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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

Issue 68

THECARERUK

PM Sets Out £36bn Tax Increases to “Fix” Social Care

Picture by Pippa Fowles / No 10 Downing Street.

National Insurance contributions will be raised by 1.25% in order to fund Prime Minister (PM) Boris Johnson's plans to “fix” what he says is a "broken social care system". He announced to MPs that he will also include a dividend tax which will increase by 1.25% to fund the reforms with - with this levy designed to target the highest earners who own shares. The Prime Minister had claimed he had a “clear plan prepared” to fix the care crisis in 2019, and six months later won an election promising not to hike

income tax, VAT or National Insurance Contributions (NICs). However, he confirmed NICs will rise 1.25% for both employers and employees in April 2022 in order to raise £12bn a year for both health and care, and this National Insurance rise will eventually be renamed as the Health and Social Care Levy in 2022. Addressing Parliament the PM said: “From next April we will create a new, UK-wide, 1.25 per cent Health and Social Care Levy on earned income, hypothecated in law to health and social care, with

dividends rates increasing by the same amount.” “This will raise almost £36 billion over the next three years, with money from the levy going directly to health and social care across the whole of our United Kingdom.” “This won’t be pay awards for middle management, it will go straight to the front line at a time when we need to get more out of our health and social care system than ever before.”

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EDITOR'S VIEWPOINT Welcome to the latest edition of The Carer Digital! So, the funding problem that is dominated adult social care for decades has been addressed… or has it? Out of the £12 billion raised each year through the new levy less than half is going to social care, and it is not due to kick in until April 2022 I think if we were brutally honest the “world and his wife” knows that this is a very pressing issue, and has been for a long time and one that desperately needed addressing. Every Prime Minister that I can remember in recent memory has promised to address it, but never did. There was always a lot of bluster and suggestion but never anything concrete. I always felt it would take a brave administration to tackle the issue head on! And while the public (and, of course, I include myself) recognised the seriousness of the situation when it came to voting time. Any party which included a levy of any sort to cover the costs of social care found themselves, as I am sure former Prime Minister Theresa May would concur, on the wrong side of public opinion. My own humble opinion is that successive governments “kicked the can down the road”, happy to get through their term of office and leave the problem for the next incoming administration. The result is, of course, an underfunded, overworked and understaffed sector, with staff burnout and morale issues that have been dominant. As a father (and grandfather) of youngsters I recognise an unfair burden has been placed on the younger generation. The younger generation are having to pay increased taxes for the older generation to reap the benefits. Furthermore, those past retirement age do not pay National Insurance contributions whatsoever, and as Margaret Hodge said: “I’m over 66 and so are many of my Parliamentary colleagues. As MPs we earn a very good salary & yet as pensioners we pay no National Insurance contributions. It is deeply unfair that our generation should benefit from the mooted Tory social care policy & not contribute.” Furthermore, I have read reports and watched comments on TV last night expressing concerns that if you live in a £150,000 pound home you are capped at the same rate are somebody living in a £5,000,000 mansion. But, as I have often said over my 12 years of editing THE CARER, there is no easy solution, never will be, and I think we will see a succession of “trade offs” in the coming years to head off future funding issues. Welcome though additional funding is, it is a short term solution when one looks at the bigger picture, and I suspect in 2023 when the levy transfers, allocated by law, to pay for health and social care, and will appear as a separate line on workers’ payslips it will

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EDITOR Peter Adams become an adult social care tax which will increase progressively as workers age. You will also see the National Association of Care Catering (NACC) has unveiled a short-

SALES EXECUTIVES

list for its awards. (See page 12.) We have worked closely with the NACC for many years

Sylvia Mawson

now and I am honoured and thrilled to have been invited to be a judge at the forthcoming

David Bartlett

chef of the year competition taking place next month. I have attended the finals for the past 10 years, and have been hugely impressed at the standards and excellence of the dishes produced particularly when working such tight budgets and often dietary restraint. I have learned that good food really is at the heart of quality care. The physical and mental wellbeing of older, vulnerable and young people in a care setting are fundamen-

Guy Stephenson TYPESETTING & DESIGN Matthew Noades

tally linked to mealtimes, from the nutritional benefits of a varied, balanced, person-cen-

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tred diet to the social and emotional benefits that interacting over food can bring.

Shelly Roche

Making, the role of the care chef vital – so, once again, an absolute honour to have been invited! We would be delighted to share your stories on this topic. We are very fortunate to engage with numerous care homes and organisations throughout of the UK, publishing the most uplifting and heartwarming stories, and I am sure this will bring a smile to many a residence, workers and families faces so please do get your stories in!!! We here at THE CARER- have 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 https://thecareruk.com/free-hr-and-employment-law-webinar-for-care-sectorprofessionals/

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 3

PM Sets Out £36bn Tax Increases to “Fix” Social Care (CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) The key points of the Primer Ministers announcements include: • A UK-wide 1.25 per cent Health and Social Care Levy, based on National Insurance Contributions, will be introduced from April 2022. • To guarantee fairness, all working adults, including those over the state pension age will pay the levy. • The rates of dividend tax will also increase by 1.25 per cent, broadening the type of incomes which will fund the plan, • The highest earning 14 per cent of people are expected to foot an estimated 50% of the bill. • The proposals seek to raise an extra £12 billion per year, to be invested in frontline health and social care across the UK over the next three years, to ensure the NHS can recover from Covid and the health and care system has the long-term resources that it needs. • A cap will be imposed so no-one in England will have to pay more than £86,000 in care costs over the course of their lifetime, equivalent to about three years in care. • People with assets between £20,000 and £100,000 will be expected to contribute to the cost of their care but will also receive means-tested state support. • The new £100,000 limit is more than four times higher than the existing limit of £23,250, meaning many more people will now be eligible for support.

DIFFICULT DECISIONS The Prime Minister said it would be ‘irresponsible’ to pay for the overhaul from borrowing and he had to make ‘difficult’ decision and admitted that he was breaking a manifesto promise not to raise NI, but added: ‘A pandemic was in no-one’s manifesto.’ Adding: "You can't fix the NHS without fixing social care. You can't fix social care without removing the fear of losing everything to pay for social care and you can't fix health and social care without long-term reform. "The plan that this government is setting out will fix all of those problems together." However, Labour's Sir Keir said the new tax broke the Conservatives' pledge at the last election not to raise National Insurance, income tax or VAT.He also said the rise would target young people, supermarket workers and nurses, rather than those with the "broadest shoulders" who should pay more.

SECTOR REACTION Vic Rayner OBE, CEO of the National Care Forum said:“This has been a long time coming – and it is a giant leap forward to get the parliamentary focus on social care, and importantly what it can deliver for each and every citizen. The litmus test for this announcement is the difference it will make to people’s lives. “Bringing more money into the health and care system is crucial – the balance of how that money is apportioned is the thorn in the side. Social care needs significant additional funding now and the initial apportionment falls well short of the additional £7bn funding requirements determined by the Health and Care Select Committee amongst others and we believe the government needs to redress that balance urgently. “However, it is positive to hear the Prime Minister acknowledge the interconnectedness of success between health, care and communities. A truly integrated approach to health and care, with social care as an equal partner in that system will necessarily put people and their needs at the centre, and the balance between the NHS saving lives and Social Care changing lives will need to be determined at ICS level to support independent, thriving citizens. “The dial has finally shifted and at long last the cards are on the table – and for the not for profit social care sector, the brilliant workforce and people receiving care and support – we have to believe there is everything to play for. “Today’s announcement, for all the interest they will garner, do nothing to address the immediate crisis impacting on social care, especially enormous workforce challenges facing the sector. In a recent survey, NCF members provided detailed data outlining what is happening on the ground; colleagues are reporting high levels of vacancies, permanent staff exits at previously unseen levels with most leaving to join health services, retail and hospitality. “The current situation facing the social care workforce is like nothing seen before. The social care workforce has gone from zero to hero and back again, whilst only doing their job. They have been clapped and cheered, worked 24/7 throughout each and every day of the pandemic, and have experienced very high levels of stress and burnout. “For many in social care, while commitments today recognise the need to invest in the social care workforce in the longer term, social care needs urgent action now to support the social care workforce that forms

an essential part of the social care system.” Jennifer Johnston, associate at law firm BLM, said: “Today’s pledge of additional support for social care via a tax rise is welcome, albeit overdue. That said, the reality is that in the first three years, most of the funds raised by this tax increase will be used to support the NHS. Of the £36 billion available in the next three years, only £5.3 billion will be invested in social care – less than 15 per cent. Although the government has promised to spend the majority of the funding on social care after the NHS backlog has cleared in three years, there are no clear parameters set to determine what constitutes a ‘clear backlog’ or guarantees it will happen. “In his statement to the House of Commons, the Prime Minister referred to the Covid-19 pandemic as having highlighted problems in social care, saying that at the outset of the pandemic there were 30,000 patients occupying hospital beds that could have been better cared for elsewhere. However, we have consistently seen that the process of discharging a patient from a healthcare to a social care setting is very complex, with many factors affecting the speed at which they can be discharged from hospital, not just the amount of funding available. Today’s announcement should not be seen as a quick fix for the complex problems the sector faces, which were around long before the pandemic. “With the general population living longer and a larger number of adults requiring social care, especially in later life, funding is desperately needed. The sector’s workers and patients cannot afford to wait.” ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “This, once again, has been a huge opportunity missed for radical, once in a generation reform of the social care system. “If reports are to be believed, of the £36bn promised over three years for health and social care from the new levy, only £5.8bn will be for social care. “That isn’t going to touch the crisis in the sector and will certainly not address the 120,000 vacancies in staffing, which is sending the sector into meltdown on a daily basis as care providers struggle to cover shifts. “It will not fund the proper recruitment and training of the thousands of staff we need, nor will it allow the sector to properly reward those staff who have played such a vital, life-saving role during Covid-19. It is too little and, it looks like being, too late. “This levy will not start until next April and the changes to paying for care until the end of next year. None of this is what we need. We need urgent, root and branch reform and we need it now.” The Government has announced a Health and Social Care Levy to be funded by a 1.25% increase in National Insurance and share dividend taxation. This will create £36bn for health and social care over three years, after the levy comes into effect from April next year. But the ICG said it feared the bulk of the extra money would immediately be swallowed up by urgent NHS needs, leaving social care to pick up the scraps. “It was good to hear the Prime Minister say that he wanted to fix the long-term problem of health and social care which has been cruelly exposed by Covid-19 and it was good to hear him say he wanted to end ‘dither and delay’ over social care,” Mr Padgham added. “But today’s announcement does not do that. Yes, the NHS is urgent, but social care is urgent too and if we do not get the support we need, more and more damage will continue to be inflicted upon the crumbling social care sector and the NHS will be left to pick up the pieces anyway. “We have waited 30 years and currently have 1.5m people not getting the care they need, we should not have to wait any longer. “We didn’t want to hear that plans for long-awaited integration of health and social care would be outlined in a White Paper, ‘later this year’.” Caroline Abrahams, co-Chair of the Care and Support Alliance and Charity Director of Age UK, said: "Our initial assessment is that while the Prime Minister’s announcement doesn't give us everything we wanted and we are worried about the funding, it is definitely worth having and a once in a generation opportunity to improve social care that must not be allowed to slip away."

“At last there’s some hope for a better future and we all stand to gain, since any of us, at any age, could develop a need for care.” "If the Prime Minister’s proposals are put into action he will deserve real credit for breaking a log jam that has held back social care reform for far too long. The intense debate about how to pay for it must not obscure the paramount importance of action being taken now to stabilise and rebuild care, especially after its terrible mauling by COVID-19.” “At £86,000 the cap provides some much needed certainty and removes the fear of care bills spiralling to infinity, though at that level it will help fewer people than many had hoped. A more generous means test is arguably the more significant announcement for most and will result in greater numbers receiving at least some financial help. However, there is a lot of devil in the detail which we need to understand before reaching a final judgement. “The NHS is being given extra funding upfront and social care desperately needs that too. Unless the Chancellor delivers substantially more investment into councils' budgets in the autumn Spending Review there’s a real risk that the Prime Minister’s announcement will fall flat.” “The proposals are broader than many expected and some of the non-cap elements that will be fleshed out later this year have exciting potential to increase the quality and quantity of care on offer to older and disabled people, and their families caring for them, as well as how joined up it is with the NHS, of great importance to many frail older people in particular. We look forward to hearing more. “It’s good to see serious investment in workforce training – though we doubt this will prevent disillusioned staff from continuing to drift away for better paid jobs elsewhere. On the care workforce we wanted the Government to go further and do more to improve terms and conditions.” Cllr James Jamieson, Chairman of the Local Government Association, said: “COVID-19 has brought into sharp relief the challenges facing adult social care, and in many cases exacerbated them, but it has also powerfully underlined the essential value of social care in supporting people to live the life they want to lead. “We recognise that protecting people from ‘catastrophic care costs’ and having to sell their home to pay for care is a government commitment. It is an important first step toward changing the way social care is funded and will help to reduce the burden of costs on people. “It is good that the Government recognises that this alone is not enough to give the nation the social care system it wants and needs and the further announcements around the care workforce, Disabled Facilities Grant and supported housing are helpful. However, there are a range of additional crucial issues which need to be addressed if we are to deliver a care and support system that is fit for the future. The promise of a new adult social care white paper – developed with councils, people who draw on social care and other partners – is positive, but will need to be backed by adequate investment. “More immediately, greater information is needed on what proportion of the new levy will come to social care, including when and how the funding will be distributed. The Spending Review must also set out how immediate and short-term pressures will be addressed, along with funding to improve the quality, quantity and accessibility of care and support, without relying on measures such as the adult social care council tax precept, which raises varying amounts in different parts of the country and is not related to need. “Much of the plan focuses on the NHS, but a sustainable NHS depends on a sustainable social care system, as care and support is essential in its own right in supporting people of all ages to live their best life as well as alleviating pressure on the health service. It is important to remember that, while the NHS backlog needs to be tackled, social care was already under greater pressure pre-pandemic. “This is a hugely complex area and there is much that needs clarifying in the Government’s plan. Over the coming weeks, government therefore needs to work with councils, their partners and those with lived experience, in order to build on today’s potentially helpful foundations and develop a care and support system which is fit for the future.”


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Why The Health And Social Care Levy Does Not Address Social Care’s Immediate Challenges By Barry Price of QCS (www.qcs.co.uk) It has taken almost 20 years for a government to make good on its promise to reform social care, but yesterday the Prime Minister announced the ‘Health and Social Care Levy’. The levy, which will come into effect next April, will largely be paid for by increasing National Insurance contributions by 1.25 percent. It is hoped that the new levy will prevent people in the care system from having to sell their homes, as currently anybody with savings above £23,500 has to fund their own care. Under the new package of reforms, however, the government will finally look to put some of Sir Andrew Dilnot’s ideas into practice, which he put forward in July 2011. Just over a decade ago, Sir Andrew proposed that all care costs should be capped at £35,000 with the state picking up the bill for everything over that amount - apart from board and lodging costs. Yesterday, Mr Johnson announced a cap of £86,000 on the individual care costs over a lifetime, which will come into force from October 2023 in England only. Since the Prime Minister made the announcement, the rolling news channels have been dominated by politicians and the public, some of whom have questioned whether the reforms are credible and fair. The Health and Social Care Levy will cost the average tax payer – including poorly paid working pensioners - an extra £5 a week. However, rich pensioners who have retired – and are more likely to access the care system - will pay nothing. While I don’t wish to be drawn into a debate on funding, it is important to state that currently, according to the King’s Fund, “just under half” of social care costs are spent on “working-age adults”. *

CAN THE HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE LEVY PLUG THE SOCIAL CARE FUNDING GAP? But, the question of who picks up the bill is not the focus of this piece. Instead, I want to use this article to ask if the pledges outlined in the Health and Social Levy are enough to rescue and breathe new life into the social care sector, which, from a funding perspective, has effectively been on life support for the last decade. Will the social care sector, which has been nicknamed the Cinderella Service, finally be given the funding that it deserves, or will the lion’s share of the money be swallowed up by the NHS? The answer is that the devil is in the detail. According to a statement made by the Nuffield Trust, only £5.4 billion of the £36 billion, which will be allocated over the next three years, will actually go to the social care sector. That is likely to leave a considerable funding gap. To really effect change, social care needs assurances from government that the funding will be ring-fenced to social care and also that it is able to put the people receiving the care - and those dispensing it - at the very heart of the decision making process.

THE CARE SECTOR NEEDS FUNDING NOW Most crucially, a portion of funding needs to be allocated now. I don't wish to be pessimistic, but I fear that if funding is even temporarily held back from social care in order for hospital waiting lists to be cleared, it could have a catastrophic effect on the sector. Why? Well, despite demonstrating outstanding care and remarkable resilience throughout the pandemic, it has faced a perfect storm of cuts for many years now. It has survived and even thrived thanks to the superhuman efforts of the millions of UK care workers. The tailwinds of COVID, however, leave the sector in a very vulnerable position. It badly needs funding - and now.

RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION CHALLENGES LIKELY TO INTENSIFY WITHOUT AN INJECTION OF FUNDING The sector needs it to retain and recruit staff, some of whom are leaving the sector for better paid jobs. Only last week, The Guardian ran a story reporting that a care home manager had said that “Amazon’s new warehouse in Nottinghamshire was luring staff with 30% more pay”.** With demand for delivery drivers soaring, it is likely that Nottinghamshire is not the only county where care home staff are being lost to other sectors. You only have to look at online job boards to see that some professional carers earn £9.10 an hour, while the hourly rate for a supermarket that I won’t name stands at £9.70. While I don't wish to be unfair to grocery staff - who put food on supermarket shelves - surely a highly trained care worker - responsible for life-saving tasks - deserves to be paid more? As Sarah Owen, a former care worker turned MP remarked, why should care workers, who are often paid just over the minimum wage, be subjected to an extra tax levy? For many hard-working carers the tax hike will be seen as a wage decrease. To some families even raising tax by £5 may prove significant. It may also leave some to rely on

food banks. So, why not introduce means testing to ensure that only those who can afford to pay the levy actually pay it?

MANDATORY VACCINES However, the clearest and most present of dangers is not competition from other sectors. Instead, it is the government’s decision to make the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory in care homes from November 11. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in vaccines, but the government’s policy could lead to an exodus of care workers as early as September 16, which according to the DHSC is the last date for care workers, who have not been vaccinated, to get their first jab before regulations are enforced in November. While I believe that everyone should be fully immunised, the government may need to re-think its policy and allocate more funding to the care sector to avoid this cliff-edge. Or, another solution might be to level the playing field and make vaccines mandatory across the entire health and care sector. Taking this affirmative action would act as a deterrent for staff leaving one care role and moving to another where vaccines are not compulsory.

INSURANCE The third factor, which is driving this perfect storm is insurance. During the pandemic, insurance for care homes has significantly increased. Last year, one care home manager reported that his insurance premium had risen by 880 percent.*** During the last 18 months or so, exorbitant insurance costs have put some care homes out of business. The government needs to urgently tackle this issue – either by indemnifying care homes against COVID deaths – or by making more funding available to cover insurance costs. Finally, the care sector urgently needs more funding to cover the cost of PPE. The care sector has not had to pay VAT on PPE during the crisis, but this may change. PPE will be needed for many years to come. The government should make the PPE Portal a permanent feature that can be accessed by services as and when it is needed. This would be one way of putting an end to profiteering once VAT increases are applied to PPE. Certainly, if providers are forced to make cuts to services due to funding gaps, PPE should be one area where managers do not have to make compromises.

CAUTIOUS OPTIMISM To conclude, while I am cautiously optimistic about the Health and Social Care Levy, it will only work if the social care sector is allocated a fair share of the funding pot and is given the autonomy to spend it in a way that transforms care. There are more questions than answers at the moment. The government’s announcement yesterday does not address many of the nuanced and complex challenges that are likely to crop up in the future. In light of the funding cap, will private providers remain financially viable or will the cap see high-end providers shrink in number? The government also needs to consider those who find themselves below the threshold. Will it be prepared to pay the fees at the higher rate, or will it become even more common than it is now for vulnerable service users to be forced to access more cost-effective services? And what does the future hold for domiciliary care providers. They form the backbone of the sector, but were not mentioned by the government yesterday? Will they be guaranteed the resources to thrive? Only time will tell if that ends up being the case, but whatever happens, Quality Compliance Systems, the leading provider of content, guidance and standards, and the company that I consult for, will ensure that policies and procedures support providers and service users through any period of major change. To find out more about the QCS or to purchase a subscription, please contact QCS’s team of advisors on 0333-405-3333 or email: sales@qcs.co.uk. * King’s Fund Key facts and figures about social care https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/audio-video/key-facts-figures-adult-social-care ** Care workers in England leaving for Amazon and other better-paid jobs The Guardian By Robert Booth 04.09.21 https://www.theguardian.com/society/2021/sep/04/care-workers-in-england-leaving-for-amazon-and-other-better-paid-jobs *** Coronavirus: 'Colossal' insurance costs threaten to make care homes 'go out of business' Care Choices By Angeline Albert 19.0.20 https://www.carehome.co.uk/news/article.cfm/id/1631860/Colossal-insurance-costs-and-lack-of-covid-cover-threaten-to-make-carehomes-go-out-of-business

Mayor of Droitwich Spa Welcomes New Care Home to the Community Councillor Bill Moy and his Consort, Mrs Dilys Moy, have visited Droitwich Spa’s latest luxury care home development, Woodland View. The Mayor and Mayoress planted the first tree in the substantial grounds of the home as the build moves forward ahead of its grand opening later this year. Woodland View is care provider Ideal Carehomes’ latest development and has benefitted from a £12 million investment. Situated on Woodland Way, just off Pulley Lane, Woodland View will provide 24 hour residential and dementia care for 66 residents, as well as bringing up to 65 jobs to the area once fully staffed. Home Manager, Cindy Hawkins, gave the Mayor and Mayoress a tour of the stateof-the-art facilities including the spacious cinema room, hairdressing salon, vintage tea room with balcony area, luxurious Sky Bar with far-reaching views and wellequipped bedrooms with en-suite wet rooms. The Mayor planted a bay tree to commemorate the visit and as a nod to the ancient myth that planting a tree at a new build home will appease the tree-dwelling spirits which may have been displaced in its construction.

Cindy said, “It’s been wonderful to meet the Mayor and Mayoress of Droitwich Spa and for them to be involved with our home at such an exciting time of the build. The home is coming along nicely and I know the future residents will enjoy living here when we officially open our doors.” The Mayor was particularly interested in the commitment to combatting loneliness in the community, as Cindy explained how dedicated Activity Co-ordinators will provide varied activities and a busy social calendar that is tailored to each resident's interests and hobbies with the aim of helping them make new friends within the home. Councillor Bill Moy said, “We have been extremely impressed with the fantastic facilities and the ethos of the team at Woodland View. Every detail of the home has been thoroughly considered to benefit both residents and staff, from the design of the social areas and bedrooms, the climate cooling system right through to the set up in the laundry room. The older people of our community really deserve to have such great provisions as those on offer at Woodland View.”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 5

Ministers Must End Jab Compulsion To Prevent Care Home Catastrophe Says Union The government must immediately repeal ‘no jab, no job’ laws for care home staff in England to avert a staffing crisis that threatens to overwhelm the sector, UNISON have said. The controversial mandatory vaccination rule is pushing thousands to the brink of quitting care work and ministers are “sleepwalking into a disaster” by failing to act, says UNISON, the largest union in social care. Care home staff have until September 16 to get their first vaccination or face the sack. Despite this fastapproaching deadline, there is no sign the government has a realistic plan to deal with the fall-out from its draconian policy, says UNISON. An exodus has already begun of workers who are hesitant about the jab, or feel they are being bullied into it. UNISON is receiving concerning reports of care homes struggling to meet levels of staffing that comply with safety requirements set by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Staff have contacted UNISON to say they are heartbroken to have to leave the jobs they love. However, many feel totally undervalued and bullying is the last straw for them. The government’s own calculations* estimate that mandatory vaccination could result in up to 70,000 care workers leaving their roles in a sector which already had huge vacancy levels of more than 110,000**.

Mandatory vaccination has been a massive distraction from the core job of care, says UNISON. It has also diverted time and resources from employers and government when they should have been seeking to boost trust and confidence in the vaccine. UNISON is also calling for an urgent cash injection to boost pay to at least the real living wage rate of £9.50 an hour (£10.85 in London), and attract recruits to what are crucial and skilled roles. UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Vaccination remains the way out of the pandemic. But coercing and bullying people can never be the right approach. “Ministers have been told repeatedly that using force instead of persuasion will fail. But they’ve not listened and now their ill-considered policy is backfiring. “The government is sleepwalking into this disaster by not acting. Care is already a broken and underfunded sector that cannot afford to lose any more staff. “The government must scrap the ‘no jab, no job’ rule now. Widespread care home closures could be the consequence if they ignore the warnings. This would be disastrous for elderly people and those who cannot live without care support.”

Sunrise of Winchester Celebrates Former Resident and Olympic Medallist As the country celebrated the heroics of team Great Britain at the Tokyo Olympics this summer, Sunrise of Winchester recognised the remarkable life of their former resident and much-loved Olympic Medallist, Adrian Metcalfe OBE. Adrian lived at Sunrise of Winchester for ten years, before passing away in July of this year. During his career, Adrian set a UK record for the 400m in 1961 and won silver relay medals at the 1962 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, the 1962 European Athletics Championships and the 1964 Summer Olympics. He then moved into broadcasting, as a commentator and then as Head of Sport at Channel 4, whilst holding roles on the International Olympic Committee and International Association of Athletics Federations. In 2001, Mr Metcalfe was awarded an OBE for services to sport and broadcasting. Lynne Mayo, Adrian’s sister, has painted a beautiful artistic interpretation of his life and achievements, in his memory. The painting has been pre-

sented to Sunrise of Winchester. With the help of the Winchester Stroke Team, Lynne first found art while recovering from a stroke aged 64. She now hosts exhibitions of her artwork. Upon retirement, Adrian resided at Sunrise of Winchester, where he became a valued and loved member of the family for ten years. Emma Cole, Reminiscence Co-Ordinator at Sunrise of Winchester, said: “Adrian was a lovely man with an amazing life history. An Olympic champion, circus ringmaster and TV broadcaster to name a few. Adrian continued running daily for as long as he could, and we enjoyed the one-to-one time with him taking him for his daily run. He shall be remembered fondly.” Antoinette Roberts, General Manager at Sunrise of Winchester, said: “My lasting memory of Adrian was the way he played the piano so beautifully, the first time I heard him playing, I thought it was a CD. Also, the thing that really touches us is when the families are also close to us, Adrian’s sister Lynne and his Son Dan are so thoughtful and kind, it’s hard to lose them too.”


PAGE 6 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

The Catering Conundrum

By Alexander Andrews BEng PGCE MIET MRes

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food,” is one of the founding principles of care; attributed to Hippocrates but often segued into obscurity. There is an admirable drive by Care England, spearheaded by Prof. Martin Green to improve the quality of chefs in care homes and therefore the quality of food, but it overlooks a critical factor in this equation. The job a care home chef doesn’t pay a competitive wage. Of course, one would rightly argue that all jobs within care pay at an inadequate rate when one considers the responsibility of the job, the prerequisite training and the physically and emotionally draining nature of the roles. And one would right unless that one believes that a ‘care' badge bears significant compensatory value. At this point I should, I feel, introduce myself. I am a chef in a care home... and I’m in it for the money. I hold a first-class degree in engineering, I’ve just completed a masters by research examining how efficiency and co-creation in the NHS could negate the current deficit and I’m a qualified physics teacher. I've chosen to move away from all of this to work as a chef in a care home because I can earn more money. Before academia called me, I was a successful chef, a job I enjoyed and so have maintained it as a ‘side hustle' through various agencies. Now In post-lockdown Britain hospitality workers are experiencing a worth renaissance. It seems that the deskilling of the industry is coming to an end. Hospitality staff are now a high demand commodity and as such have seen an average wage increase equivalent to 18%. I have found myself eyeing, with increasing surprise, the vacancies which still arrive in my emails; head chef £32k, head chef £36k... head chef £46k! And these aren't executive roles in big hotels or creative leads in starred establishments, these are what are known in the trade as Chef-al-a-Ding or microwave technicians. Stunned though I was I felt no temptation to apply. The memories of the stress, the heat and the antisocial hours still make me shudder. But I still enjoy cooking; I cook for my family most days and that can be a challenge with two vegetarians, another who avoids bird flesh, and fussy 6- and 7-year-olds. I suppose my ideal job, as a chef at least, would be making excellent food for about forty people with plenty of home baking. I would do a job like that very happily. The problem, as has been previously stated, is jobs like that don't pay.

Photo Credit: Duncan Longden

I, like so many other people, have a family to feed. As a result, I can't afford to take on a minimum wage job as it simply won’t cover my bills. To be totally honest my teaching job wasn’t either but that is a whole other article for another publication. But, due to an unfavourable job market it has become very difficult to entice chefs away from high paying, low skill jobs in hospitality and into low paying high skill jobs in care. As a result, homes are forced to use agency chefs, like me, at around 250% of the price they are willing to pay for a fulltime, employed chef. My current role is for an indefinite period- the home holds little hope of finding a chef in the foreseeable future. I find the situation uncomfortable for many reasons. I know I am being paid more than many of my colleagues in the home who do a job I could not, nor would want to do. The whole scenario riles my social conscience. But the wage I am getting is a reasonable one for the skill set I bring. With twenty years as a chef, I have the skills and repertoire to manage the kitchen safely, ensure that food is of excellent quality and tastes delicious. I can also think on my feet for residents who require

something ‘off menu.’ My academic studies have made me a bit of an expert in the area of dementia care from a food perspective; I am well versed in the current research. I have studied texture modified food and enjoy the challenge of making visually appealing purée meals. I have an in-depth knowledge of allergens and fortified diets, diabetes, religious adaptation of menus, vegetarianism, veganism and pretty much anything else you can name. This is because I have both hospitality experience and academic study in my armament. The first course of its kind, which will provide these skills, is being offered by Norwich City College and NACC. Fifteen students have graduated so far. To me this reflects the disinterest of the industry to invest in staff of quality or to provide food which does more than tick the ‘residents-not-starving’ CQC box. Maybe, I’m just a cynic. I believe that the residents in the home which has retained my talents, and all other homes, deserve exceptional food in their twilight years. This is their home, their last home in most cases, and they should expect good food- restaurant quality food, when each and every meal could be the last. This can be provided within a budget if there is a skilled operative in the kitchen. But that is the crux of the matter. How can you attract good chefs when even moderate chefs can command such high salaries in hospitality? And that brings us back to Prof. Green. I wholeheartedly agree with his idea to build care chefs, to train them in the specialist skills required. But the point remains, what is the point? If the industry will not pay the wage the job deserves and that the skilled staff can demand what chance is there of filling these vacancies? Indeed, after the hellish eighteen months care staff have experienced through the pandemic staff in homes up and down the country are choosing to change careers and plenty are looking to the hospitality industry which has found the money to pay staff more. Unless homes are willing to pay a competitive wage, they will haemorrhage staff, be forced to operate at dangerous levels and, to add insult to injury, end up paying more for agency staff to fill the vacancies. This problem will not go away. Honestly, thanks for the money but not for the moral headache.

Morris Care Residents Do Like to be Beside the Seaside! Residents at Isle Court Nursing Home added to their stay-at-home travel passports with a trip to the Great British seaside. Held in the gorgeous gardens at Isle Court, the grounds were decorated to transform the space into a seaside retreat. The scene featured decorations of many an old seaside classic, from striped wind breakers to beach inflatables which transported attendees to memories of childhood family holidays to the beach. Never ones to miss an opportunity, Isle Court Social Life Co-ordinators, Debbie Rees and Christian Lugtu, both dressed in Victorian swimsuits for the day which sparked smiles from all that crossed paths with the pair. The residents were joined by family members and enjoyed homemade fish and chips followed by delicious ice cream from the nursing home ice cream cart. ‘Punch and Judy’ actor, Derek Peasley, provided entertainment for the seaside bunch with a specially themed show for the afternoon. Everyone said it brought back childhood memories seeing the show; and commented what a lovely day they had all had.

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 7

Boris Johnson Visited Westport Care Home Ahead of Social Care Announcement The Excelcare-family were delighted to welcome Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Health Secretary Sajid Javid, and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak to their Westport Care Home ahead of the PM’s planned social care reformation announcement in the houses of parliament. Westport Care Home located in Stepney Green was the chosen home for the visit after being highlighted as a London home of excellence by the PM’s office for managing the risk of Covid-19 exceptionally well, in addition to the whole team being 100% vaccinated prior to the requirement made in law. Upon arrival to the home, the Prime Minster, Health Secretary and Chancellor of the Exchequer met with Osman Ertosun, Owner of Excelcare and his right-arm woman Sam Manning, COO (Chief Operating Officer) to discuss the impact Covid-19 has had on the care home operations, the importance of an ongoing recognition needed for the dedicated and caring frontline team members as well as the need to support care homes with the cost of delivering care. The Prime Minister and his team then spent time with the people

living in the care home, enjoying arts & crafts, connect four and general chats about life; one resident was particularly delighted to be able to tell the PM that he is engaged and soon to be wed, of which the PM replied ‘I’ve not long done that too’ – this created laughter amongst all and enabled the visit to open out to team members for engaging chats and selfie’s with the special guests, before everyone enjoyed a good sing-song out in the sunshine in the care home’s garden. Kathleen, who has lived at the home since September 2020, said she felt very privileged as the PM visited her room by special invitation so that Kathleen could show how homely her bedroom was and a chance to chat about how much she enjoys living at Westport Care Home. Elbow farewell’s and waves were given to all by Boris, Sajid and Rishi – leaving everyone at the home feeling very honoured and delighted to have been the chosen care home for this very special visit.

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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Care Sector Recruitment Crisis “More Action Less Words” By Tony Stein, Chief Executive, Healthcare Management Solutions (www.hcsolutions.co.uk)

In relative terms, you can argue that the pay is no worse than in many other occupations, however the responsibility is huge, the skills needed are extensive, and the pressure to meet the increasing needs of regulators, commissioners, and other agencies intense. Providing personal care is not, in itself, the problem. It’s the processes for delivering and recording that care that are incredibly hard. Remember that recording what you’re doing all day is not so difficult if you’re involved in a mechanistic or repetitive process. You can tick a pre-flight checklist off each time you prepare to take a plane off the ground (petrol, tick, two wings, tick, passengers, tick – you get the drift), that’s easy. When you’re dealing with people, every single interaction is different and how you record that interaction requires an element of judgement. If you get it wrong the consequences can be severe, leading to significant consequences not just for the carer involved, but also for the service and all its stakeholders.

THE GOVERNMENT AND REGULATORS DON’T HELP As someone who’s been operating care services for over two decades now, you’d think that I’d have got used to the challenges that the sector constantly throws our way. I’ve lost count of the times that we thought that things couldn’t get any worse, and believed that finally, the governmet would have to take action to help resolve some of the longterm challenges. Well, I’m sad to report that things are getting worse rather than better.

WHY IS IT SO HARD TO RECRUIT? Those reading this will be all too familiar with the issues of recruitment and retention in the care sector. It’s not just difficult to achieve full employment, it’s pretty much impossible, so why is this? Caring is hard work, but it is a wonderfully rewarding occupation. Those who find their way into caring, often, stay. Spending your days in someone else’s home, ensuring that their needs are met, that they are happy and cared for is a privilege that beats sitting in an office or on a checkout in many ways. So, why is it so difficult to recruit staff? First and foremost, the pay isn’t great. Psychologically, paying someone the National Minimum Wage sends a powerful message about how you value their service.

Operators are told that they need to ensure that they’re doing all they can to support the mental health and well-being of care workers who do this amazing work. You then see the Scottish government instigating a police investigation into every single Covid-related care home death, which makes those who experienced first-hand the trauma of seeing those in their care succumb to the virus, feel like criminals. We have the CQC publish a league table of care home covid deaths which, without understanding and presenting the underlying causes, serves absolutely no useful purpose except, again, serving to make those working in these services feel like they’ve been publicly shamed. Why would anyone want to subject themselves to this for Minimum Wage? More recently, the government decided to make the Covid-19 vaccination mandatory for all care home workers. I shan’t dwell upon the fact that it was only a few months ago that everyone was told that achieving an 80% rate of vaccination within the service provided an acceptable level of protection for those living and working there. We predict that by the time we get to the 16th of September – the latest date by which a care worker could receive their first vaccination in order to have had their second in time for the 11 November deadline – we will have 4% of our workforce unvaccinated. For us, that means we’ll have to lose

around 106 members of staff. These are team members that we’ve invested time and money into, in recruitment and training. If we can’t replace them, we’ll have to attempt to fill the gaps with agency workers at up to double the cost. I wonder if the government will foot that bill?

WHAT’S THE SOLUTION? So, as an operator, what do we do? Well, we could increase pay. Providers serving the private pay part of the market are already paying the National Living Wage and more, because they can afford to. Those reliant on local authority fees are, sadly, not so fortunate. We’re anticipating a LA fee increase of 2-3% next April. Those LA’s that choose to pay more may well balance the books by placing fewer people into care which, at a time when the elderly population is increasing, simply means more unmet need and, for the operators, more empty beds. We could look to bring in workers from overseas. There are many who claim that Brexit has added to the staffing problem. It would be helpful if the government would add entry level care workers to the shortage occupation list. We need to make caring an attractive career choice. This needs help from everywhere. It needs operators to treat their staff with respect, provide them with decent facilities, training, and support. It needs the regulator to act more intelligently around inspection. To stop making carers feel inadequate, intimidated, and guilty when things occasionally go wrong. It needs governments to stop trying to shrug off blame for the pandemic deaths onto carers who did everything in their power to protect the people that they support and to stop pushing a university degree as a must-have if children are to have any prospects. Vocational jobs are vital to a healthy society. It needs for the public to start to appreciate those doing this incredibly worthwhile job. We need educators to promote the value of caring for others so that more see this as a genuine career choice. In conclusion, things are tough just now but if they are to get any better within the foreseeable future, we need things to start to change right now. This means more action and less words.


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Charities Unite To Tackle Health Inequalities People’s voices and lived experiences will continue to be at the centre of health policy development and work to level up the UK, as the government welcomes new members to the voluntary community and social enterprise (VCSE) Health and Wellbeing Alliance. Backed by £2 million a year, members including Age UK, Barnardo’s, Homeless Link, Hospice UK, National Autistic Society and Samaritans, will work together to promote good health and tackle inequalities across the UK. The refreshed 19 Alliance members will ensure strong representation across the broadest range of lived experiences. They will represent the views of social care workers and older people, people bereaved by suicide, children and young people, people with learning disabilities and autism, those with mental health conditions, LGBTQ+ communities and minority communities, including refugees and Gypsy, traveller and Roma communities. For example, pregnancy charity Tommy’s, heading up a maternity and neonatal consortium, will ensure views from a maternity and child loss perspective are represented in policy decisions ahead of the Women’s Health Strategy launching later this year and the British Red Cross will represent all those affected by crisis, including those who

have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 such as refugees and asylum seekers. Health Minister, Helen Whately said: “The Health and Wellbeing Alliance is one of the key ways to ensure a range of voices are heard and reflected in government policy – their insight is invaluable. “Over the last few years members have made an enormous contribution to a number of important policy developments ranging from improving access to services for groups affected by health inequalities and more recently ensuring the COVID-19 vaccination campaign reaches all communities. “This refreshed membership of 19 charities is a fantastic opportunity to ensure we continue to hear from the most underrepresented voices and make sure important health messages reach those they affect the most.” The new Office for Health Promotion will also launch later this year and will spearhead national efforts to level up the health of the nation and close the gap on disparities. The Health and Wellbeing Alliance is a key element of the Health and Wellbeing Programme and the alliance has already helped shape poli-

cy-making. The Alliance’s work will continue to be of the utmost importance in developing guidance to protect our most vulnerable communities and ensure communities are made aware of important public health announcements that affect them through direct communication. Naomi Phillips, Director of Policy and Advocacy, British Red Cross: “The British Red Cross is proud to become a member of the Health and Wellbeing Alliance and work with partners from the statutory and voluntary sectors to promote equality of access, experience and outcomes across our health and social care system. “COVID-19 has highlighted more than ever that where you are born, grow-up, live and work affects your health. Over the past year, health inequalities have been exposed and exacerbated – but there’s also a renewed impetus to work across specialisms and sectors to address the issue and its underlying factors. Working with and through the Alliance, through fresh research with a focus on policy and practice change, the British Red Cross is committed to ensuring people can access the care and support they need, without falling through the gaps – no matter who they are or where they live.”

The Walk Moray Project Receives Dementia Friendly Walking Recognition A Moray wide walking project has been awarded a prestigious Dementia Friendly Walking accolade from Scottish walking charity Paths for All. The Health and Social Care managed project currently offers 3 Dementia Friendly Health Walks in Elgin, Fochabers and Burghead, with another 6 planned. Currently, the project provides a total of seventeen free Health Walks across the region to support people to make new friends, appreciate nature, build up their stamina and feel healthier. The Dementia Friendly Walking accreditation from Paths for All is designed to reassure anyone living with the condition and their carers that the short, low-level walking routes have been risk assessed, are fully accessible and a friendly welcome is provided from trained Volunteer Walk Leaders, who will be following the latest Covid-19 government guidelines. Prior to the pandemic the project had a dedicated team of 52 volunteers to lead their Health Walk programme. 13 of these volunteers have attended Paths for All’s online Dementia Friendly Walking training. This provides them with the skills and knowledge to support people with the lifelong condition to live well and stay connected to their community, for as long as possible, through providing free easy outdoor exercise. The volunteers have also benefited from Age Scotland’s dementia awareness training. Working with the Dementia Frailty Nurse co-ordinators based in every Moray GP surgery, Age Scotland and Alzheimer Scotland staff have worked together with Walk Moray’s co-ordinator to link their services

together. Wendy Menzies, Dementia Adviser with Alzheimer’s Scotland, Moray branch said: “I’m really pleased to see the development of Dementia Friendly Health Walks in Moray. It’s great to be able to signpost people living with dementia and their carers to walks where the leaders have some understanding of the challenges those participating may be facing and are able to create an inclusive environment for the people participating.” “This has many benefits from social interactions with others, exercise, and to being part of something and feeling included in their community.” Carl Greenwood, Senior Development Office at Paths for All praised the North East for taking the lead in providing community services for people living with dementia. He said: “Well done to Walk Moray, and their volunteers, for providing Dementia Friendly Health Walks to support people with dementia and their carers to enjoy time outdoors to look after their health and wellbeing.” “It is estimated that there are around 90,000 people living with dementia in Scotland and around two-thirds are living at home. Many people find that after a dementia diagnosis they lose their friendship connections and become lonely. It is therefore vital, especially with the Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns stopping group activities, that there are regular activities to join where everyone can feel included and part of their community. This is exactly what Dementia Friendly Health Walks across Moray are achieving.”


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Additional £5.4 Billion For NHS Covid Response Over Next Six Months

The NHS will receive an extra £5.4 billion over the next six months to support its response to COVID-19 and help tackle waiting lists, the Prime Minister and Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid have announced. The funding will immediately go towards supporting the NHS to manage the immediate pressures of the pandemic. This includes an extra £1 billion to help tackle the COVID-19 backlog, £2.8 billion to cover related costs such as enhanced infection control measures to keep staff and patients safe from the virus and £478 million to continue the hospital discharge programme, freeing up beds. The additional £5.4 billion brings the government’s total investment to health services for COVID-19 so far this year to over £34 billion, with £2 billion in total for the NHS to tackle the elective backlog. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “The NHS was there for us during the pandemic – but treating Covid patients has created huge backlogs. “This funding will go straight to the frontline, to provide more patients with the treatments they need but aren’t getting quickly enough. “We will continue to make sure our NHS has what it needs to bust the

Covid backlogs and help the health service build back better from the worst pandemic in a century.” The government has been clear that the NHS will get what it needs to recover its usual services and deliver quality care to patients. The waiting list for routine operations and treatments such as hip replacements and eye cataract surgery could potentially increase to as high as 13 million. While today’s extra £1 billion funding will go some way to help reduce this number, waiting lists will rise before they improve as more people who didn’t seek care over the pandemic come forward. £478 million of this new funding has been dedicated to continue the hospital discharge programme so staff can ensure patients leave hospital as quickly and as safely as possible, with the right community or athome support. This will free up thousands of extra beds and staff time to help the NHS recover services. The government has also invested £500 million in capital funding for extra theatre capacity and productivity-boosting technology, to increase the number of surgeries able to take place. This funding is for England only. The devolved administrations will receive up to £1 billion in Barnett consequentials in 2021-22. The final amount will be confirmed and allocated at Supplementary Estimates 2021-22. Commenting on the announcement Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation and Saffron Cordery, deputy chief executive of NHS Providers said: “The NHS has been desperately seeking clarity on its budget for the second half of the year and the government has now delivered that certainty with this £5.4 billion announcement. The NHS can now get on with the huge task it has ahead of we anticipate

will be one of the most challenging winters the service has ever faced. The task for the government now is to follow up in its spending review with the extra £10 billion a year the NHS will need over the next three years to avoid patient services from being cut. “In return, the NHS will do what it needs to do to manage the ongoing threat from Covid-19 and make inroads into the huge backlog of care that has built up. This funding clarity comes late in the year but it means hospital, ambulance, mental health, community and primary care services can finally plan their services knowing the budget they have available. But while this funding is welcome, the NHS will be held back by major staff shortages that will make it much harder to clear the backlog. This isn’t a short-term fix – we are looking at five to seven years to clear the backlog. “As well as the NHS playing its part, we also need the public to continue to follow the Covid guidance around mask wearing and social distancing, as well as only using services like A&E when necessary. There has been a lot of negativity towards online consultations from parts of the media, but these are proving to be effective when they are deemed appropriate for individual patients. Contrary to reports, GP practices have remained open throughout the pandemic and will continue to provide face-to-face assessments when needed. But given Covid infection rates remain high, and with schools now open and workers returning to offices, we must be able to run services safely in order to avoid GP practices being closed due to outbreaks of Covid. “The coming winter is going to be incredibly tough, but have a chance of getting through this if the government, NHS and public continue to work together to manage the ongoing threat from Covid while starting to make inroads into the backlog of care.”


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Helping Care Homes To Be More Social With Covid-19 having an unprecedented impact on the care sector, many care homes have found themselves in the spotlight and under pressure from concerned relatives not being able to see their loved ones. At times like this good communication is key. Here, Jessica Pardoe, Head of Social Media at Source PR, outlines how care homes should use social media platforms and why it’s important to have a strategy in place to make the most of these important platforms. In the increasingly digital world, social media should be an integral part of any care home’s marketing and communications strategy. The platforms provide a unique opportunity to engage with customers and carers, while allowing the businesses to share news, best practice as well as its personality to followers. Here we outline a top-line guide as to how to make the most of the platforms and to build that all essential online presence. Creating direction The natural place to start is with a strategy and plan that delivers on your objectives. This might be a 6 month or full year plan, but should detail who are your audiences, what messages you want to convey and what platforms are most appropriate. It should also include a calendar that includes any relevant dates, both for your care home and the wider industry, and a focus for each month depending on the wider objectives. It’s important to also be aware of any awareness days relevant to your home and residents such as Dementia Awareness Week (17th-23rd May) and #GladToCareWeek (5th July – 9th July). Consider a posting schedule, which includes how often you want to post and on what platforms. Importantly, also work out who has responsibility for updating whether you are doing it internally or using some outsourced support.

WHAT CHANNELS WORK BEST? Think about your audiences and where they may be found. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are the most common and provide regular, informal updates to followers. LinkedIn has a more corporate audience, that may be beneficial for investors or if looking to attract new employees. Finally, keep abreast of developments and new opportunities that arise from new and emerging platforms. For example, and perhaps more unorthodox, TikTok is a light-hearted video sharing platform that more and more care homes are using to communicate fun and entertaining messages.

WHAT TO POST AND WHEN?

From experience, it’s ideal to post around 2-3 times every week. Be regular but don’t ‘spam’ the feed of your followers. Your content will depend on your objectives, but as a starter for ten we find that the following posts work well and attract high levels of engagement: • ‘Need to know’ updates – sharing company news, developments and important information for customers • People stories – share profiles to allow audiences to get to know the people that are looking after their loved ones. Posts featuring residents also add personality to your offer and can show the caring side of the home • Sharing relevant articles, thoughts and updates help position yourselves as industry leaders and can highlight the best practices you have in place • Know when to spend. For a small fee, boosted posts can help take your messages to a wider and specifically targeted audience • Remember pictures speak a 1,000 words and video is even better!

ENGAGING WITH STAKEHOLDERS As well as proactively posting on social media, your care home should also consider how it interacts with users. It’s a good idea to devise an established tone of voice and method of replying to comments and messages on social media. It’s also wise to have a designated person (or small team) to manage the platforms as having too many involved may upset the routine. Equally, it’s important to convey the right message and not to make grammatical errors or say the wrong thing as this could have ramifications on your care home and brand image.

EMPLOYEE SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIVITY Though you cannot dictate what your employees do on social media, and certainly not in their own time, controversial posts that can linked to your company can be damaging. As such, it’s a good idea to have guidelines in place amongst your staff that might include: • Zero tolerance for bigotry, misogyny, or any hatred. • No confidential information should be shared • Only selected individuals should access company accounts • The internet is a public place and any comments made online can be linked back to the care home at any time Giving your staff the option to state on their social media channels that “views are their own”, however if something very controversial is brought to light, this seldom acts a safety barrier for your company and therefore the action should really be around prevention of incidents.  

HAVING ‘JUST IN CASE’ PLANS IN PLACE Finally, in the case of an incident at the home or online, it’s always a good job to enlist help from professionals. Whether you work with a PR and social media agency to manage all of your social media channels, or have them on your radar for crisis communications, you should have contingency plans in place should anything go wrong. Social media is here to stay and, if done well, provides an unparalleled means for care homes to communicate more directly and be more social with their customers.

NACC Awards 2021 Shortlist Unveiled The National Association of Care Catering (NACC) has unveiled the inspirational individuals and teams shortlisted for the NACC Awards 2021. The prestigious awards recognise and celebrate the innovation, excellence and dedication within care catering and the unsung heroes across the sector that go above and beyond every day for the benefit of their residents, service users, customers and colleagues – from care homes to community services, including Meals on Wheels and Luncheon Clubs. The overall winners will be announced and presented with their awards in front of NACC members, industry colleagues, friends and guests at the NACC Awards 2021 gala dinner. This special event takes place on Thursday 7th October 2021 at the East Midlands Conference Centre, Nottingham. The finalists are: The Triumph Over Adversity Award, sponsored by Bullseye Food Packaging The Hertfordshire Independent Living Service Team Anwar Kajee, Head of Hospitality, Country Court Denise McEvoy, Head of Care Services, Harrogate Neighbours Housing Association Paul Robottom, Owner/Director, Signature Dining Care Establishment of the Year Award, sponsored by Hobart Invicta Court Care Home Long Close Retirement Home Mill House Catering Team Meals on Wheels Award, sponsored by apetito Harrogate and Ripon Food Angels Nottinghamshire County Council Meals at Home Team

The Bevy Community Pub The Umbrella Café West Sussex County Council Catering Team of the Year Award, sponsored by CaterCloud Care UK Food and Hotel Services Team Catering Team of Sunrise of Sonning Country Court Mill House Catering Team Catering Manager of the Year Award, sponsored by Unilever Food Solutions Rida Diab, Chef Manager, Royal Star & Garter-Surbiton Natalie Jordon, Chef Manager, BUPA Beacher Hall Stuart Keown, Senior Dining Services Coordinator, Sunrise of Banstead Dianne Lilley, Hotel Services Manager, Care UK Residential Care Services Daisy Slavkova, Head of Hospitality, Elsyng House

Our Care Catering Hero Award, sponsored by Premier Foods Adriano Carvalho, Dining Service Coordinator, Sunrise of Sonning Luke Webb, Second Chef, Mill House Care & Dementia Home The winners of the following coveted awards will be revealed at the gala awards dinner: NACC Region of the Year Award, sponsored by Meiko Pam Rhodes Award, sponsored by Anglia Crown National Chair’s Award Sue Cawthray, National Chair of the NACC, said: “The past year has continued to be an incredibly challenging time for care caterers as we continue to navigate and adapt to the impact of the covid-19 pandemic. Care caterers up and down the country have pulled out all the stops to remain agile and innovate in the face of obstacles, changing pressures and new ways of working. We have been continually impressed by the dedication, ingenuity and sheer tenacity of our members and care catering colleagues. It’s for this reason that the NACC Awards in 2021 are so very important. It’s crucial that we take this time to pause, reflect, recognise and celebrate the fantastic efforts and achievements of those that enhance the quality of life and wellbeing of so many older and vulnerable people through good food, nutrition and uplifting mealtime experiences. “The NACC Awards 2021 are even more special this year as once again we will be able to celebrate with colleagues and friends in person. It’s going to be a wonderful evening and a highlight of what’s been another difficult year. I, for one, cannot wait to honour the amazing people that work within the care catering sector. I wish all the finalists the very best of luck.” For more information on the NACC Awards 2021 and the NACC visit www.thenacc.co.uk

Care Home Group Rolls Out Innovative Dementia Training Amongst Its Staff A care home group is enrolling staff in innovative, experiential training designed to put them in the same position as those living with the condition. Wellbeing Care, a family-run group of care services has enrolled staff in a revolutionary new training programme designed to enable participants to understand how to communicate with people living with dementia and to recognise behaviours that are often a way of telling them something. The ‘Dementia Interpreter’ course works by placing people in the same situation as those living with dementia. By slowly taking away their ability to speak, see, hear, and even use body language, participants are forced to find new ways to communicate. In the process, participants experience first-hand the isolation, frustration and anxiety often felt by those living with dementia – and they start to mirror the way they communicate without realising. By spending some time in their world, delegates complete the course with an increased understanding of dementia’s impact and a heightened sense of empathy for those affected. Amongst the first to undertake training was Joy Henshaw, Registered Operations Manager at Wellbeing Care. Joy’s day-to-day job role entails overseeing budgets, con-

ducting audits and preparing care training and its subsequent implementation across the services, whilst additionally overseeing training practices for all services to maintain compliance. With her newly acquired Dementia Interpreter qualification, Joy will be responsible for training staff across each of Wellbeing Care’s homes, helping to drive improvements across the group’s dementia services. An example of the team’s collaborative nature, the eventual aim is that all 153 staff members at Wellbeing Care will be qualified Dementia Interpreter upon completion of training. They can then utilise the skills and knowledge acquired through this course to deliver exceptional, empathetic dementia care to residents. Speaking of her participation in the course, Joy said: “Training as a Dementia Interpreter for Wellbeing Care was an informative and humbling experience. The course has helped me develop a much deeper understanding of how those living with dementia must feel and the subsequent impact on their behaviour. I believe this training will result in improved services to the provision of care we give to those who are living with this condition daily and I can’t wait to share my newfound knowledge with the rest of the team.”


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 13

G20 Ministers To Collaborate On Bolstering Health Security, Vaccine Confidence and Antimicrobial Resistance G20 Health Ministers have united to pledge global action to improve future health security, increase vaccine confidence and tackle antimicrobial resistance. The G20 Health Ministers’ Meeting, which took place in Rome, Italy, focused on building on strong cooperation and collaboration to end the COVID-19 pandemic and support recovery around the world, and to continue contributing to better prevent, detect and respond to global health threats and emergencies. A Health Declaration with commitments from all G20 countries has been published today (Monday 6 September 2021). The nations agreed to work together to enhance timely global access to safe, affordable and effective COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics, building on the work led by the Prime Minister at the UKhosted G7 earlier this year for these three interventions to be available within 100 days of a future pandemic threat being identified. To protect one of the pillars of medicine, antimicrobials that protect against infection, the G20 commits to building capacity for surveillance of antimicrobial use and resistance. A key focus of future action will be on support for the development of new safe and effective antimicrobials, in particular antibiotics, and incentivising the production of low-cost, affordable generic antimicrobials to safeguard the ability to fight infections for future generations. Meeting counterparts on his first international visit as Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid made clear the UK’s position on the need for COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial participants to have their vaccination status recognised globally.

Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid said: “The UK has led the way on the international response to this pandemic because no one is safe until we are all safe and international collaboration is vital to boosting global health security. “These G20 Health meetings have been an excellent opportunity to work together to strengthen our collaboration in combating COVID-19, through rooting out dangerous misinformation, boosting vaccine confidence and protecting the rights of clinical trials volunteers who have saved lives by taking part in vital medical research. “By working together, harnessing scientific progress and industry innovation, we can help protect people in every corner of the planet from future health emergencies, including the silent pandemic of AMR, which threatens the fabric of modern medicine.” To promote vaccine confidence, G20 Health ministers agreed to implement the most effective, culturally appropriate, and science-based public communication. This will help tailor reliable information to specific communities, combat misinformation and improve vaccine uptake. Overall the UK has one of the highest vaccine uptake rates in the world and vaccine hesitancy has fallen among ethnic minority groups from 22% in the Jan-Feb survey to 9% at the most recent wave (May-June). The government has expanded the Community Champions Scheme so that communities have trusted local leaders who can help answer questions about the vaccine and work with the NHS and public health teams to support local communities.

Resident’s Joy As Granddaughter’s Wedding Comes To Ivy Court Care Home Ivy Court Care Home, in Norwich, hosted a garden party earlier this month incorporating a themed family wedding event that took place in their beautiful courtyard garden. The inspiration for the event which reunited loved ones, came when it was discovered that Ivy Court resident Thelma was unable to attend her granddaughter’s wedding due to the pandemic. The Ivy Court team couldn’t resist the opportunity to host a second special day for the happy couple so that Thelma could be part of the wedding and see her granddaughter in her wedding dress. The Ivy Court team took care of all the arrangement to re-create a small part of the wedding day including decorations and a blessing ceremony from local Reverend Di Rowlandson to go along with the pre-planned Ivy Court family garden party. The chef whipped up a beautiful three tier wedding cake and laid out a lovely buffet so residents and their families could be treated to an afternoon of food and entertainment. Residents, family members and staff were encouraged to dust off their party shoes and dress for the occasion. Home Manager Bea Bialasik said, “We were very humbled to be

able to host and be part of this special event, especially after the difficult year people have suffered with the pandemic. Even though we still have strict Covid-19 policies in place we were able to limit numbers but still re-unite families and create a memorable day for all.” The official wedding of Thelma’s granddaughter Jaymie and Nigel

Elliot-Barnes took place at the end of August. Their special day was celebrated with just close family and friends. The bride and groom very much enjoyed their wedding but were heartbroken about the absence of Jaymie’s beloved nanny. After the event at Ivy Court Jaymie said, “We want to say a huge thank you to the Ivy Court Care Home for helping us with this special day and the blessing of the rings. Thank you for allowing us to share this with my nanny, Thelma. “It was very special to us to be able to see such delight in her face and to fulfill her wishes in seeing me in my bridal dress. The staff, food and help was second to none. If we decide to renew our vows in time to come then we may be knocking at the door. The sun shone on the happy couple and Jaymie and her groom where thankful to be given the opportunity to take some all-important wedding day photos with her nanny and share this magical moment with her and her Ivy Court family. Overall, the garden party was a huge success and it was wonderful to see families back together sharing special time with their loved loves.

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THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 15

Sector “Left In The Dark” On Vaccination Guidance Says Care England Care England has today written to the Minister of State for Social Care at the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to emphasise the serious and growing concerns in relation to the absence of central guidance and support regarding vaccination as a condition of deployment, particularly around exemptions, the wider consultation, boosters and flu. Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “We are now under two weeks away from the 16 September, which represents the last date for care home workers to get their first dose so that they are fully vaccinated by the time the regulations come into force. We are yet to receive any clarity as to when we can expect the process or guidance around exemptions to be launched. This continued lack of clarity undermines the workability of the policy and only accentuates the current workforce issues within the sector.” Within the Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination of people working or deployed in care homes: operational guidance it states that, “Guidance for certification is being developed and we [the DHSC] will add a link to this guidance here as soon as it’s pub-

lished.” However, this guidance has not been published, to date. Compounding this issue, the policy is exclusive to residential adult social care settings which has continued to undermine the parity between the NHS and social care. Our membership has evidenced that the policy is already impacting the recruitment of staff; the policy has created a two-tiered system. Staff who work in residential care who do not want to be vaccinated are likely to transfer into home care or the NHS. As such, clarity in relation to when the wider consultation, which will encompass the wider social care sector, the NHS and flu vaccine, needs to be provided as a matter of urgency. Martin Green continues: “Providers are in the midst of a perfect storm. The sector is operating against a backdrop of a multitude of workforce pressures and this lack of clarity only compounds these issues. We implore the Department to remain transparent with the sector and give it the help that it needs, as after all this is a centrally imposed policy which the sector is now having to manage, largely without central support.”

Please Do Pay Us A Visit! Stand E116 Dementia Care & Nursing Expo There's just 2-weeks to go until the Dementia, Care & Nursing Home Expo returns to NEC Birmingham on 15 - 16 September, 2021 to help grow sustainable social care business models. We here at the CARER are delighted to be media partners and exhibitors at the Dementia, Care & Nursing Home Expo. This is one of the first opportunities to meet face to face with people involved at all levels of adult social care, care home owners, managers, work is at different levels and different departments, industry profes-

sionals and observers, suppliers of all kinds, all under one roof! Trade shows or a fantastic opportunity to get feedback, and engage with those at the coalface. Never as important than now, after 18 long months of Covid induced turmoil devastating the sector, and the looming issue of mandatory vaccines, we will be there on stand E116 to hear and listen to your comments so please do pay us a visit! To register to attend, simply click and activate your personal e-ticket at https://tinyurl.com/k3hhkwe8 - it's that simple!


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Frantic Care Home Owner Forced to Draft in Staff with Covid A care home was forced to draft in staff who have Covid-19 because it had nobody else to care for its 12 residents. The nightmare scenario happened at the Caledonia home in Holyhead where 11 of the residents have Coronavirus themselves. Owner Ann Bedford said the 15-bed home which specialises in dementia care only survived the weekend because two members of staff who had tested positive for Covid agreed to man the night shift, caring for the residents who also have the virus. She took the desperate step after being told by the Isle of Anglesey Council that they did not have anybody available that they could send to help. According to Ms Bedford, there was already a recruitment crisis in social care before the pandemic began and the problem was now even worse. Ms Bedford has run the Caledonia since 1987, but she said it has been increasingly difficult to recruit staff over the last decade. It normally has a core of between 13 and 15 staff, including a manager, two full time senior carers, a rota of approximately 11 part time care staff, two cooks and two cleaners. But over the weekend, with so many of the team off ill or self-isolating, they had no night staff and only three day staff, no cleaners and only one cook. She said: “Even before Covid impacted on us, residential homes were struggling to recruit and now there is absolutely no spare capacity in the system, nowhere to turn. “I have never known a situation as bad as we faced over the last weekend. As a matter of course we have contingency plans in place to cope in emergencies but even these buckled under the strain. My heart sinks when I think about for the weeks and months ahead. “We felt abandoned and alone. I called on social services for help but they were facing their own emergencies. The shortage of carers on Anglesey is at dangerous levels and is being intensified by the pandemic. “I contacted one reputable care sector recruitment agency and their reaction when I asked for temporary staff was ‘You must be joking’. They were overwhelmed by pleas from desperate care home owners.” I cannot praise enough the two staff who volunteered to come in

despite having the virus. “I feel desperately sorry that we were in a position where we had no choice other than to call on them. The night-shift is tough and extremely tiring. It really knocked them for six and both these staff are now suffering much more from the symptomatic effects of Covid. “I am so grateful to them but this is a situation which should not have been allowed to happen.” All the residents of Caledonia care home are double vaccinated, including the 11 of them who have tested positive. Ms Bedford, who has tragically lost four close personal friends to the virus, said: “Thankfully it is true to say that our affected residents could be a lot more ill if they had not been vaccinated. “But it is also a fact that they still have symptoms and some still feel very unwell. The pandemic has not gone away and we should not be deceiving ourselves that it has. I know of several other care homes in Anglesey where residents are also positive. We have taken every precaution there is, but it has still managed to get in. “We have been through so much already I really don’t know how much more we can take. “I urge those in authority not to forget that if

social care provision crumbles then so does the NHS. We are a vital support to the NHS and as another hard winter sets in that support will be needed more than ever. The Caledonia is now in lockdown, unable to accept any more residents and closed to visitors until September 29. Ms Bedford also runs another small scale facility four miles away, the 15-bed Plas Dyffryn care home. She said: “At one stage over the weekend the authorities advised us to transfer staff from there to Caledonia but that would put staff and residents at Plas Dyffryn at increased risk. “It is also not feasible because we simply do not have enough care staff on our books to stretch that thinly, and the Caledonia is specialised for dementia care so staff here need to be trained in those highly specific skills. “The sad truth is that we should not be in a position where such desperate measures are even on the table. We are in a more precarious state than ever before.” Mario Kreft MBE, the chair of Care Forum Wales, said: “My heart goes out to Ann, the staff, the residents and their families for this terrible predicament which is not of their making. “Quite simply, the Caledonia was placed in a totally impossible position, and it really should not have come to this. “Ann and her team have been nothing short of heroic over these past 18 months and the Isle of Anglesey Council were not able to provide the support they required in their hour of need. “There has been a deepening recruitment crisis is social care for many years and the situation has been exacerbated by the pandemic. “The situation in which the Caledonia finds itself is sadly far from unique. Care homes and domiciliary care companies are having an absolute nightmare in terms of staffing and it is only a matter of time before one or more of them has to close. “The Welsh Government will be receiving hundreds of millions of pounds from the UK Government as a result of the increase in National Insurance and it is imperative that money is used wisely to address the chronic underfunding that is the root cause of low pay in the sector. “Social care is now at a crossroads and it is vitally important that the Welsh Government plot the correct path to ensure these major issues are addressed as a matter of urgency.”


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New Insights into the Advance Prescribing of Injectable Medications at the End of Life The advance prescribing of injectable medications is recommended for patients approaching the end of life at home in the UK and elsewhere. But prescriptions vary in frequency depending on which GP practice patients are registered with and what conditions they have, report researchers from the University of Cambridge. The medications, which usually include opioids, can be prescribed weeks to months before death. They are prescribed in advance so visiting health professionals can administer them if the patient needs them to ease symptoms like pain and agitation in the last days of life. The researchers, led by Ben Bowers at the Primary Care Unit, University of Cambridge, looked at the GP records and community nurse records of 329 deceased patients registered with 11 GP practices. The patients received end-of-life care at home or in their care home between 2017 and 2019, and died from predictable causes like heart failure, cancer and pneumonia. The records revealed that half the patients in the study were prescribed anticipatory medications, often in the form of standardised drugs and doses for the five most common symptoms that frequently occur towards the end of life: pain, breathlessness, nausea and vomiting, agitation or respiratory secretions. Statistical analysis of the data in the clinical records of the 329 patients showed big variations in prescribing rates, depending on the GP practice they were registered with, as well as the condition they had. GP practice rates varied from 23% of patients receiving advance prescriptions in one of the practices to 93% in another. The median rate across

the 11 practices was 47%. Nearly 70% of patients with cancer were given advance prescriptions, compared with 39% of non-cancer patients. The likelihood of prescribing was significantly higher for patients who had expressed a preferred place of death or had the involvement of a specialist palliative care team. The clinical records showed that the anticipatory medications were frequently recorded as being prescribed as part of a single end of life planning consultation. Often, the prescription (or discussion concerning the prescription) occurred during the same consultation with the patient and their family when preferred place of death and / or cardiopul-

monary resuscitation discussions were first recorded. The timing of prescriptions varied substantially, occurring at a point between 0 and 1212 days before death. Patients who died from cancer were prescribed medications a median of 21.5 days before death; for those who died from non-cancer illnesses, medications were prescribed a median of 12 days before death. But seven patients in the study were prescribed anticipatory medications a year or more before death, of which six had a non-cancer diagnosis. Our study is the first to highlight the high frequency and standardised prescribing of anticipatory medication prescriptions for terminally ill patients in a primary care population. The range of timing of prescribing, at times many months before death, emphasises that it is difficult to predict the timing of death. Our findings also highlight the risks involved in putting medication in place too far in advance of possible need. The presence of anticipatory medications for long periods of time, or when situations are uncertain, may compromise patient safety unless robust systems are in place to review their continued appropriateness and safe use.” – Ben Bowers, lead author, Palliative and End of Life Care Group at the Primary Care Unit The researchers were funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) School for Primary Care Research and the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration East of England (ARC EoE) programme, with a contribution from the RCN Foundation Professional Bursary Scheme.

Four in Five People Aged 16 and Over Vaccinated with Both Doses Four in five people aged 16 and over in the UK have received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, the latest figures show. A total of 43,535,098 people have received two doses (80.1%) and 48,292,811 people have received one dose (88.8%). More than half of all teenagers aged 16 to 17 in England have already received their first jab, just over four weeks after the green light was given for this age group to be offered the vaccine. To further drive vaccine uptake among younger adults and children eligible for the jab, a new campaign has launched this week across social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, as well as on radio stations including Kiss, Capital, Heart,Absolute and LBC (radio adverts begin from 11thSeptember). The campaign will have two strands – one aimed at parents and another for under 18s. Parents will be reassured the vaccine keeps everyone safe, protects families and helps keep teenagers’ ‘life on track’. The message for 16 and 17 year olds is ‘don’t miss out on half terms plans, good times, and the COVID jab’. Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “It is a phenomenal achievement that four in five adults across the UK have now received both COVID-19 vaccines, which have built a wall of defence around the UK and are allowing us to live safely with this virus. “It is fantastic to see so many leading companies doing everything they can to help encourage young people to get the jab – from Tik Tok to MTV, as well as other household names who have already rallied behind the rollout like Uber. “Getting your vaccine has never been easier, and I urge everyone to continue to play their part by getting the jab to protect themselves, their families and their communities.” The latest data from Public Health England and Cambridge University

shows vaccines have saved more than 105,000 lives and prevented 143,600 hospitalisations and 24 million cases in England. TikTok’s support for the vaccine rollout includes adding the NHS ‘I’ve had my COVID vaccine’ stickers to its library for users to share, and working with Team Halo – a group of scientists using the platform - to provide the latest information on vaccines with entertaining and shareable videos. MTV has added its weight to the vaccine campaign, with Club MTV, in collaboration with the NHS, throwing an exclusive gig on September 15, with headliners Rudimental and Young T and Bugsey, for people aged 18 to 30 who’ve had their vaccination. Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “It is extremely encouraging to see the enthusiasm young people have shown in getting their life-saving vaccinations, and we want that to continue. “We’re continuing to improve access and encourage uptake – with popup centres appearing in places of worship, music venues and sporting grounds – and continued support from major names such as Tik-Tok is fantastic to see. “Everyone eligible should not delay in getting their jab 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 at locations such as G-A-Y nightclub in London, the Hindu Temple in Crawley and the University of Kent’s Canterbury Campus last weekend. Data from Public Health England shows COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective against hospitalisation from the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant, the dominant strain in the UK. The analysis shows the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is 96% effective and the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is 92% effective against hospitalisation after 2 doses.

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

trum with non-intrusive safety aggregates in the vinyl to create a safe yet attractive interior in commercial or residential areas. Said Matt Timmins, regional manager for Designer Contracts’ West Midlands office, which supplied and fitted the flooring: “To undertake such a project during a national lockdown presented additional challenges for the team but we approached the project with flexibility and a positive mindset. “The scale of the work meant large communal corridors were unavailable to residents while the levelling compound was setting, so it was important that frequent updates were shared with all stakeholders, including the clinical staff who oversaw the residents’ needs.” Ed Pajak, sales manager for Designer Contracts added: “I’m really proud of the team and the way everyone rose to the challenge presented by the client. At the time, the Easter bank holiday was just days off from the start of the project and COVID restrictions were due to ease. We had just a couple of days to complete the communal lounge so residents could finally welcome family and loved ones back into the building.” Following the success of the Dorothy Terry House project, the Rooftop Housing Group has now instructed Designer Contracts to prepare quotes for a further seven similar sized projects in Worcestershire. Designer Contracts is based in Chesterfield, Derbyshire and operates across 15 UK regional facilities. Call 01246 854577 or visit www.DesignerContracts.com for further information.


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 19

Health Charities Urge “Rethink” On Plan To Raise Prescription Qualifying Age Health charities, the Royal College of General Practitioners, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and the British Geriatrics Society have joined together to issue an open letter, urging the Government to rethink its proposal to raise the qualifying age for free prescriptions in England from 60 to 66. The letter highlights their ‘deep shared concern’ that scrapping free prescription charges for 60–65 year-olds is likely to intensify existing health inequalities and have a devastating impact on some older people’s health. With many older people already struggling to meet basic living costs, this additional levy on poor health could prevent them from managing their health conditions, especially if they are on a modest income but still above the benefits line. The letter continues by highlighting how the Government’s proposal will have a lasting adverse impact on the half (52%) of 60-64yr olds with one or more long term conditions. While some patients will find the change affordable, significant numbers will not. The DHSC impact analysis highlights that these patients will find it harder to proactively manage their conditions, presenting in their local health service as their conditions deteriorate. New analysis by Age UK reveals that each year, tens of thousands of people may require hospital treatment (1), having cut back on their medication due to no longer being eligible for free prescriptions The DHSC itself has estimated savings of £198-£257m p.a. for the NHS as a whole, which is a tiny fraction of the NHS £212.1bn budget (2) What’s more, this estimate does not take into account the extra costs to local health services from addressing the more complex issues that will arise for the patients who feel unable to afford their medication. These

patients are more likely to live in more deprived communities, with services that are more overstretched and under-resourced than in more affluent areas. There are no specific measures in place to direct the money saved by this proposal to less favoured localities, and the change seriously risks widening health inequalities at a time when the Government and the NHS are committed to narrowing them. Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, said: “The money the Government raises if it goes ahead with this proposal will be easily outweighed by the additional costs to the NHS if, as is predictable, some people fail to take their medication and become sicker, more quickly. Tens of thousands may require hospital treatment due to rationing what they take, so this really is a bad idea that will hit people who are poorly and on modest incomes hardest of all. “Once we reach our early to mid-sixties many of us are advised by our doctors to take medicines that are proven to keep potentially serious health conditions safely under control. If the Government goes ahead with its proposal, it is clear that some people will be reluctant to act on symptoms or get a diagnosis, for fear they will be unable to afford long term, symptom relieving or even in some cases lifesaving medication. The Government should definitely think again.” Professor Martin Marshall, Chair of Council of Royal College of General Practitioners, said: “We have always been supportive of any safe and sensible measures to reduce medication costs for patients and ensure equitable access to necessary medication for all patients. “Introducing an additional cost for over 60s managing long term health conditions will, albeit unintentionally, disproportionately affect a large group of patients who are on low incomes but just above the

threshold for financial help with the costs of their medication. Many patients are already waiting longer for treatment or will have seen their health deteriorate as a result of the challenges of the last 18 months. This change will discourage patients who are financially less well-off from managing their health proactively, and could mean that they present to general practice when their problems are far worse and at a time when general practice is already at breaking point. We urge government to reconsider these proposals.” Thorrun Govind, Royal Pharmaceutical Society English Pharmacy Board Chair, said: “The proposal to raise the age at which people can access free prescriptions from 60 to 66 means that many more people will be affected by this tax on the sick at exactly the time at which they may be needing more medicines. “It is unacceptable to raise the cost of prescriptions in the current economic situation when many have been disadvantaged by the pandemic. Such proposals will only further drive the health inequalities that have been highlighted by Covid-19. “RPS would like to see the complete abolishment of prescription charges in England, whatever the age group, as is the case in Scotland and Wales.” Dr Jennifer Burns, President, British Geriatrics Society said: “We are dismayed to hear that the Government is considering increasing the age at which people in England become eligible for free prescriptions. It is essential that older people with multiple long-term conditions are able to access to the medications they need to effectively manage their health.”

Hallmark Care Homes Achieves Planning Approval For Care Home In Bromley Care provider Hallmark Care Homes has been granted planning consent to transform St Raphael’s care home in Bromley into a new state-of-the-art care home. Award-winning care home construction specialist, Savista Developments will redevelop the existing disused care home into a larger 107-bed, specialist dementia home for residents with a range of care needs. Designed to Hallmark’s outstanding standards, the £30m scheme will provide extensive facilities including a cinema, café/bistro, shop, hair salon, gym, spa, ten pin bowling alley, hobby rooms and library. High-quality gardens will include a residents’ garden club area. Aneurin Brown, Group Operations Director of Hallmark Care Homes said: We are delighted to have secured planning permission for this wonderful facility that will be an asset to the community and local residents. The home

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will have a number of innovative ideas and new features that we are looking to showcase when it opens in 2023.” Kevin Shaw, CEO of Savista, said: “The new care home in Bromley represents a new phase of expansion for Savista. We are very pleased to help meet the growing demand for specialist care in the area. The development will provide an exceptional, high-quality place for local people to live; we’ll deliver much-needed care beds to this community as well as modern, communal spaces and specialist facilities. “Alongside the Bromley scheme, we have a number of exciting projects in the pipeline and are seeking new land opportunities. We look forward to working with our partners and stakeholders to expand on our delivery of care homes and retirement living developments across the UK.”


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Alzheimer’s Month: Delivering Outstanding Dementia Care People living with dementia generally need more support from care providers than those without. It’s therefore extremely important that care home operators understand how to provide outstanding care for residents living with dementia. This Alzheimer’s Month (September 2021) Theresa McNally, Creative Practice Manager at CQC Outstanding rated dementia care specialist Vida Healthcare, shares her top tips for providing an outstanding level of care. What is outstanding care? Outstanding care is about self-awareness, training and education, and challenging ourselves to try and empathise with care home residents living with dementia. If we understand how they feel, it’s easier to deliver the level of care and compassion they require. Outstanding care relies on a number of factors. A well designed care home, flexible care, and passionate, committed, and compassionate staff who really value the health and wellbeing of the people they care for. Adaptability and the ability to reflect on the needs of individuals is crucial to ensure outstanding care is provided. This will enable care which is person-centred and flexes to the needs of each resident, no matter the level of care they require or where they are on their dementia journey. Outstanding care is all about delivering care in a sympathetic and effective way, which makes it easier for staff to connect with residents. Insight and understanding into the experiences of care home residents is crucial, including up-to-date learning and an understanding of any symptoms and experiences. Building an outstanding care home Care home design is crucial in ensuring residents are happy, healthy and have a good quality of life. When designing and building a home, consider the needs of the people who will be living there during the design process, rather than just the building as a whole. This will ensure the right care can be given to the right people at the right time, as good design can impact people’s lives in a number of positive ways. Care homes which feel like a home and offer a level of service beyond traditional care are much more like-

ly to deliver outstanding care. A range of facilities can also create a feeling of homeliness, which gives residents different destinations and activities to keep them busy and occupied. This can include cinemas, hairdressers, and coffee shops. This will also provide a level of continued normalcy which is vital, particularly when an individual has just moved to a care home or is living with dementia. Staff are crucial Providing opportunities for career development is very important, and encourages staff to consider social care as a career rather than just a job. This also drives passion when it comes to caring for society’s most vulnerable people, and ensures staff are committed to delivering best practice and learning new skills. Investment in career opportunities will inspire more people to become interested in a role within social care, and make current carers feel supported in their ambitions. Showing compassion and interest in the personal development of employees will create a positive workplace culture and working environment which retains existing staff and attracts new talent. While investment in career development and opportunities is important, the mental health of carers is also vitally important. Investment in mental health initiatives will ensure the health and wellbeing of staff is easier to maintain, give staff more time to interact with the people they care for on a personal level, and reduce pressures. Consider that if the workforce isn’t managed and looked after, how can they provide outstanding care to residents? Coronavirus and the changes that have followed have meant that providing outstanding care in care homes has become increasingly challenging, particularly for people living with dementia. Care home operators can work together to develop a culture of learning amongst staff, greater understanding of the role of the care home environment, and how to deliver outstanding care. For more information on outstanding care available for people living with dementia, please visit www.vidahealthcare.co.uk.

Cumbernauld Local Recognised In Housing Providers Kindness Awards A DEDICATED member of staff at a housing development in Cumbernauld has been acknowledged for keeping spirits high during the pandemic. Carole Irvine, 61 from Cumbernauld, has been recognised in the ‘You are One of a Kind’ award by Bield Housing and Care after going out of her way to lift spirits during lockdown. Working for the housing provider for 13 years as a scheme assistant, Carole supports staff and customers at Campsie Gardens in Cumbernauld. Scheme Assistant, Carole said: “During the pandemic I became a bit of a messenger, delivering packages to customers who were shielding. I knew I was probably the only friendly face some individuals were seeing on a daily basis so I went out of my way to make them smile and have a chat in keeping with the guidance. “I’m delighted to be receiving this award and really did not expect it. I love interacting with customers and making them laugh it is just in my nature so it’s nice to hear people appreciate it!”. Carole goes out of her way to create a fun, caring and supportive environment for customers and staff alike.

She added: “Everywhere I go, I sing – not very well – but I enjoy it. I play music in the lounge and will ask the customers what they want to listen to. Frank Ilfield will often play at lunch time.” The Bield ‘You are One of a Kind’ award is a new initiative to thank the local community, customers, and staff with a key opportunity to nominate their choice of local star. The winner is chosen at the end of each month through a selection of judges who pick the respective winner and provides them with the one of a Kind award and a £50 voucher. Margaret McCallum, Development Manager at Bield’s Campsie Gardens, said: “Carole is a very support member of the development team. Staff and customers both appreciate all the work she does outwith her daily duties. “Throughout the pandemic, Carole was caring and compassionate when others were feeling anxious – it made such a difference to have her here. “What both customers and staff love about Carole is her go to attitude of nothing is impossible. I am proud to have Carole on my team.”

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

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


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New Body To Tackle Health Disparities Will Launch 1 October, Co-Headed By New DCMO The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID) will officially launch on 1 October with the aim of tackling health inequalities across the country. It will be co-led by newly appointed Deputy Chief Medical Officer (DCMO), Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy. The OHID will be a vital part of the Department of Health and Social Care and will drive the prevention agenda across government to reduce health disparities, many of which have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and improve the public’s health. Health disparities across the UK are stark – for example, a woman living in Blackpool will on average live 16 fewer years in good health than a woman born in Brent, London and we know someone’s ethnicity can have a significant bearing on their health and health outcomes. Health disparities can undermine people’s ability to work and live long healthy independent lives while creating pressure on the NHS, social care and other public services. Ill-health amongst working-age people alone costs the economy around £100 billion a year and it’s estimated that 40% of health care provision in the UK is being used to manage potentially preventable conditions. The new body will tackle the top preventable risk factors for poor health, including obesity caused by unhealthy diets and lack of physical activity, smoking and alcohol consumption. It will work across the health system to drive forward action on health disparities, including improving access to health services across the country, and coordinate with government departments to address the wider drivers of good health, from employment to housing, education and the environment. As the new DCMO for Health Improvement, Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy will advise government on clinical and

public health matters as the co-lead for OHID, alongside the DHSC Director General for the OHID, Jonathan Marron. They will be under the professional leadership of the Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty. Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the disparities that exist within our country. We know the virus has had a greater impact on those with poorer health and we must ensure we give people the tools they need to maintain a healthy lifestyle, whilst relieving pressures on our NHS. “By focussing on preventing and not just treating poor health, the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities will tackle health disparities to break the link between people’s background and their prospects for a healthy life. “I look forward to Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy coming on board to co-lead the OHID, bringing her extensive knowledge to deliver a meaningful reduction in health disparities for people up and down the country.” Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy, incoming Deputy Chief Medical Officer said: “The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities will play a critical role in reducing health inequalities across the country and build on the important work undertaken over recent years. “COVID has exposed and exacerbated the health inequalities across the UK. It is critical we address these head-on and support people to live healthier lives. I look forward to getting started.” Professor Chris Whitty, Chief Medical Officer said: “Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy brings extensive local, regional and national experience to the role. “The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities has a lot of important and challenging work to do and Dr de Gruchy is well placed to ensure it delivers meaningful health improvements for people nationwide.” The Office will help inform a new cross-government agenda which will look to track the wider determinants of health and reduce disparities. The OHID will bring expert advice, data and evidence together with policy development and implementation to ensure action on improving health is better informed, more effective and more joined-up. It will bring together a range of skills to lead a new era of public health polices, leveraging modern digital tools, data and actuarial science and delivery experts.

Care South Awards Caring Canines with £2,400 Chairman’s 2020 Fund Award Care South has awarded local not-for-profit group, Caring Canines, with a £2,400 Chairman’s 2020 Fund award. The Fund has been established with the aim of benefiting Care South employees, volunteers and community groups who provide a community service to care homes, care at home offices, clients or residents. Its purpose is in “Supporting Care South’s Friends”. Caring Canines offers the assistance of its assessed, vaccinated and insured dogs in the Bournemouth and Poole community to break down barriers and enhance the lives of those people who miss canine companionship or benefit from it. Interacting with a friendly pet is known to help residents, and Care South’s care homes have recently been welcoming the friendly pooches into their homes for many calming cuddles. The cheque presentation took place at Care South’s Fairlawn home in Ferndown where Jane Stichbury, Care South’s Chairman and Simon Bird, Chief Executive Offer, were joined by members of the Caring

Canines’ team and some cuddly companions, including an eightmonth trained puppy with L plates attached. Simon Bird, Care South’s Chief Executive, commented: “We are delighted to be able to support Caring Canines and the work that they do. We have worked closely together for some time now and the award made from the Chairman’s 2020 Fund is a further way of supporting our very good friends at Caring Canines.” Sue Dennett, Co-Founder of Caring Canines, added, “We are thrilled and honoured to receive this esteemed award and want to thank Simon for nominating Caring Canines and to Jane for agreeing and awarding the not-for-profit group with this incredible sum of money. Our partnership with the care homes is prospering, which is fantastic to be part of. Our team thoroughly enjoy their visits to all the care homes, especially the dogs who receive lots of attention from all the residents.”

Celebrate Silver Sunday – The National Day For Older People A very special day in the calendar, hundreds of care homes and organisations will be celebrating older people on Sunday 3rd October Held annually on the first Sunday in October, Silver Sunday is the national day for older people. Started as a response to social isolation and loneliness among our older population and now in its tenth year, it is a special day in the national calendar, when everyone can come together to put older people at the heart of their community. This year it takes place on (and around) Sunday 3 October 2021. Last year, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, an enthusiastic supporter, said: “As a member of Silver Sunday’s target audience, I can honestly say that it is a completely brilliant initiative!” Since it first began in 2012, hundreds of care providers across the country have put on tea parties, craft activities, virtual sing-a-longs, yoga classes, poetry readings and much more in support of the big day. Part of the biggest celebration of older people in the country, these events bring huge amounts of joy to residents. They are also an opportunity to showcase what care homes offer and welcome their local communities to see the work care home staff do every day supporting older people. “We are always thrilled with the way care homes bring Silver Sunday to life. The imagination and care that

goes in to creating such lovely events is wonderful to see. During this dreadful pandemic, care homes in particular have had such a horrendous time. They desperately need something happy and uplifting to look forward to. We therefore strongly encourage as many care homes as possible to get involved and if possible welcome in their local communities. The residents will love it and it is such fun for everyone taking part.” – Christabel Flight, Silver Sunday Founder The team behind Silver Sunday are encouraging care homes across the UK to be a part of this national initiative. Silver Sunday is an opportunity to build lasting relationships with their local communities. This could include civic leaders, MPs, charities, entertainers and performers, schools, and youth organisations such as Scouts (who have their own Silver Sunday badge) and Guiding groups.


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Extra Funding is a “Once-in-aGeneration” Chance to Fix “Broken” Social Care System A social care leader is warning that a number of care homes in Wales will close unless an extra £250 million in funding is used to fix the “broken” system and tackle low pay in the sector. Mr Mario Kreft MBE, the chair of Care Forum Wales, was speaking after the announcement by Prime Minister Boris Johnson that he is raising national insurance by 1.25 per cent to end the “catastrophic costs” of social care. The hike will also help fund a major drive in England to clear the massive backlog in operations and treatment caused by Covid-19. As national insurance is a UK-wide tax, it’s estimated that Wales will receive between £250 million and £300 million in additional funding. It will be up to the Welsh Government how they spend it. According to Mr Kreft, it is a “once-in-a-generation” opportunity to fix the “broken” social care system in Wales. First Minister Mark Drakeford had admitted before the pandemic that the sector was fragile and the finances had become even more precarious since the pandemic struck. Among the main threats to care homes and domiciliary care companies were decades of chronic underfunding and a dire shortage of staff. Pay levels were dictated by the formulas used by local authorities and health boards to calculate the fees they paid to social care providers. Mr Kreft said: “Coming up with a way to properly fund social care has been the challenge of our age. “The quest for an effective and integrated health and social care system has been going on for 30 years. “What we have now is an opportunity to sort out social care which is incredibly important for so many reasons, including the fact that it underpins the NHS. “Obviously, there will be additional money coming to Wales, presumably through the Barnett formula, but there is no reason for us to do the things that we have always done. “What we’ve seen in the pandemic is the Welsh Government taking a leadership role and looking at a much more centralised approach. “As a result the funding and the support for social care during the

pandemic has decided more centrally rather than through the 22 local authorities. That is a very good example of how we could do things more effectively in future. “At the moment, the sector is blighted by a postcode lottery of different fees paid by different councils and health boards. What we need is a level playing field with a national approach which is what the Welsh Government achieved with their Covid support for social care. “Fundamentally, we have an issue with the recruitment and retention of social care staff and this is something that needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency. “As well has hanging on to our existing workforce, we need to be able to attract a new generation of social care workers. “We have to change perceptions so that it is rightly seen as a profession to be proud of. “It wasn’t that many months ago that we were clapping our social care workers. “Today they are leaving the sector in droves so we have got to do something to stem that tide.

“In relation to funding, we need to look at social care as a value to society not a cost. It is something that enhances communities across Wales and provides succour and support for the most vulnerable people in our society. “Social care is also a fundamental part of the foundation economy here in Wales so we can be clever about this and ensure we have a system that works well for our communities and can at the same time help the NHS function. “We’re seeing real issues in our hospitals with people being unable to be discharged back to their own homes. “One of the major problems is that we do not have the capacity in terms of the numbers of social care workers that we need. “I welcome this funding because we have had 30 years of shirking this very important issue – now is the time to settle down and get the job done. “The problems with pay in the sector in Wales are caused by those who commission social care, the local authorities and the health boards. “The responsibility rests squarely with them because each of the commissioned places is given a number of allotted hours. “In North Wales, for example, the toolkit they use assumes half the hours are paid at the legal minimum wages. and half of those hours are paid at the National Living Wage. “The system is broken and it needs to change. Care Forum Wales will be trying to make this work with an effective, integrated health and social care system. “Last year Care Forum Wales launched our 2020 campaign to ensure that people working in social care were paid at least £20,000 a year. This is a golden opportunity to make sure this happens. “We need to ensure that working in social care is a profession to be proud of and to do that we need to be able to pay staff what they deserve and the providers are able to be viable. “I that doesn’t happen the sector will come crashing down like a house of cards and providers across Wales will be forced to close their doors.”

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RCP COVID-19 Study Provides Insight Into Pandemic Hospital Care The Royal College of Physicians has conducted the largest study to date of the quality of care given to patients in the UK with COVID-19 to identify learnings from the pandemic. This study recruited a sample and demographic representative of English hospitals’ experience of the COVID-19 pandemic. The study gathered information about the quality of care delivered from 19 organisations in England which between them accounted for a population of almost 10.5 million people exposed to the COVID-19 virus. These organisations collectively looked after over 26,000 cases of COVID-19 in 2020 with over 6,000 patients dying with the condition in their care. They reviewed 510 patients and their care. Using a modified version of an established and validated structured judgement review process already used by many clinicians in the retrospective case record analysis of acute hospital deaths, the study concluded that overall care delivered was judged to have been adequate, good or excellent for 96.5% of patients (good or excellent for 77.4%). Care judged to be poor overall was very uncommon and occurred in only 3.5% of the total sample. When it did occur, it was related to end-of-life care issues, nosocomial infections (those acquired in hospital), delays in assessment and the two linked issues of poor communication and poor documentation. The study looked at significant variations between hospitals when it came to end of life care experiences, assessment, documentation and communication, senior review, do not attempt resuscitation decisions and discharge planning. This revealed both excellent care and care that could have been improved. In a report based on its findings, Caring for Hospital Patients with COVID-19: Quality of Care in England Examined by Case Record Review, the RCP recommends that: • Hospitals and teams that have delivered excellent care during the pandemic should analyse the factors that enabled them to do so and publish key findings to support more consistent quality of care across the NHS. • Professionals and organisations should strive to reduce variation in care in key areas including: • End of life care in hospital

• Early assessment • Documentation and communication • Senior review and decision making • Treatment escalation planning, conversations and documentation • Discharge planning • For those with learning disabilities • Particular attention should be paid to quality of care, decision making, communication and documentation required for vulnerable people, including those with learning disabilities. • Further analysis should be carried out of the variation in the number of deaths from COVID-19 between different parts of the country.

Dr John Dean, the RCP’s clinical director for quality improvement and patient safety, said: “My colleagues in the NHS have been faced with unprecedented challenges during the pandemic but RCP’s study shows how almost all care provided has been of the right standard. We can, however, learn from excellent care, and variations in care, just as we can learn from poor care, and I am sure that this study will prove invaluable as we seek to learn from this extraordinary time.” Dr Susie Orme, consultant in care of the elderly and associate medical director (mortality) at Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, which took part in the study, said: “At the start of the first wave of COVID-19 before we had the knowledge and the treatments we now have and when at times, the only available treatment was to care, we continued to care well. This report highlights how healthcare organisations maintained the high standards of patient care we would expect in non-pandemic times. The report highlights positive practice and learning which we will continue to implement.” Dr Emma Redfern, consultant in emergency medicine, University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW), which also took part, said: “UHBW were delighted to participate in this unique study. Our patients were able to benefit from many of the local system changes that had been introduced prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly the standardisation of NEWS2 scoring and ReSPECT advanced care planning processes. We are committed to continual learning and will endeavour to do so in light of the findings of this report.”

Waffle The Cavapoo Visit’s Residents At Local Care Home For International Dog Day Barchester Magnolia Court care community, in Golders Green, was full of animal mischief when Waffle the Cavapoo came to visit the home for International Dog day. Residents and staff were delighted to meet their new four legged friend. General Manager Octavian Stanciu said: “Our residents have really enjoyed their furry visitor today. We knew that having Waffle here for International Dog Day would be a bit of fun for all our residents, especially as some find it a little difficult getting out and about. We are always looking for different activities for the residents and we have seen the seen the enjoyment and the therapeutic influence animals can have on people and we would like to thanks Waffle and Sarah for spending time

with us today.” Resident Bill was very excited to meet Waffle: “As a child we had a Alsatian called honey. I have so many wonderful memories of our lovely dog. I love animals. Today was very enjoyable and it was wonderful that Waffle and her trusty assistant Sarah came to see us.” Resident Sally said “Waffle is a great little character, she gave a great furry cuddle and we can’t wait to see her again. I have very fond memories of visiting my grandma’s Yorkshire poodle Sammy boy. Seeing Waffle today has bought back all those lovely memories”

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

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

Residents at Care Village Donate Support for Afghan Refugees Kind-hearted residents at a Didsbury-based care village founded by a Jewish First World War refugee are lending a helping hand to refugees by donating aid to those arriving in the UK. Moved by the plight of those fleeing Afghanistan as the Taliban retakes control of the war-torn country, members of the Belong Morris Feinmann community have donated 70 toiletry bags, accompanied by messages of personal support. The donation efforts are being led by Care4Calais, a volunteer-run charity, working with refugees in the UK, as well as France and Belgium. The UK government has pledged to welcome around 20,000 people through a resettlement scheme. Belong Morris Feinmann residents and colleagues have also extended their generosity by donating much-needed clothing and footwear to Afghans in need, in another effort being led by Bowdon Shul, South Manchester Synagogue, for which the village has an extensive relationship.

Angela Luckett, experience coordinator at Belong Morris Feinmann, is coordinating the village’s contributions. She said: “Our village’s foundations lie in the support of refugees, originally set-up to help Jews fleeing persecution in Europe, and so, as soon as we heard about the awful situation in Afghanistan, we felt compelled to do something to help.” Morris Feinmann, a Jewish refugee who had fled Eastern Europe in WWI, dedicated his life to supporting Jews fleeing Nazi persecution in the Second World War, including founding a guarantee scheme to enable German Jews to escape from the country and settle in Manchester. His groundwork eventually led to the Manchester Jewish Refugee Committee purchasing a house for those in need. Angela Luckett continues: “For many of our residents, seeing the news in Asia has been deeply moving – some are refugees themselves and so their contributions are all the more personal. Community and supporting others are key to Belong’s ethos and we’re pleased to be fortunate enough to be in a position to help those who need it most.”


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Delaying Reforms Will Only Hold NHS Back From Addressing Challenges Responding to the Centre for Policy Studies’ report ‘Is Manchester Greater?’, Louise Patten of the NHS Confederation, which represents Integrated Care Systems, said: “NHS leaders support the move to greater integration of local health and care services in England through the creation of integrated care systems. The NHS Bill going through Parliament is merely catching up with collaboration of local services that have been taking place for several years. NHS leaders want this and believe the changes will improve care for patients and deliver more value for money for taxpayers. Any delays to the Bill will set back months of progress and, ultimately, harm patients. “Putting local integrated care systems onto the statute book is an important next step, but this is a long-term ambition and NHS and care leaders know there is more progress to be made and that this takes time. There are many examples up and down the country of how health and social care organisations are working in partnership to deliver measurably better care for the public. We need to continue this progress and empower local leaders to tailor services to their local communities. The Government’s reforms are an important next step.

“This report from the Centre for Policy Studies seeks to measure success or failure of integrated care systems by how quickly patients are kept waiting in hospital when they are medically fit to leave and go back home, into a residential home or into another care setting. Ignoring the fact that many local integrated care systems have improved their performance on this measure, the wider ambitions of local systems is to move from the traditional hospital- based care and support patients with multiple long-term conditions through the collaboration of groups of providers. By focussing on joining up local services, systems can improve the health of their local communities and tackle long-standing inequalities that result in poorer and deprived communities experiencing worse outcomes and often dying younger. Moving to pro-active care models will ultimately protect hospitals from extra demand. “Finally, the report ignores the wider context at play here. We now have more people needing care, often with more severe needs, and the decade of austerity we experienced in the 2010s left the NHS short of the funding it needed. As we edge closer to the Government’s spending review, we need a new settlement for the NHS and social care that enables local health and care services to respond to the rapidly rising demand that we are seeing and to deal with what is the most significant backlog of care we have seen in a generation. Delaying much needed reforms that will remove legislative barriers to integrating local health and care services will only serve to hold the NHS back from addressing these challenges.”

Bognor Regis Care Home Resident Enjoys Special Visit From Local Fire Brigade Patrick O’Hanlon, a 62-year-old resident living at MHA Greenways care home in Bognor Regis, recently enjoyed a trip inside a fire engine for the first time since he served as a firefighter 30 years ago. Staff working at the care home asked Patrick what one ambition he would like to fulfil as part of MHA’s ‘Seize the Day’ scheme, which helps residents’ visions come to life. Patrick said he’d like to experience sitting inside a fire engine again – having left his role in the fire and rescue service due to Alzheimer’s. Joanne Mitchell, the care home’s activities coordinator, quickly got to work and contacted the local fire and rescue station to arrange for a visit to take place. The fire station manager also had a personal interest in the request, as he was part of Patrick’s crew. On Thursday 26th August, the fire station team – along with more of Patrick’s former crew mates, some of whom are now retired – drove down to the home in one of their fire engines. Patrick was also greeted outside by his three children Sam, Alice and Megan, as well as his brother Bob and sister-in-law Lesley, who he had not seen in almost two years due to the pandemic. Of the day itself, Patrick said: “It was wonderful to see my children and brother and my friends”

Joanne Mitchell, activities coordinator, said: “It was so lovely to see Patrick enjoying his Seize The Day moment with his family and ex colleagues. He was delighted when the fire engine arrived and relived the experience when he sat inside. There was lots of laughter and tears of joy, this moment touched all our hearts.” Born in Belfast, Patrick is the eldest of three children. His family left Northern Ireland in the early 70s due to the troubles, staying with their uncle and aunt in Chester, before later moving to West Kirby, near Liverpool. Patrick joined the RAF in 1977, where he helped to refuel helicopters. He travelled with the RAF to Belize, Ascension Island, Hong Kong and did tours of Northern Ireland. He left the RAF after 9 years and joined the fire service, where he reached the rank of leading firefighter and watch commander. He served across West Sussex – in Horsham, Bognor Regis and Chichester. In his role, Patrick also taught new recruits how to use breathing apparatus and carry out emergency life support techniques. Seize the Day was created by MHA, a national charity which provides care, accommodation and community-based support, with the vision of helping people to live later life well. Residents are asked what one thing they would love to achieve, and the initiative then helps that dream come to life.

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

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


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Dying From Old Age? You’re Supposed To. Concerned About The Care You Might Receive? You Should Be. Dying with frailty doesn’t have to look like this. Ageism and the inequality of service provision can and should be questioned, and now is the time to act. At St Christopher’s, we are committed to improving understanding and encouraging action in end of life care, and reminding people of the value of dying the way you choose – as everyone deserves to – despite the additional vulnerabilities that frailty and old age bring. Contrary to popular belief, frailty is a measure of a person’s resilience and ability to recover from health concerns, not necessarily a primary diagnosis in itself. Misunderstandings around frailty can lead to people being unable to access the support they need, and sadly, ageism is sometimes present across multiple provisions of care. The common language surrounding frailty and end of life care is often underpinned with dismissiveness and negativity, whilst a ‘one size fits all’ approach to the development of services leaves no room for individual priorities. This in turn leaves many families and unpaid carers confused and distressed by the services currently offered, which leave little room for the personal wishes and preferences of those who need support. We want to challenge this. We believe that by taking responsibility for gaps in language, knowledge, and service provision, we can redress current inequalities and start again: by building a care system that is designed by and for people experiencing frailty, and by listening to and advocating for people

whose voices become increasingly unheard as they grow older and get forgotten. On Thursday 14 October 2021, we will be hosting a one-day conference on frailty in our brand-new Centre for Awareness and Response to End of Life (St Christopher’s CARE), where we will be joined by CEO of British Geriatrics Society, Sarah Mistry, acclaimed Geriatrician and

author, Dr Lucy Pollock, author and former Guardian columnist, Madeline Bunting, and current AGE UK Director, Caroline Abrahams. The conference will be delivered through a blend of provocations from industry experts, leading to round table discussions, exhibitions and interactive lived experience sessions. Attendees will be able to listen to and take part in conversations with experts in their field, and learn more about what frailty is and how it impacts people living and dying with it. Participants will also have a unique chance to learn more about the significant challenges facing wider society, which impact our health and social care provision and reduce opportunities for people to live and die well. We believe that problems which may seem huge and intangible right now can be solved, and that we can all interrogate the status quo and contribute to new ways of thinking relating to ageing and end of life care. We also hope to gather all our voices together and release our findings and recommendations in a report later down the line. Frailty is everybody’s business, and we will all die one day. Will you act now, before it’s too late? Buy your tickets now at www.stchristophers.org.uk/frailtyconference and pay a discounted rate of just £99 before 14 September. We are also offering student, carer, unemployed and/or OAP tickets at £75 per person.

Joy For Wedding Guest Frank, 93, On 300Mile Round Trip From Dementia Care Home A dedicated companion at a Dorset dementia care home brought joy to a 93-year-old resident by taking him on a 300mile round trip so he could attend his granddaughter’s wedding. Frank Campbell made the journey from Colten Care’s Outstanding-rated Ferndown home, Fernhill, to the Bedfordshire village of Felmersham, and back, accompanied by Companionship team member Ann Marie Knight. Frank’s family had expressed a heartfelt wish that he could be there in person when his granddaughter Jessica got married but knew the distance, coupled with his age and health needs, would make it a challenge. They asked if any team members at Fernhill would be prepared to escort him to make it possible. Ann Marie said: “I came forward as I knew I would love to do this for Frank and he would be so pleased to attend such a precious family occasion.” After much planning to ensure all would go safely, a taxi ordered by the family arrived at Fernhill to collect Frank and Ann Marie at 8.30am on the wedding day. The road trip took two and a half hours, arriving in good time for the ceremony at Felmersham’s St

Mary’s Church. “When we got to the church, we found we were seated right at the front,” said Ann Marie. “Frank’s comment was ‘how lovely’ and when he saw Jessica, he said how beautiful she looked. She beamed him a big smile when she was at the top of the aisle.” With everyone following Covid-safe guidance, Frank and Jessica were able to take some time together between the ceremony and the start of the reception, held at the 17th century Bedfordshire manor house and events venue Tofte Manor. Ann Marie said: “They had a hug and a brief kiss on the cheek as the guests were gathering in the garden. It was such a beautiful moment. He looked so smart in his suit. Then all his family gathered round to see him and speak with him. His children said it made the whole family’s day to have Frank there, a really special ingredient of the wedding.” After the reception, Frank and Ann Marie made the long return journey to Fernhill in the same taxi, eventually arriving back at 10pm. “He was tired but so pleased to have been a part of such a special day,” Ann Marie said. “The family all made me feel so welcome too. They were so kind and considerate.”

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


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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


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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.

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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.

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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.

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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 68 | PAGE 39

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

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www.nursecallsystems.co.uk


PAGE 40 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

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.

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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 68 | PAGE 41

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

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PAGE 42 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE

How Smart Technology is Simplifying Safety and Security in Care Homes teen years. When I first joined TIS, much of the sector was still very analog in terms of the technology being installed and maintained. But technology will be central to care homes of the future, especially since the industry is experiencing record demand in the number of people needing care, while also struggling to find enough capable staff to fill that demand. This is where technology can shine: By automating previously manual processes care homes can reduce staffing requirements and increase efficiency overall, minimising the amount of time spent on a single task. And I’m excited to see that some care homes are already leading the way. There are some wonderful approaches being taken to care provision that are very different from 'traditional' care home philosophies, driven by residents' wishes and feelings, enabling people to just enjoy life and live in the moment.

IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF LIFE FOR RESIDENTS James Twigg is the Managing Director of Total Integrated Solutions (TIS) - www.tis.co.uk, an independent life safety, security and communication systems integrator, specialising in design & consultancy, technology and regulatory compliance. Smart technology already impacts many aspects of our lives. From how we travel, to how we work, to how we run our homes. It’s not unusual to have Alexa waking us up and ordering our groceries or Nest to be regulating the temperature and energy in our homes. But innovation has not been limited to the daily lives of your average UK citizen. Care homes are modernising too, promoting dignity, improving protection and raising standards. And the result is not only improved quality of life, but also improved safety and security systems for management and operational teams. I’ve been working in the life safety and security industry for over fif-

A move into a care home can be daunting both for the resident and their family. Key concerns we often hear include feeling like a burden, or a loss of independence due to their daily lives being more controlled and monitored. Whilst certain aspects of their lives will be different, owing to the circumstances, smart technology can be used to maintain residents' independence as far as possible through devices such as health monitors and motion sensors which can automatically alert staff to possible problems. Simple, day-to-day tasks that those in need of care struggle with such as opening a curtain or a door can now be handled by voice command technology – reducing the amount of support needed for these more trivial tasks, freeing up time for care staff to focus on more pressing matters in the home.

SIMPLIFYING AND IMPROVING SECURITY SYSTEMS Smart technology gives care staff and security oversight of the needs of residents and guarantees rapid response if notified by an emergency

alert, ensuring they know the exact location of the resident in need. By streamlining daily rounds via technology, staff and management can ensure vital resources are being used effectively, distributing them where they are needed to ensure the safety and wellbeing of those residents who need extra consideration. Additionally, it's no use having traditional analog safety and security systems that only work effectively for 12 hours a day or that need manual processes and paperwork to back them up. Surveillance needs to be 24/7 and smart technology allows that without the physical intrusion into people’s spaces and daily lives. Smart technology ensures that systems speak to each other and are easily and effectively managed on one integrated system.This includes video surveillance which has also become much more effective as a result of advanced video analytics which automatically warn staff of potential issues.

SECURING CARE HOMES AMID COVID-19 The heartbreaking challenges that care homes faced during the pandemic have been well documented. Planning for a COVID-free future, smart technologies such as thermal cameras and mask detection software ensure that care and security teams will be alerted to anyone in the space experiencing a high temperature or not wearing proper PPE. Such steps give staff and families alike peace-of-mind that operational teams will be alerted at the earliest possible moment should a COVID-19 risk appear. Thinking ahead to the next fifteen years, I’m excited at the prospect of further technological advancements in the care home sector. Sophisticated, intelligent, smart technology has the potential to simplify existing, complicated solutions and systems. Technology has the potential to empower care homes to do more; to deliver on their duty of care and ultimately, better focus on the needs of their residents.

Why Now Is The Moment To Embrace Digital Health Technology As Part Of The Care Home System By Axel Nordberg, Essity Global Brand Director (www.essity.com)

“Let us never consider ourselves finished nurses; we must be learning all our lives.” Florence Nightingale As we emerge from the depths of a historic pandemic, the words of Florence Nightingale have never rung truer for carers around the world. From adapting to PPE requirements to abiding by social distancing, Covid-19 has forced all carers to relearn key parts of their trade to keep their residents safe and healthy. Naturally, this has not come without a cost. According to our data at Essity, the pandemic has had a detrimental impact on either the physical health, mental health or emotional wellbeing of more than eight out of ten of the UK carers surveyed. Every carer said their role had changed, with 95% working longer hours to manage urinary incontinence, cleaning and sterilising responsibilities – the highest of any country in Europe. Ultimately, the bravery of our frontline heroes can only endure this emotional and physical toll for so long. In the face of adversity, however, we must look forward. The development of digital health technology – and the appetite to integrate it into care homes – is accelerating at an exceptional rate, and the indus-

try is realising that it is an essential component of a more efficient, higher quality future for care.

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

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

for carers and those needing care alike. However, the UK is currently lagging behind. Only 27% of UK carers said that they have access to sensor technology to support incontinence care, compared to the European average of 32%. Reusable sensors, such as our recently launched TENA SmartCare Change Indicator, can track when a patient needs changing and provide app notifications to their carers, ensuring instant attention and avoiding unnecessary checks. With 71% carers currently struggling with the time required to make frequent checks associated with urinary incontinence, this technology is invaluable to the efficiency of their role.

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


THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68 | PAGE 45

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Virtual Street View Technology Brings Beach To Care Home The day was jam-packed with fun activities such as sandcastle building with buckets, spades and seaside wind toys. To finish off the day, everyone enjoyed a delicious fish and chips dinner, followed by dessert supplied by the local ice cream van ‘Steve’s Whippy’. Residents sat and enjoyed their treat whilst they remarked on how much they benefitted from the interactive fun. Barbara Spafford, resident, told staff “Thank you so much for a lovely day. It was really nice to talk about our past visits to the seaside and tuck into fish and chips for dinner and the best ice cream in Rotherham for pudding.” Sharron Whaley, Home Manager, was touched by how much the residents enjoyed their beach-themed virtual activity. “Everyone had a lovely day at ‘Cherry Trees Beach’ and it was amazing to revisit memories with our residents. The interactive table was a big hit and the device is clearly having a positive impact on resident’s moods and their relationships with care staff, friends and family. We’d like to offer a huge thank you to everyone who contributed to this amazing gift to our home!” she said.

After a challenging year, Cherry Trees Care Home in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, recently decided to put a positive spin on their daily activities schedule and surprise residents with their very own indoor beach day, with the help of their brand new, state-of-the-art, interactive gadget. Thanks to the team’s ongoing commitment to fundraising and the generous donations that they have received from the local community, the home was able to invest in a large flatscreen mobile tablet, which can be used independently or for group activities. The easily adjustable, user-friendly device, provides a variety of fun activities such as quizzes, colouring, virtual concerts, and can also be used to connect residents with their loved ones via virtual communication platforms. After being introduced to their latest gadget, residents reminisced about their childhood days, when they would visit Blackpool with their family, by taking a virtual walk through the streets of the popular holiday destination. The table, which can be easily positioned to suit individual needs, proved to be especially beneficial for residents with dementia as seeing sights from their younger years provided them with a sense of familiarity and comfort.

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 cost-effective 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 in-depth 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 high a level of independence as possible. “This could mean people being able to stay in their own home, using

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!!

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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

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! 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

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PAGE 46 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

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 48 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

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 50 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

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.


PAGE 52 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

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

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

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

THE BENEFITS OF CYBER INSURANCE

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

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

Specialist care home insurance We arrange tailored insurance programmes for care and nursing homes, hospices and domiciliary care providers, for both staff and business owners. Our extensive knowledge of the care market will help to ensure you have the right protection in place for now and, for the future. Secure robust cover that’s right for your business.

CALL NOW FOR A QUOTE

Impartial advice from experienced advisers

Exceptional service from a dedicated account executive

Let us help you to protect your business with a no obligation risk review today!

Market-leading products from A rated insurers

Give us a call: Send us an email: Visit our website: Follow us:

Support with claims

Guidance on risk management solutions including H&S and HR

01480 272727 enquiries@barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk www.barnesinsurancebroker.co.uk/care /barnes-commercial

Barnes Commercial Insurance Broker is a trading style of Barnes Commercial Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, FRN: 844370. Registered address: 3 Fenice Court, Phoenix Park, Eaton Socon, St Neots, Cambs, PE19 8EW. Registered in England and Wales. Registered number: 11909011.


PAGE 54 | THE CARER DIGITAL | ISSUE 68

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Selling by Auction Is the Fastest Care Home Finance from Global and Most Certain Way to Complete Business Finance a Property Transaction

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

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

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

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

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

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

THE NEED FOR GOVERNMENT SUPPORT Unlike NHS-run hospitals, care homes are often privately owned businesses and therefore their revenue comes from patient fees. In an effort to help the sector in its recovery, the Government announced additional financial support for care homes, including a £600 million adult social care infection control fund. However, this funding was distributed across local authorities and deployed at their discretion, and therefore wasn’t readily available to every care home business. 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% preCOVID-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


Profile for The Carer

The Carer Digital - Issue #68  

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

The Carer Digital - Issue #68  

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

Profile for thecarer

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