The Carer Digital - Issue #64

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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 64

Government Confirms Covid Vaccines to be Mandatory for Care Home Staff

Coronavirus vaccinations will be compulsory for all staff working in care homes in England from 11 November, unless they are medically exempt from getting the vaccination government guidance has confirmed. Ministers published new regulations on to help managers adjust to a change in the law, which applies to all people working in care homes registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Registered persons (registered managers, registered providers) will need to ensure that they do not allow anyone entry into a care home unless they have had a complete course of an authorised vaccine or fall into one of the groups

exempt from being vaccinated. As well as care home staff, anyone entering a care home, such as healthcare professionals, CQC inspectors, tradespeople, hairdressers and beauticians, must have had two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine. However, friends and relatives of the care home resident will be exempt from the regulations, as well as residents themselves, members of the emergency services and those offering bereavement support.

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EDITOR'S VIEWPOINT Welcome to the latest edition of The Carer Digital! I am sure that it will come as no surprise to those in the adult social care sector, but the government has now confirmed the compulsory vaccinations for care staff will be required from November 11th and the Department of Health and Social Care and the Care Quality Commission have now issued guidance. Once again, I would repeat that the government throughout the pandemic has found itself between a rock and a hard place. Patient safety is, at the end Editor of the day, the responsibility of health and social care institutions, and these institutions have a duty to employ only workers whose presence would not place patients at unnecessary risk. I had always thought that there would be a distinction between new frontline care staff, who would not be offered employment if they were unwilling to be vaccinated against high risk infections, but allowances/concessions made to existing employed staff, since employers have responsibilities not only for their patients but also to their staff. These include obligations of non-discrimination and ensuring reasonable working conditions. This clearly is not the case - unless it is tested in courts, of course. I think all eyes are probably on France at the moment. France began requiring the passes, which certify that somebody has been vaccinated against Covid-19, on Monday this week for people seeking to dine at a restaurant, whether indoors or outdoors. The pass is now also necessary to take domestic flights and longdistance buses and trains. France already made the pass mandatory last month for a host of other activities such as entrance to museums, pools, gyms and large sports events. It is going to be interesting to see how the French public react, which could have implications in other countries including the UK. In a recent public consultation, 47% of care home workers did not support mandatory vaccination, and, as reported last week, there are reports of staff threatening to leave rather than be vaccinated. I have always felt that to maximise uptake, mandatory vaccination should really be the last resort and only when other measures have failed. We already have highly successful vaccine programmes without the need to coerce. Introducing such a forcible practice may lead to a slippery slope that is best left untrodden!

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WEBSITE: www.thecareruk.com EDITOR Peter Adams SALES EXECUTIVES I would also like to take this opportunity to offer our sincere congratulations to Sandra McGale, Activity Coordinator from Larkfield View Care Home Greenock, and THE CARER’S latest Unsung Hero! (See page 7). Once again apologies for the delay in announcing the winner. As explained last week I went down with COVID which “knock me sideways” for a couple of weeks! We were overwhelmed, not only with the number of nominations, but again with the heartwarming and uplifting stories or staff going above and beyond their ordinary and normal duties. So much so that once again we tagged on an extra four runners up, who will be receiving Marks and Spencer vouchers. It is a small gesture on our part - no glitz, no glamour just an opportunity for homes to nominate someone they feel deserves recognition and we do the rest! Watch out this month for our next “Unsung Hero” award, where we will once again be inviting nominations! We here at THE CARER have also teamed up with employment law specialists Paris Smith Solicitors, who will be conducting a live Q & A session on the ongoing challenges the pandemic has created further details can be found here www.thecareruk.com/free-hr-and-employment-law-webinar-for-care-sectorprofessionals/

Sylvia Mawson David Bartlett Guy Stephenson TYPESETTING & DESIGN Matthew Noades PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Shelly Roche Published by


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Government Confirms Covid Vaccines to be Mandatory for Care Home Staff (CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) Detailed information about how Care Managers can prepare for and meet this change in the Regulations can be found in the DHSC operational guidance. The CQC are urging all relevant providers, managers and staff to read the guidance and take any necessary actions in order to be ready for when this duty is in place. Chief executive, Professor Martin Green said Care England will “be working tirelessly to support its members in the delivery of the policy. “The 16-week grace period for providers has begun, with the regulations coming into force on 11 November. There has been a lack of central guidance, funding and leadership in helping to support adult social care providers in implementing the regulations.”

STAFF LOSSES The mandatory vaccination policy has raised serious concerns regarding homes having to let staff go. LuxuryCare Group, which has five homes in Dorset says it is “heartbreaking” to consider terminating the employment of workers who have stayed loyal throughout the pandemic. Before considering making staff redundant government guidance

says employers should “explore all options” for redeploying those who refuse the vaccine, but cautions that “the regulations may provide a fair reason for dismissal if you are not vaccinated or medically exempt”. Speaking with local newspaper The Bournemouth Echo Mandy Kittlety, managing director at Luxurycare Group, said it was “unthinkable” and “heartbreaking” to part with staff she had worked with for a decade. “It’s a real dilemma for all of us in social care because in our hearts is this desire to make sure that everybody we care for is safe and we do know that being double vaccinated will hopefully reduce the spread of this horrendous virus.” “But on the other side of things as a company we’re really concerned about our staff team.” “The issue we’ve got is that if all of our staff are not vaccinated within the given time frame, then we are expected to dismiss them. They will be unemployable within any care home because they have not had their vaccination,” she said. “We feel that actually through a dynamic risk assessment process we

Care Homes Still Won’t be “Open all Hours” A social care leader has warned families not to expect care homes to be “open all hours” after news that visiting restrictions are being eased. Mary Wimbury, the chief executive of Care Forum Wales, welcomed the announcement by Welsh Government as a signal that life was slowly returning to something like normality. But she warned it was important to remember that care homes would still be making the safety and wellbeing of their residents the number one priority. Since 24 May, anyone has been able to arrange a visit to a care home, with two people allowed to attend at the same time. This limit has now been removed with the Welsh government saying it will be down to individual providers to determine who can visit and when. Care home residents will also be able to nominate an "essential visitor" who will be able to continue to visit them indoors, if an outbreak is confirmed - so long as they test negative.

Ms Wimbury said: “The successful rollout of the vaccine is clearly having a positive impact which is great news after the nightmare of the past 18 months. “We therefore welcome the gradual move towards normalisation and we look forward to that happening for the benefit of residents and staff alike. “There are still requirements for visitors to care homes to undertake lateral flow tests and wear PPE in order to protect vulnerable residents “Given this, the guidance recognises that care homes have practical constraints on how many visitors or how many visits they can accommodate safely. “Families will have to appreciate the balance that care homes seek between safety of the home and visiting. Visiting policies will be revised for each setting, taking into account their staffing, layout and other available resources. “It is imperative that we do not throw caution to the wind because Covid-19 has not gone away and we are still in the throes of a third

could actually deal with keeping people safe.” Kevin Gunputh, founder of the company and former chairman of the Dorset Care Homes Association, said he had heard of some care home operators where 30 per cent of staff could be affected. “Employment rights seem to be a thing of the past,” he added. The policy is expected to lead to an exodus of staff, with the government’s own best estimate suggesting that around 40,000 care home staff risk being lost as a result of the compulsory vaccinations, adding that it could cost the industry £100m to replace. A Department of Health and Social Care Spokesperson said: “Vaccines save lives and while staff and residents in care homes have been prioritised and the majority are now vaccinated, we need to do everything we can to keep reducing the risk for the most vulnerable. “Through our extensive public consultation we have listened to the experiences and concerns of providers and people living and working in care homes to help shape our approach. “We continue to work with the care sector to drive uptake among adult social care and care home staff to protect vulnerable people.” wave of the virus. “We must remain vigilant and careful because the so-called Delta variant is clearly more transmissible. “While virtually every care home resident and member of staff has now had two jabs, it is important to remember that the vaccine does not provide 100 per cent protection. “According to Professor David John Spiegelhalter, an eminent expert on understanding risk, a vaccinated 80 year old has the same risk as an unvaccinated 50 year old, so the risk has not gone away. “It is therefore important to point out that individual care homes will have to assess the risk, depending on a number of factors before deciding what type and extent of visits can go ahead. “Care homes are naturally cautious given that new insurance policies explicitly exclude cover for Covid outbreaks and unlike the NHS care homes do not have a government indemnity over this. “It would be unrealistic to expect care homes to be open all hours at this point. “The safety and wellbeing of residents and staff will always be the number one priority of care homes and that will be their guiding principle.”


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How Allotments Help Culture To Flourish

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

How do you make a house a home? It was a question that I mulled over for quite a while when I was appointed Registered Manager for a learning disability service in South Yorkshire. The memo I’d given was to transform a council house into a fully functioning, multi-purpose home for six young people with learning disabilities. The answer, of course, always lies not in the brickwork but in establishing an open and enabling culture throughout the service. That said, a strong culture shapes environments – both inside and out. Perhaps, it is fitting then that on National Allotments Week, that I tell you about the allotments created by service users and staff that have proved to be a unifying, driving force in cementing the culture at the home.

ALLOTMENTS ARE MORE THAN JUST GREEN SPACES Allotments help service users and staff form a close working bond. But much more than that, they provide a link to interact with the local community. Wherever I have gone, I have been in awe of the staff. Their understanding of those that they are supporting has never failed to amaze me. They seem to instantly know how to make service users feel happy. That isn’t by doing things for them, but by encouraging them to set their own personal goals and then supporting them to reach them. In one home, the staff and service user’s primary objectives was to work together to create an allotment that would supply the home with fresh fruit and vegetables. The problem was that the garden was tiny. It seemed far too small to house an allotment. At least that was what I thought. However, many of my staff knew the benefits and cost savings that could be achieved from growing their own produce. It was a tradition that spanned generations that they wanted to pass on. Extraordinarily, working alongside the service users, they re-modelled the lawn into a mini-working farm. How? Well, they divided the garden into three parts, created two allotments in the process. In one, they planted staples like potatoes, onions and cabbage. In the other, they erected polytunnels, which enabled them to grow strawberries, tomatoes, beans, courgettes, aubergines, peppers and even squash. At the back of the garden, they taught service users to build a chicken coop from wood and to erect a fox-proof fence. It filled my heart with joy to watch staff pass on their knowledge of the land to the service users.

ACCESSIBILITY When planning an allotment, it’s incredibly important that everyone has the opportunity to participate, to learn and to enjoy it. Accessibility is key. In the services that I have managed, I have always insisted on timber raised beds, which gave service users easy access to the vegetable and fruit, while planting, weeding or picking. With budgets tight, the staff often get by on ingenuity alone. One day, for example, one of my staff saw a

disused cooking oil tub, which was going to be recycled. He asked the rubbish collection team if he could keep it. Working with service users, after cleaning it, he put wheels on the bottom, made holes in the side and filled it with earth, compost, and seeds. The result? A mobile garden for service users who wanted to be involved in the growing process but weren’t mobile enough to walk to the garden. In services that I’ve headed, our collective philosophy was always to eat what we grew, and as service users and staff are involved at every stage in nurturing the produce from field to fork, the bond between them often becomes unbreakable. That, for me, is the litmus test when assessing whether or not a culture of engagement and enablement had been embedded. A second acid test, which determines whether a culture has taken root, lies in collaboration and co-production. Does the allotment draw in the local community? Allotments should be magnets for interaction. Locals often donate seeds, cuttings, poly-tunnels and, most importantly, their skillset and strong community ties were forged – all thanks to the allotment. Secondly, not only did allotments in the services that I ran make us largely self-sufficient, they presented us with a solid platform to sell and donate vegetables and fruit locally. That proved to be a great experience and life-skill for the service users.

SENSORY ENVIRONMENTS While the allotment is a hub of activity for service users and staff, designating a set space where service users can relax and wind down has always resonated with me. Therefore, wherever I have gone, I have always tried to accommodate a garden which promotes a multi-sensory environment. The allotment is of course part of that rich sensory environment. Service users and staff would always a make a point of growing rosemary, thyme, basil, cloves and mint, which stimulated smell, while lamb’s-ear, a plant with silvery, fuzzy leaves, stimulated touch. Often we’d cultivate lemongrass for its healing properties. Not only is it good for the digestive tract, its zingy aroma captivates the senses, as does the sight and sound of lemongrass being blown by the wind. It is almost hypnotic to watch it as it sings and dances in tune with the elements. In many ways, this age-old interaction between plant and nature symbolises the harmonious relationship forged between the service users and support workers, which is the lifeblood of any home. None of it can be achieved unless there’s trust and collaboration on both sides. Managers need guidance too. QCS, the leading provider of content, standards and policies for the social care sector, provides a suite of care plans and risk assessments, which are built on the guiding principles of person-centred support. With access to these key resources, an allotment presents an opportunity not just to harvest food but to also grow and nurture the bonds between staff and service users. Barry Price is a specialist in Adults with Learning Disabilities and Complex Needs To find out more about QCS, contact our compliance advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email sales@qcs.co.uk. Alternatively, if you're seeking a new challenge, QCS is hiring. For a list of current vacancies, visit www.qcs.co.uk/current-opportunities/

Golden Smiles as Dorset Care Homes Stage ‘Mini Tokyos’ Sports fans at two Dorset care homes have gone ‘hands-on’ after watching the excitement of the Tokyo Games. Inspired by Team GB’s exploits, staff and residents at Colten Care’s Brook View in West Moors and Avon Cliff in Bournemouth decided to stage their own ‘mini Olympics’ for fun. At Brook View, gentle rivalry was played out in indoor contests including ‘hook a duck’, a ladder and bean bag game, quoits, carpet bowls, football and hockey. After a ceremonial cauldron lighting, competitors at Avon Cliff turned their lounge into a venue for cycling, weightlifting, basketball and shooting. Competitors at both homes then took pride of place on podiums where they were presented with gold, silver and bronze trophies and medals. Iona Midlane, who was declared the overall winner at Brook View, said: “We all had

great fun playing and egging each other on.” At Avon Cliff, gold medal winners including Barbara Binding in basketball, Francis McCausland in shooting and Pam Cheadle in cycling. Fellow competitor Bella Kier, who also won a tennis tournament at Avon Cliff earlier in the summer, said: “We always have the most fun playing sport and it is always very well supported.” Brook View Companionship team member Sarah Moule said: “Our residents were following the Tokyo action closely every day and supporting Team GB. “There was a great deal of laughter and smiles all round Brook View as we then created our own ‘Team BV’ and took part in various tournaments. “Everyone enjoyed going hands-on and getting active.”

Registered Care Home Manager Required Imagine waking up to spectacular countryside views and beautifully landscaped gardens. If you are a Registered Care Home Manager who wants to make a real difference, then this could be you. Situated in the rural village of Hatch Beauchamp, nestled in the stunning Somerset countryside, Beauchamp House is a Grade II listed Georgian manor house that has been beautifully refurbished and extended in recent years by Care South. An exciting opportunity has arisen for a registered Care Home Manager with a proven track-record to lead an exceptional team, including nurses, and successfully manage an exceptional care home. Are you passionate about care and want a different pace of life in a beautiful location? Stop imagining and contact us today! Our competitive package includes: • Exceptional salary for an exceptional manager and substantial and achievable on-target bonus • Relocation package (for geographical moves)

• An excellent induction programme and an ongoing commitment to your career development • Life Assurance (3x annual salary) • Contributory Pension Scheme Care South is a not-for-profit charity and leading provider of quality nursing, residential and dementia care across the south of England. Call us now on 01202 712448 or visit https://bit.ly/BeauchampManager


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CQC Publishes COVID-19 Vaccination Guidance For People Working/Deployed In Care Homes The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) have published operational guidance for mandatory vaccination of people deployed or working in a care home. The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) have amended the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 so that, from 11 November 2021, all care home workers, and anyone else entering a care home, will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, unless they have an exemption. Registered persons (registered managers, registered providers) will need to ensure that they do not allow anyone entry into a care home unless they have had a complete course of an authorised vaccine or fall into one of the groups exempt from being vaccinated. Detailed information about how you can prepare for and meet this change in the Regulations can be found in the DHSC operational guidance. We urge all relevant providers, managers and staff to read the guidance and take any necessary actions in order to be ready for when this duty is in place. The requirement forms part of the fundamental standards and will be monitored and enforced in appropriate cases by CQC. We will not begin monitoring this until it becomes a duty in November. We will continue to use our existing assessment and enforcement policies and take a proportionate approach. This statement outlines our approach to a) registration, b) ongoing monitoring and inspection, and c) enforcement.

REGISTRATION CQC will seek assurance from new providers, and from existing providers varying their conditions of registration, that they will have a robust governance process to: • monitor vaccination and COVID-19 status of staff • ensure staff maintain an up to date vaccination status (by providing guid-

ance and assistance for staff to get vaccinated) and ensure staff maintain up to date best IPC practice • monitor vaccination and COVID-19 status of personnel entering the care home, and • where applicable, make reasonable adjustments to ensure people using the service receive safe care and treatment.

FOR NEW MANAGER APPLICATIONS CQC WILL SEEK ASSURANCE THAT: • applicants are fully vaccinated or exempt • applicants are aware of their duties in relation to the new Regulations regarding COVID-19 vaccination.

ONGOING MONITORING AND INSPECTION • Monitoring that providers comply with the Regulations is CQC’s responsibility. • We propose to add the following question to the Provider Information Return (PIR) once this duty is in place: ‘How are you assured that those you employ and deploy within your service have had their mandatory vaccinations?’ • We will also build a similar question into our monitoring approach once this duty is in place. Further information will be provided in due course. • Where we have information of concern, through any route, we will follow this up. This may include seeking assurance from the provider or carrying out an on-site inspection. • On inspection, where the information we hold identifies concerns, we will look for evidence to confirm systems and processes are in place to comply with the requirement. • Registered persons will not be required to show a record of the evidence itself to inspectors but will need to be able to provide reassurance that systems and processes are in place to ensure individuals who enter the prem-

ises are fully vaccinated. Registered persons may choose to make a record of the evidence they have seen for their own internal staff employment record keeping. If the evidence is collected and recorded, all personal data must be handled in accordance with UK GDPR. This includes providing individuals with privacy information at the stage their data is being collected. Please refer to the guidance from the Information Commissioner’s Office to ensure you have the appropriate lawful basis, technical and security measures in place to protect personal data. • Registered persons (or those acting on behalf of the registered person) must check that anyone wishing to enter the premises has received a full course of vaccination, unless they are exempt. CQC inspectors are included within the scope of visiting professionals for the purpose of this Regulation and we are considering the practical implications of this for our staff in exercising their regulatory activity. Compliance with the Regulations would be an appropriate reason for not granting access to a CQC inspector, or another individual, unless they are exempt.

ENFORCEMENT • Any enforcement activity which is generated as a result of a breach of the amended Regulations will be undertaken on a proportionate basis, based on our assessment of the impact on quality of care and people’s safety, in line with our existing enforcement policy. We will decide whether/what action to take based on proportionality, treating each case individually and on its’ own merits, in line with our enforcement policy. For full information on the scope of the Regulations, how to collect and record evidence of vaccination or exemption, and for useful sources of support and information, please refer to the DHSC operational guidance at www.gov.uk/government/publications/vaccinationof-people-working-or-deployed-in-care-homes-operational-guidance

Ledbury Brain Injury Unit Hosts Caribbean Day A Brain Injury Unit in Ledbury hosted a Caribbean day with both staff and residents getting involved. With restrictions on holidays still in place, Market Lodge thought they would bring a taste of the Caribbean to proceedings, with a jam-packed day of fun, games and fancy dress. Residents made their own costumes and helped with the props. As well as pinatas, a Zumba session and food and drinks, there was bingo lingo, crafts and a photo booth to capture the wonderful memories. Juls Simpson, service manager at Market Lodge – which is run by Shaw healthcare – said: “Lockdown has been particularly tough for our residents here as they go out often

and following a residents meeting and discussing holidays, they decided this is what they wanted to do. Games were specifically designed to set residents up to succeed in line with their cognitive needs and they all won prizes which when down really well.” Market Lodge is a specialist acquired brain injury care centre providing cost effective quality accommodation for adults aged 18 – 65 seeking short or long stay services. The facility provides care and therapeutic support for people who have received an acquired brain injury through direct or organic trauma. Designed to meet the needs of individuals requiring enhanced supported living, nursing and reablement services in a post-acute setting.


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Radio Entertainment for Older Listeners

By Andy Marriott, Station Manager Serenade Radio (www.serenade-radio.com)

Life for patients living in care can be much improved by access to pleasant entertainment. Not just from watching the television but by listening to the radio. Many older people dismiss todays “wireless” as being all noisy pop nonsense or obscure highbrow classical music with shouted commercial adverts for products they don’t need, or want. They may not be aware that there is one radio station, Serenade Radio, which is built around the great entertainment music of the past. Remember the sounds of the bands from days gone by, Henry Hall, Benny Goodman and Glenn Miller and singers like Bing Crosby, Rosemarie Clooney, Alma Cogan and Frank Sinatra. All these and many more old style programmes like “Sing Something Simple”, “Music While You Work”, Cinema Organs and old dance bands make up the content of Serenade Radio. This is today’s “wireless” which does so much to revive happy memories of the old BBC Light Programme. If your guests would like to give it a try they don’t need a radio because It is what is known as an on line radio station. It can be can picked up via Wi-Fi on their iPad, their smart phones or laptop computers. All they need to do it to type into the browser, “SerenadeRadio.com: and they will see our web page. Click on “`Press to Listen”

Johnny Beerling, ex BBC Radio Controller who presents Big Band Special on Serenade Radio every Sunday evening at 6 pm (repeated on Tuesday’s at 9 pm)

and we at Serenade will entertain them, free of charge and without any advertisements. Of course some may be lucky enough to have access to one of those clever loudspeaker gadgets, if so they simply order it “Alexa, play Serenade Radio !” and there you are. All of us who contribute to Serenade are ex professional broadcasters who work for nothing because we believe there is no other radio station like it and by making the programmes on Serenade we are hopefully providing a public service in these difficult times. Being an online station people can listen all over the world and we get letters and emails from listeners in America, Australia, Sweden and Spain. So I think it’s time we spread the news to people in care homes all over the UK. The proof of the pudding is in the eating so why not give it a try? One click on the “Programmes” tag on the Home page of Serenade, and you can see for yourself the range of music we broadcast. If you like what you hear please spread the word to your residents and their families. Happy Listening Visit www.serenade-radio.com

FREE HR and Employment Law Webinar for Care Sector Professionals PARIS SMITH SOLICITORS, IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE CARER

fessionals and managers. This is your chance to hear from Paris Smith employment law experts Clive Dobbin, Claire Merritt and Tabytha Cunningham on the topics that most affect your sector. There will also be a live Q&A session where you can ask for advice on specific issues that you’re facing.

• EU workers and your responsibilities • Q&A session

EVENT DETAILS Wednesday 22 September 2021 11:00 – 12:30pm The coronavirus pandemic has affected the care sector in a profound and unique way. In an industry where employment issues can be complex, staff turnover high and procedures difficult to manage, the effects of the pandemic present on-going challenges for HR pro-

AGENDA: • The Covid-19 vaccination programme: employee rights and your obligations • Managing mental health of staff

Book your place: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/ WN_UkGUuGr9TFKyG1R1YOS4bw


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Say Hello to the Carer’s Latest Unsung Hero… Sandra McGale, Activity Coordinator from Larkfield View Care Home We here at the CARER are thrilled to announce that Sandra McGale Activity Coordinator from Larkfield View Care Home Greenock is our latest Unsung Hero! Sandra was nominated by head office marketing administrator Jenni Mack, who explained the changing role and the duties Sandra undertook to ensure that residents and families were reassured and were able to visit safely. “As visiting restrictions were lifted every one in the home was so excited at the prospect of our Residents finally being able to meet with their loved ones at this time outside and later in doors ,” Jenni said “However it was quickly established that not all of the visits were nice visits and were proving challenging, and Sandra was readily available to undertake new responsibilities to organise and monitor the visits and provide support for the Resident and their loved ones as necessary . “This role was a difficult one and Sandra found that the visits could be distressing as the Resident had no knowledge or recollection of the person who was visiting. Sandra provided reassurance and distraction which made the visit more comfortable for both the resident and the visitor .” “Visiting at Larkfieldview operates seven days a week and on a daily basis Sandra can be responsible for th testing of 24 visitors . Some of the visitors are new to her as she has never met them and most visitors have never had a lateral test before, some are elderly.” “A lot of reassurance is provided to the visitors from Sandra at this time who will explain the procedure and ensure the documentation is completed correctly then testing will be registered.” Larkfieldview has 4 allocated visiting areas in the home , the garden area for visiting plus essential visits which are generally carried out in Residents bedrooms . Excellent communication and planning skills are essential to ensure that the visiting schedule runs smoothly with the cooperation from all the relevant units is required . “Sandra has these skills in abundance and she has a sound knowledge of the visiting protocols which are in place, and is the key to the success of our visiting programme, and we are thrilled Sandra’s hard work and dedication has been recognised.

WELL DONE SANDRA!!

We here at The Carer are delighted to award worthy winner Sandra a luxury “celebration” hamper packed full of all those “artful” little extras that make any celebration a truly memorable occasion, containing an absolute smorgasbord of luxury comestibles that are sure to delight the senses and tickle the palate!

UNSUNG HERO HISTORY We started our Unsung Hero award in 2015 to celebrate our 10th anniversary. It was at that time a “one-off” prize reward that member of staff going above and beyond their normal duties. A no glitz or glamour small gesture on our part to put a bit of cheer back into the sector. Little did we know just how popular it would become, and, more importantly, just how much of an insight it gives us into the dedication, devotion, and commitment those working in the sector have, and can often goes ignored or taken for granted. Once again were overwhelmed not only with the number of nominees care homes up and down the country sent to us, but the truly heart-warming and uplifting stories which once again makes us proud to be associated with such a passionate and caring profession. It has become increasingly more difficult over the years to pick an overall winner, and we are delighted to add some “unofficial” Marks & Spencer vouchers as runner-up prizes. I cannot say enough just how proud we are to be involved in such a vital and devoted industry, and our 4 extra runner ups are: Brygida Jozefiak: Magnolia Reach Disability Care Wrexham Celine Craigie-Williams: St Vincent’s Nursing Home Middlesex Judy Shire: Milestones Trust Bristol Jenneth Javier: Rehabilitation Education and Community Homes A £25 Marks & Spencer’s gift voucher is on its way! Well done to you all!!! We would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who put forward nominations we had a wonderful response, it may sound tired old cliché, but it is not meant to be, when we say, that in our eyes “every nomination was a winner” and we are just sorry we cannot give an award to everybody! Watch out for further details of our next “Unsung Hero” with the same great prize of a luxury celebration hamper!


PAGE 8 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

What Does the Recovery of UK Care Homes Look Like? Research released this week highlights the dire impact COVID-19 has had on professional carers in the UK. Over three quarters (76%) of UK carers predict that their experience will have a long-lasting negative impact on their mental health and 82% have already experienced a downturn in their mental health, which is far higher compared with other European countries in the study. 95% of carers are now working longer hours than before the pandemic. Facilitating video calls with families (42%), staff shortages due to quarantining or sick colleagues (38%), taking regular COVID tests (40%) and changing PPE more frequently (24%) have all contributed to their burgeoning workloads – and this is having a huge effect on their physical, mental and emotional health. ESSITY, the UK-based professional services health and hygiene company, has undertaken this research to understand the impact of COVID19 on professional care services and to identify what needs to be actioned to help carers in the workplace. As a provider of digital health technology in Europe, Australia, and North America within the care home space, ESSITY understands how access to new technology can help streamline workloads and reduce stress for key workers. In fact, research shows nearly two fifths (37%) of

carers would like governments and private companies (41%) to invest in this technology that will better support them in their role, while 52% want more training to help them feel better supported in their role. While a remarkable 94% of British carers feel society values their role more highly now than before the pandemic, there are numerous broader issues that must be addressed to impact the recovery of UK care homes, most pressingly the health and wellbeing of their employees. Colleen Blaney, Care home Manager at Parr Care Home commented: “The professional care space has been through one of its most tumultuous years and we’re now starting to see the fallout. Carers have made unimaginable sacrifices to keep their residents safe and it’s vital we take care of them. While training and investment in tools to enable them to deliver care are key, we must also ensure access to mental health services for all frontline workers is available to protect our staff and secure the recovery of the industry.” By Axel Nordberg, Essity Global Brand Director added: “Our research has uncovered heart-breaking issues that carers face day-to-day as they continue to work through the pandemic. Supporting mental and physical wellbeing should be at the core of what we do in the care home industry. At ESSITY, we pledge to help alleviate some of the day-

to-day stress and support carer’s physical and mental wellbeing through the continued development of digital health technologies needed to support them in their role.” The research was commissioned by ESSITY to identify how professional carers roles have changed as a result of the pandemic. ESSITY champions better connected elderly care and creates digital health technologies to improve the wellbeing of both residents and staff. Research into the role of the professional carer was conducted by Ketchum Analytics, on behalf of TENA. A total of 102 UK adult carers were polled. Fieldwork was conducted by Censuswide, between 16th Mar and 29th Mar 2021.

Oldest Lady in London Celebrates 108th Birthday Mrs Betty Spear celebrated her 108th birthday at St Judes Nursing home in Sutton, making her the oldest lady in London. “I still feel 21” she remarked. Betty’s advice to the younger generations is “Be happy and kind, be tolerant of old people and try to help them”. When asked about her secret to staying healthy, she remarks, “Be nice to people and try and make them laugh and a little drop of whiskey every day” Betty (real name Sarah Spear), moved to London at 18 to become a Nurse. Practicing in Carshalton, she met and married George Spear in 1947 before giving birth to their beautiful daughter Anne. Sadly, Betty has outlived both her daughter and husband, but has remained positive and full of joy in the face of all adversity she has

encountered. To mark her special day, Betty was treated to a surprise birthday from her St Judes family in the Care Home in which she resides. Betty was also Joined by her family – her son-in-law, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, as well as the Local Mayor. Patricia Fyfe, Matron at St Judes Nursing Home commented how “We are honoured to be celebrating Betty’s 108th birthday. Betty brings her warmth, kind heart with quick wit to the Home and we all blessed to have her as part of our St Judes family.” “To start the celebrations, Betty was treated to a pamper session with our hairdresser and care team. The afternoon brought about a surprise party in the garden to include games, cake and a very special dove release to mark this extra special day. Betty found the whole day to be “marvellous”. When asked what she had enjoyed the most, Betty responded “Everything! Especially the card from the Queen, seeing Ken and the children, my lovely party with my friends and the doves. I want to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart.” The party was the first the Home has thrown since before the pandemic. St Judes has remained one of the only homes within the region to remain COVID free. Patricia Fyfe, Matron at St Judes Nursing Home

remarked “This party was extra special for the whole Home. We have been careful to uphold our stringent processes and protocols to safeguard our Residents and Staff. These celebrations are a lovely way to bring everyone together in a safe and secure way.”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 9

Oh They Do Love To Be Beside The Seaside Residents at a local dementia care home are being treated to a staycation with a difference, thanks to a beach environment that has been created especially for them at their landlocked home in Wellington, Somerset. The activities team at Camelot House and Lodge have been busy recreating a good oldfashioned day at the seaside, complete with sand, beach accessories, ice-cream and even a specially tailored ambient soundtrack. Activities co-ordinator Richard Dempslake said: “Many of people’s happiest memories are associated with past seaside holidays, and our residents are no exception. “And because of the nature of dementia it means that their older memories are the most frequently recalled. “Many of our residents’ youthful holidays were spent on UK beaches, so we’ve done our best to bring the great British seaside to Wellington, and they certainly seem to be appreciating it. “When we get a sunny day we are careful to ensure there’s plenty of shade and liquid refreshments to keep people comfortable, and they’re enjoying burying their toes in the nice warm sand, making sandcastles

and digging little trenches. “This activity has been a great sensory experience for many of our residents, remembering the beaches of their youth through touch. “They’ve enjoyed finding seashells and using the buckets and spades. “To create a more authentic vibe we’ve put on a soundtrack that plays the noise of the sea lapping on the beach and the calls of seagulls – but only in moderation of course! “And for those residents who prefer to stay indoors, a mini beach was prepared on a tray so they were still able to take part in the fun. “Staff and friends of Camelot kindly provided windbreakers, beach balls, bats and balls, mini surf boards and a rubber ring, which generated a lot of discussions among the residents, who were also keen to share views on which UK beaches are the best. “And yes, of course we enjoyed singing that old favourite song you’ve just got to sing when you’re on the beach: I do like to be beside the seaside.” Camelot House and Lodge is run by award-winning dementia care provider, Camelot Care, who have other homes in Bridgwater and Plymouth.

Equine Visitors Delight Horse Lovers At Dorset Care Home A pair of horses who normally work with young disabled people have brought joy to elderly residents of a Dorset care home. Colonel and Elvis made a 15-mile round trip in a twin horse box from The Fortune College, a centre for riding therapy in Bransgore, to Colten Care’s Avon Reach home in Mudeford. Their special visit served as a personal thank-you to Avon Reach resident and horselover Margaret Barnes who has contributed to Colonel’s living costs for more than 15 years. Margaret first became involved with the college around 20 years ago when she was editing the New Milton talking newspaper for blind and partially sighted people in the New Forest. She became interested in sponsoring a horse after hearing that a local bank provided support that way. Margaret said: “I really liked the idea of what the college was about and all the good work they were doing with the children. I love horses but have never ridden one except as a child. “Before Colonel I sponsored a horse called Bertie. I used to visit the college quite often to see the horses

work. “It was delightful to see Colonel and Elvis making the trip to Avon Reach. I continue to support Colonel with sponsorship and it was such a joy to welcome both horses for an afternoon with us.” The visit came about after college representatives offered to bring the horses to see Margaret and fellow residents in line with the relaxing of Covid restrictions on care home visits. Jane Roberts, Companionship team member at Avon Reach, said: “Our residents thoroughly enjoyed meeting the horses. They spent time stroking the pair and feeding them carrots, which were consumed very quickly. “Both Colonel and Elvis were very gentle and the smell and feel of them contributed to a really pleasurable experience all round. “Many of our residents have spent time with horses in the past and it was fantastic to witness the precious moments when they could renew hands-on contact with a pat and a stroke.” For resident Jean Davies, the experience broke new ground. “I had never stroked a horse before and I was thrilled,” said Jean. “It was the highlight of my year.” College Principal Jane Delves and Equine Manager Claire Wesson both accompanied the horses. Jane said: “This was a lovely trip and we were so happy to see the residents come outside and greet the horses. “We’re grateful to Margaret for her continued sponsorship of Colonel. We rely on such support to help towards the costs of essentials such as feed, hay, shoes and teeth checks.” Colonel is a 25-year-old piebald (black and white) cob while Elvis is a New Forest grey pony, aged 20.



THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 11

Stars Unite Against Dementia for Alzheimer’s Society’s Memory Walks TV’s biggest stars are putting their best foot forward this Autumn, joining thousands in support of Alzheimer’s Society’s flagship fundraising event Memory Walk, sponsored by Santander, taking place throughout September and October 2021. Famous faces are backing the public who are taking part to raise vital funds for people affected by dementia, many of whom are in desperate need of support in the wake of the pandemic. Line of Duty star and Alzheimer’s Society Ambassador Vicky McClure will be taking part in a Memory Walk local to her and urging others to do the same. Comedic legends Hugh Dennis and John Bishop will also be supporting Memory Walk and Only Fools and Horses’ favourite, Sue Holderness will be taking part in memory of her late mother. Actor Sally Lindsay who starred in Still Open All Hours and has recently finished filming her latest project, will be attending a walk, in memory of her grandmother. Memory Walk also has the backing of Olympic Gold medallist, Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill. Thousands of people are expected to walk in celebration or in memory of a loved one living with dementia, with the leading dementia charity hosting 20 organised walks across the UK from Brighton to Newcastle. People can also organise their own Memory Walk at a time and location of their choice with a group of close friends and family. However people choose to take part, money raised will help Alzheimer’s Society continue to support the 850,000 people with dementia through its vital services (like the Dementia Connect support line) which have been used over five and a half million times since March 2020.

WHY MEMORY WALK IS IMPORTANT TO THEM Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill, Santander UK brand ambassador, said: 'It’s fantastic that Memory Walk events on location are back after a year break because of Covid, alongside the option to take part in your own organised walk. 'I hope everyone signs up to one of this Autumn’s events, and has a wonderful time together again getting out and about while also raising money for this very special cause. 'I’m proud to support Alzheimer’s Society Memory Walk, sponsored by Santander, to ensure nobody affected by dementia goes without the help they so urgently need.' Vicky McClure said: 'Last year, while we couldn't walk together in per-

son, I was determined that my family and I would walk in memory of my nana locally anyway, and I was in awe of the sheer number of people who also stepped onto their local streets to raise vital funds for the charity. 'This year, I am delighted to say that people can again unite at 20 locations across the UK, to create new memories together and support the 850,000 people with dementia.' 'There’s never been a better or more important time to get involved.' Actor and comedian Hugh Dennis said: 'It’s very exciting that Memory Walk events are back - you just can’t beat that amazing feeling of walking with other people for such an important cause. People with dementia have been badly hit by coronavirus, so please take part in Memory Walk and help Alzheimer’s Society continue to support people with dementia and their families when it has never been more needed.' Comedian John Bishop said: 'I’m walking for everyone living with dementia, I’m walking for the carers who are struggling to cope and for the researchers who are working tirelessly for a breakthrough. I hope everyone takes part in Memory Walk this year, so together, we will walk towards a future without dementia.' Actor Sue Holderness said: 'I’ll be walking in memory of my darling mum and for the 850,000 people living with dementia today in the UK. It’s lovely jubbly that people have a choice to take part in a local event or take on their own Memory Walk this year – all that matters is that as many people as possible get involved and raise as much money as possible, with every step counting towards a world without dementia.' Actor and Alzheimer’s Society Ambassador Sally Lindsay said: 'When my beautiful gran Ellen had dementia, it was absolutely devastating for the family watching her slowly decline to the point where she started not to recognise us. My heart really goes out to the families whose loved ones went downhill so dramatically or tragically passed away during lockdown. It is so important to know you are not alone.' 'Memory Walk is a great way to honour your loved ones and support Alzheimer’s Society’s crucial work.'

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Dancer and choreographer, Dame Arlene Phillips, is supporting this campaign in memory of her late father, Abraham, who had Alzheimer’s. Dame Arlene Philips said: 'I am proud to be supporting these walks in memory of my wonderful dad who had dementia. Caring for someone with dementia is a full-time job and the pandemic made everything so much more challenging - disrupting routines, people being left having to care from a distance and essential care and support being reduced. 'It’s so important that carers get the support they need, as well as people living with dementia.' 'Raising whatever you can through Alzheimer’s Society’s Memory Walks will help make a huge difference to thousands of lives, it’s not too late to sign up!' Game of Thrones villain Iwan Rheon lends his support in tribute to his Nain, Beryl, who sadly died from vascular dementia in 2008. Iwan Rheon said: 'Dementia is something that hits close to home and so I’ll definitely be digging out my Memory Walk t-shirt in time for September! As always, I’ll be walking in memory of my Nain, Beryl who had vascular dementia. I hope that the more we talk about this heartbreaking condition and the more we can raise vital funds for Alzheimer’s Society, the more we can make a difference to the 850,000 people with dementia in the UK and their families.'

A DIFFICULT ROAD TO RECOVERY People affected by dementia, worst hit by coronavirus, face a difficult road to recovery as a result of thousands having symptoms increase and mental health deteriorating due to a lack of social contact, routine and interruptions to essential care and support. In addition, this caused 50,000 to go undiagnosed, unable to get the help and support that is most effective the earlier you get it. Alzheimer’s Society’s crucial work has never been more needed. Kate Lee, CEO at Alzheimer’s Society said: 'We are so grateful for the support of our wonderful celebrity supporters who all have their own personal reason for backing Memory Walk. Not only has the pandemic left a gaping hole in the hearts of thousands of grieving families, many are also struggling to cope watching their surviving loved one become a shell of the person they once were. 'Whether you decide to take part in one of the 20 organised walks, or decide to walk with a small group of friends and family in your local area, all that matters is that we unite against dementia and continue to support people who need it most.'


PAGE 12 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

Recruitment and Recovery Challenges in the Care Sector Post-Pandemic Whilst there is a sense of optimism within the care sector following a turbulent 18 months, there remains several challenges to contend with, particularly recruitment. Understaffing proved a huge challenge during the pandemic: many workers who typically operated across several care homes pre-pandemic were no longer able to; changes to immigration law made non-British workers sparse; there was no real mention of social care reform in the Queen’s speech; and the decision to make vaccines mandatory in the sector from November will also provide another hurdle. Jennifer Johnston, associate in law firm BLM’s occupational disease team in London, considers how the sector can proactively tackle the recruitment challenge and provides practical advice for care home employers. It’s been a challenging time for everyone involved with social care, with the sector now facing several serious recruitment and recovery challenges. According to independent social work charity Skills for Care, there were 112,000 vacant roles in adult social care in England last year, and this number is anticipated to rise significantly by the end of 2021. It’s a crisis that has quickly come to a head and is the result of both long- and short-term problems that have been poorly handled, or not been dealt with at all. The UK’s population is aging rapidly. According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), in 1990 the median age of the UK was 35.8 years old, in 2020 the median age was 40.5 years – a huge rise in just 30 years. It’s created a society where more of us are suffering with conditions associated with old age, such as dementia, placing greater pressure on care providers to accommodate an increasing number of residents and patients. It’s a problem that’s been mounting for some time, exacerbated by a serious lack of central support and planning from successive governments. Even with a recent hint at plans to improve funding through a tax rise, it is something that will take time to implement and doesn’t directly address how social care for today’s elderly should be funded. In the shorter term, Brexit and its associated immigration policies have also made a serious impact over the past five years, slashing employee numbers in the UK, brought to a head by Covid-19. At the beginning of August, the government launched an open consultation on the impact of ending free movement on the adult social care sector specifically, so there are some early, promising signs that the government is taking the threat seriously.

adequately, and thus the social care profession is not attractive as a potential job. In the past, a large proportion of the workforce was recruited from overseas, often taking on positions in the care sector that they are technically overqualified for in their home country. However, Brexit and associated immigration laws have meant that coming to work in the UK is now a less attractive option to overseas workers. Understaffing has only deepened as a result of the so called recent ‘pingdemic’ riding roughshod over rotas. When it comes to alleviating the pressures of recruitment, there will be no one-size fits all approach and each care home needs to consider this in the context of its own business stream and model. That said, if you are struggling to attract or retain staff, there are a few strategies you can take. It may seem obvious, but the first point of call should be offering better pay and conditions if you can, standing out from other organisations will make the recruitment process easier. Just recently, we’ve seen some operators offer significant ‘golden hellos’ with the likes of HC One offering a £10,000 welcome bonus for some of its registered nurse positions. However, this will not be applicable to all employers in the sector, with some providers often facing tight margins as a result of council-funded care, so will therefore not have the resources to offer higher wages. In terms of retention, the priority should be ensuring you are clear on what pressures each of your employees are currently facing – a formal audit throughout your organisation with each employee is a good way of doing this, as you will have a clear understanding of what concerns are pressing to each individual. This will not only help with future planning, but you may be able to help solve many underlying issues there and then. For example, if you have staff that are not UK residents and may be impacted by Brexit, it is worth discussing with them on whether you are able to provide support, in the form of advice or sponsoring a Health and Care Worker Visa if they meet the salary requirements. More ‘soft’ issues, such as if a worker feels underappreciated, can also be dealt with appropriately, helping you to keep your very best talent. However, many of these points are short term fixes that will only go so far to solving the current recruitment crisis. For longer-term change, it's clear that greater government funding and social care reform, which has been repeatedly promised over the years, is going to be needed. The government’s proposed NHS reforms do suggest a move towards people receiving more care at home. It's likely the domiciliary care sector will become more and more prevalent as time goes on, as an often-cheaper alternative to residential care, and the growing use of tech enabling more vulnerable people to live at home safely with adaptations. Domiciliary care often gives workers more flexibility in their day and

SOLVING THE CRISIS: GOVERNMENT PROMISES NOT KEPT?

might therefore be a more attractive job prospect. Some providers could well be revisiting their operational

The current government had pledged to reform social care, with the Prime Minister promising to make social care a priority in his speech after the election results. Likewise, in November 2020, former Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock confirmed the Party’s pledge of £1 billion in funding per annum for the next five years to assist local authorities meet the demands of social care. The plans also set out an intention to work with other political parties to reach long term solutions, as the former Health Secretary Matt Hancock categorically stated that people should not have to sell their homes to pay for their social care. Whilst a positive sentiment, The Conservative Party faced criticism for the lack of detail in its plans. There had been an expectation that change would arrive at this year’s Queen’s speech, yet there was a distinct lack of decisive action mentioned within it. Of course, the pandemic took precedent over most other governing concerns, but as we approach 18 months since the pandemic hit out shores, there has been little real support given to the care sector – even though it has borne the brunt of the pandemic throughout. There has been little progression on the government’s initial promises and even with the spotlight on the sector during the pandemic, there has been no pledge on funding or on a specific Social Care Bill. The social care tax previously suggested by No.10 gives some hope but it is in-keeping with vague promises that, even if stuck to, will take a long time to deliver. Current residents and care service users are already underfunded however, and require immediate support, sooner rather than later.

models to offer more at-home care, if that is what the workforce increasingly favours.

ALLEVIATING RECRUITMENT PRESSURES

cialist, professional advice to navigate your organisation through these obstacles. Though it seems the sector

This lack of investment has meant that social care workers are typically not well paid for the difficult work that they do. The workers may be carrying out very difficult and strenuous work that they are not paid for

some way to ensuring employers and employees alike are supported at this turbulent time.

FUTURE THREATS TO THE SECTOR There have been new challenges in care over the past two years on a near monthly basis. One we can expect to cause significant issues come 11th November is the introduction of mandatory vaccines for care sector workers. This will provide a further duty of care on employers to ensure all eligible employees are vaccinated, and is likely to further impact staffing levels if there are cases where workers who are, for their own reasons, unwilling to receive the jabs. The government has estimated up to 40,000 could be at risk of losing their jobs as a result, which would cost the sector approximately £100m to recruit and train replacement staff. Just recently, the government published operational guidance on vaccinations for care providers setting out the importance of vaccination, to protect those in their care. There are many reasons why a staff member may not have the vaccine and those under threat of losing a portion of their workforce when these new rules are enforced should consider launching an internal education program for their workers. If you are able to pinpoint some of the specific issues and concerns, staff members may be more inclined to receive the vaccine, which is crucial at this moment of mass understaffing. At a time when there are so many new potential legal issues facing the sector, it is sensible to seek speis some way off solving the many recruitment and recovery challenges, early engagement with advice can go

Open Study College Announces 39% Increase In Students Aged 60 And Over

Leading distance learning provider Open Study College has revealed a significant shift in its demographic, with a 39% increase in new student enrolments from those aged 60 and over. The statistic is based on figures comparing 2018 enrolments with those in 2020 during the global pandemic. As part of research undertaken by Open Study College, there are a number of reasons people typically choose to follow the distance learning route including: those who are unable to physically attend a college or university due to suffering with mental or physical health; caring for family and home responsibilities whilst learning; individuals looking to upskill; or students that need to learn new skills and gain necessary qualifications for a new or change in career.

More recently however, a pattern has emerged as a significant number of older students have joined Open Study College purely because they want to keep on learning in their later years about subjects that are of interest to them, providing purpose and keeping their minds active. John, 74, from South Gloucestershire said: “It's important to keep the intellect alive in later years and completing a course and receiving the accreditation acts as a tremendous boost to one's mental health.” Marilyn, 70, from Truro said: “I am 70 going on 29 years old. Physically I am doomed but will not be mentally. This is my tenth course with Open Study College, and I hope there will be more. To retirees thinking about taking a course online I would say ‘go for it’.” Linda, 75, from Worcestershire said: “I am enjoying the course at Open Study College and I’m lucky to have been able to choose, for the first time, what it is I study.” CEO of Open Study College, Samantha Rutter, said: “Learning new skills shouldn't stop when retirement starts. We couldn’t be prouder of all the students in the Open Study College family, and those that are continuing to study and excite their minds well into their years of retirement really help solidify our ethos of making education accessible to all. “It’s interesting to see how life-changing events such as the global pandemic can contribute to how people chose to spend their free time, and in our research it’s clear that some of our older students are keen to keep on learning about subject matters that really interests them or was once integral to their careers and lives. “This increase in older generations studying proves that learning is more accessible than ever before. We work incredibly hard to ensure that we adapt our courses for the young and young at heart. Many of

our courses come with the option of studying online or via a paperbased study pack where course materials are sent to your home. We know that this is often a preferred method of studying with our more mature learners. "Our student support team and personal tutors are also on hand to guide students through their course, and for those with additional needs we can provide our materials in larger fonts or on coloured paper where required. Making learning more accessible is always going to be one of our top priorities and we hope to see more retirees benefit from learning with us.” To find out more or to register for a course visit www.openstudycollege.com or follow Open Study College on Facebook, Instagram, twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 13

Dementia Killed More Women Than Covid-19 Last Year, Reveals Survey Dementia was the greatest cause of death for women in 2020 according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS). The study revealed that 45,922 women in England and Wales died from dementia, surpassing the number that died fromCovid. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease killed more than 24,000 men according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) making it the third most common cause of male death, after Covid-19 and heart disease. The dementia death total for women has led charities to reiterate the urgent need for a global effort matching that of the drive to find Covid-19 vaccines. Currently dementia affects 850,000 people in the United Kingdom. Hilary Evans, chief executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK has called dementia “our greatest longterm medical challenge”.

“With the number of people with dementia set to triple, we need to see concerted global action now. “To safeguard progress and improve outcomes around the world, it’s vital our government invests to maintain the UK as a global hub for dementia research to safeguard research progress and improve outcomes around the world”. In 2020, the top five causes of death were: • COVID-19 (12.1% of all deaths) • Dementia and Alzheimer’s (11.5% of all deaths) • Ischaemic heart disease (9.2% of all deaths) • Cerebrovascular disease (4.9% of all deaths) • Lung-based cancers (4.7% of all deaths). For deaths with a primary cause attributed to dementia, the 2020 figure shows a decrease in percentage from 12.5% in 2019 and 12.8% in 2018. This reduction has likely been impacted by coronavirusrelated dementia deaths and a decreased diagnosis rate.

Bolton Care Home Residents Are Off to The Pub for The First Time In Over A Year For Residents at HC-One’s residential and nursing care home, Meadow Bank House, in Great Lever, some residents had their first outing since the pandemic. The local pub is a favourite spot among residents, and today three went to Southfields pub for ‘Fish and Chips Friday’ for the first time in over a year. Gordon, Bernard and Sheila loved the change of scenery and the atmosphere of the place.

Sheila’s highlight was being able to have a wide range of different alcohol to order from, while rubbing her hands together she remarked, “Where is the drink list?!”

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Colleagues Audrey and Margaret, who organised the outing, said, “The atmosphere was amazing and there were some great conversations between the residents and the staff.”

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PAGE 14 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

How To Gain Weight Healthily By Jane Clarke, Dietitian and founder of www.nourishbyjaneclarke.com It can be easy to miss a meal without noticing, especially if you’re stressed, busy or have lost your appetite. Keeping a food diary can help you track how often you’re really eating (don’t forget to make a note of snacks), see how healthy your choices are, and spot the emotional triggers around your eating – saying you’ll eat after the kids are in bed, for example, then simply munching on some biscuits because you’re too tired to cook. Keep your diary for at least two weeks, then with the information to hand, you can tweak your eating, so you feel stronger, fitter and more resilient.

4. Try the Mediterranean diet

Gaining weight, for many, can be tough. You might struggle to get your recommended daily calories due to illness, lack of appetite or mental health condition. Wellwishers often suggest that “just eating more” will surely do the trick, but it’s not that simple, particularly if you follow a certain diet, have allergies or are under medical investigation. It can be easy to fall into a vicious cycle of the less we eat, the less we want to eat. Trauma, for example, can cause a surge of ‘fight or flight’ hormones which can tip the body into ‘catabolism’ – when it begins to break down the muscles, causing weakness, weight loss and that shocking gaunt look we sometimes see in the recently bereaved or unwell.

HEALTHY APPROACHES TO WEIGHT GAIN Of course, everyone is different, and their reasons and requirements to gain weight can vary. But there are some general practices that you can apply when it comes to nourishing your body to gain weight healthily.

1. Make every mouthful count When you’re struggling to put on or maintain weight, it’s not as simple as needing to eat more. For example, if you’re stressed, unwell, recovering from emotional or physical trauma, you may find that although your body needs more nourishment, you actually have less of an appetite than usual, so you need to ensure that every mouthful has the maximum nutritional value it can. Sip a smoothie or a nutritionally balanced drink between meals to give you the energy you need to recover.

2. Don’t fill up on fibre Although fruits and vegetables are essential for our health, they’re also rich in fibre which can mean we feel full too quickly. If you’re feeling unwell and already have a small appetite, it can mean you stop eating before you’ve taken in all the energy and nutrients you need.

3. Keep a food diary

I’m a fan of the Mediterranean diet as it offers a perfect balance of energy-giving complex carbohydrates, protein, healthy fats, and antioxidant-packed fruit and vegetables - not to mention cheese, which I love! By tweaking the levels of the more calorific foods (fats, dairy products), you can adjust your weight while still enjoying delicious and healthy foods.

FOODS TO GAIN WEIGHT HEALTHILY What foods can you include in your diet to increase and maintain weight?

Protein Protein-rich foods can be very valuable when you want to improve your body’s strength, immune system and stabilise energy levels and moods. Often when you’re fighting diseases such as cancer, your body has a tendency to break down your muscles and leave you feeling weak and vulnerable, so it’s a priority to increase your intake of protein rich-foods to help counteract the effects of the disease and treatments. While the thought of tucking into large quantities of anything, let alone piles of meat, can leave you cold, easier alternatives are a simple chicken soup or a frittata to have in the fridge for when you don’t have the energy or inclination to cook from scratch. You need protein to help give you strength and balance blood sugar to help you feel more resilient, so make the soup with a protein-rich stock, such as chicken, and stir in cream or shave some Parmesan on top to enrich it. You can keep portions small if you add calorie-rich ingredients such as olive, coconut or avocado oils, nut milks and dairy or non-dairy cream, such as coconut cream, or butter.

Carbohydrates Complex carbohydrates including sweet potatoes, porridge oats and wholegrains provide valuable energy and nutrients. They are also processed by the body more slowly than their refined counterparts such as white bread and pasta, and the effect is enhanced if you eat them with some protein such as fish, eggs or nuts. It means they release their energy more slowly, so you feel satisfied and strong, even if you’re eating less than you usually would.

Fats Fats provide a great source of calories, but can also make a dish taste better, which can be just what’s needed when you’re struggling with a jaded appetite. Add butter, cream, full-fat Greek-style yoghurt, olive or avocado oil to dishes. You can also add some finely grated hard cheese to puréed and mashed vegetables. Coconut cream or oil, or a nut butter are also delicious if you want to use non-dairy fat.

Poached fruit Sometimes we need to tempt our appetite and our taste buds, so don’t feel guilty about making food that’s pretty and appealing. You could keep jars of bright and colourful poached berries or stewed apples in the fridge, which need only a spoonful of thick and creamy Greek yoghurt to turn them into a gorgeous and healthy breakfast or snack

Chocolate Chocolate can have an appetite-stimulating effect. It’s probably down to the theobromine inside the chocolate which can act as a muscle relaxant and ease the ‘frog in the throat’ feeling which can take away appetite. You may like to try my chocolate trick, which is simply taking a few squares of a high cocoa bean chocolate, either nibbling on it whole or melting it in a small amount of milk and serving as an espresso cupsized portion of hot or cool chocolate drink. It can really help to ease swallowing and pique the interest of a lacking appetite.

Healthy snacks If you can’t face the typical three meals a day, don’t worry about it. But rather than grazing on high-fat crisps and biscuits which can upset your gut and your blood sugar and leave you feeling exhausted, have some healthier options to turn to. A cracker with some cheese, sliced egg or hummus or a couple of sticky medjool dates will give you a healthy boost.

Soup Instead of reaching for the biscuits, why not try a cup of warming, vegetable soup? It’s full of easy-to-digest fibre and high in probiotics, both of which are great for the friendly bacteria in your gut. And if you opt for a veggie version, you’ll get lots of antioxidants such as beta carotene, riboflavin and resveratrol, too – you could add a swirl of cream or yoghurt to enrich it with more calories. I guarantee it will be more satisfying than a cup of tea!

SPOTLIGHT ON VEGANISM AND WEIGHT GAIN Plant-based protein is an essential element of a vegan diet, but it can be tempting to fill up on carbohydrates (especially in the winter months when we want their warmth and comfort), neglecting our protein needs in the process. We need protein if we’re to build muscle and put on weight in a healthy way. Unlike animal protein, no single plant protein contains the eight amino acids that can’t be made by our body and must therefore come from our food. But by eating a wide range of non-meat protein, there’s no reason not to follow a vegetarian or vegan diet and still put on weight if we need to. Hummus, beans (even baked beans), lentil dishes such as dahl, miso, tofu and nut butters are all go-to sources.

Campaigners To Apply for Core Participant Status at Pandemic Inquiry John’s Campaign and the Relatives & Residents Association will apply for Core Participant Status at the public inquiry into the UK Government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic: The campaign group and charity for families with loved ones in care homes have appointed law firm Leigh Day to make their case for representation at the inquiry, when it takes place. Leigh Day partners Emma Jones and Tessa Gregory, both solicitors in the human rights department, have written to the Prime Minister, Cabinet Office and Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to put them on notice that the organisations will be applying for Core Participant Status as soon as the process allows. They have also called for urgent moves to be made towards setting up the public inquiry, saying: “Time is of the essence. The average life expectancy in UK care homes is 24 months, 12 months for homes with nursing. There is an urgent need for the inquiry to get under way, to provide answers to those whose lives have been most severely affected and to learn lessons before it is too late.” In their legal letter, John’s Campaign and the Relatives & Residents Association request an urgent meeting with DHSC representatives to discuss preparations for the public inquiry, citing their experience and knowledge of the impact of the pandemic on families with loved ones in care homes, and also Leigh Day’s experience of public inquiries. The Relatives & Residents Association provides a national, specialist helpline for expert advice on care issues for older people, and their relatives and friends. John’s Campaign runs a UK-wide campaign supporting people separated from relatives and friends in health and care settings. The roles have given each organisation a unique insight into the impact of the handling of the pandemic on care homes residents and their families and both have been vocal throughout the past 16 months, challenging the DHSC about the suffering caused by draconian isolation measures. Through a series of legal challenges, John’s Campaign, led by Julia Jones and Nicci Gerrard, and represented by Tessa Gregory and Carolin Ott, have forced the DHSC to change guidance to care homes

in line with human rights laws. Both organisations have outstanding concerns about the continued requirement for people living in care homes to isolate for 14 days on return from a hospital stay despite the wholesale lifting of restrictions in the rest of society since 19 July, 2021. Helen Wildbore, director of the Relatives & Residents Association, who are represented by Emma Jones, said: “Our helpline has supported people hardest hit by the pandemic and measures taken to manage it. Through the shock of the care sector being neglected. Through the grief caused by the Government’s mismanagement of the virus. Through the anxiety of so many months of isolation and its devastating impact. Older people have been failed by the very systems designed to protect their rights. They continue to be failed and left behind in the most appalling way whilst the rest of the country gets back to normal. “Our work has given us unique insights into the experiences of people living at the sharp end of coronavirus. We will make sure their voices are heard at the public inquiry and push for the answers families are so desperate for. ” Julia Jones said: “A system has been exposed where people have no right to complain without risking eviction and where walls of secrecy can be erected inside which individuals feel imprisoned and where there is frightening scope for neglect and abuse. From the DHSC and Public Health England, through the care provider organisations, local authorities, commissioners etc, people in power seem shockingly unaware of the true situation as it impinges on individuals. This is a systemic failure which the public inquiry needs to expose and remedy. John’s Campaign feel we have an important contribution to make which should be heard without delay. Many older people living in care homes have no time to waste.” The call for John’s Campaign and the Relatives & Residents Association to be given Core Participant Status at the public inquiry into the UK Government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic is supported by Rights for Residents, a campaign organisation that works

closely with both groups. Jenny Morrison and Diane Mayhew of Rights For Residents said: “Our grass roots campaign is made up of the families of residents directly affected by the inhumane visiting restrictions imposed on care homes throughout the pandemic. We have witnessed first-hand the devastating consequences the restrictions have had. Relatives who have lost loved ones, after months of enforced separation, have been left with an unbearable legacy of guilt, as they were unable to say goodbye or comfort them at the end. “Family members are not just ‘visitors’, they offer an essential component of care that has been removed during the pandemic. From children separated from their parents, to young adults and the elderly, their distress has been unimaginable. The majority of residents are living with conditions that prevent them from understanding what is happening and why. Isolated for months in their own small rooms, they have been left feeling confused and abandoned. A public inquiry is crucial to ensure this human catastrophe never happens again.” Emma Jones said: “We know only too well that to ensure an Inquiry is a full, far-reaching and thorough as is required it must happen as soon as possible. Delays can lead to documents going missing and individuals’ memories fading. In addition, we know that much communication between government officials has taken place using private communications such as text messages – this Inquiry process needs to start now to ensure that the public can be given assurances that vital information cannot simply be deleted.” Tessa Gregory said: “Throughout the last 16 months those in care homes have suffered disproportionately both from the virus itself and the restrictions imposed. Lessons need to be learned and a public inquiry into the Government’s handling of the pandemic must look urgently and fearlessly at what went wrong to ensure history never repeats itself. If the inquiry is to be effective it is imperative that our clients, who have fought to ensure the rights of residents and relatives are protected, are allowed to play a full role in the inquiry process.”




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Perfect Ward IPC Poll Reports 63.2% Of Healthcare Respondents Feel ‘Unprepared’ For Winter Season Perfect Ward, a specialist provider of digital quality improvement and safety solutions, has announced the results of the company’s recent Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) poll. Over 120 attendees took part in the interactive poll which was conducted during a webinar hosted by healthcare and policy-making experts as well as a leading NHS Trust and customer of Perfect Ward. The webinar explored how to apply key lessons learnt from the pandemic to create an effective IPC strategy for this coming winter and the future. Participants were asked what methods they currently use to conduct IPC audits, the efficacy of those audits in preventing infection and about staff training. They were also invited to comment on their organisation’s preparedness for the additional pressures posed by influenza, norovirus and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) as the sector approaches the traditionally challenging winter season. Highlights of Perfect Ward’s IPC poll include: • Respondents were split almost equally when it comes to the effectiveness of their current IPC audits to prevent infection. Encouragingly, the majority (55.2%) thought they were effective, although a high percentage (44.8%) of respondents believed otherwise. • When asked if they feel prepared for winter from an IPC perspective, the results are cause for concern with the

majority of respondents (63.2%) saying they feel unprepared compared with 36.8% who do feel prepared. • Staff training is more evenly split with 57.6% of respondents claiming to be confident their staff have received sufficient training in IPC followed closely behind by 42.4% who believe their IPC training is lacking. • Although many of the respondents currently use Perfect Ward’s electronic solution to conduct their IPC audits (44.6%), it is surprising to discover that over one third (37.5% combined) still rely on ‘pen, paper and spreadsheets’ or ‘other’ methods for auditing while the remaining 17.9% of respondents use a web-based solution. Alan Birch, Chief Commercial Officer at Perfect Ward commented, “The health and social care sectors have risen to the challenges of the pandemic, although the results of our poll indicate the majority of organisations do not feel prepared to address the additional challenges this winter brings. This is a worrying trend that is likely to exacerbate already heightened levels of staff stress and fatigue and potentially put the health of staff and patients at risk. In a fast-moving, constantly changing environment, our digital quality improvement solution provides robust support needed by the frontline. While giving senior managers the hard evidence and confidence they need to drive continual improvements to patient and staff safety.”

Ravi Bains Calls for Social Care Commissioning Reform Ravi Bains, social care entrepreneur and Founder of the Contollo Care Group, has outlined his vision to improve the social care system in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Calling for a new commissioning framework of national minimum standards that allows for regional variation, Bains highlights the need to address local pressures while meeting robust standards of quality. Bains is calling for contracts to be awarded on the basis of the quality of care provided, with careful consideration paid to the concept of best value beyond price. Under a new commissioning system, social care contracts would not be awarded on lowest cost, but on the provider’s ability to sustainably provide excellent care, with the potential of linking contracts to quality indicators such as CQC ratings and customer feedback. In the UK, a fifth of all social care providers’ services are rated as “Requires improvement” or “Inadequate” which must be urgently addressed. By establishing a national minimum standard and national accountability, Government can work with Local Authorities to address systemic problems while developing the provision of services available in the region. Bains points to the Scottish model of homecare as an example of best practice, with multiple agencies working together with providers to deliver high quality care. Under the current system, Bains has witnessed a national care provider with a user satisfaction rating of 97% lose a major contract to a company with a much lower user satisfaction rating. The deciding factor

was a 10p difference in the hourly rate in their service proposals. Bains argues awarding contracts on this basis will end up increasing costs for the Authority in question, as services with a lower CQC score are likely to require more monitoring. It is time that we award contracts on the ability to deliver exceptional care rather than the ability to save small amounts of money. Rather than being anti-small provider, Bains believes this approach would be anti-poor provider, allowing social care to place more priority on good quality and avoid a dangerous race to the bottom. This will allow the guiding principle behind social care commissioning to be a passion for quality rather than price. Bains also highlights the need for Government and Local Authorities to continue to consult with social care providers and take advantage of grass-roots expertise to create a more targeted approach. Commenting on his vision for social care commissioning reform, Ravi Bains said: “When it comes to social care commissioning, a one size fits all approach simply will not work. An adequately funded, uniform approach to commissioning must be put in place to avoid a dangerous race to the bottom. “A social care commissioning framework of national minimum standards that is led by experts who live and breathe social care will be transformative to our society. We need to start asking big questions of what we want health and social care to look like for our loved ones now and in the future. “The time is now for a multi-agency, multi-faceted national approach to commissioning where quality comes first.”

HC-One Care Homes Enjoy The Summer Sunshine Residents at HC-One care homes across the UK have been making the most of the glorious weather during the summer months by spending time in the gardens, having summer parties, barbecues and afternoon tea. At Brooklands care home in Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire, Residents and Colleagues created their own Hawaiian Day. The home put on their own entertainment and set the scene for Residents to feel like they had taken their very own trip to Hawaii. The sun was shining and the garden was decorated to perfection with numerous bright colourful tropical flowers, inflatables and paddling pools. Music was playing in the background, with Residents requesting their favourite songs to be played so they could sing along and dance to the music. Residents and Colleagues got in the spirit and dressed up in Hawaiian attire with grass skirts and floral garlands being worn. Residents were treated to a selection of ice lollies, choc ices and cold drinks to keep hydrated and refreshed whilst enjoying the warm weather. Home Manager at Brooklands Care Home, Catherine Brooks said: “It is so lovely to see such happy, smiling faces!” A spontaneous barbecue was hosted by Colleagues for Residents at Overdene House Care Home in Winsford, Cheshire whilst the weather was good. Everyone enjoyed sitting out in the sunshine and soaking in vitamin D whilst the barbecue got underway, with sizzling and scrumptious treats served for Residents to tuck into. Residents enjoyed socialising, chatting to each other and being in each other’s company. Residents enjoyed a selection of food on offer, served by Colleagues, Gary Peach and Hannah Dineley including burgers, hot dogs and vegetarian options, as well as a small tipple of choice to accompany the food. Home Manager at Overdene House Care Home, Cath Burns commented: “I loved watching everyone chatting and smiling!” At Market Lavington Care Home in Devizes, Wiltshire, the home has been participating in a range of activities over the past month around the theme of holidays. As part of the activities, Residents have enjoyed creating holiday themed pictures including those of icecreams and beaches whilst music was playing in the background including Cliff Richard’s classic song ‘Summer Holiday’ which Residents enjoyed singing along to. In addition, Residents also liked participating in the reminiscence activity sessions where stories about holidays Residents had been on as a child were shared with each other.

A memory about the British Rail posters of the 1950s came up as a topic of conversation and Wellbeing Coordinator, Riaz Ali, printed off copies of the posters which helped trigger some lovely memories for Residents and also helped with inspiring some of their artwork. Riaz Ali, Wellbeing Coordinator at Market Lavington Care Home, stated: “It was lovely hearing the stories of past holidays which Residents had been on, and the, sometimes hilarious, occurrences that had happened during those times.” Residents thoroughly enjoyed spending time together, sharing their childhood holiday memories and singing along to a variety of songs. At Shepton Mallet in Somerset, Residents enjoyed a beach party at The Glen Care Home. The beach party consisted of a water pool, sandpit, a bubble machine and a selection of decorations. A spread of wonderful treats was available for Residents to choose from including sandwiches, cakes and ice-cream, as well as drinks such as a glass of Pimms or Bucks Fizz. Residents were thrilled with the variety of activities they could get involved in including hook-a-duck, bubble catching and beach volleyball. Residents also loved dipping their toes in the water pool to cool off. Barbara Park, a Resident at The Glen Care Home commented: “I have thoroughly enjoyed myself, so much fun!” Overall, the beach party was a great success and was filled with lots of laughter and smiles. At Daneside Mews Care Home in Cheshire, Residents and Colleagues enthusiastically participated in an Alice in Wonderland themed party. The themed party was complete with entertainment, a picnic and a visit from the ice-cream van. Residents enjoyed afternoon tea, dancing and singing along to music, chatting and laughing with each other. In Arnold in Nottingham, at the Beeches Care Home, summer got off to a flying start with Residents and Colleagues enjoying a fabulous party. Colleagues and Residents dressed up in summery fancy-dress costumes, such as hula skirts and garlands, and prizes were awarded to the best outfit. Lots of fun was had throughout the day, with everyone laughing and smiling. A variety of games were played including hook-a-duck. Terri Brindley, Home Manager at the Beeches Care Home, stated: “The Residents said they loved playing hook-a-duck and receiving prizes. What a nice day to remember and it was brilliant seeing everyone together and having fun on this special day.”


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Alternative Approaches to Arthritis Symptoms By Dr Basil Almahdi, (MBBS, FRCA, FFPMRCA), Consultant in Pain Medicine and Prescriber at Integro Medical Clinics (www.integroclinics.com) Arthritis is a very common condition which affects more than 10 million people of all ages, throughout the UK, though it is most common in older people. The condition causes pain and inflammation of the joints and can be debilitating if severe. There are several types of arthritis, but the most common forms are rheumatoid arthritis, which initially affects the outer covering of the joints and osteoarthritis which first affects the smooth cartilage lining of the joints. Rarer forms of arthritis include psoriatic arthritis, lupus and others. At colder and wetter times of the year, symptoms of arthritis can be exacerbated. At Integro Medical Clinics, we are experts in helping our patients to relieve the pain of their arthritis symptoms, using cannabis medicines as a treatment option. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and affects nearly 9 million people. It generally develops post mid-40’s or later. It affects the smooth cartilage lining of the joint and makes movement painful and feel stiff. Once the cartilage lining starts to roughen and thin out, the muscles, tendons and ligaments may have to work harder, causing further swelling, inflammation and pain around the joint. Severe loss of cartilage leads to bone rubbing on bone, which alters the shape of the joint and can change the shape of the joint. You normally find this type of arthritis in hands, hips, knees and spine. Rheumatoid arthritis affects over 400,000 people in the UK, with women 3 times more likely to be affected than men. In this type of arthritis, the body’s immune system targets the affected joint, which leads to inflammation, pain and swelling. This can lead to the weakening of cartilage and then bone, and change the joint shape, sometimes

causing the direction of the fingers to drift sideways. Those who suffer rheumatoid arthritis can also develop problems with other tissues and organs. Cannabis medicines not only have an anti-inflammatory affect but in this form of arthritis they can actually rebalance the bodies endocannabinoid system and help manage the immune system response.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF ARTHRITIS?

ment in your joints for as long as possible. Movement is a key factor in managing arthritis pain.

SPLINTS Specially fitted splints will often be fitted by an occupational therapist or physiotherapist and can help support your joints, easing pain and inflammation. There are two different types of splints, resting and working. Resting splints are to help your joints rest whilst working splints designed to support your joints whilst you use them making certain tasks less painful.

The symptoms of arthritis can vary greatly, depending on the specific type of arthritis you have. This is why it is important to get an accurate diagnosis so that we can manage your symptoms you in the most appropriate and effective way possible. Some early symptoms can be recognised as the following: • Warm, red skin over the affected joint area • Joint pain, stiffness or tenderness • Swollen joints • Restricted movements of the joints • Weakness or muscle wastage • Generalised pain and an inability to move freely

Acupuncture seems to relieve pain by diverting or changing the painful sensations that are sent to your brain from damaged tissues and by stimulating your body’s own pain-relieving hormones (endorphins and encephalins). This pain relief may only last a short time when you begin treatment, but repeated treatment (usually weekly for six or eight sessions) can bring long-term benefit, often for several months. If the pain returns, then more acupuncture may help for another few months.

COMMON TREATMENTS FOR ARTHRITIS

CBT

As there are several forms of arthritis, it is important to obtain an accurate diagnosis before undergoing any treatment for this condition. However, some of the commonly used arthritis medications (some of these medications can induce unpleasant side-effects) include the following: • Painkillers • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs • Counterirritants • Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs • Biologic response modifiers • Corticosteroids

Talking therapy called cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can actually improve arthritis pain. In CBT, therapist may help patient work toward restructuring his thoughts about pain to help him stop feeling helpless and catastrophizing about the symptoms and replacing those thoughts with healthier, more rational thoughts to help him cope.

ALTERNATIVE TREATMENTS Non-pharmacological interventions can be a very valuable addition to any symptom management regime for those living with arthritis.

PHYSIOTHERAPY Physiotherapists can help you create a programme of specific exercises to achieve and maintain as greater range of dexterity and move-

ACUPUNCTURE

CANNABIS MEDICINES AND ARTHRITIS SYMPTOMS There is good evidence that cannabis medicines can reduce inflammation in the joints as well as providing effective relief from the pain associated with arthritis. Cannabis Medicines can be effective in the management of arthritis symptoms, which can then enable people to feel more able to engage in long term management strategies such as physiotherapy that may have been avoided due to pain levels being unmanageable. Combining pharmacological and non-interventional management strategies are often the best way of managing your arthritis symptoms. Working closely with your healthcare professionals with the goal of improving quality of life overall.

Lilian Faithfull Care’s Staff and Residents Make Their Gardens Bloom Lilian Faithfull Care’s ‘Garden in Bloom’ competition is approaching judging day, with an award winning garden designer visiting their gardens on Thursday 12 August. Gloucestershire Charity’s staff, residents and day care guests, across their five care homes and two day care hubs, are really enjoying their time together in the gardens, creating their winning patch. The competition is to design and create a patch in their garden using everyone’s talents, skills and teamwork. The project is encouraging innovation and different elements of conservation; including wonderful plants, creative upcycling, and encouraging more birds, bees and butterflies into their beautiful gardens. It also includes an edible element, with suggestions from their catering teams of vegetables and herbs to grow for future menus. Some are being very competitive with trying to grow the largest vegetables. Lilian Faithfull Care is a Charity and has provided care, support and a ‘home for life’ to the elderly in Gloucestershire for 75 years. They offer day care, respite, residential and nursing care, with specialist knowledge of dementia care and end of life care. The judges will be local award winning garden designer Martyn Wilson, of Wilson Garden Design and Lilian Faithfull Care’s new Care Quality Manager, Rita Harris who inspired and introduced the project. Lilian Faithfull Care are very excited to have Martyn as the judge. Martyn has designed several award winning show gardens including coveted Royal Horticultural Society Gold medals and has featured on BBC Gardeners’ World on BBC2. When invited, Martyn commented, “I’m delighted to support their Charity and help with judging. The garden project sounds like a wonderful initiative. It’s brilliant to hear that residents and staff are so engaged with their gardens. Understanding and appreciation of the importance of gardens and outdoor spaces for health and wellbeing has really come to the forefront in the pandemic.”

Their Garden in Bloom competition has brought together residents and staff to get green fingered and spend time together outdoors, including staff across all job roles – Carers, Activity Co-ordinators, Domestic, Catering, Maintenance and Management. Rita Harris commented, “There are ways that everyone can contribute – whether indoors, by helping with planning, research and seed sowing, or outdoors with planting, watering and nurturing. Those with garden experience have taught those that have not gardened before. Those that are creative have helped design. There is a wellspring of knowledge and experience amongst our residents, day guests and staff.” Rita continued, “Thank you so much to the local businesses and families’ of our guests and residents, that have kindly donated gardening items and their time, to help the gardens bloom.” Each of the homes and day care hubs sit within beautiful grounds and gardens, which give a lovely safe space for residents and day guests to enjoy. The gardening clubs are one of the most popular activities in the Charity and the gardening competition has given a new focus for the ongoing interest of residents, day guests and staff alike. Gardening has many benefits including improved mental wellbeing, increased physical activity and a great way to bring people together. As the care sector steers its way out of what has been surreal times during Covid-19, this garden project gives their staff and those they care for, the chance to have some fun together in their lovely green spaces. You can follow their garden project progress via their social media pages @Lilian Faithfull and read more about their Charity at www.lilianfaithfull.co.uk

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

Full integration with Well Pharmacy making data transfer more efficient and improving communication between the local pharmacy and home. Reduction in medication errors using pro-active alerts, alarms and best practice workflows to make sure medication compliance and safety for residents. Greater visibility and compliance - provides all staff and management with a clear picture of medication administration.

Ben Smith, Care Homes Sales Manager for Well Pharmacy said: “We are pleased to highlight Access’ Medication Management solution to over 350 care homes we serve across the UK. At Well Pharmacy we are always looking for new ways to help and support our care home customers. Patient and resident safety is our number one priority and we’re pleased to be working with The Access Group offer new solutions to give residents the best possible care.” Steve Sawyer, Managing Director, Access Group’s Health and Social Care Division said: “At Access, we pride ourselves on supporting care staff to provide the highest quality of care to their residents. Access Medication Management reduces the risk of medication errors, while giving everyone in a care home more time back to interact with residents or focus on work that will improve care, capacity, and occupancy at their homes. We're proud to be working with one of the largest pharmacy chains in the UK, who share our vision of using software in health and social care, to better manage all medication processes, encouraging fellow organisations so that this becomes a standard way of working across all UK care homes.” For more information, about Well Pharmacy’s Care Home Service please contact: carehomes@well.co.uk For more information about Access’ Medication Management software visit: www.theaccessgroup.com/health-social-care/care-management-software/medication-management/



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End of Free Movement: The Latest Battle For The Social Care Sector By Jordan Glackin, partner and healthcare expert, and Tijen Ahmet, legal director and business immigration specialist at law firm, Shakespeare Martineau (www.shma.co.uk)

Recruitment and retention have always been a challenge for the social care sector. Finding the right people with the necessary skills and resilience to thrive in what can be a high-stress environment is an uphill battle, one that will only be exacerbated by the end of free movement. With mounting administration levels and costs, the sector faces an uncertain future. Workers from the European Economic Area (EEA) have been a lifeline in the past, and now further barriers have been created for those abroad considering a job in social care. However, as well as causing difficulties for applicants, the new immigration scheme has considerably increased the amount of administration for care home operators. Applicants must now be sponsored by their employer in order to gain a work visa, meaning care homes will have to apply for and maintain a sponsor licence. These must be maintained and renewed every four years, so operators must ensure that they are compliant with their obligations and duties when recruiting non-British staff to avoid scrutiny from the Home Office,

UKVI sponsor team. A sponsor licence also comes with a fee. Add this on top of the Government visa fees, which for a single applicant working for a medium to large organisation could cost a minimum of £5,500, and it becomes a substantial investment for employers. There is also the issue of the minimum salary threshold for work visas. With the current general threshold for skilled workers set at £25,600, many roles within the social care sector will fall under this figure and as a result, care homes may have to increase salaries in order to fill the gaps. These financial considerations raise the question around whether it is worth sponsoring someone from outside the UK, especially when it cannot be guaranteed how long a worker will stay in the role for. To counter this, care homes might have to introduce a minimum employment period to ensure staff don’t simply use the sector as a short-term stepping stone. Although the Government introduced a specific Health and Care Worker visa to reduce these issues in 2020, it is largely targeted towards those who have an NHS job offer rather than those entering the private sector. The vast majority of care workers will not be eligible for this visa, and care homes will have no choice but to sponsor them, if they cannot source UK labour. However, the Shortage Occupation List for healthcare may provide much-needed support for the sector as it does currently for social workers and nurses. Job roles that are placed on this list mean applicants can trade points against a salary that is up to 20% below the relevant minimum salary threshold, enabling skilled workers to be hired without having to increase wages. This list was last updated on 4 March 2021 and is updated annually, so it’s vital that any areas facing extreme recruitment difficulties are flagged to the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) which makes recommendations to the Government for roles to be included on the Shortage Occupation List. Until more is done to make the sector more attractive to UK jobseekers, it is likely that foreign workers will remain an essential part of the

workforce. Although the Government has launched a recruitment drive focusing on adult social care, it does not address the core issues that put people off entering the sector, such as low pay and high stress. The introduction of mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations from 11 November 2021 is also unlikely to help. While the reasoning behind mandatory vaccinations is understandable, it does risk hindering recruitment and retention even further. Many care homes have already started the consultation process, and some staff are refusing to have the vaccine. Employers in the care sector can rely on a legislative basis for dismissing staff who refuse to have the vaccine, but this leaves them in a tricky situation. On the other hand, the NHS is not requiring staff to be vaccinated, prompting an influx of workers from the private sector. As a result, key staff are being lost and replacing them will not be an easy process. Aside from increased difficulty regarding recruiting and retaining staff, mandatory vaccinations will also lead to further administrative tasks for care home operators. Although contractual changes may not necessarily be needed, robust policies must be created to clearly identify requirements for workers and visiting professionals. More detail is needed on whether NHS staff entering care homes will have to be vaccinated to do so. Foreign applicants could also be faced with a number of issues because of these vaccination rules. Every country has its own vaccination process, so there will need to be an international vetting system. There is the potential for Home Office-approved clinics to be set up in each country where visa applicants can get a certificate to confirm that they’ve been vaccinated, similarly to the tuberculosis testing process. However, this would be another cost for the employer or the individual. The social care sector plays an essential role is looking after society’s most vulnerable, but at present, the sector itself is plagued with vulnerability. In order to fill the gaps, care home operators must ensure they understand what the new immigration system requires from them, to avoid further difficulties later down the line.

Care Home Residents’ Lives Transformed with Specialised Dementia Activity Programme RESIDENTS with dementia living at an Edinburgh care home are benefitting from a tailored activity programme which is transforming their quality of life and care, enabling them to live as fulfilling lives as possible. Since opening in 2018, Cramond Residence has been passionate about creating a safe space for those living with dementia and other related illnesses in a way that enables residents to continue living a fulfilling life in a homely environment and feeling part of a close community. The home provides a range of activities specifically designed to give residents with dementia a richer and more satisfying life, with specialist facilities and trained staff on hand to provide support and relief. Many of the activities include a sensory or reminiscing element which helps residents remember special moments and stories from throughout their life. Ross Bijak, Clinical Care Manager at the 74-bedroom specialist care home, said: “There are a host of activities on offer for residents to get involved with throughout the month, and every activity can be tailored to specific interests and hobbies. “For example, we recently held an art reminiscing therapy session and asked residents to communicate how they were feeling through their artwork. “Physical activities like these help residents who sometimes can’t find the words to discuss a topic, but are able to communicate their emotions and feelings through painting or drawing – while also supporting

Holding Fire Doors Open Legally Fire doors, which are part of fire safety provision within care settings can pose a barrier to the mobility and wellbeing of residents. Residents can feel isolated and alone as the closing action of the fire door closer fitted to their room door doesn’t allow them to keep their door open. They are unable to interact with staff and other residents as they walk past their room, which can impact on their mental wellbeing. Gangways with fire doors and closers are also hard to manoeuvre if you are frail. Don’t be tempted, though, to use an object or door wedge to hold fire doors open, this is a breach of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and you could find yourself facing a heavy fine or even a custodial sentence. However, there are ways of legally holding fire doors open, which enhance the independent mobility of the elderly without compromising your fire safety integrity. Certified fire door holders

mental stimulation and general wellbeing.” The care home doesn’t believe in a one size fits all approach, opting instead for a tailor-made programme of activities based on an individual’s interests, care and wellbeing needs. Ross added: “We look to create a natural environment throughout the building with a wide variety of dementia services on offer, from bespoke activity planners and meal service options to the layout of the home.” Activities such as reminiscing sessions are not only helpful to residents, but also to staff members who find they provide insights into each resident, whilst building relationships and understanding exactly how residents prefer to be cared for. Ashley Stapleton, Care Assistant said: “Activities such as reminiscing sessions are extremely valuable to understand each resident as an individual and can aid in focusing on person centred care. “By obtaining a deeper knowledge on life history we can assist in developing better relationships between residents, staff and family members, to ensure residents continue to lead an enriched and fulfilled stay at Cramond Residence.” The home trains all staff members in dementia care– even those who may not be providing direct care – as well as offering support and coping techniques to help family and friends.

and retainers can be fitted to fire doors, enabling them to be pinned open. 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 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 allow your fire door to close, preventing the spread of fire. Fitting Dorgards on fire doors along corridors will empower your residents to independently move from one area to another, increasing their independence as well as contributing to good mental health. To ensure that you can fit the right type of fire door retainer to suit your needs Dorgard have developed a range of products. Dorgard original is best suited to small or medium settings with low to normal noise levels, whereas Dorgard SmartSound can provide the right solution for noisier environments where the enhanced sound recognition is beneficial. Dorgard Pro offers the ability to manage up to 500 fire doors and gives you a ‘one glance’ check system, ideal for large premises. Holding fore doors open gives you the added benefit of increasing ventilation as well as reducing common touch points, which can prevent the spread of viruses. If you would like to find out more about Dorgard or 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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New Social Care Talent And Leadership Development Programme ‘Now Care’ Would Be Strongly Welcomed By Social Care Sector, Study Finds A new feasibility study commissioned by the CareTech Foundation has shown an “overwhelmingly positive” response from across the social care sector to a disruptive new programme, ‘Now Care’, to address the recruitment and retention crisis in social care, the need to attract highcalibre talent to the sector and, significantly, address leadership skills to instil longterm change from within. The feasibility study, commissioned from Transform Society and produced in association with the University of Edinburgh, provides a powerful case for the proposed new scheme. The study has demonstrated both the demand for such a new scheme and the appetite of the sector to support its development. There is real excitement that this proposition can make a signal impact on the social care sector. We have heard a very clear message from the very many people with whom we have engaged that this is a proposal that the social care sector needs. Professor David Grayson CBE, who was Chair of the Advisory Group assembled to support the feasibility study, said: “This is an exciting and powerful opportunity to bring together supply and demand for talent in a new and innovative way, embracing technology, leadership training and mentored future leaders to make much needed changes to the social care system” ’Now Care’ will follow a similar approach of previously successful Transform Society alliance members schemes such as ’Teach First’ and ’Police Now’, which appear in the Top 40 of the Top 100 Graduate

Employers, recruit over 3,000 graduates a year and have become a magnet to the UK’s top graduates due to their focus on training, development and support. Dame Julia Cleverdon DCVO CBE, Vice Patron Teach First said: “ My experience working in persuading graduates to come to Teach First when I chaired the charity and now seeing other alliance members involved in other areas of public service is that you can successfully change a generation’s view of front facing public sector leaders in professions never previously considered by top talent in the past.” In the light of the positive outcome of the study, the trustees of the CareTech Foundation have agreed to incubate the scheme’s development from within the charity and have committed in principle funding for three years, working to secure the support required to enable ’Now Care’ to recruit its first cohort of new leaders in 2022. Jonathan Freeman MBE, CEO of the CareTech Foundation, stated: “The recruitment and retention crisis in the sector requires bold thinking to address properly. Increasing funding to support the recruitment of frontline care workers without also addressing structural issues in the sector that feed huge staff turnover is unsustainable. ‘Now Care’ has the potential to transform leadership across the social care sector and we will now look to build a coalition of supporters to establish this exciting new scheme as soon as possible.” Reports from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and research by The King’s Fund make clear that quality mentored training and a supported career path is not only attractive to individuals but is beneficial to the place of work, the sector and to society. Many such reports highlight leadership training as a key ingredient of workforce development, supporting the need for the ‘Now Care’ scheme. The feasibility report considers that ’Now Care’ has the potential to make a significant contribution both directly and indirectly by signalling that the sector itself is innovating and improving.

Southgate Care Home Receives ‘Good’ Rating and Looks Forward To ‘New Era’ Hugh Myddelton House in Southgate passed a recent Care Quality Commission inspection with an overall “Good” rating after being praised for a responsive, safe, effective, caring and well-led service. The CQC inspected the home on 15 June 2021 (the report was released on 15 July 21) and rated the home, run by Barchester Healthcare, as “Good” overall. The report stated that there were, “People told us staff were kind and caring and they felt safe. We received positive feedback from health and social care professionals regarding the kindness of the staff and their competence in providing care.” The report went on to say “People were supported to have maximum

choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible and in their best interests,” In celebration of the rating and to thank each member of the team for their contributions to the home, each team member was presented by Managing Director Natasha Lazovic with a £100 gift voucher in appreciation of their hard work. Ramona Stanciu, General Manager at Hugh Myddelton House said: “We are delighted that Hugh Myddelton House was rated ‘Good’ overall following the CQC’s most recent inspection. The team at Hugh Myddelton House always strive to provide the best possible quality care for everyone who lives at the home.”

Reducing Antibiotic Use In Primary Care May Be Insufficient Alone To Curtail Antimicrobial Resistance Strategies to reduce antibiotic prescribing in primary care are insufficient alone to halt the rise in drug resistant E. coli infections in England, a new report concludes. The first evaluation of NHS England’s Quality Premium intervention on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases. The Quality Premium scheme was introduced in 2015 and rewarded groups of general practitioners (GPs) for improvements in quality of care, including reducing inappropriate antibiotic prescribing in primary care. Led by researchers at Imperial College London, the new report finds that while the intervention achieved a downward step change in antibiotic prescribing, it only led to a modest reduction in antibiotic resistant infections from Escherichia coli (E. coli). The study’s authors conclude that a single intervention in one sector is not enough; a more radical, multi-sectoral approach is needed to tackle the growing threat of AMR. AMR is a substantial and growing health issue, which globally causes around 700,000 deaths a year. E. coli is of particular concern because of its widespread resistance to antibiotics. It is the most common drug resistant infection, and in the UK more than half of drug-resistant bacterial blood stream infections, which can lead to sepsis, are caused by E. coli. Antibiotic use in primary care is associated with increased risk of antimicrobial resistant infection and reducing antibiotic prescribing in this setting has been a cornerstone of antibiotic stewardship activity globally. In England over 70 per cent of antibiotics are prescribed in primary care, and many are considered inappropriate. This increases the chances of bacteria evolving and becoming resistant, so initiatives have tried to educate and persuade prescribers of antibiotics to follow evidence-based prescribing. The Global Digital Health unit team at Imperial College London, led by Dr Céire Costelloe, and colleagues linked data from 6,882 English general practices with Public Health England’s (PHE) national surveillance of bacterial infections over the six-year period from January 2013 to December 2018 when the NHS Quality Premium was in operation. They looked at prescribing of the five most common antibiotics and examined resistance trends in E. coli infections, before and after the implementation of the intervention. Dr Céire Costelloe, Reader and Director of the Global Digital Health Unit at Imperial College London says: “We found that although the NHS England Quality Premium on AMR succeeded in reducing broad spectrum antibiotic prescribing, resistance among E coli causing bacteraemia remains on an upward trajectory, despite an initial attenuation. This highlights the fact that a single intervention alone is not enough to tackle the growing threat of AMR.

“A multifactor, multisectoral, collaborative and global approach is needed, taking into consideration antibiotic use across the entire healthcare economy, in combination with a wider, ‘One Health’ approach, which involves efforts that work nationally and globally to improve health for people, animals and the environment.” GP practices in England prescribed an average of 207 broad-spectrum antibiotic items per 100,000 patients per month before implementation of the Quality premium. A 13 per cent reduction in prescribing rate was observed immediately following implementation of the Quality Premium, which corresponds to a reduction of 26 items per 100,000 patients in the English population. This effect was sustained such that by the end of the study period there was a 57 per cent reduction in rate of antibiotic prescribing observed, compared to predicted rates if the intervention had not occurred. In the lead up to the implementation of the Quality Premium, a monthly average of 275 resistant E.Coli isolates, per 1000 isolates tested against broad-spectrum antibiotics, were reported to Public Health England. A 5 per cent reduction in resistance rate was observed immediately following the implementation of the Quality Premium, which corresponds to a reduction of 14 resistant E.Coli isolates per 1000 isolates tested. Although this reduction was sustained until the end of the study period, E.Coli resistance remains on an upward, albeit slower, trajectory. Co-author Shirin Aliabadi, a research postgraduate in the Global Digital Health unit at Imperial College London, and NHS Pharmacist says: “Antimicrobial resistance is predicted to kill 10 million people per year by 2050. Naturally, the nation’s efforts and resources have shifted to responding to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis but our findings suggest that we must nevertheless consider the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance, which can be a viewed as a silent pandemic.” Co-author Professor Azeem Majeed, GP, and Head of the Department of Primary Care and Public Health, Imperial College London, says: “My colleagues in primary health settings have done the right thing and responded to the focus on their prescribing of antibiotics, but to combat the devastating impacts of antimicrobial resistance, we need global, coordinated efforts and new drugs to treat resistant infections. If the COVID19 pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we can move fast in the face of large-scale epidemics. If we apply some of the recent lessons learned and work together, we can achieve a great deal in a short time. I hope this is possible.”



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3 in 4 UK Adults Receive Both Doses of a Covid-19 Vaccine More than three quarters of adults in the UK have now received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, as the public continues to do what it can to protect themselves, their loved ones and their community. A total of 86,780,455 doses have been administered in the UK, with 47,091,889 people receiving a first dose (89%) and 39,688,566 people receiving both doses (75%). Data from Public Health England (PHE) shows COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective against hospitalisation from the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant. The analysis shows the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is 96% effective and the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is 92% effective against hospitalisation after two doses. The latest data from Public Health England and Cambridge University shows that around 60,000 deaths, 22 million infections and 66,900 hospitalisations have been prevented by the vaccines. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “Our incredible vaccine rollout has now provided vital protection against the virus to three quarters of all UK adults. This is a huge national achievement, which we should all be proud of. “It’s so important that those who haven’t been vaccinated come forward as soon as possible to book their jab - to protect themselves, protect their loved ones and allow us all to enjoy our freedoms safely.” Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Three in four adults across the UK have now had both doses of the vaccine, which is incredible and a testament to the fantastic work of the NHS, volunteers and everyone involved in the rollout. “Getting two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine is the key to enjoying a host of new freedoms safely – whether that be to enjoy a trip abroad with family or a night out with friends – as we continue to build our wall of protection. “The vaccines are allowing us to reconnect with the things we love, but more than that, they’re protecting the people we love too. “Please make sure to come forward for your jab if you haven’t already as soon as possible.” The government is working closely with the NHS to make it as easy as possible to get a vaccine, including through ‘grab a jab’ pop-up vaccine sites across the country – for example, at London-based club Heaven last weekend (Sunday 8 August) as well as football stadiums and festivals up and down the country.

People can make an appointment through the national booking system either online or by calling 119, and can use a vaccination centre, walk-in centre, or one of the pop-up vaccinations centres that are now in shopping centres, workplaces and high streets. All adults in the UK are able to get their second doses after eight weeks. This will mean every adult has the chance to have two doses by mid-September. People will be required to prove they’ve had two jabs to enter nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather by the end of September. From 16 August, double vaccinated people will also no longer be required to self-isolate if they are identified as a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case. People will continue to be advised to take a PCR test to detect the virus and variants of concern and anyone who tests positive will still be legally required to self-isolate, irrespective of their vaccination status. The government announced that double vaccinated frontline NHS and social care staff in England who have been told to self-isolate will be permitted to attend work in exceptional circumstances and replaced by testing mitigations. A limited number of critical workers may also in exceptional circumstances be able to leave self-isolation to attend work if deemed a close contact and informed to do so by their employer. Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “Today marks a historic day for the incredible vaccination programme, with three quarters of UK adults having received both doses of a life-

saving COVID-19 vaccine. “It’s been phenomenal to see first-hand the enthusiasm of the British public for the vaccines, which have now prevented over 66,900 hospitalisations and saved at least 60,000 lives. “Getting the jab is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones – I urge everyone to get booked in and get vaccinated as soon as possible.” The UK government secured access to hundreds of millions of doses of the most promising COVID-19 vaccines early on behalf of the entire UK, crown dependencies and overseas territories. The UK’s medicine’s regulator, the MHRA, was the first in the world to approve the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccines, allowing the rapid deployment of vaccines across the country and ensuring the UK has one of the fastest vaccination programmes in the world. Vaccinated people are far less likely to get COVID-19 with symptoms and even more unlikely to get serious COVID-19, to be admitted to hospital, or to die from it and there is growing evidence that they are less likely to pass the virus to others. Dr Nikita Kanani Medical Director for Primary Care and Deputy for the NHS Covid-19 Programme, said: “NHS staff have pulled out all the stops to get the lifesaving Covid jab to people as soon as possible and their exceptional hard work rolling out the biggest and fastest vaccination programme in history has meant that three quarters of all adults are now fully vaccinated, including 95 percent people aged 50 and over in England. “Getting the vaccine is the single most important step you can take to protect yourself and others, with hundreds of convenient vaccination sites across the country including pop up clinics in the park and at festivals and walk-in locations too and so if you haven’t already, I would urge you to come forward today and join the tens of millions of people who have already been vaccinated.” YouGov polling also shows the UK continues to be one of the top nations where people are willing to have a COVID-19 vaccine or have already been vaccinated. ONS data published on 9 August shows that more than 9 in 10 (96%) adults reported positive sentiment towards the vaccine, and vaccine hesitancy for those aged 18 to 21 has almost halved from 9% to 5%. The statistics also showed hesitancy has decreased for those aged 16 and 17 from 14% to 11%.

Lisa Returns To Boost Wellbeing In Dementia Care Residents at a specialist dementia care home in Bridgwater, Somerset, are benefitting from the focused attention of a new wellbeing co-ordinator who loves the home so much that after a short break working elsewhere she just couldn’t keep away. Lisa Priddice worked on the activities team and as a health care assistant at Avalon Nursing Home from 2015 to 2018 and then took a break during which she worked as an activity facilitator at Musgrove Hospital and had a baby. And now Lisa is back at Avalon in the newly-created role of wellbeing co-ordinator, bringing with her accumulated experience of what feeds into positive wellbeing thanks to her time working at Musgrove. Lisa said: “Coming back to Avalon having worked on the elderly wards at Musgrove for two years, I’m now able to provide enhanced care to those residents who really need that extra support in order to live an enriched and fulfilling life. “I’m loving being back here and find it so fulfilling to support our residents in maintaining a healthy level of exercise, and a good diet through structured activity time. “Avalon’s wellbeing programme is all person-centred and specifically aimed at those who are showing a decline. “I work closely with the activities team and nurses to find fun and engaging activities involving food, drink and exercise because these are at the heart of our residents’ continued wellbeing.” The wellbeing programme Lisa has developed for Avalon has both ‘active’ and ‘inactive’ threads. This

means those residents who enjoy doing in activities are supported to do so, while ‘inactive participation’ – that is just observing and feeling part of an activity without actually doing it – is also encouraged. Lisa said: “Although a resident’s cognitive decline may mean they are no longer able to join in with an activity, that doesn’t necessarily mean there isn’t great enjoyment for them in being socially included as observers, and sometimes commentators. “One example is the weekly cooking sessions we have restarted, which are proving very popular, with residents included in the activity in various different ways. “Some have enjoyed making items such as cheese straws, tarts, Danish pastries and cakes. “Others prefer to focus on the prep and organization of the activity, while there are those who prefer the cleaning up afterwards, whether that’s wiping tables or putting away the ingredients. “One of our gents likes to deliver the finished item to the chef in the kitchen. “Residents love to try different foods which are appealing to the eye. And it's also rewarding for them to enjoy food they have prepared themselves and sit down with a nice cup of tea afterwards.”

Elderly Nursing Nome Resident Forced To Move Because Of Funding Blunders A Devon centenarian was threatened with eviction from her nursing home because of unpaid fees, despite both her family and the council paying for her care. A Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman investigation found the woman, who had dementia, had been living at the Swimbridge House Nursing home near Barnstaple and had been paying for her care privately. But when her funding ran low, the council stepped in to help pay for her care. At the same time, the woman’s family had paid in advance for her care, and for more than a month the nursing home received double payments. An assessment of the woman’s needs found she required a 24 hour placement and she should remain at the home. The council started paying for the woman’s care, but at a lower rate than the woman had been paying. The care provider was not happy with this reduction and wanted the council to agree a top-up. The family decided the nursing home was no longer affordable, so asked the council to find a less expensive option. The council provided details of other homes which were affordable and had vacancies, but the council did not carry out a risk assessment of moving the woman to another home. Because the council was not paying the home as much as the placement had cost the woman privately, the nursing home gave the family notice to quit claiming her account was in deficit. The woman moved to a new care home. It was six months later before a final invoice showed the woman’s account had actually been in

credit. A cheque was then sent to the family from the care provider, in October 2019. Sadly the woman died in the same month. The Ombudsman’s investigation found the council did not reach an agreement with the care home on the amount paid for the woman’s placement, or consider paying more than it would normally to keep the placement because of the potential impact on her wellbeing of moving her. The investigation also found fault with the way the council failed to discuss a third-party top-up payment with the family, and did not tell the family what they needed to do once the council took over responsibility for the care and payments. The care home was criticised for continuing to enforce the private contract after it started accepting payments from the council, and for serving a notice of eviction to the woman without trying to do more to resolve the payment issues. Michael King, Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, said: “Because of the failings I have found by both the council and care home, a woman – who was more than 100 years old – had to find a new home without anyone assessing what impact this might have on her. “This case is a stark reminder of what can go wrong when councils do not have robust policies in place for when people move from self-funded to council-funded care. Had the council focused on a person-centred approach, rather than look simply at its balance sheet, this woman may not have had to move. “I am pleased both the council and care home have accepted my rec-

ommendations to improve their processes and procedures, and note the council has already developed an action plan to put things right.” The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman’s role is to remedy injustice and share learning from investigations to help improve public, and adult social care, services. In this case the council has agreed to complete a new financial assessment for the woman, taking into account she had paid in advance for the care home. If it finds her savings fell below the threshold and she was eligible for financial assistance, it should refund any money owing to her estate. The council will also apologise to the daughter and pay her £250 for her time and trouble and distress. The Ombudsman has the power to make recommendations to improve processes for the wider public. In this case the council has agreed to review its procedures around transition from self-funded to council-funded care to ensure similar problems do not happen again. It will also ensure all staff are aware of the requirements to carry out a risk assessment where there are funding issues and a service user may need to move to a new placement. The care home has agreed to apologise to the woman’s daughter and pay her £250 for the avoidable distress caused as a result of having to find her mother a new care home. It should also review the terms and conditions in its contracts to cover the circumstances where a resident becomes eligible for council funding to prevent similar problems recurring.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 25

People Face Being Kept In Hospital Longer Than Needed If Vital Government Funding Is Taken Away People who are ready to be discharged from hospital risk end up staying longer than needed – with risks to their wellbeing and triggering treatment delays for other patients – if vital additional funding is not confirmed this month. Since April, people in hospital have benefited from an extra £600 million of funding that has enabled more investment in community services, which has led to more people being treated in or close to their homes. The new approach – discharge to assess – guarantees four weeks of care support for each discharged person, funded centrally. People can leave hospital as soon as they are medically ready, freeing up vital capacity. Alongside the NHS, social care and their families, patients then have a full four weeks to finalise longer-term care arrangements. However, with the funding coming to an end in October, the NHS Confederation, NHS Providers and a range of national organisations have written to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care and the Chancellor, urging them to avoid a “cliff edge” in care, as these services will need to be stood down unless a decision is made to extend the funding. The approach has already helped to free up 30,000 hospital beds, and 6,000 staff, including 4,000 frontline nurses. It has cut down the proportion of people staying in hospital for more than three weeks by almost a third. It has provided vital, stable funding to fragile social care providers and supported more people to live well at home and, with better use of short-term recovery services, it has meant reduced need for formal care and support packages. For people in hospital, it has cut recuperation time and avoided the increased likelihood of physical and mental deterioration and lost independence associated with longer hospital stays. It has helped reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infections, including COVID-19. With the NHS still awaiting its budget for the second half of the year, extra beds in rehabilitation centres and additional staff for home visits risk being scaled back or cut entirely if the discharge to assess funding isn’t matched for the next six months from October. This will result in more people who are medically fit for discharge staying in hospital for longer than needed. Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “This funding has been instrumental in moving patients out of hospital as quickly and safely as possible so that they can be cared for in or closer to

their homes, and also so that more patients can benefit from beds that would otherwise be occupied. “The interaction of health and care systems is complex and can be controversial, but this is an approach that has been proven to work. With the NHS facing a mammoth backlog of care and with the Government committed to unveiling a comprehensive social reform package in the autumn, this is surely not the time to be cancelling an initiative at the boundary of health and care that has worked so well.” Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, said: “Everyone knows that discharge to assess funding has been vital in enabling more medically fit patients to be discharged quickly and safely from hospital into their own homes or more suitable community services. Failure to continue this will result in a cliff edge that is likely to lead to an increase in average length of stay in hospital, delayed discharges and avoidable readmissions – all of which are costly to the public purse and to individuals and their families. This is a decision the Chancellor has to make, or we risk leaving more patients stuck in hospital when they don’t need to be.” Alongside the NHS Confederation and NHS Providers, the letter has been signed by Healthwatch England, the British Red Cross, the Local Government Association, and Age UK. The organisations are calling for the £600 million to be matched for the second half of the year, arguing that pulling the plug on the funding will have a knock-on effect on the NHS waiting list for elective care, with 5.3 million people already known to be waiting for treatment. The letter warns that removing the funding will risk derailing the progress that has been made so far this year in reducing patient length of stay. According to NHS England data, there was a 28 per cent reduction in people staying more than 21 days in hospital between winter 2019/20 and winter 2020/21. The risk is that removing this funding will lead to higher levels of bed occupancy in hospitals, reducing their capacity for elective procedures, all of which would hamper efforts to reduce the waiting list backlog as well as having wide-reaching impacts on the broader health and care system. The organisations are urging the Prime Minister and the Chancellor to confirm the discharge to assess funding in the coming days so that health and care leaders in England have the time they need to plan their services and ensure contracts are in place in good time. The funding has been vital in places like Sussex where they have been able to reduce the average length of stay for patients by 37 per cent.

AKW Donates Respiratory Equipment To Help India Nick Parsons, Group CEO of AKW Holdings Ltd comments: “we acquired

AKW, one of the UK’s leading providers of accessibility solutions, is

the four PAP machines to donate to the UK, to help fight the effects of the

pleased to announce the donation of four Positive Airway Pressure (PAP) respiratory ventilation machines to help ease the suffering of those strug-

coronavirus. However, with so many other Government led initiatives to

gling with the coronavirus in India.

create PAP machines, we were unable to make this contribution. We decided therefore to hold onto this equipment in anticipation of a needy cause.

With the help of AKW’s logistics partner, XPO, and global relief agencies,

India’s recent spike in COVID-19 cases and subsequent struggle to provide

the machines have arrived at the Vitasta Health Care Trust in Bantalab Jammu, India, where they will be used to help treat patients struggling

respiratory equipment to all those in need made the choice to donate an

with coronavirus complications.

easy one”.

Devoted Care Worker Recognised In Prestigious Industry Awards Denise Collier, support worker at Laverneo care home in Pennywell, Sunderland, has been named as the winner of The Care Home Worker Award in the Great British Care Awards for the North East. Denise Collier, who is retiring in November, has worked at Laverneo since 1996, caring for individuals with a range of physical and learning disabilities. During her time at the home, Denise has taken up a variety of different roles, helping to build positive relationships with many of the individuals in her care. She has taken responsibility for taking residents on trips, planning daily activities and mentoring and training new staff members, amongst several other important roles. The Great British Care Awards are a series of regional events throughout the UK and are a celebration of excellence across the care sector. The awards pay tribute to individuals who have demonstrated outstanding work within their field. Denise said: “I am delighted to have won this award, and it couldn’t have been done

without the fantastic team at Laverneo. “I have spent my entire 46-year career working in care, with 26 of those years as a support worker at Laverneo. “It has been a passion of mine to do the work I do and not a single day has felt like work. I feel incredibly lucky to have dedicated my life to caring for others. “This is a lovely way to end this chapter with my friends at Laverneo, as I look forward to retirement.” John Godden MBE, CEO of Salutem Care and Education, said: “On behalf of the whole Salutem family, I’d like to congratulate Denise for this extraordinary recognition. “Denise and the team at Laverneo’s dedication has really come to the fore over the past 18 months when they have gone above and beyond to offer every opportunity for the people we support to live their best lives.”

Scooter Meet Up Returns to Carey Lodge Care Home On Saturday 31 July, Scooter enthusiasts descended on Carey Lodge care home for their annual summer scooter meet up. Members from a range of scooter clubs, including The Buzzards (Leighton Buzzard), Tin Soldiers (Bletchley and MK), The Variants (Dunstable) and Aylesbury Scooter Club, braved the rain and provided residents with a nostalgic ‘blast from the past’. The popular event was first set up seven years ago by The Fremantle Trust’s Leisure and Lifestyle Manager, Sue Faulkner. Commenting on the scooter meet up, Sue Faulkner said: “We missed out on hosting this meet up last year, so this event was long-awaited and therefore extra special. Michelle the singer was fabulous as always and residents thoroughly enjoyed admiring the scooters. Despite the rain, a great time was had by all and the scooter clubs have already agreed to return next year!”

The event sparked interest among one resident in particular – Robert Howe, who has a penchant for motorbikes. Sue explained: “This event wasn’t something he was going to miss out on and he ventured out to spend time admiring the scooters and chatting to the owners, which was such a joy to see.” As well as admiring the scooters, which are prize possessions for the owners, the care home residents and guests tucked into an afternoon tea in the homes glorious garden and danced the afternoon away to motown classics performed by singer Michelle Nova. Frequent visitor and scooter enthusiast from the Leighton Buzzards said: “Apart from 2020, we’ve been coming for the past few years and we absolutely love it. Seeing the joy on the residents faces, is incredibly rewarding – and the cakes are always delicious! We’ll certainly be back next year.”


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Alzheimer’s Society Confirmed as The FA’s Official Charity Partner Alzheimer’s Society has been confirmed as official charity partner of The Football Association for the next two football seasons, following a competitive application process. Off the back of a historic year for football, the partnership will use the sport’s unrivalled power and reach to increase support and generate significant funds and awareness of dementia, changing how people experience dementia on an unprecedented scale. The partnership will be launched at The FA Community Shield supported by McDonald’s between Leicester City and Manchester City on Saturday 7 August at Wembley Stadium connected by EE. The FA will work closely with Alzheimer’s Society to raise vital funds towards crucial support services, such as its Dementia Connect support line, increasing its capacity so the charity can reach even more people. The partnership will also ensure The FA and local football clubs up and down the nation can refer employees, players, former players, and fans to the charity for dedicated dementia support. The FA’s employees will also be offered the chance to volunteer for Alzheimer’s Society. Additionally, the partnership seeks to help bring dementia out of the shadows and tackle the stigma surrounding the condition, by raising greater understanding of dementia among the footballing community. The FA will work with Alzheimer’s Society to break down the barriers that prevent people from accessing the help they need, so no football player, former player or fan across the nation faces dementia alone. The partnership will also create a network of dementia-friendly facilities and upskill The FA’s employees, so people living with dementia and

their families can return to and stay connected to the game they love without fear – setting a benchmark for other sports to follow. The partnership will benefit from Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends programme, the largest social movement around dementia, changing the way society thinks, acts, and talks about dementia and garnering over 3.4 million members in the UK. Alzheimer’s Society will also advise The FA and provide research expertise to further understand the cause of dementia and its risk factors. There are currently 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK. The announcement comes at a crucial time, with the pandemic having hit people with dementia hardest – they face a long road to recovery, with many experiencing isolation, missing activities, and losing routines that are crucial to maintaining independence. Alzheimer’s Society Ambassador Sir Geoff Hurst said of the announcement: ‘It’s incredibly exciting to see The FA partner with Alzheimer’s Society, especially after a huge year for the nation’s mostloved sport. This partnership has the potential to change the landscape of dementia in football on a massive scale.’ ‘Too many of my colleagues from the unforgotten team of ‘66 have been affected by dementia – a group of remarkable men.’ ‘I will never forget the memory of us all doing a lap of honour at Wembley and walking up to the Royal Box to face the Queen, trophy in hand. But the reality is that Wembley could be filled ten times over with people living with dementia in the UK, with millions more lives affected. ‘Throughout the pandemic, demand has increased for Alzheimer’s Society’s services, such as its Dementia Connect support line, but there are so many more who desperately need help and don’t know where to turn. ‘By working with The FA, the charity can raise much-needed funds and ensure that the millions of football followers and their families know

they don’t have to face dementia alone.’ Edleen John, The FA’s Director of International Relations, Corporate Affairs and Co-Partner for Equality Diversity and Inclusion, said: ‘We were really pleased to present our employees and players with an excellent range of charities that were committed to using the power of football as a force for good. ‘We wanted our teams and staff to have a voice in our charity partner selection, so we gave them an opportunity to vote for the one that they are personally and professionally passionate about alongside recognising our organization’s strategic objectives. ‘With further research, early treatment and support, many people with dementia will be able to lead full and active lives. Together, we hope to make a significant difference to all those impacted by dementia and to ensure that the football community is aware of the signs, advice available and can access support when they need it.’ Kate Lee, Chief Executive at Alzheimer’s Society added: ‘It’s been brilliant for all of us to enjoy an incredible few weeks of football after the year we’ve all had. For so many fans and former players living with dementia, that passion and common interest is their form of escapism after a diagnosis. ‘Our partnership with The FA is a huge step in changing how people experience dementia within the sporting industry and couldn’t have come sooner.’ ‘Following a catastrophic time for people with dementia, this is a massive opportunity to help support those who have never needed it more. ‘Together, we can help ensure that the millions of football supporters and their families know our services are here, change how fans and players receive support and create a dementia inclusive industry, so people with dementia can continue to remain part of the game. ‘Together, we can showcase the power of football to change lives for the better.’

Derby Care Home To Benefit From A Significant Transformative Refurbishment Programme HC-One, the Kind Care Company is pleased to announce that Aspen Court care home in, Spondon, Derby is part of a significant investment programme. As part of HC-One’s strategy to better meet evolving care needs, in particular the growing number of people living with dementia, it is currently undertaking a large investment programme to refurbish and upgrade more than 200 of its care homes, including Aspen Court care home. The refurbishment programme is part of HC-One’s vision to be the UK’s first-choice care provider in the communities it serves. The company is committed to fostering an environment that truly feels like home, and enhancing care home facilities will help to provide the best setting for

Residents, team members and visitors. HC-One Area Director, Sharon Bingham said: “We’re really excited about the refurbishment plans for Aspen Court and for the work to safely be getting underway. We look forward to visiting the home and seeing the end result, and when it is safe to do so, welcoming more visitors to see our new look.” Part of the quiet, residential community of Spondon near Derby, Aspen Court is a friendly care home that proudly offers nursing and residential care to older ladies and gentlemen, as well as care for young people with physical disabilities.

LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS How Care Homes Can Protect Residents…With Washing Machines Since the emergence of Covid-19 in the UK, care homes have found themselves in the unfamiliar position of being thrust under a harsh public spotlight. Outbreaks within homes necessitated the implementation of stringent measures to ensure resident safety that included rigorous social distancing, heightened sanitation and rugged PPE. However, these intrusive measures, as vital as they have been and continue to be, risk being undermined by the most unlikely source – washing machines. Laundry hygiene is of course a priority in the vast majority of care homes, but too few recognise just how fundamental it is to preventing infection. Incorrect handling, processing and storage of linen in particular, all present an unnecessary risk. Several recently published reports have detailed how inadequate laundering of textiles in healthcare has been the direct cause of outbreaks. As care home residents are vulnerable to infection, it is critical that care homes ensure that they, as well as their carers and visitors, are protected on all fronts.

COST AND COMPLIANCE Though care homes strive to create environments that are as homely as possible, they are still commercial premises in the eyes of the law. From a purely financial perspective, this means that warranties on domestic washing machines are voided where they are used in care homes, resulting in significant costs for fixes and replacements if a machine becomes damaged. Moreover, very few domestic machines are approved by the Water Regulations Advisory Scheme (WRAS) for the processing of infected linen. This is because they do not have backflow protection to prevent a soiled load contaminating the water supply with bacteria and viruses. As this is a UK requirement, care homes using

domestic washing machines could be contravening water regulations.

BRINGING THE HEAT The high heat of commercial washing machines not only remove stains, but ensures any harmful microorganisms present in each load are killed. As domestic machines are designed primarily for energy savings, they are not equipped with the heater elements found in commercial machines that can maintain enough heat to penetrate a full load and achieve total disinfection. The Department of Health’s HTM 01-04 Decontamination of Linen for Health & Social Care states that a traditional thermal disinfection cycle can either be 71ºC for 11 minutes or 65ºC for 18 minutes. Domestic machines offer no guarantees that a cycle will achieve (let alone hold) these temperatures, meaning disinfection cannot be achieved. Of course, multiple washes throughout the day at such high temperatures places a burden on utility budgets, but even here there is an alternative. Care homes can opt for machines which use natural chemical disinfection to achieve deeply cleaned, softer fabrics but which operate at low much lower temperatures. JLA’s OTEX laundry disinfection machine does just this – the patented technology eradicates harmful microorganisms in every wash and even prints validation receipts to prove disinfection has been attained. And by pre-programming cycles, it can be guaranteed that every wash, on whichever programme a member of staff selects, achieves full disinfection. When only the best will do, choose JLA as your trusted partner. To find out more on OTEX and our SMART laundry systems, as well as catering, heating and fire safety equipment call us on 0800 591 903 or go to www.jla.com




THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 29

LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS Care Home Laundry Equipment MAG Laundry Equipment works with care homes across the UK to provide high quality, affordable washing machines, tumble dryers and ironers. With 5 star feedback from independent care homes and groups MAG is one of the UK’s best rated suppliers. Can MAG assist you with any new laundry equipment?

They also provide spare parts, repairs, gas certificates, detergents and room sanitising machines. Get in touch for a product brochure or quote. MAG Laundry Equipment Phone: 01451 604708 Email: info@laundrymachines.co.uk Website: www.maglaundryequipment.co.uk ★★★★★ Ask MAG about their impressive care home testimonials! ★★★★★

An Appropriate and Hygienic Warewasher is Central to Care Home‘s Efficiency When choosing a commercial dishwasher for a healthcare environment there are a number of factors to consider including the plumbing and electrical supply, the financial outlay and the physical space available. Most important however are the industry and individual care-home’s specific hygiene requirements. Forbes Professional always conducts a comprehensive site survey to ensure that the right machines are specified for each site. They are proud partners with Miele, whose commercial dishwashers are fully WRAS compliant and comply with all the necessary industry regulations. For a care environment, Forbes’ latest range of tank dishwashers enable an impressively fast throughput, which is invaluable for a busy kitchen. However, for some care homes a specialist hygiene dishwasher is required in order to ensure that the highest levels of hygiene are maintained. Miele PG8059 HYGIENE freshwater dishwashers deliver a

particularly high temperature final rinse that is maintained for 5 minutes to ensure the ultimate hygienic clean. With a default temperature of 85 C they more than exceed the Department of Health’s recommendations of a two-minute cycle at 82 C. During lockdown, Forbes continued to install and service these machines for a number of NHS hospitals as they meet the most stringent hygiene standards. Forbes Professional’s experienced account managers provide all the necessary advice to ensure adherence to the relevant operating parameters. Under their complete care package, clients avoid capital outlay and the fixed monthly payments are entirely deductible pretax profits. Clients also have the peace of mind afforded by a first-class engineer response service, at no extra cost for the duration of the contract. Contact info@forbes-professional.co.uk 0345 070 2335 or www.forbespro.co.uk

New Girbau Laundry Provides Vital Support to Carers and Residents at Mary Stevens Hospice Refurbishment of the laundry at Mary Stevens Hospice in Stourbridge, West Midlands with new washers and dryers from Girbau UK has a vital, if largely unseen role to play in supporting the well-being of residents with life-limiting illnesses. “Everyone in the Hospice knows it is like a puzzle, where every single part is vitally important and needs to be pieced together with little effort,” says Gerry Crow, Director of Operations & Support. “Even though the laundry is very much a function hidden away from those we are caring for, without it we would not be able to provide the level of support we do to our patients and their carers.” Mary Stevens Hospice provides specialist care and support for people who are living with a life-limiting illness, and their families. Care is provided in a 10-bed InPatient Unit and its Day Services Unit. Both offer modern facilities complemented by a warm, friendly and comforting environment. After visiting the hospice to get a full understanding of its laundry needs Girbau recommended the installation of two HS-6013 washers in combination with two of its energy efficient ED260 dryers.

“We have used Girbau products for many years and have found them to be very reliable,” says Gerry Crow. “The decision to choose Girbau products again for this refurbishment was taken on cost of ownership, the proven reliability of Girbau equipment and the level of long-term support available directly from Girbau.” Designed to lower water and energy consumption while boosting productivity, Girbau HS washers feature automatic chemical dosing, high-speed spinning, unmatched durability and a high degree of programmability. Their high spin speed achieves a market-leading centrifugal spin force of up to 400G throughout the spin cycle to leave laundry with residual moisture levels of less than 50%, offering significant energy and cost savings in the subsequent drying process. Girbau’s premium ED series dryers ensure all items including delicates are dried safely, uniformly, efficiently and cost-effectively. Designed to be more energy efficient than any other conventional dryer, ED Series feature Girbau’s Transflow technology. This is a combination of both radial and axial airflow for maximum efficiency, reduced cycle times and lower energy costs. Cabinet insulation and a double-glazed door further optimise energy efficiency. The highly reliable and accurate humidity control system on ED dryers automatically senses when clothes are dry and activates the cool down process maximising energy efficiency and assuring textile care. For more information visit: www.girbau.co.uk

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

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

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


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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 healthcareassociated infections (HCAIs) are a priority for healthcare providers, and who are employing a combination of infection prevention and control strategies, including hand hygiene, cleaning, training and the adoption of new technologies, to tackle the problem. As a result, a wide range of infection control products and technologies are emerging on the market, including antimicrobial technology. Angloplas’ range of dispensers are produced in the world’s first proven

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

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 all-inclusive 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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 31

HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Preventing Infection In Care Homes with Effective, Sustainable Waste Disposal

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

method for bedpans and urinals in care homes. SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) can survive 1-2 days in urine and faeces therefore reusable methods must be avoided. “94% of hospitals in the UK adopt the system of using mechanical macerators and disposable pulp products for collecting human waste on ward environments, especially those with bed bound patients, and care homes should be no different.” “Using pulp with macerators is a safe, environmentally friendly way of disposing of bodily waste. It maximises healthcare workers time and having reviewed the evidence and used most of the methods throughout my clinical career, it is by far the most effective” Gary Thirkell, Infection Prevention and Control Lead Nurse. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Organisation recommends that "all equipment should be single use and disposable to minimize the risk of transmission” The Vernacare human waste disposal system, features mechanical macerator machines which are installed into the home. Using a disposal pulp system for collecting human waste, the pulp items and associated maceratable wipes and gels are then put into the macerator and processed into a thin pulp which can be disposed of via the usual drainage system. The sustainable single-use system uses 100% recycled newspaper to create all pulp products; manufactured in the UK, including urinals, bed pans and wash bowls.

Portable, Hospital-Grade Air Purifier Rensair is a specialist in air purification, protecting and enhancing lives through clean air. Developed to meet the strict standards of Scandinavian hospitals, ours is the only technology recommended by the WHO and UK SAGE committee and is independently validated by several scientific research laboratories. In the context of the coronavirus pandemic, air purification has never been more important. Our mission is to get organisations back on their feet, destroying a minimum of 99.97% of airborne viruses to ensure clean air for every person. Rensair collaborates with clients to develop the optimum indoor air quality for meeting care home

requirements, as well as government recommendations for mitigating the risks of Covid transmission. Taking into account floor plans, existing ventilation systems and occupancy rates, we determine if there is a gap between existing air quality and that recommended by the WHO and UK SAGE Committee. If air quality is lacking, we will recommend a tailor-made configuration based on our portable, hospital-grade air purifier, in tandem with any existing HVAC systems. Our no-obligation advice is based on verifiable data, research and experience, which is made freely available to ensure that decisions affecting health are well-informed. Visit www.rensair.com

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

The MUV-X Room UV Steriliser… Reliable Technology The market for UVC room sterilisers currently includes a lot of poor quality, cheap products which the manufacturers often describe in terms such as ‘may be effective against COVID-19’ or ‘we expect this will be effective against COVID-19’. For professionals, relying on ‘may be effective’ isn’t good enough. As the saying goes, ‘you get what you pay for!

INDEPENDENT TESTING OF OUR MUV-X FOR SARS-COV2 & CPE: Since we launched the Muv-X, we have had it test-

ed at an FDA-approved and ISO 17025-certified laboratory. The conclusions from this independent testing were ‘highly effective in completely removing SARSCoV-2 RNA’ and also ‘zero survival of CPE on white PVC, blue PVC and stainless steel’. Two outstanding results! Full reports available on request. The optimum runtimes for the Muv-X, as set out in our Technical Manual, are focused specifically on SARS-CoV-2 and are calculated based on a 6 log reduction (99.9999%). We have also made the product very mobile and easy for users to move from one room to the next. In other words, all the ease of movement of a lower cost product but with the proven capability associated with the higher cost products. Visit www.cwappliedtechnology.com


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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL

Protecting Residents From Germs and Viruses and Creating Odour-Free Environments Within care home environments, there is an intense focus on hygiene and cleaning standards to safeguard the health and wellbeing of the residents and mitigate the spread of viruses, bacteria, germs and infectious diseases. For elderly people, the threat of viruses such as COVID-19 poses additional concerns, given that they often have more compromised immune systems. Despite the necessary measures of routine handwashing, PPE and disposable equipment, the spread of sickness, infection and viruses such as coronavirus and influenza are major concerns in the care home environment. Between 2nd March and 12the June 2020, there were over 66,000 deaths of care home residents in England and Wales, compared to just under 37,000 deaths in 2019. Whereas, due to the nature of care home facilities and the residents who occupy them, it is impossible to completely eradicate odours, sickness and the spread of infections and viruses, there is a factor that is often overlooked – indoor air quality. However, though it may be more difficult to visibly recognise, poor quality indoor air can also have severe and lasting effects on cognition and health. According to studies conducted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in care homes and other large facilities, indoor levels of pollutants may be more than 100 times higher than pollutants found outdoors. In the UK, the average person spends the vast majority of their time indoors, but due to restricted mobility or underlying medical conditions, most care home residents spend an even greater proportion of their time indoors.

Therefore, adding the complementary process of an air purification solution to the hygiene mix is a vital requirement for care homes in maintaining a healthy living space.

99.99% EFFECTIVE AGAINST CORONAVIRUS One solution is the Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifier, which utilises a unique fourstage filtration system, featuring HEPA filters, to provide maximum protection against harmful airborne contaminants – including being 99.99% effective against Coronavirus 229E. AeraMax Pro air purifiers remove germs and viruses, and eliminate odours, allergens and other irritants from the air, removing up to 99.9% of air contaminants. AeraMax Pro uses EnviroSmart technology to monitor a room’s air quality and occupancy. It adjusts its performance to optimise effectiveness whilst reducing energy consumption and extending filter life. This is particularly important in the care home environment where occupancy levels may vary greatly in common areas and dining rooms throughout the day. To learn more about the benefits of improving indoor air quality in the care home environment visit: http://aeramaxpro.com/uk/ *Fellowes AeraMax Pro air purifiers were demonstrated to be effective in reducing aerosolised airborne concentration of Human Coronavirus 229E in a test chamber reaching 99.99% airborne reduction within 1 hour of operation, based on independent laboratory testing.

GUARDIAN Demonstrates How To Show You Care ®

Are you a care provider that wants to ensure that your water system compliance is the best it can be…? Would you benefit from reassurance that prescription medication is maintained at the optimum safe temperature and waste is reduced…? All while freeing up extra hours of staff time for what really matters … the wellbeing of your residents? Plexus Innovation brings care providers all of that and more through GUARDIAN®, a ‘musthave’ remote IoT technology. GUARDIAN® detects many issues not otherwise possible, monitoring real-time data, enhancing business compliance, while reducing risk, water waste, energy consumption and relieving pressure on human time. GUARDIAN® also reduces the risk of scalding and helps to protect staff, residents and guests from risk of legionella. Managing director, Ian

Murray, said: “We currently support care providers, all of whom are benefiting from our GUARDIAN® measurement and alert system. Designed, developed and manufactured in the UK, GUARDIAN® can be installed by our team with no interruption to your daily activities. Alternatively, we can give training enabling the user to easily set up in minutes, putting the data live onto the portal managed by our experienced team at Plexus Innovation.” Kirsty Nealis, Head of Care Delivery at Careline Lifestyles, said: “With the extra pressures brought about by COVID-19 we couldn’t be more grateful for GUARDIAN® helping us to have our compliance measurements done reliably, in real time and even better, remotely. We are always looking for innovative new ways to improve our services, freeing up staff, allowing

them more time to support our residents.” Get in touch today, or visit our stand F82 at the Dementia, Care and Nursing Home Expo on 15th and 16th September, for a free demonstration on how GUARDIAN® measures and monitors temperature, bringing business improvements to help you meet your care industry challenges. www.plexus-innovation.com E: info@plexus-innovation.com T: 0191 922 3969



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NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION The Ageing Population: Tackling the Challenge of Falls By Barak Katz, VP and GM Essence SmartCare (www.essencesmartcare.com) It is no surprise that populations around the world are ageing dramatically, with citizens living far longer than ever before. Indeed, the UK Office of National Statistics (ONS), reveals that a quarter of the population will be over 65 by 2045. While this reflects improved health and welfare standards, such an ageing population presents the NHS and social care services with a number of challenges, with perhaps none more important than dealing with the aftermath of life-changing falls. The Public Health Outcomes Framework (PHOF) showed that between 2017-2018 there were around 220,000 emergency hospital admissions related to falls among patients aged 65 and over. Dealing with these falls is estimated to cost NHS England £435m a year alone. Whilst our own research, conducted in late 2020, showed around 75 percent of all falls go unreported, as people are often embarrassed about falling and don’t want to be ‘told off’ by family members and carers. Put simply, if individuals are not reaching out and raising the subject with their families or carers, care teams will struggle to prevent such incidents from happening again. What’s the answer? To focus on preventing falls, and when they do happen, to be better at detecting, and responding to them.

FALL PREVENTION REQUIRES GREATER ACCURACY AND MORE DATA INSIGHT Preventing falls requires multi-disciplinary teams who have access to behavioural information about the situation just prior to the fall. Whilst there have been some developments within social care, where technology such as smart sensors and other telecare solutions have been added to the home to track elderly subjects, there are too many gaps in the data. Most current fall detectors are based on accelerometer technology, which only detects certain types of incidents and only the fall itself. Teams need to consider the accuracy of what is being reported and verify whether

the incident was indeed a fall. This represents a serious challenge, and our research suggests, less than half of those in residential care actually wear fall detection devices even when provided to them. To some, they represent a ‘badge of vulnerability’. Elderly care needs to be far more proactive and respectful, and there needs to be greater visibility across the whole home. Relying on legacy technology that only confirms whether a fall indeed took place and calls for help, is clearly not working. Care teams need insight into the events that led up to the fall. A more non-linear approach to falls management is needed, but this requires far more effective fall detection technology.

BUILDING A NON-LINEAR APPROACH TO MANAGING FALLS Clearly to be better at falls management, more information needs to be recorded and shared. For example, consider an appraisal of a victim’s situation leading up to the fall, telecare solutions can now report on the circumstances leading up to the incident and care teams can retrace their steps. In fact, whilst multiple sensors could notice an individual’s movement within the household, more recent developments such as machine learning, can analyse trends and patterns in behaviour. It could highlight whether the individual moved suddenly following a long period of seated rest, or whether they were in fact in a darkened room. These seemingly small factors could greatly inform how care teams and families plan proactively for future events. Teams would have the insight leading up to event enabling future prevention. Once teams can improve the accuracy of recorded falls with an increase in incident logs and case history and gain real insight into what led to the fall, they can put more preventative measures in place. With greater data on high-risk individuals, they can personalise their social care programme, providing specific prevention and management help. Whether grab rails, improved flooring, or lighting, or even reconsidering the resident’s current home setting. By assessing the circumstances and identifying all risk factors for that individual, teams can make widespread changes. Using such techniques as described above will help older people feel more comfortable discussing a fall incident. Whilst falls cannot be entirely stopped from happening, we can deploy more appropriate technology, gather and share the right data, and in so doing help mitigate the risks that falls bring, leading to better health and living conditions.

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

FALL SAVERS ® WIRELESS MONITOR

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

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

Benefits include:

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

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

Features include:

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 35

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION The Digital Future of Care As the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic continues, 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 rigor-

ous 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 field-based engineering staff with overalls, gloves, face masks and plenty of hand sanitiser. By diligently observing these protocols, and despite our staff visiting care homes and hospitals on a daily basis throughout the pandemic, not one of them has developed any COVID-19 symptoms at any time. For further information visit www.nursecallsystems.co.uk

Make Your Nursecall Data Work For You and Your Residents

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

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

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

www.nursecallsystems.co.uk


PAGE 36 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION

NURSE CALL

IT’S NOT OBSOLETE UNTIL THE OPERA LADY SINGS

EDISON TELECOM LTD (IN BUSINESS SINCE 1984)

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

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

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

Alarm Radio Monitoring Data is now an important part of our daily routines, whether that be in a work or home environment. What we do with the data is vital no more so than in our care homes. Alarm Radio Monitoring Ltd (A.R.M) have recently released their updated Data Management software, enabling care home managers to monitor calls & emergencies along with providing analysis of shift patters and staff management. Working in conjunction with A.R.M’s Nurse Call and Bed Angel systems it is a tool that can easily demonstrate what is happening in a care home and provides evidence of care, ideal for relatives and the CQC. Having up to 60 Suites on one screen at a time gives the user an exceptional overview of their home and shows live second by second data. The

software has the functionality to set timings for room checks with warning when those times are coming to an end, the ability to monitor these settings with an in depth reporting system is crucial for providing high quality care to residents. Alarm Radio Monitoring is a UK based Manufacturer of wireless Nurse Call and staff alarm systems, offering a comprehensive range of Nurse Call, Staff Alarm, Fire Alarm and Door Access bespoke systems. With over 25 years experience in the design & development of wireless Nurse Call and Staff Alarm systems A.R.M has established itself as a key player within the wireless solutions market to the public and private healthcare sectors. For further details call 01568 610 016 or email sales@arm.uk.com

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

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 37

NURSE CALL AND FALLS PREVENTION The New MPCSA11 from Medpage Medpage is a family ran company, with a huge heart and resources gathered over our 35- year trading history. The majority of the technologies we design, manufacture and distribute originate from enquiries received from healthcare professionals and personal family care observations. Our product portfolio provides a wide variety of care solutions for epilepsy, dementia, senior care, special needs and sensory loss. Our latest innovation, currently in use in several Hospitals, presents an effective fall monitoring, detection and reporting solution. The MPCSA11 is a complex software driven sensor monitor made to be user and operator friendly. This device has already proven successful in hospital and care home trials by reducing patient falls while also reducing false positives from a safe patient. The device can monitor and interact with up to three sensor products: bed and chair occupancy pressure pads, PIR movement detection sensors and proximity signal products. In use, a patient or resident rising from their bed would be considered a falls risk, but what if they are simply moving to sit in a chair close to their bed? A standard bed monitor would raise an alarm alerting

Nursecall Mats Nursecall Mats is a family run business with a wealth of experience and knowledge in fall prevention with innovative product and excellent customer service in the healthcare industry. Stocking a large range of genuine and compatible fall prevention products such as call points, call leads, crash mats, sensor mats and PIR Detectors, with a free, next day delivery service available to most areas within the UK.

HEAVY DUTY SENSOR MATS

Our core range of sensor mats include the Floor Sensor Mat range, available as a robust standard black mat, heavy duty cream mat and a Carpet Mat with an anti-slip base. The bed and chair mats are available with our new ProPlus fully sealed design for improved performance and reliability. All sensor mats can be connected directly into most nurse call systems such as; Intercall, C-Tec Nursecall 800, Quantec,

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. Aidcall, Courtney Thorne, SAS and more making it easier and more efficient for care home groups to purchase to suit all their homes.

ANTIBACTERIAL PULL CORDS

With a wide range of antibacterial pull cords and accessories all available in Red, White and Orange, in stock, with accessories such as replacement triangles, connectors, acorns and more help keep your systems maintained. These include our antibacterial / antimicrobial pull cord with a revolutionary coating with inbuilt protection, proven to inhibit growth of bacteria and can be easily wiped clean. Also available as a anti-ligature, designed to snap with under force, protecting the user and eliminating risks.

PRESSURE CARE MATTRESSES & CUSHIONS

Our range of overlay and full replacement pressure care mattress and cushion systems are effective for prevention and treatment of patients at risk of developing pressure ulcers in nursing and care environments, with options for all risk levels. For further information, visit our website www.nursecallmats.co.uk or contact us 020 8454 7918, info@nursecallmats.co.uk

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


PAGE 38 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

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

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

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

Dementia-Friendly Bathroom Flooring According to the Alzheimer’s Society , 70 per cent of people in care homes have dementia or severe memory problems in the UK. Here Stuart Reynolds, Head of Product and Marketing at AKW discusses how thinking about the flooring can make a bathroom more dementia friendly. Not surprisingly, people with dementia are twice as likely to fall and these falls result in significantly higher mortality rates than for others in the same age group. The bathroom is one of the most challenging and dangerous places for a person with dementia. However, even thinking about something as the choice of a bathroom’s flooring can help reduce fall risks.

are available in 7 sizes for perfect fit. CareZips™ are soft and wrinkle resistant with stretch and give for extra comfort. Practical, durable, washable and noniron, the CareZips™ trousers are the perfect choice for daily use. Contact Win Health Medical Ltd - 01835 864866 www.win-health.com or see the advert on page 5.

end of the table. The inbuilt design and flexibility of the table ensures optimal working conditions for the carer. The ergonomically designed safety rails have a practical lower central section, which provides better access and work environment while transferring, showering, drying, changing and dressing the user. The safety rails can be operated with one hand by the carer enabling them to maintain eye contact and physical contact with the user during the whole process. The water collection tray has an integrated water outlet to prevent water from splashing on carers, or the floor. The flexible hose attached to the centre mounted outlet of the tray can be connected wither to an outlet in the floor or on the wall. The height adjustable model is operated with a wired hand control, offering a height adjustment of 700mm. The Shower Change Table 3000 has a maximum load of 200kg. Pressalit offers a variety of mobile and wall-mounted, height-adjustable and fixed height shower and changing tables of high quality. For the full range, visit www.pressalit.com Tel: 0844 8806950 email: uk@pressalit.com https://pressalit.com/en-uk/

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

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

THINK FLOORING

Comfort, Hygiene and Ease Of Use – Essentials in the Accessible Bathroom The Pressalit Shower Change Table 3000, designed for comfort, hygiene and ease of use in an accessible bathroom environment, is now available in two new colours. This popular Shower Change Table, which offers a stable and secure platform for showering and changing adults and children with complex needs, is now offered in Sapphire Blue and Graphite Grey. With the choice of a height adjustable or a fixedheight version, the Shower Change Table from Pressalit, the leading Scandinavian designer of accessible bathroom solutions, is well-placed for use in private homes, Changing Places toilets, hospitals, education establishments and institutions. As with all products in the Pressalit range, its stylish and award-winning design focusses on comfort, hygiene and ease of use. For maximum use of space, it can be folded up against the wall when not being used. With smooth contact surfaces, eliminating any gathering points for dirt or bacteria, the Shower Change Table is easy to wipe down and clean before and after use. The table is extremely comfortable and secure for the user, its slightly curved form enhanced with an adjustable neck support which can be moved to either

Renray Healthcare

with intumescent seals that are in accordance to the fire door’s specification. Fire rated Door Edge Protectors are suitable for commercial applications such as residential blocks, schools and hospitals etc. Door Edge Protectors can also be specified with different fire seals, from a plain intumescent fire seal to a brush, fire and smoke variant. Of course, for doors that are non-fire rated in an architect’s project Yeoman Shield also provide quality edge protectors without seals to enhance durability and reduce wear. Source a full range of door protection panels and kick plates from a single supplier by choosing Yeoman Shield. Our door protection panels and kick plates offer the same lasting durability and quality as our door edge protectors. Visit www.yeomanshield.com for details or see page 10.

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

FLOOR COLOUR PERCEPTION

Consistent flooring shades are crucial as a person with dementia can interpret a change in floor colour as a step up or down, leading to trips or falls on a level surface. Avoid very dark colour flooring as this can be perceived as being a big hole, making the person suffering from dementia reluctant to step into the

bathroom. Also avoid shiny flooring as this can be perceived as being wet and flooring with a small pattern or a speckled effect, as this can be seen as having dirt flecks that the person with dementia may try and pick up, leading to the possibility of a fall. Ultimately, ensure the floor is a single, light, uniform colour and choose a wet room solution rather than a level access tray, as the colour change from floor to tray could be seen as a step to someone with dementia. For the final word on flooring, make sure that anti-slip vinyl is used. A suitable example is AKW’s Safety Flooring, as this provides the same level of slip resistance in both wet or dry conditions, regardless of whether the user is wearing shoes or barefoot and has been tested in a variety of high-risk conditions. To find out more about creating dementia-friendly bathrooms, download AKW’s latest guide from www.akw-ltd.co.uk For more information, please contact AKW on 01905 823298, Email: sales@akw-ltd.co.uk or visit www.akw-ltd.co.uk See the advert on page 8.

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

We stock all major brands including, Cherokee, Dickies, Behrens, Alexandra, Koi, Orange Standard, Simki and Skechers. Healthcare uniforms come in all shapes and sizes, and we sell them all! We can also provide you with your catering staff, maintenance and reception uniforms. PERSONALISATION OF UNIFORMS IS OUR SPECIALITY! All embroidery is carried out in-house so we are able to react quickly to your order. For a limited time, we are offering FREE EMBROIDERY SET UP (normally £20) to all new customers. You will always speak personally to a member of our team when you call who are more than happy to help you with your requirements. Call today on 01270 814141 or visit www.scrubsuk.com or www.uniforms-uk.com See the advert on page 13.

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

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




THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64 | PAGE 41

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE How Digital Tools Can Better Support Care Teams in Times of Transition By Ross Mccaw, CEO and founder of OurPeople (www.ourpeople.com) The care industry has withstood a vast amount of change and turbulence over the last year and a half. With the unwavering public eye very much directed at the sector at this time, it’s time we slowed down and took consideration for the 1.6 million individuals working tirelessly across the UK to keep our most vulnerable people safe and cared for. Over the pandemic, digital tools have played a huge part in keeping these vital teams connected with the right information and supported by ensuring they have the resources they need when working. Now they are playing a greater role in helping management teams better support the mental health of their teams at such a busy and unpredictable juncture. Keeping teams safe with real time updates Most importantly, care teams need to feel safe to do their job. The last 18 months have seen care homes operating under significant stress, with patient and staff safety, as well as wellbeing being a concern for all those in health care. Over the pandemic, deskless workers like care home staff have relied on mobile technologies, to keep teams connected with the latest updates on protocols and health and safety measures. Information like this has been changing on a continual basis, from government updates and guidance, to

individual care home communities. Those receiving updates needed to ensure they were not being overwhelmed by a deluge of information, especially when their priorities are dealing with patients and clients, not spending hours reading through information. Mobile technology, such as communication platforms on smartphones, has been invaluable in this regard, by providing continuous access to an internalised database of information and updates. The real technological advancement within this, is the ability to personalise information, ensuring the right updates reach those teams who need that information, as opposed to bombarding teams with updates not relevant to them - including reaching out to individual members who have not engaged with updates yet. On a pragmatic level this technology also helps manage work flows, assisting in things like staggering shifts to adhere to government guidance, and immediately updating individuals who may have come into contact with the virus at work.

PERSONALISED TRAINING TO KEEP TEAMS CONFIDENT

In terms of training, personalisation also enables carers to test their knowledge of ongoing policy changes, by providing a centralised database of information for workers to tap into at any point. To ensure each team member is up to date, short-pop up quizzes in quiet periods allow individuals to tailor their training to them, spotting blind spots in knowledge gaps before they become an issue down the line when dealing with patients. This ability to streamline and tailor information to team members, ensures carers have the confidence to come into work knowing their safety is accounted for, and that their patients are being properly protected by management.

MENTAL HEALTH AND ACCOUNTING FOR THE INDIVIDUAL

With medical professionals having withstood significant psychological

strain over the pandemic, just as important as providing up to date information is to account for individual team members’ mental health. Digital tools provide a channel of communication for management to support the wellbeing of their staff, with messages of encouragement, and scheduling in regular check-ins. With the use of communication platforms like OurPeople, short pop-up quizzes provide immediate feedback on experiences or issues care team members may have encountered at work. Achieving a dialogue within teams can be made easy by using scheduling tools to automatically put catch ups in diaries, or through utilising video chats to connect with staff who are self-isolating. However, given the opportunity, nothing matches the impact of in-person feedback sessions. These meetings are the most important element of support available to management teams at care homes, as they provide the opportunity to check in with individual team members, offering the opportunity for them to discuss more personal or nuanced issues they may be experiencing. These sessions often get to the heart of the matter and are crucial when functioning within an emotionally charged environment such as a care home under stress.

CONNECTING CARE TEAMS AT THIS CRUCIAL JUNCTURE The ramifications of covid on care homes has been vast, with the highs and lows of the last year and a half fresh in the minds of those who work in the sector. Protecting your staff is the best possible way to ensure we recover from this virus in the strongest, safest way possible. Digital communication tools like mobile technology or communication platforms can help your team stay connected to one another and the vital information they need, whilst most importantly, keeping management connected to how their teams are faring when dealing with patients and clients.

Lincolnshire Partnership Examines Resident-Focused Technology In Social Care Serco, a specialist in delivering essential public services and healthcare, has created a new partnership with Lincolnshire County Council (LCC) and the University of Lincoln to investigate how modern and costeffective technology can be used to improve independent living for vulnerable adults. The group’s work is focusing on how best to help people who might otherwise need assistive-care or be moved into a care-home. Both these choices are often emotionally distressing for those who want to be independent for longer, and represent a significant financial strain on the care system. The initial research, titled ‘Social Care Technology Innovation for the Citizens of Lincolnshire,’ began in June and over the coming five months will carefully examine how modern, mainstream technology can be applied in innovative and non-intrusive ways to assist people’s social needs. The final outcomes and recommendations will be submitted as an indepth report on how services provided through Lincolnshire County Council might be improved. It is envisaged the research will be equally applicable to other local authorities, throughout the UK. Ben Johnson, Serco Head of IT at its Lincoln-based hub, explains: “Serco already works closely with the council to deliver outsourced finance, payroll, contact centre services and IT support. “The important questions we’ll now be considering are ‘how can mainstream technology support vulnerable adults, particularly those with cognitive challenges such as dementia, and people with disabilities to live independent lives?’ Also ‘how can we ensure people wanting to use this technology are not digitally excluded?’ “As part of this it’s vital that the project works closely with key stakeholders, including the vulnerable adults we are aiming to help, their families, local councillors and central-government grant bodies.” Dr Salah Al-Majeed, Acting Head of the School of Computer Science at the University of Lincoln, adds: “This is a tremendously exciting project and we hope the end results will mark Lincolnshire out as a national leader in the use of innovative,

How to enhance your residents residents experience -! -!

Imagine a piece of e equipment for your car care home that can enhance the experience of your ts mentally y,, rresidents esidents mentally, physically and also emotionally Inspired Inspired Inspirations have been working directly directly with care care homes in developing their interactive touch screen screen activity tables over the last few years, to provide provide a range of screen screen sizes and units to suit every care care setting.! setting.! Just think of a giant Android Android tablet built into a solid oak surround, surround, on a base that houses a large large battery to allow you to use it all day long and smooth running wheels for easy movement between rooms rooms in your care care home. ! “This amazing bit of technology is making a huge di!erence di!e !errence to our ou ur residents” residents” Melanie Dawson, Dawso Manager, Manager r, The Lawns L at Heritage Manor The screen screen is 5mm tempered tempered glass for your residents uid ingress ingress residents safety and sealed against fluid meaning a spill of a cup of tea won’t won’t ruin your ! equipment. It also means an easy clean solution to stop cross cross contamination using any normal surface cleaner.! cleanerrr..!

digital technology to support and advance independent living for vulnerable adults. “Our current research is looking at how low-cost consumer technology can provide highly beneficial solutions within a short timescale. “These developments could, for example, include the use of smartspeakers and digital assistants, wearable technology such as smart watches, cameras and remote sensors. “We’re also considering how smartphones, tablets and apps, often developed for the general public might be used by people with dementia, as well as how assistive technology devices can help with everyday living, enabling people to carry out day-to-day tasks that enhance their safety, and monitor things like health and cooking, bathing, memory, thinking, leisure and social participation. “Our work is ultimately about using low-cost technology to prevent, rather than cure, and allow vulnerable and disabled adults to maintain as

Mentally - Brain training apps, memory apps, quizzes, board board games, reasoning reasoning challenges.! challenges.! Exercise Physically - Exer cise for the elderly online coordination, increased classes, hand eye coor dination, incr eased around large movement to move hands ar ound a lar ge screen.! screen.! Emotionally - Reminiscence tours on Google Earth, past and present YouTube present clips on YouT Y ouT Tube of ! hobbies or interests, interests, religious religious services and Group Group ZOOM calls to loved ones who cant get to visit in your residents residents person!! person!!

! !

high a level of independence as possible. “This could mean people being able to stay in their own home, using unobtrusive devices they are completely comfortable with. ‘Behind the scenes’ and invisible to the end-user, powerful technology such as ‘big data,’ predictive analysis, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and smart-buildings could be combined to bring real benefits to the citizens of Lincolnshire.” Councillor Wendy Bowkett, Executive Councillor for Adult Care and Public Health at Lincolnshire County Council, comments: "The focus on low-cost, high quality mainstream technology is vitally important, as is affordability for residents and local authorities in delivering the very best social care provision. “Social care is a high priority for the county council. Based on current calculations, the county will need an additional 17,000 social care workers over the coming 15 years to adequately provide the necessary services, based on how these are currently delivered. “It’s vital that we begin exploring new ways of ensuring high quality, cost-efficient support that tips the balance towards prevention, rather than cure. “Existing technology offers the potential to detect and diagnose early warning signs and proactively alert family members, friends, social care workers or the emergency services, depending on the scenario. We’re very much looking forward to the outcomes of this project which will guide and future-proof emerging plans.” Serco currently works with a number of local authorities to support various elements of council social care processes, including case management, financial controls and IT support. This initiative marks a valuable expansion of Serco’s activity within the social care and health arena. For further information: Serco: www.serco.com Lincolnshire County Council: www.lincolnshire.gov.uk The University of Lincoln: www.lincoln.ac.uk/home

The Carer Digital Now Available Weekly thecareruk.com/backissues

! w,, “We now, “W We use it daily da and would not be without ut it now even the residents residents esid find nd it easy and fun to use. Thank you!” Sandie Evans, Registered Manager, Registerred ed Manager r,, Oakland’s Care Oakland’’s Car Ca arre e Home, Crickhowell !

are order, All tables ar e made to or derr, if you’d like to enquire enquir e on a price guide and time scales for www.inspireddeliveries, just visit their website www .ins spiredinspirations.com inspirations.c com or scan the QR code on the right. For general enquiries, please email ! ! info@inspired-inspirations.com! info@inspir ed-inspirations.com! “We’ve noticed didn’tt “W We’ve notice ed that quieter rresidents esidents who wh didn’ interact too much with others have suddenly been more more e vocal.” Lindsey morre e active ac ctive and mor re Davies, Home Manager, e Manager r, Cwrt Enfys

See the advert on the facing page for details.

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PAGE 42 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Now Is The Time To Go Digital! Stress is one of the most detrimental impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in health and social care today and care providers are finding themselves under immense pressure. They need to do a lot more than they would normally, to deliver the same quality of care as pre-pandemic. On top of this, they don’t have the luxury of having any extra time, with the build-up of workload being a key stress trigger for staff. Care providers must do what they can to reduce the work burden on their staff without compromising the quality of care. There are sustainable technological solutions out there that can reduce stress in social care settings. Our digital care management system, Mobile Care Monitoring, has been proven to save each carer three days a month on administrative tasks. The innovative icon-driven solution reduces stress amongst staff by simplifying tasks and freeing up more time to provide direct care to residents, whilst enhancing communication and facilitating wider teamwork. Staff wellness is important at all times, but especially when people are under stress, and this is where technology can make an instrumental difference. Our Mobile Care Monitoring system, for instance, allows staff to seamlessly plan, record and monitor the care of residents digitally in real-time. The mobile digital care system helps to reduce the time it would take to physically transcribe care notes as staff can record information at the point of care, while also mitigating the risk of errors through innovative icon-driven tools. In addition, the risk of losing informa-

tion is eliminated as all data is recorded in one central portal, which can be viewed anytime by anyone with access. Some recent case studies on care homes utilising digital care technology include Wren Hall, a specialist dementia carenursing home in Nottinghamshire. Its owner, Anita Astle MBE, believes the implementation of Mobile Care Monitoring has enabled her staff to spend more time focusing on caring for the people they are there to support. Anita said: “In a world where time is so precious, the technology has proved to be a powerful tool.” Andrew and Carole Geach, CEOs of Shedfield Lodge, a residential care home near Southampton, believes digital care technology was key to ensuring a healthy and safe working environment for staff. The couple said: “It’s about educating the staff on what you’re implementing and how it’s going to be of better use to them. We want to allow them to spend more time with the residents, which predominantly is what it’s all about.” As we head further into 2021 and further out of the pandemic, care providers across the health and social care sectors must look towards technology to empower staff to utilise their time efficiently and productively. Ultimately, if we are to reduce workplace stress and make the industry a healthier, happier place to work, then the adoption of technology is a step in the right direction to achieving such a utopia. To discover more about the benefits of going digital, or to book a demo of Mobile Care Monitoring, contact 01483 357657 or hello@personcentredsoftware.com or visit www.personcentredsoftware.com

Check EU Employees Right To Work, Warns Bizimply Please Please mention mention THE THE CARER CARER when when responding responding to to advertising. advertising.

Care employers will need to keep clear records of their team members’ immigration and right-to-work status as the UK moves into the post-Brexit ‘hostile environment’ from 1 July. Care workforce specialist Bizimply is warning businesses that they need a clear and accessible record of every employee’s status in order to demonstrate compliance with the regulations. Under UK law, employers face imprisonment and unlimited fines for knowingly employing someone who does not have the right to work in the UK. Conor Shaw, Bizimply CEO, said: “Just as the care sector is bringing its workforce back as the economy reopens, there is a real danger that many businesses now face a significant new challenge as key employees lose the right to work. Of course, there are legal penalties, but with the labour shortage a challenge across the sector, businesses also need to know they have enough trained and experienced staff at all times and at every site.” A leak of Government figures this week shows that around 130,000 of the 820,000 Europeans resident in the UK have yet to apply for Settled Status, despite the hard cut-off of 30 June as the date to apply. Without confirmation of settled status, EU, EEA and Swiss living in the UK lose the right to work, as well as access to healthcare and other benefits. Shaw added: “Although the deadline has been known for some time, the uncertainty over COVID and the challenges of communicating with employees during lockdown means that many businesses may not know the status of every employee. “That won’t be an excuse when the authorities start asking for proof of right to work. UK politicians haven’t

talked about the ‘hostile environment’ over immigration for no reason. Proof both that employees have the right to work, and that employers have checked and recorded that status will be essential.” Employers using Bizimply’s suite of workforce management software can easily and confidentially record all the necessary status confirmation and supporting documentation for employees, and make it available to check if required. Employers can be jailed for five years and pay an unlimited fine if found guilty of employing someone who they know or had ‘reasonable cause to believe’ did not have the right to work in the UK. Details of the Settled Status regulations are at www.gov.uk/eusettledstatus. An employer toolkit is at www.gov.uk/government/collections/eu-settlementscheme-employer-toolkit See the advert this page or visit www.bizimply.com

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.



PAGE 44 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE

Care Vision - Less Admin, More Caring 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 cloud-based 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

The Only Care Home Management Software You Need Those of you who have researched a variety of care home software systems will know that there is no 'one size fits all' with technology. Since we launched onto the market over 15 years ago, we have always remained true to our original vision and knowledge, to listen to what customers need and provide a working solution. We listen to all of the homes who are already part of the CMS family, as well as to those for whom we may have fallen shmt for, and together we continue to develop and grow Ablyss CMS into the sys-

tem that YOU need. You are our greatest critic and we have evolved the system from your feedback. Have you looked at what we can offer lately? It is certainly worth it. We have recently released CMS 8 with new and unique features inspired by our customers' needs. For example, did you know that we now have a facilities management module? Here you can keep track of all your home's assets and repairs, alongside scheduled logbooks and home audits. After all, no matter how excellent the quality of the care you provide we all want an environment to be safe and compliant. We can help you to achieve and evidence this. This is the newest string to our bow, but we continue to enhance and evolve our software which includes: • Recording resident admission and discharge details • Care planning and risk assessments

• Complete historical trail of evaluations • Shift handover and diary reminders • Medical notes, body-map charting and eMar integrations • Individual and home diaries • Messaging system • Accident and incident analysis • Rotas and absence tracking • Training and employee reviews • Design your own assessments and templates • Extensive security and auditing tools. Its time to take a fresh look at software that is as unique as you are. Call us for a free demo or 30 day trial on 01625 535685



PAGE 46 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 64

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Will Care Homes Face an Uncertain Future Without Further Financial Support? By John Rozenbroek, CFO/COO at Capify (www.capify.co.uk) reopen, do care homes really have everything they need to recover from this crisis?

THE NEED FOR GOVERNMENT SUPPORT

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

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

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

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

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

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

Nexus Planning Secures Planning Permission for 67-Bed Care Home

Nexus Planning is pleased to have assisted Frontier Estates in gaining a unanimous approval for a full planning application for a 67-bed care home in Haywards Heath, at a recent Mid Sussex Planning Committee. The proposal at Bolnore Road will involve the demolition of an existing residential property. The care home scheme has been designed to cater for residents in need of high dependency care and will respond to a significant need for care bed

spaces in the area. The scheme was supported by the Haywards Heath Town Council and the Mid Sussex Design Review Panel. Nexus Planning, an award-winning planning consultancy, coordinated the preparation and submission planning application as well as public and stakeholder engagement, on behalf of Frontier Estates. The wider team included Broadway Malyan, Curtins Consulting, i-transport and Tim Moya Associates. Peter Tooher, Executive Director at Nexus Planning Manchester, commented: “It is rewarding to have assisted Frontier Estates on another much-needed care project. The Bolnore Road project makes a welcome addition to Nexus Planning’s growing portfolio of later living projects across the business.” Damian Wood, Development Director at Frontier Estates, added: “Frontier are delighted to have received planning permission for this new 67 bed care home in Haywards Heath. The home will provide 67 fully en-suite bedrooms, a range of facilities and spacious communal areas, state-of-the-art amenities all surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens.”