (for only their eligible needs) had they not been self-funding. Additionally, technology will become vital for carrying out regular care reviews and monitoring changes in need over time. We have provided tools which facilitate a fair and consistent approach to support resource allocation for a large number of local authorities over the last 11 years and we can use our wide-ranging experience in this area to be part of the conversations that help shape the detail of the ‘Build Back Better’ policy. The plans outlined in the ‘Build Back Better’ Paper provide a useful platform to bring key changes throughout social care. However, this is only laying the initial foundation for change; there are a number of key questions that need answering around how the policy will work in practice, not to mention how much additional funding social care will need on top of the £4.5bn outlined.

Sunrise of Hale Barns Host Tea Party for Charity… With a Twist Sunrise of Hale Barns recently raised over £700 from a unique tea party for the Macmillan charity as part of their Coffee Morning Campaign. Dissimilar to a traditional tea party, to mark the occasion team member, Regina Faria, Activities and Volunteers Co-ordinator at Sunrise of Hale Barns, supported Resident Ambassador, and baking club organiser, Margaret Brown with an instructional cupcake bake video. With COVID preventing the care home from hosting an event in person, the residents and team members at Sunrise of Hale Barns decided to think outside the box, determined to continue their fundraising efforts in spite of these challenges. The team at the care home settled upon a demonstration video, with Margaret Brown kindly volunteering to share her baking secrets with residents and their family members online, providing a ‘how to’ session for delicious chocolate and strawberry topped cupcakes. Alongside Margaret was Richard Millington, pianist, who played the piano and created a quintessential British tea party atmosphere for the event.

Prior to joining Sunrise of Hale Barns, Margaret used to be a cooking teacher and continues to get the opportunity to do so now, hosting the care home’s baking group every Friday. These opportunities add to a long list of innovative experiences

arranged by the home, with planned activities pivotal to their vision at Sunrise of Hale Barns, enabling residents to live purposeful lives. Speaking on the tea party, Margaret, said: “I was very pleased to help in any way possible to raise money for Macmillan. The video idea was something a little different and took me back to my cookery teaching days!” Reflecting on the event, and why charitable work is so important to them, Director of Community Relations at Sunrise of Hale Barns, Sharon Parkes, added: “This event was fantastic. Margaret and Regina put on a great show, and it was thoroughly enjoyed by all. Here at Sunrise of Hale Barns we place great emphasis upon our charity work. We have done many events in the past for NHS charities, Alzheimer’s Society, Salvation Army, and several local charities including Mustard Tree, Reuben’s Retreat and Gettalife Project. It’s extremely pleasing for us when we can not only organise and take part in events that our residents and team members thoroughly enjoy, but raise money for great causes at the same time.”

The Care Show Returns to the NEC Birmingham CloserStill Media, organisers of the Care Show, are looking forward to opening their doors on the 13th & 14th October at the NEC Birmingham to welcome you all to the main event in the 2021 social care calendar. The Care Show is back and ready to be the safest space for rediscovery and learning, whilst offering interactive opportunities to network with each other in a comfortable setting. It is time to celebrate the great and the good from care homes, nursing homes, and domiciliary care providers and reunite the care community. The Care Show has been the gathering point for the care sector for over 20 years and is dedicated in assisting you to upskill and find the best solutions that will allow you to save time. The event provides 80+ all-important CPD accreditation conference sessions led by experts, which allows you to leave the show and improve your services right away. You can expect to acquire new practical hands-on training and discover answers to problems you are facing in the care sector by reconnecting with other care professionals. With over 200+ leading healthcare suppliers in our exhibition hall you will have the opportunity to ask for their expert advice. Whilst giving you access to thousands of the latest product and services with exclusive show deals to make your budget go further. New for 2021 is an energised and refocused event for everyone involved. The programme has been carefully designed to provide you with everything you need to know to help improve the quality of your care and run an outstanding care business! It will address topics on how the sector is planning for changing client needs, new technologies that are being utilised in care settings, and case studies on what is really working.

This year the Care Show will focus on key themes including: • Build & Design – the latest innovative products and services from design through to build • People - everything workforce and leadership related • Technology – find out what the latest modernisations are in this area for use in a care or nursing home or as a domiciliary care provider • Delivering Better Care - both within your premise and/or in the community • Business Services – key tips on assisting the running of your business • Dementia – looking at what skills and services can be offered to make caring for those with Dementia easier and more rewarding • Infection Prevention – reviewing what have we learnt from the pandemic to prepare us for the future View our full programme at https://tinyurl.com/w6fp28cm There is something for everyone. To ensure you get the most out of the exhibition we have created tailor made road maps to highlight the most relevant stands and sessions depending on your interests, ensuring that you don’t miss out on the outstanding content that you came for. Face-to-face networking has been missed, so this year we have created more opportunities to re-connect with the inclusion of more lounges and networking zones for you to come together, share stories, recharge, and be with other care professionals. We hope to see you there in October! The Care Show continues to be free for all care providers, ensure you register online at https://www.careshow.co.uk/the-carer



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Queen's University Leads Consortium to Better Understand Link Between Healthy Living and Dementia Can a healthy lifestyle combat undernutrition and dementia? The PROMED-COG (PROtein enriched MEDiterranean diet to combat undernutrition and promote healthy neuroCOGnitive ageing) Consortium brings together unique expertise to better understand how the balance between diet and physical activity could reverse undernutrition during ageing and, ultimately, prevent dementia. The research led by Queen's University Belfast will provide new and critical insight into the role of undernutrition in cognitive health. It will explore how diet and exercise can work to combat undernutrition and the effect of factors - such as age, gender, and genetics -on the risk of dementia in older age. One in ten adults aged 60 years+ are undernourished, which means that they have low levels of proteins, calories, vitamins, and minerals caused by reduced food intake or because the body does not process food properly. Undernutrition has a negative impact on the health of older people as it leads to weight loss and increases the risk of dementia in later life. PROMED-COG project co-ordinator, Dr Claire McEvoy from the Centre for Public Health at Queen's University Belfast, said: "Weight loss increases the risk of dementia by up to 40% but occurs a decade or more before the symptoms of memory loss become apparent. This gives us an opportunity to intervene early with

preventative strategies to counteract undernutrition and, potentially, the onset of cognitive impairment." Dementia is a major health priority. It already affects around seven million people in Europe, a figure set to double by 2030, with socioeconomic costs rising to over €250 billion. While factors, such as age and genetics, influence the onset of dementia and cannot be changed, some lifestyle changes could make a difference. PROMED-COG will use existing datasets in Italy to study the links between undernutrition, cognitive decline, and dementia. The project will also test the effect of adopting a diet and exercise intervention over six months on undernutrition and cognition in older adults living in Northern Ireland. This will inform the recommendations developed to slow down cognitive decline and prevent dementia in older European citizens. Dr McEvoy added: "Dementia is a huge problem affecting our ageing population. There is a significant lack of research in this area and this new grant will bring together a range of European experts to develop evidence-based recommendations for the prevention of undernutrition and cognitive impairment during ageing. This will not only prolong the period of life spent in good health but will also reduce the societal and economic burden of dementia." The European Horizon 2020 Joint Programming Initiative "A Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life", and ERA-NET Cofund ERA-HDHL (GA N° 696295) has awarded a grant of over 680,000 euros to the PROMED-COG consortium. Led by Queen's University Belfast, the Consortium includes The National Research Council Italy, The University of Padova, University College Dublin, Wageningen University, and The Friedrich-AlexanderUniversität Erlangen-Nürnberg.

Residents At Local Care Home Grow A Winning Sunflower Residents at Magnolia Court care home in Golders Green recently entered

really enjoyed taking part in the competition and we are delighted to have

the Age UK Barnet Gardening competition. They were joined by team mem-

helped Age Uk Barnet raise some much needed funds for the amazing work

bers and got busy planting to create a beautiful haven full of bright flowers

they do.”

and herbs. Barchester’s Magnolia Court entered several of the competitions categories

‘We’re so delighted to have won – it made our day. We will create a new project in our garden with the vouchers we have won.” said Tammie from

including most ingenious container and tallest sunflower. Residents sent off

Magnolia Court’s Life Enrichment team, whose sunflower was an impressive

their photo graphic evidence and were delighted when they heard they had

236cm high.

won the tallest Sunflower. Octavian Stanciu General Manger at Magnolia Court care home, said: “Some of our favourite days this summer have been spent in our garden. We

Bill, resident at Magnolia court said “I knew that sun flower was a winner, it was so tall and when they bloomed they all looked amazing lined up against the wall.”


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Additional Funding To Help Adult Social Care This Winter People who receive care and the adult social care workforce will be further protected from COVID-19 and flu over the coming months, as the government sets additional funding for infection prevention and control. Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid has announced an additional £388.3 million to prevent the spread of infection in social care settings, including £25 million to support care workers to access COVID-19 and flu vaccines over the winter months. This will ensure social care staff who need to travel to receive their COVID-19 or flu vaccinations are paid their usual wages to do so and can be support with travel costs . To boost flu vaccine uptake among social care staff, GP practices will be able to vaccinate care home staff that are not registered at their practice. Uptake will be regularly monitored by region to allow a targeted approach, and more flu vaccines will be available earlier this year. Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid said: Protecting care home staff and residents has been a priority throughout the pandemic and as we move into winter I am committed to ensuring they have the resources they need. This additional funding demonstrates how we will continue to support those delivering and receiving care. Everyone deserves to be cared for with dignity and respect and our wider reforms will continue to work towards our aim of a world-leading social care system.

Continued funding to prevent infection spreading and provide testing will be delivered through the Infection Control and Testing Fund (ICTF), which was first introduced in May 2020 with an investment of £600 million. Today’s funding announcement includes £237 million for Infection Control measures and £126.3 million for testing costs. This will allow testing to continue for staff, residents and visitors to ensure residents can see their loved ones as safely as possible. Minister for Care, Gillian Keegan said: The social care workforce have continued to deliver high quality care in the most challenging circumstances over the past 18 months – showing true dedication and professionalism – and I can’t thank them enough for all their hard work. We will ensure both staff and those who receive care continue to be protected from COVID-19, as well as other illnesses, this winter. Infection prevention and control measures to protect residents and staff include: • Continuing to provide free PPE to protect against COVID-19 to the adult social care sector until the end of March 2022. • Providing regular asymptomatic COVID-19 testing . • Continuing to support care providers to make best use of technology to help remote monitoring including making pulse oximeters available to care homes that have less than the recommended number of devices. • Continuing to support care home providers to follow guidance on restrict-

ing workforce movement between care homes and other care settings. • Supporting providers to pay staff who are isolating in line with government guidance their normal wages while doing so. As part of supporting good quality discharge the government will also extend the use of designated settings for people discharged from hospital to a care home with a positive COVID-19) test. This includes extending the Designated Settings Indemnity Scheme to March 2022, supported by £478 million which has already been pledged to continue hospital discharge programmes through the winter until March 2022. From November 11 any staff or visiting professionals entering a care home will need to provide evidence of their COVID-19 vaccination or exemption status. Vaccines save lives and it is our responsibility to do everything we can to reduce the risk for those in care, who are some of the most clinically vulnerable to COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. To apply for a medical exemption, individuals will be able to call 119 from 30 September and, if there is a medical reason for exemption, will be issued with an application form. Each application will be clinically reviewed and they will automatically be contacted via post with results of their application. The government will also launch a consultation on extending free PPE beyond March 2022 for Health and Social Care on 1 October.

Nottinghamshire Based Home Care Group Enrols Staff In Parkinson's Training To Better Understand The Condition An award-winning Nottinghamshire based home care group has demonstrated outstanding dedication to improving its services by enrolling staff in a valuable training programme designed to assist clients living with Parkinson's Disease. Respectful Care, one of the leading home care providers in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and South Yorkshire, enrolled its regional training manager, Adam Clements (29), in an intensive training programme dedicated to assisting those living with Parkinson's Disease. Helping care staff understand the day-to-day challenges of people living with Parkinson's Disease, the course highlighted the importance of delivering tailored care and the best methods for helping with tasks such as eating, drinking and mobility - all of which are more difficult with a Parkinson's diagnosis. Furthermore, the course highlighted the importance of enabling people living with Parkinson's Disease to feel safe and comfortable at home.

Discussing his reasons for undertaking the training, Adam said, "Parkinson's Disease is one of the health conditions that we have had a lot of feedback from staff on in the past. Our care staff have been passionate to learn more about this condition with an overriding desire to develop, and this course has given exactly that." "I was astonished to learn just how many people in the UK are affected by Parkinson's Disease - 1 in 500. I also discovered that a lot more younger people are being affected. I was taken aback by the numbers as the condition is a lot more prevalent than I had thought originally." "At Respectful Care, we look after several clients living with Parkinson's Disease. We, as a team, must be well informed to ensure we are providing high quality and person-centred care to customers living with the condition. As we also offer training and advice to family and friends of clients living with specific health conditions, our improved knowledge can be used to enhance this further so that everyone feels adequately supported," Adam concluded. As an accredited trainer, Adam can now deliver the course to colleagues across the Respectful Care group. The group's ultimate aim is to equip all staff with improved Parkinson's knowledge, which can be utilised during care delivery and shared with client's families and significant others.

Marjorie Celebrates Her Centenary In Style At Bournemouth Nursing Home A Bournemouth nursing home resident has just celebrated her 100th birthday in style. Marjorie Shattock, who has lived in Dorset all her life, has been a resident at Muscliff Care Home for three years. The great-grandmother enjoyed her presents and cake, and post from the Queen, as she celebrated with family and friends in the nurseled care home Born in the Charminster area of Dorset, Marjorie had a career in retail, and loved to dance and swim. And with a passion for travel, she has journeyed to the USA and all over Europe. A century ago, the country was still feeling the effects of the Spanish Flu pandemic – an ironic reminder of where we are today. David George was prime minister, and Charlie Chaplin’s career was blossoming. And now, Marjorie has been able to celebrate her own lifetime of achievements, surrounded by loved ones. Marjorie’s daughter, Caroline, said it was wonderful to see her mum looking so happy on her milestone birthday. She said: “What a truly amazing day! To get to 100 is a real reason to

celebrate and the team at Muscliff have done mum proud here.

“Suffering from dementia, it’s not been an easy time for her, but the staff here are incredible. They have ensured she’s been safe and comfortable daily, and it’s so lovely to see her so happy today.” Home manager Dedrey Charles said: “Marjorie is a lovely lady and extremely popular with everyone here. I’m so happy that we’ve all been able to share this special day with her.” Muscliff is part of Sears Heathcare and CEO Richard Adams said: “At Muscliff Care Home, we are a nurse-led care home, so our approach focuses on meeting the healthcare needs of our residents. Our team are proficient in caring for – and enhancing the quality of life of people with dementia. It’s wonderful to see one of our residents be able to celebrate her 100th birthday here. My best wishes go to Marjorie and her family.” Muscliff Care Home was purpose built in response to the need for high quality nursing care in the north of Bournemouth. Run by a team of well-trained staff, the home ensures residents receive exceptional nursing and medical standards in a sympathetic, warm and friendly home environment. For more information, visit www.muscliffcarehome.co.uk.


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3 in 4 Care Home Workers say Staffing Pressures Will Worsen Due to Mandatory Vaccines 3 in 4 care home staff, 74%, believe that staffing pressures in their care homes will deteriorate further as a direct result of the government’s requirement for staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19. The survey of over 7,000 care home staff by carehome.co.uk, the leading care home reviews website, also reveals the differences in UK’s regions of care home workers who haven’t received any Covid vaccine, with London topping the list at 21%. The North East reported the lowest rate of staff who are yet to be vaccinated, at 10%, with 82% double vaccinated and the remaining 8% single jabbed. The findings come after the deadline for care home workers to have received their first vaccine, with government analysts predicting that around 40,000 staff will lose their jobs due to refusing a jab. In July, the government announced that from 11 November, everyone working in a care home in England will have to be vaccinated. In order to be fully protected by this date, all staff have to have had two doses by 16 September. The latest statistics from the Department for Health and Social Care, published on 9 September, reveal that 82% of care home workers are now fully vaccinated and 90% have had their first dose, a week before the government’s 16th September deadline. The survey, which ran from 17– 19 September, also found that 62% believe colleagues will have to leave

their care home because they are against receiving a vaccine, while just 18% think the policy will have no effect on staff losses. And, despite efforts by the government and health officials to quell fears over the safety of COVID19 vaccines, more than 1 in 5 (22%) say colleagues who are concerned about being vaccinated are so due to fears around fertility. Speaking of the results, Sue Learner, editor of carehome.co.uk, said: “Care homes have been on the front line against COVID-19 and are still coping with the fallout. These findings suggest the vast majority of care home workers fear mandatory vaccines will have a negative effect on staffing levels, adding to their struggle to recover from the pandemic. “The government must provide care homes with the crucial support they need to ensure they can retain and attract more workers into the sector. The industry is already in the grip of a recruitment crisis and the mandatory policy threatens to exacerbate this, posing severe risks to the health and wellbeing of both residents and staff. “Our survey shows there is a lot more work to be done by the government to boost confidence in the vaccine, with fears over fertility and health risks and side effects still high among care home staff refusing the vaccine.”

“My Fair Lady” Conductor Receives Musical Welcome To Romsey Nursing Home A man who has spent 50 years as a musician conducting iconic musicals has had an ‘all singing, all dancing’ welcome from a Romsey nursing home. David Benke (89) has moved into Durban House and has been settling in surrounded by the music which has shaped his half a century spanning work. A conductor for big musicals such as “My Fair Lady” and “Annie Get Your Gun”, the new resident has also worked with many orchestras, including the City of Southampton Orchestra and the Ringwood Musical and Dramatic Society, during his life. With a clear passion for music, staff at Durban House wanted to ensure David had the welcome he deserved. To make him feel at home, he was shown how to stream his favourite music on to the big screen. Karen Simmons, Home Manager at Durban House, said: “David’s one wish would be to visit Bayreuth in Germany, the home of Richard Wagner opera, and we wanted to make that wish come true.” David was shown how to view a concert and take a virtual tour online of the German town. The new resident couldn’t believe his luck. David said: “I’ve had a right royal welcome to Durban House! I’ve spent most of my life surrounded by music, so it’s lovely to be able to do the same here. And to visit Bayreuth from the comfort of my armchair is truly astonishing.”

Happy to have a new home with new friends, David has offered to pass on his passion of music to other residents. The ex-conductor will be holding sessions each week to introduce others to his musical passion, and it was the Carnival of the Animals, composed by Camille Saint Saens, that he chose as his first piece. Peter and the Wolf composed by Sergei Prokofiev, will be his next. David will plan each session and will use his own records and record player. Karen added: “The benefits of music to our residents is considerable, stimulating many parts of the brain at once. It assists to reduce anxiety and depression, supports cognition, speech, and memory. “To have David here, passing on his passion to the rest of Durban House is wonderful. I’m looking forward to listening to more of the music he loves.” Durban House is part of Sears Healthcare and CEO Richard Adams said: “At Durban House, we are a nurse-led care home, so our approach focuses on providing a home from home for our residents while we meet their healthcare needs. It’s great to have David with us, and I’m happy that we’ve been able to keep him close to the music he loves.”

Dementia UK Calling Out For 1,200 People To Take Part In Game-Changing Fundraising Dementia UK’s fundraising event Raise Your Game is back again for more rolls of the dice, whilst aiming for a record number of fundraisers for more life-changing support from dementia specialist Admiral Nurses. The event last year saw familyfilled days of boardgame high jinks as well as wind downs with colleagues at the card table. The charity hopes to bring on board 1,200 fundraisers who are game this year. Raise Your Game will be running from October, but participants can host an event whenever they like. Admiral Nurses are here when people need help. They have the time to listen and the knowledge to solve problems, and are a lifeline for families facing dementia. During a year of lockdown, gaming aficionados will have perfected their poker faces and will be looking to prove their mettle in the charity’s fundraiser. There are a number of events which families and people can get involved with – one of Dementia UK’s fundraisers last year took part in a 24-hour board game marathon, with another winner’s streak of enthusiasm and friendly competition expected amongst fundraisers for this year.

Chief Admiral Nurse and CEO of Dementia UK Hilda Hayo said, “People with dementia can sometimes have difficulty concentrating on things they used to enjoy, such as reading or watching TV. Board games, especially ones they used to play, are a great way to help them have fun and communicate with people around them. “I’m delighted to see so many game-changers taking part in our second ever Raise your Game event. Every dice thrown, counter placed and card played is helping to ensure our Admiral Nurses can reach more people facing challenging times.” If you would like to find out more about taking part in Raise Your Game for Dementia UK, please get in touch by emailing raiseyourgame@dementiauk.org or calling 020 8036 5475. Dementia UK has put together a resource on cognitive stimulation therapy, with board games falling under this. There is evidence to show that people with dementia who take part in word or puzzle games typically show improvement across the areas of memory, thinking, reasoning, attention, organising and planning: https://www.dementiauk.org/cognitive-stimulation/



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The Case for Investing in Your Catering Staff By Alexander Andrews MIET BEng MRes Alexander is a researcher and educator, but prior to all that he worked as a chef for twenty years. He holds a first-class engineering degree, is a qualified teacher and has written extensively on the funding crisis, pre- and post-pandemic, in the NHS and in social care. I want to talk today about what I consider to be the most crucial aspect of nutrition in care homes at this moment in history. Training. I will begin with a question. How many of you reading this article employ or work with a qualified care home chef? I can say with confidence that nearly anyone reading this article will have answered ‘no.’ You may be lucky enough to have a qualified chef, they may have an encyclopedic knowledge of nutrition or food safety but there are only twelve or so qualified care home chefs to date in this country. You may not have even heard of the ‘Chefs in Health and Social Care (Level 2 Specialist Award).’ It is only offered by a trio of colleges across the UK after all. You may consider that your chef doesn’t require further training, that they are competent and that you, as a care home manager, have discharged your legal and morale obligations by providing adequate nutrition to your residents. Maybe this will change your mind. For the past decade the fourth most prevalent cause of death among care home residents has been pneumonia and around 10% of those deaths are aspiration pneumonia due to food particles entering the lungs. If chefs in care homes had a baseline training level which included the preparation of texture modified foods for dysphagia patients would this figure be reduced? Responsibility for nutrition and hydration within a care environment is covered by regulation 14 of the 2014 amendments of the Health and Social Care Act 2008. This states that residents must “have adequate nutrition and hydration to sustain life and good health and reduce the risks of malnutrition and dehydration while they receive care and treatment.” And that’s it. As long as there is adequate nutrition and hydration to maintain life you get that tick from the CQC. But is that really enough? Would consider it adequate if it were your parents receiving the food provided? I hope most readers answered ‘yes’ at this point. Would you feel that they were safe? You’d certainly like to believe this to be the

case, but what assurances have you put in place? In house training? These are the sort of questions I ask myself whenever I enter a home for the first time. But this moral imperative is counteracted by the need to provide sustenance within a tight budget. So, I should just shut up and get off my bleeding soap box, shouldn’t I? No. I will give you three good reasons to invest in the training of your catering cohort. A trained chef with relevant experience can produce meals from ingredients rather than from a box in the freezer. And these dishes are cheaper than prepackaged meals. And they taste better. And they look more appetizing. And they are more nutritious. A chef who has the specialist training I have mentioned above can produce tasty and attractive texture modified dishes too. And, what’s more, if a chef is making a dish, they can adapt it to the particular tastes of the residents. Beyond this economic point research has shown that staff who receive positive input through relevant CPD from an employer have greater job satisfaction and this leads to greater employee engagement. Staff who feel valued ‘thrive despite adversity.’ Staff take pride in their work, enjoy their work. And happy staff stay where they are happy. Staff retention is important for homes at the best of times but in the current labour market it is crucial. Especially if the industry is to lose 40,000 staff in the next few months due to vaccine refusal. Finally, a chef with specialist training can provide the food residents want and need. We all have menus, most are now on a three- or four-week rotation; many change seasonally, which is great (and a legal requirement in Northern Ireland, so well-done you guys!) but the ability to be flexible with these menus, to accommodate the desires of the residents is a tangible asset. A chef who understands the need for texture modified foods won’t just produce safer food reducing the risk of aspiration pneumonia, they will embrace the challenge of making these dishes appealing to the eye and palate. So, there you have it. three good reasons to invest in the training of your catering staff: 1.Save money in the supply chain 2.Retain key staff and improve engagement 3.Improve resident experience and safety I could go on to talk about supply chain flexibility in these uncertain times, better standards of food safety, and avoiding reliance on agency chefs and so many other aspects but I think I will save those for another day.

Reaching Out To 7 Million Patients On ‘Hidden’ Waiting List Requires A Generational Change A generational change in how we treat patients in England is needed if the NHS is to address spiralling waiting lists and ensure the ‘missing’ 7 million patients who are not on the official waiting list are to get the care they need. A new report published by the NHS Confederation warns that waiting lists have grown more rapidly in more deprived areas during the pandemic, with marginalised groups likely to make up many of the missing 7 million patients who would have been expected to have come forward for treatment had it not been for the COVID pandemic. New analysis conducted for the report identifies increases in admissions in areas of less deprivation for specialties such as trauma and orthopaedics and ear, nose and throat. In contrast, the report finds that there have been increases in waiting list numbers associated with areas of greater deprivation, especially in neurology, general surgery and dermatology. Overall levels of waiting per head of population are associated with areas of greater deprivation. The NHS is expecting a ‘bounce back’ in care, with the health and social care secretary warning the waiting list could spiral to 13 million unless urgent action is taken. The recent spending review settlement for the NHS provided an extra £15.8 billion over three years, with most of that funding – £8 billion – going towards dealing with the care backlog. The NHS Confederation and other bodies have warned that the extra funding is welcome and important but it falls short of what is required. The NHS Confederation warns that the challenge of dealing with the

backlog will require the NHS to grow the backlog in the next few months to make sure local services identify all patients that need care. Many parts of the country are now proactively reaching out to the most deprived and marginalised groups in their local communities who they know have not been coming forward during the last 18 months or have not traditionally accessed healthcare services. The NHS has demonstrated significant success in this approach with the COVID vaccination programme and will need to show the same determination, collaboration and creativity to reach out to those who need healthcare but have not yet asked for it. Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “The scale and complexity of what the NHS now needs to deliver is unprecedented. The pandemic will leave a backlog of care in excess of anything we have seen over the last decade. As well as more people waiting, people are waiting longer and because of that, their needs are more complex. The waiting list is now at over 5.6 million and there are believed to be at least 7 million more people in need of treatment who have not been identified yet. “A big part of the NHS’s focus will be on finding these people as we know many of them will be from deprived and marginalised groups, just like it has done with rigorous determination through the COVID vaccination programme. There are already indications that waiting lists have grown more rapidly in more deprived areas during the pandemic and this will get worse unless we deliver what one NHS chief executive told us is a ‘generational change’ in our approach to healthcare.

“The NHS is based on the founding principles of care being free at the point of use, on the basis of need and not ability to pay. For the NHS to truly live up to its founding principles, NHS leaders know that we need a new approach to dealing with the backlog that is based on targeting those in most need, and not solely responding to demand from those who come forward. Traditional approaches to elective care have been based on treating patients in chronological order from when they join the waiting list. This approach won’t work this time round. “Getting this right will require the NHS to reach out to local communities in imaginative ways. Many local NHS providers and integrated care systems are already doing this by going out into their local communities, including to places of worship and social clubs to actively target people who need care but who have not yet come forward. It means the waiting list will almost certainly get worse before it gets better. But this approach is the right one given it will help ensure we address the backlog in a fairer way. “It may be difficult for the public to understand this given the cash injection the NHS is set to receive, but we are facing a long, hard road ahead before we are able to address the backlog. A legacy from the pandemic must be that we started to turn the tide on deprived and marginalised groups experiencing worse outcomes for their care.” The NHS Confederation report is based on a series of events that the organisation held with health and care leaders, as well as a survey of the NHS Confederation’s Health Leaders Panel.

Wine Not? Care Home Residents Tour The Wonderful World Of Wine Staff and residents at Barchester’s Hugh Myddelton House care home in Southgate were treated to a wine tasting masterclass hosted by Nick Parker and Lee Isaacs from Unity Wines. Wine can be a complicated subject and Unity Wines aims to help people navigate the different styles on offer in order to find the perfect wines for all of its customers. Nick and Lee took Barchester residents on a tour of the world of wine starting with a light, fresh Italian sparking dry white wine, Tosti Asti Secco. With lemon, pear, apple and white peach, this is a great alternative to Prosecco. Next was a South African white, Bird Island Chenin Blanc – such a versatile wine, this example had green and red apples, peachy fruit, and a hint of something slightly tropical with a wonderful hit of apricots, nuts and melon. “It was a privilege and a pleasure to share some of our best-loved

wines with the Barchester residents, it was a whistle-stop tour but hopefully we gave everyone a good flavour of some of the different styles on offer from a lovely dry Asti right through to fruity Rioja,” Nick said. Lucy Tomlinson, Resident Experience Manager for Barchester Healthcare, commented: ““We love working with our wonderful partners like Unity Wines to bring a wide range of fantastic experiences into our homes for all to enjoy. This tasting was really interesting, (not to mention delicious!) because it showcased so many different styles of wines from countries around the world. General Manager, Ramona Stanciu, said: “Our residents love a glass of wine with their lunch or dinner and they love to try new styles so the tasting went down an absolute treat. It was very interesting to learn which wines pair well with different foods, our residents are looking forward to trying out Nick and Lee’s recommendations.”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 33

Maggie Keenan Receives COVID Booster Vaccine as NHS Vaccination Rollout Continues Margaret Keenan, the first person in the world to receive a Covid-19 jab outside of a clinical trial, received a booster shot today in the next phase of the NHS vaccination programme. The 91-year-old grandmother of four, who is known as Maggie, returned to University Hospital, Coventry to receive the top-up vaccination. May Parsons, who administered Maggie’s initial jab ten months ago also received her booster, as the pair were reunited. The NHS in England made history when Maggie received the first approved vaccination in Coventry on 8 December and has since delivered more than 78 million jabs. Maggie, a former jewellery shop assistant who only retired five years ago and has two children and four grandchildren, said she was “delighted” to get the extra dose before the winter, and encouraged others to do the same. Head of the health service Amanda Pritchard today praised Maggie and May for launching the NHS COVID vaccination programme, along with the staff and volunteers involved in the biggest and most successful rollout in health service history. The NHS chief executive revealed that more than 350,000 people have booked a booster so far this week, and urged others to follow in the footsteps of Maggie and May by taking up the offer when they are invited. Amanda Pritchard, NHS chief executive, said: “The world watched in December as Maggie Keenan became the first in the world to get a COVID vaccine and since then, more than 40 million others across the country have joined her. This is testament to the incredible efforts of NHS staff and volunteers, working at speed to protect people from this awful virus. “It is wonderful to see Maggie get her top up jab today, protecting herself and those around her ahead of winter.

now going out to places, I feel so happy now that I have got this done. On why people should come forward for their vaccine. Maggie added: “It’s saving their lives, their family’s lives, and it is helping the NHS, so what more can I say – go for it, go and have it done, you will feel much better for it, it is going to help you, and help others”. Matron May Parsons said: “To see Maggie doing so well is really extremely heart-warming for me – obviously we had our vaccine in December and getting the booster is imperative if you want maximum protection this winter. “Even if people are not doing it for themselves and are healthy and well, they are doing it for other people that are quite vulnerable. “It is a community responsibility – I cannot say it loudly enough, get vaccinated and get protected”. “With more than 350,000 people already booked in for their top-up jab, it is great to see so much enthusiasm for the booster vaccine in such a short period of time. “If you’re invited, please do come forward for your boost of protection”. The NHS kickstarted the COVID-19 booster programme last week within two days of updated advice from the JCVI. On getting her booster 91 year old grandmother, Maggie Keenan, said: “It was a real privilege to be the first person vaccinated against COVID-19 in December, and to be able to receive my booster alongside May was hilarious. May is great fun – we have done the double-act today, Maggie May. “I feel good, I feel really good. I don’t really know what stops people from having it, maybe they are frightened of the needle, but it is nothing to be frightened of. “It has protected me in my mind as well, and I feel quite confident

to book an appointment to get jabbed. Those who are eligible and had their second vaccine at least six months ago will be invited for a booster vaccine. Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Maggie’s first vaccine was a significant moment for the UK and the world – it provided collective hope that we could beat this pandemic and get back to normal. “Ten months on, the phenomenal vaccine rollout is a proven success and has saved more than 123,000 lives, allowing us to safely ease restrictions while we learn to live with this virus. “I’m thrilled to see that Maggie has got her booster jab. I urge everybody eligible for a booster to book their appointment to help keep the virus under control for the long term and protect the most vulnerable this winter”.

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PAGE 34 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

What Can Be Done To Prepare For The COVID Inquiry? By Sophie Kemp, Head of the Public Law team at Kingsley Napley LLP (www.kingsleynapley.co.uk) is on-going.

TERMS OF REFERENCE There is no obligation on the Government to consult widely on proposed terms of reference; however, the Chair once appointed can consult and amend them. The terms of reference shape any inquiry, its scope, the evidence required and therefore, inevitably to some degree, the conclusions eventually reached. Given there are are already numerous investigations going on at a Parliamentary Committee level as well as by organisations like the People’s Inquiry and BMA, it is to be expected that interest groups will likely want to have the ability to influence the terms of reference set. It will be important for those in the Care home sector to seek to feed in to any consultation process.

INQUIRY LENGTH AND STRUCTURE

Given a judge-led inquiry into how the Scottish Government handled the COVID pandemic will start before the end of this year, many are anxiously awaiting news of the Government’s promised UK- wide public inquiry. Back in May 2021, No 10 committed to that inquiry starting in Spring 2022. Yet months on, details are scant. Who will Chair it? What are its terms of reference? Yes, there may be six months to go, but vital questions remain before any inquiry of this national significance and stature begins.

CHOICE OF CHAIR The choice of Chair will be crucial. We saw what happened with The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, with three appointed Chairs falling by the wayside. With the COVID inquiry, we need a Chair who will command the respect of myriad stakeholders and interest groups including families, businesses and the healthcare / scientific community. More importantly, the postholder will need to stand up to intense political pressure, be robust in the face of media scrutiny, as well as policing responses to information requests whilst the pandemic

Since the Public Inquiries Act 2005 came into force 17 inquiries have concluded. The average length was three and a quarter years, although the longest (still ongoing) has already taken 7 years. Most anticipate the UK-wide COVID inquiry will be amongst the longest to be heard since the Act was introduced. Some have even cynically suggested the timing of the Inquiry has been deliberately chosen to avoid a Final Report appearing before the next election. It is entirely possible to have short and focused inquiries but all the indications are that the forthcoming COVID inquiry will be long and complex, with an emphasis on accountability as much as learning lessons for the future.

PREPARATION So what can be done now to prepare for the Inquiry? Those who anticipate being a Core Participant or called as a Witness may want to consider speaking to lawyers now with independent experts already dusting down their cvs. Participants should be thinking now about the lines of enquiry they want to see pursued and how they can best engage with the Chair when appointed. Those who expect they will be required to give evidence should also be thinking now about their document retention and storage policy.

Professional witnesses may want to meet the inquiry team early on to explain a technical subject or enhance their understanding before information requests are made. Thinking ahead is advisable. A statutory public inquiry has enormous information gathering powers and the ability to draw on information from a wide range of sources. The Chair can even issue a section 21 notice, requiring information, and reminding recipients that intentionally witholding information is a criminal offence. Requests can be extensive and issued at very short notice, requiring significant effort to search, collate and organise. It is wise not to be caught on the back foot. The inquiry, once underway, will need to follow a strict timetbable.

CONCLUSION Public inquiries are by their very nature daunting, stressful and time consuming. For those involved, in whatever capacity, preparation is key at each stage whether that be evidence gathering, during hearings or at the final report phase. From experience, stamina, resources and sincerity are the three essential elements when preparing for an Inquiry. And this applies more than ever for the forthcoming COVID inquiry. Inquiries have a hugely valuable purpose. Foremost they help us understand what happened in relation to matters of public concern and make recommendations for the future. They also enable people to be heard, to tell their stories and put those involved under the spotlight. The COVID inquiry is never going to keep everyone happy, but this will represent probably the most important opportunity we have for those involved in our response to the pandemic to reflect on their roles and to contribute to a learning process for the nation. The author is Sophie Kemp, Head of the Public Law team at Kingsley Napley LLP. Sophie has extensive inquiry experience from representing families in the 7/7 Inquest and the Catholic Church before the IICSA, to advising senior witnesses in the FCA’s Davis Inquiry and the Undercover Policing Inquiry. More recently she acted as solicitor to RICS’ Levitt Review into Treasury Management.

Skills, Knowledge, and Confidence Delivered Online Covid19 reminded us all just how important the NHS and care home staff are to our society. We are grateful for their hard work and bravery, and feel honoured to support them through our Laser Care Certificate course and CPD short courses. Working in the care sector is certainly demanding, so our objective is to make it convenient and straightforward for workers to upskill and acquire confidence in the process. The Laser Care Certificate course provides knowledge to cover every standard included in the official Skills for Care specification. Every lesson includes bespoke video tutorials specifically for the Care Certificate course, as well as reading materials and good practice examples. Furthermore, a mandatory quiz at the end of each lesson (which requires a 100% pass mark) ensures both competence and confidence. Managers are able to create their own accounts to enrol staff on the course and track their progress. All of the content is accessible remotely via computer,

smartphone or tablet, enabling care professionals to make progress towards the certificate in a way that suits their circumstances. Additionally, Laser delivers CPD short courses to equip staff with highly-relevant skills and knowledge so they can tackle new challenges or progress in their career. Two courses in particular – ‘Causes and spread of infection’ and ‘Infection control and prevention’ – were very popular during the pandemic. Unlimited use subscriptions are available at affordable rates, for organisations wishing to take advantage of a large number of short courses. Whether you are an owner, manager, or independent learner, please don't hesitate to get in touch for a free demo of the Care Certificate course platform, and/or the CPD short course offering. The Laser Learning team can be contacted on info@lasersys.co.uk or +44 (0)1753 584 112. See the advert on page 11.

C & S Seating Postural Management C & S Seating has been providing postural control equipment to hospitals, nursing homes, hospices and medical equipment services nationwide since 1991. With 9 different sizes of T-Rolls and Log Rolls in a removable and machine washable, waterproof Titex or Soft Knit material. These rolls are used to control posture and position of the body in either supine or side lying. Our Knee & Leg support wedges are available in 2 sizes. C & S Seating is the sole manufacturer of the Alternative Positioning Support (APS) system. Ideal when more control of the abducted lower limb is required (See photo) which has

removable side cushions and middle pommel; this is available in small or large. Our popular range of Soft Knit covers in a choice of 5 vibrant colours provide a softer alternative that fit easily over our standard waterproof rolls. It is recommended you seek professional advice to select the correct product depending on your needs. Contact us on 01424 853431 or visit us at www.cands-seating.co.uk to request or download a brochure, pricelist or order form, request an individualised quotation, speak to an advisor or to place an order. See the advert on page 12.



PAGE 38 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

Research Into Infection Prevention Control In Care Homes Reveals How To Make Improvements Post COVID-19 A new study has investigated measures used to control infection in care homes for older people. The study involved analysing data and previous research from 2007 to 2020, before the COVID-19 pandemic, in a bid to understand the reasons how viruses spread and identify how to influence this both now and into the future. The research was published in the journal, Health Expectations, and is funded by the National Institute for Health Research Greater Manchester Patient Safety Translational Research Centre (NIHR GM PSTRC). The Centre is a partnership between The University of Manchester and Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust. Dr Maria Panagioti, lead of the GM PSTRC’s Safer Care Systems and Transitions Theme and an author of this study, said: “In England,

Government policy around the discharge of patients from hospitals into care homes has been used to explain how COVID-19 spreads though care homes. “However, we believe this is only part of the story as less attention has been given to investigating the role Infection Prevention and Control played. In conducting this research we’ve analysed a large number of studies to identify some of the reasons why Infection Prevention and Control might not always be effective in stopping COVID in its tracks and how this can be improved to make healthcare safer in care homes for older people. The research identified that one of the challenges faced by care homes is uncovering how an outbreak begins. Then, once an infection begins to spread, identifying who is responsible for the necessary control measures is not always easy. High staff turnover was also found to be an additional challenge. The need to bring in external health care professionals such as GPs to diagnose or treat an infection effects Infection Prevention and Control (IPC). Researchers concluded that training staff repeatedly could support them in ensuring IPC is effectively practiced across care homes as this would help to, overcome one of the key reasons why IPC in care homes has not been as effective as it could have been, i.e. high staff turnover. However, the success of this measure depends upon managerial commitment and organisational improvements being made within care

homes. Dr Panagioti, continued: “Our research has identified how important it is to understand the unique challenges care homes face regarding IPC. We believe repetitive staff training in IPC is key in helping to improve safety for care home residents and we look forward to seeing these recommendations being acted upon.” An experienced public contributor, who is an informal carer, was involved in the research, and said: ‘‘Having previously inspected acute hospital inpatient and mental health inpatient wards for their condition and cleanliness as a Public Member throughout Northwest England, and previously having family members / family friends admitted into care homes, I was genuinely interested in assisting with this much needed research study. “The findings from this study on effective Infection Prevention and Control in care home settings if adhered to by owners, managers and the staff working within care homes, should make a positive difference to the safety and welfare of care home residents by reducing the risks of any potential infections that may originate and then spread. A particular strength of the study was that the voice of those with lived experience of care homes and their family members/ family carers was both listened to and incorporated into the recommendations.”

Gracewell of Camberley Host Fantastic Outdoor Cinema Experience for Charity

Gracewell of Camberley has raised £200 for the Alzheimer’s Society from a charitable outdoor cinema experience on 23rd September. Hosted in the beautiful gardens at Gracewell of Camberley, the event, which was attended by 50 people, including team members, residents, and their families, was organised as a way to bring people together after the COVID-19 pandemic. On the night, all attendees got the full cinema experience, not only enjoying the film classic, Mamma Mia on the big screen, but also tucking into hot dogs, popcorn, and hot drinks whilst wrapped up in blankets. As well as this, guests were treated to some added entertainment that put a constant smile on people’s faces, with team members dressing up as popcorn, ketchup, and hot dogs for the event. The evening proved to be a huge success, providing a unique opportunity for people to spend quality time with their loved ones in a safe environment.

C&S Seating Ltd is 30 Years Old! Since 1991, C&S Seating has proudly been providing postural control equipment to hospitals, nursing homes, hospices and medical equipment services nationwide since 1991. We are a trusted approved NHS supplier. With 9 different sizes of T-Rolls and Log Rolls, in a removable and machine washable, Waterproof Titex or Soft Knit material. These rolls are used to control posture and position of the body in either supine or side lying. Our Knee & Leg support wedges are available in 2 sizes. C&S Seating is the sole manufacturer of the Alternative Positioning Support - ideal when more control of the abducted lower limb is required (see photo) which has removable side cushions and middle pommel; this is available in small or large. Our popular range of Soft Knit covers in a choice of 5 vibrant colours provide a

The outdoor cinema experience adds to a long list of innovative events arranged by the rated ‘Outstanding’ luxury care home by the CQC, with planned activities pivotal to their vision at Gracewell of Camberley of enabling residents to live purposeful lives. Reflecting on the fantastic evening, resident at Gracewell of Camberley, Sheila Easy, who attended the event with her Grandson, said: “It really was a lovely occasion. The blankets kept us warm, the film was great, and the popcorn was lovely. A really different experience for us all!’ Speaking of the event, Jeorgia Jones, Home Admission Advisor at the care home, added: “The event was a huge success. Not only did it provide a great opportunity for our team, residents, and their families to enjoy some valuable time together, but we managed to raise a fantastic amount of money for a great cause. It was such a unique experience for many of us, and everybody thoroughly enjoyed the evening.”

softer alternative that fit easily over our standard Waterproof rolls. Soft Knit material provides maximum comfort – ideal for the colder seasons and can also fit snug over our waterproof rolls for maximum protection. The Carer reader exclusive …. Celebrate 30 years with C&S, when you purchase a Waterproof or Soft Knit covered T-Roll or Log Roll you can purchase a spare cover for just £30.00 inc VAT. This offer will run until 21st December 2021. Quote offer code CARER30 when placing your order. It is recommended you seek professional advice to select the correct product depending on your needs. Please visit our website for full returns policy and further information. Contact us on 01424 853331 or visit www.cands-seating.co.uk to request or download a brochure, pricelist or order form, request an individualised quotation, speak to an advisor or to place an order.

Jackie from Etheldred House Joins in with Super Sensory 1K When the team at Etheldred House Care Home in Histon heard that Power2Inspire were hosting their third SuperSensory1K, a 1,000m loop at Histon Recreation Ground, it's a truly inclusive event, as you can travel the distance in any way you want, including walking, wheeling, and running. They knew straight away that Jackie who resides in Etheldred House Care Home would love to take part and when they asked her she gave them a warm smile saying, "yes she would love to." Not only was it a pleasant walk but to add to the fun there were five sensory stations along the route: celebrating smell, touch, sight, hearing and taste. Jackie stopped at the smell sensory station and she was able to try and guess some of the smells which consisted of lemon, smelling salts, fresh cut grass, lavender and many more. Jackie enjoyed the sight station as there were lots of pretty patterns to see like the old-fashioned kaleidoscope, which she enjoyed watching the patterns revolve.

At the touch station there was mini golf and Jackie was thrilled to see the children all having a go. Sound station there was a variety of musical instruments to play and Jackie enjoyed this and the staff all joined in to making some noise. Taste station was the favourite as a selection of cheese, olives and fruit were on offer to taste and Jackie loved this and went straight for the blue vein cheese. During the walk Jackie enjoyed picking up many items of interest such as conkers, feathers and leaves, which she wanted to show her friends when they got back to Etheldred House. When Jackie saw the finish line, she suggested that they should finish with a sprint which was met with a round of applause and was handed a medal for finishing. It had been a lovely morning and Jackie said she would love to do it all again.






THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 41

CYBER SECURITY

Why Cyber Insurance Should Be Part of Your Risk Management Programme As our reliance on the digital world increases it is no real wonder that cybercrime is on the increase, and this has been clearly evident in the last twelve months. For the opportunistic cybercriminal, it’s been a good time to commit cybercrime, as we have moved away from our usual routines and reliable systems, leaving an exploitable gap in our security as we quickly adapted to new ways of working. According to Police data analysed by cyber security company Nexor, there was a 31% increase in cyber related cases over May and June last summer. The most common attack occurred through email or social media, and accounted for 53% of all attacks on businesses, leading to substantial multi-million pound losses. Healthcare, financial institutions, manufacturing, real estate, and education were the most targeted industries. The Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2020, released by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) revealed that nearly half of all businesses in the UK had reported cyber security breaches or attacks in the last 12 months but only 32% have insurance against such events. Whether a big or small-scale event, a cyber-attack is likely to have serious consequences for any business – shutting systems, deleting data, preventing data access or stopping them from trading altogether. Dealing with the fall out of a cyber-attack can be complicated and stressful, not to mention time-consuming and potentially expensive.

TYPES OF CYBER ATTACK Cyber-attacks can take many forms, all engineered to get the victim to disclose information or take action, or to infect systems with malicious software. Phishing, malware attacks and ransomware pose a threat to all businesses. It’s common to think that cyber threats against businesses come from unrelated hackers, cyber-attacks or ransomware and are big events, but sometimes they can be more subtle and come from sources a little closer to home.

employees, your reputation and may ultimately affect the future of your business. Having a comprehensive contingency and business interruption plan in place along with adequate insurance will help you to address and quickly overcome any fallout from a cyber-attack. A robust plan is vital to make sure you meet your legal obligations regarding data breaches and to reassure your customers.

THE BENEFITS OF CYBER INSURANCE

There are four categories that cyber threats against a business typically originate; insider threats, human error or negligence, external threats and third-party threats. Wherever the threat originates the bottom line is how you to respond. Have you thought about how you would continue to run your care home if you lost access to all your data? You could lose access to client records and supplier data, order information, diary appointments, financial data, your website and more. If you are held to ransom for access to patient files, the financial consequences could be significant. Additionally, you may be affected by reputational damage, which could affect existing relationships and damage future prosperity. You may need to rebuild and replace lost systems or create a new website. And, if a data breach occurred you are likely to face significant fines from the Information Commissioner’s Office. All of the above will require money, time and resources and need to be addressed in a timely manner to help you retain customers,

Cyber liability insurance is a must for any care home business because it provides you with protection and peace of mind, should the worst happen. It will help against denial of service, which may occur with ransomware, the recovery from computer virus damage, which may have resulted in a significant loss of data, and other data breaches such as the loss of a memory stick or laptop. Getting assistance quickly and from reputable, knowledgeable and reliable sources will be key in ensuring your business can continue to operate with minimal disruption. If your care home holds data on a computer system, even with antivirus software in place, you can still be vulnerable to a breach. Cyber liability insurance is relatively inexpensive and will provide you and your business with complete reassurance in the face of a data breach crisis. Every business is different and will have specific needs, so make sure you get advice for your unique situation and requirements. Don’t wait until you have experienced a cyber-attack to put measures in place, be proactive and help protect your business now. Barnes Commercial Insurance Broker are specialists in arranging robust insurance for those operating in the care home sector. As independent advisers they provide impartial advice on the best solution for your specific needs. Telephone: 01480 272727 Email: enquiries@barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk www.barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk

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PAGE 44 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

CATERING FOR CARE Has The Pandemic Created A Permanent Change In The Way Catering Operates? Rupert Lynch, Client Relationship Manager and Executive Chef at allmanhall, the independently owned food procurement expert, discusses whether the pandemic has led to permanent changes in the way catering operators work. Have caterers adapted and improved their operations as a result, or are they likely to return to the old ways of doing things.

REVIEWING STAFF AND OPERATIONAL PROCESSES

Circa 18 months since the start of the pandemic, catering establishments are now well versed in the intricacies of ‘Covid compliance’. Kitchens have adapted to an ever-changing environment that was outside of their control and devised systems that could cope with the guidelines laid down by the Government. Following the relaxing of all rules in England, catering teams have undertaken risk assessments to ascertain whether all or some of the changes made over the previous year are required or whether they could adapt and implement some of the ‘enforced’ changes to enable a better and more efficient operation. Catering teams are still hesitant to make too many alterations, but many have relished the ‘new normal’ and many changes will now become permanent. These include the way the canteen or foodservice facility is laid out, how food is served (self-serve or served) the number of items on the menu and myriad of other changes that albeit were previously enforced, have now proved to be highly beneficial. For example, structuring lunch

service in schools, care homes and offices, to enable reduced volumes in canteens has been substantiated as a very successful practice, however this does have an impact on staffing hours in order to cope with the longer lunch service. Another benefit has been the introduction of split services, utilising servery counters to mirror a like-for-like service across the canteen, the offering has been reduced. In some instances, this has meant the lunch period allocated has been maintained, but at the same time held additional costs despite no increases regarding labour hours or shifts. One key consideration caterers have had to deal with was addressing the risk of a complete kitchen shutdown due to one or more staff testing positive. This has been a very real concern and limitation; a number of kitchen teams we have spoken to have stated they will be maintaining a ‘bubble’ status, whilst still trying to ensure an element of flexibility. Keeping teams working in bubbles has so far meant that some catering teams have been able to maintain a service even during the “ping-demic” of summer 2021. The indication at the time of writing is that many are looking to revert to pre-pandemic operational processes for their foodservice, including the use of crockery and cutlery in place of disposables.

SUPPLY CHAIN CONSIDERATIONS

Supply chain challenges and disruption continued into the summer period and has been further exacerbated by the shortage of HGV & LGV delivery drivers and issues surrounding availability of product. Catering operations must ensure they have adequate stock going into the autumn and are going to need be prepared to change menus, last minute. Service level agreements with suppliers are now subject to increased scrutiny and operators are going to fair best by being understanding of

Major NEW Product Launches Make a Change for the Better! Keeping healthy is increasingly seen as a social responsibility with many consumers now being motivated to protect their health not just for themselves but also for the ‘greater good’. In research that Major carried out, a staggering 93% described strengthening their immune system as important. That’s why at Major they have been busy creating an industry first… A gravy which

not only tastes amazing but is a great source of Vitamin D! Major’s Instant Gravy is allergen free, suitable for vegetarians and vegans, meets 2024 salt targets and is available in two varieties, perfect for meat and poultry dishes. Want to find out more and try for yourself, simply drop us an email at: higham_ferrers.samples@givaudan.com or give us a call on 01933 356012 quoting The Carer for your free sample. See the advert on the previous page for details.

the situation, aware that they may not receive deliveries within their agree window. From allmanhall’s insight into how both clients and suppliers are adapting and planning ahead, it seems that the majority of catering teams are managing this well, communicating, showing flexibility and placing orders day 1 for day 3 as a minimum.

HYGIENE

By their nature, kitchens are designed with good hygiene in mind and the pandemic forced an even more rigorous cleaning regime. Areas to keep a focus on are key touch points, cleaning regularly and deep cleaning the whole kitchen area at least once a week. A number of clients have spoken of the changes they have made to their shift and staffing requirements to facilitate this, and the extra training that has been required, too.

OPPORTUNITIES AND THE FUTURE

The majority of catering operators allmanhall has spoken to have indicated they will revert back to pre-pandemic levels and processes for some operational activities, notably the way the menu is designed. During the pandemic, menus were reduced to cope with the extra demand on staffing levels and time taken to pre-package food for delivery across campuses, for example. That said, having discussed this with a number of catering teams, they have largely indicated that although there will be more choice back on the menus, they will tailor it in such a way that the production methods are no more labour intensive than they have been over the last 18-month period. Operators have taken this opportunity to review their existing procedures and practises and implemented changes that they may have been previously considering, as improvements. See the advert on the facing page for details.

Cracking New Egg Dishes For Care Homes from Chef Martin McKee

Martin McKee, former NACC Care Chef of the Year, has created a series of new recipe videos showing how British Lion eggs can be used to create exciting, creative, and nutrient dense dishes to support the needs of care home residents. The recipes have been created to reflect the growing trend for menu simplification that has emerged as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting staff and skills shortages, as well as incorporating nutritious ingredients in an original way. The five recipes have been developed in association with a specialist dietician to meet various nutritional requirements of residents, including undernourishment, dementia and dysphagia. The dishes include both savoury and sweet recipes and include Chicken and Leek Stuffed Mushroom; Deconstructed Spanish Omelette; Smoked Turkey, Cranberry and Egg Fried Sandwich; Lemon Meringue Pie; and a Custard Filled Doughnut. All the recipes are designed to serve 12 or more people and are easy to follow. British Lion eggs are approved by The Food Standards Agency to be eaten runny or

even raw by vulnerable groups, including care home residents. Before the change in advice for Lion eggs, care homes had to restrict the way they served eggs, but the change in 2017 meant that care home residents could once again enjoy a dippy egg, and benefit from a range of other nutritious, and delicious egg-based dishes. Martin said: ‘’Eggs are a must on care home menus and are a fantastically versatile ingredient. I have created a range of savoury and sweet recipes, calling on familiar favourites with a modern touch. The recipes I’ve created highlight the nutritional benefits of eggs, as they contain key vitamins and minerals and are high in protein which is essential for care home residents’ diets. I have also ensured that the recipes are straightforward and easy to replicate so that they can be enjoyed in care homes of any scale.” The video recipes are available to view on British Lion eggs YouTube channel and can also be found on www.egginfo.co.uk/tv See the advert on page 32 for further details.



PAGE 46 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

PRODUCTS AND SERVICES Uniquely Adapted Clothing By Adaptawear At Adaptawear we specialise in uniquely adapted clothing for day and night. Our garments are designed to help improve independent and assisted dressing, removing the limitations of conventional clothes. A key product in our night time range is the Iona Nightie; fully opening at the back and at both shoulders, it can be put on from a lying or seated position. It ensures dignified toileting due to it’s open-back with generous overlap. Another unique product to Adaptawear are the All-InOne Pyjamas, these feature shoulder to ankle and between the legs zips. These pyjamas are designed to enable carers to dress a person from a lying position. They are suitable for people who have a tendency to inappropriately disrobe and help avoid picking and smearing behaviour. They also allow easy and quick

access for toileting. Our day time range is particularly popular with those who can independently dress with a few discreet adaptations. These include; velcro/magnetic shirts, front fastening bras, pull on elasticated waist trousers and discreet open back day and nightwear. Adaptawear clothing can help improve the life of those living with a variety of conditions and many of our items are available with VAT relief. 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. See the advert on page 3 for details.

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 4.

The Power of Scent It has been known for many decades that fragrance has the power to evoke emotions and memories, whether it is smelling a perfume that reminds you of an occasion in the past or a loved one that perhaps wore the fragrance or bought it for you, scent can bring back all of those happy memories and occasions. Your olfactory system is responsible for your sense of smell. Often called the “emotional brain”, it can instantly prompt powerful responses and memories. For instance, the scent of lemon might make you think of the lemon tree in your back garden growing up, but for another person it might be associated with the cleaning products their parents used in their childhood home. Having lost both parents to dementia, I remember going to see my mam in her care home and presenting her with a perfume that she wore occasionally for special occasions, at this stage she did not know my name, but I sprayed the perfume into the air and within seconds she told me what the perfume was and then over the next 30 minutes she was reminiscing of the times gone past, this had the same effect when we played her music to her, the memories and emotions came flooding back. Whether you use essential oils, fragrance oils or a mixture of both the scent can play a major part in your wellbeing and mood, for instance the aroma of fresh citrus and fresh green notes will make you feel uplifted, awake and fresh,

while rich fresh floral notes will give you a feeling of happiness, and spring and summer, while oriental will give you a feeling of warmth and a relaxed state of mind. At scentworks we offer a substantial range of essential oils, fragrance oils and formulations of both to suit all environments and needs whether it is for communal areas, washrooms, waste areas, offices, personal rooms, entrances etc. Our oils are all manufactured within the UK and are all IFRA controlled and compliant. Our scent diffusion equipment is discreet but also stylish, very quiet and very low maintenance, requiring only 1-2 service visits per year on self-replenished units which helps to keep costs to a minimum, from as little £1 per day. We have a selection of scent diffusion equipment with a wide range of coverage from small tabletop units suitable for an office environment, floor or wall mounted options for medium sized areas and up to larger units that connect directly to an air conditioning system above a roof void. All our scent diffusion equipment is programmable, which means that once set up you can just enjoy the fragrance not having to worry about switching the machine off as it will happen automatically. We offer a wide range of pricing solutions, whether this would be renting or purchasing of equipment along with fragrance and equipment packages, we are totally flexible to suit your requirements. Visit www.scentworkssolutions.com or see the advert on page 12.

CareZips Dignity Trousers ™

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

Specialist Dementia Bathroom Design Guide Launched by AKW AKW, a leading provider of accessible home solutions, is pleased to announce the launch of a new guide to creating dementia-friendly bathrooms. Produced with advice and support from specialist dementia design advisers at the University of Stirling’s Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC), it offers best practice guidance on designing this important space. The bathroom is one of the most challenging and dangerous places for a person with dementia and Dementia Friendly Design aims to compensate for the changes people experience when living with this condition. Importantly, a dementia-friendly bathroom doesn’t need to cost more than a standard bathroom adaptation, but the products and guidelines regarding colour etc. need to be followed to ensure maximum safety and comfort. Lynsey Hutchinson, Senior Interior Designer at DSDC, University of Stirling, comments: “The bathroom, despite being one of the smallest rooms to design in any building, is one of the most complicated. Indeed, there are at least ten tonal considerations within a bathroom or shower room. These include tonal contrast

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 or see page 10.

Scrubs UK and Uniforms UK

Scrubs UK and Uniforms UK are part of Uniform Group UK Ltd suppliers of Medical and Healthcare Uniforms. Our main aim is to provide the best products at the most competitive prices and are proud to be an ‘NHS approved supplier’. We pride ourselves on our excellent reputation and customer service and firmly believe that building relationships with our customer is key to offering the best service possible. Our uniforms meet infection-control requirements and offer the best in durability and comfort. We stock a wide range of styles, colours and sizes to suit everyone. Our own brand ‘Scrubs UK Premium’ range is one of our best sellers offering all day comfort together with durability and of course style! WE ARE MORE THAN HAPPY TO SEND YOU A FREE SAMPLE OF OUR SCRUBS UK PREMIUM SCRUBS SET PERSONALISED WITH YOUR LOGO FOR YOU TO SEE FOR YOURSELVES!

Renray Healthcare

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 or see the advert on page 5.

for surfaces / critical planes such as walls, floors, doors, skirtings, sanitary ware and toilet seats which should achieve a minimum contrast of 30 points LRV (Light Reflectance Value) in order to see one object against another.” Stuart Reynolds, Head of Product and Marketing at AKW explains why the new dementia guide has been developed: “We have worked with the University of Stirling to translate the complex issue of dementia into practical design points that can be easily applied in any bathroom adaptation. The guide details the seven major dementia challenges that impact bathroom design and gives specific advice on what to install and where, to help overcome these issues. From flooring colour to lighting placement, the guide has it all.” For health and care professionals, specifiers, relatives, contractors and social landlords wanting to find out more, AKW’s Guide to Creating Dementia-Friendly Bathrooms is available to download from https://www.akw-ltd.co.uk/wpcontent/uploads/2021/08/3121AKW-Dementia-guide-12pp_LR.pdf See the advert on page 9 for further details.

Renray Healthcare has been producing high quality furniture for over 50 years and is one of the UK’s largest and leading suppliers to the healthcare sector. Whether you require a fast efficient delivery of quality furniture or a full room installation and fitting service, we have the experience and resources to handle your contract. We manufacture and assemble our products in our own purpose built factories in Cheshire and Europe to British Standards. Hence we are able to ensure your furniture is produced to the highest quality, working with you to plan and meet your projects time schedule and budget. We understand you are purchasing furniture that is fit for purpose, stylish and will continue to perform well into the future, which is why we design and build our

We stock all major brands including, Cherokee, Dickies, Behrens, Alexandra, Koi, Orange Standard, Simki and Skechers. Healthcare uniforms come in all shapes and sizes, and we sell them all! We can also provide you with your catering staff, maintenance and reception uniforms. PERSONALISATION OF UNIFORMS IS OUR SPECIALITY! All embroidery is carried out in-house so we are able to react quickly to your order. For a limited time, we are offering FREE EMBROIDERY SET UP (normally £20) to all new customers. You will always speak personally to a member of our team when you call who are more than happy to help you with your requirements. Call today on 01270 814141 or visit www.scrubsuk.com or www.uniforms-uk.com See the advert on page 16.

furniture with you in mind. Telephone: +44 (0)1606 593456, Email: info@renrayhealthcare.com, www.renrayhealthcare.com or see the advert on page 3 for details.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 47

CLEANING AND HYGIENE The Cleaning Show Returns post-pandemic future.

LESSONS LEARNT DURING THE GLOBAL PANDEMIC

The global pandemic has seen cleanliness and sanitation become a top priority for business owners and consumers alike. Helping showcase the latest advancements in cleaning practices and technologies, The Cleaning Show returns to ExCeL, London from 2-4 November 2021. The show, organised by the British Cleaning Council and Quartz Business Media, is set to attract more than 7,000 senior cleaning professionals from across the contract cleaning, facilities management (FM), healthcare, hospitality, retail, and public services sectors – making it the UK’s largest and most important event in the cleaning and hygiene sector. Attendees will be able to connect, learn and discover new products, services, and suppliers at a critical time as businesses across the UK prioritise cleaning protocols to ensure returning staff and customers remain safe.

Reflecting on lessons learnt during the global pandemic and celebrating the hard work and achievements of cleaning professionals across the UK, The Cleaning Show conference makes an eagerly awaited return. It will provide a platform for attendees to learn and discuss the latest developments, and the critical next steps for an industry on the frontline of public health and safety. Industry experts will come together to discuss the role of cleaning in protecting public health and safety.

DEMONSTRATING EXCELLENCE

PREVENTATIVE CLEANING IN A POST-PANDEMIC FUTURE

With new and recently launched innovations on display, attendees can find the solutions to help them meet the increasing demands for heightened cleanliness and sanitation in a

Haigh - Discover the Benefits of Disposable Bedpans Working with care operators nationwide, Haigh helps simplify pad and pan disposal. Clients have reduced or eliminated waste bag collections, resulting in cleaner, nicer sluice rooms. Haigh can minimise the hassle involved in change, with delivery planning, installations, staff training, and ongoing servicing capabilities; so you can focus on infection control and a great patient experience. The Haigh team has been working alongside care providers to adapt to new ways of delivering maintenance, service and user training to fit with on site teams and the additional constraints that the latest infection control and test procedures bring. This has been well received, for

example one multi-site care operator has also achieved significant operational cost benefits by moving a wide rage of maintenance services in-house, including waste disposal, and benefited from the expert support that Haigh have provided. With an in depth understanding of the end to end process for patient waste disposal, right through to the point where it is no longer the responsibility of the site, we know what is best for drainage and compliant effluent as well as the importance of reliability of the waste disposal machines themselves. For more information on how the Haigh team can help improve your pad and pan disposal processes please call or email the team at info@haigh.co.uk

Angloplas Dispensers Help Reduce the Risk of Cross Infection Angloplas are a UK manufacturer who specialise in producing dispensers for the health and hygiene industry. Although these are designed to keep the workplace tidy and uncluttered they are, more importantly, built knowing the control of healthcareassociated infections (HCAIs) are a priority for healthcare providers, and who are employing a combination of infection prevention and control strategies, including hand hygiene, cleaning, training and the adoption of new technologies, to tackle the problem. As a result, a wide range of infection control products and technologies are emerging on the market, including antimicrobial technology. Angloplas’ range of dispensers are produced in the

world’s first proven Antimicrobial PVC with silver ion technology and which is 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.

New for 2021, the Cleaning & Support Services Association will be hosting its 2021 CSSA Innovation Showcase in a dedicated pavilion at the event to highlight and celebrate the industry’s most innovative cleaning products, services and initiatives. Registration for The Cleaning Show 2021 is now open. To register today and find further information on this year’s programme, visit https://cleaningshow.co.uk/


PAGE 48 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

CLEANING AND HYGIENE Power Driving Productivity In today’s world, the cleaning industry faces complex challenges and increased demands where cleaning is about keeping people safe. Increasing productivity is the key to meeting these demands and increasing standards. The new NX300 Pro Cordless network from Numatic delivers professional level cordless performance to a versatile and expanding range. Quicker, safer and more convenient, switching to Pro Cordless raises productivity levels, saving time and money. An extensive research and development programme utilising the latest battery technologies has resulted in the newly developed 30 cell design, delivering a 60% increase in available energy. The NX300 battery pack has been engineered and test-

ed for extended commercial use. Investing in the right cordless network will drive cost efficiency and return on investment. Networked solutions reduce purchase and maintenance costs. Users can specify and ultimately reduce charger and battery requirements, delivering up to a 50% savings compared to standalone cordless fleets. The NX range includes both cylinder and backpack vacuums while floorcare is covered with the ever popular TTB1840NX scrubber dryer and the newest additions with the 244NX compact scrubber dryer and RSU150NX Sanitise Pro. We look forward to seeing you at the Care Show, Hall 3A, Stand D50. To find our more visit: www.numatic.co.uk/nx300

Brookvale Care Home Relies on Rensair to Deliver 24x7 Clean Air

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

Air purification specialist Rensair has supplied Brookvale care home, located in Prestwich near Manchester, with portable, hospital-grade air purifiers to help prevent the transmission of Covid-19. Brookvale is a care home for adults with learning and physical disabilities, providing a calm, relaxed place to live and visit. “That calm and tranquility was challenged when the pandemic hit”, said Carl Richmond, CEO at Brookvale. “It became clear that we needed to put measures in place to ensure that we’re better equipped to deal with further potential outbreaks.” After conducting research, Brookvale sought advice from Rensair and, following a site visit to assess communal areas and occupancy levels, received a proposal based on the company’s modular, portable air purifiers. Rensair's patented technology, originally developed to meet the strict air quality requirements of Scandinavian hospitals, has since been adopted worldwide by doctor and dental practices, care homes and hospitals, including several NHS trusts. “Rensair’s pre-Covid experience

with hospitals added credibility and we had some prior knowledge of UV disinfection because of our hydrotherapy pool”, said Carl. It stands to reason that trapping pathogens with HEPA before destroying them with UVC light is more effective than fly-by-kill methods on moving targets.” In a test to determine the Rensair unit’s performance in reducing the concentration of Covid-19 particles in the air (using MS2 bacteriophages as a proxy for SARSCoV-2) , the Danish Technological Institute recorded a particle reduction rate of 99.98 % in 15 minutes and above 99.99 % in 30 minutes. Furthermore, the test reported 100% elimination of virus particles on the filter, with zero traces detected. “We now feel that the health of those within our care at Brookvale is properly protected and their families are reassured”, concluded Carl. “Equally important is the protection of mental wellbeing. For our clients, that means being allowed to continue their scheduled activities as well as enjoying unrestricted family visits.” See the advert on this page for details.




THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 51

LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS Forbes Professional Ensures that Care Homes Meet Stringent Industry Requirements For any care home, there are key considerations when it comes to their in-house laundry operation. Firstly, the process must be entirely compliant with CQC and the Department of Health, secondly it must adhere to the industry’s stringent WRAS requirements. In order to maintain the requisite hygiene control levels, is imperative to source appropriate commercial laundry equipment. It is also essential to ensure best practice through the sorting, segregation, transportation, processing and storage of all laundry items. The Department of Health’s Technical Memorandum (HTM) 01-04 requires that, for appropriate decontamination of linen, care homes must employ both thermal and chemical disinfection. Care homes also need to ensure that staff are trained in using the laundry equipment. Should the CQC find that a care home falls short of these requirements, the home may be placed into special measures, shut down or prosecuted. WRAS deems all care homes to be high risk Category

LaundryTec

5 for the water contamination risk and washing machines therefore need to include a backflow prevention system. It is therefore imperative to use commercial laundry equipment. Forbes Professional is currently celebrating 95 years of service. A well-established family business with a nationwide infrastructure, Forbes provides care homes across the UK with highly efficient WRAS and CQC compliant laundry solutions. Proud partners of market leaders Miele, they offer the highest quality of both product and service. Forbes has a team of qualified in-house and gasregistered engineers, and all work is fully CHAS approved. They carefully specify the right equipment for each requirement and support clients with comprehensive user training and an inclusive same/ next day service response. info@forbes-professional.co.uk Telephone 0345 070 2335

LaundryTec is the culmination of 40 years’ experience in the laundry equipment market by its founder Jeremy Hartigan. Based in Chester we offer support for our own Lavamac brand and all other makes. Uniquely LaundryTec will offer support for any laundry equipment, with reliable, cost-effective after sales support across the UK via our in-house service department Supported by Alliance Laundry (The World’s Biggest manufacturer) we distribute the Lavamac range of equipment that’s unique range of features include, Data Tracked Operation, Auto-Weight loading, Automatic chemical control, Simple to use controls and market leading efficiency in energy consumption make it a market leader The Air Sourced Heat Pump Dryers cost less to dry

18kg of washing than boiling a kettle! Auto- Chemical control and Auto weight Control calculates the energy required to the actual load and can control the chemical usage and offer reduction of up to 50% in chemical usage! Every replacement machine includes Installation, commissioning and as standard 24 months Parts and Labour Warranty. CMM customers will receive a 36-month warranty as Standard If you want a friendly amenable face that can deliver on their promises let LaundryTec offer you the kind of support we offer Bupa, Care UK, Abbey Healthcare, and many others to your home? From Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM) to fully comprehensive cover and reactive support properly maintained, and supported laundry equipment should be a cost effective, relaxed part of the care homes operation? Check out our website www.laundrytec.com to see what of customers say info@laundrytec.com

FowlerUK are Back!

ments. We also offer tailor made finance packages to suit any budget. Contact us today for further information on 01200 444430 or by email sales@fowleruk.com.

Revolution Max Ltd has a change of name and owner. We’re pleased to announce that Revolution Max Ltd will now be known as Fowler UK (Trading) Limited and is back in the hands of the original owner, David Fowler. Fowler UK are a nationwide supplier of commercial laundry and catering equipment. With a team of fully trained, gas certified field-base engineers, FowlerUK are a onestop-shop for all your servicing and maintenance require-

See the advert on page 32.

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

LaundryTec Ltd offer a unique approach to laundry equipment

We don’t want to replace equipment or sign you into a long-term agreement. LaundryTec want to support your existing equipment, through PPM, Gas Safe Compliance and Quality emergency support.

Quality, Innovation and Support

BEFORE

We are also Lavamac distributors

www.laundrytec.com

0151 317 3127

AFTER

info@laundrytec.com


PAGE 52 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION

Why 4,438 Daily Falls In UK Care Homes Deserve Our Attention

A recent report,’ “Responding to falls in care homes: two innovations” by Dr Mark Hawker and River Rea from Involve, discusses how best practice in post fall management can provide time and cost savings to the wider health and social care system. Combining benefits of assistive lifting technology and video-based clinical support could return costs savings of up to £3,911 per fall, whilst also safeguarding residents’ lives. Across the 15,000 + care homes registered by the Care Quality Commission there are between 270,000 – 1,620,000 falls per year. As one of the most frequently reported accidents among residents, falls represent a pressing issue for providers of care, particularly as demand for places is expected to rise as the population ages. Author, Dr Mark Hawker says, “the risk factors for falls in care setting are diverse and the multiplicity of elements influencing the likelihood of falls makes them incredibly difficult to eliminate entirely. For the individual, the consequences of a fall are numerous and distressing, while the repetitive lifting requirement of carers puts them at risk of musculoskeletal injury. “The pilot studies we’ve examined demonstrate that by giving care home staff the tools to empower safe lifting reduces the time residents spend on the floor after a fall waiting for an ambulance and help to arrive. Organised and safe post fall care is better for the resident and more cost effective for the NHS.”

The report goes on to discuss the importance of reducing the risk of spreading infectious diseases by eliminating avoidable contacts. There are clear benefits of using technologies that reduce the number of external contact such as those that would be required to pick up a resident following a fall. While difficult to quantify, the reduction of contacts with healthcare workers such as paramedics, GPs and district nurses with residents is seen as essential during a pandemic. Mangar Health CEO Simon Claridge adds, “we have been working with NHS Ambulance Trusts for nearly 20 years and yet this report has been incredibly eye opening for us. We know lifting fallen care home residents is a daily challenge to prioritising ambulance calls, yet equipment and technology could easily lift the considerable pressures they are under and save the NHS millions annually. “We would like to call on NHS England, NICE and CQC to review the dynamics involved in a resident fall detailed in this report and consider alternative care models in a post pandemic environment.” Anyone wishing to receive a copy of the report should email hello@involve.vc. For more information email cbirt@mangarhealth.com Mangar Health Tel: 01544 267674 See the advert on the facing page for more about Mangar.

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

FALL SAVERS ® WIRELESS MONITOR

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

use one monitor with two sensor pads simultaneously and support for many new wireless devices.

Benefits include:

Safer for patients; less work for staff Bed and chair pads available One monitor works with two sensor pads Integrates with most nurse call systems A variety of options, including: Call button Pager Floor sensor mat Wireless door/window exit alerts

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

Features include:

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 53

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION 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 2.

Silent Running - Tranquility in Care Homes Quiet and calm care homes ensure that residents are able to live in a more relaxing and pleasant home environment. Similarly, carers and staff find that they too benefit from reduced stress when working in a home where noise levels are kept to a minimum. There are many environmental factors that can affect those sensitive to their surroundings, particularly those suffering from dementia, these can be fluctuations in ambient temperature, light, and of course noise. Repetitive and high levels of noise can originate from a number of internal and external sources, for example, telephones ringing, loud conversations in corridors, and call bells sounding, often one of the largest contributors to increasing the levels of stress and discomfort in residents. A published study by the University of Stirling stated that unanswered Nurse Call (Call Bell) alarms can be one of the most common causes of stress in dementia sufferers. The University recommends “fitting call alarms which alert nurses but do not resonate throughout the whole building. Alarms can be particularly disconcerting as they may encourage the person with dementia to respond or investigate what the matter is. At the very least the loss of sleep will compromise a person’s ability to concentrate. It can affect their attention levels and capacity to cope, as well as being detrimental to their overall state of wellbeing. Personal paging systems are preferable to bells and buzzers.” Modern Nurse Call systems can incorporate a number of methods to reduce their impact in a care home. These include zoning whereby there are sepa-

rate alarm types used depending upon the location of the call. In these circumstances, dementia sufferers and those vulnerable to noise can be located in one “zone” whist less vulnerable residents live in an alternative “zone”. Each “zone” can operate different call tones, warning lights or other methods to alert when help is required Reducing noise levels is essential to create a tranquil environment for residents. Pagers have been around for many years, are a relatively simple and cost-effective measure in reducing the levels of noise, and can be added to most Nurse Call systems. Smart Mobile Devices are now becoming more commonplace for care home staff and hold a variety of apps for care planning, e-medication, etc. Many Courtney Thorne clients are now utilising the “Go” app with their Nurse Call system. With the “Go” app, nurse call alarms are delivered immediately and silently straight to the handsets, alerting the individual carers to all Nurse call alarms without creating any general alarm sound and rarely disturbing the rest of the residents in the home. Calmer residents ultimately means that staff are less stressed also, this creates a happier workplace where morale is greatly improved, staff are retained and CQC ratings improve. Clearly, the positive ramifications of a quiet Care Home run deep. Get in touch today to find out how we can help your home become a quieter, calmer, and more tranquil environment. For more information email us at: info@c-t.co.uk

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

www.nursecallsystems.co.uk


PAGE 54 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

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 Systems from 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 28years 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 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. Take the ongoing cost out of your operation with our unique return to base service exchange policy and low cost of ownership along with flexible finance options. 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.

NEW PRODUCTS

NEW - Glove friendly, touch screen display. Bed Angel – see advert on this page Our new and innovative falls detection system The Bed Angel ensures overnight bed monitoring and protection against falls, wandering and confusion. For further details: 01568 610 016 or email sales@arm.uk.com

Edison Telecom - Specialist Solutions For Your Nurse Call Systems 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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 55

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Check EU Employees Right To Work, Warns Bizimply Care employers will need to keep clear records of their team members’ immigration and right-to-work status as the UK moves into the post-Brexit ‘hostile environment’ from 1 July. Care workforce specialist Bizimply is warning businesses that they need a clear and accessible record of every employee’s status in order to demonstrate compliance with the regulations. Under UK law, employers face imprisonment and unlimited fines for knowingly employing someone who does not have the right to work in the UK. Employers using Bizimply’s suite of workforce management software can easily and confidentially record all the necessary status confirmation and supporting documentation for employees, and make it available to check if required. Employers can be jailed for five years and pay an unlimited fine if found guilty of employing someone who they know or had ‘reasonable cause to believe’ did not have the right to work in the UK.

Details of the Settled Status regulations are at www.gov.uk/eusettledstatus. An employer toolkit is at www.gov.uk/government/collections/eu-settlementscheme-employer-toolkit See the advert this page or visit www.bizimply.com

Global Software Solutions

Leecare is a leading UK and international aged care sector software system. The Platinum 5 (P5) system supports all CQC standards for optimal resident and operational management. Designed by aged care expert staff and tailored specifically to aged care organisations, P5 assists with predicting, recording and providing evidence for all resident and business needs in one user-friendly system. Leecare’s comprehensive software suite encompasses all clinical and managerial requirements on one platform assisting with the management of clinical risk and freeing up more time for staff to spend with residents all whilst exceeding CQC requirements.

WHAT MAKES US THE EXPERTS?

Our extensive sector knowledge and experience as a result of more than 28 years in the aged care business, positions Leecare to be the software solution of choice across five continents. Our global client base is built of 900+ government, small independent services, and multi-facility corporate organisations in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, UK, and China.

Our senior management team have years of collective experience working in, consulting to, and managing care organisations. This has led us to develop the P5 suite – an unparalleled clinical, care, lifestyle, medication, operations, and financial management software solution specifically created for the health and social care sector.

CUSTOMISATION

Leecare’s comprehensive Platinum 5.0 program is easily customised to meet specific organisational needs. Offering as much or as little flexibility as desired, P5 assessment content across the suite and linked Apps can be modified to provide clients with reassurance that the software is fit for purpose. Integral to the program is a specialised form and report builder which enables easy tailoring of the program. Organisations can build or modify assessments, monitoring charts care plans and reports as well as change default and individual resident settings ensuring optimal function and success. Visit www.leecare.co.uk for further information.

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


PAGE 56 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Is It Time To Upgrade Your Workforce Management Technology? Covid-19 has undeniably challenged care homes and will permanently reshape how many operate. The pandemic sparked the biggest and fastest transformation of the workplace. Automation, digitalisation and innovation to fit with this new world is happening at a pace that we have never seen before. It’s clear that things are not going to simply return to the way they were, instead we all need to look to the future and re-evaluate systems and processes. Here are five areas that workforce management technology could assist your care home.

HEALTH & SAFETY

Workforce management technology gives you the ability to better manage the health and safety of your employees. You have the tools to ensure optimal shift patterns and rotations that take into account health and safety requirements, procedures and regulations. Your system can tell you things like - who is working where and when? Who in their teams they have been in contact with? If they have been self-isolating - when will it be safe for

them to return to work? Do they need a return-to-work interview? At the touch of a button, you have all the information you need to need to answer these and multiple other questions. Workforce Planning & Optimisation Workforce management planning and decisions require accurate realtime information. It is extremely difficult to manage your workforce effectively without having detailed information on employee time, attendance, absences, activities, skills and scheduling. This pandemic has led to an extreme disruption around workforce management planning and optimisation. Care homes now need to find ways to ensure that their workforce is optimised under different conditions and a good system can automate many of these processes for you.

Giving employees Control The most successful organisations today are the ones that are putting their employees in control. They view them as their internal customers and are dedicated to serving their needs as well as the needs of the business. By doing this, they foster a culture of empowered, engaged and motivated staff who are more satisfied, productive and loyal. With the use of selfservice solutions, employees can easily organise and manage their own time, attendance, schedules, annual leave, absences and personal details. This in turn reduces queries, calls and emails to line managers, HR and Payroll Departments.

MANAGING NEW WAYS OF WORKING

As we move to a post Covid-19 world, it’s expected that new business priorities will lead to the reshaping of teams and upgrading of workforce procedures and policies that will take into account new ways of working. In order to do this, you will require reliable workforce data to determine budgets and costs. Having a proper handle on workforce costs and productivity will be critical to the smooth operation of your care home. To find out more about how Softworks solutions could benefit your care home visit www.softworks.com or see the advert on page 15.

Even before Covid-19, employers were realising the benefits of introducing more flexible working options. Benefits including; increased productivity, reduced absenteeism and attracting and retaining talent. A good system will give you a fully automated way to record hours worked, maintain flexi balances and manage planned/unplanned absences. Employees can log attendance on a PC, tablet or mobile either by time or by honour-based email timesheets. No need for spreadsheets and no manual processes saving time, eliminating errors and reducing administration.

PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE

everyLIFE Will Be Challenging the Status Quo at The Care Show Event season is in full swing and the team at everyLIFE Technologies are enjoying every minute of it. Seeing customers, colleagues and peers face to face is a welcome return to normal and everyLIFE has a lot to talk about. COVID-19 caused many new issues for the social care sector and highlighted many more that have been battled behind closed doors for some time, which the wider public knew little about. Taffy Gatawa, Chief Information & Compliance Officer at everyLIFE will explore these issues and examine what they mean for social care both now and in the future in her keynote speech, titled “An Uncomfortable Truth: Social care deserves more” at The Care Show, NEC Birmingham, 13th-14th October. Looking forward to the event, Taffy said “We see so many hardworking professionals dedicate themselves to caring for others on a daily basis. There are common barriers that they have to try to overcome to provide the level of care that they want to, their frustration and disappointment is palpable. We want to do everything we can to help enable the best care possible, regardless of location, setting and need.”

All Your Care Home Needs This October sees the launch of a new business supporting the care sector in the form of Wippet, an online marketplace which is promising to create quite a stir. Wippet is a B2B, many-to-many marketplace where customers can find everything they need - from beds to detergents, from uniforms to food. Wippet is free to the user and provides the simplicity of one website with one login, one basket and one invoice – the ultimate one stop shop. Matt Oxley is Wippet’s CEO and has had extensive experience in the care sector and is the brains behind the idea. “I don't believe there's a care provider out there that couldn't benefit significantly from the efficiency Wippet will bring. Our mantra at Wippet is to make buying in healthcare simple. That's what we'll deliver from the moment customers first use our site.” John Barrowcliffe, Wippet’s commercial and operations director, underlined that sentiment: “When we briefed the platform design we didn't use any other B2B ecommerce websites as our quality benchmark, we looked to the best of the consumer world. Why shouldn't people in B2B enjoy the intuitive and fluid experi-

The Carer Digital Now Available Weekly thecareruk.com/backissues

Our weekly digital edition supports the sector with all the latest news, expert advice and developments Sign up to get the latest edition direct to you at:

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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 rrooms ooms in your car care e home. !

ence of the sites they use personally? We've all enjoyed many-to-many marketplaces and their benefits with brands like ASOS, Airbnb and Deliveroo, we’re just bringing the same technology to the care sector.” Wippet is known to have signed up some of the biggest players in care suppliers already with a pipeline of customers eagerly anticipating their launch, which has the backing of their new owners who have invested in the team, the platform and Wippet’s marketing. Oxley continued: “It’s the 21st century and all the information customers need is out there, we’ve just put it all in one convenient place where it’s easy to determine best value from suppliers they know and trust. It’s just about choice, value and convenience. And all our suppliers go through due diligence checks, to provide the assurance that customers can buy from known and trusted supplier brands - but without all the usual effort.” Although Wippet hasn't launched yet, there already seems to be a long line of customers keen to see what the platform can do for them so the Wippet team will have a busy couple of days ahead of them at Care Show 21 at the NEC on October 13th and 14th. “So far the response has been overwhelmingly positive, everybody we've spoken to loves the idea and can't wait to try it. We’ll be doing demos at the Care Show and will love to meet more customers and suppliers alike.” said David Meikle, sales and marketing director. See the advert on page 17 for further details. Customers and suppliers can also register their interest at www.wippet.com

How to enhance your rresidents esidents experience --!!

Imagine a piece of equipment for your car e care home that can enhance the experience of your rresidents esidents ts mentally y,, mentally, physically and also emotionally 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.!!

everyLIFE’s steely focus in its support of the care industry and the people cared about extends to its digital care management platform, PASS. The platform’s newest feature, PASSreporting, uses Artificial Intelligence to track and collate recorded care activities, turning this raw information into actionable insights that carers and care managers can easily apply to enhance the care they provide and the operational efficiencies of their organisation. Duncan Campbell, Commercial Director at everyLIFE, is excited by the opportunities PASSreporting offers “Care professionals gather a huge amount of information whilst they are with the people they care about, PASSreporting automatically interprets this and flags crucial moments that matter in someone’s care journey, from an increased dependency on care, to an increased likelihood of a fall. It has also been designed to highlight and support the operational needs of care organisation, including staff training requirements and simplified CQC visits, ultimately helping to save time and money.” To find out more about PASSreporting, visit stand H62 at The Care Show or see the advert on the facing page.

Mentally - Brain training apps, memory apps, board challenges.!! quizzes, boar d games, rreasoning easoning challenges. Physically - Exer Exercise 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 Earth, past and pr present esent clips on Y YouTube YouT ouTu ube of ! interests, hobbies or inter ests, rreligious eligious services and Group Gr oup ZOOM calls to loved ones who cant get person!!! esidents person! to visit in your rresidents ! “We now, “W We use it daily and would not be without ut it now w,, even the rresidents esidents find nd it easy and fun to use. Thank you!” Sandie Evans, Register red ed Manager r,, Registered Manager, Oakland’ ’s Ca Car arre e Home, Crickhowell Oakland’s Care !

All tables ar e made to or derr, if you’d like to are order, enquir e on a price guide and time scales for enquire .inspir spireddeliveries, just visit their website www www.inspiredinspirations.com com or scan the QR code on the right. For general enquiries, please email ! ! info@inspir ed-inspirations.com! info@inspired-inspirations.com!

“This amazing bit of technology is making a huge di!e di!erence !errence to our ou ur rresidents” esidents” Melanie Dawson, Manager, Manager r, The Lawns L at Heritage Manor

“W We’ve noticed ed that quieter rresidents esidents wh who didn’ “We’ve didn’tt interact too much with others have suddenly been mor re e active ac ctive and mor re e vocal.” Lindsey more more Davies, Home e Manager r,, Cwrt Enfys Manager,

The scr screen een is 5mm temper tempered ed glass for your rresidents esidents safety and sealed against fluid uid ingr ingress ess meaning a spill of a cup of tea won’ won’tt ruin your ! equipment. It also means an easy clean solution cross to stop cr oss contamination using any normal surface cleaner cleaner.! r.!

See the advert on page 48 for details.

! !




THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71 | PAGE 59

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.

Empowering Your Ambition with Xledger

Changing your finance system is not something you do every day. However, the benefits of taking this leap can advance the success of your care home – with greater insight and automated processes for your team, now and into the future. Xledger is a leading provider of cloud-based finance software. It helps over 10,000 organisations in 50 countries streamline, digitise and automate their finances. Accessible at any time, on any web-enabled device, Xledger has the tools to slice and dice your data and to

easily drill down from consolidation to individual level transactions. Its automated software can reduce the amount of time you spend on repeat invoices and expenditures. Xledger also prides itself on delivering a quick and simple implementation process with no requirement for a new IT infrastructure. Ultimately, the 100% cloud solution helps you to reduce costs, run a leaner, more efficient finance department and understand key financials in real-time. This gives you the opportunity to add real value to your organisation and frees up your time so you can focus on delivering the best care for your residents. Xledger will be exhibiting at The Care Show 2021 (Hall: 3A, Stand: F64). Xledger Senior Consultant Peter Hucker will also be hosting a session on the morning of Day 1 of the event, entitled Modernise Your Finance System: Why, How and What to Avoid, which is taking place in the Business Compliance Regulation Theatre. To book a demo or arrange a 1-2-1 meeting at the Care Show 2021, you can contact them by emailing mail@xledger.co.uk or call 0117 457 3293.

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PAGE 60 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Why Now Is The Moment To Embrace Digital Health Technology As Part Of The Care Home System By Axel Nordberg, Essity Global Brand Director (www.essity.com) As we emerge from the depths of a historic pandemic, the words of Florence Nightingale have never rung truer for carers around the world. From adapting to PPE requirements to abiding by social distancing, Covid-19 has forced all carers to relearn key parts of their trade to keep their residents safe and healthy. Naturally, this has not come without a cost. According to our data at Essity, the pandemic has had a detrimental impact on either the physical health, mental health or emotional wellbeing of more than eight out of ten of the UK carers surveyed. Every carer said their role had changed, with 95% working longer hours to manage urinary incontinence, cleaning and sterilising responsibilities – the highest of any country in Europe. Ultimately, the bravery of our frontline heroes can only endure this emotional and physical toll for so long. In the face of adversity, however, we must look forward. The development of digital health technology – and the appetite to integrate it into care homes – is accelerating at an exceptional rate, and the industry is realising that it is an essential component of a more efficient, higher quality future for care.

TAKING THE CHANCE TO CHANGE

The pandemic has provided the care industry with a moment to step

back and evaluate how it operates. Alongside the long-term impacts of Covid-19, an ageing population will soon demand a new delivery of care – with care homes unlikely to be able to accommodate every patient that needs their service. For many, home treatment will become the practical solution. In recent years, digital health technology has made this process safer and more comfortable for those who require care, their families, and their carers. From medication reminder apps and ECG wearables, to information-sharing software that lets nurses access patient data remotely, innovation is delivering products and solutions to cater for home care. As more care organisations integrate digital health technology into their operations, they build the infrastructure for a digital future of care. With over a third of carers wanting the government or private companies to invest in more technology, there is a clear appetite to make that next step forward from those that matter.

IMPROVING DIGNITY AND COMFORT THROUGH TECH

To bring the power of digital health technology to life, it is important to discuss it in the context of the real, day-to-day issues putting an insurmountable strain on carers. Managing urinary incontinence – an important yet challenging aspect of a carer’s day-to-day role – has had both a physical and emotional impact on the carer during the pandemic, with the rate of resultant exhaustion (25%) and resentment (13%) rising by 19% and 10% respectively since 2019. It’s not just the carers that are impacted – 80% of carers find it hard to maintain the dignity of those suffering from the problem. Deploying technology to address these issues can be life-changing for carers and those needing care alike. However, the UK is currently lagging behind. Only 27% of UK carers said that they have access to

sensor technology to support incontinence care, compared to the European average of 32%. Reusable sensors, such as our recently launched TENA SmartCare Change Indicator, can track when a patient needs changing and provide app notifications to their carers, ensuring instant attention and avoiding unnecessary checks. With 71% carers currently struggling with the time required to make frequent checks associated with urinary incontinence, this technology is invaluable to the efficiency of their role.

ENABLING A BETTER TOMORROW FOR CARE

The value of digital health technology in the management of urinary incontinence is just one example of the impact it can have in a care environment, albeit a strong one: 98% of UK carers say that it helps them feel better about their role. This figure alone highlights the value of digital health technology in enabling carers to react to health issues sooner and in a smarter way. By integrating technology into the care routine, any decline in the residents or loved one’s well-being, however slight, can be tracked and used to notify those that can provide the necessary support. As patterns appear in their personal data, it even has the potential to allow carers to predict and prevent various health issues. As an industry, we must continue to work together – as innovators and carers – to co-create digital health technology solutions that will have a meaningful impact on people’s lives. The pandemic has provided the care sector with an opportunity to engage in digital transformation and provide its frontline heroes with the technological support they need to keep those in care, safe, healthy, and happy. Better connected care will deliver better care, for everyone.

Empower Your Care Teams With Flexible Digital Care Management Nourish Care is a Digital Care Planning provider that works with a range of different care services, including residential, nursing, dementia care, learning disabilities, large care groups and more. The app-based system is made up of digital care plans, custom interactions and personalised timelines for everyone within a care service. The digital platform allows care teams to record at the point of care, and analyse data over time to tailor care plans to the individual’s needs. The most important goal for Nourish is to enable carers to spend less time on admin, and more time providing face-to-face, person-centred care. Nourish were one of only two software providers to be assured by NHSX for its DSCR (Digital Social Care Records) Digital Purchasing System (DPS) at launch, and were also the first to be certified by the Professional Record Standards Body (PRSB), with whom they worked very closely to define a new set of standards for interoperability across the care sector.

Some of the most recent additions to the Nourish platform include a Medication Module that allows care providers to streamline medication management. The app also now has an additional option to use Nourish Insights - a powerful reporting and analytics feature that allows care owners and managers to closely track and monitor trends within those they support, to continue to improve the delivery of care. To learn more about the Nourish platform, you can visit them at The Care Show on 13th & 14th October at stand H82. Founder and CEO, Nuno Almeida will also be delivering two talks on the 13th, including Accelerating Quality Improvement by Empowering Circles of Care and Digital Social Care Records - Joining Up Care. You can also contact Nourish to book your free personalised demo by visiting www.nourishcare.co.uk or calling 02380 002288.



PAGE 62 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

PROPERTY & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

How Immigration Can Help The Care Sector

By Jemima Johnstone, head of corporate immigration at Gherson Solicitors (www.gherson.com)

For care homes facing staff shortages the UK immigration system offers some solutions, but is by no means a universal panacea. And the solutions do come at a cost – in terms of both time and money. Following the UK’s decision to leave the EU, the government introduced a single immigration system to apply to all non-UK and Irish nationals. For most individuals looking to come to the UK for work that means first obtaining a Skilled Worker visa, which requires them to be sponsored by a UK employer to take up a specific role. The employer must guarantee the type of role, the salary, and that the candidate has the skills and qualifications to fill it. The Skilled Worker scheme is not an option for every job. The government has set a minimum skill level for roles that can be sponsored –

RQF Level 3. The assessment is based on the nature of the job that will be done and is shown by the Standard Occupational Classification (or SOC code) of the role. For the care sector the key roles eligible for sponsorship are Nurses and ‘Senior Care Workers’. The role of ‘Care Worker’ is not considered to be at a sufficient skill level to be sponsored. The distinction between a Senior Care Worker and a Care Worker is not precisely defined by the SOC codes or anywhere in the government’s immigration rules or guidance, leaving employer’s to make the assessment. The government has also set minimum levels for the salary that must be paid to a sponsored worker. These depend on the SOC code of their job, but there is also a baseline annual salary figure and hourly rate for all roles. For Senior Care Workers the requirement will be to pay at least £10.10 an hour and a minimum annual salary of £20,480. Finally there are criteria that the candidates themselves must meet, including a level of English Language ability. This is met by some nationalities automatically, but applicants from non-English speaking countries – including the EU – may need to sit a secure language test to prove their ability, and this can take time to book and sit. Sponsoring an employee also comes at a cost to the employer, in terms of money but also time. The first step for any employer is to obtain a sponsor licence. This will last for four years, and allow them to sponsor potentially an unlimited number of eligible employees. A sponsor licence costs £536 for small companies and charities, or £1,476 for all other organisations. Visa costs themselves are more significant, though care sector roles will often be eligible for a reduction in fees because they fall under the ‘Health and Care’ visa heading. On average a 3 year visa for a Senior Care Worker will cost c. £1,500 for a small company and £3,500 for a

larger company. An application for a sponsor licence must demonstrate that the company applying is a legally operating UK organisation, that they have a genuine need for a sponsor licence – and will be sponsoring roles that meet the criteria of this visa route. Applicants must also fully understand their obligations and duties as a sponsor and make sure that they have systems and processes in place to deliver these. Applicants show that they meet the criteria by submitting an online form and supporting evidence, and potentially receiving a Home Office assessment visit. Having a licence also brings certain ongoing monitoring and reporting duties, with penalties if these are not met. Licence applications are standardly processed in 8 weeks, but there is a limited priority service available. Applicants who manage to obtain a priority slot, for a fee of £500, will be assessed in 2 weeks. Standardly visas take 3 weeks to process, though for Health and Care visas this time is reduced to c.1 week; applicants outside the EU will have to attend a biometric appointment, which can take from days to weeks to book. With all of the above limitations and costs this may still be the best solution for care homes looking to recruit senior care staff urgently. But to obtain a licence and sponsor individuals by 11th November time is getting extremely tight. Jemima is experienced in all areas of corporate immigration, from gaining and maintaining Sponsor Licences to recruitment advice and avoiding criminal and civil penalties. Her and her team assist with all issues pertaining to running a business in compliance with current immigration laws and hiring and maintaining migrant workers.

The Vocabulary of Leadership By Peter Bewert, Managing Director at Meaningful Care Matters (www.meaningfulcarematters.com)

Leadership! It’s a word that is commonly stated in many different situations. It comes up in personal, professional, social, family, and many other aspects of life. But what does it really mean and further still, what does it really do? Some would say that leaders are part of a bureaucratic chain that seeks to control the lives of us mere minions, conforming us to societal rules made by leaders who are above the leaders, and the bigger leaders beyond that… bureaucracy at its best! So, many self-help and leadership books assert we must ‘tap into the leader within’, well, what happens when one struggles with deciding what to have for breakfast and praying that we simply make it through the day without inadvertently telling someone to ‘go away’ (usually

said with a more uncouth colloquial vernacular in one’s head and on occasions, out loud). As human beings, we complicate many things all too frequently and most of the time unnecessarily. Leadership is simple. The test of a good leader is whether that person inspires you to make a change to better yourself as a person. Leadership, therefore, is about engagement, interaction, relationships, and connections which are meaningful and that matter. We all have the ability to tap into the leader within. Just as we all have the ability to use our leadership to inspire and empower, or to create a feeling of disenchantment around us. Over 25 years of working in health and social care, I have learnt 4 top motivators of emotionally led leadership. If we embrace these top four principles, we will undoubtedly influence positive cultures where people are real, people are genuine, and people can connect meaningfully: 1. Know Yourself: When we know ourselves and how we like to interact and engage with others, this is the first step to authentic meaningful relationship. This is the foundation of leadership. 2. Know your communication style: Knowing the way you like to give and receive information is important. This allows us to develop our communication styles where we are not so strong and in which others may have as their preference. This allows for better understanding. 3. You are not an oracle: Being open to other ideas and ways of thinking are essential. We don’t know everything and, sure, we can bring our best to the table, but when we truly listen to the collective thoughts and ideas of those who we engage with, that’s how we move from good to great. 4. You have a heart for a reason: People are driven by the heart and soul of their emotions. The difference between good leaders and great

leaders is understanding emotional intelligence and the impact of emotions on people and their actions. This means being open to feelings and emotions and learning to not only recognise them, but to also speak the language of feelings. Culture is an umbrella term outlining the societal norms and behaviours which govern our behaviours. One could argue culture designs us and, in part, this is true. However, culture is shaped by the people within. Leaders have the ability to impact culture. The question is, what influence will we exert on moulding our cultures of the future? I would like to think we are all seeking for a better world for ourselves and future generations to experience. This can only come when we embrace agile, emotionally intelligent framework, and this has to come from our leadership styles in action. Feelings, actions, interactions, and knowledge will shape our cultures of the future; we are the designers of the culture we wish to see. Good leadership begins with self. It empowers self and others to be the best version of ‘me’ and embrace the unique individualism that comes from the diversity of beliefs and cultural practices. So, what are you going to influence today? Peter Bewert is the Managing Director at Meaningful Care Matters, a leading care and organisational development group that specialises in helping health and social care providers to access a variety of support services. The group helps to facilitate the creation, reinvigoration and sustainable implementation of person-centred care cultures where people matter, feelings matter, and we are ‘Free to be Me’. Contact the team on admin@meaningfulcarematters.com.

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PAGE 64 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 71

PROPERTY & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

How To Make Yourself An Attractive Proposition To Investors

By Pinesh Mehta, investor at BGF (www.bgf.co.uk)

The care sector has been at the forefront in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. For 18 months it has faced extraordinary challenges that have stress tested the business, both financially and operationally, while placing considerable pressure on key workers and service users under their care. COVID-19 has undoubtedly forced many providers to reevaluate their proposition, highlighting the need to invest in a service that has proved vital during the course of 2020. While some may view it as an opportunity to expand and accelerate future growth plans, others will view the pandemic as a tipping point in the company’s lifecycle, deciding now is the time to exit the business. Whatever the motivation, the importance of investment capital in realising those opportunities is clear. So, in a marketplace that is worth around £16.5 billion a year and caters for the needs of over 400,000 service users , how can you make yourself an attractive proposition to investors, whether that’s gearing up for growth, or an exit?

CONSISTENTLY GOOD CARE If a business provides a consistently good quality of care – and, crucially, it maintains that quality as it expands – everything else follows. This is often measured by care quality user ratings from external inspectors – such as the Care Quality Commission – as well as internal data, including a serious incidents log. No matter how profitable, investors won’t invest in a care business if it doesn’t provide a high enough standard of care.

HAPPY, MOTIVATED STAFF Retaining staff is a formidable challenge in an industry where roughly three in ten care workers leave their jobs each year. In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, many workers are suffering from burnout, competition from other employers is high, and Brexit has made it harder to recruit from the European Union. Successful companies offer apprenticeship schemes, career progression and incremental pay rises to ensure hard-working care staff are rewarded.

CLIENTS VALUE THE SERVICE The need for care is rising due to an ageing population and the impact of the pandemic. Yet the quality of care across the industry is mixed and there is a good deal of regional variation in terms of supply and demand. To identify excellent businesses with a reliable pipeline of future clients, investors look for high occupancy rates, as well as using average weekly fees as a benchmark.

A GROWTH-FOCUSED TEAM Investors want to back ambitious businesses with exciting growth plans, but the management team must have the skills needed to turn ambitions into reality. Investment firms look for individuals with a track record of acquiring, developing and integrating new sites into the business. They also pay close attention to how the core estate has performed over time, as this is a good indicator of how future sites will perform.

REGIONAL CLUSTERING Operations at a care business can swiftly become unmanageable if the business is spread over too wide an area. The key is a growth plan focused on geographica clusters; that way, regional managers can oversee operations at several sites without having to travel hundreds of miles. Clustering is easier to achieve if the business pursues a blended strategy – building up new sites from scratch, as well as acquiring existing ones.

ABILITY TO ACHIEVE SCALE Inevitably there will be consolidation in the care industry, in which roughly three-quarters of care homes are run by single-site operators, according to EY-Parthenon. Acquiring sites is the quickest way to grow, whereas developing new sites can provide a bigger boost to the overall value of the business, but this takes longer – on average, it takes two to three years for a new site to reach maturity. If done well, more scale equals a higher enterprise multiple and a more valuable business.

LOOKING AHEAD High acuity services is a sector that has significant investment potential in the current marketplace – particularly those providers who care for adults with learning difficulties in an area where demand continues to outstrip supply, especially for operators that provide a high quality of care. As well as offering a potential return, backing these types of businesses is clearly a good thing from a society perspective. Pinesh Mehta is an investor at BGF – the UK and Ireland’s most active capital growth investor. The company has invested in 28 businesses in the healthcare sector in recent years, totalling £162m of investment. These include Springfield Healthcare, Dolphin Homes, as well as The Good Care Group.

The Social Care Sector Faces The Most Unprecedented Workforce Crisis And Needs Urgent Government Support It is clear that care providers are struggling to recruit and this is due to a combination of factors including low wages, the pandemic, Brexit-related workforce changes and the implementation of the double vaccination policy. This is against a backdrop of an increasing number of adults who need support across the country. Aston Brooke Solicitors working in conjunction with Care England, the largest representative body for independent providers of adult social care, has urged the government to provide more support to stem the workforce crisis in adult social care. Professor Martin Green OBE, CEO of Care England said: “Quite simply care providers are at breaking point. The writing is on the wall and without immediate help, as given to the NHS, the social care sector will crumple and not be there to support the NHS over the winter let alone in years to come”. Care England wrote to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Sajid Javid, outlining the crisis in the sector and the steps required to be taken by government with immediate effect. This included: • Expanding the social care workforce by recruiting an additional 35,000 to 70,000 workers from abroad to combat the effects of the mandatory vaccination. • Reducing the qualifying level for overseas recruitment for social care staff (£25,600). • The inclusion of all care workers to the Shortage Occupation List and reducing the salary threshold for immigration • Waiving the Immigration Skills Charge for care workers

• Fast-track system to grant visas under sponsorship licenses for people working in social care • Bonuses/increase pay • Direct support to help fund those suffering from PTSD • The need for the continuation of COVID funds. Martin added: “We have done an enormous amount of work on what could and should be done to help the adult social care workforce and hope that we can look to the government for support.” Following the footsteps of Care England, a ground-breaking report by Community Integrated Care has found that the social care sector losing more than 34% of its employees every year and having 112,000 vacancies presently, this research brings into stark focus the roots of an unprecedented workforce crisis. The social care sector is anxiously awaiting the government’s response on this pressing issue. Aston Brooke is working tirelessly to address the recruitment crisis by assisting care providers. If any care providers require further information, please contact Mr Kashif Majeed at km@astonbrooke.co.uk See the advert on page 27 for further information.

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



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PROPERTY & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Will Care Homes Face an Uncertain Future Without Further Financial Support? By John Rozenbroek, CFO/COO at Capify (www.capify.co.uk) Care home workers have been at the forefront of the battle against coronavirus, and the sector has faced incredible challenges throughout this pandemic. 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. 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. As lockdown restrictions continue to ease and the country starts to reopen, do care homes really have everything they need to recover from this crisis?

THE NEED FOR GOVERNMENT SUPPORT

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. Boosting cash flow was the top priority for 57% of businesses in our recent 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. 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 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

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

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

Selling by Auction Is the Fastest and Most Certain Way to Complete a Property Transaction

Owing to the pressures of the Covid-19 pandemic, Charles Darrow Auctions is experiencing increasing demand from business owners looking to sell their Care Home premises by auction. While government support continues, property availability is still low. However, market demand from buyers searching for former Care Homes for either investment purposes or alternative uses is high. We are seeing sellers successfully take advantage of the high levels of market demand right now, rather than waiting to join what is likely to become a saturated market, with an anticipated influx of commercial property likely to be hitting the market in the first quarter of 2022. To satisfy this demand, we are looking for entries into our next auction and will consider all types of Care Home. Our company ethos is to achieve the best price possible by providing the most up to date accurate marketing advice to our clients. Lucy Fuller, Auction Surveyor at Charles Darrow commented “An auction sale can often take as little as

four weeks from instruction to an exchange of contracts, whereas a standard Private Treaty sale is currently taking on average four to six months to reach exchange of contracts, with no guarantee the buyer will not withdraw from the transaction at any point in the process. Our auction process allows people to seriously commit to a purchase when bidding, as contracts will exchange instantly to the highest bidder at the fall of the gavel”. Sadly, a lot of business owners around the UK are now in some form of financial distress and with this likely to worsen as government support is withdrawn, a quick method of sale is likely to be required by many of them before the year end. We believe that selling by auction is truly the fastest and most certain way to complete a property transaction and we would love to have the opportunity to discuss your marketing options with you. If we can help you, please contact the Auction team at Charles Darrow on 01626 572894 / 01626 330022 or visit www.charlesdarrow.co.uk/auctions