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

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

The Carer Digital

THECARERUK

THECARERUK

Issue 51

Care Leaders “Demand” Reform in Queen's Speech

Care leaders, MPs and Peers have sent a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson calling on him to include social care reform in the Queen’s Speech this May because they say ‘the sector is on its knees’. The letter calls for a 1948 moment for adult social care to establish a long-term and sustainable future that will be to the benefit of all citizens and the economy. Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “Many citizens have been so heartened to hear the Prime Minister’s commitment to reform and it is very important that it features in the Queen’s Speech. The sector stands ready and willing to support the delivery of this much needed reform agenda”. The letter, signed by over 26 co-signatories was delivered to the Prime Minister yesterday (April 27), emphasising that social care has been on the front

line of the COVID-19 pandemic with a tragic number of deaths in care homes, over 30,000, and staff, nearly 900. The adult social care workforce has demonstrated tremendous commitment and resilience during this time; however, the sector is on its knees, and is in desperate need of reform in order that it can craft a long-term future, that will protect citizens, reduce the burdens on the NHS and establish good careers in social care. Martin Green added “As we come out of the pandemic, if we can develop a clear funding strategy for social care, we can also develop a range of careers that will provide high quality care and support local economic development”.

(CONTINUED ON PAGE 3...)


PAGE 2 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

EDITOR'S VIEWPOINT Welcome to the latest edition of The Carer Digital! Just a mere 10 years before I was born there was a very historic moment - one that has shaped the country’s destiny in many ways ever since. 5th July 1948 saw a culmination of a bold and pioneering plan to make healthcare no longer exclusive to those who could afford it, but to make it accessible to everyone. The National Health Service, abbreviated to NHS was born. The NHS was launched by the then Minister of Health in Clement Attlee’s post-war government, Aneurin Bevan, at the Park Hospital in Manchester. Furthermore, the creation of the NHS in 1948 did not happen overnight, but was the product of years of hard work and a motivation from various figures of that time who felt the current healthcare system was insufficient and needed to be revolutionised. The “seed” was planted long before 1948 and, I understand dates back to the early 1900s with a Minority Report of the Royal Commission on the Poor Law in 1909, which argued that a new system was needed to replace the archaic ideas of the Poor Law which was still in existence from the times of the workhouses in the Victorian era. Publication of the report led to more and more people speaking out and becoming proactive, including one physician Dr Benjamin Moore who had great foresight and a innovative vision of the future in healthcare. His ideas were written in “The Dawn of the Health Age” and he was possibly one of the first to use the phrase ‘National Health Service’. His ideas led him to create the State Medical Service Association which held its first meeting in 1912, however it was another 36 years before the creation of the NHS. Our lead story on the front cover calls for another “1948 moment”. Seventy-three years after the NHS was born the country now looks to the government of the day create a similar long term and sustainable solution for social care. A letter with 26 signatories sent to the Prime Minister this week states: “Successive governments have promised social care reform but have not delivered and now the situation is desperate. “Social care needs its 1948 moment to establish a long-term and sustainable future, that will be to the benefit of all citizens and the economy.” The sector they highlight is “on its knees” and “in desperate need of reform” after more than a year on the front line of the crisis, arguing that the current system leaves “many families struggling to survive” when one member needs social care, with thousands of people every year facing losing their home and family assets to fund care. The signatories include care leaders, MPs and Peers who are calling on the Prime Minister to set out his reforms in the Queen’s Speech, which is due to be held on May 11. Earlier this year the Prime Minister made a pledge, when he appeared before the House of Commons Liaison Committee on 13 January, and said: “The pandemic has highlighted the difficulties that the social care sector is in - it clearly needs reform, and it

Editor

Peter Adams

needs improvement. We will be bringing forward plans later this year' There really can be no evading this giant elephant in the room. The adult social care sector needs planned and strategic long-term reform. A “baton” which seems to get passed from one successive government to another, as happens in a relay race. The Prime Minister acknowledged this himself in January when he said: “This has been shirked by governments for 30 years. Because we have the majority that we need, we’re going to get on and deal with this so people get the care that they need in their old age but don’t have to sell their home to pay for their care.” The sector has been right at the coalface of the pandemic. A report has highlighted that 75% of care staff’s mental health has worsened during the pandemic, which may lead to a mass exodus of staff. (See page 19). The sector needs the government to demonstrate leadership and direction, and the Queen’s Speech is the moment to provide it!

LAST CHANCE! 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. A luxury hamper will be delivered directly to a “UNSUNG HERO” at their care home. While mainstream media sometimes, it would seem, “relishes” the opportunity to dwell on negative news surrounding care homes, we have always done the opposite! And it is an absolute travesty that these feelgood stories and initiatives never seem to make mainstream news. The nominations are still coming in, we are absolutely thrilled to say! However, the time to nominate is almost over! Nominations are open until April 30 so please email us at The Carer with a small paragraph of what your nominee has done and why you think they are worthy of recognition to nominate@thecareruk.com Once again we have called on some of the industry’s “leading lights” for insight, advice guidance and best practice, and are always delighted to print the many “uplifting stories” we receive from care homes and staff around the country so please do keep them coming! I can always be contacted at editor@thecareruk.com

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 3

Care Leaders “Demand” Reform in Queen's Speech (...CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) The full text of the letter reads: Dear Prime Minister, Social care has been on the front-line of the COVID19 pandemic and we have seen over 30,000 deaths of care homes residents and nearly 900 staff. The adult social care workforce has demonstrated tremendous commitment and resilience during this time; however, the sector is on its knees, and is in desperate need of reform in order that we can craft a long-term future, that will protect citizens, reduce the burdens on the NHS and establish good careers in social care. Successive governments have promised social care reform but have not delivered and now the situation is desperate. Social care needs its 1948 moment to establish a long-term and sustainable future, that will be to the benefit of all citizens and the economy. Social care is little understood but much needed and is usually accessed at a time of crisis without the information and support to make informed choices. We support the recent calls by the Health and Social Care Select Committee for an extra £7 billion per annum and

for a workforce strategy. These measures will help us to secure a long-term future for care, create new careers and build back stronger after the pandemic. Investing in our social care system both in terms of money and personnel is now essential. The current system leaves many families struggling to survive when one of the family members needs social care. Each year thousands of people face losing their home and all their family assets, and many older people who have a family member needing care, face the prospect of financial hardship in later life. According to Age UK, 1.6 million people aged 65 and over do not receive the care and support they need and this could grow to 2.1 million people by 2030. Similarly, there is also unmet demand for people with learning disabilities; ADASS reports that in the last four years there has been a 10% increase in the numbers of younger people who require social care. Over many years the Government has failed to heed the Low Pay Commission’s call for a national living wage, and because of the way in which some services are commissioned, it leaves thousands of people in our committed, skilled and dedicated workforce, facing the

Sleep Duration Associated with Dementia Risk Research led by teams in Paris and London have found that UK civil servants who regularly slept for six hours or less in middle age have a higher risk of dementia. The study was published in the journal Nature Communications.

sleep duration was largely measured through study volunteers self-reporting their sleep duration, and while this group of volunteers was not reflective of the UK population, it does offer insight into the relationship with sleep and dementia in mid to later life.

The researchers used information from the Whitehall II study, a long-term health study that recruited people working as civil servants in the 1980s.

and while it suggests that persistent lower sleep

Dr Sara Imarisio, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Research UK said:

longer than average sleep duration and dementia

“Many of us have experienced a bad night’s sleep and probably know that it can have an impact on our memory and thinking in the short term, but an intriguing question is whether long-term sleep patterns can affect our risk of dementia.

dementia, there are things within our control that

“We know that the diseases that cause dementia start up to two decades before symptoms like memory loss start to show, so midlife is a crucial time for research into risk factors. In this study,

“This study cannot tease apart cause and effect duration was linked with an increased risk of dementia, it did not find an association between risk. “While there is no sure-fire way to prevent can reduce our risk. The best evidence suggests that not smoking, only drinking in moderation, staying mentally and physically active, eating a balanced diet, and keeping cholesterol and blood pressure levels in check can all help to keep our brains healthy as we age.”

prospect of delivering essential services at below the minimum wage. As we come out of the pandemic, if we can develop a clear funding strategy for social care, we can also develop a range of careers that will provide high-quality care and support local economic development. Many citizens have been so heartened to hear your commitment to reform, we hope to see it in the Queen’s Speech and we stand ready to support you. Caroline Abrahams, Age UK's charity director, said: “Ministers must commit to firm action in the forthcoming Queen's Speech because this really is the last chance for the Prime Minister to follow through on his pledge to “fix the crisis in social care, once and for all,” and have something to show for it by the next General Election. “It is widely suggested that the Government’s preferred reform is a cap to protect people from sky high care bills. This could make a valuable difference to many older people and families who are terrified they will run out of money to pay for essential care." Age UK's charity director says even if a cap is set

at a generous level, a cap on its own "will not be enough to fulfil the Prime Minister's promise" and the Government "must also commit to improving the wages and prospects of care staff and to increasing care funding overall". “In their weakened state our care services were in no position to withstand the threat posed by COVID and many thousands of older people died before their time as a result. "Nothing will bring those people back but the least we can do now is to restore services to a level of decency and give the staff on whom social care depends a proper career structure and the terms and conditions they deserve.“ Lord Adebowale, chair of the NHS Confederation, has urged the government "to set out a clear timetable which details how reform of the sector can be delivered", saying this should be supported by "a long-term financial settlement". "A well-funded and good quality social care sector is vital to a healthy nation and a strong and well-performing NHS," he added.


PAGE 4 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

Why Regular Movement Holds the Key to Physical and Mental Wellbeing By Philippa Shirtcliffe, Head of Care Quality, QCS (www.qcs.co.uk) “Less exercise and more TV” is how some headline writers summarised University College London’s (UCL) survey on physical activity during the lockdown. UCL’s study, which included 70,000 people, found that 40 percent of them did less exercise in the last lockdown than in the first, while 19 percent said they watched more television. Another poll – this time conducted by the Youth Sport Trust – which was taken last year – found that 73 percent of teachers interviewed say that “children have returned (to school) with low levels of physical fitness. The care sector has been badly affected too. I’m unaware of any polls that have been conducted surveying exercise levels amongst care staff. However, anecdotally at least, I can say that many professional carers, that I have spoken to, say that long hours, which are often compounded by staff shortages or staff absences, give them little time to take a walk for enjoyment, go for a run or take a swim – hobbies that many of them took for granted before the pandemic.

THE IMPORTANT OF MOVEMENT But why bring up this subject now? Well, research published on the ‘On Your Feet Britain’ website, a national activity awareness day, which takes place this Thursday, extols both the benefits of “regular movement”. While most of us are already aware of the value of exercise, the ‘On Your Feet Britain’ campaign page also reminds us that physical activity is not only important for physical health but “increases concentration” and “improves motivation”. At QCS, the leading provider of content, guidance and standards for the social care sector, it’s something that my colleagues and me are all too aware of. Our senior leadership team openly encourages staff to make time for exercise and mindfulness. We use Microsoft Teams to run group yoga classes, we schedule ‘walking’ meetings and participate in exercise and wellbeing challenges. Last year we took part in the Kaido Challenge, which required team members to do a set amount of exercise each day for forty days. It helped to forge a wonderful sense of

comradeship within each team, not to mention improving group fitness.

EXERCISE FOR MENTAL WELLBEING Unfortunately, not every leadership team or every sector recognises the value of exercise as a vehicle for wellbeing, or has the luxury of doing so. Take the care sector, for example. It is currently experiencing a mental health crisis. According to the GMB Union, which includes 620,000 workers from a myriad of different sectors, 75 percent of professional carers have suffered “worsened mental health” as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. While we need to see greater investment in mental health services, wobble rooms and counselling, there is no doubt that exercise – both physical and mental - has a key role to play too. Exercise stimulates endorphins, which leave people feeling happier, more positive, and, most importantly, less stressed.

COURAGE AND LEADERSHIP NEEDED TO FOSTER A CULTURE OF EXERCISE But it takes strong leadership from Registered Managers to have the courage to insist that walking, running, swimming, cycling, yoga or mediation are built into the average working day. Implementing such a programme, however, is not as hard as it sounds. It is really about making movement an inherent part of the culture. It’s also about starting with small changes. So, for example, ask yourself, ‘does every video conferencing meeting need to be conducted while seated?’ If not, think how many of your Zoom meetings could be carried out while standing or even walking? If you enjoy a lunchtime walk, then why not combine it with a Zoom meeting? Could you do your morning handover as a stand-up meeting? There is also affirmative action that only Registered Managers can take to encourage movement amongst staff. If, for example, several staff members have professed a desire to cycle to and from work, do they have the indoor and outdoor facilities that they need to support their bike rides? In other words, are there enough secure bike racks outside the care home? And, are there showering facilities?

GOVERNMENT HELP ALSO NEEDED Alternatively, if it's the gym or the swimming pool that care professionals most want to access, then Registered Managers from larger carer groups may find that local leisure centres are prepared to offer their staff discounts. However, it is likely that staff working for smaller residential homes and domiciliary care providers may not be automati-

cally able to benefit in the same way. My advice, therefore, would be to write to the local authority and re-emphasise the point that care workers are extremely valued members of the community and have a right to use all of the facilities that those earning a higher wage enjoy. Low pay should be a barrier for hard working people – particularly care workers – to access leisure centres. In addition to the vast slew of reforms that the government has promised to make, it should also consider providing care sector workers with free access to leisure centres and mental health services. When taking into account the selflessness, dedication and courage of care professionals in the pandemic, this is a suggestion that the vast majority of the population would agree with, but anyone who takes a different view should at least see the practical side of the argument for doing so. In addition to better pay, care workers desperately need to have access to these services and key facilities. There is a possibility that this won’t be the last pandemic we see in our lifetimes, and if we are to contain future health crises, then we’ll need an agile, resourceful and resilient army of health care workers to make a significant impact. They’ll need to be both physically and mentally strong to demonstrate the same bravery and dedication that today’s care workers have exhibited in the current pandemic. Sadly, when this crisis finally begins to abate, many care workers will leave the profession feeling that they have could not give any more. Perhaps the greatest learning point is that as a society we did not protect and safeguard care worker’s mental health. We need to learn the lessons of history and give our care professionals the tools and the support they need to make a profound difference. Promoting movement on Thursday, April, 29th may not seem like a big step in reaching that goal, but if it persuades even a handful of Registered Managers to include exercise as a raft of holistic wellbeing measures that safeguard mental and physical wellbeing, then it is has done its job.

ON YOUR FEET THEN, BRITAIN! If you wish to find out more about QCS , why not contact QCS’s compliance advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email sales@qcs.co.uk? To learn more about ‘On Your Feet, Britain’, please see the following link: https://onyourfeetday.com

Maggie Keenan Praises NHS For Protecting Millions Against COVID Maggie Keenan, who made history when she became the first person in the world to receive an approved COVID-19 jab in December, has praised the hard work of “incredible” NHS staff in delivering the vaccination programme, during a Zoom call with NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens. On the call the 91-year-old grandmother of four thanked NHS staff and encouraged everyone to have their second doses of vaccine, as she was reunited with matron May Parsons, who delivered her first vaccine. During a recent visit to a Vaccination Centre, Sir Simon Stevens echoed Maggie’s thanks to NHS staff and volunteers, for their success in protecting those most at risk, and urged everyone to take up their second dose. Sir Simon Stevens, NHS chief executive, said: “We’re seeing patients coming forward in record numbers for their Oxford Astra/Zeneca second doses. People are voting with their feet, showing continuing strong

public support for the NHS COVID vaccination campaign which has already saved over 10,000 lives.” Maggie’s praise comes as the NHS vaccine programme, the biggest in health service history and fastest in Europe, continues to ramp up second doses for the most vulnerable patients. The NHS vaccination programme has now protected around 28 million people in England with at least one jab and delivered more than nine million second doses. Talking to the NHS chief over Zoom, Maggie said she felt honoured to be the first in the world to be protected against the virus and to “set the ball rolling”, as she urged others to come forward to get their jab when they are called. Reflecting on the efforts of NHS staff in rolling out the vaccine programme, she said: “They are incredible for what they have done – I think the NHS has achieved an enormous lot by doing the work they do, such a wonderful institution.” Maggie, a former jewellery shop owner who only retired four years ago, made history when she received the first Pfizer jab outside of a clinical trial at University Hospital, Coventry on December 8. She is now fully vaccinated, having received her second dose, and says she is looking forward to “a little holiday.” When asked by Sir Simon, Maggie urged others to ensure they receive the second dose to ensure they receive maximum protection, saying: “I’m telling everyone to go and get it because it really is the best thing I’ve ever done. I hope everyone comes forward. “There’s nothing to it, you don’t even feel anything. “I just feel really honoured to have had it done, to have been the first and to have got the ball rolling.” May Parsons, who is currently Modern Matron for Respiratory

Medicine at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, also spoke of her pride at delivering the first jab in December last year. May said: “Vaccinating Maggie was a little spark of light the midst of the darkness, and now I feel like the dawn is coming. It’s almost unbelievable that we’ve managed to roll out the vaccine so successfully.” May, who has worked for the NHS for almost 20 years since moving from the Philippines, added: “I’m really grateful to all my colleagues for the bravery and courage that they’ve shown throughout this pandemic, which has helped us care for our people and care for our patients like Maggie.” Sir Simon ended the call by saying: “Maggie, you’ve been an inspiration. May, you’ve set the whole of the health service on the path towards this hugely successful vaccination rollout. Thank you both so much.” During April, the NHS has been focusing on second doses, but appointments are still available for those in the initial priority groups who have not yet been protected. Anyone aged 45 and over can still arrange their jab, as well as people who are clinically vulnerable or a health and care worker, who should contact their GP for an appointment. Doctors, nurses and other health care professionals are delivering the life-saving jab at more than 1,600 sites ranging from cathedrals, mosques and temples to racecourses, sports stadiums, cinemas and museums, with more than 20 offering the Moderna jab over the last week. You can see the full video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61KSj4__aWE


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 5

Over 400,000 Social Care Staff Not Vaccinated, Research Suggests Over 400,000 of England’s adult social care workforce have not received a coronavirus vaccine, according to research. An estimated 80.4% of eligible staff working at older adult care homes

The figures came as the Government opened a public consultation on

leaves 417,989 social care staff who have not been vaccinated or whose

a proposal for staff to be required to get a jab as a condition of employ-

vaccination has not yet been recorded. The total includes over 1000 older adult care home staff who are not

ment to protect elderly residents. The figures show that the vaccination rate for staff at older adult care

had received the vaccination by April 18, NHS England said, and a total

eligible because they have had Covid-19 in the past 28 days and may

of 72.3% of staff working in independent Care Quality Commission-regis-

include a small number who work at a home currently in outbreak and

homes is below the level recommended by scientists advising the

tered younger adult care homes and domiciliary care providers have

therefore cannot be visited, and may also include staff who cannot be

Government in more than half of England’s local authorities.

received their first dose of Covid-19 vaccine.

vaccinated for valid medical reasons or staff whose vaccination status is

For social care staff working in other settings in England, including non-registered providers, the figure was 69.4%. According to analysis by PA news agency, 1.17 million out of 1.58 million social care staff in these settings have received a first dose, which

The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) says 80% of

currently unknown, while NHS England said there may be a time lag in

care home staff and 90% of residents need to be vaccinated to provide

vaccinations being reported.

a minimum level of protection against Covid-19 outbreaks.

Of the 417,989 total, 43% work in other settings including non-registered providers.

Figures published reveal that 76 out of 149 local authorities have not reached this threshold for employees.

Your Last Chance to Nominate The Carer’s Next Unsung Hero Once again we here at The Carer are looking for an Unsung Hero! A super deluxe luxury hamper will be the prize for the lucky winner!! Since the beginning of the Covid crisis we have been inundated with absolutely wonderful, uplifting and heartwarming stories from residential and nursing care homes around the country. It is always a delight to publish them! Fundraising, engaging with local schools and communities, baking, candlemaking, knitting, poetry, recitals, fancy dress, Chinese New Year – you name it we and have been receiving fun stories! Behind the scenes we have also received stories of the dedication commitment and devotion staff have shown in particular during these testing times. However, this the hard work and dedication that those working in the sector often in extremely challenging situa-

tions can go unnoticed! In previous years we have sought to redress that by inviting residential and nursing care homes to nominate somebody in their home who they believe is that “Unsung Hero”. Every care home will have somebody who goes that extra mile, and often receives little recognise or reward. Since we launched our Unsung Hero award we have always had a phenomenal response, with some absolutely heartwarming and uplifting stories. Your Unsung Hero can be from any department, frontline care, laundry, maintenance, kitchen, administration – we will leave that up to you. We will be drawing a winner on April 30, so please get your nomination with a short paragraph on what your nominee has done to deserve recognition and please send to:nominate@thecareruk.com

Martyn Davies, our last Unsung Hero

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PAGE 6 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

More Ways To Make Music In Care Homes

Good old-fashioned singalongs were one of the less devastating casualties of Covid when experts discovered a link between coronavirus outbreaks and adult choir rehearsals across the world. Here Jody Ashfield, managing director of outdoor musical instrument provider, Percussion Play explains how some care homes have used this time find more ways of making music. According to a government website, when adults sing, they produce 'large droplets of respiratory secretions that generally fall onto surfaces within two metres of the singer, and small droplets that are carried on the air for some distance' . There are also the ominously named 'super emitters' who presumably have the power to belt out a good ballad.

But music in all its forms is a key source of good emotional and mental health in care homes. It both stimulates and exercises the brain and, according to researchers at John Hopkins University in the USA, 'listening to music can reduce anxiety, blood pressure, and pain as well as improve sleep quality, mood, mental alertness, and memory.' However, music does not have to be about singing and words. A snatch of a melody may unlock memories, even if we can't remember what the tune is called, who sung it or even which decade it belongs to. For those care homes keen to reintroduce singing, the government's advice is that it can continue but it must be in larger well-ventilated spaces, or outdoors. There should be a limit on the number of people singing together and performances or rehearsals should be for shorter periods of time using microphones where necessary so people can sing quietly. But this will be a tall order for homes where residents are looking forward to getting together again, so centres may want to explore alternatives. Learning to play an instrument can be just as beneficial as singing. According to several surveys the most popular instruments for older people are drums, piano, guitar, recorder, ukulele and harmonica. Music making stimulates neural connections, improves memory and motor skills, reaction times and the ability to multitask. It also increases feelings of positivity. Some people just want to 'have a go', but others take it more seriously. Some recent converts like to have a teacher and regular scheduled sessions, others like to forge their own path, and some have found that YouTube is their ideal tutor as they can access it whenever they have a free moment. Some homes have found ingenious ways to keep music going when

restrictions were in place. During the winter when it was too chilly to spend much time outdoors, Milkwood’s Care Homes enjoyed Name That Tune and Sing-and-Dance events, Musical Bingo and Zumba. At one home residents compiled a list of their favourite music from their childhood while another organised a poll of favourite music and found Elvis, Cliff Richard and The Beatles were the most popular performers. Milkwood Care is one example of a care home group that has been pushing the boundaries by installing outdoor musical instruments, including weatherproof drums and xylophones, for their residents to access. In the past, instruments suitable for beginner musicians often looked as if they were designed for children but these instruments from Percussion Play are different. Not only do they look age-appropriate but they are tuned to the pentatonic scale so they will please even experienced, active musicians while being easy enough for a complete novice to get started. The Outdoor musical instruments have encouraged the residents to collaborate and use the instruments to create sounds that even impress themselves! Giving them a reason to get up and outside and engaging their hand-eye coordination, movement and balance has been a great success. Milkwood Care is now looking forward to the summer to give its residents a reason to get more mobile, and outside in the fresh air. Outdoor musical instruments are a new consideration for care homes but day by day senior residents across the UK are joining the growing numbers who are finding that music has many beneficial effects both for their physical and mental health.

Diving Into The Blue - Local Care Home Residents Visit Sea Life London Aquarium Staff and residents at Barchester’s Magnolia court care home in Hampstead were treated to a virtual tour of the wonderful underwater world of SEA LIFE London Aquarium, hosted by Senior Curator, James Wright and his expert team.

Lucy Tomlinson, Resident Experience Manager for Barchester Healthcare, commented: “We have been using technology to keep our residents and patients connected with their loved ones as well as offer virtual events, entertainment and activities throughout the pandemic. We are excited to work with our amazing partners like SEA LIFE London Aquarium to bring a wide range of fantastic experiences into our homes for all to enjoy, particularly as this talk provided such a lovely opportunity to see so many different animals and learn all kinds of fascinating facts about them.

SEA LIFE London Aquarium is home to more than 300 species and 4,000 creatures, including Gentoo Penguins, Sea Turtles and Seahorses, which are cared for by its dedicated team of 15 Aquarists. The shark tank alone is one million litres in volume and six metres deep and is home to five species of sharks – Sand Tigers called Bungle and Zippy, a Grey Reef Shark, Nurse Sharks, Tawny Nurse Shark and a shiver of Black Tip Reef Sharks as well as a Bowmouth Guitarfish called Betty.

“Our varied life enrichment programme keeps residents active and socially connected, providing a daily choice of engaging physical, mental and spiritual activities tailored to residents’ interests and abilities,” Lucy added.

James’ presentation featured getting up close and personal with SEA LIFE London Aquarium’s colony of Gentoo Penguins, residents were able to watch feeding time for Green Sea turtles and numerous sharks! James says: “It was wonderful to be able to show the Barchester residents some of the fantastic creatures we have at SEA LIFE London Aquarium, we are very proud of the work our brilliant teams do. We

were just so happy to be able to share our beautiful world beneath the waves with them.”

General Manager, Octavian Stanciu, said: “Our residents love finding out about new things and they are all especially interested in animals so we were delighted to be able to watch this presentation. We had so many questions, it was brilliant to be able to ask James and his team all about their experiences of working with the different creatures.”

Mr Motivator Gets Essex Seniors Moving TV’s wellbeing and fitness legend, Mr Motivator, 68, was “beamed” into over 70 care homes throughout Essex to give residents and staff a muchneeded boost. The uplifting event was held on 23rd April 2021 at 10.30am streamed directly into the communal rooms of care homes all over the county via Zoom. The workout was organised in association with Colchester Borough Council, the Essex FaNs Networkand Mr Motivator’s brand new online club which has been specially designed for the older person. The Motivation Club (www.mrmotivatorsclub.com) extends motivation beyond the physical and includes expert advice on sensible eating, mental fitness, and provides a community to help battle loneliness, especially in older people. According to Sport England’s Active Lives survey, Coronavirus lockdowns have caused “unprecedented” falls in activity levels. 11.6 million people are now classed as inactive in the UK and the research shows this increases the older you get. 60% of over 75 year olds do less than 30 minutes of walking or activity per week. Research from Age UK also shows that many previously independent adults now report finding it harder to do daily activities such as going up the stairs or walking the same distances they used to be able to since the start of the pandemic. The CLUB is a place for all ages and fitness levels but Mr Motivator particularly wants to help improve the quality of life for older people: “There isn’t anything available for the over 65’s or people starting out their fitness journey who don’t want to go to a gym or spend 30 minutes doing press ups and burpees. The CLUBmakes mental and physical exercise fun and accessible to everyone from 3 to 93 with my 6 minutemodules.” The CLUB’s concept, exercise and sensible eating plans have been developed and endorsed by Dr Kathy Fulcher, Ireland’s leading exercise physiologist and nutritionist. Dr Fulcher has worked with Mr Motivator tobuild a team of specialist ‘Motivators’ from all over the UK and Ireland to create the expert advice, support

and activities. All experts in their fields the ‘Motivators’ have been hand picked to allow the CLUB to offer classes from yoga, pilates, cookery and nutrition, strength conditioning, music therapy, mindfulness, mental health workouts, HITT, and of course Mr Motivator’s trademark lycra-clad workout classes. Many of the instructors have been selected for their experience of working with older people and all Mr Motivator’s classes include his wife, Palmer, who performs all the exercises from a chair, demonstrating how you can still take part if you have any mobility issues. This is a test pilot event and, if successful, will be rolled out to other care homes all over the country. Says Mr Motivator: “Your wellbeing is a way of life. The most important thing you can have is an independent, healthier you. You must not underestimate the impact that exercise can have onyour mental and physical wellbeing. There is a curative power to exercise and those who are least active stand to benefit the most from their health and happiness.” Says Tony Lee, Community Networks Lead for Essex from FaNs, an innovative project aimed at reducing loneliness and isolation from the lives of elderly care home residents says: “We’re super excited here at FaNs Essex for our care home residents to be able to join in and have some fun in movement with one of the country’s most loved fitness gurus! “Physical and mental health are closely aligned and having fun whilst working out, however gently, will bring great pleasure to our oldest generation of people. We’re looking forward to the next one already, andhope to extend even further with the number of care homes contributing.” Lucie Breadman, Colchester Borough Council Assistant Director for Communities said: “We are really excited to have Mr. Motivator encourage and entertain our care home residents in Colchester and across the county, helping our community become healthier and more active”.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 7

Coronavirus No Longer the Main Cause of Deaths in England and Wales COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death in England and Wales in March behind dementia and heart disease according to data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is now the leading caused of death in England, accounting for 10.1% of all fatalities registered in March. Ischaemic heart disease was the leading cause of deaths in Wales during March, accounting for 11.8% of all fatalities. ONS data revealed that COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death in both countries for March, accounting for 9.2% of all fatalities registered in England and 6.3% in Wales. The new data comes a day after the Government said a further 22 people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 as of Wednesday, bringing the UK total to 127,327. Separate figures published by the UK’s statistics agencies show there have been 151,000 deaths registered in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.

Provisional ONS figures, published on Thursday, show there were 45,567 deaths registered in England in March, 956 fewer than in the same month last year but 656 more than the five-year average from 2015-19. James White, Head of Public Affairs and Campaigns at Alzheimer’s Society said: ‘It’s great to see Covid deaths dropping, particularly for people with dementia, worst hit by coronavirus, but we are hugely concerned that dementia returns as the leading cause of death in the UK, while still so much needs to be done to support people with the condition. ‘People with dementia have deteriorated significantly more than we would usually expect during the last year, so we are extremely concerned we’ll see a rise of pandemic-related dementia deaths continuing. We urgently need the government to introduce a national strategy to help prevent people living with dementia from permanently losing any more vital skills, and provide crucial support to those in care positions. And they need to follow through with their manifesto commitment to increasing dementia research funding so we can continue to make life changing progress. There is currently no cure for dementia, but with funding for research we will get there.’

105 Year Old Bristol Care Home Resident Becomes Social Media Star Edna Alvis, a resident at Brunelcare’s Deerhurst care home, has gone ‘viral’ on social media after her 105th birthday celebrations were recorded by BBC Radio Bristol. On Thursday 15th April, the easing of lockdown restrictions allowed Edna to celebrate her 105th birthday with a small garden party at Deerhurst. Her party included flowers, cake and balloons, and she even received her second birthday card from the Queen. BBC Radio Bristol joined in on the celebrations, recording the day to share on their social media channels. After posting the story on Facebook, Edna’s story was shared around the world and she has received over 4,000 birthday messages – including from the USA, Australia, and Nigeria! One well-wisher said: “Happy birthday. What’s your secret? You

don’t even look 90” Edna revealed that the secret to staying young is ‘having a great family and a sherry on a Sunday’. Edna has enjoyed reading all of the comments, and is overwhelmed by the number of birthday wishes she has received. Lesley Hobbs, Manager at Deerhurst care home, said: “Edna is thrilled. She can’t believe all the attention it’s received but she is one very happy lady, and thoroughly enjoying the limelight.” Edna moved into Deerhurst care home in 2018 after thinking she only had three weeks to live, but after receiving dedicated care she has now been enjoying her time at Brunelcare for three years. Edna said: “Here it’s been marvellous, I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. They have been marvellous to all of us, we don’t want for anything.”

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PAGE 8 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

Social Care In A Post-Covid World

By Tony Stein, Chief Executive, Healthcare Management Solutions (www.hcsolutions.co.uk)

The impact of the pandemic on social care settings is well documented. In the 12 months since the UK entered its first lockdown, the number of elderly people living in social care settings has dropped by around 10% overall, and whilst it varies from service to service, the average occupancy numbers being reported by operators support this figure. When this will recover to pre-covid levels is yet to be seen, however the high death rate among the elderly population has, in the short term, reduced the numbers of people looking for care and the volume of enquiries has fallen. It should be remembered that it is the local authorities that have a duty under the Care Act to manage the availability of provision in their areas and, to ensure that sufficient numbers of the right type of beds are maintained. LA’s are not financially able to improve fees to providers

to a level that will allow them to survive at occupancy levels where they are now. Without central government support the care sector would have been in dire financial trouble that would only have been possible to survive with the forbearance of lenders, landlords and investors. Once central government financial support is withdrawn, and this must happen eventually, there will be casualties, thus reducing the available provision of beds at a time when the elderly population is growing. If homes that currently provide for the public pay part of the market close, the margins at current LA fee levels do not support the building of new services given the capital cost. In other words, once it’s gone, it’s gone for good. It has been said that the pandemic has demonstrated the need for care homes to have en-suite accommodation to better provide for the isolation and barrier nursing of those infected. There is, as yet no actual analysis or evidence to demonstrate that death rates were higher in homes that lacked en-suite accommodation. There is a detailed study in Scotland, carried out by the universities of Glasgow and Edinburgh, that clearly shows that larger homes had proportionately higher mortality rates, however this could be because larger homes are generally located in areas of higher population density. If home size was the issue, then logically it would suggest smaller homes would be the way to go postcovid to minimise future risk. If, however it was asymptomatic transmission by staff moving between the homes and a much higher densely populated community, then this would suggest that homes would be better in sub-urban or rural environments. Either way, there is a cost to replacing or moving existing provision that cannot be met at current fee levels. One thing is for sure, and that is that funding needs to allow providers to offer sick pay to ensure that employees are not forced, through eco-

nomic need, to attend work when feeling ill. What the pandemic has shown clearly is that at times like this, the NHS and social care need to work closely to provide a functional solution. It was also clear that central government had to step in to provide the emergency support that was required to enable providers to buy PPE, pay staff (additional staff, sick pay, furlough pay), cover voids in beds, and purchase equipment. During this pandemic, the LA’s were used as pass-through agencies as a way of distributing funding. Because of this, each local authority took a slightly different approach, leading to a ‘postcode lottery’ in funding with some actively encouraging take-up by providers whilst others made access much more difficult. A national care service, funded centrally, could have managed this far better. Pre-Covid there were huge disparities between different LA’s and their ability to meet their obligations to fund care. This isn’t going to be any easier post-Covid as LA’s face the problem of recovering from the additional spending that they’ve incurred during the pandemic. In addition, as high streets have seen shop closures and people have become more settled into different patterns of working, LA revenue streams will dry up (business rates, parking revenues, higher urban unemployment); the worry is that the disparities will only get worse. Some difficult issues, and only a detailed analysis of how and where deaths occurred will allow us to know what needs to change for the inevitable next pandemic. It is too early to be making informed decisions, but one thing is for sure: if LA fees remain where they are, we need to rely on the existing care home stock to provide the beds for the foreseeable future. This means protecting the services that are out there and I am certain that LA’s that couldn’t fund care needs pre-Covid are in a far worse position to fund them now.

Basingstoke Care Home Buries Lockdown Time Capsule Old Raven House care home in Hook near Basingstoke has commemorated the recent easing of lockdown restrictions by planting a time capsule in the home’s garden.

organise something meaningful to help staff and residents begin to move on from a tumultuous year.

Recent easing of lockdown restrictions has allowed the home, based on London Road, to facilitate indoor visits with a resident’s nominated visitor.

The residents and staff filled the time capsule with written notes of their thoughts about life during a pandemic, items of PPE and a COVID testing kit, and buried it in the garden underneath a rose bush, a highly scented climbing rose, chosen by the residents.

Sylvia McKenzie, 87, a resident at Old Raven House, said: “Creating the time capsule was a lot of fun, and it was great to get our thoughts down on paper and bury them in the ground!

Burying the time capsule was arranged by the home’s activities lead, Helen Wise, who wanted to

“I hope that in years to come, someone finds our time capsule and enjoys learning more about the

strange and eventful year we have had.”

Helen said: “Recently, we have spent a lot of time reflecting on the past year with our staff and residents and planting a time capsule seemed like the perfect activity for everyone to get involved in. “We found that writing our thoughts down on paper was very therapeutic and we really hope that someone finds the capsule and learns all about our first-hand experiences of the pandemic.”

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 9

Mandatory Vaccinations For Care Staff “Appalling” Says Specialist Care Leader The chairman of a specialist care company has dismissed the idea of compulsory vaccinations for staff caring for older adults as “appalling”. Neil Russell heads PJ Care, a provider of care for adults with degenerative conditions such as dementia, Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, and those with acquired brain injuries. The company employs 250 staff at its Eagle Wood care centre in Peterborough plus a total of 220 staff at its two centres in Milton Keynes. The majority of the team have been vaccinated but Neil says they won’t make it a condition of employment. “I’m pleased to the see that the government has launched a consultation, rather than just pushing ahead with this, but I am appalled by the

idea of making vaccinations mandatory. It would only cause unnecessary and irrevocable damage to a sector that has suffered more than most during the pandemic. There are many reasons staff may have for waiting to have the vaccine, or even refusing it altogether - being pregnant is one example as there is not yet enough evidence to determine the safety of the vaccines for expectant mothers. In the UK, vaccinations are well-established but that’s not the case for all cultures, some of which have experienced historical misuse of vaccines that still give cause for concern today. “It is a case of trust. This mistrust can be overcome, but only through time and demonstration of the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine. Making it mandatory will only increase the mistrust.” The Department of Health and Social Care is considering compulsory vaccinations for staff in settings caring for at least one person over the age of 65 as this age is group is more at risk from coronavirus. The Social Care Working Group of SAGE has advised that an uptake rate of 80% in staff and 90% in residents in every care home would be needed to provide a minimum level of protection against outbreaks of COVID19. At the beginning of this month, the vaccination rate among care home staff stood at 78.9% with figures in some regions being considerably lower.

Neil Russell, who was the first of his staff to receive the COVID-19 vaccination at Milton Keynes Hospital, says making vaccination compulsory would have disastrous effects on the industry. “The sector could lose enough staff to embroil an already underfunded industry in a recruitment war as homes seek to fill vacancies. This would result in financial problems for many homes, causing closures and people in need of care having nowhere to go, but into hospitals that are already struggling with bed availability. “We must ask why the government is only looking at imposing the vaccine on care workers in homes with anyone over the age of 65 and not elsewhere such as homes with younger vulnerable adults or hospitals where patients are more vulnerable. Not enough is known about the vaccine yet to be able to evidence its effect on transmission rates so even with all staff vaccinated, the risk to those in their care remains the same and staff will still need to wear full PPE and follow strict infection control measures. “While vaccinating care workers is important, greater protection can be achieved by ensuring the residents are vaccinated, combined with diligent infection control measures and effective use of PPE. That’s the way I believe we will best protect the vulnerable in all our care facilities.”

Magnolia Court Celebrate The Bard’s Birthday ‘To be or not to be’ was the question on everyone’s lips at Magnolia Court Care Home, in Hampstead, as residents and staff celebrated Shakespeare Day on April 23rd. In honour of the world’s greatest playwright, staff and residents at the home marked the anniversary of his birth with a movie-a-thon watching some personal well-known favourites like ‘Macbeth’, ‘Hamlet’ and the unforgettable story of ‘Romeo & Juliet’ all over the home. General Manager, Octavian Stanciu said: “Everyone at Magnolia Court really enjoyed today’s activity. We have had a fun-packed day, I think everyone enjoyed seeing our resident ambassador dressed to the nines in his William Shakespeare’s finery, which was hilarious! Resident, Ann, commented: “I can remember studying Shakespeare when I was at school and it is amazing how much of it comes back to you, even after all these

years. It is fascinating to think Shakespeare was born in 1564 and his plays are still studied and staged all over the world.” Our varied life enrichment programme keeps residents active, and provides a daily choice of engaging physical, mental and spiritual activities tailored to residents’ interests and abilities. We are welcoming new residents into our homes to ensure that we are there for those that need care and support. We’re making our homes as safe as possible and will ensure that all new residents and staff are vaccinated before moving in or working in our homes. Please do give us a call on 0208 731 9881 if you are looking for care or need any further help. Magnolia Court is run by Barchester Healthcare, one of the UK’s largest care providers, which is committed to delivering high-quality care across its care homes and hospitals. Magnolia Court provides nursing care, residential care, and respite care.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 11

Celebrities Join Forces with NHS to Encourage Cancer Checks Sir Andrew Strauss, the exEngland cricket captain who lost his wife to lung cancer, has backed an NHS and Public Health England campaign urging people to get checked if they test negative for Covid-19 but have a cough that lasts for more than three weeks. Sir Andrew has joined television presenter Gaby Roslin, who lost her mother to lung cancer, and others whose lives have been changed by the disease in a film warning not to leave it too late to get a check. Finding lung cancer early, like other cancers, makes it more treatable. However, research commissioned by the NHS and Public Health England found almost half of people do not know that a persistent cough for more than three weeks can be a lung cancer symptom. And two thirds of people, 61%, would not make an appointment with their GP if they had a cough lasting three weeks or more and had tested negative for coronavirus. The findings have been released as NHS England and Public Health England launch a major new drive encouraging people to get check by a GP if they have lung cancer symptoms. In the poignant short film Sir Andrew, whose wife Ruth died aged 46, stressed that anyone coughing for three weeks or more should get checked. Sir Andrew Strauss, Ex-England Cricket Captain and Founder of the

Ruth Strauss Foundation, said: “This is a campaign very close to my heart after losing my wife, Ruth, to lung cancer in 2018. Lung cancer is a risk for everyone - Ruth had never smoked a cigarette in her life and was unbelievably fit and healthy. It’s so important that if you notice any loved ones showing symptoms that could be a sign of cancer that you encourage them to contact their GP practice.” Around 39,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer each year. Those whose cancer is caught at the earliest point, referred to as stage one, have a 57.7% chance of living for another five years, compared to 3.1% for those diagnosed at stage four. Television, radio and podcast presenter, Gaby Roslin said: “I remember sitting there on the phone to the doctor and she said ‘I’m afraid it is lung cancer’. Looking back on it my mum never told us how she was feeling, she was always making sure that we were all OK and making sure that my Dad was ok. If you catch it early it can make the biggest difference.” The NHS Long Term Plan aims to increase the number of cancer patients diagnosed early, at stage one or two, from half to three quarters. The health service has seen more people come forward for cancer checks since the first peak of the pandemic but lung cancer referrals are at 73% of the same point last year. Research found that the main reasons people gave for not contacting their GP were wanting to wait to see if symptoms would go away on their own (25%) and being worried about burdening the NHS (31%). More than three-quarters (76%) of respondents said they would encourage their loved ones to make an appointment with their GP if they kept coughing but knew they did not have Covid-19. The Help Us

Help You campaign includes a series of TV adverts encouraging anyone with an ongoing cough to not delay contacting their GP. Professor Peter Johnson, National Clinical Director for Cancer for NHS England, said: “If you have had a negative Covid test but are still coughing after three weeks, do not delay – you must come forward to get a lung cancer check. Otherwise we are going to see people with cancer that’s become more advanced and much harder to treat. “It is understandable that people haven’t wanted to trouble the health service during the pandemic or have been worried about attending appointments because of the Covid risk. However, the risk of a cancer that you don’t pay attention to is much greater than the risk of coronavirus. GP practices have introduced a series of measures to make them Covid-safe. The NHS is open and ready to see anyone with a concerning symptom – it could save your life.” Professor Sir Paul Cosford, KCB, CB, Emeritus Medical Director at Public Health England and lung cancer patient, said: “Having been diagnosed with late stage lung cancer in 2017, I am passionate about this campaign. Nothing can prepare you for being told you have cancer. I cannot emphasise enough the importance of going to your GP as soon as you notice any symptoms, such as a cough for three weeks or more. The NHS wants to see you.” From the start of the pandemic to December, 228,000 people started NHS treatment for cancer, 95% of whom did so within a month. Hospitals across England have also carried out more than two cancer procedures for every patient they treated for coronavirus in 2020. Despite this, latest figures show GP referrals for lung cancer remain lower than the same point last year. Visit www.nhs.uk/cancersymptoms for more information.

Army Veteran Colin On New Manoeuvres At Broughton House A soldier who spent more than 30 years as a regular in the British Army has joined Broughton House Veteran Care Village in Salford as its head of facilities. Colin Adams, aged 50, joined the army as a 16-yearold in 1986 and served in the Royal Artillery and then the Royal Logistics Corps during an exemplary military career. He has a number of campaign medals, including from the first Gulf War, Kosovo and Afghanistan. Colin left the regular army in 2017 as a warrant officer but maintained his service involvement as a Squadron Sergeant Major with the reservist 236 (Manchester) Squadron, which is part of the 156 Regiment Royal Logistics Corps. During Operation Rescript, the military operation to

“I’m really enjoying the role and working with a great help tackle the Covid-19 pandemic, Colin was fully mobilised as the deputy military liaison officer for Greater team of people who are very dedicated to the residents. I Manchester, working with the NHS, police forces, fire and feel I’m lucky to be here in this job.” rescue services and local authorities across the region. Broughton House chief executive Karen Miller said: He was demobbed in February and seized the chance “Colin has made an immediate impact and has shown he to join Broughton House when the opportunity arose. is an excellent fit for the role. In his role, he co-ordinates the full range of the care “After a full career in the regular army and now a village’s facilities spanning the buildings, the grounds, reservist in the RLC, his military training and experience security, maintenance, equipment, vehicle transport and has given him the skills to undertake the role effectively, stores. his background has enabled him to instantly build a while Colin, who lives in Rossendale, Lancashire, said: “It’s close to home and I jumped at the chance to work with veterans.

rapport with our veteran residents.”

Broughton House is currently undergoing a £13m

transformation to create the UK’s first Veteran Care “They deserve the best for all they have done for the country, and I wanted to do something to give back to them. Village.


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!)

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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.

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 13

Urgent Action Needed As Dementia Identified As Leading Cause Of Death In England Alzheimer’s Research UK said the dementia crisis cannot be ignored any longer after the Office of National Statistics confirmed that dementia and Alzheimer’s disease was the leading cause of death in England in March 2021. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease claimed more lives than COVID19, which had been the leading cause of mortality since October 2020, accounting for 10.1% of all deaths registered in March. One in four people who died of COVID-19 had dementia, while the dementia diagnosis rate has dropped by 43,000 since March 2020. The UK’s leading dementia research charity said the figures underlined the urgent need for more funding into dementia research. Nearly a million people are estimated to be living with dementia in the UK but there are currently no life-changing treatments for the condition. Hilary Evans, Chief Executive at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “It is of little comfort to people with dementia that COVID-19 is no

longer the leading cause of death in England. “People with dementia have been hit disproportionately hard during the pandemic, and these latest figures released by the ONS show that

as one crisis appears to ease, another remains as urgent as ever. “Dementia is one of the biggest health challenges we are facing and the pandemic has only served to highlight the urgency with which we must tackle it. “The government must honour its manifesto pledge to double its funding for dementia research. The nation’s scientific community has responded magnificently to the COVID-19 pandemic and shows what can be achieved when people come together to deal with such a significant health challenge. “With more funding, we can use the lessons learned during the pandemic as an opportunity to enhance research into dementia and move closer to finding a life-changing treatment by 2025. “We encourage anyone who has not already done so to sign our petition urging the government to deliver on its election promise.” Sign the petition at https://www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/campaigns/dementia-research-at-risk-petition/

Hip, Hip, Hooray For St George’s Day! In honour of the patron saint of England, staff and residents at the home marked the day with watching videos of St George’s Day parades on YouTube, learning to Morris dance, virtual visit to the pub, quiz, holding a tea party, virtual tours of traditional English landmarks. Giving the celebrations a gourmet twist, the head chef at the home Wilsmere prepared traditional roast lamb. General Manager, Lili Cocue said: “Everyone at Wilsmere House really enjoyed today’s festivities. We had everything from. our staff dress up in fancy dress for the day and everyone was really keen to It was all dragons and roses all round at Wilsmere House care home, in Harrow weald, as residents and staff celebrated St George’s Day. Legend has it St George was a soldier in the Roman army who slayed a dragon and saved a princess, the anniversary of his death is celebrated as England’s national day.

get involved. The residents, said “Celebrating St George’s Day today has been so enjoyable. I especially loved the quiz and learning how to Morris dance – we even had a virtual trip to the pub which was so much fun. The staff here think of everything to make sure we make the most of occasions like this.”

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PAGE 14 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

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

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

THE APPLICABLE LEGISLATION There are three separate offences which may be relevant to such a situation.

Under section 7 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 1) (“HSWA”) care home staff are required to take reasonable care for the health and safety of others who may be affected by their acts or omissions. Failure to do so is an offence punishable up to two years’ imprisonment. If a resident dies, in rare circumstances a care home worker may 2) face prosecution for ‘gross negligence manslaughter’. This may arise where the death is considered to have resulted from a breach of the worker’s duty of care towards the deceased. The worker will only be liable if they breached that duty of care through a negligent act or omission; at the time of the breach there was a serious and obvious risk of death, which was reasonably foreseeable; and the negligence, which caused or significantly contributed towards the death, was so bad that it amounted to gross negligence and therefore requires criminal sanction. Following the Mid Staffordshire Inquiry, new legislation was enacted 3) making it an offence for care workers to ‘ill-treat or wilfully neglect’ an individual in their care (section 20 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015). ‘Wilful neglect’ means deliberately neglecting to do something which should be done in the treatment of a patient. It is no defence for a worker to argue that even if they had administered the treatment, it would have made no difference to the patient’s health. ‘Ill-treatment’ means deliberate conduct which can be described as ill-treatment (irrespective of whether it actually damaged, or threatened to damage the health of the patient). The worker needs to appreciate that they were ill-treating the patient, or to have been reckless as to whether they were acting in that way. If found guilty, a person can be sentenced up to five years’ imprisonment.

ARE WE GOING TO SEE MORE ARRESTS OF CARE HOME WORKERS

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

Intergeneration Project Is A Huge Hit With Liverpool Care Home Residents All Residents of HC-One’s Ash Court residential care home, in Knotty Ash, were overjoyed by the kindness bestowed upon them from the local community. A new intergeneration project had been arranged between Wellbeing Coordinator Natasha and Joanne Kennedy, who runs the Drive Foodbank on Finch Lane. Joanne and her team arranged for gift bags to be given to all Residents; inside included a tasty box of chocolates as well as some personal gifts from children who attend education facilities in the local community. Joanne also spoilt Residents by providing them with extra stimulating resources for activities, including jigsaws, crossword books, colouring books, colouring pens and much more. Natasha was very pleased, “Residents will be busy for a long time having fun with their new materials!” Earlier this month, local children from East Prescot Road Nursery and Blackmoor Park Primary School surprised all of the wonderful Residents with some fabulous Easter gifts. The children from the nursery created some wonderful Easter cards for Residents and Blackmoor Park School wrote letters of hope for everyone. These wonderful and kind gifts were dropped off at the home by Joanne a few days before the Easter holidays.

Natasha started the task of distributing these gift bags to all Residents who were overjoyed by the surprise, and were also overwhelmed by the beautifully written letters of hope and Easter cards that were made by all the children. One Resident said, “A lot of effort has gone into surprising us all. The children are so kind, I can’t stop smiling.” Residents wanted to reply back to the letters of hope that they received, so Natasha, and fellow Colleagues Marlene, Ian and Jan S spent one to one time with Residents. They read out their letters to them and assisted Residents in writing back. Natasha commented, “Our Residents are really excited and looking forward to hearing some feedback from the children and really do hope that this Intergenerational project is the start of many wonderful interactions between the residents and local children in the community.” Some very positive comments were made including: “Resident’s would love to meet all the children who were involved in this project as they’ve been so thoughtful and kind. Everyone has really enjoyed reading the letters of hope from the children as well as admiring the artwork from the nursery children.”

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Portishead Care Home Celebrates 20th Year Anniversary A Portishead care home has celebrated 20 years of delivering care in the community this month with a virtual party. Staff and residents at Petersfield marked the occasion on Friday 16th April with an afternoon tea party, with virtual attendance from family and friends,

The home provides respite and residential care for 36 service users, providing a structured environment and therapeutic activities to encourage confidence and assist in maximising independence. Home Manager Lin Rees said: “While we would have loved to have been

as well as Liam Fox MP and Alun Thomas, chairman of Shaw healthcare –

able to welcome more people into the home to celebrate, it was still a nice

which operates the care home.

treat to see so many faces virtually.

Included in the event was administrator Kay Kellet, the home’s longest-

“So much has changed over the last 20 years, but the high quality of care

serving employee after joining in October 2013 as well as Philip Wyatt, who

provided by our staff has not. We get to know residents and families and

moved into the home in 2008 and has lived there longer than anyone else.

offer the individual care people need.”


PAGE 16 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

How Technology Can Reduce Stress Amongst Those Residing In Social And Healthcare Settings By Stuart Solomons, founder of Ernie Connects (https://connects.ernie.digital/) The Mental Health Foundation estimates 74 per cent of UK adults felt so stressed at some point over the last 12 months that they became overwhelmed or unable to cope. Furthermore, recent research by the Stress Management Society found that 65 per cent of people in the UK have felt more stressed since the COVID-19 restrictions began in March 2020. Put simply, stress is one of the great public health challenges of our time, yet it still isn’t being taken as seriously as physical health concerns, despite being a key driver in exacerbating mental health problems such as anxiety and depression. Reflecting on the last year, it has become clearly evident all sectors of the economy were, and still are, significantly impacted by coronavirus, but arguably none more so than the social and healthcare sectors. For those working, residing and recovering in these areas, stress has been commonplace for varying reasons. For the elderly and vulnerable, in particular, stress can be triggered by what we call the three plagues of care; loneliness, boredom and helplessness. With the Stress Management Society’s theme for Stress Awareness Month 2021 being ‘Regaining Connectivity, Certainty and Control’, we want to highlight how technology can help combat these ‘plagues’ through the power of human connection. In a care home, the two major causes of stress for residents are admissions and illness. First, let’s look at the prior. The hours leading up to and after a resident’s admission into a social care setting can, plausibly, be very stressful. While the family of the resident may initially be present for the move and help them to settle into their new environment, once they have left, the resident may begin to feel socially isolated. Even if the care home has a CQC rating of ‘Outstanding‘ and the carers are adept at looking after the individual’s needs, the individual will still be conscious their family is no longer with them. This is where the aforementioned three plagues can begin to manifest. The solution? Technology. We are extremely fortunate to live in an age where technological advancements are constantly empowering people to live better, healthier lives. For instance, there are handheld devices on the market that promote

and encourage social interaction with loved ones. Specifically tailored to social and healthcare settings, these simplified tablets enable residents to stay connected in real-time, through one-touch video and audio calls. Equipped with such a device when moving into the care home, the resident will no longer feel disconnected from family and friends between visitation. Now, when the family leaves the resident following admission, they have the ability to tap a screen and instantaneously be talking with them before they’ve even pulled out of the care home’s driveway. The option of having a tool that offers real-time interaction with the people who residents care most about, on a 24/7 basis, provides reassurance and calmness, thereby eliminating stress. This type of smart technology can also help reduce stress and anxiety around illness among residents in care settings when they need to be admitted to hospital. In these unfortunate instances, residents can be left confused and frightened by the unpleasant experience of the sudden change of scenery, all while feeling unwell. With handheld smart technology, the resident or a care home staff member can connect them with their family swiftly, through one-touch features. The peace of mind of being able to hear and/or see their loved ones while on route to the hospital cannot be understated. The psychological reassurance of their family being able to virtually hold their hand during the transitional period from care home to hospital, is critical to easing nerves and stressful triggers. Families can even liaise with clinicians virtually through the tablet about the resident’s health and next steps upon arrival at the hospital, offering reassurance to them too, while the resident settles into their new surroundings. A problem shared is a problem halved, particularly for those who are elderly and vulnerable. Overall, stress can be a minefield, with unexpected triggers being set off at any moment. While we all experience stress throughout our everyday lives, we now have more solutions to subside or even eliminate it entirely in certain situations. Smart technology is one of those solutions. Utilising devices that are specifically researched and designed to curb stress through promoting human connection and interaction, is one of the most powerful tools we have at our disposal. We’re no longer getting a glimpse of the future for technological solutions that provide a better quality of life. They are here, now. If we, as a sector, are serious about reducing stress and promoting healthier, happier lives for residents, whose stress triggers can be compounded if not dealt with, then we must look towards championing human connection through smart technology. Stuart Solomons is the founder of Ernie Connects, a free, fully integrated, COVID-proof communications platform developed specifically for older people. Via an innovative, handheld device residents and patients can stay connected in real-time, through one-touch video and audio calls.

Former Colonel Secretary Celebrates 100th Birthday At Local Care Home A woman living in Elmcroft Nursing Home in Shoreham-By-Sea has celebrated her 100th birthday with a tea party. Muriel Murray, known to her friends as Peggy, was born in Surrey on April 14 1921, and has lived at the home since last year. Described as a ‘popular and feisty resident’, she is one of four siblings who unfortunately lost their father in 1934 at the young age of 43. He had been badly injured during the First World War where he had lost a leg, and suffered with stomach injuries that plagued him for the rest of his life. Their mother, Winnie, died shortly after, aged 49. Peggy worked at Bletchley Park as a secretary to a colonel during the Second World War, and believes one of the reasons for her good health was due to the marching she did on parade every morning. Her husband, Colin Murray, worked as a personal manager at International Stores during the 1970’s. They lived together in Harrow in Middlesex where they

enjoyed being surrounded by birdlife and squirrels but when Colin retired, they moved to Sidmouth in Devon, where they joined many local societies - including the golf club and lawn bowls. Although they never had children of their own, Peggy and Colin remained close with Tricia and Alec – Peggy’s youngest sister and husband – and whom she moved in with when Colin sadly died in 2012. Monica Donald, manager of the Shaw healthcare-operated home, said: “We’ve loved having Peggy at Elmcroft and hope she enjoyed the afternoon tea party to celebrate her landmark birthday. “It’s welcome news to the staff and residents that COVID-19 restrictions on care home visits are beginning to ease, and with the success of the vaccination programme so far, we hope we can celebrate next year’s birthdays with families and friends in person.”

Families Celebrate One Year of Creative Support For People With Learning Disabilities From cinema nights at home to weekly Zoom parties, families have paid tribute to support workers at a learning disability service in Bishops Stortford, following a year that has seen them provide “exemplary” care for their relatives. The service, which is run by national charity Hft, has adapted how people with learning disabilities are supported over the last year, with frontline support workers finding creative ways to promote the wellbeing of people living at the service. This has included providing alternatives to activities in the community that people have struggled not being able to access, such as visits to the cinema. After several people were missing regular trips to their local cinema, staff decided to set up frequent ‘film nights’, including a big screen, cinema snacks and an opportunity for people to put their names into a hat to select a film. By recreating a popular activity, support workers boosted morale at the service by creating a sense of routine and giving people something to look forward to, as well as an opportunity to be creative by getting involved in putting the themed evenings together. Another much loved activity that has been missed over the last year is socialising with others, both in the local community and further afield. After staff observed that some supported people were experiencing low moods after losing the social aspect of their day to day routines, they looked into alternative virtual options. This has included attending online community groups to catch up with friends and has also seen the charity moving its speak out group for people with learning disabilities online. Voices to be Heard enables people supported by Hft to get together to discuss the issues affecting them, as well as have their say on how they want to be supported. Recent meetings of the group, where people have had the chance to discuss how they’re feeling and make plans for the future have resulted in people

re-establishing their social networks, leading to an improvement in mental health. Ensuring people are able to stay in touch with family has been another major priority for support workers at the learning disability service. Using a range of services including apps, video calls, instant messenger services and even postcards, people have been able to stay connected with their loved ones despite not always being able to enjoy face to face contact. This has included Jude, who was used to seeing her four sisters and nieces and nephews on a regular basis. When staff noticed she was struggling without visits, they worked together with Jude’s family to arrange Zoom parties, where Jude was supported to attend a weekly catch up with her sisters and wider family. With staff on hand to support Jude to log in and provide her with refreshments, the weekly event has re-established an important routine for Jude, who strokes the faces of her family on screen and enjoys discussing plans for future holidays and get togethers. Jude’s sister, Tessa, said: “My sisters and I are just so grateful for the amazing, dedicated work of all the staff who care for Jude. It is so reassuring to know that she is genuinely loved. We are so grateful for the extra special care that has been needed over the last year – knowing that Jude has been shielded so well has been a huge comfort.” Adolf Kamusoko, Regional Manager at Hft, said: “The past year has been extremely challenging for everyone, but particularly so for people with learning disabilities, for whom changes in routine can be more difficult to deal with. That’s why I’m so grateful to our incredible staff teams, who have worked creatively to make the transition into a new way of life as smooth as possible, all while keeping the safety and wellbeing of the people they support at the forefront of their minds.


PAGE 18 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

Stunning New Photographs Show The People Behind The National Vaccination Effort them the strongest possible protection from this virus, with over 45 million vaccines administered overall. Throughout February and March, Palmer, Edward and McBurney visited the Science Museum in London, Salisbury Cathedral, the Royal Welsh Showground in mid-Wales and Rathlin Island in Northern Ireland, as well as hospitals, mobile vaccination units, care homes and pop-up vaccination sites. These never-before-seen images, which illustrate the monumental and collective effort of NHS teams, volunteers and members of the public, have been compiled into a video montage to mark the success of the vaccine programme to date. They provide an opportunity for people to look back on the programme, reflecting on the heroic efforts to protect those most vulnerable to Covid-19 and look ahead to the second phase of the vaccination programme, which will see all adults offered a first dose by the end of July. A major new campaign marking the second phase of the national vaccination rollout will be launched to encourage people aged 50 and under to get their jab when their turn comes.

Working with the NHS, photojournalists have captured the monumental collective effort of the largest vaccination programme in British history in a series of poignant, never-before-seen photographs Images show intimate moments across the UK, including in Salisbury Cathedral, the Royal Welsh Showground in mid-Wales and on Rathlin Island in Northern Ireland The new photo montage comes as over 45 million jabs in total have been administered across the UK in over 2,800 vaccination sites A series of unseen photographs capturing the size and scale of the UK-wide vaccination programme have been published by the UK government today ahead of a new campaign urging under-50s to get the jab. From care homes to cathedrals and museums to

stadiums, photojournalists Jude Palmer, Glenn Edward and Liam McBurney are touring the UK over the past few months capturing intimate moments during the monumental national effort to vaccinate the British population and end the COVID-19 pandemic. Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “These incredible photographs show the heroic efforts of thousands of vaccinators and volunteers in every corner of the UK who have given so much to protect the most vulnerable in our society against this cruel virus. “While there is much to celebrate with over 45 million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered so far, the battle is not yet over. I urge everyone to do their bit – when you get the call, get the jab.” Photographs include smiling portraits of vaccinators and volunteers, a bird’s eye view of socially distanced patients awaiting their jabs in Salisbury Cathedral, and an elderly couple holding hands at a vaccination site in Ulverston, Cumbria. Jude Palmer, photojournalist, said: “While the pandemic has been an incredibly difficult time in our history, it had to be documented. It’s been an honour to witness the incredible roll out of the life-saving vaccine first-hand and document this in a meaningful, compassionate way. “The photography project tells many genuine stories of people involved in the vaccine programme and those that have come forward to have their vaccine already – from their smiles, laughs, nerves, and sighs of relief as we get one step closer to a more normal way of life.” The government has already hit its target of offering everybody in cohorts 1 to 9 - those aged 50 and over, the clinically vulnerable and health and social care workers - and is on track to offer a jab to all adults in the UK by the end of July. Over 33.3 million people have now received a first dose of a vaccine – over 62.8% of the UK adult population – with 11.6 million receiving their second dose. This means over 21.8% of the UK adult population have now received both doses of a vaccine, – giving

Alice Tooley, 25, a Volunteer Service Co-Ordinator at refugee charity RETAS in Leeds, who is featured in the photography said: “I was invited to get the vaccine because of my frontline work with vulnerable adults. Getting the vaccine was important to me as it meant I could continue my work with asylum seekers and refugees feeling confidence that I wasn’t putting them or myself at risk of the virus.

“As younger people my age get called for theirs, I hope they jump at it the way I did so, as a collective, we all play our part in getting back to a more normal way of life.” Dr Gavin Chestnutt, 42, GP Partner at Ballycastle Medical Practice and part-time farmer, is seen vaccinating a 92 year-old man in his front garden overlooking the Rathlin Island coastline, Northern Island. He said: “It’s been a real honour to play such a central part in the vaccine roll out programme and witness people’s physical relief as they get their first and second jabs. To save elderly people travelling to the clinic through snow and frosty conditions, I’ve been travelling round on boats and by car to reach the most remote corners of Northern Ireland.

“Most overwhelming has been to see how grateful everyone has been for getting their vaccine and finally seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.” The AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines have met the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency’s strict standards of safety, effectiveness and quality. In England, approved vaccines are available from over 270 hospital hubs, 1,000 GP-led sites, 160 vaccination centres and 300 pharmacies in England. Around 98% of people live within 10 miles of a vaccination centre in England and vaccinations are taking place at sites including mosques, community centres and football stadiums.

Kitty Celebrates Her 100th Birthday During Lockdown at Fitzwilliam Care Home Celebrating birthdays in the lockdown can feel rather sad not being able to celebrate as we would like to. Fitzwilliam team have always managed to make the residents birthdays still feel very special. With Kitty turning 100 the staff knew they had to shake their capes extra hard as they wanted to make sure Kitty had the most memorable 100th Birthday ever. Kitty chose her outfit she wanted to wear for her special day and the staff had some accessories for her to wear, a crown and a sash saying 100 and Fabulous, which Kitty certainly is. To start Kitty’s perfect day, it had been arranged for an indoor visit from her son Trevor and daughter-in-law Averil, who are her two named visitors. Kitty used to live with them before coming to Fitzwilliam and misses them very much. Also, Kitty’s daughter Maureen visited using the pod method. Kitty was overwhelmed that she was able to see her family on her special day. Amy, Lifestyle Coordinator had decorated the main room with banners, balloons, flowers, and confetti. Blair, Fitzwilliam head chef had made a very large 100th

Birthday Cake. Trevor and Avril provided the sandwiches, sausage rolls, mini cakes and of course a glass or two of prosecco. The staff said it was imperative to make Kitty’s 100th Birthday special, which they certainly achieved, and it really helped spread some well-deserved cheer around Fitzwilliam House. The residents helped to make Kitty feel like a queen clapping her when she came into the prepared Birthday room and singing Happy Birthday. Kitty has lived at Fitzwilliam for 2 years and is extremely popular and a big part of Fitzwilliam family. Kitty says she loves it at Fitzwilliam and often asks can she stay indefinitely, which the staff say yes as she is part of Fitzwilliam now and everyone loves having her around. Kitty says all the carers are so friendly and that everyone looks after her impeccably. Kitty said everyone contributed to making her 100th Birthday so special and she cannot believe she was 100, the time goes so quickly. The number of cards she received and especially the one from the Queen which will be framed and placed in her room.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 19

Three Quarters Of Care Workers’ Mental Health Has Worsened During Pandemic Three quarters of care workers have experienced worsened mental health because of their work during the pandemic. A survey of more than 1,200 care workers found their mental health declined throughout the second wave, with respondents reporting it being poorer in December and January than in September and October. GMB, the care workers’ union, has warned of a looming care workers’ crisis, and has urged the Government and employers to step up and address the mental health crisis in social care. GMB’s major survey of more than 1,200 care workers conducted between December and January found that: • 75% of care workers say that their work during the Covid-19 pandemic has had a serious negative impact on their mental health • Care workers report anxiety levels are almost half as high (44% per cent higher) than all employees in the wider economy • Care workers’ mental health declined throughout the second wave: care workers reported poorer mental health in December/January than at the start of the second wave in September/October • Some groups of care workers were more likely to report poor mental health: women, disabled, residential, and care workers who were only entitled to statutory sick pay all reported lower mental health scores The new findings – reported by the BBC – should be a wake-up call for the social care sector, GMB said. The union said that poor mental health in social care was a longstanding concern. Research carried out before the pandemic found that care workers are at a significantly higher risk of dying by suicide. Worryingly, the new survey found that care workers’ mental health had declined since the summer. Survey respondents’ scores for happiness had fallen by 12% and self-reported anxiety levels had risen by 6%.

GMB said that low pay, insecure working, and inadequate sick pay were all contributing factors to poor mental health in the sector. The average care worker in England is paid £8.80 an hour and a third of care workers are employed on a zero hours contract, according to figures reported by employers. The findings are being released to mark the one year anniversary of the peak in care home residents’ deaths, after 1,300 residents died on Easter Sunday 2020 (of which 495 residents were known to have had Covid-19). GMB is campaigning for higher wages, full sick pay so care workers can afford to self-isolate, better support from employers including separate recording of mental health absences, and national funding for new mental health services for care workers including talking therapy and specialised PTSD support. Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer for care, said:“Care workers have been asked to make incredible sacrifices during the pandemic, and these sobering figures demonstrate the urgent need for better support. “Members describe having to nurse much loved residents as they died from this terrible disease, while all the while worrying about their own safety and how they were going to pay the bills. “Our care members are dedicated, compassionate professionals but everyone has their breaking point. For too many, the combined effect of poor employment conditions and the pandemic has been too much to bear. “If any good is to come out of this pandemic then it must include urgent reform of the sector. Ministers and employers need to explain how they are going to care for the people who have cared for us. “As a minimum, this must include dedicated national mental health services, a substantial increase in pay, and full sick pay cover so that care workers can afford to self-isolate when they are ill – no-one should be asked to live on £96.35 a week.”

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PAGE 20 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

Getting Fit To Boost Wellbeing In Care Residents encourage people to take up outdoor physical activity to improve their overall health and help ease pressure on the NHS. With this in mind, care providers must ensure they integrate fitness and exercise in their resident person centred care plans to support wellbeing. Here at Belvedere House, the nursing care home of maritime charity The Royal Alfred Seafarers’ Society, we know the importance of incorporating physical activity to support our residents’ overall health and help them to socialise and to live as independently as possible. We have provided nursing care to support elderly, sick or disabled seafarers, their widows and dependants since 1865 – including those living with dementia – and we have always taken a holistic approach to caring for residents with a range of unique needs.

THE GREAT OUTDOORS

Alice Mitroi, Registered Manager of Belvedere House, the nursing care home of maritime charity The Royal Alfred Seafarers’ Society, discusses the importance of fitness and exercise in supporting the emotional and physical welfare of elderly residents. Looking after our mental and physical wellbeing has never been more important, and it’s a topic that has been high on the news agenda during the pandemic as the nation is urged to stay fit and healthy. We all know that exercise can lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, some cancers, osteoarthritis, and dementia, but it also releases serotonin, endorphins, and other chemicals into our brains that help to lift our mood and is even prescribed to help treat mild cases of depression and improve mental health. Exercise is proven to help keep us all active, fit and healthy whilst also alleviating pressure on the health service for drug alternatives and reducing time spent at the doctors for minor ailments. Research shows that physical inactivity is now a close contender with smoking as one of the UK’s biggest health problems. Last summer, the government announced a £4million pilot scheme trialling “green prescriptions” to

The NHS advises that adults aged 65 and over should aim to be active every day, even if it's just light activity, and do activities that improve strength, balance and flexibility at least twice a week. Here at the Society’s nursing care home, Belvedere House, we are lucky to be situated within 14 acres of our own beautiful Surrey greenbelt countryside, so our residents are able to get outdoors for exercise and fresh air daily, dependent on the weather! Given the age of many of our residents, time outdoors is often in the form of an accompanied walk up to our North Field pond site where residents love to visit with family or care staff to bird watch or simply enjoy the beautiful flowers and surroundings. However, last year one of our 91-year-old tenants challenged himself to walk laps of our grounds for 30 days to raise funds for key workers. Inspired by Sir Captain Tom Moore, John walked 365 metres each day during his sponsored walk of 13,950km, raising more than £5,000 in donations which he put towards gifts for the home’s key worker staff. Not only did this have a positive effect on morale at the home, but it also boosted John’s health and wellbeing and demonstrated the importance of keeping fit and spending time outdoors. Care homes should take full advantage of the outdoor space around them that enables residents to stay fit and get plenty of fresh air. Our care home residents enjoy activities such as gardening, which can be a great form of exercise for those unable to participate in overly strenuous outdoor activity. Equally, there are plenty of seated exercises that can

be carried out at home, in a garden, or in a care home setting, which can help people with reduced mobility gain strength and improve posture – particularly when paired with light hand weights and resistance bands.

STRIKING A BALANCE At Belvedere House, our activities coordinators ensure that every week there are effective and varied forms of exercise scheduled for our residents, whether it’s outdoor activities like gardening or walking, group exercise classes or – firm favourites at our home –seated yoga and swing and sway exercises. Improving balance is one of the key reasons that exercise should be part of elderly residents’ care plans because having good balance reduces the chances of falls and helps older people be as independent as possible. Walking is one way of maintaining balance, along with dedicated exercises, but it is important for individuals to go at their own pace and exercise in a way that works for them. The NHS has some useful guidance including its Exercises for Older People handbook but there are plenty of resources online – from national health bodies and charities like Age UK – and many care homes like ours have experts that can identify the best forms of exercise to suit individuals’ needs. The right care plan can have a transformative effect on residents’ wellbeing, if tailored to their individual needs, which is why we work closely with our residents and their families to identify the best ways to support their health and improve their strength and mobility. We had a resident who was wheelchair-bound when he first arrived with us and was struggling with a number of health issues. Within the caring environment of the modern facilities at Belvedere House and in our specialist dementia care unit, residents and staff supported him in regaining his mobility and independence. All in all, our role as care givers is to help residents lead happy and healthy lives and remain as active and as independent as possible. It’s our duty to encourage and support residents in improving their fitness and participating in activities that will not only be enjoyable but be beneficial to their overall health and wellbeing. References: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/exercise-for-depression/ https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/exercise/physical-activity-guidelines-older-adults/ https://assets.nhs.uk/prod/documents/nhs-balance-exercise.pdf

Needham Market Care Home Manager Extends a Welcome to the Local Community as She Takes on Leadership of the Home Uvedale Hall care home in Needham Market part of Healthcare Homes is proudly announcing the appointment of its new manager; experienced care specialist, Michelle Byrd. Michelle, who lives in nearby Stowupland, is looking forward to building on the home’s reputation for delivering great care at the heart of the community.

focused on the needs of those we care and support for here; I want everyone living at Uvedale Hall to be happy and to receive care that is entirely based on their needs.

Michelle brings years of experience in specialised care to the role. Having started her career working in the learning disability sector, she moved on to roles in domiciliary and live-in care before entering the elderly care industry. She has been a registered manager for a number of years and is proud to have led a care setting to achieve an ‘outstanding’ rating by the Care Quality Commission.

“In addition, I want people living in the area to know that we are here for them if they have care needs. Now, more than ever, it’s so important that we come together as a community to support one another. There are many ways we can help, either through our team of specialists here at the home, or through our homecare division, which can provide bespoke services for people that wish to remain in their own homes. We are always happy to take calls and help anyone who may have questions relating to care needs for a loved one.

Now settled into her new role, Michelle is keen to strengthen connections with the local community and to encourage anyone who may need care and support to get in touch. Michelle explains, “I’m very proud to join such a tight-knit team here at Uvedale Hall, which is such a well-respected home. My priority is firmly

“The Uvedale team is quite exceptional and everyone has gone above and beyond to support residents and their loved ones during the pandemic. We’re a friendly yet experienced group of people so I’d encourage anyone to get in touch if there is any help we can provide.”

Understanding Your Payslip This month’s payslip is an important one if you’re 16–24 and on the National Living Wage (NLW) or National Minimum Wage (NMW). That’s because from April 1 the government increased the NLW and NMW rates for around two million eligible workers, including apprentices, in the UK. And for the first time, if you’re 23 or 24, you are eligible for the NLW rate of £8.91. Your employer should automatically pay the new rates in your next payslip after 1 April, but it is important to check your payslip to make sure you are being paid correctly. It’s a legal requirement for all workers to receive a payslip, and it is vital you understand its contents. Your payslip must: ·

Show earnings before and after any deductions

·

Include the amount of any deductions that may change each time you’re paid, for example tax and

National Insurance · Include the number of hours worked if your pay varies depending on time worked · Explain any deductions, for example repayment of a season ticket loan. Employers can choose to do this either on a payslip, or in a separate written statement, which must be sent out before the first payslip. The hourly rate for the National Minimum Wage depends on your age and whether you are an apprentice. The end of April will be the first time many workers who receive a monthly pay slip, will formally see the increase in the NMW and NLW if eligible to receive it. If you are moving from the National Minimum Wage (NMW) to National Living Wage (NLW) for the first time, this equates to 71p more per hour or roughly £1,384 more per year on a 37.5-hour week at 52 weeks a year. The NMW and NLW is a key part of the Government’s commitment to level up the UK and provide equal opportunities for all, as part of its plan to Build Back Fairer. As the economy re-opens people will be returning Workplace experts, Acas, has top three tips for young workers who are currently on the NLW or NMW : Check your next payslip after 1 April pay rise comes into effect Have an informal chat with your boss or HR department if you feel that your employer is not paying you the right minimum wage Check Acas’s website: www.acas.org.uk/nmw for further advice

QCS and Skills For Care Announce New Partnership Quality Compliance Systems (QCS), a major provider of content, guidance and support for the health and care sector, and Skills for Care, the workforce development and mem-

agreement, which formally recognises the high regard in which registered managers are held. It acknowledges the incredible breadth of skill and resourcefulness that they bring to

bership organisation for registered managers in adult social care, have joined forces to

our diverse sector. We look forward to working with QCS to ensure registered managers

strengthen the support they provide to registered managers.

and their staff have access to an even greater suite of resources.”

Between them, both organisations already offer frontline managers a suite of tailored policies, procedures, best practice content and support. However, to cement the landmark

QCS’s Director of Sales & Marketing, Simon Bunegar, added, “We’re delighted to have formed a collaborative alliance with Skills for Care. It will prove a huge benefit for the

partnership, which was signed today, any organisation joining QCS will also be offered

5,000 plus care providers who have chosen QCS. But, I think, much more than this, the

Skills for Care’s registered manager membership.

close relationship that both organisations have formed with care providers will mean that,

Georgina Turner, Skills for Care’s Director of Engagement, said, “Providing registered manager membership to new QCS providers is an exciting step in the new partnership

collectively, we can better understand and respond to the myriad of challenges that frontline leaders face. This itself, is both a significant and transformative step forward.”


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Professor Martin Green, Care England: Sector Must Continue Acceleration Towards Digital Transformation Professor Martin Green, chief executive of Care England, has warned that the care sector must continue to accelerate the technology revolution seen over the last year in order to meet rising demand in the future. Speaking at The Access Group’s Care Redefined webinar, Professor Green reiterated the role of digital transformation as one of Care England’s key strategic priorities, suggesting it could transform services in the 21st century. He said: “If we look into the future there is going to be a significant increase in the number of people needing care and if we look at the workforce we will not be able to continue to do things in the same way. The need for care is going to increase significantly and we have to use technology as a way to respond to that requirement. “The current labour intensive and bureaucratic way of doing things takes invaluable time away from carers’ most important role of providing care and it is not only unfit for purpose but it is also clearly not sustainable. “As a sector, we have to give care staff the gift of time and technology is the cornerstone to providing this greater freedom.” Reflecting on the changes that the sector has seen over recent years, Professor Green added: “Care England members that are embracing technology are seeing tangible benefits, as are the people using their services and their families. The organisations that had already embraced care planning systems, for example, were the most robust during the crisis.

“We have to see the technological revolution, which has been advanced significantly by Covid-19, continue. As we come out of the pandemic, we have to keep our foot on the accelerator because there are huge benefits to using technology. “As a sector, we have not been good at embracing the productivity challenge. If we are to get it right in the future, we have to use technology because we don’t have the financial or human resources to continue in the same way that we did.” Steve Sawyer, managing director of The Access Group’s health and social care division, added: “Digital transformation is about re-envisioning and driving change in how we operate and deliver services. That’s a management and people challenge, not just a technology challenge. This is something that is happening now, many care providers we work with have seen an exponential leap in both technology strategy and adoption. “In the last twelve months, we have seen a 24 per cent increase in the number of businesses newly investing in technology with The Access Group. When things have been tough, leaders have turned to a digital strategy to answer those challenges. “It’s not just organisations deciding to move away from paper-based systems for the first time, but also existing customers who are also investing and extending their digital solutions. Even those that were digital at the start of the pandemic have sought new opportunities to expand their capabilities to deliver a better, more efficient service and improved workforce experience For more information about Care England, visit www.careengland.org.uk For more information about The Access Group, visit www.theaccessgroup.com/care-management

Local Staff Nurse Celebrates 10 Years of Service with Wilsmere House Narinder Kang now Staff Nurse started at Barchester in April 2011 and has worked with residents and their relatives to ensure that their needs have been met over the years.

Lili Cocue General Manager of Wilsmere House said: “We’re delighted to be celebrating 10 years of loyal service with Narinder Kang.She has demonstrated her dedication and loyalty to this home and its residents year after year. I speak for all of us here at Wilsmere House when I say that I’m looking forward to many more years of working with!” Narinder Kang

Jane McFarlane, Employee Services Director at Barchester said: “I’m always pleased to hear stories about the long service of Barchester staff and am delighted Narinder Kang has achieved this milestone. It is dedication like this that ensures our residents are provided with a happy place to live.”

Wilsmere House care home is run by Barchester Healthcare, one of the UK’s largest care providers, which is committed to delivering personalised care across its care homes and hospitals. Wilsmere House provides residential care, nursing care and dementia care for 86 residents from respite care to long term stays.

A Nurse at Wilsmere House in Harrow Weald has received a prestigious 10 Year Service Award in celebration of working at Barchester Healthcare for Ten years.

Northwich Ladies Day at The Races Residents at residential and nursing care home, in Cheshire, took part in a very special Ladies Day as they watched the racing. Ladies Day dates back to 1823 and was an opportunity for the woman at Daneside Court to take part and to look like angels; sweetly divine. Many residents even made their own fascinators for the occasion.

the perfect creamy fluffy mousse with puree strawberries and whipped cream. Everyone said it tasted so good. Making the fascinators and the afternoon event watching the horse racing with the refreshments was the highlight of the day. One Resident, said, “Brilliant! Another wonderful afternoon!”

The Residents were so delighted to get creative and choose flowers as they designed their own headpieces. Everyone was eager to show them off to fellow Residents and care Colleagues too.

with each other as to who had the best fascinator.”

Everyone then celebrated the afternoon by watching some horse racing. The residents popped open the Prosecco, which was accompanied with fresh strawberries and cream,

event. It made everyone feel special.”

“Great to see all the lovely creations, I think the Residents became quite competitive “Seeing the smiles was just wonderful, and the twinkle in their eyes of enjoying the

Award-Winning Garden is Life-Changing for Local Supported Living Residents Residents at a local supported living facility are getting ready to celebrate National Gardening Week (April 27 – May 3) in their new-look garden. Ashburnham House in Talgarth provides support for people with severe and enduring mental health problems. Gardening group Grow for Talgarth approached the home last autumn to ask if any of the residents or staff would like to be involved in a project to transform their outdoor space. Les Jones, who has been a resident at the home since 2018, was

especially keen to get involved and wanted to grow more flowers and vegetables at the home. Every Wednesday, the residents of Ashburnham House and members of Grow for Talgarth came together to clear the outdoor space and make plans for the garden. COVID-19 restrictions put their meetings on hold, but the enthusiasm to complete the new outdoor space never wavered, and the staff, with the residents, worked to upcycle a bath into a small fishery pond. The resident have also grown and harvested their own vegetables – including onions, potatoes, cabbage and carrots – and enjoyed making and eating their own soup with these ingredients. Patrick Sharman, supported living manager of the Shaw healthcareoperated home, said: “We had very limited green space at Ashburnham, but with the help of Grow for Talgarth, and the hard work of a number of our colleagues – including Joanna Latham and Kate Boxhall – we have transformed our outdoor space. “The area went from dreary and overgrown to an attractive space with pollinating flowers, vegetables and a small pond. “Les is just one resident at Ashburnham who has seen great reward

from being a part of the Grow for Talgarth group – he claims it has changed his life.” A new £500 project, named after the town river and called ‘Enigmatic Edibles’, has been launched by The Wye and Usk Foundation and will be supported by the staff and residents at Ashburnham House. It aims to provide opportunities for therapeutic horticulture within the local community – including planting and growing vegetables and fruit to benefit biodiversity. The Ashburnham garden was included among other gardens across Talgarth in the 2020 national competition Cultivation Street, in the Community Garden section. The town won first prize in Wales and third in the UK. They have entered the 2021 award, as well as the RHS Wales in Bloom competition, where the Ashburnham gardens will be judged by an official award representative. Mr Sharman adds: “It’s been fantastic to see some of the residents who have extreme difficulties in motivation and communication work together to achieve the same goal, and even better to see the hard work being recognised through multiple national awards.”


PAGE 24 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

Keeping Data Safe: Local Support, National Webinar and Film Series Adult social care providers across England are invited to access local as well as national support to improve their data protection and cyber security. As part of the expanded Better Security, Better Care programme, 29 local support partners across the country are helping care providers to ensure they are storing and sharing paper and digital records safely. Most of the support partners are local care associations, though in some areas, support is led by local councils or the NHS. The main focus of the programme is to help care providers to understand the importance of data and cyber security, and complete an annual, online self-assessment using the Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT). The Toolkit shows care providers what they need to do to keep people’s information safe, and to protect their business from the risk of a data breach or a cyber attack. Data and cyber programme leads, social care commissioners, inspectors, data system suppliers and policymakers are also invited to a webinar on 12 May 2021, 3-4.30pm, on how the Better Security, Better Care programme and the DSPT support them. And, in a new series of short films, social care leaders and practitioners explain why data and cyber security matters, and how the Better Security, Better Care programme improves skills and care. Speaking about the initiative, Ian Turner, Chair of the Registered

Nursing Homes Association and member of the Better Security, Better Care Programme Board said: “Keeping data safe – and providing evidence that you are doing this – is no longer an optional extra for care providers. It’s part of our role as responsible organisations. And of course sharing information digitally with colleagues across health and care during the covid-19 pandemic has been essential to providing good care. Whether that is sharing care records within our own organisations – or connecting with GP, pharmacy or hospital records – we have to do that legally, safely and securely. “The easiest way for care providers to check that they have good data security arrangements in place is to complete the Data Security and Protection Toolkit every year. It’s comprehensive, and officially recognised by regulators and commissioners. And you don’t have to do it alone. The expanded Better Security, Better Care programme is providing free support to all care providers across England to understand data and cyber security issues, and to complete the toolkit.” When providers complete the toolkit, they can publish and share information about the standard they have reached, and how they are improving their policies, procedures and practice. This information can be shared with the Care Quality Commission, health and care commissioners, the Information Commissioner, service users and carers to demonstrate the steps they are taking to meet legal and regulatory requirements, and to keep information safe. By using the toolkit on an annual basis and reaching Standards Met care providers will also be able to access NHS patient information systems, for example, GP records and shared care records. Alex Harris, Social Care Cyber Security Assurance Policy Lead at NHSX says: “We recognise that care providers are under exceptional levels of pressure. Checking your data protection arrangements shouldn’t be an extra burden. Which is why we have set up this extensive Better Security, Better Care support programme. Most of the partners are local care associations – so they understand the needs of local providers and over the coming weeks they will be rolling a series of webinars, workshops and direct support to services in their area. “The Data Security and Protection Toolkit also supports a range of data and cyber security initiatives in the health and care sector such as

Joining Up Care. And it provides important information to regulators and commissioners about a care providers data protection arrangements.” Care providers who are using the Data Security and Protection Toolkit are already seeing the benefits. Anand Patel, Registered Manager at Belvedere Park Nursing Home, who is being supported by the West Midlands Care Association – one of the programme’s local support partners - says: “I would not be able to communicate effectively with NHS organisations without completing the Data Security and Protection Toolkit – it really opens doors. It’s comprehensive and well organised, so we didn’t have to scramble around to find out what standard or piece of legislation we needed to consider. It was all in one place. “The Toolkit also helped us to identify gaps in our arrangements – such as training for care staff on data security. While working through the toolkit was a stretch, we got great support from our local support partner, West Midlands Care Association. And now that we have done it once, it’s easy to review and republish every year, which is so important as things change so quickly in the data and digital world.” The Better Security, Better Care programme includes helplines, guides, films, template policies and procedures, as well as tailored support for large national care groups, and to local small and medium sized care providers. The national programme is provided through Digital Social Care and is available to CQC registered and non-registered care providers. The local programme is focused on CQC-registered services through a network of 29 local support partners. Find out more at: www.digitalsocialcare.co.uk/bettersecuritybettercare Book for the free national webinar: Better Security, Better Care: Collaborating on data and cyber security in social care - 12 May 2021, 34.30pm - https://tinyurl.com/ssa2adar View the films featuring care providers, local support partners, Digital Social Care, NHSX, Local Government Association and others: Better Security, Better Care films - https://tinyurl.com/3586apr2 Book to attend a webinar on How to register for the DSPT – 12 and 26 May 2021 - https://www.digitalsocialcare.co.uk/events/ Engage with us on twitter @DigiSocialCare #BetterSecurityBetterCare #DSPT

Every Day Is A School Day For Clinical Care Manager Ross

A CARE manager has been praised for his dedication and passion in going the extra mile to improve his education and training, which will transform care for residents, in particular those with dementia, and their families. Ross Bijak, Clinical Care Manager at Cramond Residence has completed a Master’s Degree in Dementia Studies and is now delivering a portfolio of training courses and techniques to other staff, residents and family members at the home.

The recent graduate from Stirling University has described how the course has given him a more in-depth understanding of dementia and new ways of thinking which will benefit those living with the condition. Alongside studying, Ross has taken it in his stride to juggle a 40+ hour working week and personal life – all while living through a pandemic. After starting out as a staff nurse at Cramond Residence in 2018, Ross was promoted to clinical care manager in December 2019, but continues to maintain an active involvement in the day-to-day care and support of residents. The 38-year-old from Fife said: “I’m not going to lie, I’m delighted to be finally graduating and feel immensely proud to be able to use my new knowledge towards something I have a strong passion for - which is my job. “This course has been an invaluable, eye-opening experience that will not only benefit me but also the wider community at the home. “Our main focus at Cramond Residence is to change perceptions of dementia and ensure all of our residents live happy, independent and fulfilling lives through a host of tailored activities put on by our lifestyle co-ordinators. “We also facilitate dementia support programmes and look to train all members of staff in dementia care– even those who may not be

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 safe-

ty 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 it will automatically activate and

providing direct care – as well as offering support and coping techniques to help family and friends. “The more people we’re able to help understand dementia, and how to interact and respond to changing needs of those living with the condition, the quicker it’ll become more manageable and less of a taboo subject.” Ross highlighted how important it is to create a collaborative environment in the home as residents needs and wants sit at the heart of everything they do. He added: “I’ve worked in residential care since 2006, and have never experienced such a forward thinking and adaptable environment such as Cramond Residence. “It’s great to see my suggestions being implemented in real time and that my passion for care can help structure the process at the home. “I’ve always had a desire for learning, especially when it is in an area I have an interest in. I’m always looking to see how I can help make our residents' lives better, so who knows where my studies will take me next!” After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology in 2004, Ross discovered his passion was caring for others and went back to university to study a Bachelor of Nursing at Edinburgh Napier in 2012. Ross has now accumulated more than 15 years of experience in the sector.

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 www.safelincs.co.uk/dorgards.


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Building a Stronger Community Through Technology by Steve Sawyer, Managing Director of Access Health and Social Care (www.theaccessgroup.com)

Technology is providing new ways of staying in touch throughout the pandemic. We have seen it go from something we used when needed, to depending on it. In fact, a recent report by OFCOM recorded that from September 2019 to April 2020, Zoom experienced huge growth, from 659,000 to 13 million adults connecting virtually. For carers and residents, the use of technology became a saving grace. At a time when visits from family and friends were not permitted, effective communications have never been more important. Having to shield, we have seen residents face a tough time with their mental health but also their physical health. Worryingly, Age UK found that one in three older people agree that their anxiety is now worse than before the start of the pandemic and a large proportion of over 70s have experienced depression.

It’s an understatement to say COVID-19 has had an overwhelming impact on the way we operate our daily lives, in particular within the care sector. We’ve read stories about staff working flat-out to deliver high standards of care and vulnerable people being isolated from their families. A year later, with restrictions easing the impacts are still very much there. Despite the challenges faced, there were still moments to remember that built resilience and a tighter knit community for residents and carers.

The use of technology may have relieved some of these factors. In many cases for the first time, we have seen members of the older generation embracing video calls, using online entertainment to keep their mind stimulated and getting their daily exercise from virtual classes. Bruce Daisley, best-selling author and a technology leader recently spoke at the Access All Areas Spring 21 virtual conference detailing the opportunities this new digital age can bring. “Technology is a really important part of our world right now and brings a sense of being connected with each other. “COVID-19 challenged our identity, but technology brings empathy and allows us to feel as if others are on our side.”

Overwhelmingly, the benefits of introducing technology into the care sector have been big. The NHS sent out up to 11,000 iPad tablets to care homes across the UK, realising the importance of supporting residents and staff. Not only did this allow them to connect with loved ones and keep on top of their doctor appointments but it also gave them time to reminisce and create opportunities for conversation. Whether that would be re-connecting with their hobbies, passions or going down memory lane with classic movies. Care providers are going one step further and using digital technology to improve the lives of millions of residents. For example, a next-ofkin app, supported by a care management system, enables carers to manage their booking times as well as giving access to family members allowing them to view key information about their loved one’s health and wellbeing. Throughout lockdown this has helped to keep families connected and now that restrictions are easing it is alleviating bottlenecks and the influx of calls from family members by keeping them in the loop. Overall, combining technology with the care sector has been a tremendous and promising step in the right direction. Online tools can ensure we are prepared for whatever is around the corner, guaranteeing we can continue connecting with the outside world and making sure our identity isn’t lost along the way. To listen to Bruce Daisley on demand session, go to: https://accessallareas.theaccessgroup.com/talks/the-futurework-opportunity-for-the-rest-of-us/

Women with Learning Disabilities Urged To Make Their Voices Heard To Improve Healthcare Women with learning disabilities are being urged to respond to the call for evidence which will shape the first ever governmentled Women’s Health Strategy to improve health and wellbeing and ensure health services are meeting the needs of women. An easy read version of the call for evidence has been launched today with the aim of encouraging more women with learning disabilities to share their experiences of the health and care system. There are approximately 1.2 million people with a learning disability in England, many of whom experience health inequalities as a result of their condition as well as having common associated health conditions including mental health problems, dementia, epilepsy, and being underweight or overweight. On average women with a learning disability die 27 years earlier than those without. Some examples of other health inequalities include, in 2019/20, just 33.6% of eligible women with a learning disability had an adequate smear test, compared to 68% without a learning disability, and only half of eligible women with a learning disability had been screened for breast cancer, compared to 65% of eligible patients without a learning disability[1]. Minister for Care, Helen Whately said: “The healthcare system needs to work for everyone, including and especially for those who perhaps need that bit of extra support in life. “We know people with learning disabilities have a shorter life expectancy than the general population, and this is especially true for women. I want to make sure we address the inequalities which exist within society and by making this call for evidence more accessible we are opening up the possibilities for more voices to be heard. “I would urge all women to come forward and share their experience and contribute to the Women’s Health Strategy to help shape a health and care system that works for us all.” By better understanding women’s experiences, the government can ensure key parts of the health service are meeting women’s needs as they should be. The easy read format was created to help people with learning disabilities understand information easily. Easy read is often also preferred by readers without learning disabilities, as it gives the essential information on a topic without a lot of background information. It can be especially helpful for people who

are not fluent in English. Ciara Lawrence, who has a learning disability and is the Big Plan Engagement Lead at the learning disability charity Mencap, said: “Women with a learning disability die 27 years younger than other women. This isn’t right and more needs to be done to find out what is going wrong. I’m 41 years old and I feel lucky to have made it this far. “Having accessible information means the world to people with a learning disability and helps us be a part of society. It’s great that this consultation is in easy read. The Government now must listen to what women with a learning disability say and make sure that the new plan gets it right for them. “I encourage other women with a learning disability to participate in the Women’s Health Strategy. It is very important that we have our voices heard because we have rights like anyone else. I want women to be treated equally and have access to good healthcare. If we come together and raise our issues, we can change our lives for the better.” Patricia Charlesworth, Learning Disability England spokesperson and self advocate said: "We welcome the accessible information that will make it easier for women with learning disabilities to take part. Women with learning disabilities die often preventable, deaths up to 27 years sooner than the general population. It is important that our voice is heard and action is taken to stop us dying before our time." People who live with and care for women, organisations with experience of providing services for women and those with an expertise in women’s health are also encouraged to share their views.

The six core-themes included in the call for evidence are: Placing women’s voices at the centre of their health and care: How the health and care system engages with and listens to women at the individual level as well as at the system level. Improving the quality and accessibility of information and education on women’s health: Women having access to high quality information when they need to make a decision, increasing health literacy, as well as increasing awareness and understanding of women’s health conditions among clinicians. Ensuring the health and care system understands and is responsive to women’s health and care needs across the life course: Supporting women to maximise their health across their lives, and ensuring services are designed to maximise benefits for women. Maximising women’s health in the workplace: Deepening our understanding of how women’s health issues can affect their workforce participation and outcomes, both with regards to femalespecific issues such as the menopause, but also conditions that are more prevalent in women such as musculoskeletal conditions, depression or anxiety.

Ensuring research, evidence and data support improvements in women’s health: Inclusion of women and women’s health in research and data collection and how that information is used, and driving participation in clinical trials to support improvements in women’s health Understanding and responding to the impacts of Covid-19 on women’s health: Supporting women through the unique challenges they’ve faced during the pandemic There is strong evidence of the need for greater focus on women’s health: Although female life expectancy is higher than men in the UK, women on average spend less of their life in good health compared with men. Female life expectancy in this country has been improving more slowly than male life expectancy since the 1980s Less is known about conditions that only affect women, including common gynaecological conditions which can have severe impacts on health and wellbeing, but for which there is currently little treatment. A key example of this is endometriosis with the average time for a woman to receive a diagnosis being 7 to 8 years, and with 40% of women needing 10 or more GP appointments before being referred to a specialist There is also evidence that the impact of female-specific health conditions such as heavy menstrual bleeding, endometriosis, pregnancy-related issues and the menopause on women’s lives is overlooked. This includes the effect they can have on women’s workforce participation, productivity, and outcomes High-quality research and evidence is essential to delivering improvements in women’s health, yet studies suggest gender biases in clinical trials and research are contributing to worse health outcomes for women. Although women make up 51% of the population, there is less evidence and data on how conditions affect women differently. A University of Leeds study showed women with a total blockage of a coronary artery were 59% more likely to be misdiagnosed than men, and found that UK women had more than double the rate of death in the 30 days following heart attack compared with men. Women also face varying health issues over the course of their life. The biggest cause of death for women ranges, from suicide in adolescence, to breast cancer in middle age, and dementia in older age, all of which lead to different interactions with the health service. Women of all ages and backgrounds are being urged to respond to the call for evidence in order to capture the varying health issues women experience over their lives and the significant differences between women in terms of access to services, experience of services and health outcomes.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 27

Care Home Open Week Set to Virtually Reunite Isolated Residents with Local Communities This year’s Care Home Open Week is set to take place from the 28th June – 4th July 2021. The event encourages care homes across the country to create a fun event that helps to showcase what goes on in the UK’s many fantastic care homes. This year’s event will be adapted with a range of virtual activities to ensure that it is COVID secure, with care home and community safety paramount. Run by Championing Social Care, a volunteer-led organisation that aims to shine a light on the social care sector, this year’s event is being sponsored by Civitas Investment Management (https://www.civitasim.com/) and Virgin Money (https://uk.virginmoney.com/). The support and generosity of the organisations will enable the event to reach more care homes than ever at the time they have sadly struggled to remain in touch with their communities. Mitesh Dhanak, Founder of Precious Homes and part of the organising committee for the event, commented: “The open week event is

designed to enrich the lives of care home residents and local communities by reminding people that their local care homes are home to unique, intelligent and charming characters, and run by special people that do care. Sadly, the pandemic has made it difficult for care homes to remain at the heart of their communities, which has been frustrating and in many cases devastating for residents, family members and care providers. As planning moves for Care Home Open Week, the top priority is, of course, to keep everyone safe.” Care Home Open Week allows care homes to showcase what they have to offer, promoting facilities, activities and services. This year’s event is also an opportunity to celebrate and thank the incredible care workers who have remained on the frontline throughout the pandemic, as well as giving individuals considering a career in the sector a firsthand opportunity to find out how rewarding working in the sector can be. Andrew Dawber, Group Director of Civitas Investment Management: “We are delighted to be involved in Care Home Week supporting the social care sector in its on-going pursuit to enrich the lives of care home residents and vulnerable people. At Civitas we believe everyone should feel they are a supported and included member of their local community. We are honoured to assist Care Home Open Week in

reaching more care homes and vulnerable people connecting them to their community, especially throughout the challenges faced by the global pandemic.” As Care Homes register and share their excitement for the event, the Championing Social Care committee is working hard to ensure that the event connects communities while creating COVID secure activities for care teams and their residents across the UK. This might be starting a pen pal scheme with a local school or arranging delivery of flowers to your local support service the possibilities are endless. Derek Breingan, Head of Health & Social Care at Virgin Money: ‘‘Never has the role of social care in our communities been highlighted more than the work and dedication of those working in and supporting our loved ones within care homes in the last 12 months across the country. I am really pleased that we at Virgin Money can, in sponsoring this week, help to promote all that is good, positive and inspiring in our vital social care sector.’’ Care homes can register their event today via the Championing Social Care website [https://championingsocialcare.org.uk/]. Those who register will receive an event pack as well as regular tips, updates and ideas. An event map of participating care homes will also be available online.

Fitness and Wellbeing Focus Gets Care Home Residents Buzzing Care home residents have extended a week’s dedicated celebration of fitness and wellbeing into a full month of reinvigoration. Several Colten Care homes participated in the national Bee Active week which included ideas and suggestions for staying healthy and happy. Residents and staff at Abbotts Barton in Winchester were so pleased with the benefits they have decided to continue following its recommendations through the Spring. After a suggestion by Clinical Lead Jane Shaw, team members organised a circuit training course around the garden with diagrams positioned along the way for exercising different parts of the body. Jane said: “The idea is to promote the residents’ health and wellbeing and get some fresh air in the garden too. The exercises are great for residents to strengthen muscles, prevent falls and help with their balance.” Resident Peter Winchester said: “It’s a great idea to get everyone more active in the garden. We’ve been easing ourselves into it by doing a little more each day.” As well as daily exercise, Abbotts Barton residents are singing along to playlists of favourite songs and sampling healthy snacks and smoothies. There are also health-related quizzes to help maintain mental agility

while highlighting the nutritional value of fruit and vegetables. Companionship Team Leader Kirsty Sawyer said: “We’re encouraging healthy eating and providing increased exercise opportunities for those who want to join in. “We have indoor seated exercise sessions providing gentle stretching and moving, often to music. “And residents are having great fun with activities such as quoits, basketball, yoga and tai chi. “We’ve also launched a hands-on baking club offering discussions about healthy foods and of course opportunities to taste the end product.” Other Colten Care homes to take part in Bee Active include Court Lodge and Linden House in Lymington. At Court Lodge, staff and residents completed 99 laps of the garden in recognition of the home’s oldest resident, 99-year-old Ann Melrose. She started various participants off by walking the first lap of the 20km/12-mile challenge, joining again for the final lap. Putting a further buzz into the walk were Companionship Team Members Cat Loubser and Julia Puia who dressed as busy bees. Julia said: “We are completely dedicated to ensuring our residents are happy and healthy all the time but Bee Active has given us another chance to highlight and promote suggestions for fitness and wellbeing."

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

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

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


PAGE 28 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

Passive Ventilation: An Active Approach to Fresh Air By Erik Boyter, CEO, WindowMaster (www.windowmaster.com) Fortunately, passive ventilation offers specifiers an effective, sustainable way to introduce high quality, fresh air into a building. Here I would like to take the opportunity to clear up a common misconception about natural ventilation, explore its benefits and how it works, the practicalities of installation and its role on the road to a sustainable future.

PASSIVE, NOT PASSÉ

In the wake of the ongoing pandemic, architects and specifiers are engaged in holistic discussions around the design and construction of healthy buildings with low risk of disease transmission. One key area stands out: high-quality fresh air. Recognised for its long and short-term effects on buildings occupants’ health and wellbeing, indoor air quality (IAQ) can make or break a comfortable, even livable, environment. Symptoms of poor IAQ range from increased allergies, asthma issues and light-headedness to headache and grogginess, called Sick Building Syndrome. At their worst, symptoms include stress, anxiety, poor mental health and serious pulmonary and respiratory disease. In the care home setting, the risks of leaving IAQ unchecked are high, both for vulnerable residents and the staff who care for them.

Essentially, passive ventilation is the process of supplying and removing air from a space, with minimal or no mechanical aid. Unfortunately, it is often regarded as little more than manually opening and closing windows. Modern systems have evolved somewhat, able to incorporate sensors to monitor for variables inside and out, as well as integrate with most common building management software and systems. These smart controls automatically ensure rooms are supplied with the appropriate amount of ventilation for a healthy indoor environment, keeping the temperature constant and at a pleasant level. This also removes the need for constant manual adjustment.

FEELING FRESH A 2020 Harvard study of over 3,000 workers across 40 buildings found 57% of total sick leave could be attributed to poor IAQ. A different study of the impact of IAQ in schools revealed a positive correlation between student absence and increased CO2 concentration levels. It’s not difficult to extrapolate the implications for care homes, where staff play a vital role and residents don’t have the option to go home somewhere else at the end of the day. Compared to pure play mechanical systems, natural ventilation is associated with lower incidences of fatigue, headaches, throat irritation and concentration problems.

A STUDY IN GREEN

In line with the government’s, and NHS’s, drive towards Net Zero 2050, we’re likely to see passive ventilation systems become the norm in care homes, and the wider built environment, as opposed to the exception. It’s a key component towards reducing reliance on carbon-intensive mechanical ventilation systems, one integral piece of a much larger green puzzle. Going further, where care homes are designed with ecofriendly building techniques, such as low-energy lighting and a ‘fabric first’ approach, the impact of passive ventilation systems can be amplified to help facilities managers achieve optimal building performance. It would be short-sighted to suggest that a solely passive approach is the only way forward. The best solutions are situation specific, taking location, design and purpose into account. This may sometimes mean a hybrid approach is most appropriate, which can, in fact, prove to be even more efficient than a purely natural solution.

THE WAY FORWARD Facilities managers need to understand the benefits of and feel empowered to engage with new ventilation strategies. While they may be carbon intensive, many of the most popular HVAC systems are those that people know, and are comfortable with. Many care homes may require re-engineering to integrate passive ventilation systems. Fortunately, retrofitting PV is relatively low impact depending on the windows and vents already present. Even where new windows are needed, the disruption is low compared to installing a whole mechanical system. Ultimately, there are real benefits which will be quickly registered and make the change worthwhile. Not only will care homes see a marked improvement in resident wellbeing, but also a happier, more focused staff, as well as a more sustainable outlook for the future.

HC-One’s ‘Wednesday Wisdom’ Prize-Winner Selected Christmas, money, romance and Valentine’s Day, as well as the secret to long life. Each week, the best pieces of wisdom have been shared across HCOne’s social media channels, along with a photo or video of the Resident who the wisdom originates from. There is also an element of competition, with an opportunity for Residents to win a prize every six months. Each month, the best entry is chosen, and then an overall winner is chosen from the best entries from the previous six months. The other five shortlisted Residents and their wise words were:

DECEMBER’S THEME: CHRISTMAS Resident Christopher Park from Swallownest Care Home, Sheffield in South Yorkshire, who commented, “Make the most of every Christmas as these memories stay with you forever.”

FEBRUARY’S THEME: ROMANCE AND VALENTINE’S DAY Resident Violet from Ailsa Craig Care Home, Cessnock in Glasgow, who responded with, “Work at things together and communicate!”

OCTOBER’S THEME: FRIENDSHIP Resident Alice Emamalie from Aston House Care Home, Hayes in Middlesex, who said, “The best friends you can have are those you can trust, trust is an important part of friendship! A friend that stands by you through the tough times. There’s friends of silver and friends of gold but the best friends of all are those of old.”

Margaret, a Resident from Chaseview Care Home in Burntwood, Staffordshire, has won HC-One’s ‘Wednesday Wisdom’ initiative for sharing her wise words, The ‘Wednesday Wisdom’ initiative encourages Residents to share their insight, secrets, inspiration and wise words of wisdom across a variety of topics. Margaret shared her advice on November’s theme of ‘marriage’ in which she stated, “make sure you outlive the other!” She was selected as the winner for her humorous answer which received a lot of laughs and online engagement. Margaret had a choice of prizes and selected a colouring book and watercolour pencils. Margaret is looking forward to getting creative and showing off her artistic talents by colouring in the variety of illustrations. Each month a specific theme is promoted for ‘Wednesday Wisdom’ and so far, Residents have thoroughly enjoyed sharing their knowledge on various subjects including friendship, marriage,

JANUARY’S THEME: MONEY Resident Mary MacIntyre from Kintyre Care Home, Campbeltown in Argyll and Bute, who remarked, “Always save for a rainy day and never spend more than you need to!”

MARCH’S THEME: THE SECRET TO LONG LIFE Resident Rita from St Christopher's Care Home, Hatfield in Hertfordshire, who mentioned, “The secret to a long life is friends, if you fall they pick you up and that’s what matters!” HC-One plans to continue the ‘Wednesday Wisdom’ initiative, with the next six months themes including pets, education and careers, food and drink, exercise and keeping healthy, neighbours and your local community, as well as confidence and loving yourself. The best pieces of advice will be posted every Wednesday throughout the month across HC-One’s social media channels. HC-One looks forward to choosing and announcing another winner in six months’ time.

Alzheimer’s Society Calling On Care Workers To Share Experiences Alzheimer’s Society is asking professional care workers to complete a short set of questions to find out the barriers and challenges they face in caring for people with dementia.

social care system that provides quality care for every person with dementia who needs it. Fiona Carragher, Director of Research and Influencing at Alzheimer’s

“After a harrowing fifteen months, which has laid bare the dire state of social care for all to see, transforming dementia care must be the legacy of the pandemic.

To take part in the survey, please follow the online survey link

Society said, “Professional care workers are unsung heroes that make a

“To do this successfully, we need your help and opinions to make

Using the anonymous results of this survey, Alzheimer’s Society will

huge difference in the lives of many people with dementia, but chronic

sure we’re prioritising the most urgent issues affecting care profession-

underfunding of social care puts care workers under unimaginable strain.

als today.”

work with the Government to create meaningful change and a universal


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 29

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL

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

Skin health and surface hygiene expert, GOJO Industries-Europe, is proud to be part of the global movement to improve hand hygiene and is once again supporting the World Health Organization’s annual ‘SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands’ campaign. Its worldwide advocacy day falls on 5th May, and this year it is focused on achieving appropriate hand hygiene action at the point of care. Its ‘seconds save lives – clean your hands!’ slogan reinforces the message that taking a little extra time to practise hand hygiene makes all the difference. To achieve this, healthcare workers should have access to 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 www.gojo.com/WHO-May-5 from mid-April. Free advocacy toolkits to support the WHO Save Lives: Clean Your Hands campaign are available on the WHO website: http://www.who.int/infection-prevention/campaigns/clean-hands/en/ WHO invites everyone to use the hashtags #CleanYourHands #HandHygiene #InfectionPrevention on social media to ensure Save Lives: Clean Your Hands posts are picked up by the campaign. For more information, call +44 (0)1908 588444, email infouk@GOJO.com or visit www.GOJO.com

Fellowes Aeramax Pro Air Purifiers Certified to Remove 99.9% of Airborne Coronavirus and H1N1 Flu Leading commercial air purification manufacturer, Fellowes, is pleased to announce its AeraMax Pro air purifiers have shown a 99.99% airborne reduction of a coronavirus surrogate within 60 minutes of operation.

tified by Airmid Health Group Limited in Dublin, Ireland. When installed in a care home environment, AeraMax Pro therefore offers outstanding protection against the transmission of coronavirus 229E and the H1N1 virus between staff, visitors and vulnerable residents.

With the recent, intensified focus on the reduction of airborne transmission of viruses, a number of worldwide bodies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ASHRAE, as well as ‘healthy building’ scientific advocates, have recommended that portable air cleaners using HEPA filtration can help in the protection against SARS-Cov-2. This is particularly key for settings such as care homes, where occupants have an increased level of vulnerability to the spread of disease and therefore require this additional protection.

Dr. Rajiv Sahay, Director of Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory at Pure Air Control Services based in Clearwater, Florida commented: “These latest test results on the Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifiers provided by an independent third-party accredited (ISO/IEC 17025) laboratory are significant. I continue to be impressed with the findings on the efficacy of this technology/device by Fellowes. Typically, singlestrand RNA envelope viruses (e.g. common cold coronavirus 229E, etc.) are used as a surrogate for SARS-CoV-2 to study the antiviral effect of a specific device.”

In response to this, air purification expert, Fellowes recently arranged for its AeraMax Pro purifier, which has a four-stage TRUE HEPA filtration system, to be independently tested for efficacy in the reduction of two of the most health-threatening airborne-transmitted contaminants seen in recent times – coronavirus and the H1N1 virus. Certified by Shanghai WEIPU Chemical Technology Service Company, Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifiers demonstrated effectiveness in reducing the aerosolised airborne concentration of Human Coronavirus 229E in a test chamber, reaching 99.99% airborne reduc-

tion within one hour of operation. As it is not yet possible, or ethically responsible to aerosolise Sars-CoV-2 for airborne testing in the current climate, the coronavirus 229E was used as a surrogate to Sars-CoV-2.

Fellowes Brands Global CEO, John Fellowes concluded: “Our company is proud to be of service to many businesses, schools, professional arenas and stadiums, and the fragile healthcare population’s reopening stories. While we’ve been providing health and wellness solutions to workplaces for years, our air purification business is among our most meaningful commitments to workplace health ever in our history.”

Furthermore, AeraMax Pro air purifiers have also been proven to remove 99.9% of the H1N1 virus within 35 minutes of operation, as cer-

For more information about Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifiers, visit www.aeramaxpro.com/uk

Keeping Care Homes Clean: Practical Advice for Preventing Infections By Professor Neil Bacon, Medical Director of GermErase and CEO of JVS Health (www.germerase.com) For care homes across the country, the Covid-19 pandemic gave “cleanliness” a new meaning. While hygiene has always been a priority - vital in ensuring that residents are both comfortable and well protected against infections - Coronavirus has given it a newfound importance. As the Covid-19 infection rate continues to decline and more and more healthcare workers are vaccinated, we now face a pivotal moment in determining practices going forward. Will we continue to follow the “hands, face, space” mantra, or simply go back to the way we were working before? Looking forward, it is clear that it would be a missed opportunity to revert to old hygiene standards - and not just due to the lingering threat of a coronavirus resurgence. Across the globe, the risks posed by superbugs, antibiotic resistance and future pandemics is growing, and we must ensure that the hygiene practices implemented during the past year due to COVID remain in place in order to minimise risks of new, potent infections. For care homes, maintaining scrupulous levels of hygiene does not need to be an additional source of stress on already pressured and busy carers . A few simple steps can ensure that residents have protection from infections, even those which pose as large a threat as COVID.

CHOOSE THE MOST EFFECTIVE SANITISER, AND ENSURE THAT IT IS SAFE Over the past year sanitising hands has become a regular part of our daily routines. Care homes have encouraged the use of sanitisers amongst both staff and, when permitted, visitors, in order to prevent Covid transmission through contact. Regular sanitising will be just as vital in protecting against infections in the future. However, staff must carefully consider the sanitisers used in the care home setting order to keep vulnerable residents as safe as possible. The standard alcohol-based sanitisers widely used in care homes hold a number of risks when used by vulnerable residents. Not only can they exacerbate skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, but if accidentally ingested they can cause alcohol poisoning resulting in serious illness. During the pandemic cases of alcohol poisoning due to hand sanitiser have increased dramatically, particularly amongst children and older people. A lower-risk option for care homes is ultra-low toxicity, non-alcohol based sanitisers. These carry fewer risks, meaning that staff can keep sanitisers in accessible spaces without worrying about residents. This also promotes more frequent use of sanitiser, increasingly high cleanliness standards and efficacy of hygiene practices.

DISINFECTING SURFACES WITH PROTECTIVE DISINFECTANTS Staff must also consider the disinfectants used on surfaces in care home settings. Opting for a disinfectant with the highest efficacy possible against the broadest range of microbes will ensure protection against the widest range of infections, whether transmitted through

droplets, spores or blood. Looking at the percentage of micro-organisms killed by a disinfectant is one good indicator of its efficacy. Although a disinfectant killing 99.9% of microbes may sound highly effective, it is vital to remember that one eliminating 99.9999% of microbes has 1000x higher efficacy. Care home managers should also look for protective disinfectants, which not only kill the pathogens on a surface at the time of application but continue to kill those that come into contact with the surface for a specified period afterwards. This is particularly important for communal spaces such as reception desks or dining tables, which may be coming into regular contact with different people, and so would need to be disinfected with a traditional disinfectant more regularly than possible in order to best protect against bacteria and viruses.

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCE & VENTILATE SPACES WHERE POSSIBLE The phrase ‘social distancing’ has become synonymous with Coronavirus, but social distancing and mask-wearing do not only reduce the transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, they can also give protection against airborne infections such as TB and MRSA. Even when social distancing and mask-wearing are no longer legal requirements, care homes should continue to consider ways to limit physical contact between staff, visitors and vulnerable residents, so far as this is possible without affecting the mental health of staff, residents and visitors.


PAGE 30 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL CleanRite, Proves Efficacy of Hypochlorous Against SARS-CoV-2 to Offer New Generation of Alcohol-Free Sanitisers Launching in the UK CleanRite sanitisers, a new dermatologically advanced solution to keeping surfaces and hands guarded against COVID-19 is launching in the UK in April 2021. CleanRite is a new generation disinfectant range to ensure surfaces, the air in areas such as care homes, as well as hands - are all protected from the SARS-CoV2 virus.

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

environment makes CleanRite ideal for long-term usage.”

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

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

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: https://jla.com/knowledge/icir-2021-care

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 MediInn 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 www.medi-inn.co.uk and ASAP Innovations at www.whyasapco.uk


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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: https://tcfm.online/return-to-work-safely-with-covid19-decontamination-cleans/ or contact Nicola Heywood directly on: 07920 539 265


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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 www.angloplas.co.uk 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 staysafe@purazine.co.uk or telephone 03300 880660 or visit www.purazine.co.uk


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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: www.reaction-grp.com 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 info@haigh.co.uk


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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 35

CATERING FOR CARE

Nightingale Hammerson’s Approach To Good Nutrition and Hydration mealtime observation tool: the Dementia Mealtime Assessment Tool (DMAT), specifically designed by a dietitian.

in the wider care team, which enables us to maintain the best interests of the resident.

We trialled the DMAT and selected several residents living with dementia and who were identified as having some mealtime difficulties. The in-house dietitian and OT team spent time observing the residents while eating, allowing us to identify specific problems. We were then able to select interventions and generate a person centred care plan to support eating and behaviours at mealtimes. It also provided access to practical, evidenced based, assessments and interventions. When implemented, this also helped to empower the carer and reduce anxiety associated with mealtimes.

‘MEALTIMES MATTER’

These observations and interventions have had a beneficial effect on the overall mealtime experience and have gone a long way to help maintain good health, independence and dignity of our residents.

INTRODUCTION

IN-HOUSE DIETITIAN

Malnutrition affects 3 million people in the UK and accounts for 35% of care home admissions. Eating and drinking is an important part of residents’ wellbeing and a basic foundation for their good health. We take nutrition and hydration seriously, not only for good health but also because of the enjoyment and social benefits that mealtimes bring. Weight maintenance, nutritional status and adequate hydration, without medical intervention, depends on a person’s ability to eat and drink. Therefore, identifying nutritional risk as early as possible is an important aspect of our nutrition and hydration care.

Crucially, because our dietitian is based within our home, it means that if a care team is concerned about a resident, they can be called upon the same day. An assessment is immediately then carried out, often followed by a mealtime observation, and measures are quickly put in place to rectify difficulties. Being in-house also ensures regular and clear communications between teams and the ability to make changes quickly, should the original measures need changing. It also allows a resident’s care plan to be immediately updated and interventions put in place.

WHY REGULAR MONITORING IS IMPORTANT Maintaining residents’ independence with eating and drinking is hugely important. This requires close monitoring of residents if they begin to display any difficulties. To monitor our residents, we use a

Working closely with the catering team, the dietitian manages specific diets, meal planning, nutritional intervention, prescribing textured food, providing additional nourishing drinks and snacks or oral nutritional supplements. Regular interventions and discussions take place with-

The dietitian also covers nutritional training for the wider care teams and volunteers who support our ‘mealtimes matter’ programme. They will sit with a resident through the duration of a meal and help with eating and drinking. This is a hugely important element to ensure residents have time with one-to-one assistance during their meal. The environment is calm and the meal is not rushed. Feedback to the care team ensures they know if a resident has eaten and drunk enough during a mealtime. If this is not the case, measures are taken to ensure the resident is provided with additional food and drink a little later.

TEAMWORK A great amount of teamwork is involved when overseeing residents’ nutritional and hydration requirements. The benefit of having a dietitian and OT team permanently based within our homes, allowing for precise monitoring and intervention, has seen great success within the mealtime environment. In fact, it is a crucial part of succeeding in helping residents to maintain and even improve their nutrition and hydration status. Having an in-house dietitian and OT team not only benefits our residents. Our care teams value their support and advice, as it is clear this can really enhance a resident’s experience during mealtimes. The aim of our dietitian’s work is to ensure residents are able to eat and drink the right amount of nutritional food to ensure their good health. However, by supporting independence with eating and drinking, residents can enjoy mealtimes. Consequently, this has significant benefits for overall wellbeing.

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 ufs.com/knorrprofessional to find out more

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

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 (www.allmanhall.co.uk) 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 www.allmanhall.co.uk See the advert on the facing page for details.


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LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS

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 info@forbes-professional.co.uk www.forbespro.co.uk

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.


PAGE 40 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

MEDICATION MANAGEMENT

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 www.omnicell.co.uk/products/emar

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 www.atlasemar.com 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 www.well.co.uk/carehomes For more information about PainChek® email: info@painchek.com or visit: https://painchek.com/uk/


PAGE 42 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

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

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 www.win-health.com

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 https://storytellingforsilverseniors.com or Email: info@storytellingforsilverseniors.com 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 adaptawear.com has been specifically designed with these people in mind. This unique product comes with a fully opening back, shoulder openings on both sides, and easy poppers, which fasten quickly with limited effort. As the nightgown opens up completely flat, it can be put on from a lying or seated position, ensuring less stress for both the wearer and carer. The open back function with a generous overlap also ensures dignity when toileting and a quick drying cotton fabric is

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

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 www.tekihealth.com 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 www.yeomanshield.com for details.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 43

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Reliant Care Solutions Ltd WHY SHOULD CARE HOMES MOVE FROM PAPER TO ELECTRONIC TIME SHEETS

The industry is under considerable financial pressures. An efficient electronic booking on/off system that will schedule, provide budgets, calculate hours worked, overtime and absence such as sickness and holiday entitlement will save Time and Money.

HOW IS TIME AND MONEY SAVED BY DOING THINGS ELECTRONICALLY?

Collecting payroll information from paper timesheets can be slow, prone to errors, and very labour intensive. Staff rosters can be produced as far in advance as practical and accurate within budgeted hours. Staff book on and off-duty electronically, thus eliminating any time errors. Wage queries are virtually eliminated and immediate checks can be made without wading through reams of paper which invariably are inaccurate, misfiled or even 'lost".

THERE ARE MANY SYSTEMS ON THE MARKET WHY FACIAL RECOGNITION IS IMPORTANT AND HOW IT WORKS

Some systems use tokens, which can be lost or left at home, requiring management involvement in the booking on/off procedure. Fingerprint systems can be beaten and Social media is awash with ways to copy fingerprints. Face recognition combined with a staff PIN is simple to use and manage using touch screen technology and web cams. Staff see their image displayed immediately when booking on or off and confirms their identity visually. It provides the best deterrent available as it builds a greater 'image knowledge’ of each employee, a picture is worth a thousand words. Eliminates 'buddy punching' where employees can book colleagues on/off duty using someone’s tokens, swipe card or even fingerprint.

HOW IS DATA PROTECTED? With the correct security setup computer systems provide more data protection than paper-based records which can be easily removed or stolen. GDPR covers all data including paper records and therefore the chances of infringing the rules and incurring fines is greater with paper. For further information visit www.rcscare.net or call 03333 444 562.

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

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

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.

www.pinpointlimited.com


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 45

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 www.inspiredinspirations.com 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 www.carecontrolsystems.co.uk 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 info@care-vision.co.uk or call 0208 768 9809


PAGE 46 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

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 lctuk.com 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 www.easylinkuk.co.uk/mpcsa11 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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 47

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION

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

clarification processes concluding with written 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 www.nursecallsystems.co.uk 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.” www.edisontelecom.co.uk

NURSE CALL

IT’S NOT OBSOLETE UNTIL THE OPERA LADY SINGS

EDISON TELECOM LTD (IN BUSINESS SINCE 1984)

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

Call us on 01252-330220 We can give most systems a new lease of life and maintain them into the future.

www.edisontelecom.co.uk Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.

www.nursecallsystems.co.uk


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51 | PAGE 49

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 (www.lcgonline.co.uk/carermag-skillsguarantee) 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 info@lasersys.co.uk 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: www.dementiaworkshop.co.uk - We accept NHS purchase order numbers and care home accounts. Phone Gillian direct on: 07971-953620 or see the advert on page 1.


PAGE 50 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 51

TRAINING & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Looking For Finance For Your Business? Find Out What Your Main Options Are! “Many smaller businesses rely on established relationships when considering finance options” – this is a direct quote from a recent report from the British Business Bank, which states that 75% of SMEs only considered one finance provider in the last year.   That is great if you have a relationship with a lender who can provide your business with the right finance – but not so useful if you don’t.   Many small businesses are not always aware of the different options that could be available to them, and therefore can miss out on finding the right finance – simply because of this information gap.  The commercial finance market is extensive, and some products are not always easy to understand, but knowing what type of products are available is a first step to accessing them. We set out some of the key options below:  Working Capital Loans: You have heard the saying – “Cash is King”. A

By Johan Da Silva, ASC Finance for Business (www.asc.co.uk) business needs working capital to operate, whether it is for growth, or simply to pay for stock, wages, or other expenses. Working Capital Loans advantage is that they can be drawn down quickly.   are useful when looking to improve immediate cash flow and can be proInvoice Discounting: Invoice discounting is a specific type of finance vided on a secured or unsecured basis.  which helps businesses with their cashflow. The business effectively sells Secured or Unsecured Business Loans: A secured loan will have your an invoice to the lender, to get their payment up front. The lender is then property (or building, equipment, or anything high value) as a security in repaid once the business receives their income from their customer. This case you are not able to keep up with the repayments. Unsecured loans form of finance can be particularly useful for businesses whose clients are similar but riskier for the lender as there is nothing to back up your loan have long payment terms.  repayments. Many business loans are unsecured, but to ask for higher Asset Finance: Helps businesses acquire an asset and spread the cost amounts it is generally required to have a ‘security’.  over time. Asset finance can also free up valuable working capital.  Overdrafts: Some lenders can provide a business with an overdraft facilPeer-2-Peer: P2P Finance is a newer way of raising capital. Instead of ity. The limit is often reviewed every year and it has a pre-agreed interest borrowing money form a single lender, the business effectively takes out rate. Businesses will be charged only on the amount they use.  multiple small loans from lots of individuals – the provider simply ties all Commercial Mortgages: A commercial mortgage is similar to any other the loans together.  It is a way of accessing finance without the need of mortgage but targeted to commercial purposes. It can be possible to a traditional bank.  secure lower interest rates as lenders are keen on the security provided by There are many options available to small businesses, but it is important commercial property.  to know which ones are right for you. Applying for finance can be really Bridging Loans: A bridging loan is a form of short-term finance where confusing and this is why it is important to have someone you trust working the borrower is awaiting future income (e.g. from the sale of a property, or on your side. Having a broker can help you navigate the process more easa long-term loan), but wants to access finance quickly and therefore needs ily, and there are different hurdles that having a broker can help you overto “bridge” the gap. Bridging loans can be quite expensive, but the key come.   

Workers Added To Shortage Occupation List By Kashif Majeed, Director at Aston Brooke Solicitors (www.astonbrooke.co.uk) The Social Care Sector has long called for senior care workers among other key roles to be added to the Shortage Occupation List. Aston Brooke Solicitors has worked with Care England to ensure that the Migration Advisory Committee’s recommendations are adopted by the Government. Initially, the Secretary of State refused to add the role of senior care workers to the shortage occupation list and she was faced with widespread criticism from the sector. This prompted calls from the sector to legal challenge the decision. This recent announcement means that the Government has finally recognised the voice of the sector and this important change builds on the government’s delivery of the new points-based immigration system introduced in January 2021. Minister for Future Borders and Immigration Kevin Foster said: “Every year we welcome healthcare workers from across the world to our United Kingdom, with many having played a key role on the frontline of the NHS during the recent pandemic. This latest set of changes, combined with our Health and Care Visa, will ensure they can easily get the immigration status they deserve.” Professor Martin Green OBE said: “I am pleased that the Government has acknowledged the challenges of recruiting senior care workers and residential day managers, this is something we have long called for with our partner law firm Aston Brooke Solicitors. We hope that this is the

start of a process towards the creation of a migration system which supports rather than undermines the development of the adult social care workforce”. Kashif Majeed, Director at Aston Brooke Solicitors welcomed the announcement and said: “The addition of the senior carer position to the shortage occupation list means care providers are now able to recruit suitable candidates outside of the UK on a minimum annual salary of £20,480. Prior to this announcement, the minimum annual salary payable for this role would be £25,600, which is unsustainable in the sector.” As part of the points-based immigration system, people applying to come to the UK through the skilled worker route must reach 70 ‘points’ to be eligible for a work visa. A job on the Shortage Occupation List is worth 20 points. Combined with the mandatory criteria – having an acceptable standard of English, an offer from a licensed sponsor and the required skill level, which are worth 50 points – will ensure people in these roles reach the 70 points necessary. For any further queries or to make an application for a sponsor licence, please contact Mr Kashif Majeed on km@astonbrooke.co.uk See the advert on page 17 for details.

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

BACK TO PERSON CENTRED CARE – THE IMPORTANCE OF SELFCARE

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 www.meaningfulcarematters.com/

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

ACTION LEARNING TO IMPROVE PERSON CENTRED CARE THROUGH MINDFULNESS


Profile for The Carer

The Carer Digital - Issue #51  

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

The Carer Digital - Issue #51  

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

Profile for thecarer

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