The Carer Digital - Issue #48

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

The Carer Digital



Issue 48

Two Visitors Allowed in Care Homes to Reunite Loved Ones

Care home residents in England will be able to receive two visitors indoors from Monday 12 April as covid restrictions continue to be cautiously eased.

will be able to conduct tests at home rather than at care homes to help manage the flow of visitors and allow more visits to take place.

Regular visits are being extended from one to two people under carefully designed conditions to prevent transmission of Covid-19.

Visitors who are parents will also be able to visit with babies and very young children, who willnot count as one of the visitors.

Visitors will be asked to provide a negative test result and wear PPE during the visit to keep themselves, staff and residents safe.

This means grandparents and great-grandparents will be able to meet the newest members of their families for the first time.

In the coming weeks, as testing capacity continues to increase, some visitors



EDITOR'S VIEWPOINT Welcome to the latest edition of The Carer Digital! We are of course by no means anywhere near back to normal. However, the news that residents can now have two current visitors indoors is a most welcome step forward. This past year has been extremely difficult for those working and living in residential care setting. Lockdown measures have been especially difficult for the many care home residents with dementia or memory problems, which is estimated to be 70% of the people living in care homes. Regular visits from loved ones were replaced by interactions with staff wearing unfamiliar, personal protective equipment (PPE) which can appear rather frightening, leaving residents distressed and agitated. Mainstream media coverage of visitation rights and Covid outbreaks in care homes, (something I have been particularly critical of), provoked a blame climate, often pointing fingers at care workers and management. Staff, grappling with the challenge of caring for vulnerable residents during a global pandemic found themselves hindered with negative publicity when they were simply carrying out government lockdown rules. As one care operator stated we found ourselves “damned if we do and damned if we don’t” when it came to visitation rights. Nevertheless, the easing of restrictions is a warmly welcomed step forward. It is, however, rather puzzling though to see the ban on over 65’s in care homes from taking trips outside of the home remain. This has led to a legal challenge. One which could, and should, have been wholly avoided. 20 years ago, when we first started here at RBC Publishing we found ourselves at the centre of a costly High Court legal battle over copyright! When the case eventually finished, I reflected on how we and the party we were in litigation with could, and should, have done more to avoid a costly and unnecessary legal battle. When one looks objectively at the over 65’s being banned from leaving a care home, examine the scenario where a very sprightly young at heart 70-year-old cannot go outside of the home today whereas a 64-year-old year old in extremely poor health can! Julia Jones, a co-founder of John’s Campaign, who has issued a challenge rightly said residents had been “comprehensively ignored” during the pandemic. Speaking in a radio into she said: “People living in care homes are people very often living towards the end of their lives, or they are people living with a learning disability, for whom their wellbeing is dependent on their routines. These people have been comprehensively ignored. “We understand this guidance was prepared very hastily, we sent a message back at the time. They have had almost a month to make it better, they haven’t done so. We’re just not going to wait – this is unlawful and wrong.” Yet again an example the government’s hasty and sometimes ill-thought-out approach.


Peter Adams

Time is absolutely critical, and this is a legal fight that could really have been avoided. I am sure every care home would echo the words independent care group CEO Mike Padgham, who said: “We also have to say to families that they will have to be patient with their local homes as these changes will place a lot more pressure on those settings. This year has certainly shone a light the care sector. Up to now there has been a failure to recognise that the system within which care homes operate has long been fractured, with the pandemic intensifying these cracks. Insufficient resources, low staff wages, and chronic understaffing have dogged the sector for years, and have contributed to staff burnout and high turnover rates, with over 100,000 vacant regularly unfilled and one in three employees leaving the UK care home sector annually. As we move out of lockdown there are going to be frustrations and no doubt mistakes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day” and families will have to play their part in helping the care sector and that means by abiding by the rules and being patient! Don't forget our latest “Unsung Hero Award”. A small token on our part to reward somebody who has gone that extra mile in in the residential and nursing care sector. While mainstream media sometimes it would seem “relishes” the opportunity to dwell on negative news surrounding care homes, we have always done the opposite! And it is an absolute travesty that these feelgood stories and initiatives never seem to make mainstream news. We last did an award before Christmas, which received, we are delighted to say, a phenomenal response, with some of the most wonderful, delightful, inspiring nominations for staff working in numerous roles within the sector who had gone that little bit more (often a lot more) in their daily duties which can sometimes go unnoticed. So much so in fact that we tagged on an extra couple of runner-up prizes! We only opened for nominations last week and already are receiving nominees throughout the UK we are absolutely thrilled to say! So, once again a luxury hamper will be delivered directly to a “UNSUNG HERO” at their care home, nominations are open until April 30 so please get nominating with a small paragraph of what your nominee has done and why you think they are worthy of recognition Once again we have called on some of the industry’s “ leading lights” for insight, advice guidance and best practice, and are always delighted to print the many “uplifting stories” we receive from care homes and staff around the country so please do keep them coming! I can always be contacted at

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Two Visitors Allowed in Care Homes to Reunite Loved Ones (...CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER)

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “Reuniting family and friends has been a priority each time restrictions have eased, and the next step will be no different. “I’m particularly pleased to allow residents to have more visitors, including grandchildren, given the isolation and concern felt by so many this past year. “Thanks to the tireless work of care home staff, and the success of the vaccine rollout, we’re able to increase the number of visits in a safe and controlled way.” The drop in community infection rates and the successful rollout of vaccinations in care homes means the increase in visiting planned in the roadmap can go ahead as long as infection prevention and control measures remain in place. Further opportunities for relatives and contacts to have outdoor, pod and screen visits will continue in line with the published guidance which has been in place during lockdown. Minister for Care Helen Whately said: “Increasing care home visiting is a top priority as we ease Covid restrictions. I know just how much these visits mean to residents and their loved ones. “I’m pleased we were able to introduce more meaningful visits to care homes in March. Seeing friends and family reunited has been incredibly moving. Thank you to all of our amazing care workers for helping to make this possible. “We want to go further, so we’re allowing more visitors at this next stage of the roadmap – and our aim is to make visiting to care homes as normal as possible by the summer. We know how cruel this virus can be in care homes so we must continue to follow the science and data, but things are looking up.” Arrangements for essential care givers for those residents who require the greatest support and which have been welcomed by residents and care providers will continue. Some residents, such as those with advanced dementia, some autistic people and people with a learning disability need a particular, trusted person to provide some aspects of their care which is why the essential care giver scheme will also be extended. Fiona Carragher, Director of Research and Influencing at Alzheimer’s Society said: “We’re so pleased two named visitors will be able to have

ing with their loved ones which has been very humbling. The planned extension of the number of visitors to two per resident from 12 April is an exciting step in our journey back to normality, and we’re really looking forward to more family members and friends being able to reunite with their loved ones.”

The government have recently announced a further £341 million to support continued rigorous infection and prevention control measures and extended rapid testing and free PPE to protect care homes and save lives. This combined approach, they say is to protected visiting is based on the latest scientific evidence and data and represents a balance between the risk of infections and the importance of visiting for the physical and mental wellbeing of residents and their

meaningful close contact visits with loved ones in care homes from 12 April. “Visits are vital to care home residents with dementia, who have been isolated from their loved ones, without the essential care and support their families so often provide, and as a result experienced a devastating increase in their dementia symptoms over the past year.” “We’ve come a long way since the first lockdown, and soon we hope to see the benefits from people with dementia being reunited with their loved ones. As infection rates continue to drop and more people get vaccinated, we hope care homes will be able to safely open up further. “It’s essential that an individual’s circumstances are considered, and care homes do what they can to ensure the needs of all residents are met. If you are finding it difficult to visit a care home, please contact Alzheimer’s Society for support.” All care home providers not experiencing an outbreak will be asked to follow the updated guidance and continue to work together with families and local professionals to ensure visits are possible while continuing to limit the risk of transmission of COVID-19. Vida Healthcare’s Gil Chimon, home manager at Vida Grange, said: “The reopening of care homes to one visitor per resident from 8 March was a fantastic morale boost which was welcomed by staff and families alike “We’ve seen some incredibly emotional scenes of families reconnect-

ICG Chair Mike Padgham: “The announcement will be very welcome to home residents and their families, who have been restricted to just one visitor in recent week. It will be nice to bring more people who have been apart for too long, back together and for many the chance to see grand-children and great-grand-children, in some cases for the first time. “We also support those calling for residents over 65 to be able to enjoy a trip out to get a change of scenery and some fresh air, as those under that age can. It is hard to object to a party of over-65s going out in a minibus, for example, to enjoy a change of scenery and some fresh air, provided they were careful. We would like to see the Government give greater guidance on this going forward. “Of course, in all of these things we must proceed with care, follow all the guidance on masks, social distancing, PPE and good hygiene. All relaxation of restrictions do bring with them risk, but we have to balance risk with the benefits these changes can bring. “Our message is: ‘proceed with caution’ adhere to the guidance and let’s keep each other safe. “We also have to say to families that they will have to be patient with their local homes as these changes will place a lot more pressure on those settings. “It will mean added workload in terms of testing and managing visits, preparing residents to leave the building and so on. These are welcome changes for our residents and their families but will put further pressure on providers.”


How Should We Mark World Health Day? By Philippa Shirtcliffe, Head of Care Quality, QCS ( 7th April is World Health Day, an annual event celebrated by the World Health Organization (WHO), which it has been running for over 70 years. This year the WHO has created a campaign to “building a fairer, healthier world.” This a theme that particularly resonates with Quality Compliance Systems, the organisation that I work for. Take a cursory glance at our website and you will see that ‘Helping to create a fairer and more compassionate world’ is our primary purpose. It is something that is woven deeply into our values and company culture. But this is not a blog about QCS. Instead on World Health Day, as we battle to contain the greatest health crisis in our lifetime, consider this column a call to arms to both strive for and realise profound change in our broken health and care systems. Of course – as you and I know – the cracks have always been there. But, Covid has cruelly exposed them – and in the process it has revealed deep-lying inequalities in our health and care systems and our society. Again, to anyone working in the social care sector, which is often nicknamed ‘the Cinderella Service’ due to it being consistently under-funded and under-valued over the years – this was nothing new. But, it was a shock to the general public, who suddenly became aware of the ever-deepening inequalities. The government has finally taken note. But so far there has been more rhetoric than action. Since pledging to reform the health and care sectors, which would ensure a closer union between the two, very little has been said, until that is, Jeremy Hunt, the former Health Secretary, brought the issue to a head last week. Mr Hunt asked the Prime Minister if he “could understand the frustration of 1.6 million people in the sector who feel they are always treated as the poor relation?”

Mr Johnson responded by announcing that the social care sector would get a 10-year plan, more of which he said might be revealed in mid-May. Whether this new development will offer adequate reform, or indeed narrow the gap between health and care, is not clear. But I think whatever approach politicians take, it needs to be a holistic remedy that recognises the challenges that the health and social care sectors face mirror those faxed by society. The government, therefore, needs to think bigger. Any solutions need to also address the wealth gap. The government constantly talks about “levelling-up”, a phrase minsters love to trot out in interviews, but at some point they need to not just “talk the talk”, but actually “walk the walk”. To effect real and lasting change, central and local government also need to tackle inadequate housing, a national scandal that ITV News laid bare last week. It must also address poor diet, unhealthy lifestyle, digital exclusion, education inequality, and put the right funding and support in place to address a mental health crisis, which one child behaviour expert called a “ticking time bomb.” In the long-term too, we need as a society to come together and openly discuss the lessons of Covid. What went wrong? How can we put it right? And what resources and what funding do we need to put in place to avert a similar pandemic in the future? We mustn’t be afraid to toss ideas around – even if they end up not being realised. Some are suggesting that we bring back national service, for example, which would give young people the option of spending time working in community-based services – such as residential care homes. Whether an idea like this would ever fly is unclear. But it should be debated, and that is the most important point. World Health Day offers us that opportunity. It provides us with a global platform to bring new thinking to the fore, as to how we address some of the inequalities that Covid has so brutally exposed, and in doing so, lay the foundations to build a fairer and healthier world. We should grab the opportunity with both hands. QCS is a leading provider of content, guidance and standards for the social care and health care sectors. To find out more about QCS, contact our compliance advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email

Oldest Lady in Formby Celebrates 107th Birthday in Lockdown with Poem A Formby resident is celebrating her 107th birthday in style with a self-penned poem about her life and reaching such an incredible milestone. Known fondly as Aunty Marj, Marjorie Hodnett is a resident at New Care’s Formby Manor care centre, located on Liverpool Road in Formby. A real character and very much part of the home’s wonderful family of staff and residents, she is still incredibly alert and active and continues to pursue her lifelong passions of poetry writing and painting. Lockdown hasn’t dampened Aunty Marj’s enthusiasm for marking this momentous occasion and she will enjoy a day to remember filled with laughter, fun and visits from family and friends. Home manager at Formby Manor, Debra Roose, said: “We’ve spoken to the team at Sefton Advocacy’s Older Person’s Forum in Formby and Southport and they have confirmed that they don’t know of anyone older that our wonderful Aunty Marj. Given that she is officially the oldest person in the local area, and is so keen to celebrate, we are pulling out all the stops to ensure the day is exactly what she wants. “The local community has been so kind. We sent out a request on the Formby Bubble for birthday cards for Aunty Marj and these continue to flood in. Also the children from Halsall Church of England School in Halsall, near Ormskirk, have designed individual cards which their teacher very kindly delivered.

“We have decorated a gazebo with banners and balloons kindly donated by TTI Treasures to enable Aunt Marj to receive staggered visits throughout the day from family and friends safely in line with current guidelines and will be celebrating with strawberries and champagne. The grand finale will be everyone coming together to sing happy birthday and enjoy cake before Aunty Marj reads her poem to us.” Aunt Marj has enjoyed a long and happy life. She was born in Harleston, London, before moving to Wembley. She met her first husband Stanley in 1939 at the Fellowship of Reconciliation and they married in 1941, living initially in Wembley before moving to Harrow after the war. Sadly, Stanley passed away in 1955 after 14 years of marriage, and in the following year Aunty Marj married Hugh (Stanley’s brother) who passed away in 1958 leaving Aunty Marj widowed for the second time at the age of 45. Just before Hugh passed away, the couple had moved to Sidbury in Devon in 1956 where Aunty Marj was the school teacher of a reception class for 23 years. Finally, Aunt Marj moved to Formby Manor to be nearer to her family and her niece Maggie and her great niece Katie are now regular visitors to Formby Manor. She has remained very active continuing to read, write poetry and paint and continues to take an interest in news and politics with her overriding motto being “look forward with hope and not backward with regret.” Aunty Marj commented: “Life is for living and I have enjoyed a long

and very happy life, firstly in Devon and now here in Formby where I couldn’t ask for a more lovely team of carers at Formby Manor. I’m very happy to have reached 107 years of age and intend to celebrate with all of my family and friends with a super day to remember. And I couldn’t let the moment go by without one of my poems which I will read to everyone on my big day.”


I did not expect to reach 107, Nor living in Formby and not in Devon. Living there was like living in heaven, My room looked out on a wonderful view,

I was never short of something to do. was cricket, First there was croquet and then there wicket. good a rve The groundsmen had to prese play, to here Minor counties came day. I could see the sea and the cliffs every Now in the Manor, I lie in bed, half red. And look at the building, half white and , lchair whee my into Each day I am hoisted care. who le peop by time the I am helped all Sometimes we join a cookery club, grub. And given what’s needed to make tasty s, head our in Sometimes we do singing and g. the tunes keep ringin you exercise your thighs! Other times we do exercise, that helps Formby Manor really are a caring crew Always finding us things to do.

Marjorie Hodnett

Pandemic Prompts Boom in First Time Tech Users The pandemic has fuelled a nation of Zoom users, as friends and family connect virtually for the first time during the lockdowns, according to new research from Audley Villages. • 93% of over 55s have used Zoom for the first time during the pandemic • As connecting with friends and family virtually has become more and more important through the different phases of the pandemic, 32% of over 55s say they have become better at managing technology • Using platforms like Zoom (93%), FaceTime (29%), Skype (16%) and WhatsApp (13%) for the first time to keep in touch with loved ones • But, a good chat on the phone remains top of the list when it comes to how people prefer to catch up with friends and family. 72% of over 55s have used phone calls, followed by email (52%), WhatsApp (50%), texts (48%) and Facebook (40%) • 21% of over 55s feel more connected with family, compared to the start of the pandemic in March 2020 Research of Audley Villages’ owners also showed that technology has become increasingly important for both how property owners speak with friends and family, but also how they get updates from the teams in the vil-

lages: • 60% of Audley property owners are comfortable with technology, this us up from 48% in 2019 • All types of devices are being used more by Audley owners – with the use of laptops, iPads and tablets and smartphones all increasing over the past year Paul Morgan, Managing Director of Audley Villages, said: “Technology has become such an important part of our day-to-day lives in the last year. Be it connecting with friends and family, with a quick FaceTime or a birthday Zoom quiz, through to getting a daily workout in. It’s something we have seen more of our property owners embrace through the pandemic. Virtual coffee mornings, workout classes and even the Audley choir recordings now take place on Zoom. It has enabled people to connect in a different way and for some, it has even introduced new friendships. “At the start of the pandemic we launched an app for our owners, so they could access village updates, get the latest information and book meals from the restaurants. We saw a fantastic uptake. For now, there’s hope that we’ll all be able to meet in person soon, but family Zoom calls might be here to stay.”


Legal Challenge Over Ban On Care Home Residents Taking Trips Legal action against the government has commenced over guidance that bans care home residents in England aged 65 and over from taking trips outside of the care the home.

everyone else in the population, apart from prisoners, could so easily be denied them. ’Those who cannot make their own choices have relatives and friends who would normally be glad to take responsibility but have been excluded choices.’

A campaign group John’s Campaign, which campaigns for better access on behalf of residents and their loved ones, says the ban is unlawful, and are also challenging the requirement for residents to selfisolate for 14 days after such visits, and argues that by imposing a blanket ban regardless of the health of the individual, the Government is acting unlawfully.

The government said its guidance provides a “range of opportunities” for visitors to spend time with loved ones.

It said the Equality Act 2010 prohibits indirect discrimination, but the guidance on care home visits “permits (indeed, requires) just such a discriminatory approach to be taken”.

A Department of Health and Social Care spokeswoman said: ‘We know just how crucial visits are in supporting the health and wellbeing of residents.

In a letter to the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), the campaign’s solicitors Leigh Day said the guidance must balance the Covid-19 risk against the harm caused by keeping people away from their families. The letter continued: “That risk being particularly stark where many individuals in care homes have suffered from prolonged separation throughout this year.” Adding that those aged 64 and under may be permitted to leave the home even if they have a condition that makes them extremely vulnerable, but those above that age who are otherwise healthy are not.

She added: “It is extraordinary, unkind and entirely unacceptable that Government guidance should seek to prevent anyone over the age of 64 leaving their care home for visits out.

Leigh Day said existing laws requires care homes to make specific, risk-assessed decisions for the individuals in their care, and imposing blanket restrictions on those aged 64 and over is “fundamentally at odds with that requirement”. John’s Campaign co-founder Nicci Gerrard said: “Care homes are not prisons, and people living in them should have the same rights as everyone else in society.” Speaking to the BBC she said: “The 440,000 people living in care homes include some who moved in through their own volition, with full mental capacity, never guessing that this simple freedom, enjoyed by

‘Our current guidance provides a range of opportunities for visitors to meet and spend time with their loved ones in a care home under carefully designed conditions to keep everyone safe. ‘Residents over 65 can make visits outside of care homes in exceptional circumstances and all decisions in relation to visiting should be made on the basis of a risk assessment centred around the individual. This is made clear in our guidance. ‘As we move along the roadmap, we are looking to open up more opportunities for visiting both into and outside of care homes, wherever this can be done safely and is supported by data.’

Staring into the Unknown – Industry Body Expresses Concern Over Fee Rates Care England has expressed concern that a large proportion of local authorities are yet to publish fee rates for the care providers in their area from April. Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “We understand that local authorities are under a great deal of stress, but care providers are suffering extreme uncertainty as they await the fee rates. A recent poll of our members showed that only between 10-30% of local authorities had made offers at this late stage”. Local authorities are expected to deliver fee rates by the beginning of 1 April, but

in 2021 members of Care England have noted that a larger proportion than normal have failed to do so. The majority of care home residents have their fees paid, albeit fully or partially, by local authorities and without prior knowledge of fees it is incredibly difficult for providers to plan ahead thus leaving an already fragile sector very exposed. Martin Green continues: “The time for adult social care reform is nigh. Commissioners need to commission for outcomes putting the individual at the centre rather than opting for the lowest rate possible. We need change”.

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Coping with Food Refusal

By Jane Clarke, Dietitian and founder of

Recovery from illness or surgery will take longer. If they are already vulnerable or living with a health condition, they may deteriorate faster. But there are strategies that can help break the cycle of food refusal and encourage someone to begin eating again, while at the same time treating them with dignity and respecting their right to choose not to eat certain foods – after all, we all have our favourite flavours, as well as tastes and textures we can’t easily stomach. Here are some ideas…


From childhood to old age, the rhythms of our day tend to revolve around mealtimes – and that doesn’t change once we move into a care setting. Breakfast, lunch, teatime and supper bring residents – and carers – together around the table, and can provide precious moments of sociability, fun and connection, as well as healthy food to help maintain strength and resilience. That changes when a person refuses to eat, or is reluctant to have more than a few mouthfuls. There are lots of reasons for this – living with a condition such as dementia; feeling unhappy in a new setting; grief or illness. As a carer it’s important to tackle food refusal as soon as possible, because the less a person consumes, the less their body and mind seems to feel a need for food. Without the nourishment their body needs, an individual’s health will suffer. They will have less energy to be engaged in physical and social activities, leading to a reduction in wellbeing and quality of life. They will become weaker, increasing risk of falls, confusion and infection.

snack for supper. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to having dinner for breakfast or lunch at 4pm – it’s what works best for the individual and their appetite.

EAT TOGETHER Some people don’t like to eat alone. If some meals take place in a resident’s own room, rather than a dining room, try to take the time to sit and chat with them while they eat rather than getting on with a job elsewhere. It can make meals feel a lonely, challenging time for the person

If portions are small, it’s essential they contain as much nourishment as possible. Enriching foods with additional vitamins and minerals, protein, carbohydrates and calories can be as simple as adding extra vegetables to a tomato sauce, grating some Cheddar cheese into mashed potato, or adding extra lentils and a swirl of cream to a soup.

to someone with a heartier appetite, as it may prompt them to follow


suit and eat more.

This sounds controversial and I am a huge advocate for the pleasure of shared mealtimes, but they can feel overwhelming for some people and this is when the habit of refusing to eat can set in. Instead, try serving a small plate of food on a tray while they watch TV or listen to the radio. It can take the pressure off having to ‘perform’ at the table, and you may find they nibble more than expected.


SERVE A NOURISHING DRINK A ‘meal in a mug’, like a cup of soup, a fruit-filled smoothie, or an allnatural meal replacement Nourish Drink, is a good option for anyone who feels overwhelmed when a full plate of food is put in front of them. You’ll have the reassurance that the person you are looking after has had the equivalent nutrients of a complete meal but in a form that slips down more easily than a plate of cooked food. You could try this midmorning or mid-afternoon, instead of the usual tea and biscuit.

you are caring for, and you may find they eat more when you are with them, rather than you returning to a plate of uneaten, cold food. If residents do sit at the table together, place the reluctant eater next

We all have favourite foods so it’s worth trying to find out the dishes a person really loves. Even if they’re no longer able to enjoy the same meal, you could capture the flavours in a more accessible alternative – a roast chicken soup instead of a roast chicken dinner, say. Depending on the cognitive abilities of the resident, you could try creating a food and memory moodboard together, with photos of foods that remind them of happy times – ice cream on the beach, roast dinner on a Sunday, kippers for breakfast… It’s a great way to tempt the appetite and spark conversation.

BE ENCOURAGING If you ask a reluctant eater if they’d like potatoes or a pudding, the answer is likely to be ‘no’. Instead, respectfully cajole them to eat by


saying, ‘Let’s try a potato, or a spoonful of ice cream…’ By encouraging a

If the person you care for has a bigger appetite in the morning but feels too tired to eat later in the day, then provide a more substantial breakfast and take the pressure off the evening by providing a smaller

few mouthfuls, rather than giving a yes or no option to a meal, it’s amazing how many people will be tempted to take a bite, and then another, and before you know it, a good portion will be eaten.

Fundraisers Get Chai-Tea for Dementia UK's Biggest Annual Event Fundraisers will be perfecting their lockdown baking skills to support families with dementia at the most challenging time The tables for Dementia UK’s annual cake and tea event have been completely reset; backyard brews, driveway cake sales, and takeaway cuppa and slice deliveries are some of the brûléent ideas families, businesses and communities up and down the country have to raise funds and awareness of Dementia UK’s dementia specialist nurses, whilst keeping safe during the pandemic. Dementia UK is the only charity dedicated to supporting the whole family through dementia specialist Admiral Nurses. The event takes place 1st-8th May. When things get challenging or difficult for people with dementia and their families, Admiral Nurses work alongside them; giving compassionate one-to-one support, expert guidance and practical solutions which can be hard to find elsewhere. They are continually trained, developed and supported by Dementia UK. The charity’s annual fundraising event has raised over £1 million since its launch, with the support of fundraisers, Dementia UK staff and celebrities. One of the highlights from last year’s event included celebrity supporters dressing up as much-loved characters to recreate tea party scenes from the world of film; Phyllis Logan was Mary Poppins, music producer Naughty Boy was Jay Gatsby, Emma Barton was Holly Golightly, and Jess and Natalya Wright were Alice in Wonderland and the Queen of Hearts. Dr Hilda Hayo, Chief Admiral Nurse and CEO of Dementia UK, says: “Families with dementia have been adversely affected by lockdown for

just over a year now. Care home visiting restrictions, the closure of support and respite services, and the resulting social isolation and loneliness, has disproportionately affected people living with dementia and their family carers. “Whilst Time for a Cuppa will be slightly different this year, we know that dementia support is needed more than ever. We are so grateful to all of our fundraisers who will be whipping up treats, enthusiasm, funds, and who are giving their time for others – in a socially distanced way, of course – in what will be a very special and important Time for a Cuppa.” Karen Houghton, whose mum Christine lives with dementia, is only too aware of the toll that the pandemic has had on people with the condition. With the support of her Admiral Nurse, Marie, the family has felt less alone: “Marie is so personable and has developed a great relationship with my dad, who had been struggling to cope with all the support services closing down. “We needed to move mum into residential care, but this was hard to do in the middle of the pandemic as we couldn’t really get a feel for the homes. Marie picked up the phone and knew exactly what questions to ask the care homes so we could be confident that we were placing mum in the best place possible. Without her, we just would not have felt supported or valued as a family.” For more information about Time for a Cuppa and how to host your own tea party with our free fundraising pack, please visit: w You can also call 020 8036 5380 or email:

East Midlands Care Home Staff Praised For ‘Resourcefulness’ During COVID-19 Pandemic “Dedicated and resourceful” care home staff across the East Midlands have been praised for overcoming barriers to assisting people during the first stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Eighteen managers of registered care homes across the region were interviewed by lead researcher Dr Fiona Marshall via video to find out about their experiences of the crisis. Central government was criticised and local support was identified as key in providing care to all residents during a frightening and unprecedented experience. The aim of the COVID-19 Care Home Sectors Study was to gather information to inform more effective responses to the ongoing pandemic, and to improve understanding of how to work with care home staff and organisations post-pandemic. Many of the managers paid tribute to local communities, including businesses, third-sector organisations and individuals, who they say were key in helping care homes overcome the challenges they faced in delivering care to its residents.

helped overcome the barriers to care, of which this country should be very grateful.” Professor Adam Gordon, who is the NIHR ARC East Midlands Theme lead for Building Community Resilience and Enabling Independence and Professor of Care of Older People at the University of Nottingham, said: “We discovered there was a remarkable approach among care homes, which showed them working together to provide mutual support, rather than competing against one another. “Sadly, this was not the case when it came to organisational responses by central government which resulted in resource constraints and additional work for care home staff. In some cases, the decisions made centrally actually impaired the staff and managers’ ability to make decisions.” The information gathered has contributed towards advising the UK government and will help form new guidelines which will be used in the future to assist care homes after the pandemic, and should another global emergency occur again.

Dr Fiona Marshall, a Research Fellow, from the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) East Midlands and the University of Nottingham, said: “English care homes rapidly adapted their practices in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Staff were forced to adjust overnight to new guidelines and policies and we wanted to find out how frontline staff felt they coped.

Professor Kamlesh Khunti, Director of NIHR ARC East Midlands and Professor of Primary Care Diabetes and Vascular Medicine at the University of Leicester, said: “This study is an important contribution to the evidence and knowledge base in this field and will play a part in the national response to the global pandemic. It is another example of how ARC East Midlands has reacted swiftly to the significant challenges posed by COVID-19.”

“Care home staff had to deliver care in innovative ways, making high-stake decisions and very often putting their residents first before themselves. It was the resilience, dedication and resourcefulness of staff which

To access the study, click here:


Decision to Turn Off National Booking Service for Care Staff Vaccines ‘Must Be Reversed’ The National Care Forum (NCF) has called on the government to reverse its decision to restrict access to the national booking system for all care staff. The Government decided to restrict access to the National Booking Service for all care staff from April 1st. The National Booking Service allows all eligible health and social care workers to self-refer for a vaccine appointment, regardless of whether they work in the NHS or not, and has become the most direct access route for care staff, and is accessed by thousands of care staff every day. It is understood that the decision was made in light of supply issues for the vaccine. Care home staff are JCVI priority 1, and all other care staff are JCVI priority 2. All other priority groups 3 to 9 appear to remain eligible to use the service. This decision has been made immediately prior to the fourday bank holiday, with no notice and the decision only being formally

communicated on Thursday evening. On the 23rd March, Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State made it clear that he felt there was a need to enforce vaccination for care staff. In the light of that intent, it seems extraordinary to then cut off the access to this formally identified priority group. Vic Rayner, CEO of the National Care Forum – the leading association for not for profit care providers says of the decision: “This is an unfathomable decision. The fact that the changes were announced on April Fools Day does not help the credibility of a government that on one hand says every care worker must be vaccinated, and in the same breath turns off the most accessible supply tap for those self-same workers. There seems no logic in keeping the National Booking Services open for every other priority group, yet closing it off for individual workers in JCVI priority groups 1 and 2. When the National Booking Service became available to all care workers in mid-February, the government used this to demonstrate they had made an offer of vaccination to all workers. With that in mind, then the only logical conclusion is to be clear that by taking this action the government has arbitrarily restricted access. Far from addressing any problems in the take

Live Streamed Bonkers Bake-Off Event Raises Over £10,000 In Support of Leicestershire Charity Loros Hospice to organise the Bonkers Bake Off; a charity event that saw nine business leaders and sporting legends welcome @WelcommComms Facebook live viewers into their kitchens for a bake-off challenge like no other… On the night, superpowers were launched to disadvantage the bakers; making it next to impossible to bake a deviously difficult LOROS family sponge recipe… that was missing a few key measurements, ingredients and timings! The fabulous baker line up included: • Tom Warner, Founder of global brand ‘Warner’s Distillery’ • Emma Collett, Chief Operating

Officer of national retailer ‘Tapi Carpets and Floors’ • George Chuter, ex-England Rugby and ‘Leicester Tigers’ player • Johanna Constantinou, Brand and Communications Director at ‘Tapi Carpets and Floors’ Chris Greenwell, Dispute • Resolution Partner at ‘Gateley Legal’ Ian Guyler, of ‘Ian Guyler • Business Consulting’ • Debbie Powell, Projects & Innovation Director at ‘Tapi Carpets and Floors’ Wendy Savill, Financial • Director at ‘Sygnet Group Limited’ Mark Smith, Founder of • ‘Truinvest Group Limited’ Organised to spread some joy and

up of vaccination amongst care staff, the government has instead created them. Our research has repeatedly shown that access to the vaccine is one of the main barriers for staff take up. With that knowledge under your belt, the decision to remove opportunities for access must swiftly and decisively be reversed.” In addition, Rayner states: “The timing of this is particularly unhelpful. To bring this in at the beginning of a four-day weekend, when any other routes to book and access vaccinations will be closed down seems unbelievable. Tens of thousands of care workers who could have identified opportunities to receive the vaccination this weekend will be denied. There has been no coherent communication with care organisations, meaning that the opportunity for a planned and phased approach to changes in vaccine take-up management by organisations cannot be implemented. Staff will be left bewildered by their inability to self-book, and employers will be left in despair that once again they are left holding all the cards in a vaccination agenda that for care organisations and their amazing staff increasingly feels less about joint endeavour and more about blame.” raise vital funds for LOROS Hospice, a charity that provides provide free, compassionate care and support to terminally ill adult patients, their family and carers, the event also featured a charity auction showcasing generously donated lots from businesses across the region. Laura Betts, Fundraising Manager at LOROS Hospice said:“Everyone at LOROS has been blown away by your tremendous commitment and enthusiasm for the upcoming Rocket Round Leicester project and the Bonkers Bake Off event – we are so grateful to you for all that you are doing.” Feeling inspired on the night was the winner; Leicester Mercury’s Inspirational Woman of the Year, Wendy Savill – who was voted ‘Star Baker’ by the Facebook live audience. Wendy celebrated with a twirl live on air! Between the donations received on the JustGiving page, and the auction lot contributions, the fundraising target of £10,000 has been smashed, and both Welcomm Communications and Trucklink EU are both incredibly proud to have achieved this for a very worthy cause. The recorded event remains on Facebook, and can be replayed on Welcomm Communication’s Facebook Page @WelcommComms. JustGiving page:




Considering A Career In The Care Industry? Here's What You Need To Know... Whilst some industries have weathered the storm fairly comfortably this past year, others have undoubtedly suffered greater hardship. With government guidelines forcing many businesses to close, live events, personal services, hospitality, retail and travel have been particularly badly hit. Those who have been made redundant recently or are still furloughed as the scheme's deadline approaches may be casting their net a little wider when considering their next steps. As the UK’s elderly population continues to grow, one sector that has remained relatively stable is care homes. As the industry evolves, the volume and variety of roles available has too. With a wealth of experience recruiting for this sector, Jon Mason, Recruitment Manager at Maria Mallaband Care Home Group fills us in on what you need to know when considering a role in the care home industry.


For example, Maria Mallaband currently has a number of Trainee Nurse Associates studying with universities across the UK alongside their current roles. Being able to earn and learn like this gives them the opportunity to become fully qualified nurses without having to worry about funding.

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

WHICH ARE THE RELEVANT SKILLS THAT YOU WOULD LOOK FOR? One of the most important skills you can bring to this field is passion! After all, it might be your place of work, but it is home for those who live there. It’s also important that people who choose this career are confident communicators and empathetic, whether they engage directly with those living there or not. Those within retail, customer service and hospitality often cultivate great communication skills and have learnt to work

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

role co-ordinating hobbies and activities for those with creative or artistic inclinations. More practically minded


individuals may be well-suited to general maintenance, cleaning or transport positions.

Whilst there are some roles that do need specific qualifications there are many that don't. In fact, in many cases getting hands on experience whilst studying can be a much more effective way to learn - plus some employers actually value the opportunity to align your learning to their own methods and practices.

and those around you. With each home operating as its own community accommodating every need for

well as part of a team. As well as customer facing roles I have already mentioned, there are plenty of other roles that could provide relevant skills. Experience in the food industry could lead to a career in the catering team, or perhaps a

A passion for people and companionship as well as the work you do can make such an impact on your role those who live there - the possibilities really are endless.

Wilsmere House Celebrates Easter in Style Staff and residents at Barchester’s Wilsmere House care home, in Harrow Weald celebrated Easter with a whole host of different activities including Easter Egg Hunt, virtually attending a live church service, Easter tea party, Easter cake-making, Easter Bonnet Competition. Residents at Wilsmere House enjoyed an eggs-tensive range of Easter activities, from egg painting, virtually attending a live church service, making hot cross buns, a visit from the Easter bunny. Residents also tucked in to a delicious Easter meal of roast lamb followed by Easter cake] prepared by the home’s

head chef. General Manager, Lili Cocue said: “As always, we’ve all been looking forward to Easter. It’s such a nice time of the year – the residents love all the colourful Easter eggs and the Easter Bonnet parade. It’s really been an eggs-cellent few days!” Residents at Wilsmere House said: “It has been a lovely few days, though like every Easter, I think I’ve eaten too much chocolate! It was so wonderful to see everyone go to so much effort. I really enjoyed the colourful Easter eggs.

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Covid Study To Examine “Disproportionate” Impact On Care Homes Dr Marwick’s study will attempt to identify which care home residents were most adversely affected by the pandemic, and those most likely to contract the disease. The study will also consider the design of care homes, identifying types of premises that are more susceptible to outbreaks to guide service redesign.

A study led by a University of Dundee academic is to examine the “disproportionate” effect of Covid-19 on care homes. Dr Charis Marwick, an expert in infectious diseases at the University’s School of Medicine, says that understanding how different care homes and their residents have been affected by Covid-19 could save lives as the world adapts to living with the virus.

The project will also compare changes in healthcare use between those homes affected by Covid-19 and those fortunate enough not to experience outbreaks, to determine whether alterations in service were a direct consequence of the pandemic or an indirect consequence due to changes in wider healthcare provision during lockdown. The findings will be made available to local health authorities, allowing them to be translated into practice.

Dr Marwick has been awarded £32,000 to fund a new study that will examine how specific characteristics of care homes and their residents have influenced the infection rate and death toll since the start of the pandemic. The project will also examine how hospital admissions and discharges for care home residents altered as the testing policy changed. The funding has been awarded by the University’s own Coronavirus Research Fundraising Campaign, which has awarded grants to projects dedicated to improving our understanding of Covid-19. “Care homes and their residents have been disproportionately affected by Covid-19, with devastating consequences,” said Dr Marwick. “It is therefore critical that we identify where improvements could be made to help protect vulnerable care home residents as we learn to live with this illness in the years ahead. “This study will analyse a wealth of data, examining the relationship between residents, care homes and changes in care throughout the pandemic. By the end we hope the findings will identify risks to care

home residents that could be mitigated to protect these people, who are among those most susceptible to this deadly virus.” Scottish care homes were advised to close doors to visitors at the onset of the pandemic in March 2020. However, several significant outbreaks have occurred, with the virus believed to have claimed hundreds of residents’ lives. While almost every care home resident in Scotland has since been vaccinated and infection rates are dropping dramatically, no vaccine is 100% effective and establishing how to protect those still at risk remains imperative.

The University of Dundee Coronavirus Research Fundraising Campaign was launched to assist the scientific community with research that allows us to better understand Covid-19, and future coronaviruses. Donations from the public, whatever the size, allow our scientists to be nimble by having the funds to follow emerging concepts and ideas quickly. This could help to ensure that we never have to endure the painful separation from loved ones and sacrifice of our day-to-day lives again as we have seen in the current pandemic. Anyone who wishes to make a donation and support coronavirus research at the University of Dundee can do at

Increased Risk of Dementia Following COVID-19 Diagnosis Researchers from Oxford have found a link between a diagnosis of COVID-19 and the subsequent diagnosis of several psychiatric and neurological conditions, including dementia. The study is published in The Lancet Psychiatry. Dr Sara Imarisio, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “ Previous studies have highlighted that people with dementia are at higher risk of developing severe COVID-19. This new study investigates whether this relationship may also hold in the other direction. “This retrospective study, mainly based on US data, indicates that people are at an increased risk of being diagnosed with dementia in the six months following a COVID-19 diagnosis, compared to those diagnosed with the flu or other respiratory disease. This risk is highest for those who were admitted to intensive treatment units.

“While this study analysed data from the first six months following a COVID19 diagnosis, this increased risk may not be limited to this time frame. Given that the peak of COVID-19 hospitalisations in the UK occurred in January this year, and we already expect a backlog of people waiting to come forward or be seen about memory concerns, services must be prepared to deal with a large number of potential dementia cases. “The study doesn’t focus on the cause of this relationship and it is important that researchers get to the bottom of what underlies these findings. While COVID-19 has already had a disproportionate effect on people with dementia in many ways, these neurological impacts are an additional concern and must be a focus of future research efforts into the long-term impact of the virus.”


COVID-19 Vaccines Have Prevented Thousands of Deaths in Older Adults, New Data Shows Public Health England (PHE) analysis indicates that the COVID-19 vaccination programme prevented 6,100 deaths in those aged 70 and older in England up to the end of February. From 8 December 2020 to the end of January 2021, over 4 million vaccine doses were given to adults aged 70 and over. The analysis compared the observed number of deaths with the number of deaths that would have been expected, if the vaccine hadn’t been given during this time period. To allow for the time taken to develop an immune response to vaccination, the analysis assumed it would take 31 days before the effect of vaccination on deaths is observed. Using this method, PHE estimates that around 6,100 deaths were prevented to the end of February – 5,900 in those aged 80 and over and 200 in those aged 70 to 79. Expected deaths with COVID-19 were estimated using real-world data on how effective the vaccines are at preventing death and vaccine uptake. The results are very similar to those estimated by Warwick University (also published in today’s report), which used a different approach to model the number of deaths with and without the vaccination programme. Warwick University’s estimate suggested that the programme has prevented around 6,600 deaths across all age groups. Matt Hancock, Health and Social Care Secretary, said: Vaccines save lives. This work shows vaccines have already saved

over 6,000 lives among the most vulnerable in our society. These results give us hope and remind us about the importance of getting the jab as soon as we are eligible. Millions of people will soon be getting their second doses – giving them the strongest possible protection against COVID-19. I urge everyone to come forward for the vaccine when it’s your turn, to protect your-

self and your loved ones. Dr Mary Ramsay, PHE Head of Immunisation, said: We have shown previously that the COVID-19 vaccinations are hugely effective at stopping people from getting the infection. This new analysis calculates how many lives they have saved in the first few months of the vaccine programme, and with every additional day more lives have and will be saved. The vaccines have an excellent safety record and I would encourage anyone who is offered a vaccine to take it as soon as possible. While the vaccines have a striking impact on mortality, we don’t yet know how much these vaccines will reduce the risk of you passing COVID-19 onto others. Even if you have been vaccinated, it is really important that you continue to act like you have the virus, practise good hand hygiene and stay at home. If future evidence shows that vaccines do help to reduce transmission, then it is likely that an even higher number of deaths will have been prevented. The true value of these vaccines may also be in terms of future deaths avoided, should there be resurgence of COVID-19 in the UK in the future. Older age presents the single greatest risk of death from COVID-19 – prioritisation of the COVID-19 vaccination programme has focused primarily on an aged-based strategy in order to prevent the greatest loss of life possible.

Couple at Paisley Lodge Care Home Reunite with Their Son

Paisley Lodge care home in Armley, Leeds, West

were thrilled to be in his company again after a year apart. before their visit to take the lateral test, complete a

Yorkshire, (part of Orchard Care Homes’ portfolio of res- Stuart commented “It was amazing to finally be able to

health declaration and apply PPE. For those that wish to

idences for the elderly), has opened its doors again to

take an optional PCR test, they can do so by contacting

welcome the family back into the home. Due to the easing of restrictions, Orchard’s policy

hold their hands. I still have a big smile on my face.” A designated visitor is now able to arrange a prebooked appointment to visit their loved one using the

the home prior to their scheduled visit and staff will facilitate the test.

regarding visiting and testing protocols has updated

same-day LFD (Lateral flow antigen) test method only.

Acting Home Manager, Lucy Gradwell, commented

and this has been supported by recent feedback from

This change in policy enables these homes to increase

“It was emotional for all involved to be able to see resi-

relatives and external partners.

face-to-face visits 7 days a week.

Cherry and Trevor were some of the first residents in the home to spend quality time with their son and they

Visitors can book appointments via the home’s

dents able to connect again with their family members and it was a magical moment to see the expressions on

administrator and are asked to arrive on-site 30 minutes residents faces.”


Bupa Introduces Robotics To Relieve Pressure On Care Homes Care home provider Bupa is successfully using technology to relieve pressures posed by the pandemic. Bupa Care Services has introduced a ‘digital team’ of robots to speed and streamline its processing of COVID-19 test results. Within seconds of a positive result, the robots send a notification to the individual’s care home and complete the required governance reporting. The move has speeded up test results, removed the risk of human error and allowed individuals to swiftly isolate and limit possible transmission. It’s also reduced admin duties on staffing teams enabling them to focus on caring for residents. This has been particularly important when homes have had a reduced workforce due to staff shielding or isolating. Since their introduction in December 2020 the robots have processed responses to over 160,000 individual COVID-19 tests. At its peak, this saved colleagues around 2,500 hours of admin – equivalent to 15-20 colleagues working full time. Neil Barker, Finance Director for Bupa Care Services, explains: “We know the immense pressure that has been on our teams throughout the pandemic and have looked for ways to relieve this. “The robots have had a huge impact. They have automated an adminheavy process and freed up time for colleagues to care for residents, which is most needed. “It’s also given us a really clear, accurate picture of case numbers, both on a local home and national level, allowing us to act quickly in

keeping everyone safe.” The process was led by Bupa’s in-house robotics team, which worked closely with the company’s Care Services business, as well as intelligent automation specialist, Blue Prism. The system was mobilised quickly and, following a short trial, was scaled up to respond to increasing test numbers. Bupa currently operates over twenty virtual robots with five of these operating 24/7 to support the care homes business. Three monitor and triage thousands of incoming test results, before handing-off positive results to separate robots to send SMS notifications to staff and complete governance reporting. Nigel Green, Head of Service Management for Bupa Global & UK leads Bupa’s robotic process automation practice and has overseen its increased use across the organisation. He said: “We successfully use robotics across a number of areas across Bupa. Whilst it’s typically for things like Finance and admin processing, it’s been great for the team to see the difference they’re making to people on the front lines of care. “It’s been a really collaborative process with colleagues working together across the business, from robotics and technology specialists through to the frontline teams in our care homes. I’m so pleased to see it having such a tangible impact.”

Cruise Liner Offers Free Staycation Cruises To Key Workers Key workers are being offered free cruise “staycations” around the UK coastline in recognition of their hard work and dedication during the coronavirus pandemic. Royal Caribbean announced that 999 rooms will be allocated to personnel from social care, emergency services, NHS and armed forces. Workers who want to apply for the voyages must register on the cruise line’s website to enter a ballot. To be eligible for one of the free sailings, UK residents must be able to show proof of an official Blue Light Card. Pre-registration for guests eligible for one of the 999 free rooms open on 13th April, and final names will be drawn from a ballot by the

end of this month. Sailings will be available to UK residents who have had both doses of a coronavirus vaccine, and children with negative test results. “We are delighted with the UK government’s recent announcements regarding cruising and excited to set sail again with a phenomenal ship and favourite such as Anthem of the Seas,” said Royal Caribbean International president and chief executive Michael Bayley. “After a tough year, we all need a holiday, but no one more so than the emergency services, NHS, social care sector and armed forces who will have the long-awaited opportunity to get away and relax with total peace of mind,” he added.

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

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15 Winners Announced at Prestigious West Midlands Healthcare Awards DRIVING DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION INNOVATION AWARD

Winner: Dignio Connected Care: Oximetry at Home with Dudley CCG & WMAHSN One to Watch: Yokeru One to Watch: SnoRelief

MEDICINES OPTIMISATION AND MANAGEMENT INNOVATION AWARD Winner: A collaborative stakeholder approach to the development of a streamlined medication ordering process

MENTAL HEALTH RESILIENCE INNOVATION AWARD The West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) has revealed the winners of its esteemed Meridian Celebration of Innovation Awards. The 15 winning teams, individuals or projects from across the West Midlands were announced in last night’s (30 March) virtual ceremony, hosted by TV personality Des Coleman.

Winner: UHB Coronavirus: Your health and well-being One to Watch: 24/7 Patient Access Platform for remote monitoring and management of chronic patients by their GP


hospital patients to reduce social isolation One to Watch: Fit 4 Surgery

PATIENT SAFETY AND IMPROVEMENT AWARD Winner: Embedding Parent Knowledge and Ergonomic Principles in a Paediatric Early Warning System

WORKFORCE INNOVATION AWARD Winner: Hexitime: the national skill exchange for improving health and care services

MERIDIAN AWARD – SPECIAL FOCUS ON COVID Winner: Safe Nasendoscopy assisted procedure (SNAP) by endoscope-i Tammy Holmes, Head of Innovation Exchange at WMAHSN, said: “We’d like to congratulate all of the winners at this year’s Meridian Celebration of Innovation Awards. We received many fantastic entries and are truly humbled by the work that has been taking place within the region, in what has been an incredibly challenging year.

Winner: Implementation of the PIGF test at UHCW to rule out preeclampsia Highly Commended: SaTH NHS Trust NELA team

Winner: Gill Phillips - Creator of the ‘Whose Shoes?’ approach which ensures all voices are heard and reduces inequalities Winner: Dr Hesham Abdalla – Pioneer of the first healthcare timebank in the UK, supporting over 1,100 members to improve healthcare services Winner: Dr Sarb Clare – A national leader in Point of Care Ultrasound who has led and delivered critical education and training in this essential tool Winner: Nina Johns – Creator of a remote monitoring solution for expectant mothers and passionate advocate for innovation in maternity Winner: Jodie Winfield – Clinical member of the STP Digital Innovation Group and provider of a community-based service to support patients in the Wolverhampton region remain in their home Winner: Sarah Sherwood – Implementor of Observation and Escalation of Deteriorating Residents training across 5 CCGS, including over 300 care homes, during the COVID-19 pandemic

Meridian Innovation Exchange is a platform open to any individuals or organisations to find healthcare innovations, share ideas, build groups, and grow networks to collaborate and improve healthcare provision across the West Midlands.



The platform helps users showcase their ideas, spread good practice, and bring about change with collaborators from across sectors.

Since its launch in 2015, the programme has been celebrating individuals and organisations that are revolutionising healthcare across the West Midlands with new ideas, technologies, and initiatives. This year, winners have been selected for their continuous work in implementing positive changes to patient care and the region’s healthcare economy; in spite of the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. The winners for each category are:


Winner: Impulse AF: Improving outcomes for AF patients in the West Midlands

Winner: The Volunteer Platform: WHAT Edition Highly Commended: Patient Connect: Technology based virtual visiting for

“The awards ceremony may have been virtual, but we still had a fantastic evening celebrating the successes of those seeking to address challenges and offer tangible improvements to our industry and patient care. I would like to extend a big thank you to the many incredible innovators entering this year’s Awards and to all those who tuned in to celebrate with us.” Anyone who didn’t have chance to view the awards ceremony on the night can catch up online here:

For more information and to register for free, visit

Entries Open for NACC Care Chef of the Year 2021 Competition The National Association of Care Catering (NACC) has officially launched its search for the best chef working in the care sector. The NACC Care Chef of the Year 2021 competition opened for entries. All chefs and cooks working across the care sector1 can enter the prestigious culinary competition that recognises, showcases and celebrates their talent and sector-specific knowledge and skills. The entry brochure can be downloaded at and the deadline for entries is Friday 30 April 2021. The NACC is also delighted to announce that Unilever Food Solutions is the new main sponsor of the competition. The Worshipful Company of Cooks remains an event sponsor, continuing its support of 11 years. Focusing on the importance of food, nutrition and positive mealtime experiences as part of quality care, entrants are challenged to create an appealing and delicious two-course menu (main and dessert) appropriate for people in a care setting. The combined food cost for both courses should be no more than £2.25 per head based on three portions and it must be nutritionally balanced. The menu must also feature a product from Unilever Food Solutions’ sector-relevant portfolio2. In addition, in a move that highlights the importance of cleanliness and hygiene best practice in the care sector and as a key factor for success in the competition, the NACC has reintroduced the Hygiene Award, which will be sponsored by the Unilever Professional Cleaning range. All paper entries will be judged by a central judging panel and successful chefs will be invited to compete at the regional heats in June 20213. Here they will have 90 minutes to produce their dishes and demonstrate their skill set and knowledge under the watchful eyes of the competition judges. The judges will be looking for clear nutritional understanding of the foods they are using and how they benefit the needs of their clientele, plus culinary flair through flavours, menu balance, execution, presentation, and, of course, hygiene best practice. The two highest-scoring competitors from each regional heat will secure a coveted place in the national final on Wednesday 6 October 20213 at Stratford-upon-Avon College.

Sue Cawthray, National Chair of the NACC, said: “It’s wonderful to be able to announce the launch of the NACC Care Chef of the Year competition for 2021. And what’s even better, is that there is also the real hope that this year’s event will unfold in person. “This fantastic competition is so important to our work that raises awareness of the value of the care catering sector and the profile of the incredibly talented, knowledgeable and dedicated chefs within it. This has never been so important. It has been a challenging year for everyone, especially those on the frontline. As well as propelling the importance of the care sector to the forefront of consciousness, the pandemic has put a much-needed spotlight on the vital link between good food and nutrition and good care and wellbeing. It is important that we keep the momentum around this conversation and that’s exactly what our competition can do, whilst also celebrating care chefs and giving them the opportunities to develop both professionally and personally. “We are also delighted to be working with Unilever Food Solutions as the main sponsor. Our sponsors are essential to the ongoing success of the competition and we are grateful to Unilever Food Solutions for joining us and to the Worshipful Company of Cooks for their continued support. I look forward to an exciting competition ahead!” Alex Hall, Executive Chef at Unilever Food Solutions, said: “We are very excited and proud to sponsor the National Association of Care Catering (NACC) Care Chef of the Year competition in 2021. This competition provides a great opportunity and platform for care chefs around the country to showcase their skills and raise the profile of care catering. Our team at Unilever Food Solutions is delighted to be working alongside chefs within the care sector to ensure that every mealtime is the highlight of the residents’ day, be that supporting with activities to nutritionally analysed recipes, training, inspiration and competitions like this. We look forward to seeing how this year's competitors rise to the challenge and wish them the very best of luck.” Bev Puxley, Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Cooks, said: “We’re delighted to continue our sponsorship of the NACC Care Chef of the Year competition. Care catering is a hugely important sector of the foodservice industry and it’s vital that we recognise and celebrate the enormous talent and dedication of care chefs in this way. As longstanding head judge for the competition, I am also pleased that the Hygiene Award has been reintroduced. Hygiene best practice in the kitchen is crucial and has always been a key judging criterion, which the formal recognition now highlights.” For more information on the NACC Care Chef of the Year 2021 competition and to download an entry form visit

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Vaccine Passports And How Companies Can Collect Covid-19 Data With countries across the globe working tirelessly to vaccinate their residents against Covid-19, thoughts are now turning to the practicalities of reopening the global economy.

Africa, going forward we are more likely to see an app-based solution.

Whether the UK utilises the existing NHS app (not to be confused with the NHS Covid-19 app), which currently provides a record for all immunisations, joins the digital green pass scheme with its European counterparts, or works with the WHO on a global initiative, current EU and UK legislation dictates any data regarding the health of an individual held by a company is classed as a ‘special category’ personal data. This is stringently regulated and anyone collecting this type of data must follow strict guidelines to ensure it is held securely and processed lawfully.

One suggested tool to enable this is to create a digital vaccine passport – or ‘green pass’ as it is being called by EU leaders who plan to publish their legislation shortly. Holders could potentially resume travelling between countries, attend major events and, for those who cannot (or will not) have the vaccine, it could record negative Covid-19 test results. The question is, how much of our lives will be restricted if we do (or don’t) have such a passport? Would it be used to screen job applications? Could it stop us visiting retail outlets? Will pubs and clubs demand our vaccine passes alongside ID? More importantly for business owners, what can we legally ask of our customers and staff without overstepping data protection legislation? These are important questions to ask, especially for consumer facing organisations such as retailers and the hospitality sector looking to reopen in the near future. Rob Masson, CEO at The DPO Centre (, a data protection officer resource centre, said this is a potential minefield for companies already grappling with GDPR, Brexit and the impact of a global pandemic. Rob said: “Until we know the final arrangements for a vaccine passport, we can only plan for what we think might happen and discuss the balance and reasonable steps an organisation will need to take

Masson adds: “As the UK moves through the road map out of lockdown, and the role of vaccine passports becomes clearer, decisions need to be made by any consumer facing business planning to reopen.

between an individual’s right to privacy and the wider impact on the public’s health. “For example, retailers don’t currently stop customers at the door and ask about their health. So, will it be seen that the Covid-19 passport is a necessary invasion into our privacy?” It looks increasingly likely that technology will play a major part in whatever the solution ends up being. Although anyone vaccinated in the UK currently receives a paper-based notification, not too dissimilar from the Yellow Fever certificates issued for those visiting parts of

Firstly, if it is important to your business to ask either your customer or your staff whether they have either had the vaccine or have received a negative Covid-19 test, what is the legal basis for asking and processing the information? Secondly, how should this data be securely held and for how long? Finally, who can we share this information with and for what reason? Rob said: “With Brexit and Covid-19, many companies are facing increased pressure and scrutiny around data protection and privacy issues. Data protection is one of the fastest growing areas of business in the UK and Covid-19 has placed it firmly at the top of the agenda for most organisations. It’s therefore vital that organisations understand their exposure to data and privacy risk as it imp

Care Home Provider’s ‘Magnificent Seven’ Complete Nursing Associate Training Seven trailblazing colleagues at a top-rated south coast care home provider are set to become Registered Nursing Associates after completing a two-year foundation degree course. Colten Care partnered with Southampton Solent University to offer the training to carers keen to progress into professional nursing. Despite practical work placements and face-to-face tuition being impacted by the pandemic, the first Colten cohort have passed with flying colours. Among the grades, there was a Distinction for Vicky Acott, Care Coordinator at Colten’s Poole home, Bourne View. It means she was one of only three trainees from the overall 70strong year group to achieve more than 70% in her assessments. Vicky said: “It’s been full-on and an amazing opportunity for all of us. You have to balance work, study and home life but we’ve had a big support network and lots of resources. We’re privileged that Colten Care has funded us to do this. It’s all about gaining more skills to do nursing.” Three colleagues from other Colten homes - Ligia Dragoi, Kim Gritt and Michael Von Bruggenberg Rothschild - achieved Merit awards, reflecting grades of 60% or above. Nursing Associate is a nationally recognised role designed to bridge the gap between carers and registered nurses and leading to formal enrolment with the Nursing and Midwifery Council. For those who want to, there is an opportunity to take the qualification further and follow an 18-month course to become a Registered General Nurse. In addition to qualifying, Verena Thomas, Senior Care Lead at Colten’s Chichester home Wellington Grange, was shortlisted for

in Lymington. She joined Colten Care as a Healthcare Assistant ten years ago and was promoted to her current role after completing Level 2 and 3 healthcare qualifications. Charlotte said: “I’m keen to get stuck in and learn new skills so I can progress further. I‘m looking forward to the clinical side and would love to become an RGN.” Likewise, Kerrie Cox, Senior Care Lead at The Aldbury in Poole, a dedicated dementia care home, said: “I’m really excited about starting something new. I’ve been mentally preparing for juggling everything in my life and learning as I go.” Elaine Farrer, Colten Care’s Operations Director and a registered nurse herself, said: “Our first cohort of trainees have proved both inspirational and trailblazing - they truly are our magnificent seven. Solent University’s Health Apprentice of the Year award. The mother-of-three said: “I would definitely advise anyone who is pursuing a career in healthcare to go for it if they have the opportunity. “It has been tough, especially in the last year with my children in lockdown and having to rejig our placements so that instead of going to community nursing we have done them within Colten Care. “It has also been difficult to have our university tuition done on Zoom rather than face to face, but it has been a brilliant course and the two years have gone by so quickly.” A second group of Colten colleagues are set to complete their first year on the course and a further eight have just begun. Among them is Charlotte Hurford, Senior Care Lead at Court Lodge

“Supporting our team’s career development is at the very heart of our approach to care. “It’s an essential factor in all 21 of our homes being registered for nursing care and seven of them being rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission.” Jan Parker, Solent University’s Head of Nursing and Social Care, said: “In collaboration with Colten Care, we are supporting the nursing workforce by providing a real-world curriculum and working with a clear vision of health and care needs in our society today. “Colten Care have invested in their staff by supporting them on the nursing associate programme. “Together we are dedicated to continuing to deliver excellent teaching and practice experiences to promote expertise of knowledge and care, supporting the individuals and communities we serve.”

Hallmark Care Homes To Pay All England Employees The Real Living Wage Multi-award-winning care provider, Hallmark Care Homes, has announced that all its team members in England will be paid at or above the rate set by the Real Living Wage Foundation from the 1st of April 2021. This means care worker salaries will now start from £9.50 per hour and £10.85 in London. The increase will ensure a full-time worker paid the new £9.50 Real Living Wage will receive more than £1,200 in additional wages annually compared to someone on the national minimum wage. For a full-time worker in London this figure rises to more than £4,000. The family run care group with 13 homes in England, three of which are rated outstanding by the Care Quality Commission has made the decision to recognise their employees for their dedication and resilience, over the past year. Welsh team members have also been recognised with an increase above the minimum wage meaning they will receive at least £9 per hour. This comes on top of a half million-pound bonus paid to all care home-based team members before Christmas with

employees receiving on average £250 each. Executive Chair of Hallmark Care Homes, Avnish Goyal said: “We have an amazing, caring and dedicated workforce and as part of our commitment to Championing Social Care the team need more than an applaud for the vital role they play in caring for older people. “The pandemic has further shown the need for the care sector to be recognised as a skilled profession and be rewarded appropriately. These pay increases are another step in the right direction on our quest to achieve this.” People and Performance Director at Hallmark Care Homes, Elizabeth Fairchild said: “We are committed to supporting the aspirations of our team through not only providing high-quality training and personal development but also in how we reward them. “We hope these pay rises will reflect our gratitude for their outstanding work this past year as we look forward to the future”.


Egg-traordinary Easter Celebrations at HC-One Care Homes

HC-One care homes have been celebrating Easter with a variety of egg-citing and egg-stra special Easter themed activities. With homes taking part in arts and crafts, and one home even raising their own chicks! At Highgate Care Home in Uddingston, Glasgow, Residents have been busy showcasing their creativity in an Easter-themed arts and crafts session, by making eye-catching Easter egg window artwork. Residents created colourful Easter egg stained glass window designs using plastic pocket sheets, acrylic paints and Easter egg templates. Residents thoroughly enjoyed creating their own Easter themed designs, which the team then laminated and proudly displayed in the home’s windows. Highgate Care Home’s Manager, Jennifer McKellar said: “It’s great to see our Residents exploring their creative side, the Easter egg art is egg-ceptional.” Residents at Newlands Care Home in Heaton Moor, Stockport, have also been participating in a variety of arts and crafts activities including making Easter cards to send to loved ones and creating their own art pieces in the form of watercolour paintings. Using new watercolour paints bought specially for the occasion, Residents enjoyed experimenting with

creating different shades through blending and fading the colours. Residents Geoff, Marg, Mo, Vera, Pauline and John also enjoyed designing their own Easter cards to give to their loved ones on Easter Sunday and wish a hoppy Easter to some-bunny special. Residents coloured them in with pen, felt tips and watercolours, and the finished cards looked amazing. Home Manager at Newlands Care Home, Rebecca Murphy commented: “We have some artists here at Newlands and there were some egg-cellent pieces of work. We are thinking of getting some canvases to paint on now as the activity went down so well.” Colleagues at Roseland Court Care Home in Tregony, held an Easter bonnet making craft session for Residents in celebration of the occasion. Residents got to work decorating straw wicker hats with fluffy chicks, eggs, bows, ribbons and flowers which transformed the simple and plain bonnets into a beautiful Easter bonnet, perfect for wearing in the glorious spring time weather. The Residents really enjoyed participating in the crafts session and were all ears whilst sharing stories and jokes with each other. Afterwards Residents enjoyed modelling their

newly designed hats for others to see, as well as finishing off the day with a surprise treat of creme eggs. At Foxton Court Care Home in Morpeth, Residents and Colleagues welcomed some new additions to their family ahead of Easter weekend. Residents and Colleagues at the home collaboratively worked with Living Eggs to hatch their very own chicks. Everyone was excited and eager to witness the development of the ten eggs in the incubator and were delighted when they managed to capture a very special moment when three of the eggs hatched. Eventually all ten eggs hatched bringing four boys and six girl chicks into the home. Holding the newborn chicks was a highlight for Residents, for some it was their first time holding a chick, whilst for others it brought back happy memories and experiences of caring and visiting animals when they were younger. The Residents were amused and also surprised that the girls were not yellow in colour, but ginger with a striped pattern. The chicks resided at the home for a couple of weeks where Residents and Colleagues enjoyed car-

ing and looking after them, watching them grow and develop. They have since been given to a more permanent home, where they’ve been welcomed by a Colleague’s father who has an allotment where he cares for chickens. The home is currently exploring and looking into the idea of getting a coop for the garden so that they can keep a couple of the chicks as permanent Residents when they are old enough to stay outside. Residents enjoyed the opportunity to take lots of photographs with the chicks which they have used to make personalised Easter cards for their loved ones. Foxton Court’s Home Manager, Joanne Bulford stated: “The chicks brought so much happiness and laughter to our home, seeing our Residents with them was truly heart-warming.” Stacey Hogg, Wellbeing Coordinator at Foxton Court Care Home said: “It was so fascinating watching them hatch and grow, it was amazing watching how gentle the Residents were, even those with memory problems. We are very interested in doing it again and are looking into more pet therapy as the stimulation was eggceptional to watch.”

Magnolia Court Celebrates Easter In Style Staff and residents at Barchester’s Magnolia Court care home, in Golders Green, celebrated Easter with a whole host of different activities including an Easter Egg Hunt, virtually attending a live church service, Easter tea party, Easter cake-making. Residents at Magnolia Court enjoyed an eggs-tensive range of Easter activities, from egg painting, virtually attending a live church service to making hot cross buns and a visit from the Easter bunny. Residents also tucked in to a delicious Easter meal of roast lamb followed by Easter cake prepared by the home’s head chef Alfred.

General Manager, Octavian Stanciu said: “As always, we’ve all been looking forward to Easter. It’s such a nice time of the year – the residents love all the colourful Easter eggs and the Easter tea party. It’s really been an eggs-cellent few days!” Bill Crowhurst, resident Ambassador at Magnolia Court said: “It has been a lovely few days, though like every Easter, I think I’ve eaten too much chocolate! It was so wonderful to see everyone go to so much effort. I really enjoyed Easter eggs hunt.”

Bonnets, Bunnies and Buns; a Care Home’s Eventful Easter Weekend RESIDENTS at an Edinburgh care home welcome the Easter holidays with a splash of creativity with personalised Easter bonnets ahead of an eventful weekend. Featuring an Easter Egg Hunt, Easter Service and a visit from the Easter Bunny, the staff at Mansfield Care’s Belleville Lodge has gone above and beyond to give residents an exciting Easter. Leading up to the festivities, residents have spent the last week decorating bonnets by making paper flowers and bunnies to decorate their hats. Following the arts and crafts, residents will be able to attend an Easter service along with festive hymns, followed by fresh hot cross buns in the lounge. On Sunday, if weather permits, the residents will hopefully be able to take part in an Easter egg hunt, organized by the staff in the Belleville Lodge garden with a visit from the Easter Bunny. Margaret Russell, Manager at Belleville Lodge said: “With the current restrictions we are unable to have a church service so we thought we would have one ourselves on Good Friday, and have a few Easter hymns.

“The residents love afternoon tea; so we’ve also planned one after the Easter service with Hot cross buns. “Easter is a really special time of year for some of our residents and so we always make an effort to do something special. The residents love decorating Easter bonnets, it’s a very relaxing and creative activity for them.” Mardie Esterkin, 87, a resident at Belleville Lodge said: “It’s a nice ceremony and celebration to have. “The place is decorated with bunnies and a Happy Easter sign hanging above the window. It’s just nice to celebrate this happy occasion. Easter is a lovely time of year.” Bet Gordon, another resident at Belleville Lodge who took part in the decorating said: “It is a special time of the year as spring is coming. The home is decorated with lots of daffodils which is lovely. “I love the afternoon teas with Matron, she always makes them so special. “I am looking forward to the Easter Egg hunt in the garden and the visit from the Easter Bunny.”


Good Eggs – Bury St Edmunds Care Home Wishes Local Children A ‘Hoppy’ Easter

A Bury St Edmunds care home has donated some special treats to local children this Easter. Team members and residents at Care UK’s Glastonbury Court, on Glastonbury Road, surprised the children at Little Teapots Pre-School with cards and treats to celebrate Easter. As part of their own egg-cellent celebrations, including an Easter egg hunt and raffle, residents at

Glastonbury Court were keen to spread the festivities out into the local community too. Head chef, Glenn Eldridge, created goody bags for each child, while residents created their own cards for their younger friends. Melissa Cuevas, Home Manager at Glastonbury Court, said: “We love celebrating Easter at Glastonbury Court, and we are keen to find new ways to connect with the community while restrictions are in place. “Prior to the pandemic, the children from Little Teapots often visited us at the home, and although we are unable to see them in person at the moment, we wanted to send them a special treat to let them know we can’t wait to see them as soon as we are safely able. “Intergenerational relationships have many benefits for older people, from offering an increased sense of purpose, to providing an opportunity to reminisce about their younger years. Everyone loved making the cards, and we hope our friends at Little Teapots enjoy tucking into their chocolate treats!”

Egg-Citing Afternoon For Care Home Residents

Residents at a Somerset dementia care home have been getting in the mood for the Easter weekend with a range of egg-citing activities arranged by the activities team. Organiser Richard Dempslake and his team supported the people living with dementia at Camelot House and Lodge in Wellington to engage in a range of themed activities, including one that proved to have special appeal for those with sensory loss – applying feathery decorations to t-shirts. Residents were also supported to make and decorate Easter eggs and chick cut-outs, creating a colourful backdrop for their seasonal activities, as well as to design and create Easter trees using old wood

found in Taunton’s Vivary Park. Richard Dempslake said: “Our residents really liked the idea of recycling the branches and enjoyed creating something new out of them. “Making bird masks and chick headbands was also a great hit and we wore some of them while performing a selection of spring-themed songs together. “We sang old favourites such as The Birdie Song, The Ugly Duckling, Tulips from Amsterdam, as well as Who’s That Chick by Rihanna, which they love. “Special chocolate bunnies were awarded to residents who sang the loudest or made up their own dance routines, and there were Easter treats for everybody.

Hunters Down Care Home Reception Is Magically Transformed Into Willy Wonka Chocolate Hunters Down Care Home in Huntingdon staff have been fully dedicated in making their residents a magical Easter display. After many discussions with the residents it was decided to turn the reception area into Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. As you walk towards the entrance and see the purple Wonka sign with lights through the golden Wonka name and purple balloons up the sides and is an “enchanting sight” to your imagination go wild! Some of the wonderful displays from the story to see include: • Charlie and his house with his four grandparents in the same bed • Chocolate fountain with pipes filled of the chocolate liquid running around the walls

and ceiling • Willy Wonka and three Oompa Loompas • Augustus Gloop stuck in the chocolate tube • Violet blown up like a blueberry • Likable wallpaper • & much more Residents have enjoyed helping and amazed how it has evolved throughout the weeks, with staff eager to showcase the factory over the Easter Celebrations. Special chocolate Wonka bars were given out and 5 of them had a golden ticket for special prizes. Edible chocolate fountains were placed around with giant marshmallows to dip into the smooth velvety running chocolate. To see a tour of Hunters Down Chocolate factory at Easter on their Facebook page

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Covid Vaccinations - What Are the Implications for Employers? By Sarah Hayes, a solicitor in the employment team at Paris Smith ( IS IT A LEGAL REQUIREMENT FOR PEOPLE TO GET THE COVID-19 VACCINE? The government have made it clear that the vaccination will not be a legal requirement. The government guidelines on vaccinations say that individuals must be given enough information to enable them to make a decision before they can give consent. The Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 gives the government the power to prevent and control an infection. However, it specifically prevents a person from being required to undertake medical treatments such as vaccinations.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR EMPLOYERS? The distribution of the vaccine will likely come as a relief for businesses and employers. There is now a light at the end of the tunnel that normal working operations can slowly resume and more employees will be able to return to the workplace. However, not every worker will want to be vaccinated and this is likely to be a topic which is increasingly raised over the coming months. The government has identified that this is a “complex” topic. A question that is likely to arise is whether it is ethical and legal for employers to request staff to be vaccinated before they return to the workplace, particularly when some will refuse for religious, philosophical or health care reasons. An employer who requires employees to receive a vaccination could potentially be open to the risk of a discrimination claim on the grounds of disability, age, religion or belief. In addition, if an employer were to dismiss an employee for the reason of refusing to take a vaccine, they

may be opening themselves up to an unfair dismissal claim, assuming that the employee has at least 2 years of service.

CAN AN EMPLOYER DISMISS AN EMPLOYEE WHO REFUSES TO TAKE THE VACCINATION? An employer may dismiss an employee who refuses to comply with a reasonable management request. Therefore, if it is considered that taking the vaccine is a reasonable management request, an employee may be able to be dismissed for refusing to comply. This will require careful analysis on a case by case basis and will depend on the specific circumstances. If an employee is refusing to take a vaccination and is also refusing to come into the workplace, an employer should firstly consider alternatives such as change of role, regular testing or permanently working from home. Where contact with customers, clients or other employees is necessary, steps may need to be taken when employees are refusing to come into work. However, if an employee is refusing to take the vaccine for legitimate reasons and is still happy to come into work, an employer would be illadvised to dismiss them. An employer should thoroughly consider an individual’s reasons for refusing to take the vaccine before making any decisions. Whether an employee can be dismissed for this reason would depend on whether the employee’s refusal to comply with the request is reasonable or not. Whether this is a reasonable request will involve a consideration of where the employee works. For example, UK healthcare employers must ensure that their employees do not present a risk of infection to patients, so may have a stronger defence to an unfair dismissal claim. However, as mentioned above, employers will have to be aware of the possibility of opening themselves to the risk of discrimination or unfair dismissal claims by insisting on their staff having a vaccine.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR THOSE WHO ARE ‘EXTREMELY CLINICALLY VULNERABLE’? The government has now published the COVID-19 Response – Spring 2021, setting out the roadmap out of the current lockdown for England. Subject to the government’s assessment of the current data against the

four tests contained in the roadmap, this will result in a gradual lifting of the restrictions over coming months. The risk therefore lies with the situation when an ‘extremely clinically vulnerable’ person refuses to take the vaccine but there are no longer protective restrictions in place. If ‘extremely clinically vulnerable’ individuals refuse to take the vaccine this is going to be difficult for employers to manage, particularly if the individual is also refusing to go to work. There are a range of options available to employers where high-risk employees are not comfortable with going to work. This includes use of the furlough scheme, suspending on full pay, allowing employees to take annual or unpaid leave and sick leave. However, as time goes on these options may be less commercially viable, in particular when businesses return to their normal workload. Employers should also be aware that employees have statutory rights meaning that they have protection from any detriment or dismissal when they have decided not to return to work, because there are circumstances of danger where the employee reasonably believes this danger is serious or imminent. The belief must be genuine and reasonable; therefore, once the vaccine has been fully introduced, the belief will likely become less reasonable. As stated above, an employer may consider taking disciplinary action against an employee who refuses to take a vaccine and also refuses to return to work, on the basis that it is a breach of an employer’s reasonable instruction. In order to proceed, employers should take all appropriate steps to make their workplace COVID secure. This option may be more appropriate where employees who are not clinically vulnerable are refusing to return to work as these employees are, arguably, less likely to prove a reasonable belief in an ongoing and serious imminent danger. Employers should consult with their employees to understand their concerns and discuss how risks will be managed. Employers should also carry out a proper risk assessment and take the appropriate steps to mitigate these risks.

Sunrise Senior Living UK and Gracewell Healthcare Shortlisted At Recruiter Awards Sunrise Senior Living UK and Gracewell Healthcare’s Recruitment Team has been named on the shortlist for the ‘Best In-House Recruitment Team’ category at this year’s Recruiter Awards.

estimated £1.3m to a remarkable £955,000. The Recruitment Team at Sunrise and Gracewell are now set to take key learnings from the pandemic and implement further improve-

The Recruiter Awards are the UK’s most prestigious and widely celebrated awards in the recruitment industry and recognise outstanding practice in the sector.

ments, including making additional enhancements to the candidate experience. The care home provider is also exploring ways to welcome in more apprentices into the organisation to encourage young

Sunrise and Gracewell secured their place on the coveted shortlist after mounting a highly effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic led by a new Rapid Recruitment Team. This team’s relentless dedication saw them take on additional responsibilities and increased workloads to ensure that residents continued to receive industry-leading care by maintaining a sufficient supply of talented team members. For example, the team reached out to those businesses particularly effected by the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, including in the hospitality and retail sectors, to expand their horizons when looking for new talent. The Recruitment team also started to use innovative tools to attract candidates on social media, such as targeting advertisements to people who, although may not be considering a career in care, are likely to hold the values and skills which are needed to succeed. As a result of their efforts, the Recruitment Team reduced the amount of overtime completed by team members by 30% year on year between 2019 – 2020, despite facing the challenges created by

people to enter the care sector for long-term careers. Sunrise and Gracewell will discover if they have been successful in their category on 23rd September 2021 at the in-person Recruiter Awards Ceremony at JW Marriot Grosvenor House in London. Speaking of their shortlisting, Sharon Benson, Human Resources Director at Sunrise and Gracewell, said: “Over the last 12 months, the dedication and tenacity displayed by each individual and team at Sunrise and Gracewell has played a vital role in our efforts to effectively manage the COVID-19 pandemic. The work of our Rapid Recruitment Team has also proven invaluable, and COVID-19. The amount of team members leaving the organisation also fell by 23% following the introduction of improvements to their onboarding programmes and offering enhanced rewards and benefits packages to existing team members. And, by the end of 2020, Sunrise and Gracewell had reduced the cost of recruitment from a previously

this shortlisting is a well-deserved recognition of their work during this challenging time. Sunrise and Gracewell look forward to building on our successes as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, always ensuring that our team members continue to work in purposeful, rewarding and fulfilling environments.”

Royal Star & Garter Veterans Receive Covid-19 Vaccine Residents at Royal Star & Garter’s three Homes have received their second Covid-19 vaccines. The doses were administered at the charity’s care homes at the end of March. The veterans had their first vaccines at the beginning of January. Royal Star & Garter provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia, from Homes in Solihull, Surbiton and High Wycombe. More than 87% of active staff have also been vaccinated across the three Homes. Margaret P, a resident at the High Wycombe Home, said: “It is a relief to have had the second vaccine.” And Margaret R from Solihull, said: “I was happy when I

had the first vaccine and I’m even happier now I’ve had the second dose!” Speaking in January after residents received their first dose, Pauline Shaw, Royal Star & Garter’s Director of Care, talked about the importance of vaccines, and her delight that it was now available to residents. She said: “My mother was permanently disabled from contracting a virus, poliomyelitis, in 1952 when she was just 26. The polio vaccination was made available in 1953 and has since prevented millions of people throughout the world from developing severe disability or dying. This is a living example of the impact of viruses and proof of the efficacy of vaccinations, as polio can now be prevented. The Covid-19 vaccine will provide protection for our residents who are vulnerable or elderly.”

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

Debbie Day of Cedars 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 April 30th 2021 at


How Music Unlocks Muscle Memory By Jackie Pool, Dementia Care Champion, QCS ( It’s the 1980s and a woman sings Men of Harlech, a traditional and stirring Welsh folksong. Nothing unusual about that you might think. Sung by choirs, on battlefields, and in rugby crowds, it’s a song that’s deeply embedded in the Welsh psyche. But 80year-old Hilda’s rendition was extraordinary. Hilda, you see, was living with advanced dementia. I remember the event as if it was yesterday. We were working together on an art project and in the background Men of Harlech began to play. As soon as the introduction started, to our astonishment Hilda rose from the sofa, clasped her hands in front of her and sang the lyrics all the way through perfectly in Welsh. What was most remarkable was that usually Hilda appeared to be completely disengaged from her surroundings. She spent all of her days sitting on the sofa with her eyes closed, and I had never heard her speak. My belief was that Hilda was unable to do anything – but how wrong I was.

UNLOCKING MEMORIES What I learned that day was that If you find the right prop – it becomes the key to unlock the memories that may have seemed lost forever. That ‘key’ doesn’t have to be music, but it is a particularly effective tool to access meaningful moments. Why? Because music is processed and stored in so many different parts of the brain. Most activity providers know that, if we know an individual’s musical preferences and history of any particular songs and tunes that relate to specific times, we can selectively use music to stimulate those memories as a reminiscence activity and so enhance self-identity. But music can do so much more. Many of you will have seen the recent social media posting of a Prima Ballerina in her 90’s who is living with dementia. As she listens to Swan Lake, her movement memory is stimulated and she performs again with beauty and grace. Or perhaps you saw the recent item which featured Paul Harvey, an 80-year-old former composer, living with dementia. Against all odds, Mr Harvey retained his innate ability to play music and remember compositions. He was able to do so due to muscle memory.


This ability to still be able to complete well-rehearsed movement is called procedural memory and results in what is known as a skill. So, when we know that a person has a skill, be it playing a musical instrument or dancing a classical ballet, providing the right music and the opportunity will unlock that potential. Music is particularly empowering as it not only supports a sense of self, but also stimulates physical health – from providing rhythm for movement to providing rhythm for the heart rate. Even this knowledge can enable care providers to think carefully about the music that is available to support individuals; not only selecting the genre to suit individual preferences but even choosing music with the beat to stimulate either relaxation or alertness. I have often noticed that calm, relaxing music is being played in care home dining rooms when, actually, something with a faster beat would support more active dining One of the most important observations I have made over my many years of working with people with dementia is that, whilst music itself can unlock the potential of individuals, it is often the accompanying social interaction that helps to reconnect the person with others. The joy of sharing music by singing or humming together, dancing together, playing an instrument together or simply tapping along or swaying to the beat – it is the togetherness that enhances the mood and nurtures the spirit.

OTHER ACTIVITIES THAT UTILISE MUSCLE MEMORY But it is not just music-related activities that provide a ladder to seemingly lost memories. Any pursuit which bypasses the brain and utilises muscle memory - such as knitting for example - can deliver the same remarkable results. I believe that learning through muscle memory, while widely known in dementia circles, could be more extensively utilised. Take the design of a care home bedroom, for example. If you think of a person moving into one, he or she will be used to the set-up of their bedroom at home. They will know from repeated movement around the room, the exact location of the wardrobes, the chest of drawers, the bathroom, the light switches and the plug sockets from muscle memory. And this stops them from getting lost and confused.

MAKING THE MOST OF MUSCLE MEMORY IN A CARE HOME So why not recreate as similar as possible an environment for those living with dementia in their care home? While it might not be possible to create a room which is a carbon copy of a care home resident’s bedroom at home, it is certainly possible to replicate some furniture positions to enable them to navigate their way around the room using the same muscle memory that they would use at home. But of course it is not as simple as that. Dementia is a very complex and nuanced condition and those living with dementia have different levels of functional ability. The question is, how do you integrate the science of muscle memory into the culture of a care home while accommodate all abilities? The answer lies in the QCS PAL Instrument, which provides a highly

effective framework to help professionals assess the level of functional ability of clients with cognitive impairments. The instrument assesses those living with dementia on four levels. But what are the different levels and what do they mean? ‘Planned’ means that a person with dementia is capable of carrying out a task by themselves, although they may need help with activities that need high-level thinking such as problem solving. At a PAL Exploratory level, they would need guidance, which is broken down into multiple stages. Those operating on a PAL Sensory level, require the carer to demonstrate each step one at a time, while at a PAL Reflex level, the person needs extensive support from their carer. The QCS PAL Instrument supports care givers to understand the level of ability of the person. At a Planned Level, the person will be able to factually learn the new information about their room, for example, that the toilet door is right of the wardrobe. Identifying those at an exploratory and a sensory level will be important to understand that they will learn best through practising the repetition of movement, which enhances muscle memory. On this note, I’ll always remember the story of lady, who was living with advanced dementia at a home I worked in. She had become very anxious after not being able to find the way back to her room. We decided to teach her how to find her way by using muscle memory. Firstly, we taught her how to get to her room by using the lift. That meant she needed to know which button to press. We practised and practised, together and before long, her muscle memory kicked in, and she knew how to get to her floor. Afterwards, by constantly repeating the short journey from the lift to her room, she was able to get there unattended. It took time, but it was a liberating experience for everyone involved, and demonstrated the extraordinary power of muscle memory.

QCS POLICIES Back to music, which first alerted me to the remarkable capability of muscle memory, QCS has several policies in place, including a care plan and risk assessment for use when considering the use of meaningful music in every day activity, for example while helping the person to get dressed or to dine, as well as to support recreational activities. The National Activities Providers Association ( have some great ideas for supporting music based activities and the Royal College of Occupational Therapists, Living well through activity in care homes: ( the toolkit offers some great ideas for integrating activities and music. I will always be grateful for my experience in North Wales. Most of all it taught me about the magical effect that music can have on us all. It is liberating in the way it unshackles the mind, body and spirit. And most of all, as demonstrated in this article, it provides an accessible gateway to unlock learning through muscle memory. It has had an indelible effect on my life and can do on yours’ and your service users too. Why not give it a try?

Vital Eating Disorder Service To Remain In York After Upgrading To New Facility Minster Grange Care Home and Schoen Clinic York have joined forces to provide a new 15-bed inpatient facility for adults with diagnosed eating disorders and associated problems. The ground floor of the care home on Haxby Road in Clifton is now home to the service, which has relocated from its previous site in Haxby. The Maria Mallaband Care Group (MMCG) bought Minster Grange in January last year and has refurbished it to provide bright and modern accommodation and treatment spaces tailored to patient needs. Minster Grange, who provide residential and nursing care as well as care for those living with dementia, will continue to operate at the site with access to both units via the main entrance. Daniel Turner-Naylor, Regional Director said: “Being part of and supporting the community we serve is very important to us, as is building strong relationships within health and social care. We are very pleased to be working with Schoen Clinic.” “We know from our own experience what a difference it makes to families and individuals to have the right care and services locally. By providing a new home for Schoen Clinic York and refurbishing it to meet their needs, we are helping them to stay in the area and continue to care

for those in this community who rely on their vital services.” Schoen Clinic York comprises 15 en-suite inpatient bedrooms as well as tranquil and welcoming communal spaces including an occupational therapy kitchen, daily living room, a quiet room and a peaceful talking therapy room. Residents will also have access to the safe, secure and secluded landscaped gardens. Andy Davey, UK Managing Director of Schoen Clinic, said: “I am delighted that Schoen Clinic York has formed an alliance with MMCG, enabling us to deliver our first-class inpatient service for patients with eating disorders and associated problems, from our new home at Minster Grange. “We had to move from our previous site in York but we felt it was really important to stay in the city and immediately launched an extensive search for new premises. “We’re thrilled to be staying in the local area and caring for our community within an excellent facility. I know our colleagues will enjoy working within this lovely new environment, and our patients will receive the very best care within this safe and peaceful space.”

Director of Care Celebrates 20 Years’ Service at Veterans’ Charity Royal Star & Garter’s Director of Care, Pauline Shaw OBE, is celebrating 20 years with the charity. She joined on 4 April 2001, when the veterans’ charity was still based at its iconic Richmond Home. Over the years, the mum-of-three has helped oversee some of the biggest transformations in Royal Star & Garter’s 105-year history, including developing three new state-of-theart Homes, and an award-winning dementia care model. In a blog to mark her two decades, Pauline explained that her father and grandfather had been in the military, and that she has “always been very attracted to the commitment and sacrifice made by people who have served.” And she has been able to draw on her personal experience of having a mother who lived with disability and used a wheelchair for the benefit of residents. Pauline said: “It gave me a really good insight into what we should be looking to achieve to provide homely, enabling environments, fit for purpose which also bring joy to the lives of the people living in them.” Pauline said it is an “absolute privilege” to meet “incredible residents”, recalling a conver-

sation with a WWI fighter pilot early in her Royal Star & Garter career, and speaking of her pride at seeing staff deliver exceptional person-centred care. Discussing the OBE she was awarded in 2018 for services to veterans, Pauline added: “Nothing I’ve done has been achieved alone. Everything has involved being part of a team. It’s not a solo act, it’s a group effort working with the most amazing people.” Pauline lists the move from Richmond and the current Covid-19 crisis as among the biggest challenges she’s faced, whilst also looking forward at some of the hurdles the adult social care sector faces in the future. Paying tribute to her 20 years of service, Royal Star & Garter Chief Executive Andy Cole said: “Pauline has helped transform the charity and the care we provide to veterans. We are truly grateful for her dedication and passion. She inspires us all.” The charity is welcoming new residents to all of its Homes. For more information on this, and working with Royal Star & Garter, please visit:


“Raise a Cuppa” for National Tea Day – April 21, 2021 to challenge the Chinese monopoly. Different teas are created using different methods of harvesting and processing. Some undergo a process called oxidation which involves exposing tea leaves to oxygen in order to dry and darken them. This changes the flavor, aroma, and strength of the tea. This day aims to increase the number of tea drinkers in the world. It encourages tea drinkers to try new varieties of tea and to acquire better quality teas. National Tea Day is believed to have been started in 2005 as a promotion for tea. It is observed annually on 21 April.

NATIONAL TEA DAY FACTS According to, more than 3 million tonnes of tea are consumed worldwide. According to, the most popular teas are: 1) Darjeeling 2) English Breakfast 3) Matcha 4) Chai So, grab your cuppa and settle in for a read on how to celebrate this truly brilliant TEA DAY!

On the 21st April our nation of tea-lovers will celebrate National Tea Day! There is nothing more classically British than afternoon tea, which makes National Tea Day, April 21, a wildly popular occasion in the country. This love of tea dates back centuries and this fondness seems to only get stronger with time! National Tea Day’s slogan is “Brew More. Do More.” The vision is to inspire special moments with tea. Working with a variety of partner companies throughout the year, they desire to bring tea drinkers, tea servers and the entire tea industry together. Tea is the second most popular drink in the world, topped only by water. The biggest tea drinkers can be found in Turkey, Ireland, Britain and Russia, and despite the rising popularity of coffee, tea still reigns supreme in many parts of the world. With so many variants and cultures drinking tea, it is hard to pinpoint an exact date as to when the beverage was invented. It is believed to have originated during the Yunnan region during the Shang dynasty (1,600 BC-1,046 BC) as a medicinal drink. An early record of tea drinking is noted in the third century AD before spreading across the globe. It became a popular beverage in the 17th century in Britain, who went on to introduce its production in India

Make the Sustainable Switch with PG Tips With 33 billion tea bags enjoyed by tea-lovers every year in the UK1 and consumers being five times more likely to buy sustainable products2 there’s a clear demand for a cuppa that not only tastes good but does more for the planet. PG tips is the Nation’s fav cuppa3 and is the first major tea brand switch to 100% plant-based tea bags across its entire range of foodservice packs4. Discover fully plant-based tea bags for your foodservice Over the past year, more people have been brewing cuppas in the comfort of their homes and the latest PG tips TV campaign is encouraging tea-lovers to question what their tea bags are made of. As consumers start to enjoy brews out of home again, foodservices are also encouraged make the switch to a more sustainable cuppa. In foodservice alone, by switching to biodegradable tea bags we can reduce the amount of plastic used by 26 tonnes annually5 – that’s the weight of four and a half elephants! PG tips plant-based tea bags are derived from corn starch and can be disposed of in a food waste bin to biodegrade back to nature. Tea director at Unilever UK&I, Fiachra Moloney, explains: “As the nation’s largest producer of tea bags3, it is our responsibility to lead the way when it comes to helping people make more sustainable choices. Creating a fully plant-based range has not come without its challenges, but we’re glad to be in a position to offer a more sustainable cuppa, without compromising on the great taste we’re known and loved for.” “What’s more, PG tips has also made a big step to convert its Manchester factory, where the tea is blended and packaged, to become fully carbon-neutral, with 100% of the energy used coming from renewable sources.”

SMALL SUSTAINABLE CHOICE, BIG DIFFERENCE To spread the word, the brand invested in a substantial £3.6m above-the-line campaign last year, which was led by a prime-time TV advert. The ad featured a young girl hosting a tea party, where she tells her toy companions how each small sustainable choice can make a big difference. This was designed to highlight the confidence and ease that younger generations feel about accepting change, and inviting everyone to join them. Moloney continues: “We wanted our TV campaign to have a warm and heartfelt message that encouraged tea-lovers to question what their tea bags are made of and get them to think about making the switch to a more sustainable cuppa. It has never been more important to take care of our planet and, with this advert, we wanted to show that with small changes like switching to a fully plant- based tea, we can make a big difference.” Furthermore, all of PG tips tea is 100% Rainforest Alliance certified™ and sustainably sourced. PG tips is committed to ensuring its tea keeps building communities, improving people's livelihoods and respecting the environment. For more information about switching your tea bags to plant-based, foodservice operators are encouraged to visit or discuss further with their UFS sales representative. Sources: 1Kantar, 52 w/c 27.12.20. 2Nielsen, Volume (kg), MAT 19.11.20. 3Nielsen, Highest volume sold in kg, from volume (kg), Normal Black Tea, MAT w/c 26.12.20. 4Major tea brand refers to those with >10% share of sales value (%) Nielsen total tea mat 26.12.20. 5Based on 2019 Unilever sales volumes.


Managing Grief and Bereavement in the Workplace During a Crisis By David Price, workplace wellbeing expert and CEO of Health Assured ( SPOT THE STAGES OF GRIEF You may have noticed something different about your employee. Mood changes, quietness, outbursts. These are not necessarily grief— but when they're uncharacteristic, they can be an indicator. People can experience a wide range of emotions after a loss. According to the Kübler-Ross model—first outlined in Elisabeth KüblerRoss' seminal 1969 text On Death and Dying—there are five stages of grief: • • • • •

Bereavement is never an easy thing to deal with. Even when everything is going well, the sudden impact of loss can turn your whole life upside down. During a crisis, bereavement is even harder. Sadly, COVID-19 has meant some people have been facing bereavements they couldn't possibly have predicted—and they're facing them with distancing and isolation in place. Spending time apart from friends, family, and loved ones has been stressful for everyone—more so for those who are grieving. Someone who works for you may have tragically experienced bereavement during the coronavirus. Not necessarily due to COVID-19 directly—any loss in the last few months has been impacted by lockdown, distancing and isolation. Despite these changes, people need to grieve. And grieving people need support. Here are a few ways to offer your help in a difficult time— to help people cope during a crisis.

Denial, disbelief, numbness Anger, blame Bargaining Depressed mood, sadness, and crying Acceptance, coming to terms with a bereavement

There's no right or wrong way to feel when grieving. It can be an unpredictable time, and people can feel: • Shock and numbness—this is usually the first reaction to loss, and people often talk about "being in a daze" • Overwhelming sadness, with lots of crying • Tiredness or exhaustion • Anger—towards the person you've lost or just a general angst • Guilt—for example, guilt about feeling angry, about something you said or did not say, or not being able to stop your loved one dying Managers should learn about these symptoms of grief, so they can spot and deal with them effectively. Of course, this is especially difficult when more and more employees are working remotely. But simply having a good grasp of how people grieve makes you far more likely to spot it.

COMMUNICATE Again, this is much more difficult with distancing and remote work— but it's vital. Communicating effectively, confidently and compassionately with someone who recently suffered a bereavement important. You need to demonstrate emotional intelligence, reassuring and

assuaging any worries, while also ensuring your employee will be fit to resume duties as normal as quickly as possible. Regular phone calls are better than email or IM—assuming, of course, that the employee is receptive. Ask 'would you like me to call you again tomorrow?'—the answer will likely be yes.

OFFER BEREAVEMENT LEAVE When someone is grieving, they can sometimes act irrationally or be prone to strange behaviour. If they're not present in the office, this can be extra difficult to manage. Offering bereavement leave—while still offering those daily check-ups to ensure the employee has a caring outlet for their problems—could make all the difference to both the employee and those they work with.

BE PATIENT Bereavement is one of the most challenging times most people can experience. And it can take a long time to recover, especially in the tragic circumstances that coronavirus has forced some people into, unable to properly say goodbye to loved ones, or share their grief in the usual way. You may need to prepare for your employee to be absent for a while, as they recover and get back to their old selves. A sympathetic approach will help people make the transition back to work an easier one, so ensure good communication and use your discretion. Phased returns may be helpful in some circumstances, and flexible working requests may be necessary—for instance if an employee's partner has died, leaving them with sole responsibility for raising their children, or if the employee has lost a sibling, leaving them with sole responsibility for caring for ill or ageing parents. In all of these circumstances, you need to display that emotional intelligence once more and be as patient as possible. Demonstrate a willingness to be flexible and allow your employee to get their life in order with all the time they need, and they'll reward you with loyalty.”

Why choose SANOZONE? ■ SanOzone generates Ozone and completes a deep and accurate sanitation cycle ■ Ozone sanitisation is cheaper and faster than alternatives like fogging ■ Swiftly cleans and sanitises rooms of all sizes, removing harmful microorganisms ■ Reaches every corner of location, acting more rapidly than other disinfecting agents ■ Machine generates ozone from the air, which decomposes to oxygen after use

SANOZONE CLEANS INDOOR SPACES OF ALL SIZES FOR COVID SAFETY Ozone sanitising is the most effective way to deep clean residential environments of all sizes and it is easier, quicker, and more cost-effective than manual cleaning or fogging. Once in position, an easy-to-use key-pad enables the operator to set the optimal ozone concentration for the size of the room. The system then automatically converts the ambient air into ozone that fills the room, sanitising floors, walls, ceilings, surfaces and equipment. The complete sanitisation of an average sized room will take approximately two hours. This includes the production of ozone, maintaining the required concentration for total cleaning and then returning the room to its usual habitation state. SanOZone is one of the most versatile and efficient sanitisation systems available to healthcare, commercial property owners and facilities management companies. It offers many benefits over manual cleaning and we believe that it is three times quicker and more efficient than alternatives like fogging.

THE MAIN BENEFITS OF SANOZONE ARE: • Highly efficient in the fight against Covid viruses • Effective against the majority of microorganisms tested • Requires only low volumes of ozone to kill bacteria, fungus, parasites and viruses • A standalone system that eliminates the need for chemical substances • More cost-effective than traditional cleaning operations or materials • Automatic cleaning cycle; easy to move from room to room SanOZone units are fully mobile, easy to programme for hourly or daily cleaning and have acoustic and visual warning indicators for safe operation. As it creates its own ozone, no chemicals or additional cleaning products are required. There are no ongoing costs.

SanOZone Easybox systems are available from Barbel now, with prices starting from £1,750 ex VAT for the Easybox 5

For more information, contact Barbel on 01629 705110, email or visit the website at


Former Google Employee Shares Tips For Marketing Your Residential Care Home Online By Conor Hardy, Managing Director, Run PPC – Putting your business and its services in front of the right people online is a non-negotiable in today’s digital age, and while traditional marketing techniques such as offline advertising will continue to deliver results, keeping abreast of the latest digital strategies is essential. Add into the mix the challenges of coronavirus and the importance of having an effective online marketing strategy in place has perhaps never been more acute. As a former Google employee, I have seen digital marketing trends come and go, and techniques that were once hugely effective are now redundant, but staying up to date with what works and what doesn’t can be extremely challenging when you’re running a residential care home. So, what practical solutions can you put in place to ensure there are pairs of eyes on your services, which don’t require a huge investment of time? Well, a lot depends on how your customers find you and how you want them to find you. It makes sense to focus attention on areas where you are getting the most success, and I certainly wouldn’t encourage operators to abandon

strategies that are delivering results. But have you considered the techniques being used by your competitors and the audiences you could be missing out on? An often-neglected aspect of digital marketing in the residential care industry is SEO and PPC, and I know this to be the case because I’ve analysed the marketplace, both in preparation for writing this article and through my own work with operators in the sector. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and refers to the practice of ensuring your brand is at the top of search results – or close to it – for key search terms. Here’s a quick experiment you can try from your phone or laptop – search on Google for residential care home and the area you serve – for example, “residential care home dorset” – and take a look at the results generated. Does your name feature? Consider other terms that your audience may use to find businesses like yours. If your name isn’t appearing then these people simply won’t find you. So, what can you do about it? 1. Ensure your website is submitted to search engines – speak to your website manager to check that this box has been ticked. Free plug-ins like Yoast SEO (which works with WordPress websites) can help you do this in a few short steps. This allows Google to ‘crawl’ your website and add it to its directory.

Open Your Fire Doors to Residents When someone is no longer able to live alone their self-esteem can be severely affected and can sometimes lead to depression too. This is turn can have a negative impact on general health and happiness. Promoting independence within your care setting can have a massive impact on someone’s happiness, health and wellbeing. Care facility providers for the elderly have to make some incredibly important decisions to ensure that residents are safe and often make decisions on behalf of residents too. Providing a care setting that ticks all the right boxes to offer independent living can sometimes feel like a

bit of a juggling act. On the one hand you must adhere to fire safety legislation and on the other hand heavy fire doors that close automatically when opened, hinder your goals of promoting the highest levels of independence for your residents. Finding a solution that achieves both of these goals is not as hard as you may think. Fitting battery-operated door retainers, such as Dorgard, Dorgard SmartSound and Freedor SmartSound could not be easier and they provide you with a legal solution to holding your fire doors open. Easily installed by your own handyman they can be fitted to existing fire doors. These devices ‘listen’ for the sound of your fire alarm and on hearing

2. Ensure your website is as good as it can be – for your website to rank highly in Google, it should be up to date, fast loading and populated with relevant information. Adding a new blog post every couple of weeks will work wonders in the longer term. Slow, outdated websites will quickly slip down the search rankings as Google wants to show its users the best and most up-to-date answers to queries. 3. Consider Google Ads – An effective Google Ads campaign can send your business to the top of the search results for key terms. This requires a little investment, although a significant percentage of your total spend is dictated by the number of clicks your campaign receives. This is where the term PPC – or pay-per-click – comes from; the more successful your campaign is, the more you’ll pay. But if the value of a new customer is significant then the initial outlay is a real no-brainer. Alongside other digital strategies, such as engaging social media output, by taking these steps you can super-charge your digital marketing and ensure that your business is presented to a relevant audience that is ready to engage with you. I have worked extensively with operators in the residential care sector and have seen the good and the bad – and grown to understand that the phrase ‘getting out what you’re prepared to put in’ is rarely more relevant than when it comes to online marketing. it will automatically activate and allow your heavy fire door to close, preventing the spread of fire. Heavy fire doors can pose a problem for frail and less mobile residents, as they try and negate heavy fire doors just to move from one room to another. By fitting a fire door retainer, your fire doors will open with ease or be held in the open position to make corridors and rooms easily accessible, even for those who are wheelchair users or who use walking aids. To ensure that you can fit the right fire door retainer for your setting Dorgard have a range of products to chose from. For quieter areas, such as bedrooms or snugs Dorgard is ideal and for areas that are a little noisier, such as recreation rooms or dining rooms the Dorgard SmartSound is ideal and Freedor SmartSound offers the ability for a fire door to behave in the same way as a normal door, and can be pushed open with ease or will stay open at any angle. Open your fire doors to your residents to give them their independence back. If you would like to discuss your needs further with our knowledgeable customer care team please call 0800 612 6287 or visit

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

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

Chris Wakefield, Managing Director UK & Ireland, GOJO IndustriesEurope Ltd comments, ‘As a founder member of the WHO Private Organizations for Patient Safety group, we are strong advocates of making hand hygiene second nature to everyone – this past year has shown how this is more important than ever. We hope that this year’s campaign encourages everyone to do their part, as it takes commitment from all for hand hygiene programmes to be successful.

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

Care Home Industry Facing Customer Exodus Due To Infection Fears As care homes continue to contend with the ongoing challenges of COVID-19, new research reveals that care homes across the country are facing millions more in lost revenues due to customer fears around infection risk. According to the nationally-representative survey into 2,000 members of the public, more than one in three Brits (34.5%) are less likely to trust care homes with their loved ones’ care due to fears around infection. The findings also revealed that the overwhelming majority of the public (80.5%) would be reassured by visible proof that a care home takes cleanliness and infection control seriously. Significantly, 10.7% would be less likely to use a care home that did not have this proof, and 6% would no longer use a care home that could not prove that they adhered to the highest standards of hygiene and infection control. The research was carried out by infection control specialist JLA, a trusted partner to thousands of care homes across the UK, as part of its “Infection Insights” campaign to improve industry standards, customer reassurance and peace of mind across the care sector. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was revealed that the events of 2020 have prompted a nationwide change in attitudes towards hygiene and infection control, with 77% of the public holding greater concerns in this area than a year previously – attributing this change directly to COVID-19. Concerningly, over a fifth (20.4%) of the public also currently hold a poor opinion of hygiene and infection control in care homes, and do not believe standards are currently at the levels required. Just under a third

(30.1%) of Brits feel confident that care homes are clean and sanitised, and a further 10.7% reported that they believed standards are “excellent”. According to the research, 87.6% of Brits now deem it important that a business has a good reputation for hygiene and infection control, and 58.1% of these proclaim a positive standing for hygiene “extremely important”. This indicates that hygiene ratings – traditionally a significant indicator of quality for many care home customers – have also become more important than ever before in the eyes of the public. Ben Gujral, CEO at JLA, commented: “The events of the past year have laid bare the need for care homes to do everything they can to reassure anxious residents over the coming weeks, with major growth opportunities in store for those that do invest what is needed now. “Expectations of the businesses customers will trust their money – and their loved ones’ health – with are virtually unrecognisable from even a year ago and, at a time where care homes need the continued loyalty of their customers more than ever before, it is crucial that they action all possible infection control measures to put the public’s minds at ease. “Care homes that take the time to do this now will reap the benefits over the coming months, providing reassurance to those who need it, and ensuring the loyalty of customers both old and new for years to come.” For more information about JLA, the research findings and for products which can help with infection control, please visit:

ASAP Innovations Ensures Medi-Inn’s PPE Supply to UK Healthcare Sector is Maintained Throughout Pandemic Certified PPE manufacturer and leading supplier of medical and hygiene consumables join forces to ensure the UK healthcare sector continues to have access to certified PPE Following an unreliable and sporadic PPE supply during the beginning of the pandemic, supplier of medical and hygiene consumables, Medi-Inn partnered with ASAP Innovations, a leading manufacturer of medical PPE for the healthcare industries, to ensure dependable and trustworthy supply of critical equipment. Throughout 2020, Medi-Inn – which manufactures and distributes medical and hygiene products to the UK healthcare sector – saw its supplies of medical gloves became sporadic and unreliable due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Many central governments were buying PPE directly from manufacturers and as a result, manufacturing companies were bypassing distribution companies, even suppliers they had worked with for years. At the same time, demand continued to increase throughout the summer of last year and Medi-Inn was in need of a reliable and certified PPE provider that could ensure it was able to keep serving its customers at this difficult time. Wayne Dobson, Managing Director, Medi-Inn explains, “In 2020 we were approached by ASAP Innovations as it was seeking a glove distributor in the medical field. While the brand was fairly new to us, we were familiar with its impressive presence in Asia and everything we had heard about the manufacturer was very positive. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect as a partnership with ASAP Innovations meant

we were able to continue supplying certified and high-quality PPE to our loyal and longstanding customer base, at a time when they needed our supplies the most. “ASAP Innovations’ packaging stands out from other products on the market and it also incorporates a grading system so that the different glove types are easily identifiable, which – as far as we are aware – is fairly unique. In fact, this design feature of the products is something we leverage in our marketing activities as the colour coding certainly increases brand awareness. We have been particularly impressed with ASAP Innovations’ development initiatives and are looking forward to supplying its soon-to-be launched vitrile gloves and children’s face masks. “Despite the challenging circumstances we find ourselves in, the support levels we have received from ASAP Innovations has been second to none which has made our partnership run that extra bit smoother.

PPE is the sort of product where customers would complain if they had problems with the quality of the products and seeing as we have had no complaints about ASAP Innovations products, we have the reassurance that our customers are more than satisfied with its products. “When ASAP agreed to fulfil our requirement for the rest of 2020 and up until October 2021 we were delighted, and I believe this is just the beginning of a long-term relationship where Medi-Inn can help establish the brand in the medical and hygiene sector in the UK. We are excited for what’s to come from our partnership with ASAP Innovations and we look forward to expanding business with the manufacturer in the months ahead,” Wayne concludes. Sean Keller, Managing Director, ASAP Innovations adds: “We are delighted to have entered a partnership with a highly regarded supplier of medical and hygiene consumables to the UK healthcare sector. It goes without saying that healthcare workers have gone above and beyond to serve the public throughout what has been a very challenging year and we are very glad we have been able to continue supplying PPE to the people that need it the most, through our trusted partner, Medi-Inn. This is just the beginning of our partnership and we are thrilled to be able to continue providing certified PPE to the UK’s healthcare sector.” For further information, visit Medi-Inn at and ASAP Innovations at


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL GermErase Launches to Give Confidence to UK Businesses and Hospitals, With Efficacy Against SARS-Cov-2 First British commercial product to be tested on live SARS-Cov-2, the virus causing COVID-19 Multi-surface protector kills up to 99.9999% of pathogens in under 30 seconds and provides a protective barrier for up to 48 hours British scientific breakthrough can turn the tide against hospital infections and superbugs, while supporting vaccines in the fight against COVID-19 and saving the NHS billions GermErase, a new brand at the frontline of protecting against COVID19, infections and superbugs, has today launched its first product range. Available as a cleaning spray and a hand spray with wipes, with aerosols and hand wash to follow, GermErase is a unique formulation that kills up to 99.9999% of pathogens, including the virus that causes COVID-19, in under 30 seconds – faster and more effective than the next best product. It bonds to surfaces to provide total protection without any reduction in performance for up to 48 hours and remains effective for 28 days. GermErase has been tested to global standards in independent facilities at the University of Southampton, including on live strains of SARSCov-2. The British business has invested £1m in testing the product.

As 99.9% water, GermErase is safe and has low toxicity, meaning it does not irritate skin in the way alcohol gels can and, unlike alcohol gels, is not flammable. It uses common ingredients that have already been approved for medical and cleaning purposes and is ready to distribute at scale across the country via specialist cleaning supplier, Denis Rawlins Ltd. Professor Bill Keevil, Professor of Environmental Healthcare at the University of Southampton, comments, “An invention like this does not come across your desk very often. We have found that GermErase demonstrates remarkable breadth of efficacy against bacteria and viruses, speed of kill, residual efficacy and shows no evidence of antimicrobial resistance.” GermErase is more effective than alcohol gel and, alongside vaccines, can help to turn the tide against COVID-19 and a broad spectrum of other dangerous pathogens. While alcohol gels and sanitisers – products recommended by the World Health Organisation – are dependent on concentration levels and a lengthy period of application, GermErase is easy to use and completely kills the virus within seconds with a simple spray. The products can be used by medical professionals in hospitals but are also quick and easy to use by private sector businesses – giving employers and employees the confidence to return to work safely and unlock the economic recovery in the UK. GermErase will launch a consumer product range for the general public in Spring 2021. The urgency of antibiotic resistance is well known among the medical community and increasingly by wider society. GermErase provides a defence by preventing infection, instead of relying on the development of new cures and antibiotics.

Inspired by the most human of stories, GermErase was invented by Rob Scoones, a former retail business owner. After losing someone very close to him, Rob dedicated his life to eradicating the superbug crisis in our hospitals and worldwide. Through the relentless pursuit of this vision, Rob developed the GermErase product, combining common ingredients in a way that has delivered remarkable efficacy against all known pathogens, including SARS-Cov-2. It has been estimated that a 10% reduction in infections and superbugs in hospitals would save the NHS £1bn annually. GermErase can kill and protect against all known infections and superbugs and is available to use throughout healthcare facilities immediately. Matthew Higdon, Chairman of GermErase, comments, “Our intention is for GermErase to become the first line of defence against infection for hospitals, businesses and families across the country. This product will allow us to get our freedom back and live with peace of mind that we are protected against pathogens like Coronavirus. Our ambition is for this British breakthrough to represent a landmark moment in the fightback against COVID-19, infections and superbugs.” GermErase is the new British brand at the frontline of protection the fightback against coronavirus, infections and superbugs. It provides a new multi-surface protector proven to kill the virus that causes COVID-19 within 30 seconds and provides protection for 48 hours. Clinically proven to be more effective than alcohol gel or existing disinfectant, GermErase products are the breakthrough Britain needs to get back to work, turn the tide against the Coronavirus in healthcare and save the NHS billions of pounds handling infections and superbugs.

Regular Cleaning Plays a Vital Role In Limiting the Transmission of Covid-19 In 2020, TCFM completed over 500 nationwide Covid-19 decontamination and electrostatic sprays, in 4-hour response times National Coverage Over the last six months we have completed specialist Covid-19 cleans across a dynamic, nationwide portfolio of sites for clients in a variety of industries, ranging from retail, distribution to corporate. All calls for our Covid-19 cleaning solution have been attended to within 24 hours. Our electrostatic sprays kill Coronavirus on contact and offer up to 4 weeks protection from pathogens, providing you with: • A safe working environment • Employees which feel valued

• Credibility with your clients • Peace of mind TCFM is proactively working with a diverse portfolio of national customers to keep their sites safe including: Tesco, Yodel, Makro, RS Components, Travis Perkins, Wincanton and many others across a range of industries including distribution, retail, telecommunications and finance. TCFM’s national coverage is key to responding promptly to calls for the Covid-19 decontamination solution, which mitigates disruption to BAU at even their most remote sites. See the advert below for further details.

In 2020, TC Facilities Management (TCFM) completed over 500 nationwide Covid-19 decontamination and electrostatic sprays, in 4-hour response times. As we enter Lockdown 3.0, TCFM is continuing to keep their customers’ sites safe across the UK with their Covid-19 decontamination solution. The electrostatic spraying technology that TCFM offers provides 360° coverage to the premises, in contrast to traditional fogging methods which only protect surfaces. Environmentally f riendly, human and food-safe chemicals kill Coronavirus on con-tact, offering up to 4 weeks’ protection f rom pathogens. This solution provides TCFM’s customers with: A safe working environment;

Credibility with their clients;

Employees who feel valued;

Peace of mind.

Working tto Working o Minimise Disruption A Across cross a National Portfolio P ortffolio TCFM is proactively working with a diverse portfolio of national customers to keep their sites safe including: Tesco, Yodel, Makro, RS range of industries including distribution, retail, telecommunications and finance. TCFM’s national coverage is key to responding promptly to calls for the Covid-19 decontamination solution, which mitigates disruption to BAU at even their most remote sites.

Ho How wT TCFM CFM C Can an Suppor Supportt You You Thr Through ough Th The e Developing Developing C Covid-19 ovid-19 Cr Crisis isis TCFM is committed to supporting customers across the country to safeguard sites against Coronavirus as the situation continues to develop. To ensure they can deliver a solution tailored to the requirements of your premises, TCFM offers a f ree site visit and quote for their Covid-19 decontamination solu-tion and a certificate on completion. As many of your colleagues will be site-based, this will give them the peace of mind that you are committed to safeguarding their health and safety. This identifies TCFM as a trusted partner in the fight against Coronavirus. Haris Niksic, TCFM’s Head of Specialist Services, comments: “Our specialist service colleagues wor work extremely hard to prevent disruption d to y your our business while saffeguarding a saffe ew wor orking environment ffor or your colleagues and customers.”

To book your free site assessment & Covid-19 quote please visit: or contact Nicola Heywood directly on: 07920 539 265


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

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

Safe Infection Control Solution Gives Day Centre Residents Increased Reassurance Award-winning First City Nursing, provider of nursing care that is rated outstanding by the Care Quality Commission, was swift to develop a robust Covid-prevention protocol prior to re-opening its day-centres following the first lockdown of the current pandemic. Central to this protocol is MicroSafe® disinfectant, a new arrival in the UK, making First City Nursing one of the pioneers to adopt this 100% toxin-free, highly effective disinfectant and one that sets the gold standard in safe sanitisation. Covid-19 has forced us to look at infection control in a new way; none more so than in the care home and day-centre setting. There is mounting concern that many commonly used disinfectants may not be up to the job of dealing with a pandemic; contact time may be too long, efficacy questionable with often a moderate pathogen control and many include chemicals that could be harmful to health and the environment, especially when used with the frequency required to prevent spread of the virus. The vaccination programme has brought down levels of the virus substantially and in turn a reduction in cases; but with the opening of care homes to one visitor per resident from the 8th March, there is still a risk that residents could be exposed to a new variant which may be resistant to vaccines. Following the first lockdown, First City Nursing needed a disinfectant

that was effective, safe and easy to use around elderly and vulnerable residents in their care, particularly in day-centres where they gather for meals and socialising. It also needed to be kind to the environment and able to be stored safely. The day-centre environment, with a number of residents coming and going, could be a breeding ground for viruses and bacteria as well as contributing to the spread of Covid-19, therefore infection management is a top priority for First City Nursing. “The day-centres are essential to the residents’ mental as well as physical well-being and it is important that they feel safe, especially within the current climate. We are careful to disinfect everything that is touched by staff and residents right down to their bingo chips, cutlery and handrails so we have a handy spray for intermittent treatment between fumigation sessions before and after new groups enter the centres. It is super easy and time saving; we simply spray and leave it to dry naturally within about a minute. We will be relying on MicroSafe to help us reopen the day centres as soon as possible post lockdown” says Kerry Harris, Community Living Manager. MicroSafe is 99.9999% (Log 6) effective in killing viruses, bacteria and other pathogens within a contact time of 30 seconds, and has a proven track record of combatting epidemics around the world (MERS, SARS,

Ebola) as well SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) in Australia and the Middle East. Purazine introduced MicroSafe to the UK in 2020 in direct response to the pandemic. The result of 20 years’ research, the patented and internationally approved Microcyn® technology that makes MicroSafe so unique, uses an electrochemical process to produce Hypochlorous Acid (HOCl) similar to the natural HOCl produced by the human immune system to fight pathogens. This process results in a pH balanced disinfectant, that is free of harmful chemicals. MicroSafe can be ‘fogged’ as a fine mist to ensure that no surface is left un-sanitised. Historically, HOCl disinfectants’ shelf life was very limited but uniquely, MicroSafe remains shelf-stable for two years, needing no special storage, handling or disposal and is kind to the environment. Dr Hugh Martin, recent former Head of Agricultural Science at RAU and consultant with HOCl Trust said: “With this level of efficacy, contact time, shelf life and being non-corrosive, MicroSafe sets the gold standard in disinfectants making it ideal for use in clinical and care home settings as well as for general disinfection application.” Dr David Cox of Purazine who distributes MicroSafe in the UK says; “It is clear, with new variants still being discovered, that we are going to have to learn to co-exist with Covid-19 and other viruses in the future but it is vital that our solution to the virus does not cause additional problems. Increasingly, care homes are using MicroSafe as they have embraced the importance of putting measures in place to prevent Covid-19 that are free of harmful chemicals, efficient and easy to use, and most importantly limit the interruption in the vital care they provide for their residents.”

To book your Covid prevention protocol consultation please email or telephone 03300 880660 or visit


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL React-Air Pathogen Neutralisers

React-Air pathogen neutralisers have helped to ensure the safety of patients, visitors and staff in Britain’s care homes since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in Britain. Designed for use in virtually any indoor environment, the React-Air range utilises the power of UVC, HEPA 13 and activated carbon filtration to clean air and surfaces, killing viruses such as Covid-19, norovirus, flu and the common cold. Manufactured in the UK it is the only system of its kind and has already been successfully utilised in the fight against coronavirus in many care homes across the country. There are 4 products in the React-Air range including

the React-Air X - a portable air sanitiser designed for use in hospital and care environments. Using a unique UV-C light array, powerful fans drive the airflow through the decontamination chamber, neutralising bacteria, viruses, pollen and odours, delivering clean and sterile air to a room. It can be used whilst people remain in the room and generates no harmful gasses, and at a fraction of the price of leading portable ozone generators. When used in conjunction with normal cleaning techniques, it is highly effective in the fight against bacteria and viruses. Deborah Blick of Parmenter Care said, “We realised it was a way of keeping our rrsidents, staff and visitors safe, primarily during the pandemic but going forward when this does pass. It won't just be Covid it can deal with, but other pathogens - flu, norovirus and many others.” For further information, see the advert on this page or contact the Reaction Group Limited: or Tel: 0203 885 2299

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

Incomaster and Quattro waste disposers here in the UK, but also developing innovative and safe methods to enhance the servicing provisions that are available to customers. The recently launched allinclusive rental proposition has proven particularly effective and popular with new and existing customers alike, not least as it reduces the operational, maintenance and financing headaches from sites which have more critical matters to address. For more information about incontinence and bedpan waste disposal please feel free to contact the Haigh team on 01989 763131 or




CATERING FOR CARE Made For You Softer Foods For Dysphagia Made For You Softer Foods is a softer foods range of frozen ready meals. We offer a wide range of dishes, that are beautifully shaped and made with quality ingredients to provide a nutritious and satisfying meal, suitable for people who experience chewing or swallowing difficulties known as dysphagia. The Made For You range includes 80 dishes to choose from including chicken, beef, lamb, fish and vegetarian recipes. We also offer a tasty selection of lighter bites, desserts, and breakfast

options as well as mini meals for those with smaller appetites. All our meals have been prepared in line with the IDDSI Framework. • Delicious softer foods frozen ready meals • 80 dishes to choose from • IDDSI compliant • Suitable for a Level 4 Puréed, Level 5 Minced & Moist, Level 6 Soft & Bite-Sized diet. • No contracts – secure online or telephone ordering process • Clear and easy to use cooking instructions on every sleeve To find out more about Made For You and our softer foods range at


Radnor to Launch First Vitamin D Spring Water Drink in Tetra Pak Packages Wales’ leading family owned branded soft drinks company is launching a new product to help customers to get their daily vitamin D dose. Radnor Vits, which will launch on March 1st, is the first vitamin D flavoured spring water in Tetra Pak® packages. Designed to be strawfree, you can drink it straight from the pack. Public Health England and NICE advise that 10 micrograms of vitamin D are needed every day for healthy bones and muscles. Everyone is advised to take a vitamin D supplement between October and March, when the sun is too low in the sky for our bodies to naturally make vitamin D from sunlight. Vits is a low-calorie sugar-free drink which is also suitable for Vegetarians and Vegans. It comes in two flavours: Lemon & Lime and Apple & Raspberry. Radnor is targeting listings in supermarkets and health stores as well as care homes and hospitals. Vits is also available to buy as a three-pack from Radnor’s own online shop and also from Amazon. Radnor Vits’ benefits include: Vitamin D – Contributes to the maintenance of normal muscle function, cell division, teeth and bones. Copper - Contributes to the maintenance of normal connective tissues. Folic Acid - Helps make healthy red blood cells

Selenium - Contributes to the maintenance of normal hair, nails, immune system, and thyroid function. Zinc – Contributes to metabolism, brain function and normal. William Watkins, Owner and Managing Director of Radnor, said: “When we heard that 20 per cent of the British population is deficient in vitamin D, and that this is a growing problem thanks to Lockdown and people staying indoors, we decided to create a new daily drink to help tackle the problem. “Radnor Vits is the first functional drink of its kind in Tetra Pak® packages and, as well as providing your daily dose of vitamin D, it also contains other vital vitamins and minerals to help support a balanced diet. “Our new drink, designed as your once-a-day vitamin and minerals boost, increases your daily intake of vitamin D and other recommended vitamins and minerals up to 200%.” Over the past 12 months, there have been reports about vitamin D potentially reducing the risk of coronavirus and the Government is keeping a close eye on the results of trials currently underway. Trade samples are available on request by emailing Radnor’s online shop Radnor’s Amazon shop

Planning Your Catering Budgets with allmanhall Alain Bremond-Torrent mused, “Sardines or not sardines, that is the question.” Or indeed, some salmon, but what should it all cost? In the face of unprecedented and extraordinary cost pressures, planning your budgets for the coming year is challenging. allmanhall ( can help. Covid-19 has brought enormous pressure, with operational compliance costs and additional PPE taking their toll. Then there is Brexit – although a trade agreement has been struck, food costs are rising. All exacerbated by escalating business rates. Food and catering related costs are a significant element of any care home or group’s budget. Scrutiny of key areas will enable planning and ensure good due diligence. You may not have benchmarked your suppliers’ pricing for months if not years. How do your suppliers compare? Recipes should be accurately costed and areas for greater efficiencies and savings identified.

These unprecedented times present an opportunity - now may be the time to challenge long established ‘norms’, rethinking and reviewing your budgets for the better. Contact independent food procurement specialists, allmanhall to arrange your free of charge benchmark via See the advert on the facing page for details.

DISCOVER THE NEW MATCHING TOOL THAT WILL SHOW YOU WHICH BOUILLON IS BEST FOR YOUR NEEDS When it comes to creating great dishes for residents living in care settings, a quality base is key. With a good bouillon or stock at the base, chefs can transform everyday favourites into rich, flavoursome dishes. Knorr® Professional is the UK’s number one brand for bouillons in foodservice*. They’re passionate about providing chefs in the care sector with the building blocks to creating dishes which make mealtimes memorable. They believe that, when it comes to choosing a bouillon, getting the right format for your needs is fundamental. Their range includes Powders, Jellies, Cubes and Pastes – which are also available in a Rich and Roast formats for an even stronger flavour. But how you use each of these formats will depend on a number of factors. If you’re not sure which bouillon is right for your menu, then why not try Knorr® Professional’s new online matching tool. By answering just a few simple questions, the tool will help you discover the right bouillon for you in less than a minute.

Visit to find out more

*Aggregated UK wholesaler value sales 52 w/e 21st August 2020



Laundry is Critical as Covid-19 Survives on Healthcare Uniforms for Up To 3 Days As reported below, scientists at the De Montford University have been conducting an in-depth study of viruses with similar structures and survival patterns to Covid-19. The research was led by a team of microbiologist and virologist experts who monitored the stability of virus traces over 72 hours and evaluated different infection control methods. The results strongly reinforce the need for all healthcare workers’ uniforms to be washed on-site and using appropriate commercial or industrial washing machines. The University discovered that the virus can survive on polyester for 72 hours, on cotton for 24 hour and on poly-cotton for 6 hours. The scientists contaminated various textiles with virus traces and analysed different wash methods, using varying temperatures with both domestic and commercial/ industrial laundry machines. The results demonstrated that domestic machines did not fully remove the virus from contaminated textiles and that the water dilution and agitation was insufficient as a means of infection control. Their findings concluded that it necessitated detergent and a temperature of at least 67C for the virus to be efficiently killed. Encouragingly, the research showed that the virus did not transmit to other items within the wash load. However, traces can transfer from uniforms to other surfaces and consequently it is crucial that uniforms do not leave the healthcare environment

and are processed in laundry machines that will reach the requisite high temperatures to ensure that there is no onward transmission. Dr Laird, Microbiologist and Head of Infectious Disease Research Group, is quoted on the University’s website as saying, Our findings show that three of the most commonly used textiles in healthcare pose a risk of transmission of the virus. If nurses and healthcare workers take their uniforms home, they could be leaving traces of virus on other surfaces. Forbes Professional provides healthcare compliant commercial laundry equipment to the NHS, care homes and private hospitals across the UK. As proud partners of Miele, we offer premium laundry solutions that adhere to WRAS and CQC guidelines whilst enabling both sluice and thermal disinfection. Our commercial washers hold validated temperatures of 71°C for 3 minutes and 83°C for 15 minutes, killing viruses and bacteria in adherence with the most stringent hygiene requirements. With our Complete Care solution, all laundry equipment is supported by our multi award-winning service support, with no repair or replacement bills for the life of the contract. Forbes Professional Telephone 0345 070 2335

Infection Control and Laundry Cash’s Labels- “The Name Study Published Behind the Name” In a study looking at how coronavirus behaves on three fabrics commonly used in the healthcare industry, scientists at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) have warned tthat traces can remain infectious for up to three days. Led by microbiologist Dr Katie Laird, virologist Dr Maitreyi Shivkumar and postdoctoral researcher Dr Lucy Owen, the research involved adding droplets of a model coronavirus called HCoV-OC43 – which has a very similar structure and survival pattern to that of SARS-CoV-2, which causes Covid-19 – to polyester, polycotton and 100% cotton. The results showed that polyester poses the highest risk for transmission of the virus, with infectious virus still present after three days that could transfer to other surfaces. On 100% cotton, the virus lasted for 24 hours, while on polycotton, the virus only survived for six hours. “When the pandemic first started, there was very little understanding of how long coronavirus could survive on textiles,” said Dr Katie Laird, Head of the Infectious Disease Research Group at DMU. “Our findings show that three of the most commonly used textiles in healthcare pose a risk for transmission of the virus. If nurses and healthcare workers take their uniforms home, they could be leaving traces of the virus on other surfaces.” In response, she advised the government that all healthcare uniforms should be laundered in hospitals to commercial standards or by an industrial laundry. She has since co-published an updated, fully comprehensive literature review which evaluates the risk of textiles in the transmission of disease, highlighting the need to for infection control procedures when handling contaminated healthcare textiles. “After the literature review, the next stage of our work was to evaluate the infection control risk of washing healthcare uniforms contaminated with coronavirus,” she continued. “Once we had determined the survival rate of coronavirus on each of the textiles, we turned our attention to identifying the most reliable wash method for removing the virus.” Using 100% cotton, the most commonly used healthcare textile, the scientists conducted a number of tests using different water temperatures and wash methods, including domestic washing machines, industrial washing machines, on-premise hospital washing machines, and an ozone (a highly reactive gas) wash system. The results showed that the agitation and dilution effect of the water in all of the washing machines tested was enough to remove the virus. However, when the team soiled the textiles with an artificial saliva containing the virus (to mimic the risk of spread from an infected person’s mouth), they found that domestic washing machines did not fully remove the virus and some traces survived. It was only when they added a detergent and increased the water temperature that the virus was completely eliminated. Investigating the tolerance of the virus to heat alone, findings showed that coronavirus was stable in water up to 60°C, but was inactivated at 67°C.

Next, the team looked at the risk of cross contamination, placing clean items of clothing in the same wash as those with traces of the virus. They found all wash systems removed the virus and there was no risk of the other items being contaminated. Dr Laird explained: “While we can see from the research that washing these materials at a high temperature, even in a domestic washing machine, does remove the virus, it does not eliminate the risk of the contaminated clothing leaving traces of coronavirus on other surfaces in the home or car before they are washed. “We now know that the virus can survive for up to 72 hours on some textiles and that it can transfer to other surfaces too. “This research has reinforced my recommendation that all healthcare uniforms should be washed on site at hospitals or at an industrial laundry. These wash methods are regulated and nurses and healthcare workers do not have to worry about potentially taking the virus home.”

With the support of the UK Textiles Trade Association, Dr Laird, Dr Shivkumar and Dr Owen have since shared their findings with industry experts across the UK, USA and Europe. “The response has been very positive,” said Dr Laird. “Textile and laundry associations around the world are now implementing our key messages in their guidance for healthcare laundering, to prevent further transmission of coronavirus.” David Stevens, CEO of Textiles Services Association UK, the trade association for the textile care services industry, said: “Going into a pandemic situation, we had the basic understanding that textiles were not among the top transmission media for coronaviruses. “However, we really had a lack of information about the stability of these viruses in different fabric types and in different wash programmes. This resulted in several misinformation floating around and excessive recommendations for washing. “We have considered in detail the methodologies and research practices used by Dr Laird and her team and find this research to be reliable, repeatable and reproducible. The conclusion of this work completed by DMU reinforces the vital role of contamination controls – whether it is domestic or industrial settings.” To further the research, the team is also working on a project in collaboration with DMU’s Psychology team and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, surveying nurses and healthcare workers about their knowledge and attitudes towards washing their uniforms during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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

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



Omnicell's eMAR Solution Helping Care Homes to Manage Their COVID-19 Vaccination Programmes As the COVID-19 vaccination programme is being rolled out across the UK, Omnicell’s eMAR solution has recently been enhanced to help support care homes to manage recording of the medication in terms of timings, dosage as well as the type of vaccination used. As with any other medication, this vaccine needs to be managed and administered safely. New features to the eMAR care home solution have been introduced to ensure that staff can easily record the type of vaccine, when it was administered and whether it was the first or second injection. As with all medication, residents have the right to refuse and should that be the case, the Omnicell eMAR solution also captures this information too. The Omnicell eMAR system automates the entire medication management and administration process for each care home resident, ensuring they receive their right medication at the right time. Now, care home management and staff can have the COVID-19 vaccine status of each resident at the touch of their fingertips as part of the eMAR Reporting Suite. The eMAR system gathers information, provides prompts and accurate instructions for staff and managers in real time at the touch of a button. Each individual medication is identified through a barcode, normally applied in pharmacy, which can then be tracked at all stages from check in at the care home through to administration to a resident. It provides an invaluable medicines history for each patient and includes a simple alert and verification system to minimise the risk of medication errors in the home. Residents in care homes take an average of 7.2 medicines per day. With each additional medicine comes an increased risk of errors in prescription, monitoring, dispensing or administration, adverse drug reactions, impaired medicines adherence which can lead to compromised quality of life for

patients. CQC’s annual state of care report found that safety was the biggest concern with one of the main contributing factors being poor medicines management.1 Recently, Omnicell UK, the market leader in medication and supplies automation, and Nourish Care, a leading electronic care planning provider, came together to provide a new integration that gives care staff greater visibility of a patient’s medication regime as part of their overall care plan. Managing and monitoring resident’s medication regimes effectively can significantly impact the delivery and quality of care. Historically care plan-

ning and medication administration systems have been managed completely separately. This can potentially contribute to failings in support of residents’ care. The new integration means that Omnicell eMAR can now share data related to medication with the Nourish Care system, giving greater insight and driving best practice into the safety and individual care of each resident in the home. Heather Bethune, Care Home Manager at Abbeyfield House Care Home, comments; "The new COVID-19 recording feature has been a huge help for our care home. All of the vaccine information is recorded in one place and it's presented alongside all the medication that we've administered - where it should be, so it's great to have a simple overview of everything that’s medication related. We can record the type of vaccine that resident has been given and the date they were administered it, this allows us to know when the second vaccination is required for each resident. The system allows you to input information retrospectively which is a great help when we have new residents join the home who have already had the vaccine. It's a really simple and easy to use system that is helping us to manage the COVID-19 virus.” Cyrus Hodivala, Medicines Adherence Sales Director at Omnicell UK & Ireland, comments; “Here at Omnicell we are constantly looking at new ways to respond to our clients needs with innovative solutions. And as such, we are pleased to announce the new features and enhancements to our eMAR solution which will help support care homes to manage their COVID-19 vaccination programmes. We anticipate that this will help to drive much needed times efficiencies for staff during this difficult time, as well as ensure patient safety within the care sector.” For further information contact

ATLAS eMAR - The Only Proven eMar for Care Homes in the UK ATLAS eMAR is the only independently evaluated medication administration system that has been shown to eradicate 21 out of 23 medication error types, save 65 staff hours per month on medication, representing over £1500 savings per month and improve accountability by reducing missing entries by 85%. There are four unique features of ATLAS eMAR: 1. Use of barcode validation to ensure all the rights of medicine administration are checked. This feature eradicates most common medication errors. 2. Automatic two-way link between the pharmacy and care home. This ensures that the pharmacy is aware of therapy changes made at the home and can sort out discrepancies with prescriptions before they become errors. The pharmacy can also see all prescription requests and the actual stock counts of each medicine at the care home. This leads to efficiencies in ordering, booking in and returning of medicines.

3. The data from ATLAS eMAR on medication administrations can now be viewed on most e-care planning platforms through our open API. This means that all aspects of resident care including medications can now be viewed in one place. 4. ATLAS eMAR can now be used on any suitable android device. This means that if you already have an android device for e-care plans, then you can run ATLAS eMAR on it, making it a very cost effective option. ATLAS eMAR has a national network of enabled pharmacies and can work with any pharmacy, as long as they agree to support the care home with the technology. The implementation is detailed and fully supported. Training is via on-line elearning and webinars. Over 95% of care homes who implemented ATLAS eMAR indicated that they would never go back to their traditional medication system. Visit or see the advert on page 44 for further details.


Well Pharmacy Partners with PainChek to Promote Person-Centred Care Well Pharmacy, the UK’s largest independent pharmacy chain, is pleased to announce a partnership with PainChek®, the world’s first AI-powered pain assessment tool to help people who are unable to verbalise if they have pain, such as those living with dementia. Sadly, pain often goes un-detected and under-treated in people with communication difficulties from medical conditions. The Well Care Home Services Team are actively signposting more than 350 care homes across the UK to use PainChek® as an effective solution to help measure pain in residents and promote the highest standards of care in residential homes. This secure medical device is simple and straightforward to use via mobile or tablet. It uses artificial intelligence (facial detection and analysis technology) and smart automation to detect and score pain in real time allowing informed clinical decisions around appropriate and effective pain management to be made. This partnership further highlights how Well Pharmacy are committed to offering a local community service with a real focus on person-centred care, quality and safety. Tandeep Gill, Care Home Business Lead at Well Pharmacy said: “Well Pharmacy is delighted to partner with PainChek®. At Well we strive to offer an outstanding local service to care homes and their residents. PainChek® uses innovative technology to help residents who are not able to communicate for themselves to identify

the presence of pain. “We’re delighted that through this partnership we are able to pass on an exclusive discount to benefit our care homes customers across the UK, so they can help improve the quality of life for their residents and offer person-centred care.” Pete Shergill, PainChek® UK&I Country Director said: “About half of people living with dementia suffer from pain, but they are often unable to verbalise they have pain, and sadly, it goes unmanaged and untreated. “Ensuring residents’ pain is assessed effectively is critical for care home operators, healthcare professionals and carers but it can be challenging. Therefore, we are really pleased that Well Pharmacy is partnering with us to promote and deliver a quick and easy-to-use solution that will allow carers and healthcare professionals to measure pain in residents, document checks and make informed clinical decisions for effective pain management. “By harnessing the power of medtech, care providers can deliver more efficient and effective care, streamline processes, and ultimately cut costs and save time – allowing staff to focus on delivering the highest standard of care.” For more information, about Well Pharmacy’s Care Home Service please visit For more information about PainChek® email: or visit:


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES Antimicrobial Contract Fabrics Adaptawear Iona Nightie: Full Opening-Back Nightie for Added Reassurance Skopos has recently launched a new sub-brand, Skopos Pro-tect Plus, as a marker for all Skopos products offered with an antimicrobial finish. Skopos has been offering antimicrobial fabrics for over 15 years, however the new sub-brand helps to clearly identify this offer to our customers, at a time where extra reassurance within contract interiors has never been more relevant. Within Pro-tect Plus Skopos customers have a choice of fabrics for different end uses; Antimicrobial drapery fabrics, Antimicrobial woven upholstery fabrics, Antimicrobial faux leather and vinyls. The upholstery fabrics offer includes luxury velvet, printed fabrics,

vinyls and a large range of woven collections, mostly waterproof, soil and stain resist, perfect for caring interiors. Many of our drapery and bedding fabrics can be finished with an antimicrobial treatment, so please ask. Choices include print base-cloths, plain and woven designs. All Skopos fabrics are flame retardant and tested to the high standards required for contract interiors. Skopos antimicrobial fabrics have bacteriostatic, viralreducing and anti-fungal properties. Free samples of our fabrics are available online or via our customer services team:

CareZips Dignity Trousers ™

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

are available in 7 sizes for perfect fit. CareZips™ are soft and wrinkle resistant with stretch and give for extra comfort. Practical, durable, washable and noniron, the CareZips™ trousers are the perfect choice for daily use. Contact Win Health Medical Ltd - 01835 864866

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.

Write Your Life Story! With Reminiscence Journal Game Imagine you’re playing a board game with your family and carers as you write the story of your life. You can do this Our mission is to help the silver seniors to become more creative in the using use of their imagination. To help them stay focused with their memory activity. To help them interact and avoid the feeling of loneliness and aloneness. To Help the seniors Preserve their stories through Print, video and Online publishing, keep record of their oral history with legacy building for future generations. To continue in making the life of the silver seniors relevant to the society. To help in bring out the hidden skills the Silver seniors may never know or recognize they possess. The Pack includes a 120 paged journal, 40 cardboard game, a timer, two reusable maze games including a water marker. Playing the 40 cards prompts seniors to write in their life journal. includes:, Moviefy 360 Website, 20 pictures flipbook photo album, 10 minute video, Life story flipbook with 4 paged Quiz. Visit or Email: Call Jean On +44 791 630 6888 today

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

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

Care Homes Pilot Diagnostic Telemedicine Developed by GPs video consultation platform allows clinicians and their patients to communicate easily, discuss test results and agree next steps. The Hub reduces the need for clinicians to visit care homes and the need for residents to visit healthcare settings. In addition to improving patient safety, associated costs such as PPE and travel time and mileage are minimised. Trudy Harrison MP, Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Prime Minister and MP for Copeland (including Millom), said: “I’m delighted that some care home residents in my constituency will be among the first to benefit from remote diagnostics consultations with their GPs. Tools such as Teki-Hub have the potential not only to reduce infection risk during a pandemic Pathfinders Specialist and Complex Care centre for but also to help deliver care to more patients more physical health needs in Nottinghamshire and quickly and it’s great to see more organisations triKirksanton Care Home in Millom, Cumbria, are the lat- alling these new innovations.” est care homes to trial an innovative telemedicine unit To date Teki-Hub has been used to conduct which allows GPs to complete detailed assessments approximately 180 remote consultations. Initial evaluaon patients remotely – saving time and improving tion by NHS Arden & GEM CSU shows clinicians have patient safety during the coronavirus pandemic. been very satisfied with the quality of the audio and The Teki-Hub telemedicine solution, developed by images, and ease of system use, with an average satpioneering GPs Dr Stephen Katebe and Dr Omobolaji isfaction score of 4.7 out of 5. Over 90% of patients Iji, is already providing a solution to the additional risks who have responded to a post-consultation survey of in-person consultations during the COVID-19 panrated the overall treatment experience as excellent. demic in 18 care homes in England and Scotland,. Initial trials also indicate that use of Teki-Hub can Unlike standard video consultations, the Teki-Hub reduce the need for ambulance callouts and emerunit includes high quality diagnostic equipment, gency hospital admissions. enabling GPs and other clinicians to undertake virtual Dr Stephen Katebe, co-founder of Tekihealth care home rounds, and respond to emergencies Solutions, said: “As GPs ourselves, we fully understand quickly, safely and efficiently. Teki-Hub can use WiFi, the barriers to providing swift and comprehensive care mobile or satellite networks to connect reliably to GP to care home residents – particularly during COVID-19. practices, community services or hospitals, with care With Teki-Hub installed, clinicians can see up to six home staff administering tests as directed by the clini- patients an hour, with no lost time spent travelling, cian. and without the additional risks currently associated The equipment includes a no-touch infrared basal with in-person consultations. We’ve seen a significant thermometer, and set of digital stethoscope, otoscope increase in demand for pilots as NHS organisations and tongue depressor attachments, allowing GPs to look to enhance the quality and safety of care, particconduct thorough assessments of a patient’s respiraularly during the pandemic.” tory, ear nose and throat, and heart health. The in-built Visit or @tekihealth

Why Specify a Yeoman Shield Fire Rated Door Edge Protector? When specifying for a structure, it’s important to be aware of the level of wear and tear a door can be exposed to in a public building. Door edges, in particular, can be easily damaged or worn down by regular use – which can then render them non-compliant for fire safety regulations. To ensure that a project remains compliant, an architect can specify durable door edge protectors to add durability and longevity to doors. Not only will specifying edge protectors increase the longevity of doors, they will enhance the cost efficiency of a project by reducing maintenance demands and the possibility of having to replace unsafe fire doors. Yeoman Shield fire rated Door Edge Protectors are unique with a 2.0 mm Vinylac outer and a specially formulated 9mm PVCu reinforced core. They are FD30 (1/2 hour) and FD60 (1 hour) rated

with intumescent seals that are in accordance to the fire door’s specification. Fire rated Door Edge Protectors are suitable for commercial applications such as residential blocks, schools and hospitals etc. Door Edge Protectors can also be specified with different fire seals, from a plain intumescent fire seal to a brush, fire and smoke variant. Of course, for doors that are non-fire rated in an architect’s project Yeoman Shield also provide quality edge protectors without seals to enhance durability and reduce wear. Source a full range of door protection panels and kick plates from a single supplier by choosing Yeoman Shield. Our door protection panels and kick plates offer the same lasting durability and quality as our door edge protectors. Visit for details.



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.


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".


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 or call 03333 444 562.

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

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

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

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

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


TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Imagine a Piece of Equipment for Your Care Home CARE VISION That Can Enhance the Experience of Your Residents Mentally, Physically and Also Emotionally Inspired Inspirations have been working directly with care homes in developing their interactive touch screen activity tables over the last few years, to provide a range of screen sizes and units to suit every care setting. Just think of a giant Android tablet built into a solid oak surround, on a base that houses a large battery to allow you to use it all day long and smooth running wheels for easy movement between rooms in your care home. "This amazing bit of technology is making a huge difference to our residents" Melanie Dawson Manager, The Lawns at Heritage Manor ' The screen is 5mm tempered glass for your residents safety and sealed against fluid ingress meaning a spill of a cup of tea won't ruin your equipment. It also means an easy clean solution to stop cross contamination using any normal surface cleaner.

How to enhance your residents experience Mentally - Brain training apps, memory apps, quizzes, board games, reasoning challenges.

Physically - Exercise for the elderly online classes, hand eye coordination, increased movement to move hands around a large screen. Emotionally- Reminiscence tours on Google Earth, past and present clips on YouTube of hobbies or interests, religious services and Group ZOOM calls to loved ones who cant get to visit in your residents person! "We use it daily and would not be without it now, even the residents find it easy and fun to use. Thank you!" Sandie Evans, Registered Manager, Oakland's Care Home, Crickhowell All tables are made to order, if you'd like to enquire on a price guide and time scales for deliveries, just visit their website or scan the QR code on the right. "We've noticed that quieter residents who didn't interact too much with others have suddenly been more active and more vocal." Lindsey Davies, Home Manager,Cwrt Enfys See the advert on page 10.

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

live, up-to-date essential information. Located in Tavistock, Devon our expert team is comprised of numerous industry specialists with many years of direct, hands-on care experience. This is one of our key USP’s. Our Managing Director, Matt Luckham started the creation of the original Care Control Software in 2010 with the aim to provide essential, accurate information for Spring House Care House in Devon. Matt had purchased Spring House in 2010. Matt developed the software and then spent 6 years proving its functional-

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

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

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

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


NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION Lotus Care Technology The New MPCSA11 from Medpage The NurseAlert pressure mat has been one of the most successful floor pressure mats due to it being non slip and carpeted which makes it feel very natural under a residents foot. Lotus Care Technology Ltd have many other fall saving devices that can give you peace of mind whilst caring for this at risk of falls.  Having many years of experience in

fitting and maintaining Nurse Call Systems helps the guys at Lotus Care Technology understand that every home is different and has different needs. They can specify not only the best system for the environmental factors in the home but also take into consideration the best products that will make your carers and nurses jobs that little bit easier. Visit for details.

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 Or see the advert on page 2.

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

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

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

Wireless door/window exit alerts

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

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



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

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

Nurse Call from Edison Telecom We here at Edison Telecom Ltd have been providing specialist solutions to your call system requirements tailor-made to each customers needs for over 25 years, says director Bob Johnson. Is your current Nurse Call “legacy”, obsolete, so full of software bugs or commercially not viable for your current supplier/maintainer to maintain? We may have just the part and

expertise that you are looking for to give your nurse call a further extension to life, adds Bob, “Edison will treat your nurse call with the same compassion that you give to those in your care. There will come a time when your equipment is beyond repair but Edison are experts in extending the life of obsolete systems.”




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

Call us on 01252-330220 We can give most systems a new lease of life and maintain them into the future. Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.


TRAINING & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES What the Pandemic Has Taught Us About Skills, Knowledge, and Skills Gaps in Health and Social Care Confidence Delivered Online By Nicole Bewley, Learning Curve Group ( It has been highlighted in recent years that the skills gaps within health and social care are set to be at an all time high with increasing numbers of vacancies across the sector. Nicole Bewley, Director of Skills at one of the largest providers of health and social care training, Learning Curve Group, explores the true impact that Covid-19 has had on the sector and ways that employers can adapt. I don’t think anyone can argue that the work of those across the health and social care sector has never been more appreciated. As Covid-19 has devastated care staff in many ways, it has also increased solidarity as our care workers across the country faced the crisis head on. For many years, health and social care has been tarnished as low skilled and low paid. Although care workers have not been afraid to show the harsh realities of Covid, with long shifts wearing PPE and losing patients and residents who haven’t seen their families in months, clapping for carers and praise for key workers has arguably glamorised the sector. University applications to study nursing were reported to be at a record high in February, increasing by almost a third. The work that carers have been doing for centuries has been under the microscope for all to see, and whilst the sector is incredibly rewarding, I think it would be wrong to suggest that it isn’t equally hard, both physically and mentally.

The Government launched a recruitment campaign to encourage people to re-skill and join the health and social care sector. Many sectors have been particularly hard hit from the pandemic; hospitality, aviation, travel and tourism, and it’s likely that they’ll take significantly longer to recover as we work through the easing of restrictions. With an aging workforce, and skills gaps left by brexit, if we don’t act now to fill vacancies, the sector is really going to struggle in the next few years. As vacancies are left unfilled and we see an increasing strain on services as people are living longer, Skills for Care have estimated a need for 650,000 to 950,000 new adult social care jobs by 2035. Employers across the sector need to look at how they are going to bridge the gap, and upskilling and reskilling is going to be key. Supporting individuals to transition into the sector would support the recruitment drive, however, a holistic approach to their training to ensure they have the right skills and knowledge for the job is vitally important. The government has announced a range of incentives for employers looking to support their staff with high quality training, and the Lifetime Skills Guarantee could be a lifeline for care providers looking for free training. Aimed at levelling up adults without an existing level three qualification, the Lifetime Skills Guarantee initiative from the government offers funding for a range of health and social care courses to individuals looking to progress their knowledge over and above the already free Level 2 qualifications. This is extremely welcome news from the government, as it means that employers in the care sector can really focus on upskilling any staff who aren’t already qualified to level three, and also recruit new members of staff who might not have any care experience, but want to get into the sector, narrowing skills gaps and providing better overall care. See the advert on the facing page for details.

With COVID-19 restrictions gradually easing and staff/employers looking ahead to a safer and more normal future, the Laser Learning team are proud to have supported both the large numbers of furloughed staff, as well as those in Care Homes and the NHS, who bravely worked on the frontline during the lockdown. Through the Laser Care Certificate course and Skills For Care endorsed CPD short courses, we are continuing to deliver skills, knowledge, and confidence online, to the sector which was undoubtedly affected the most during this pandemic. The Laser Care Certificate course provides knowledge to cover every standard included in the official Skills for Care specification. Every lesson includes bespoke video tutorials specifically for the Care Certificate course, as well as reading materials and good practice examples. Furthermore, a mandatory quiz at the end of each lesson (which requires a 100% pass mark) ensures both competence and confidence. Managers are able to create their own accounts to enrol staff on the course

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

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

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



Thinking of Hiring Senior Carers or Nurses from Outside the UK?

By Kashif Majeed, Director at Aston Brooke Solicitors (

The New Immigration Points-Based System introduced on the 1st January 2021 treats EU and non-EU citizens equally and transforms the way in which employers recruit from outside the UK. Free movement has ended, and the new points-based immigration system has salary and language requirements that change the way you recruit from outside the UK. The recent Government U-turn to place senior carers on the shortage occupation list has meant there has been an increase in recruitment for that role within the care sector. The main reason for this is that the majority of overseas candidates are staff nurses within hospitals across Europe, Asia and Africa and have extensive work experience with a good standard of English. The pay rate set by the Home Office for senior carers is £10.10 per hour for a 39-hour week, which equates to an annual salary of £20,482. This means

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

that care providers are able to recruit high calibre nurses as senior carers. Moreover, the majority of overseas senior carers will have ambitions to complete their CBT and IELTS when they arrive in the UK and then the OSCE to become NMC pinned nurses. However, you can only benefit from this change in the rules if you hold a Skilled Worker sponsor licence. Given the significance of the changes from 1 January 2021, Aston Brooke has found that there has been an exponential increase in sponsor licence applications. Care providers must be proactive and take swift action to apply for a sponsor licence as soon as possible. In order to apply for a sponsor licence you have to satisfy the following criteria: • You must be a genuine business operating legally in the UK • You must be able to offer employment skilled to at

least RQF Level 3 (A level) • You must be able to meet your immigration compliance responsibilities • You must complete an online application form with supporting evidence You must also submit mandatory documents with your licence application. In the care sector, the documents include company bank statements, office lease, PAYE reference numbers, employer’s liability insurance certificate, CQC certificate and certificate of incorporation for the company. The processing times can vary but during the current pandemic, the Home Office have introduced a priority service for sponsor licence applications and Aston Brooke have been able to receive licences within as little as five days. Many care providers already hold a sponsor licence and have been able to take advantage of the recent changes in the rules to recruit senior carers. However, it is crucial that existing sponsors review their corporate structures to determine whether individual licences are more beneficial as opposed to just one single licence. If your business does not currently hold a sponsor licence then we strongly recommend that you act now and apply for a licence. The sponsor licence is valid for four years and will prove to be an invaluable asset for your recruitment needs. This is particularly relevant, as non-resident EU nationals who are entering the UK for the first time from the beginning of January 2021 will need sponsorship in order to work in the UK. For any further queries or to make an application for a sponsor licence, please contact Mr Kashif Majeed on See the advert on page 17 for details.

Giving Learning and Development the ‘Tomorrow’s World’ Treatment Jane Brightman, social care lead at the Institute of Health and Social Care Management gives some practical advice to help modernise approaches to learning and development. Hands up if you remember the BBC programme Tomorrow’s World? Back in the sixties and seventies it was accurately predicting that we’d all have home computers, mobiles phones and the information superhighway. In one episode in 1989, they told us that in 2020 we would have smart homes. Impressive to be predicting this pace of advancement 30-60 years before it happened. It leads me to think – what could happen if we gave the ‘Tomorrow’s World’ treatment to social care; in particular to learning and development in the sector? It’s an area we have allowed to become stale and outdated whilst the world that has changed so much. I’m really talking about all learning and development for everyone working in social care, but for the purpose of this article, let’s narrow that focus down to leadership and management. Firstly, we should ask why leadership and management development is seen as something important for those in charge only? Everyone, at every level of an organisation, should be supported to be a leader. If we only ever provide management development when people become managers, how on earth can we identify potential and expect people to be able to do a great job from the off? If we really examine the current offering for our social care leaders and managers, it is fairly limited. We also know that many managers struggle to find the time (and sometimes budget) to undertake training and development for themselves. They often feel responsible for ensuring the boxes are ticked for their staff to be trained, leaving little room for their own personal development. I’d go even further and say that many programmes available, for example qualifica-

tions and apprenticeships, are no longer fit for purpose, both being around five years old now. There are big gaps in content – digital and technological skills, entrepreneurial knowledge, confidence to support workforce wellbeing and a better understanding of green and sustainability issues to name a few. Training programmes can also fail to support innovation, creativity, collaboration, and often don’t look outside of the sector or explore the future. It’s time to remedy this and to demand more from learning for our social care leaders and managers, at all levels. And there are actions we can take in social care now: Spend time reviewing your current programme of leadership and management development, be brutally honest, what impact is it really having? Have conversations internally and externally. Talk to other care providers or leaders. Listen to staff teams, the people using your services and their loved ones. Find out what people want from learning and development in 2021 and beyond. Seek out learning opportunities that are different. Talk to training providers, colleges and universities but widen that field too, learning can be found in many places such as webinars, conferences, blogs and podcasts. Identify the things that people need to learn and then search for the solutions. For example, reverse mentoring, where someone in a junior role mentors a colleague more senior to them. This works really well for topics such as using technology or social media. Remember that often the best learning comes when things go wrong. Learning from mistakes (events, incidents, or failures) is incredibly powerful. Consider future skills and development needs. The past year has taught us to be prepared for the unexpected and unprecedented. It’s time to gaze into the future of social care. What do you want it to look like? Resolve to stop repeating training. It’s expensive, time consuming, frustrating and has no impact on practice or confidence. Look for different ways to reinforce or build on learning. Let’s apply the ‘Tomorrow’s World’ lens to social care learning and development and grow our ambition for the sector, its workforce, and the people we support.

Workshops & Webinars: Empowering Social Care with the Tools To Be Outstanding Meaningful Care Matters is 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’. Currently, care providers can make use of the group’s range educational and innovative online tools, including:

• Finding ways of balancing infection control and quality of life • Enhancing individual problem solving and communication skills in a safe environment What does the course involve? • Six 60-minute zoom sessions over a six-week period with teams of 8 to 10 participants • Specific resources and tools from Meaningful Care Matters to support learning and outcomes • Wellness and mindfulness support with tools from The Coach Approach


These webinar sessions offer support materials on 5 key topics unique to each home The weekly group support sessions can accommodate teams of up to ten. A facilitator will oversee the live discussion, exploring the impacts COVID-19 and other lifestyle factors that can result in decreased resilience and compassion fatigue. Based on 5 sessions over 5 weeks, the forums cover ideas, strategies, and support mechanisms for how to achieve a meaningful connection. The group sessions are split into two parts: 1. Connections Matter A 40-minute session where five key challenges unique to each home are reviewed, before looking at how they have impacted the team and how members can make positive changes to improve their well-being. 2. A Practical Approach A 20-minute session where practical implications are explored before looking at how to support the learnings from the aspect of the live webinar. For more information on these online training sessions and other services Meaningful Care Matters provides, please visit

This online workshop will focus on the compassion fatigue that has become prevalent with frontline teams in this COVID pandemic. The course is all about person centredness and coming back to the heart and soul of what care culture is about. Achieved through an action learning process, participants can: • Reflect - consider the feelings and emotions as well as the practical implications of operating in a person-centred way • Recharge - look at strategies that will energise and maintain mindfulness and well-being to help support individuals and teams • Regenerate – refresh the passion, vision, and structure of a personcentred approach in a tangible, practical and meaningful way Key outcomes include • Renewing the care team by bringing members together and having space to reflect on the emotional impact of working in the climate of COVID-19 • Building an emotionally intelligent and self-aware leadership team that has the confidence and clarity it needs to support person-centred approaches in challenging times • Establishing resilient and reflective care teams


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