The Carer #49 Summer 2020

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Issue 49

Care Homes Were An “Afterthought” in the Fight Against Coronavirus Pandemic

A damning report has revealed that 25,000 hospital patients were discharged into care homes without being tested for the coronavirus at the very height of the pandemic. The National Audit Office (NAO) report - the first independent review of preparations for the pandemic - said care homes were overlooked in order to

protect the NHS. The NAO added that the central stockpile of personal protective equipment (PPE) lacked items such as gowns and visors, despite an independent committee recommending their inclusion last year. Chair of the Committee of Public Accounts, Meg Hillier, said care home staff and residents have been

treated as an ‘afterthought’ during the crisis. Ms Hillier said: ’Shockingly, the Government squandered the last opportunity to add to the central PPE stockpile, even after the NHS had gone to the highest level of alert.


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VIEWPOINT Welcome to an extra printed edition of THE CARER. At the very beginning of the crisis we felt it vital to extend our reach to the sector and have introduced extra printed issues and, as regular readers will be aware, we have also introduced our very successful (we are delighted to say) CARER DIGITAL, distributed directly to your inbox each Wednesday. (You can sign up to recieve it and our Editor regular newsletters on our website at To say that the overworked social care sector has been under intense scrutiny would be an understatement. What is increasingly becoming clear (as if we did not already know!) is that the sector was badly guided and advised, creating a myriad of challenges. I have said in past editorials that there will be a “day of reckoning”, and I am sure you, like me, are looking forward to it. One look at the story on page 13, where a report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that people working in the social care sector or at a significantly higher risk of fatality. A truly alarming statistic, compounded by our front page story, which reveals (again by the ONS) that care homes were an “afterthought” in the fight against the Corona pandemic. What is even more alarming is the statement from the Department of health and social care that they “took the correct decision at the time”. In a statement by the permanent undersecretary of the department Sir Chris Wormald again earlier this month he denied when it was put to him that the government had been “reckless” in its discharging of patients into the care sector without any testing whatsoever. I don’t think such statements are ever going to stand up in any official inquiry. It was a quite intolerable error of judgement. The pandemic has served to highlight the chronic issues, particularly in funding, for those who provide adult social care and it also served to highlight how undervalued those working in social care have been and how much they have been taken for granted. I despise the term “lessons must be learned” - one that is rolled out after every crisis - but as the long-awaited social distancing is now eased, the warning by the NHS Confederation that “viruses can return with a vengeance” must be heeded. Second waves, I understand, are always more dangerous. There is now an opportunity to completely overhaul the country’s approach to adult social care. There simply can be no more excuses! On another and more positive note I would take this opportunity for allowing us the opportunity to promote what the industry does best! And this of course is thanks to you! As the pandemic unfolded we have been astounded at the cheerful, positive and heartwarming stories you have sent us, exhibiting all the great attributes the sector is known for. Anniversaries, celebrations, birthdays, fundraising, initiatives, all positive enhancing stories to make the lives of residents happier and fulfilled, and at the same time raising the spirits among the workforce at a time when needed most so very well done!

Peter Adams

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Care Homes Were an “Afterthought” in Fight Against Coronavirus Pandemic (...CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER) ’Care homes were at the back of the queue for both PPE and testing so only got a small fraction of what they needed from central government. Residents and staff were an afterthought yet again: out of sight and out of mind, with devastating consequences.’ Former Conservative Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt who chairs the Commons health and social care committee : said: "it seems extraordinary that no one appeared to consider the clinical risk to care homes despite widespread knowledge that the virus could be carried asymptomatically". He added: "Places like Germany and Hong Kong took measures to protect their care homes that we did not over a critical four-week period." Unison assistant general secretary, Christina McAnea, added: 'This is a catalogue of errors and highlights once again a complete absence of planning or thought for social care. 'Discharging patients to care homes without testing was simply scandalous and accelerated the spread of the virus among an obviously high-risk group.' The report also revealed that action taken by the NHS to increase capacity meant there were enough beds and respiratory support at the peak of the outbreak. This meant the number of Covid-19 patients never exceeded the number of beds available. The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) insisted it took the “right decisions at the right time” but was facing questions over its handling of the crisis in care homes. The NAO report said that one in three care homes had declared an outbreak by May 17 and that 25,000

patients were discharged from hospital into the sector between March 17 and April 15. “It is not known how many had Covid-19 at the point of discharge,” the report said, noting the policy at the time was not to test all those being discharged to care homes. Comptroller and auditor general Gareth Davies, head of the NAO, said: "This report demonstrates the enormous efforts of staff across health and social care to respond at speed to the unprecedented challenge of the Covid-19 pandemic. "While we have not sought to evaluate Government's response in this report, our work raises some important considerations. "The speed and nature of the response in health and social care has been shaped by longstanding differences between the sectors and ongoing financial pressures. "Government's ability to increase beds, ventilators, PPE and testing has varied in part because of the number of other bodies, both national and international, with which it has had to engage. "All of these issues need to be taken into account as Government plans for the later phases of the pandemic and future emergencies." Susan Masters, a director at the Royal College of Nursing, said: "Without the extraordinary efforts of nursing staff across health and social care, the impact of Covid-19 could have been worse. "But this report shows nursing staff were let down by a system ill-prepared to tackle this pandemic. "Years of under-investment means social care was left exposed."

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Thank Social Care Workers Across the UK

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have spoken to care workers from across the UK to hear about their experiences of providing care during the coronavirus outbreak, and to thank them for their tireless efforts to continue to look after the most vulnerable in our society. Their Royal Highnesses joined residents from the Shire Hall Care Home in Cardiff via video call as they played bingo in the home’s cinema. Shire Hall provides residential, nursing and dementia care and is part of Hallmark Care Homes, a family-run care provider with 19 care homes across England and Wales. The Duke and Duchess took their turn as guest bingo callers for one of the games, before speaking to some of the residents and their care workers. Before the game, The Duke and Duchess heard from members of the care team about the impact of Covid-19 and the challenges that they have faced as a result of the pandemic. Their Royal Highnesses also heard how the home has adapted to the current circumstances, including greater use of technology to

allow residents to stay in touch with their families and friends. Duke of Cambridge also held calls with care workers in England and Northern Ireland. Across the calls, they discussed the unique challenges of providing care throughout the pandemic, including the impact of the last few months on the mental health and wellbeing of both those receiving care and the caregivers themselves. His Royal Highness held a video call with care workers from different parts of the sector across England, including those providing care within people’s homes, personal assistance, and supported living services. The Duke heard about the measures that they have taken to ensure that they can continue to deliver care throughout the coronavirus outbreak, including by self-isolating from their own families. The participants discussed the impact that these measures have had on their own mental wellbeing, and the crucial need to support social care workers on the frontline of the coronavirus. His Royal Highness also heard about the work that is being carried out by The Care Workers Charity to help those across the social care sector. During this call, The Duke said: “If there’s hopefully some positivity that comes out of this horrendous time, it is that there’s a light shone on all of the wonderful things you all do and on the social care sector, and it allows people to acknowledge, respect and appreciate everything that you are doing.”


International Hiring of Skilled Care Workers, Post-Brexit

By Yash Dubal, founder and Managing Director of A Y & J Solicitors, the immigration experts.

Even in the healthiest of economies, the care sector has suffered under the weight of staffing crises. This can be attributed to a number of things, including the high cost of hiring skilled care workers, significant employee turnover, a shortage of qualified professionals‌and now the looming post-Brexit immigration points system which will go into effect January 2021. These changes are expected to significantly impair care homes’ ability to hire applicants from outside the UK. The outlined changes have been designed to ensure that immigrant workers aren’t being hired when nationals can fill positions. It’s also intended to ensure that migrants are only admitted for employment purposes if there’s a proven need for their skills. With so many care providers on the edge due to Covid-19 and an ongoing labour shortage, there’s understandable worry that it will be difficult to fill positions, particularly if care managers are suffocating under a pile of red tape. Many factors are unknown at this time. Workers’ visas that care homes thought would have already expired are being extended in response to the Covid-19 travel ban and increased demand for frontline healthcare workers. But when Covid-19 restrictions are lifted, care homes will have a brand-new hiring landscape to navigate.

There are currently no restrictions on people from the EU or Switzerland working in Britain. However, as of January 2021, skilled workers from those areas will join migrants from all over the world in needing visas. They will also need to meet skilled worker criteria—and there must be a job offer, as well as a wage threshold. Skilled migrant workers have always played a massive role in the UK’s economic recoveries. And for this reason, it’s in every care home’s best interest to start planning to bring these professionals into the country now.

HOW TO HIRE OVERSEAS WORKERS? The first step care homes should take is to acquire a sponsor license, and that application should be completed as soon as possible. Only a small percentage of UK businesses currently hold this license, and a rush is expected during the second half of 2020. This will allow for participation in the points system for hiring abroad, including European workers (who will need visas post-Brexit). Long-term job offers will be covered by UK immigration route under Tier 2 on the sponsor license application. After the application is received, a UK Visa and Immigration compliance officer may visit the care facility to review the application, ensure that systems for managing sponsored workers are in place and that there have been no potential breaches of laws or sponsorships.. There will be licensing and issuing fees, as well as an Immigration Skills Charge. If successful, businesses are then obliged to maintain an ongoing compliance system which involves: • Updating the Sponsorship Management System (SMS). This is an online system provided by UKVI. • Keeping records of checks undertaken. These include verifying foreign workers have the necessary skills, qualifications, and professional

accreditations. • Conducting a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) to ensure no settled worker can fulfil the role. • Ongoing monitoring of sponsored employees, including attendance and changes in contact details. • Advising UKVI of any non-compliance by sponsored workers. Sponsor licence holders are also required to appoint individuals to key roles. They need an authorising officer, a key contact and someone to undertake day-to-day management of the SMS. After employment (which will be subject to restrictions) is offered to a candidate, a CoS (Certificate of Sponsorship) must be requested from the Home Office.

POSITIVE CHANGES As complicated as it may seem, some previous rules will be relaxed starting in 2021. There will no longer be a cap on skilled migrant professionals, there will be no need to run a recruitment exercise to test resident labour market (also known as RLMT) , and the minimum salary will be reduced from ÂŁ30,000 to ÂŁ25,600.

CONCLUSION With this new landscape taking shape, many care homes are asking how they can competitively recruit, particularly when a skilled immigrant can enter other countries with less waiting and effort. Unless the system is significantly streamlined, it will be up to care homes to make sign-on packages attractive enough to strike a balance. That means looking ahead to expected vacancies, filling positions before Brexit immigration laws go into effect, studying the competition and what they’re offering, moving immediately toward completion of that sponsor license application‌and seeking out legal guidance for navigating immigration, post-Brexit.

Covid19: Accelerating the Use of Digital Technology in Healthcare As this crisis impacts every part of the health sector, significant vulnerabilities are being exposed. The NHS ‘digital revolution’ has long been touted as the key to futureproofing both Social Care and our health service in the face of increasing patient demand. That demand has now reached unprecedented levels and seems unlikely ever to revert to previous trends; against that background; there is an urgent requirement to move quickly to realise the opportunities which are available from digital technology. It is no longer an interesting speculation; it is an essential requirement to support staff and save lives. (Rt Hon Stephen Dorrell)

USING TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY Poor efficiencies in many areas of the sector are caused by the lack of investment in technology.

Technology will improve the way your staff carry out tasks by either speed up existing processes or allowing new, more flexible and accurate ways of carrying out a job or process which will in turn enables live real time management information. Would you expect to check out of a hotel with an invoice and extras raised in Word or Excel so why do many operators still use this method when invoic-

ing? How many industries with shift workers rely on manual payroll processing outside the care sector? Repeatable systems should harness the power of technology to cut back the massive waste of man hours spent processing and checking manual tasks. In order to work out the best technology for your needs, you should assess your current systems against your requirements. Think about what inefficiencies exist in your homes and how you could: 1. Capture relevant information, such as resident/staff details, in a simple, time-efficient way. 2. Manage your documents to ensure that information is dealt with logically. 3. Avoid duplication at all costs; completing handwritten timesheets which then need to be manually inputted into payroll is a massive, unnecessary waste of time & manpower. 4. Address technological obstacles. The perception that your staffs are not IT literate is out of date; most people own a smart phone so yes they are! See for details or see the advert on page 21.

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Save Our Homes After Covid-19 – Plea Care and nursing homes closing in the wake of coronavirus, could spark a second crisis in the care of older and vulnerable adults, a campaigner has warned. Speaking as the number of deaths in care and nursing homes fell again, Mike Padgham, Chair of the Independent Care Group (ICG) warned that a fresh danger of home closures was now on the horizon. His warning came after a care home on the Yorkshire coast closed down. Today’s figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that 369 people in England and Wales died in care and nursing homes from Covid-19 in the week up to 12th June, down from 564 the week before. Previous weeks saw 705, 1,090, 1,660, 1,666, 2,423 and 2,800 deaths respectively. The ONS says a total of 14,404 people died in care and nursing homes from Covid-19 between 28 December last year and 12th June. ICG Chair Mike Padgham said: “The downward trend in care and nursing home deaths is very welcome and we are all pleased and relieved that we seem to be passing the peak. “But we also have to be mindful that for some, this crisis will have been the final straw and may well cause the closure of some care and nursing homes, causing a fresh issue in social care. “The Government will have to step up its support for the sector to avoid a sudden loss of provision, or we will have a second crisis on our hands through a lack of places. “Here in Scarborough we have seen the Grosvenor Hall Care Home, which looked after 23 people, close, which is dreadful for those residents,

their relatives and the home’s staff. “We do not know the reasons, it may have been down to coronavirus it may have been down to the stresses on care homes that have existed now for some years.” The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) said increased costs due to Covid-19 had exacerbated an existing crisis in social care. An ADASS report warns that increased spending due to coronavirus – for example, on personal protective equipment (PPE), staffing costs and sickness cover – means some private care providers may go out of business. ADASS called for a two-year ring-fenced funding settlement for adult social care as well as reform of the sector, including better pay and conditions for care workers. Mr Padgham added: “We have long been promised a Green Paper on social care but it has been repeatedly delayed. “The sources of the current problems are well documented, but almost £8bn cut from social care budgets since 2010 has left a sector on its knees, and that is bound to lead to some homes closing. “To ensure this doesn’t happen, we have to have greater financial support to the sector now, followed by root and branch reform of social care, matched by enough funding to bring it to parity with NHS healthcare, alongside which providers have been battling to defeat Covid-19.” The ICG’s suggestions for the future include: • A root and branch overhaul of the way social care is planned and funded • NHS health care and social care to be merged and managed either locally or nationally • Extra funding for social care, funded by taxation or National Insurance • A guarantee that people receiving publicly-funded care can receive it in their own home or close to where they live • A commissioner for older people and those with Learning Disabilities in England • A properly-costed national rate for care fees linked to a national career

pathway and salary framework for care staff • Dementia to be treated like other high profile, high priority illnesses, like cancer and heart disease • A fixed percentage of GDP to be spent on social care • A cap on social care costs, including ‘hotel’ charges • Local Enterprise Partnerships to prioritise social care • A national scheme to ensure people save for their own care, as they do for a pension • A new model of social care delivery based on catchment areas – like GPs • Social care businesses to be zero-rated for VAT so that they can claim it back, as other business sectors do • CQC to have much greater powers to oversee all commissioning practises such as per minute billing and 15-minute visits • Less duplication of inspection between CQC and local authorities/clinical commissioning groups • Greater recognition of the role of the independent sector and utilisation of its expertise in the commissioning and delivery of social care • Guaranteed equal partnership working through seats on Health and Well Being Boards, CCGs and NHS • Giving providers and CQC greater flexibility in delivering services • Providing telemedicine incentives • Allowing nurses and social care staff from overseas to work in the U.K. including lowering the salary cap • More nurse training and bursaries to encourage recruitment and end the shortage of nurses • Long term measures to integrate older and younger people in care settings and change the perception of the generations • Investment in research and development into new models of social care delivery • Funding to help upgrade older care homes to maintain a range of choice for the public and investment in domiciliary care • Funding for leadership training.

Health Chiefs Deny Care Home Discharge Policy Was 'Recklessness' Discharging 25,000 patients into care homes in England at the beginning of April, when the number of coronavirus cases was precipitously increasing, was neither reckless nor wrong, the Department of Health and Social Care’s most senior civil servant said stating that guidance for discharge was correct based on the information available at the time. The care sector has been highly critical of the government’s guidance instructing hospitals to discharge elderly residents to free up beds, which saw the death rate in care homes due to the coronavirus increase significantly. A government document advised hospitals, ‘to free up NHS capacity via rapid discharge into the community and reducing planned care.’ The strategy, drafted on March 17, cautioned NHS hospitals that ‘timely discharge’ was important, urging care homes to accept patients who had not been tested for coronavirus. Department of Health and Social Care permanent secretary Sir Chris Wormald told MPs on the public accounts committee (PAC): ‘We didn’t want to keep clinically fit patients in hospital where they could get the virus. The decision we took around discharge was taken on clinical advice and was rational at the time.’ “There were clearly risks in whatever we did in these circumstances,” Sir Chris said, adding there was “no no-risk option”. The National Audit Office reported that between 9 March and 17 May, around 5,900 (38%) care homes across England reported an outbreak

peaking at just over 1,000 homes in the first week of April. Between 17 March and 15 April, around 25,000 people were discharged from hospitals into care homes, compared to around 35,000 over this period in 2019. It is not known how many had COVID-19 at the point of discharge. Conservative MP Geoffrey Clifton-Brown told Sir Chris: 'You were sending people from hospitals in quite large numbers into the care home sector which you knew was already facing a substantial and increasing number of Covid patients of their own. 'They didn't have sufficient PPE, they didn't have sufficient testing and they were the most vulnerable group in society. How could that have made any sense whatsoever?' Sir Chris said hospitals were expecting 'large numbers of Covid patients' and people who were clinically able to be discharged should have been. He acknowledged there had been 'huge challenges' in care homes but 'considerable progress' had been made. He later added: 'We are in a process of learning as we go along about these issues. I am confident that based on the information that we had at the time our guidance was correct. That is not the same as saying we would do the same again.' NHS England's national medical director Steve Powis told the PAC that modelling projected that an serious epidemic would have overwhelmed the health service. He said patients who were 'clinically fit' were discharged, but Sir Geoffrey questioned how this could have been known without a coron-

avirus testing regime in place. Prof Powis said the NHS was following the testing advice provided by Public Health England (PHE). Professor Paul Johnstone of PHE told the committee that 3,500 tests a day were available at the time. The NAO report said that until mid-April, there was a policy to test no more than five symptomatic residents in any one care home. Sir Chris told the committee that - particularly during March - the number of available tests was 'quite limited and much smaller than we would have wanted'. NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens said it was presently in discussions about extending the contract with the independent sector to supply 8,000 hospital beds to the NHS on an 'at-cost' basis. He said that while the initial contract agreed in March was to provide a reserve capacity if the NHS was overwhelmed with coronavirus cases, in future it was likely to be to provide back-up for other services. 'We do expect that we will want to continue to make use of independent sector capacity for the balance of the year in order to give more buffer for routine surgery, cancer care and other conditions,' he said. We are in discussion with Government about that but my hunch is that we will want to sustain a relationship with the independent hospitals.'


Reading and Audiobooks May Reduce Loneliness in Care Homes

by Dr Deborah Lee, Dr Fox Online Pharmacy

Life in a care home can be very lonely. Even before COVID-19, 60% of care home residents had no regular visitors. Age UK had reported that 200,000 older people had not a conversation with friends or family for a month. When asked, 3.9 million older people, said the TV was their main companion. Since lockdown in March 2020, in conjunction with expert advice from the British Geriatric Society, Care Homes were advised that the risks from having visitors outweighed the benefits, and all visits, with very few exceptions, had to stop. Care home residents are now at risk of being lonelier than ever. Loneliness has serious adverse effects on physical and mental health. For example, in one 2012 Swiss survey, those who described themselves as lonely were significantly more likely to have a variety of chronic diseases, including high cholesterol, diabetes, depression, and psychological distress. Loneliness was also associated overall, with an increase in smoking, and alcohol consumption, and a decrease in levels of physical inactivity. It’s a sad fact - lonely people are 50% more likely to die prematurely. Being lonely is bad for your health, as smoking 15 cigarettes per day.


Many ideas have been put forward to combat loneliness, including activities clubs, befriending services, attending day centres, and lunch clubs. However, there are challenges in providing these services in the face of social distancing and the pandemic. One alternative option exists. Have you considered helping elderly residents to do more reading? Reading – or more correctly termed ‘bibliotherapy’ - is actually a recognised therapeutic technique for people suffering from stress, anxiety, depression and other medical conditions. “Reading is to the mind, what physical exercise is to the body,” says Carla

Greenwood from the World Literacy Foundation.


Whereas many elderly people may find reading a print book difficult – perhaps due to failing eyesight, difficulty with long periods of concentration, or physical problems holding books and turning pages, there’s always the option of audiobooks. This may be an under-used resource. When a person reads a fiction book, they become engaged in the story and undergo a specific cognitive process. This means the detach from their current environment and experience a range of emotions, they think more critically and engage in problem-solving. Reading enhances reasoning skills, vocabulary, self-expression, and improves concentration. It also improves empathy and influences emotional intelligence. When you read – even if this is only 6 minutes per day! - this has been shown to lower blood pressure, slow the heart rate, reduce cortisol levels (stress hormone), and make you feel calmer and more relaxed. A 2016 American study, the authors compared the long-term survival rates of people aged 50-90 years, with their reading habits. 3636 participants (already enrolled as part of a Health and Retirement Study), were regularly interviewed over a 12-year period. The study investigators found that reading for an average of half an hour a day, resulted in a 20% decrease in mortality, compared to non-readers. Book reading means immersing yourself in another world, which is thought to be beneficial to maintain cognitive function. Interestingly, these results only applied to reading fiction books – not to newspapers or magazines. 87% of the above study participants, who were regular readers, were reading fiction books.


What about a book club? There are currently around 50,000 book clubs in the UK. They are increasingly popular, and even in lockdown, meetings have been continuing, for example, on Zoom. Even older people with medical conditions can benefit from a book club. In one 2019 study of 10 stroke patients with aphasia (language and com-

munication difficulties), there were positive improvements in reading comprehension from attendance at a progamme of 7 book club sessions. The authors noted the benefits from social engagement and commented these sessions could be incorporated into rehabilitation protocols. In another 2017 study, 8 cancer patients completed a 24-week active book club which involved listening to an audiobook, walking with a pedometer and supervised book club meetings. Although the results were mixed, the authors concluded that audiobooks can bring a whole new meaning to going for a walk, but noted it was important to choose an appropriate type of literature and choice of story. Participants found listening to a story being narrated was challenging, but they found it was mentally absorbing and that the experience was meaningful. They recognized the programme had also focused on listening skills, and that talking about the books, then focused on their speaking skills. This is the first published study to link audiobooks to physical activity and has shown overall positive benefits. Perhaps care homes could consider what can be done to assist their residents to read, and improve their access to audiobooks, as a way of combatting loneliness?


Listening Books – A charity, with over 8000 titles which can be sent through the post as CD’s, or downloaded directly to a computer/listening device. There is a small membership fee of £20 per year. Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) -Talking Book Service. You can choose to receive your book on a CD or a memory stick or to download it directly onto your own listening device. Calibre Audio – A free audiobook service for anyone with a print disability – that is the inability to read a printed page, for example, a learning disability, a brain injury or a stroke, or a neurological condition such as multiple sclerosis or Parkinson’s Disease.

‘Team Work, Love And Joy’: One-Team Colten Celebrates Carers Hundreds of team members at a care home provider in the south have overcome lockdown challenges to raise awareness of the vital role carers play in the community. Family-owned Colten Care invited staff at all its 21 homes in Hampshire, Dorset, Sussex and Wiltshire to champion Carers Week. Reflecting its ‘one-team’ approach to residents’ wellbeing, taking part were Colten’s nurses, carers, chefs, receptionists, administrators, hairdressers, gardeners, maintenance staff and colleagues in other roles too. Organised and led by Companionship Team Leaders at each home, the week featured the sharing of thank-you messages and handwritten thoughts on the positive difference that working in care makes. Posted on message boards across the homes were sentiments such as: ‘I came to work today because I like to see joy on the residents’ faces’, ‘Working in care is about giving the care that they deserve and can’t provide for themselves’, and ‘The best part of my job is everyone and everything being one team’. One carer summed up her job satisfaction by writing: ‘Team work, love and joy’. Donia O’Connor, Senior Companionship Team Leader, said: “Colleagues highlighted many reasons why a career in care is so rewarding, from the compliments you receive from residents and their families to the pride and satis-

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faction you have knowing you have helped make someone’s day by your words and actions.” Amid ongoing social distance restrictions, the week featured daily treats for staff and residents such as homemade cakes, ice lollies and doughnuts and a co-ordinated singing of the Dolly Parton hit and popular ‘workplace anthem’ Nine to Five. Colten Care Operations Director Elaine Farrer said: “During the Covid situation, our team has been absolutely magnificent in ensuring safety, keeping residents’ spirits up and communicating what has been happening in our homes with residents’ families and friends. As with carers across the country, both paid and unpaid, we are blessed with employing people who are dedicated, hard-working and compassionate individuals.” Residents at Fernhill, Colten’s Outstanding-rated dementia care home in Longham, Dorset, have given the care they receive a big thumbs-up. Asked to describe their carers, Phyllis said: “They are lovely. They look after us and we love them.” Fellow resident Joyce said: “It’s nice having them around to look after us. I like it here have nothing to complain about.” Carers Week, established by the charity Carers UK 26 years ago, is an annual awareness campaign to celebrate and recognise the vital contribution made by the UK’s 6.5 million carers.


In This Time of Crisis, Nominate YOUR Unsung Hero A 2 night luxury break for 2 people in a choice of over 300 hotels awaits the Summer Carer Unsung Hero! Once again we here at The Carer are looking for an Unsung Hero! To say that the healthcare /social care system has been under pressure recently would be stating the obvious, and we are all to aware of many thousands of Unsung Heroes at this time! The current health crisis has highlighted all the hard work and dedication that those working in the sector deliver on a daily basis. There is no doubt that there are many heroes working in the social care sector and we are offering a chance to nominate yours - that person who has gone that extra mile and whose work deserves recognition. Over the past couple of years we have invited residential and nursing care homes to nominate somebody in their home who they believe is that “Unsung Hero”. Every care home will have somebody who goes that extra mile, and often receives little recognise or reward, and, over the past two years we have had a phenomenal response to

our Unsung Hero award, with some absolutely heartwarming and uplifting stories. With the current health crisis we thought that it was only right that we should once again add to our Unsung Hero winners. Once again we have have a fantastic luxury break for two in a choice of over 300 hotels for that lucky Unsung Hero winner. No catches no rules no gimmicks, simply nominate somebody in your care environment who you think has done something you feel has made an impact and gone that extra mile and is worthy of a nomination. They can be from any department, frontline care, laundry, maintenance, kitchen, administration we will leave that up to you. We will be drawing a winner before the next print edition later in April, so please nominate with a short paragraph on why you are putting your nominee forward and send by Monday, July 6.

Care Sector Launches #StarsInMemory Campaign to Remember the Lives Lost by COVID The care sector has joined together to launch the #StarsInMemory campaign, which encourages everyone who has experienced loss and bereavement in their lives to connect by making a star and placing it in their window, or posting on social media on 30 June 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has produced widespread personal loss and tragedy, with the Care sector often located at the centre of this. Each person who has died during the pandemic leaves enduring memories amongst their loved ones and those that they have touched in their lives. However, despite the daily statistics, the personal losses remain largely invisible and there have been few opportunities for people to share their grief collectively, or to link this grief to previous and existing loss and bereavement. Stars can be any size, made in any material and decorated according to individual preference. Vic Rayner, Executive Director, National Care Forum, said: “Loss is a very personal thing and affects us all in

Care England Welcomes National Support Service for Emotional Wellbeing of Care Staff Care England has welcomed the establishment a national support service for care workers. Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “Care workers are the front line, they need and deserve a centralised support service where they can glean emotional support. COVID-19 has put even more emotional pressures on adult social care workers and it is of paramount importance that we support them. Our staff are our biggest and best resource and need to be treated accordingly”. On 29 June Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP, Shadow Minister for Mental Health, proposed a national support service with a centralised number that care workers can ring if and when they need emotional support. Labour’s four stage Care for Carers package would cover all NHS and social care staff in England. Staffed by paid professionals it would include: 1. A new national hotline available 24 hours a day, seven days a week 2. Follow-up support, including specialist assessments and referrals 3. Intervention and treatment, including specialised PTSD support 4. Follow-up and sign-posted to external services, such as alcohol and addiction services. Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP, Shadow Minister for Mental Health, says: “Even before the pandemic hit, the case for investing in this kind of support was clear. Coronavirus has exacerbated the existing crisis in mental health. We need to care for our carers. It is time for the Government to give back to those who have sacrificed so much to keep our loved ones safe. Unless our staff are protected, they cannot continue their vital work of keeping us all safe”.

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many different ways. However, across care we have also felt and responded to this loss as only a community can. Coming together, sharing our strength and sharing our tears. In some small way, we hope that by recognising this loss together, we can show not only our individual pain, but also shine on a light on how we are united in our love, respect and regard for those who are no longer with us”.

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Virus with a Vengeance - NHS Confederation Urges Caution Responding to the easing of social distancing announced by the Prime Minister today, Niall Dickson, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, which represents organisations across the healthcare sector, said: “This virus can return with a vengeance, so the government is right to be cautious. There are two things now that will make the difference between success and failure – common sense and Test and Trace. “The call went up to protect the NHS at the start of this emergency and the public answered – now the call is the same but instead of ‘stay at home’ the message is wash your hands, keep your distance. The range of advice for different settings is inevitably more complex and nuanced, and more open to abuse, but following it sensibly is the only way to keep ourselves and others safe. “And we also need an effective Test and Trace system to stamp on local outbreaks as soon as they occur. This service is building up in England, but we will need to monitor it closely and we must be prepared to reim-

pose restrictions locally or nationally if that is needed. “The NHS remains on tenterhooks with everyone aware the virus can strike again. In hospitals, surgeries, and clinics up and down the country, services are welcoming patients back but at nothing like normal capacity. Our members are clear – it is proving far more difficult to reopen than to close, and having to do so with the virus still present is like having one hand tied behind your back. “We will also have to consider the implications of reduced social distancing, but we understand it will mean fewer restrictions in patient care settings with at least some services able to run at higher rates of occupancy than was envisaged. But it will remain a very different and much less productive world with the need for separate areas, social distancing arrangements and personal protective equipment (PPE), including face coverings for staff and visitors. “We are not back to normal and if we are to defeat this terrible disease, it will require eternal vigilance.”

Families Reunite Safely at Sunrise of Purley’s Walk and Wave Event The UK lockdown meant that residents at Sunrise of Purley were unable to see their loved ones in person until now. As soon as it was completely safe to do so, the team at the home organised a ‘Walk and Wave’ event so families could see each other once again, at a safe social distance. Families were overjoyed to be reunited with the residents; one resident was able to meet her greatgrandchild for the first time. Local events company, Red Chilli Events, ensured there was plenty of decorations including balloon displays to mark the special occasion. Jon Burchell attended the ‘Walk and Wave’ to see both his parents who are residents at the home. Jon said: “Thanks so much to the team for laying on the ‘Walk and Wave’. It was lovely to see mum and dad after so long. “I was really impressed by the effort you had all put into it and I hope all the residents were equally as happy to see their families as we were to see them.” Phillip Mills also attended the event to see his mother Ann. He added: “Lovely to see the team and well done for organising such a brilliant event for families to have some precious moments of normality and sanity.

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“I’m sure that took a lot of logistical gymnastics. It was all delivered with such a lovely spirit of graciousness and kindness. Thank you so much. It was hugely appreciated.” Rebecca Peters, Director of Community Relations at Sunrise of Purley, said: “This was such a wonderful event for us all. The weather did not dampen anyone’s spirits and residents and their families were so happy to see each other for the first time in so long. “We will continue finding ingenious solutions so we can allow residents to see their families while ensuring they are all safe. We can’t wait until the day we can have visitors come back into the home properly!”

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Why Sticking to a Nutritious Diet and Taking Regular Exercise are Lockdown Essentials With Men’s Health Awareness Week having taken place earlier this month, QCS focuses on the importance of maintaining exercise and a healthy diet in the lockdown. When we look back at the Coronavirus Pandemic in years to come, what will we remember most? For many, the enduring image will be of a 99-year-old man completing the hundredth lap of his garden to raise funds for ‘NHS Charities Together’. Captain Sir Thomas Moore, who turned 100 in May, had only set out to raise £1,000 but his herculean efforts and indefatigable spirit won the heart of the public. By the end of the charity campaign, he had raised a whopping £37.4 million. But, in the month that marked Men’s Health Awareness Week, the Captain’s remarkable feat of physical endurance, has shone a spotlight on the importance of service users taking regular exercise. For those service users “wishing to stay independent well into old age”, NHS guidance stresses the importance of taking regular exercise. But mobility aside, the NHS says that exercise also lowers the risk of “heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes some cancers, as well as depression and Dementia”. There are of course many service users, who are much younger. Take the 1.5 million people in the UK with learning disabilities, for example. We know that, in 2018/19, around 155,070 adults with a learning disability (age 18+) accessed long-term or short-term social care support in England. Philippa Shirtcliffe, whose company, Quality Compliance Systems (QCS), has created a bespoke set of policies. procedures and factsheets, which thousands of Registered Managers have downloaded during the Pandemic, explains “It doesn’t mean that elderly service users should mimic Sir Tom’s monumental achievement. For most it won’t be possible. In aspiring to deliver a culture of person-centred care, regardless of age, it’s more about recognising that service users have varying physical thresholds and finding an exercise programme that is both beneficial and enjoyable for them.”

AN INNOVATIVE AND AGILE APPROACH NEEDED But, for many, maintaining a fitness programme during the Coronavirus Pandemic has not been easy. Lockdown has seen many activity clubs put on hold and prevented the most vulnerable from exercising outside. It has meant that front-line care teams have had to be more innovative. So what does an effective exercise programme look like in Lockdown? Age UK has worked with Nuffield Health to devise a fitness conditioning plan, which helps works the heart, build core muscle groups and, most importantly of all, can be carried out in any home. The six exercises, which you can find on Age UK’s website, include chair squats, single leg stands,

upper body, rotations, wall push-ups, overhead lifts and stair stepping. Dr Ben Kelly, Nuffield Health’s Head of Clinical Research and Outcomes, says, “The programme is designed to work all of the major muscle groups and improve balance and co-ordination. Whilst this is a gym based programme, we are creating sessions that can also be replicated at home, using a chair, a wall, a broom, a couple of tins and your staircase.” Caroline Abrahams, Age UK’s Charity Director, said: “Being even modestly active gives you a boost and this is particularly important during lockdown…Even if you don’t feel able to complete all the activities then gardening, dancing, some simple chair or bed based stretches, a light stroll around the garden or in different rooms in the house are all good pick-meups. Something as simple as standing up regularly can help. Try and find what works for you and never underestimate the difference even a small amount of movement can make.”

ARMCHAIR EXERCISE PROGRAMMES But what about those with mobility challenges who find exercise difficult? Age UK recommends that people who live more sedentary lifestyles, stand-up every hour and regularly move their arms and legs. According to Age UK, to maintain fitness and mobility, another key exercise is to practice standing up from a sitting position - without seeking the assistance of a carer or a walker. Age UK also recommends five gentle stretches, which you can find here, and finally, that service users always look to walk between rooms. For those with physical disabilities or those living with Dementia, seated exercises can be very effective in building fitness and improving emotional wellbeing.

THE ROLE OF TECHNOLOGY In the crisis too, according to QCS’s Philippa Shirtcliffe, technology has played a major role in helping service users to keep fit. “With care homes locked down, the dance teacher, the Zumba instructor or the occupational therapist may have not been able to visit. But the most innovative services, have ensured that their service users have been able to continue to participate, by using video conferencing platforms to directly link serve users to their teachers and instructors. We know from speaking to many of our customers that this has proved extremely effective and has in no way lessened the enjoyment of those participating.”

THE IMPORTANCE OF MAINTAINING A HEALTHY DIET However, it is not just providing an accessible and enjoyable fitness programme in a service that makes a difference to men’s health, promoting a nutritious diet (in all care settings), is crucial too. But, with the UK sector disparate and fragmented, this is no easy task says QCS’s Philippa Shirtcliffe. “The care sector is by no means a uniform landscape. It is highly nuanced in shape and size and needs to cater for people with a range of complex needs. In addition to providing healthy and nutritious food for every service user, the CQC dictates that those catering for the sector must also take into account food intolerances, and cultural and religious preferences.” Apetito, a European frozen food company, which - like QCS - is a partner of the National Care Forum, supplies 20,000 residents in 600 care homes

with healthy, accessible and bespoke food options. So how does it meet the challenge outlined by Mrs Shirtcliffe? Apetito dietician, Emily Stuart, says the ability to understand the range of needs within each care home customer” and “adapt to their individual needs” is central to its culture. She says, “We work closely with our care home customers to plan their menus alongside their own teams. Each of our customers has a dedicated account manager who is there to support them with as much help as they need, which can vary according to the size of the home and the resources they have within their catering teams (for example, some have dietitians who work with them).”

ONE SIZE FITS ALL DIETS OUT. BESPOKE DIETS IN In terms of meeting individual nutritional needs, Apetito does not advocate “a one size fits all” approach. For those men presenting with diabetes and/or cardio vascular for example, Apetito provides meals which are lower in fat, sugars and salt and meet rigorous standards set by the British Dietetics Association and NACC standards. Says Emily, “It is important to recognise, however, that while these meals are lower in fats, sugar and salt, residents living with these conditions, might still be at risk of malnutrition and so they are not always appropriate. Instead they may need additional calories, so we would look to recommend our ‘energy dense’ range of meals, which contain at least 500 calories.” Apetito has also researched and created nutrition rich meals, which are 40 percent smaller than standard servings, for people living with Dementia or Dysphagia, who often become anxious when faced with a large meal. Catering for religious and cultural preferences. When creating meal options, Apetito also takes cultural and religious preferences extremely seriously, which take into account Halal, Kosher, vegetarian and vegan diets. Emily adds, “We work in partnership with specialist providers to ensure that our Halal and Kosher meals meet the highest nutritional standards. Vegetarian and Vegan diets have increased in popularity in recent years and our research and productions teams are constantly adapting our menus to give our customers what they want. In achieving this, the secret is to constantly survey our customers to find out what they like, what they don’t like and what they would like to see on future menus.” This person-centred approach, not only ensures that services deliver nutritious meals, but that there’s little left on the plate – however complex and nuanced a person’s dietary requirements. QCS factsheets Men’s Health 10-point factsheet Men’s Health Food Toolkit


'Revolution Required' to Solve Social Care Crisis ‘Strength and A new paper from the neoliberal think tank the Adam Smith Institute argues that the social care system is broken, unfit for purpose and cannot be fixed by new taxes. The UK social care system is broken, unfit for purpose and cannot be fixed by new taxes and spending or making more people eligible for free care, says a new report by the Adam Smith Institute. While Covid-19 has focused attention on elderly people in care homes, half of social care spending actually goes on younger people with physical, mental health or learning problems, plus help delivered to people’s own homes. The whole system is in crisis, argues the Adam Smith Institute, distorted by perverse incentives, unfair and woefully out of date. While there has been much talk about raising public care spending and providing more free care, it argues, only widespread and disruptive change will solve the deeper problems and prevent future cases of neglect. The think-tank calls for “disruption” to the system and for “new partnerships in new markets that embrace fundamental change.” “People aren’t looking beyond how to get more money into social care,” argues the report’s co-author Eamonn Butler. “And more funding is seen as a magic bullet that would solve all the problems. But an arbitrary boost to care budgets will do little good. We can only solve the crisis in social care by looking at and radically reforming the whole system, not just one part of it.” From 2017 onwards the Government promised a Green Paper, aiming to “ensure that the care and support system is sustainable in the long term” and to improve integration with health and other services and between different care providers. During the 2017 General Election campaign, former Prime Minister Theresa May said the proposals would include a lifetime “absolute limit” on what people pay for social care—though there was less agreement on how this

would work, how much it would cost, and how it would be funded. After the 2019 election there was talk of a White Paper, before the Covid-19 outbreak cut discussions short. Most care homes with residents funded by local authorities are over 20 years old and no longer up to modern standards, the free market think tank argues. Many are converted old hotels and houses, with narrow corridors, small rooms and no en-suite bathrooms. Equally, self-pay residents get a raw deal from providers and insufficient protection from regulators. Meanwhile, live-in carers hired by families typically have no qualifications and many are paid less than the national living wage. And care delivered free to vulnerable people in their own homes by local authorities is usually selected on price, not quality, and there is very little use of modern information and artificial intelligence technology that could spectacularly raise its quality and efficiency. “The idea of making social care free to everyone as part of the NHS, possibly funded by a new ‘care tax’, is a nonstarter,” says Eamonn Butler, warning that “this would be the largest nationalisation ever. The NHS has 170,000 beds in 1,300 hospitals. Adding another 480,000 beds in around 20,000 nursing and care homes would overwhelm it completely.” The Institute also thinks it unlikely that the government would stump up the hundreds of millions of pounds needed to upgrade residential homes, or that taxpayers would accept the extra burden. Instead it advocates a partnership with private pension and insurance investors to develop large numbers of new and upgraded facilities, and lease them to local authorities, giving local authorities a long term, whole-service package without having to find the capital to build new homes themselves. And it says that there are other options, such as individual savings accounts or the Australian system, a mixture of voucher subsidies and refundable bonds, should be

explored first before any hasty decisions are made. On funding, the report’s authors say that insurance is not presently a viable way of people providing for the care they might need later on, because the insurance industry cannot cope with the ‘long tail’ risk—the risk that a few individuals might need a great many years in a residential nursing or care home. In order to create a viable insurance system and induce more families to contribute to their own care needs, the Institute proposes risk-sharing between individuals and government. If people insure themselves for six years’ of residential care, they suggest, the government would pick up anything beyond. This helps ‘pool’ risk and makes insurance affordable. In return, public funding and long term care budgets should give much higher priority to younger adults with physical disabilities, mental health or learning problems, whose needs have long been under-resourced. A more rational and affordable care system will involve disrupting the market, but will deliver better supply, sustainability and fairness in a more functional system. Without a radical overhaul of provision, increases in public funding will not avoid future crises. Andrew Lansley, former Secretary of State for Health (under the Coalition) stated, I welcome this further contribution to the debate on how we can sustain social care in the future. I do sincerely hope that this will encourage action now”. Peter Carter, former Chief Executive of the Royal College of Nursing commented, “This interesting paper provides a way forward on one of the most pressing issues facing society across the UK at this time. Social care is under huge pressure and the existing model of funding is not sustainable. I would recommend this paper as a way forward.”

Aycliffe Angel Celebrates Turning 106 With Almost 600 Birthday Cards Renee Glover, believed to be the oldest woman in Darlington, marked her 106th birthday (Sunday 21 June) with 587 cards and special celebrations at her care home in Darlington. Before the big day, Renee’s five-generation family launched an appeal for local people to send her cards to mark the occasion as lockdown had impacted other plans, hoping for 106 of them. 318 cards were sent in to the care home, Wilton House, and a collection box was added to the entrance of Tesco in Newton Aycliffe which received over 200 cards. The cards from the collection box were delivered by members from Aycliffe Bike Club who arranged a special procession. Her Majesty The Queen, Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Darlington MP Peter Gibson also sent cards and letters with birthday wishes. Renee’s family have been blown away by the public’s response, with enough cards being sent to decorate a whole wall in the dining room of her care home. Socially distanced celebrations were planned by Renee’s

granddaughters and care home staff. Renee’s family took it in turns to visit her from outside of the home while she sat in the dining room surrounded by all of her cards. A singer and guitarist performed outside for residents, Subway kindly gifted a birthday tea of sandwiches, crisps and cookies, and Cakes by Sarah donated a birthday cake. Renee’s granddaughter Sarah said: “We have been totally overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of the general public and local businesses which have contributed to making this lockdown birthday so very special.” Emma Hardy, care home manager at Wilton House added: “We have had the absolute pleasure of caring for Renee for four years. She is an amazing lady and deserving of every single card she received, which have taken over our dining room! We made her birthday really special despite the social distancing protections we have in place. It was lovely for Renee to see her family, enjoy some music, cake and a birthday tea. Some of our other residents also got to celebrate with her from a safe 2m distance.”

Resilience Party’ Held at Mill Lane Nursing Home

The team at Mill Lane Nursing Home in Felixstowe has held a garden party for its residents to celebrate the ‘strength and resilience’ that everyone has shown throughout the pandemic. The manager, Hanro Smith, arranged for a 1940s and 1950s-inspired singer, Sarah Mai, to perform in the gardens of the home, while residents enjoyed a barbecue with burgers, hot dogs and chips with a few glasses of prosecco. Hanro Smith said, “The residents have been so resilient; I think they come from a generation that pulls together, keeps smiling and carries on when times are hard, and that’s what they have done through this pandemic. We therefore wanted to have a celebration to recognise how incredibly well they have come through this and now, it’s feeling like the ‘new normal’. “We have started socially-distanced visits with relatives in the gardens, and our wholehome testing has come back negative and so a garden party felt the right thing to do. Everyone danced, sang and a lovely time was had by all.”


Caring For Mental Health During A Crisis and Beyond By Autism Wessex CEO, Siún Cranny COVID-19 has put a huge strain on every care facility in the UK, and internationally. The most vulnerable people in our communities are facing an unprecedented risk to their wellbeing, and those caring for them are in the limbo of the unknown. Now more than ever, it is crucial that mental health and wellbeing are at the forefront of everyone’s minds.


As a charity which cares for and supports neuro diverse people across the spectrum, many with additional difficulties, we see how diverse the day to day challenges are. However, one issue most autistic people face is anxiety around change. Routine is key and when that normality is broken, it can be incredibly difficult for individuals to cope. An important part of daily life for key workers within the charity is to help support clients to manage this. For those in residential homes, we needed to take measures to ensure that the home is isolated which has meant recreating familiar routines within the home environment. For example, one team of keyworkers created a “pub” in the back garden for one resident. Part of his routine was a daily a visit to his local for soft drink and a packet of crisps. To help him deal with lockdown, the temporary pub was created in the garden’s summerhouse with a few donated

items and other spare bits they had to-hand in the house. Familiarity helps to calm anxiety as well as encourage social skills and interaction amongst all in the home, which in turn helps to lift moods and maintain positivity.


The sacrifices being made by all care workers around the world have been astounding, and that includes our teams at Autism Wessex. Some have had to move out of their homes and into isolation to continue working and others are picking up double shifts to help cover absences. With this level of responsibility during a crisis, there is a high risk of burnout. I am a believer that prevention is better than cure – the more help, guidance and support we put in early on, the quicker we can address any problems. To help with this, we have trained up twenty members of staff to become mental health first aiders; a group of friendly and familiar faces who staff can turn to in complete confidence. Our finance team have also evolved to be a great help during this turbulent time; they down tools for an hour every day to become our ‘touchbase team’. They check in on our 500 employees, keep us up to date with issues and answer any general questions. It was really important to me to show our people that we are thinking of them and were there for them, even though we can’t see them face to face.


major change, this pandemic has given charities the opportunity to do things differently. For us, it has freed up some hard boundaries between departments and allowed space for inventiveness. What’s next is to build on the strengths of our charity. I want to use this time as an example to show that carers aren’t people with low career prospects. We are putting in place new learning pathways for our keyworkers so they can develop a career structure in the charity. We had started this before COVID, but COVID has spurred us on. We know that caring is an amazing job, but not everyone wants to move to management but unfortunately, it is the only way to progress in this field. We aim to change that. Our plan will support every keyworker with the opportunity for an expert career ladder with us, stepping away from the traditional management triangle and empowering them to achieve their aspirations. Supporting mental wellbeing and growth won’t stop after COVID-19 and it is as central to us for our staff as it is for our client group. Our wellbeing programme and our positive approach to key working will be central to our success of the future. Siún Cranny, CEO of Autism Wessex, joined the charity in 2017. She has a wealth of experience in the not-for-profit and public sectors having led Sargent Cancer Care for Children and a national mental health charity in Ireland. Her diverse experience includes leading the modernisation of Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

COVID-19 has turned a spotlight on the sector, and, as with any crisis or

“National Tea Week” is Coming Up - August 10th-16th (But it doesn’t have to be once a year- celebrate tea week every week) I am sure we have all been there, that time between lunch and dinner and the length of the day starts to wear. When this happens, need that little bit of vitality and social interaction it is an ideal time to take partake in that great British tradition and enjoy a delicious cup of tea and some light sandwiches, cakes and pastries! It’s also a great time sit back and to appreciate the day, unwind and bring a little bit of elegance and pomp to an otherwise unremarkable time of the day. Afternoon Tea Week was established to help secure a tradition that has graced British afternoons since the 1840’s. In those days, dinner often wasn’t served until 8pm, and lunch wasn’t actually a thing, so what was a hungry person to do? Create a new mini-meal in the middle of the day of course! Traditionally this meal contains tiny finger sandwiches, scones with jam and clotted cream, and sweet dainties like cakes and pastries to help lift the spirits, bolster energy, and see you through the rest of the day. This simple afternoon meal grew into a social event, especially for those who spent their lives in the upper echelons of the day’s society. This became even more prominent once Queen Victoria herself took part in

this tradition. At that point the concept of the ‘tea reception’ was born, lavish and fancy afternoon repasts that could host anywhere from a close collection of friends to a couple hundred of society’s most important faces. As the name suggests, tea was a central part of this meal, a tradition started by Anna, 7th Duchess of Bedford. She often found herself feeling weary or worn down in the middle of the day, and a pot of tea with a snack just seemed to be the best way to take care of it. She soon invited friends to join her for walks in the field, and the snowball that would become Afternoon Tea began. So, if you love your tea, there are plenty treats in store as the nation gears up for Afternoon Tea Week – the biggest celebration of teatime treats in the world. From 10 to 16 August, care homes up and down the United Kingdom will be celebrating in style, and of course it is a great time to raise awareness and improve Nutrition and Hydration Week. Within carer environments afternoon tea is a key focal point to demonstrate how this historic but effortless occasion is ideal for promoting and improving nutrition and hydration. As well as offering a number of nutri-

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Introducing the new HYGIEIA range In the past few weeks the design team at Euroservice have been focussing on the needs of the care sector taking into account the enormous pressures faced over the past few months. Elegant and practical new designs have emerged from market research and the new HYGIEIA service trolleys have been created to combine hygiene and social distancing with style and elegance. The new HYGIEIA trolleys are an attractive and practical alternative to clinical aluminium trolleys given that antibacterial spray can be used freely to sanitise them. Moreover, when not in use the attractive trolleys can be used as a vending trolley, selling personal care products to residents or snacks/pastries to visitors. Your lovely trolley could do so much for you and your residents! Get in touch with our friendly sales team and we will be happy to help find a trolley to meet your needs.

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ONS Study Reveals Social Care Workers at Increased Risk of Death From Coronavirus

Men working in social care in England and Wales are 2.5 times more likely to die from Covid-19 than working-age men as a whole, the Office for National Statistics has found. The ONS analysis, which also shows women in social care with a mortality rate twice that of working age women generally, will increase pressure on the government over the heavy death toll suffered by care homes. Men and women working in social care, a group including care workers and home carers, both had significantly raised rates of death involving COVID-19, with rates of 50.1 deaths per 100,000 men (97 deaths) and 19.1 deaths per 100,000 women (171 deaths). Among health care professions as a whole, including those with jobs such as doctors and nurses, only men had higher rates of death involving COVID-19 (30.4 deaths per 100,000 men or 130 deaths) when compared with the rate among those whose death involved

COVID-19 of the same age and sex in the general population; of the specific health care professions, nurses had elevated rates among both sexes (50.4 deaths per 100,000 men or 31 deaths; 15.3 deaths per 100,000 women or 70 deaths). Cllr Ian Hudspeth, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: “These truly shocking statistics are another tragic reminder about the essential need for our vital social care workforce to be fully protected and equipped to look after themselves, as well as all the people of all ages they are supporting, and helping to keep safe and well. “People working in social care, including care workers, are on the frontline against this deadly disease and continue to put themselves at risk in order to care for those who need their help and support. “All those working in social care have to receive everything they need, including reliable and consistent supplies of quality PPE, to protect them and the people they care for from this terrible pandemic.” Suzie Bailey, director of leadership and organisational development at health thinktank the King’s Fund, said: “Hard-working care staff have been on the frontline in this crisis, but have been let down by government promises of support that have not been delivered. It is increasingly clear that social care has been neglected during the pandemic, with disastrous consequences. “Lessons must be learned. The virus still poses a very real threat and care workers need to be prioritised and protected. Social care must never again be treated as an afterthought to the NHS, but as an equal partner in an interdependent system.”

Novellini launch BeSafe walls to help the UK return to work safely

Shortage of Care Workers - Care England Addresses MAC The care sector potentially facing challenges new immigration rules following Brexit, Care England has submitted evidence to the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says: “Recruitment and retention of staff are of paramount importance to providers of adult social care. Any future immigration system must take into account the realities of the adult social care sector including the valuable contribution of overseas nationals in providing care to some of society’s most vulnerable”. Care England has made its submission to the Migration Advisory Committee’s call for evidence asking business organisations and employers to share their valuable recruitment experiences as part of a review of the shortage occupation lists. The responses will support the evidence based recommendations to be put to the Home Secretary in September 2020. The shortage occupation list is a government compiled list

of occupations for which the evidence suggests there are not enough UK workers to fill vacancies. Whilst Skills for Care’s 2019 workforce data stated that 17% of the adult social care sector’s employees were non-British nationals. In particular, 8% of the workforce according to this same data set were stated as being EU nationals. In light of the end of freedom of movement in 2021 as a result of the United Kingdom’s departure from the EU, the Government must consider the impact of such processes upon the adult social care sector. This is accentuated when one considers the longer-term demographic trends towards an older population. However, it is also of fundamental importance to ensure the attractiveness of adult social care for British nationals. Care England therefore supports the DHSCs’ adult social care recruitment campaigns, however, such campaigns must be backed up by more sustainable levels of funding and higher levels of fees for the sector. Martin Green continues: “Staff are our most precious resource and we need help to ensure that we have the systems in place to recruit and retain sufficient numbers to look after those in our care. Government must consider the additional pressures which COVID-19 has placed upon the adult social care workforce, but also, the sector as a whole. In turn, the Government must be mindful of this further shaping the United Kingdom’s future immigration systems"

Two Kew Care Group Care Homes Now Rated Outstanding By CQC The Manor Cottage Care Home, Frenchay, Bristol, has been rated OUTSTANDING! Kew Care Group, the second home within the group to be rated outstanding. The tightly knit family run operation which prides itself on high level service and dedicated person-centred care so Cleeve Lodge, in Downend, Bristol, rated Outstanding in 2019 and now The Manor Cottage shares this accolade. Other homes within the group Green Willow in West Sussex and Westbourne in Gloucester are both Good rated services the group are aiming to continue working and share best practice and aim to join their sister homes in achieve the top rating. Regular Manager Away Days, team work with Residents and an open and transparent learning culture mean that this little group can provide a very special service. Director at Kew Care Group Josie Dalli said : “We are delighted that the hard work, enthusiasm and kindness of the whole staff team at The Manor Cottage, is now being recognised with it’s Outstanding rating making it among the top 3.7% of all homes. Our residents made a video to celebrate and this adds to their regular vlog on life in a care home – all available on our Facebook page. As our residents said in their video ‘We are Outstanding – but we knew that already”!

Workplaces around the nation are preparing for when the UK can return to a kind of normality. The Novellini Group presents a solution that will help to create safe working environments that are hygienic and adaptable. The BeSafe wall is a protective device that companies with any office, desk space, trade counters, and food service areas can incorporate going forward. The primary benefit? Hygiene. Employees will feel protected with the BeSafe wall as it provides a barrier. Constructed from 6mm tempered glass, it’s easy to clean with any alcoholic disinfectant. In smaller spaces where it’s difficult to sit two meters away, the wall is a particularly helpful solution. Office teams aren’t the only ones who will be happy to see these walls put in place. BeSafe is a smart answer for all industries where contact with the public is required, such as pharmacies, retail counters, restaurants and public offices. Novellini can customise each barrier to suit the space with three versions (floor mounted, trade counter, and desks) and five different sizes. UK Sales Manager at Novellini, Stuart West says ‘We are looking to help the UK workforce where we can and these are a positive answer to those concerns about health and hygiene.’ As specialists in showers and design, Novellini are putting their skills to good use and many businesses across the UK will be pleased to find a safe and stylish solution. They are even available in several colours and glass finishes to suit the surroundings.

For more information contact Novellini UK on 01727 229922 or visit the website at For brochure and advice please email For large projects or orders, customized solutions can be evaluated. We are available to evaluate and propose BeSafe Wall solutions specific for your protection needs.


Managing Health and Safety of Staff in Care Homes

By Debbie Coyne, Employment Law Senior Associate at Aaron & Partners


These unprecedented times have created new and complex challenges for care homes. As key workers, care home staff must go into the workplace to carry out their jobs and protect extremely vulnerable people. The government announced last week it is putting a £600 million package in place to support care homes and to tackle the rate of infection. However, employers still have a duty to protect the health and safety of employees and consider the employment rights of employees carefully.

Government guidance on PPE for the care sector continues to reinforce that those most at risk within the UK are professionals working in health and social care sectors. Infection control measures and PPE should continue to be used and processes carefully followed. Full PPE (disposable gloves, disposable plastic apron, fluid-resistant surgical mask and eye protection where appropriate) is necessary when providing personal care which requires the employee to be in direct contact with residents or within 2m of someone who is coughing. Note that PPE is only effective when combined with hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene and avoiding touching your face. Guidance advises to use a surgical mask when working within 2m of residents but without direct contact or when in communal areas.



The usual obligations on employers to protect the safety of works continue to apply:

• Section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 imposes a duty on an employer “to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all his employees”. Companies and directors face criminal prosecution if they fail to do so. • The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 sets out specific requirements for Risk Assessments and again carries the risk of criminal prosecution. • Employers also have a general common law duty to protect employees’ safety. Under section 44 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 employees who refuse to work may be protected from detrimental treatment/dismissal. • It is currently not clear if employees must be paid if they refuse to work on health and safety grounds. This has not yet been tested, but depending on the circumstances, it may be more commercially viable to treat it as unpaid leave and run the risk of claims for unpaid wages. • Employers could face civil negligence claims for Personal Injury from employees who contract the virus at work. Employers must continue to follow all normal health and safety procedures, including appointing a competent person to manage health and safety, carrying out, updating and actioning risk assessments, training staff and displaying health and safety information.

Many in the care sector are working flat out to protect the vulnerable. Employees can work more hours to cover staff shortages, but the Working Time Regulations 1998 still apply. This means: - There is a 48 hour a week limit, unless employees have opted out. The 48 hours is averaged over 26 weeks for residential settings, so excess hours worked should be monitored to ensure there is no breach of the regulations. - Employees require a minimum 11 hour rest period between shifts. This can be taken in lieu if the employee is changing shift pattern. - Employees require a 24 hour rest period each week, or 48 hours every fortnight. - Employees require 20 minutes’ break, away from their workstation every 6 hours. Given most care homes are busier than ever, furloughing employees is unlikely to be beneficial. However, consideration may be given to furloughing staff that have difficulties with caring responsibilities.


Government and PHE advice is that anyone who displays symptoms of a high fever or a new persistent cough should stay home and self-isolate for 7 days. Anyone who lives with someone with these symptoms should also self-isolate for 14 days. Anyone self-isolating due to COVID-19 is entitled to receive statutory sick pay from day one, due to emergency changes in the law. Government guidance indicates that employers could agree to furlough someone who is selfisolating instead to protect the employers’ cash flow and provide greater financial support to the worker.

UK Care Homes Face National Bed Crisis The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for investment and innovation in the UK healthcare property sector, with long-term demand due to an ageing population combined with the accelerated closure of underperforming assets leading to a national bed crisis in care homes, according to the latest research from global property adviser Knight Frank. Knight Frank’s research identifies a potential 6,500 care homes at risk of closure over the next 5 years, equating to 140,000 beds. This shortage will be exacerbated by the increased demand for care homes by 2050, which will see a national bed crisis in the UK as the share of people over the age of 80 is expected to surge over the next 30 years, with one in ten adults set to be over 80 by 2050, compared to one in twenty currently. Estimating that the UK requires in excess of £15 billion to upgrade existing beds in order to future-proof for the ageing population, Knight Frank states that the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated trends that will lead to closures of care homes that are no longer fit for purpose, resulting in a significant national shortfall of bed provision.

Furthermore, the UK ranks lower than other advanced European economies for its bed provision, behind Belgium, the Netherlands, France and Germany, with only 13,000 elderly care beds per 100,000 people over 80. Belgium and the Netherlands have a significantly higher proportion at over 25,000 elderly care beds per 100,000 people over 80. Julian Evans, Head of Healthcare at Knight Frank, said: “Whilst the Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the outstanding collaboration between the private sector, social care sector and NHS at this time of need and the strength in controlling infection levels, it has also unfortunately highlighted the lack of investment by successive governments into the UK’s healthcare sector, and therefore the urgent need to prioritise preventative and crisis funding. "At present, there is not enough care bed capacity and there is a structural under-provision of beds in the social care sector. The pandemic has accelerated trends to scrutinise those buildings that are not fit for purpose whilst emphasising the insufficient funding available for reinvestment into existing care homes, which has therefore expedited the number of potential care home closures. This will result in a national bed crisis unless significant inward investment in the UK care home sector is taken. Our research shows that 6,500 care homes are at risk of closure currently, which is before we take into account that the peak of demand will contin-

ue to 2050 as our population continues to age. “Once the situation resolves around the Covid-19 pandemic, we will see a number of changes around how operators fare and we expect that with the scarcity of stock and a continuing ageing population driving demand, the investment appetite for care home developments will remain strong. There will undoubtedly be a flight to quality as investors seek defensive healthcare assets and we anticipate that investment into the sector will be robust, from a broad church of domestic and overseas investors.” The Covid-19 pandemic has placed additional pressures on the care home market which had already seen closures due to a range of factors including the continued impact of the National Living Wage affecting an already constrained labour market and ongoing staffing challenges, with an acute shortage of qualified nurses, combined with restrained care home development owing to building material inflation costs. Knight Frank expects that care home design will adapt to meet future virus experience and that care homes will need to innovate their operational procedures post Covid-19, including an increased use of telemedicine. It expects that there will be an accelerated closure of tertiary assets whilst due to increased smart specifications necessary for future new build care homes, the cost of raw materials will further increase.

How Digital Technology During COVID-19 Can Help Care Homes Bolster Residents’ Safety & Protection

By Chris Barker, CEO, Spirit Health Group

COVID-19 has – for the vast majority of us – been the most disruptive event of our collective lives. And for those most vulnerable, and their amilies, probably the most troubling.

While so far we have seen great examples of digital technologies being used to provide support, comfort, safety and protection, digital health is now being called upon to take clinical care beyond what has been previously achieved. With care homes across the UK understandably trying to do everything they can to shield their residents – including keeping carers on the care home site, reducing contacts and avoiding external visitors from coming in that might put the frail elderly at risk – the one thing they can’t afford to do is to compromise access to healthcare professionals and timely clinical intervention. As such, amidst ongoing concern over care home residents’ health, NHS England and NHS Improvement have issued guidance calling for immediate steps to implement a clinical service model for care home support during COVID-19. The model includes a weekly ‘check in’ to review patients identified as a clinical priority for assessment and care; appropriate and consistent medical oversight from a GP; and more frequent contact with care homes where needs are identified.

Remote monitoring is emphasised as key to the support model within the guidance. Digital, remote monitoring healthcare technology allows care home residents to be appropriately assessed on a regular basis. Assessments are done by carers or nurses taking patients’ vital signs readings and answering simple, straightforward questions that are clinically validated, supported by sophisticated algorithms to give a risk assessment to the clinical teams often GPs - responsible for the day to day care of these vulnerable individuals. By connecting carers with their patients’ responsible GPs, it presents a tangible opportunity for care home staff to care even more holistically and more consistently for their residents. Significantly, by regularly and consistently monitoring care home residents, this technology allows GPs to triage their patients and know when to intervene. Usually, when a care home contacts a resident’s GP, they are seeking a face-to-face visit at the earliest opportunity. Extending the concept of the care home to one akin to a ‘virtual ward’, GPs get clinical information

on their patients quicker and faster than they would do in that traditional setting which allows them to rapidly assess a patient, and better balance the dual aspects of risk management and time management. Doing ward rounds virtually also allows clinical teams to respond as quickly as possible – often via video conferencing in real-time. Moreover, having immediate access to a dashboard of live clinical data on a group of patients enables rapid identification and triage of those individuals most at risk. This proactive model of care allows for early intervention that helps keep people out of hospital, increases health system capacity and reduces the risk of cross contamination at a time when our collective focus is on protecting our vulnerable and our NHS. While it remains uncertain how long we may be in lockdown – complete or partial – one thing is certain: the innovation we unlock today will inspire a new future. As we collectively find new ways to provide brilliant products, services and care, the progress we make won’t stop when life returns to normal.

Sunrise of Sonning Care Home Surprises Staff With Personalised Cakes Sunrise of Sonning have surprised their team members with personalised cakes to celebrate Carers Week. The care home normally celebrates the annual awareness week through holding a raffle draw where every team member has the opportunity to win gifts. But this year, Sunrise of Sonning made 140 personalised cakes for them instead. The care home also made cakes for those team members who have been unable to come to work. Carmela Magbitang, General Manager of Sunrise of Sonning, then personally delivered these cakes to their much-missed staff. Carmela Magbitang, said: “I was contemplating how I could make everyone happy, so I came up with the idea of extending our gratitude to the families of our team members. For me, the families of our staff play a vital role in maintaining the wellbeing and sanity of our team members. Cakes were suggested as a way for our team members to share a gift with their whole families. “I also believe that those who have been isolating or who have been unable to come to work for whatever reason, definitely miss us here at Sunrise. I wanted to let them know that they haven’t been forgotten as they are still members of the team. Therefore, I delivered their cakes to their doorstep to remind them that

their Sunrise family missed them too and that we are waiting for their return.” Speaking of when she received the cake, Sunrise of Sonning team member, Nathalie McLeish, said: “Being at home for three months sounds like a dream. However, the reality is it’s very tough. Knowing that because your family is shielding you cannot do the job you love and support your wonderful colleagues through this tough time, leaves a lot of guilt. “To know that, considering everything that is happening and how tirelessly everyone is working, they are still thinking about you and appreciate you, cannot be described in words. The cake is delicious and I’m sure won’t last long, but the gesture will never be forgotten.” Habiba Gara, another team member of Sunrise of Sonning, said: “I was expecting it to be an ordinary day, but then I was visited by my lovely manager. I didn’t know what to expect from the visit but I was still happy to see her. “I saw something in her hand and it was a cake, a delicious vanilla cake with strawberry. I loved it more than my kids did but that message made my day. It was so cute and heart-warming to read it, knowing I wasn’t forgotten. I was so, so happy and thankful.”


What Steps Can Care Homes in Financial Difficulty Take? Despite receiving very little guidance from social care regulators and the government, care homes have been doing the best they can to protect their vulnerable patients from an unprecedented global pandemic. But behind the headlines, many care homes are facing another struggle. Care homes that were debtridden before the crisis are now teetering on the edge of collapse. With occupancy rates falling, staffing costs going through the roof and the cost of personal protective equipment (PPE) to contend with, what can care homes do to survive?

WHAT GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE IS AVAILABLE? 1. Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is of limited use to a sector where more workers are needed, not less. The cost of paying for the extra staff required to cover self-isolating workers is one of the factors that’s pushing many care homes into deep financial hardship. However, the scheme, that sees the government pay 80 percent of the salaries of employees on temporary leave up to a cap of £2,500 a month, can be of some use for non-essential workers. The scheme has recently been extended until October 2020. To use the scheme, you have to designate employees as furloughed workers and continue to make wage payments as normal and wait to be reimbursed by HMRC.

Claim for wage costs through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme at

2. Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme If your care home needs short-term cash-flow support to stay afloat, the Coronavirus Business Loan Scheme can provide loan facilities up to £5 million available on repayment terms of up to six years. The cost of interest and fees will be covered by the government for the first 12 months. Under the scheme, the lender cannot ask for a personal guarantee on any loan under £250,000. As well as term loans, the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme can give you access to: • Overdrafts • Asset finance facilities • Invoice finance facilities (only available on business-to-business invoices) Check the British Business Bank criteria to see if you’re eligible at

3. Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme The scheme, which launches on 26 May, will allow care homes with fewer than 250 employees to recover the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) payments they have made for coronavirus-related sick leave. Care homes that pay more than the current rate of SSP to current and former employees can only claim the rate amount for periods of coronavirus-related sickness starting on or after 13 March. Check if you’re eligible at

4. VAT Payment Deferral All VAT-registered UK businesses that have a VAT payment due between 20 March and 20 June 2020 can choose to defer the payment to a

later date. This can be an effective way to protect cash-flow at a time when occupancy rates are falling. You do not need to tell HMRC that you’re deferring your VAT payment. Payment must be made on or before 31 March 2021. Find out how to defer your VAT payment at

WHAT ELSE CAN YOU DO? Negotiate with landlords, mortgage providers and suppliers If you’re struggling to make commercial rental or mortgage repayments, you should talk to your lender or landlord immediately. Doing so before payments are missed or penalties are applied will give you the greatest chance of negotiating a grace period.

Ask for more time to pay tax debts If you’re struggling to pay your tax bill, HMRC may be willing to give you more time to make VAT, PAYE and Corporation Tax payments. Arrangements are made on a case-by-case basis, but HMRC will typically allow you to pay outstanding debts in instalments over a period of up to 12 months. Call HMRC’s dedicated Time to Pay team on 0800 024 1222.

Consider alternative funding options If your care home is not eligible for the government’s Coronavirus Business Loan Interruption Scheme or the facility does not provide the type of financial assistance you need, there may be alternatives. Asset-based lending can provide urgent funding in some circumstances and free up the cash needed to run your care home from day-to-day.

Author: Mike Smith is a director of Company Debt (, a firm that provides debt advice and rescue services for small and medium-sized businesses.

Secondary Trauma Recognition For Key Workers “Essential” Employers must be conscious of and understand the indicators of ‘secondary trauma’ and ensure those who have experienced distressing circumstances are offered support, the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health has said, and has called for the closer safeguarding of key workers psychological health as a result of coronavirus related secondary trauma. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, key workers including Healthcare professionals have been working on the front lines to treat and care for patients who have or may have been exposed to the coronavirus. Whilst healthcare workers, in particular, have had to manage critical issues daily, such as lack of hospital facilities, personal protection measures and exhausting working hours, IOSH has called for the closer safeguarding of key workers psychological health as a result of Covid-19 related secondary trauma. Secondary Trauma (STS) is the technical term for when an individual has been exposed to difficult or disturbing images or events, whether it be directly or indirectly. This can occur by coming into contact with material that has negatively impacted your wellbeing. Whilst occupational secondary trauma is not a new concept with journalists, police officers and crime scene investigators being the professionals most likely to suffer from symptoms of secondary trauma, the safeguarding of key workers globally during and as we move into the recovery stage of this pandemic is essential.

Bev Messinger, chief executive at IOSH, said: “We believe it is essential to protect workers’ physical and mental health during the Covid-19 pandemic. Healthcare workers and others on the frontline must have adequate mental health support and return-to-work processes throughout these challenging times. Many workers are also working from home and may begin to experience a range of emotions including a loss of control, boredom, frustration and loneliness, therefore occupational safety and health professionals have important roles in helping organisations and governments manage well-being risks during this pandemic. Due to the nature of this trauma often occurring indirectly recognising the symptoms of secondary trauma can be difficult and often go unrecognised by the individual and their peers for long periods of time. The symptoms of secondary trauma can be broken into three sections: Physical warning signs, Behavioural signs and either emotional or psychological signs. Whilst the list of these symptoms is extensive it is important to remember that they are a signpost to what individuals may be experiencing and is not a checklist to assess the extent of someone’s negative experiences. Physical symptoms, for example, can include exhaustion, insomnia, and headaches, whilst emotional or psychological signs can range from an impaired appetite and increased anxiety to negative or suicidal thoughts.

HMRC VAT Case Highlights Challenges Facing Specialist Healthcare Providers, says Accountants Hillier Hopkins A VAT tribunal decision against HMRC highlights the challenges specialist health providers face in the daily treatment of VAT. The tribunal decision, which in this instance went against HMRC, will be of particular interest to pregnancy clinics, occupational health, daycare, and patient transport providers, says accountants Hillier Hopkins. Ruth Corkin, A VAT Director at Hillier Hopkins and member of the VAT Practitioners Group advising Government and HMRC on VAT matters explains. “The tribunal case was brought by Window to the Womb, a private 4D pregnancy scanning clinic that provides gender and foetal heath scanning

together with pictures of unborn children for expecting mums and dads. “HMRC did not consider Window to the Womb to be a healthcare provider, meaning that it had to charge its customers VAT on the services it provides. Window to the Womb disagreed and took the case to Tribunal. “The case hinged on whether there was a provision of care by a registered healthcare professional. If so, it would be exempt from VAT. If not, Window to the Womb products would be considered what HMRC calls general supplies with VAT charged at 20%. “HMRC has long argued that sonographers are not on the list of medical professionals so cannot provide care that is exempt. However, most sonographers are also registered radiographers and sonography is, by its definition, a form of radiography. Window to the Womb and other clinics are also regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).” The decision has significant implications for all pregnancy scanning clinics and highlights the challenges specialist healthcare service providers face with regards HMRC and VAT, as Ruth explains. “Patient transport providers, for example, face the difference between

VAT being zero-rated and exempt, depending on whether HMRC believes them to be providing passenger or patient transport services. It is complex, as patient transport providers tend to offer both services. “Occupational health providers, such as those companies made available to their staff, are seen by HMRC as simply providing advice with VAT chargeable. Yet may occupational health specialists are qualified healthcare professionals who offer traditional medical procedures, for example, blood pressure tests. Services should, therefore, be exempt. “The provision of daycare in nursing and rest homes is often outsourced to specialist providers, yet HMRC considered those providers separate and unrelated to healthcare for VAT. Daycare providers and their customers quite naturally disagree, leading to often protracted discussions and tribunal cases. “VAT is complex at the best of times. It becomes even more so when there is the provision of specialist care. Specialist care providers should seek support and advice from an accountant that has a deep understanding of the sector and issues at hand.”

91-Year-Old Care Home Tenant Walks 14km to Raise Funds for Keyworkers A 91-year old tenant of Surrey-based Belvedere House, the maritime care home of The Royal Alfred Seafarers’ Society, has raised £5,000 for the home’s keyworkers by walking laps of the grounds for 30 days. Inspired by Captain Tom, John Eiffes wanted to recognise the 100 hardworking keyworkers that make up the Royal Alfred workforce – including nurses, care workers, cleaners, kitchen and maintenance staff –for the around-the-clock care they have provided throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Walking 365 metres each day during his sponsored walk of 13,950km, John raised a total of £5,000 in donations. The money raised will buy each staff member a £50 voucher to thank the hard work of the staff during the pandemic. The Society, which delivers expert care to former seafarers and their dependants, including those living with dementia, is a registered charity and was first established in 1865. John Eiffes said of his charitable efforts: “I have been living at this home for 10 months and, from day one, the care and compassion I have received from every member of staff has been exceptional. All the tenants and residents really appreciate everything the Belvedere House staff do for us and we would have been lost without them during this very worrying

time. “I wanted to show our immense gratitude to the wonderful team and getting out to fundraise was the least I could do for the people that give so much to us every day.” Commander Brian Boxall-Hunt, CEO at The Royal Alfred Seafarers’ Society, said: “On behalf of the Society and all of our staff, we would like to say a big thank you to our tenant John who has selflessly raised funds as a token of gratitude to the Royal Alfred workforce that keep the home running each day. A very special thank you to each and every member of our team who, during the pandemic, have sacrificed spending time with their own families to take care of our residents here at Belvedere House. “It is our keyworkers that have kept the country together in times of such distress so I’d also like to say thank you to all keyworkers including NHS frontline staff, our emergency services, supermarket workers, farmers, transport operators and teachers. In the battle against the virus, we have come together to take care of one another and I am very proud of all of our keyworker staff at the Royal Alfred, and of those across the country, we owe you all our thanks and appreciation.” To find out more about the work of The Royal Alfred Seafarers’ Society visit the charity’s website. To keep up to date with the latest news from the Society, follow and like the official Society Twitter (@RAseafarers) and Facebook pages.


Thousands to Be Offered Repeat Testing in Care Homes as Part Of New Surveillance Study

Approximately 10,000 people in care homes will be given repeat testing as part of a new Government study into coronavirus to understand more about its spread in these settings. The study will take place across over 100 care homes in England with swab tests (known as a PCR test to test if a person currently has the virus) and blood (antibody) tests for all consenting staff and residents over the next year. This will provide reassurance for those living and working in care homes and allow them to react quickly to outbreaks It forms part of Pillar 4 of the Government’s COVID-19 testing strategy to conduct UK-wide surveillance testing to learn more about the spread of the virus. Minister for Care Helen Whately said: “We know care homes are on the frontline of our fight against coronavirus, with the virus affecting older people more acutely than the general population. Not only will this study provide important reassurance to thousands of residents and staff, it will also build our understanding of the rate of infection in care homes and add to our knowledge about the risk factors that mean the virus can affect individuals differently. “The results of this study will help inform our future plans for managing the pandemic, to protect the public and those who receive care as we work to carefully return to normality.”

The first blood samples took place on Thursday 11 June. This information will help inform future Government strategy on the ongoing response to the virus, including lockdown and social distancing measures. The first results from initial participants are expected to be available in July. The research, carried out in collaboration with DHSC, UCL and NHS Data Foundry, will draw on results from whole care home testing and previous studies to build a more comprehensive picture of how outbreaks play out over time within the same home. Dr Laura Shallcross of UCL Institute of Health Informatics said: “This study will provide unique insights into the proportion of care home staff and residents who have already been infected with COVID-19, and the proportion with an antibody response. We will also collect detailed information from care homes to try and understand why some care homes have had outbreaks and others have not. Taken together, this information will be used to inform the pandemic response in care homes, and protect residents and staff from becoming infected with COVID-19 in the future.” Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive, Care England “Care homes are the front line and this opportunity is welcome. This study is absolutely critical if we are to win the battle against COVID-19. There is still so much to learn about this virus; why some care homes have tested positive whilst displaying no symptoms or deaths and others have felt the full force of the brutality of this silent killer. The Government’s study will help us understand the way in which this virus operates thus enabling us to be better prepared today, tomorrow and in the future ”. On top of this surveillance research in care homes, the Government has extended whole care home testing to all adult care homes after meeting the target of offering a test to every care home for over-65s and those with dementia in England by 6 June. Since the launch of whole care home testing, the Government has provided test kits to over 12,000 care homes, and are now able to send out and process over 50,000 test kits a day.

65th Wedding Anniversary Celebration at Stockport Care Home HC One’s Appleton Manor Resident Billy celebrated his 65th wedding anniversary with this wife Doreen today. Wellbeing Coordinator, Sarah, wanted to make sure this day was as special as possible, even with lockdown meaning they were unable to give each other a hug. Prior to the day, Sarah helped Billy create a card to give to Doreen, along with a framed photograph of some of Billy’s special memories of him and his wife over the years. Billy said “Doreen will love the framed photos.” Billy’s wife Doreen came to see Billy through the window so they could cele-

brate their special day together. Doreen brought gifts for Billy and was overwhelmed to receive hers from him too, it was a very touching moment. Billy’s wife Doreen said “I was overwhelmed by the kindness from the home and all the staff.” The team at Appleton Manor gave Billy and Doreen a card and bunch of flowers to congratulate them on 65 happy years spent together. Wellbeing coordinator Sarah commented “This was a very emotional day, being able to be a part of it was so special.” Sarah has also now put together a photo album of the pictures taken on their wedding anniversary, so Billy and Doreen will have even more memories to look back on together when they can finally reunite properly.

Caring Homes First Wellbeing Day Success The first Caring Homes Wellbeing Day took place on Friday with all 69 homes taking part in the run up to World Wellbeing Week. During the Covid-19 Pandemic Caring Homes has designed and implemented a unique wellbeing response to the virus with several projects and initiatives underway to support residents’ wellbeing. Extra support has also been given to colleagues with the launch of a wellbeing app and weekly newsletter offering to support to those who may want it. The aim of the Wellbeing Day – Wear Something White for Wellbeing, was to encourage residents and colleagues to take part in activities together and to talk about mental and physical wellbeing. Project Support Manager Melissa Jeffery explained, “The aim of the day was to raise awareness for both staff and residents physical and mental wellbeing and I was delighted that all homes took part. The aim was for every home to be able to personalise the day and make it their own, so some took part just in a small way, others with something much bigger. “In addition to wearing something white we encouraged homes to use old white an T-shirt or napkin and get involved by painting rainbows on these items to support and raise awareness for all those working in the frontline against Covid-19. We had rainbow banners produced at homes as well as one where the residents painted the team – who were wearing white T-shirts.” During the Covid-19 outbreak the rainbow has become a key symbol, including for a national campaign where rainbows have appeared in home and shop windows to show support and just to cheer people up who may see them from outside. The rainbow is a symbol of hope and positivity, after all you can’t have a rainbow without the rain. Other activities across the homes on Caring Homes Wellbeing Day included picnics, barbecues, afternoon tea, discussions on themes of peace, happiness and friendship, mindfulness breathing exercises, a ‘White, white wedding’ event and an Abba themed day. “Everyone involved in planning our Wellbeing Day is delighted with how it went, a real success,” said Melissa. “We now plan to make it an annual event.”


Safeguarding Your Services During the COVID-19 Crisis By Lionel Stride, barrister in the clinical negligence team at Temple Garden Chambers (with assistance from Philip Matthews, paralegal)

Care homes are still very much under the spotlight where the Coronavirus pandemic is concerned. Just this week, 24 people have died in a Durham care home in one of the worst known outbreaks of the pandemic so far. There have been almost 15,000 deaths reported in UK care homes from Covid-19, with a third of all deaths occurring in care settings, according to data from the Office for National Statistics. With such pressure on the care industry, it is inevitable that mistakes will be made, which in turn potentially exposes care homes to negligence claims. It is clear from some of the specific provisions that have been included in the Coronavirus Act 2020 that the Government anticipated such exposure. In Section 11, the health secretary granted permission to provide indemnity for any clinical negligence liabilities that emerge from NHS activities as a result of attempts to tackle the virus. This indemnity provision is in place to provide a safety net to the NHS where negligence arising from the provision of such services is not already covered under a pre-existing indemnity arrangement. An example is provided in Section 11; this stipulates that, should a resident of a care home need to be admitted to a hospital already at capacity, the care home may be asked to provide nursing care to the resident. The care home might find that its insurance does not cover this type of situation but that they are likely still to be indemnified by the government because they would be providing care and treatment that would usually be covered by an NHS hospital, as a direct result of the pandemic. Care home staff and management need to be aware of the unique clini-

cal challenges that the Coronavirus pandemic presents in order to safeguard their service from users and staff as effectively as possible. This will mean that thorough risk assessments will need to be undertaken and regularly updated, with effective measures implemented to minimise the risk posed from the virus. In this respect, one of the obvious difficulties has been diagnosis: for a long time, testing for the virus was restricted to patients in hospital with clear flu-like symptoms. This has no doubt led to greater rates of injection because individuals can present with different clinical signs of the virus and the level of severity can vary drastically. This leads to increased risk of missing a diagnosis where a patient has developed severe complications, having initially presented with mild symptoms. It was not until testing was eventually expanded to all care home residents and staff in England – including those with and without symptoms – that care home management was better able to track and contain the spread of Coronavirus. This expansion of testing was far from a panacea, however; questions remain as to the efficiency of the current testing. Nevertheless, failure to ensure that there is effective screening of staff and patients, leading to a cluster of cases in certain care homes, may not only give rise to civil but also criminal liability if the care home is in breach of its health and safety obligation (analysis of which is beyond the scope of this article but here is a link to the TGC Health & Safety Podcast addressing these issues: Care homes could face civil liability if there is evidence that Covid-19 entered a care as a result of processes not properly being followed. Such circumstances will require investigation into the systems that the management of the care home established to contain the virus and minimise the spread of infection; this will include review of the risk assessment and whether mitigation measures were effectively implemented – i.e., looking into whether staff had access to PPE, whether sanitiser was available to use, whether social distancing measures were implemented, and whether staff were able to self-isolate once they suspected they may have the virus. It is important to note that the standard of care required, even in these exceptional times, remains unaltered (whether in claims for standard or medical negligence): see the case of Pope v NHS Commissioning Board (2015), which concerned the negligence of a nurse in the context of the swine flu outbreak. In this case, the patient fell unwell and believed she had contracted swine flu. She went to a health centre and, upon being

examined by an experienced nurse, was advised to go home and rest. The patient was admitted to A&E two days later and suffered a cardiac arrest. She was resuscitated but had sustained brain damage that left her profoundly disabled. It was later revealed that the patient had swine flu, and that this had been complicated by pneumonia. The patient subsequently pursued the NHS for medical negligence. At trial, the Court ruled that there had been a breach of duty and that this was causative of the claimant’s brain damage. National guidance stated that any flu-like illness was, at the time, to be managed as swine flu. Following this guidance meant that the nurse would have measured the patient’s blood saturation levels, found them to be low and would then have referred and admitted her to hospital. Had the patient been admitted, she would have avoided cardiac arrest because she would have received the necessary treatment. In this case, even though it considers the actions of an NHS nurse as opposed to a care home professional, the essential principles still apply. Whilst every case is fact specific, the Court will approach the issue of the standard of care as in the usual way: by examining the state of knowledge of the relevant profession at the material time and asking whether a reasonable body of professionals would have acted in the same way. It is worth bearing in mind that the extent of any strain on resources (particularly in the early stage of the virus) will impact on the analysis. However, now that the pandemic is under greater control, care homes (like al service providers), will need to demonstrate that they have kept up to date with all guidance and preventative measures. It is worth considering practical steps that care homes can be taking to remind all staff of the guidance that is in place; this might include sending emails out to staff and putting notices up on notice boards to remind everyone of the correct approach to be adopting during these trying times. Further, now that the pandemic is easing but the spectre of resurgence remains, it will be essential to put in place better preventative measures such as pre-entry screening of all patients; regular testing of staff and service users; limiting agency staff to working at a single care home; ensuring social distancing between service users; and regular cleaning of private and communal areas. There is no doubt that the care sector is currently under an enormous amount of pressure. We can however deduce from the Pope case that, even during times of crisis, there is relevant guidance that carers must do their best to follow in order to avoid potentially very damaging consequences.

Care Home Mobility Solution Wins £50k Grant to Fight Covid-19 Developers of a revolutionary personal electric vehicle which reduces exposure to viruses like Covid-19 have been awarded a government grant of £50,000. The Centaur is a two-wheeled, self-balancing machine for the elderly and disabled that fits into the space of a dining chair and has a seat which rises up to eye-level. It will eventually be rolled out into hospitals and care homes where it will eliminate the need for porters and safeguard patients and carers by limiting contact between them, stopping the spread of infections. The Centaur is made by Centaur Robotics, which has just launched its third investment phase, offering investors up to 23 per cent of the company in return for £1.5m. The personal electric vehicle will go into production later this year. Reduces transmission of virus About 8,600 companies entered the competition set by Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency. The competition was designed to encourage businesses to address issues surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. Care homes and hospitals using the Centaur will become more productive as less time will be spent pushing patients around. The Centaur also gives care home residents greater independence and is easy to clean, further reducing the chance of disease and virus transmission. Using revolutionary technology, the sleek and lightweight Centaur will challenge the way people think about mobility. It is operated via a small joystick on the armrest or a mobile phone app and will be built in the UK.

Low-profile, puncture-proof tyres, a tight turning circle and small footprint make small rooms and corridors easy to negotiate. The Centaur’s armrests drop down to enable it to slip under desks and tables. Exciting times Chris Hay, managing director of Centaur Robotics, said: “This is a real vote of confidence in our technology, our vision and our team. Future investors can see that we mean business and are on track. This is an exciting time for Centaur. “We are leading the way and we’re really pleased that our work has been recognised and rewarded by Innovate UK.” The £50,000 will be used to carry out further research into mobility within care homes and build a demonstrator based on those requirements. Improve lives, make impact The competition’s aim was to support the development of ambitious and innovative products and services which will help society or industry during and after the COVID19 pandemic. Innovate UK Executive Chair Dr Ian Campbell, said: “The ideas we have seen can truly make a significant impact on society, improve the lives of individuals, especially those in vulnerable groups and enable innovative businesses to prosper in challenging circumstances.” For more information visit

Inquests, Care Home Residents, and Medical Negligence: The Limits on the Application of the Positive Duty to Protect Life Under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights By Emma Price, barrister at 5 Essex Court ( AN ARTICLE 2 OR A NON-ARTICLE 2 INQUEST – WHY DOES IT MATTER?

Where there is an arguable breach of the state’s positive obligation to protect life under article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights in relation to a death, the coroner conducting the inquest is required to return an expanded conclusion on the record of inquest. An expanded conclusion answers not just the question of “how” but also “in what circumstances” the person died. The effect of an inquest being a broader article 2 inquest is that judgmental conclusions about failings that may have caused or contributed to the death can be recorded in the record of inquest. The evidence heard at the inquest, whilst not of itself admissible in civil proceedings, will often determine whether a civil claim for damages for breach of article 2 is pursued against the party said to have caused or contributed to the death.


The recent decision of the Court of Appeal in the case of R (Maguire) v HM Senior Coroner for Blackpool and Fylde [2020] EWCA Civ 738 addresses the question of whether the positive duty of the state to protect life under article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights is owed to a vulnerable care home resident whose liberty is restricted under a Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (“DoLS”) authorisation. Its conclusion? It might do, but only in limited circumstances.

Jacqueline Maguire (“JM”) was 52 when she died in hospital on 22 February 2017 of the effects of a perforated gastric ulcer. She had Down’s Syndrome, in addition to learning disabilities and behavioural difficulties, as well as some physical limitations. She had lived for more than 20 years in a residential care home. Her placement was paid for and supervised by the local council and she was the subject of a standard DoLS authorisation. JM became ill over the two days before her death. A range of criticisms were levelled at the care home, paramedics and an out of hours GP in respect of delay in JM being admitted to hospital.


The Court of Appeal did not accept that the vulnerability of an individual in JM’s position, coupled with the fact of a DoLS authorisation automatically

dictated that she was owed the article 2 duty to protect life. The article 2 duty is owed to vulnerable people under the care of the state for some purposes. A duty to protect from harm may exist where the type of harm is entirely within the control of those caring for the individual concerned. So Article 2 might be engaged in circumstances where appalling conditions in a residential care home led to the death of a vulnerable resident subject to a DoLS authorisation. The positive duty is not owed to a person in this situation for all purposes however; and a death which followed alleged failures or inadequate interventions by medical professionals would not generally engage article 2. JM was resident in a care home because she was unable to look after herself and it was not possible for her to live with her family; she was not there for medical treatment; and if she needed medical treatment it was sought, in the usual way, from the NHS.


NHS Figures suggest that about 200,000 applications are made for DoLS authorisations per year, about half of which are granted. In light of the significant number of deaths of care home residents in the course of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Court of Appeal’s decision is likely to be a significant one for the care sector. Absent any other factors, where medical help has been sought for a vulnerable resident subject to a DoLS authorisation through NHS 111 or via a GP, or through the emergency services and medical advice has been acted on, it is unlikely that article 2 will be engaged. Where however there are questions about the adequacy of preventative measures in respect of Covid-19 in a residential care home or medical help has not been sought when it should have been, the position may be different.


Supporting People with Dementia in Care Homes during COVID19 Rishi Jawaheer, Director of the Jawa Group of care homes in South London takes a look at some of the issues arising from COVID-19 that affect people with dementia, and what care home professionals can do to help. Here, he shares how he and his team of care workers have dealt with some of the more unexpected consequences of the virus. People who rely on care services need care no matter what is going on in the rest of the world. Providing that continuity of service and all the practical support that’s needed is our number one priority. But lock-down and coronavirus have got us all working in new ways. Here are some of the things we’ve been doing to overcome challenges. Use technology with care To protect residents, care homes have had to close their doors to visits from friends and relatives. This is a tough call to make, and one that has undoubtedly caused heartache for many. The natural instinct is to try to bridge the gap, keeping residents in touch with friends and relatives via video calls in place of face-to-face contact. For some, this has worked well, with the use of apps, but for others, particularly those with advanced dementia, we have noticed it can do more harm than good. Most of the people we support are from a generation when video calling wasn’t the norm, or even really imaginable. Older people with dementia are used to seeing photos or televisions, but seeing a moving image of a loved one can be extremely confusing and sometimes overwhelming. My advice is to use your judgement on a case by case basis. Using modern technology to keep in touch isn’t going to work for all. Of course, families want to know their loved one is ok, and they will benefit from being able to see them. To get around this, our team has found that one-way video calling (so families can see their loved ones, but residents don’t see their family) has worked really well. Shutting off from the outside world isn’t all bad

Our instinct as humans is to want freedom, the ability to go out and about, see and experience new things and be with others. However, for people living with dementia, change can be unsettling. In more ordinary times, we all need to be conscious that while the usual flow of visitors is welcome to some residents, it may be a confusing break from a normal routine for others. While we are forced to limit face-to-face social contact with people outside of care homes, it’s important to remind ourselves, and to reassure families, that residents have staff and fellow residents for company. They are not alone, and in fact, in many cases, residents may be calmer and more relaxed with this quiet, regular and uninterrupted routine. However, it is of course vital to ensure that people stay connected, that family and friends can get in touch and that anyone who might feel agitated by a lack of contact is able to access devices to communicate as they wish.

At the Jawa Group, our care workers are recognised as fundamental members of the team who keep the care home running. They are valued, respected and cared for at all times, never more so than now. Our care workers are unsung heroes. Right now, it’s important we do the little things to help them, as they are doing so much for us. We must do what we can for them to show them we appreciate and value them. We’ve taken simple measures like offering all our staff a meal every day and giving them food supplies to take home to their families. We’ve also cleared some rooms and made them available for staff to stay if they have a difficult journey to and from work. Do what you can for care workers in your home. Understand their individual needs and support them as best you can.


We have been very lucky in that COVID-19 has brought out the best in our local community. We’ve had great support from our local council and supermarkets, and local restaurants have even delivered food for our staff and residents. It’s important that we all do our bit in our communities, supporting in whatever way we can. It provides genuine support and also helps towards much-needed feeling of positivity and care. As some care homes are struggling to staff their kitchens, we are hosting a care home foodbank from our car park, for local care homes to come along and take away cakes, soup and other easily portable food for their residents. There are lots of practical matters that are taking our time and focus at the moment. Where we can, we should all consider the wellbeing of those in care homes, their families and all in the care community and do what we can to make this time a little more positive. There’s a lot we can do to support each other. Sharing best practices and remembering that we are all in this together is a great place to start.

Restricting the spread of infection and protecting care workers and residents is paramount during these times. Caring, by its nature, involves close contact and, as per Government guidelines, aprons, gloves and fluid-repellent surgical masks should be worn for activities that bring care workers into close personal contact with someone who has coronavirus symptoms. But we must remember seeing care workers wearing masks and other protective items isn’t normal for residents and can be unsettling. They may not recognise their care worker, or they may feel confused as to why care workers are wearing masks. A friendly smile is an important part of their daily interactions but we have to ensure people are kept safe above all else. We are keen to change talk of ‘social distancing’ to ‘physical distancing’ because now more than ever, we need social interaction. Staff across our homes are being reminded to only use masks when necessary. Of course, it’s important to maintain a sense of normality for our residents. When wearing masks is essential, our teams have taken to simple measures like making sure they tell people who they are when entering a room, and reminding residents about why they are having to wear PPE. Staff could pin a photo of themselves to their uniforms to help residents recognise who is behind the PPE, however it is vital that there are protocols and procedures in place to prevent spread of any infection and that these are being strictly followed.



Rishi Jawaheer is Director of Jawa Group Care Homes. Email: Twitter: @carevisionuk Web:

Nominations Open for The NACC Awards 2020

The National Association of Care Catering (NACC) has launched the NACC Awards 2020. The prestigious awards welcome nominations from across the care catering sector to recognise and celebrate teams and individuals that go

above and beyond in their field – from care homes to community services, such as Meals on Wheels and Lunch Clubs. The deadline for entries is Friday 3 July 2020 and the judges will be looking for examples of innovation, excellence and dedication that create tangible benefits for residents, clients and colleagues in the following categories: • Care Establishment of the Year Award, sponsored by Hobart • Meals on Wheels Award, sponsored by apetito • Catering Team of the Year Award, sponsored by Brakes • Catering Manager of the Year Award, sponsored by Unilever Food Solutions • Our Care Catering Hero Award, sponsored by Premier Foods The winners will be honoured later in the year* at a gala awards dinner where the recipients of the Pam Rhodes Outstanding Achievement Award, sponsored by Robot-Coupe and the National Chairman’s Award will also be revealed, as well as the hotly-contested NACC Region of the Year Award, sponsored by Meiko. The NACC Awards 2020 nomination brochure with full category details and entry requirements can be downloaded here. Sue Cawthray, National Chair of the NACC, comments: “Recognising excellence, innovation and dedication within care catering has always

been very important to the NACC, but in times of adversity and extraordinary challenges, such as we find ourselves in now, it’s all the more pertinent. “For a long time, the social care sector – be that in care homes or in the community – has been one of society’s unsung heroes. The Covid-19 crisis has highlighted the vital role of the sector and the incredible, selfless work of everyone within it, including care caterers. Up and down the country, care caterers go above and beyond to ensure those they care for receive the right nutrition and hydration in an appropriate and enjoyable way that generates a positive impact on both physical and mental wellbeing. Never has this been so important for the welfare of residents and peace of mind of their loved ones. “We very much look forward to coming together with members, colleagues and friends later in the year to celebrate the exceptional achievements within our sector and the teams and individuals that encapsulate the very best of the best. We know these are challenging times for our members, but we urge them to enter the NACC Awards 2020 and ensure the hard work and brilliance of their team members do not go unrecognised.” Entry to the NACC Awards is open to members of the NACC. For more information about how to become a member visit

Veterans’ Care Home Celebrates Care Home Staff in Mid Wales Heroism of D-Day Resident Rewarded for Their Hard Work Royal Star & Garter in High Wycombe has thrown a special D-Day party for one of its residents, who took part in the Normandy landings 76 years ago. Staff at the care home in Hughenden Avenue organised the tea party for George Avery on Saturday 6 June, on the anniversary of the D-Day landings. The 98-year-old, who is known to friends and family as Bunny, was a Sapper in the Royal Engineers and built Bailey bridges throughout Europe to help support the Allied advance into Nazi-occupied Europe. He was part of the second wave of British troops to land on Sword Beach on 6 June 1944. Bunny was dropped close to the shoreline by his landing craft, and as he made his way to the beach he “just kept running”. He remembers seeing bodies strewn on the sand and added: “I thought, ‘Keep your head down boy!’” In 2016 he was awarded France’s highest military honour – the Legion d’Honneur – as thanks from the French government for his role in its liberation. Today Bunny lives with dementia at the care home, which opened in 2019. Staff arranged the tea party, with other residents also joining Bunny, while observing social distancing precautions. Photos of Bunny in uniform helped decorate the Home, and residents ate a special cake with his image on it, listened to

music and danced. Receptionist Cerys Walters said: “Bunny and the rest of the residents had such a lovely time. It was a true honour for us all to be with Bunny on such a significant day.” Two years ago, Bunny visited Sword Beach on D-Day and posed for a photo taken exactly 74 years to the hour of his landing on the stretch of sand.

Nursing and residential home The Oaks in Newtown has taken part in a nationalNcampaign to highlight all the good work being done by care homes. The campaign, called ‘Feeding Heroes’, is being run by Care Home Life and aims to #PassOnSomeCheer to over 9,000 social care workers during lockdown. The motive behind the campaign is to shed a positive light on the fantastic work done by care home staff, and to lift the spirits of care workers by providing them with a thoughtful free lunch. Debbie Smith of Care Home Life said: “We’re committed to supporting care homes, care workers and their residents as best as we possibly can throughout this crisis.” The Oaks Care home in Newtown, Powys, which provides residential, nursing and dementia care, received 26 freshly pre-packed lunchboxes for its members of staff as a way of recognising their devotion to residents. Jennifer Roberts, Registered Manager of The Oaks, said her team were thrilled that the home took part in the initiative. She said: “We are so proud of our staff, who always go the extra mile for the residents here at The Oaks. The Feeding Heroes campaign is a lovely way of recognising the hard work and dedication of all our workers during this difficult time.”


Major Milestone Hit as Two Billion Items of PPE Delivered

Two billion items of PPE have been delivered to NHS and social care staff across the UK since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Government has announced today. Amid unprecedented global pressures on supply chains, 341 million masks, 313 million aprons, four million gowns and 1.1 billion gloves have been delivered to frontline workers thanks to the efforts of government, NHS, industry and the armed forces to massively scale up distribution networks. Almost 28 billion items of PPE have been ordered overall from UKbased manufacturers and international partners to provide a continuous supply in the coming months. This will help protect our hardworking NHS and care staff, allowing them to continue to save lives and provide high-quality care to those who need it. This was a vital condition in order to safely ease the lockdown and start to bring some normality back to people’s lives. Matt Hancock, Health and Social Care Secretary, said: “Coronavirus has placed unprecedented global demands on PPE supply

chains. To tackle this we set a national challenge calling on companies to channel their manufacturing power into manufacturing much-needed PPE, and brought in Lord Deighton who has truly delivered once more for his country. “Two billion items of PPE have now been delivered to the frontline, and a further 28 billion items sourced, that will protect frontline workers well into the future. “It is thanks to the herculean effort from UK industry, the NHS and departmental teams, our diplomatic teams abroad, and the armed forces that we have now hit this impressive milestone.” The normal supply chain for PPE was designed to accommodate delivery to 226 NHS Trusts, but essential PPE supplies are now being supplied to 58,000 different settings, including care homes, hospices and community care organisations. This has been achieved through a cross-Government effort to harness the manufacturing power of UK suppliers, forging new relationships with overseas companies and setting up new supply chains from scratch in a matter of weeks. Lord Deighton, the government’s advisor on PPE who previously led the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, was also appointed to oversee supply and ramp up manufacturing of PPE from UK-based companies. More than 30 deals have been struck with companies, including the Royal Mint, Jaguar Land Rover and Honeywell, through the Make initiative to manufacture and deliver PPE in the UK. We are also working with over 175 new suppliers to deliver at the scale and pace the UK requires. Around 20% of all PPE will be manufactured in the UK by the end of the year. The latest companies to join the national drive and sign new contracts are: • Medicom, a company based in Montreal, will be providing hundreds of millions of respiratory and medical masks to the UK every year, once the UK facility is opened later this summer. This new UK-based factory will create at least 75 new full time, skilled jobs. • Redwood, based in Wigan, will be providing 379,000 gowns until November

this year – around 75,800 a month – with the first delivery due this week. Lord Paul Deighton, adviser to the Health Secretary on PPE, said: “The driving motivation of our team has been to supply our frontline workers with the PPE they need so they can focus on saving lives. This is why hitting this milestone matters and why I am so grateful to all the individuals and companies, both in the UK and overseas, who have contributed to this effort. “Responding to a massive spike in our requirements and a significant global supply shortage, we have in a matter of weeks scaled up our international procurement, our domestic manufacturing and our logistics and distribution capabilities so that we can deliver PPE to where it’s needed. “We are now working to build the stock levels which will help to futureproof our health and care sectors for years to come.” Contracts for billions of items of PPE were negotiated by a team led by Defence Equipment and Support, the procurement arm of the Ministry of Defence. Sir Simon Bollom, Defence Equipment and Support CEO, said: “The New Buy PPE team has worked tirelessly and collaboratively with colleagues from the NHS and across government from the outset and this remarkable milestone indicates how focussed they are on getting vital PPE to the NHS front line.” Ranil Jayawardena, International Trade Minister, said: “The announcement today is testament to the hard work of British teams around the globe, sourcing critical medical equipment in the fight against coronavirus. “We’ve got to keep going and do even more. I welcome Lord Deighton’s important work on PPE here at home and abroad – and the Department of International Trade will continue our work to make our supply chains more robust, seize new overseas opportunities, and push on with trade deals amongst friends and allies to boost the British economy. “The Government will always be ready to fire up our overseas networks, secure medical and other critical supplies, and help make Britain more resilient in the future, as we strive to beat this virus.”

Campaign Targets Unlawful ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ Orders Issued During Covid-19 Crisis A checklist to support disabled people, families and care staff challenge illegal ‘do not resuscitate’ orders from doctors is published today (Thursday) as part of a campaign by Turning Point and Learning Disability England (LDE). The organisations say the document will help protect the rights of people with a learning disability if they become sick with coronavirus. It has been drawn up in response to a rise in GPs and hospital staff issuing ‘do not attempt cardiopulmonary resuscitation’ (DNACPR) forms without consulting patients or their families. A total of 22 orders received since April have been called into question by Turning Point who says this compares with three a month on average requiring challenge. Cases that Turning Point has challenged successfully include: • A man in his 50s with sight loss* who was incorrectly diagnosed with coronavirus after admission to hospital following a choking incident. Doctors discharged the patient – who had aspiration pneumonia but has since recovered fully – the next day with a DNACPR form on the basis of ‘blindness and severe learning disabilities’. • A man** whose quality of life would not be ‘worth it’ if he had to be resuscitated with CPR, according to a doctor. His father – a widower in his 80s living alone – says: “He (the doctor) rang me out of the blue. I’d never not

want to resuscitate him, I want him saving. I’ve been fighting for him all his life. He’s all I have and comes to see me almost every day.” Despite getting these and other decisions revoked, Turning Point and LDE – who between them and their members support or represent thousands of people UK-wide with a learning disability – say other disabled people may be denied potentially life-saving treatment. A recent survey by LDE of its members found that one in five (20%) of organisations had seen DNAPCRs placed in people’s medical records without consultation in March and April. Senior NHS officials and ministers have taken action to stop forms being issued widely. But unlawful orders are still being received by Turning Point and LDE. The aim of the checklist is to support disabled people, their families and carers to ask key questions, such as whether doctors told the patient about the decision to discharge them from hospital with a DNACPR. If not, the document advises them to get the clinician who authorised the order to provide details on why the decision was taken in the first place. Families who welcome the checklist include Marie-Anne Peters whose brother Alistair has epilepsy but no underlying health conditions. With the help of their local health commissioners and Turning Point, she and her

sister overturned a doctor’s order not to take Alistair to hospital if he fell ill with coronavirus. Marie-Anne, from West Yorkshire, said: “If the staff at his care home hadn’t alerted our local health commissioners or MP then who knows what could have happened. My brother has been fighting (for life) his whole life and keeps recovering. Why would we give up on him now?” Julie Bass, Chief Executive at Turning Point, said: “It is not only illegal but outrageous that a doctor would decide not to save someone just because they have a learning disability. They have the same right to life as anyone else. “We hope our campaign and the checklist will help support families and care staff in challenging these orders.” Scott Watkin, LDE Representative Body Co-chair, said: “Decisions on people’s treatment that are based on someone having a learning disability are never OK – even one is too many. “We’re pleased this guide has been made so people can understand their rights and speak up for themselves or their family member. It’s an important step in helping people challenge poor or illegal decisions. Enough is enough.”


As the pandemic crisis hits, with self-isolation and home working much greater, the digital revolution has, for most, future proofed “business as usual” But we know a large percentage of social care providers are not so lucky!

NOW MOR MORE RE THAN EVER THE USE OF DIGITAL DIGITAL TECHNOL NOLOGY IN SOCIAL CARE TECHNOLOGY CARE IS PRO PROVING VING IT ITS S WEIGHT IN GOLD GOLD.. The demands yyou Th ou are are no now w facing ar aree unprecedented; unprecedented; maintaining intaining levels l vels le ls of ccare are and a staff staff,, the safety and w d thosee yyou ou ccare are for is yyour rity. DIGITA AL wellbeing ellbeing of those who w work ork for yyou, ou, and ourr maximum priority priority. DIGITAL TECHNOL OGY CAN CAN MAKE THIS SO MUCH EASIER. SIER R. TECHNOLOGY EASIER Vital information all in one plac e, in the cloud, rremotely em motely ac cessible to eevery very member of staff who needs place, accessible it. There There is an urgent urgent rrequirement equirement to move move quickly are available available from from uickly ly to realise r opportunities that are the opportunities digital technology technology..

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HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL RCP Presents Practical Solutions During the Pandemic PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS


Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP) is a leading global provider of hygiene, cleaning, waste and safety equipment to multiple industries. During the pandemic, healthcare facilities have been frontline environments battling COVID-19. The everyday heroics of medical staff have been acknowledged globally. Governments have reacted differently, but their advice has been consistent: ensure regular hand hygiene, enhance cleaning and waste procedures and maintain social distancing.

Surfaces are a primary contamination point. In a healthcare facility, cleaning products need to perform well, wherever they are used, under whatever conditions. RCP’s cleaning products place adaptability at their core. Microfibre products embedded with zig-zag technology remove 99.9% of microbes with or without bleach and are available in multiple colours to prevent cross contamination. Reusable cloths can endure up to 500 wash cycles before they need to be replaced. By using adaptable microfiber products, healthcare facilities improve their ability to clean alongside demonstrating visible cleaning to patients and visitors.


Healthcare facilities were considered the most forthright proponents of hand hygiene prior to 2020 and have still seen a dramatic increase in the need for hand

hygiene provisions. RCP’s contribution to the various settings of healthcare hand hygiene has been through free-standing hand hygiene stations and wall mounted dispensing solutions. Hand hygiene stations can be securely deployed wherever needed, providing instant hand hygiene via alcohol or alcohol-free hand rubs. These stations are touch operated, eliminating cross contamination risks while wall mounted units have antimicrobial touchpoints. Both use sealed soap refills that eliminate the contamination risks inherent in bulk refill systems.


Throughout healthcare facilities, there are multiple points where waste is created and stored prior to transportation. In both cases, it’s advisable to isolate waste in closed lid containers to prevent germs spreading. RCP waste management products provide closed-lid isolation of waste and further reduce risk with foot operation rather than manual handling. Smooth resin construction make them easy to clean between uses, eliminating lingering threats.


In addition to product solutions for healthcare, and to support all facilities through the pandemic towards

Mattress Maintenance Services Helping Hospitals and Care Homes Spring into Action

By Truan Remmington - Contracts Development Executive – Spearhead Healthcare In order to bring a mattress back into service after use, it needs to be completely cleaned and decontaminated to approved standards that guarantee bacterium and viruses such as C.Diff and MRSA are killed, and no cross contamination occurs. A challenge with mattress cleaning is not only that it requires large commercial washing machines but that different mattress types also require different treatment. The construction of air pressure mattresses for example means they cannot be washed in high temperature machines, requiring cold-water disinfection instead. The only certified process available, OTEX, injects ozone into each wash, killing all the harmful microorganisms without using the heat

or chemicals of traditional laundering. However, having the time, staff, and the facilities required to provide this level of deep clean for each of your mattresses can prove very costly. In additional to it being potentially dangerous, there is also a high probability of reputational damage if standards slip and go unnoticed by your staff, because this is something patients and their families will always, quite rightly, notice and report. The right rental and maintenance service will not only provide you with an appropriate mattress when you need it, but offer fast cleaning, repairs, and replacements, ensuring mattresses are up to the required standards. This undoubtedly saves you

reopening, RCP has created digital guidance documents: • Sector specific best practice guides • Cleaning and waste management guidance • Return-to-work preparation guide • Bulk refill soap systems health risk factsheet Constant dialogue helps RCP understand the needs and expectations of professionals across the healthcare sector. Taking this information, using it to develop products that solve multiple challenges, makes RCP the leading choice for performance and ROI. Find out more about Rubbermaid Commercial Products by visiting or emailing

money in the long term, provides the best possible levels of care to your patients and residents, and reassures all stakeholders that hygiene is a top priority; a must in the current climate.


So what should you look for in a rental service – apart from a wide range of special purpose mattresses? Here are a few key pointers: • Rapid breakdown response • All work carried out by trained technicians • Mattresses returned in fully certified working order with free loans while repairs are carried out to allow you continuity of service • Servicing and/or repair offered in a hygiene controlled environment where mattresses are PAT tested, static pressure leak tested and cycle tested • Mattresses placed in an infection controlled 'Cold Storage' zone to control cross contamination • Mattresses completely cleaned and decontaminated using a specialist, certified decontamination system to approved standards • Transparent and clear results reporting for peace of mind In today’s ever-more pressurised care sector, on-demand mattress rental and maintenance services are playing a growing role in helping providers respond quickly to growing patient and resident intake. This allows you to maintain the highest possible standards of infection control practises in all areas. Visit



Are You Using the Correct PPE?

Answering your questions on the type of mask to wear to reduce the risk of those you provide care for contracting Covid-19

THE CURRENT PROBLEM COVID 19 has led to a surge in demand for personal protective equipment throughout the UK, and in response, a multitude of UK businesses have established supply lines to try and fill this demand. Unfortunately, although millions of masks are now being brought in, many provide little or no protection against COVID 19. The confusing amount of variations of masks combined with the lack of information in the market and masks being sold with invalid certification has led to many users, including even the NHS, ending up with inadequate masks at disproportionate prices.

WHO ARE WE? Our company is called HealthHealth (, due to the ongoing pandemic many businesses have had to purchase PPE for the first time, we have transformed our distribution model from wholesale to supply the end-user directly to prevent price gouging via intermediaries and ensure the user receives the correct masks for their intended use.

WHAT MASKS SHOULD I BE USING? The 2 main types of masks that provide protection against COVID 19 according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) are N95/KN95 masks and 3 Ply Surgical masks. KN95 masks are 4/5 ply (layers) masks that come in two grades; FFP2 and FFP3. The WHO recommends these masks be used by those who are symptomatic and otherwise should be reserved for and used by those in the healthcare sector, particularly those in and around patients who are most susceptible to Covid-19. These masks should be tested to EN:149 standards by a PPE compliant non-voluntary body. There are four types of medical-grade 3 Ply surgical masks; Type I, Type IR, Type II and Type IIR. Type I and Type II masks are not fluid-resistant and hence are not

ideal for use during the ongoing pandemic. Fluid resistance is the ability of a mask to catch the respiratory droplets discharged when a user coughs or sneezes. The WHO recommends fluid-resistant medical masks be worn by over 60s and those who have underlying health problems, as well as those who are in contact with these groups. Both masks have high fluid resistance and high breathability. The difference between the two is type IR has a bacterial filtration efficiency (BFE) of >95% and type IIR has a BFE of >98%. Type IIR is therefore preferable to type IR, although both provide protection against COVID 19. These masks should be tested to EN:14683 standard by a PPE compliant non-voluntary body.

WHICH MASKS SHOULD I BE WARY OF? A surgical 3 Ply mask that does not fit into the above two categories cannot be classified as medical. Although they may provide some protection, they are not tested by the relevant standards to qualify them as either type IR or Type IIR, and are hence not appropriate for care workers. Valve masks provide no protection for anyone but the user of the mask, they do not prevent respiratory droplets being emitted by the user, and are hence not appropriate for care workers. Reusable cloth masks lose their integrity with every wash, a study by the WHO shows them as significantly less effective than medical masks, and are hence not appropriate for care workers.

HOW DO I AUTHENTICATE A MASK I’M BEING SOLD? 1. Ask for a test report and a CE certificate/conformity and make sure the mask is tested to the aforementioned standards (EN:14683 for surgical masks and EN:149 for KN95 masks) 2. Verify the test report and the CE certificate on the website of the testing body on the certificate, most testing bodies will allow you to do this online automatically.

ABOUT US We provide all the aforementioned masks via our website: . Our Type IR and Type IIR masks supersede the required standards and are made to fit comfortably on the face for elongated periods. Our KN95 masks are all individually sealed in sachets. Our focus is on high quality at wholesale prices. Our masks have been supplied to the UK Department of Health, the NHS, Care Homes, Dentists, to name but a few. Please email us at for any bulk enquires. GET 10% OFF when you use the code CARERDIGITAL

+44 (0)203 488 5653

Tel: 01495 772164 I 07967 402995



Haigh Engineering Hand sanitising just got simpler and safer with the Astreea® touchless pedal operated stylish sanitiser dispenser.

• Revolutionary dispenser • 12 month warranty • Anti-theft • Hands-free • Genuine usage increase • Suitable Indoor or Outdoor • Medical stainless-steel • No electrical outlet needed • Use any hand sanitiser |

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

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

Astreea - The Pedal Hand Sanitiser

As COVID-19 continues to be a major concern for UK care homes, it is important to plan and implement strategies to keep their visitors and employees safe. Where cleanliness and efficiency are key for the hospitality trade, a simple and safe way of sanitising is the way forward. Introducing the Astreea® pedal hand sanitiser. Touchless, fully mechanical and made entirely from medical stainless steel, this revolutionary dispenser requires no assembly, electrical outlet, or maintenance. It’s designed for both indoor and outdoor use, making it ideal for any public space. The Astreea® dispenser is different from typical plastic wall or postmounted products. Its seamless steel body and mechanical operation make it almost indestructible. Units are mainte-

nance-free, arrive fully assembled, and use any hand sanitiser product, making them an ideal solution during these uncertain times. Astreea®'s many virtues have made it an easy choice for businesses as lockdown eases. • 12 month warranty • Anti-theft • Hands-free • Genuine usage increase where installed • Medical stainless-steel construction • Developed in an aerospace factory • No electrical outlet needed • Visitors see you are proactively making site safe • Highest quality materials • Universal use, can be filled with any hand sanitiser To learn more, visit or contact



The Care Home That Remained Covid-19 Free Thanks To Ground-Breaking Protein

“There isn’t a doubt in my mind that it saved the lives of our residents and staff.” The owner of a care home has hailed a £20 face covering, coated in a ground-breaking protein called Viruferrin™ that is now scientifically proven to stop the spread of Covid-19, as ‘life-saving’, after it helped to prevent a coronavirus outbreak within her home. The news comes as ONS released statistics showing that just over 28% of all coronavirus deaths in Wales occurred in care homes. Former nurse Elen Hughes and husband Trevor Hughes, are owners/directors of the Plasgarnedd Care Home on Anglesey; they purchased the Virustatic Sheild face coverings for all their staff very early on in the pandemic when the World Health Organisation confirmed the COVID19 pandemic threat. This decision, they believe, is the main reason the care home was able to control the disease, despite one resident becoming ill with the virus and given a positive diagnosis. “The face covering, in my opinion, definitely stopped any type of transmission to my staff,” said Elen. “This meant none of them passed it on to the other residents. The protective face coverings have been life-saving. I stand by that! There is not a doubt in my mind that it saved the lives of our residents.” Elen, who oversees a team of 120 carers and support staff over two sites and in the community, made the decision to provide face coverings for all employees some time before guidance from Public Health Wales was changed to make them compulsory for the sector. “I saw these face coverings on the news and decided right there and then to go ahead and purchase them for my team. At that time, we were under no obligation to do that, we were told by Public Health Wales that

we just needed aprons and gloves, but because of my nursing background and I guess, a gut feeling, I just knew that the situation was serious and that we needed to protect our residents (all of whom are in single rooms) and that to do so we needed to protect our staff – even though there were no confirmed cases here.” continued Elen, “However, subsequently, one of our ladies became ill. When her condition deteriorated, our resident was admitted to hospital where it was confirmed that she had the COVID-19 virus. I have no doubt that this lady will have been infectious while she was in our care before and that the Virsutatic face coverings worn by our staff alongside scrupulous hygiene prevented them from becoming infected and spreading the virus through our home.” Some care homes in North Wales have unfortunately not been as fortunate. One with a similar number of residents, which received a positive diagnosis at the same time, has seen several staff members and residents test positive for Covid-19 and a number of fatalities. “We’ve had a similar set of results across both of our sites, so it can’t be coincidence. Others sadly haven’t been so lucky, and I simply put that down to the fact we’ve worn Virustatic Shields and that our amazing staff have followed our own strict infection control guidelines.” Virustatic Ltd, the leading biotech organisation behind the masks, donated 20 of its Shields to Plasgarnedd. Overall it donated 15,000 of its coverings to frontline workers, charities and those most at risk across the UK. Paul Stanton, a former national Director of NHS Board development, who works as an independent consultant with NHS organisations and with senior clinicians commented: “In any care home there is a significant risk that staff who have become infected in the course of their ordinary lives may, before their symptoms develop, unintentionally bring Covid-19 into their place of work and thus spread the virus to colleagues and to residents – unless they are suitably protected against airborne transmission of infected particles. “Where residents, as was the case at Plasgarnedd, are isolated within single rooms, unprotected staff could all too easily have spread the virus from one infected resident to others – and indeed to their colleagues. However, it seems that in this case the Virustatic protective face coverings helped to prevent any onward transmission. It will be important to establish, through properly conducted clinical trials, how important a contribution the protective face coverings can make in other private sector residential care settings”. Initial discussions are already underway between Virustatic and Care England, the umbrella representative body for private sector residential care home providers, to initiate such trials. “It will also be vital to the wider UK economy to establish, through properly conducted and evaluated trials, the contribution that these protective face coverings can make in other non-care workplaces. Potentially, the ability of this new form of face covering to prevent the spread of airborne particulate infections in workforce intensive employment settings could be

game changing” Paul Stanton said. This week it was announced that the ground-breaking Viruferrin™ coating used on the Virustatic Shield has been independently tested and proven to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection at a cellular level. The discovery is being hailed as a significant breakthrough in the fight against the disease, paving the way to research that could deliver a cure. The next step is clinical trials on preventative and curative applications of the Viruferrin™ technology. Paul Hope, Inventor of the Virustatic technology and products said: "The coating has been demonstrated to protect the cells. If that is replicated within the respiratory systems and lungs it will stop the virus spreading because it cannot infect other cells. We believe the tests demonstrate the effective preventative and curative ability of this coating against Covid-19.” Paul made it his mission to find a way to prevent deaths caused in pandemics after his own grandfather died of the Spanish Flu in 1919. This latest discovery builds on 10 years of work by Paul, his family and a team of British scientists and virologists. Paul ended: “I am delighted to hear that our face coverings have already proven life-saving for Plasgarnedd Care.” Plasgarnedd Care is an award-winning Care Provider which has over 30 years’ experience of providing the highest level of care and support for service users in and around Anglesey and Gwynedd. More information: The Virustatic Shield is available to buy direct from the website


HYGIENE & INFECTION CONTROL Proven Technology Offers Greater Protection for Staff and Residents Against Covid-19

Care Homes are having to work around the clock to ensure their facilities are as clean and infection-free as possible, to try and prevent Covid-19 (and multiple other viruses and harmful bacteria) from entering their facility in the first place or containing it once it does. However, routine cleaning and disinfection, even with the use of other hand sanitisers and antibacterial surface cleaners, only sanitises the individual or surface for that moment in time, i.e. as soon as contact is made with an infected surface or introduced from the outside, the area or the person is no longer safe. In the tight confines of a Care Home, supporting one of the most vulnerable groups, cross infection via surface contamination is a major challenge. The transient nature of current cleaning regimes will always prove challenging, particularly as over 80% of germs are spread by hands. Now a proven, independently accredited technology that offers a protective barrier wherever there is a risk of infection is at the forefront of preventing and protecting against the spread of Covid-19. Once applied it stays active, providing up to 30 days

protection on surfaces and 24 hours on the skin. In a Care Home, this can dramatically reduce the chances of encountering a crisis by reducing the spread of dangerous pathogens either by hand or touch. OneSpray’s Hand Sanitiser offers 24 hours protection with one application, contains no alcohol, is ultra-gentle on the skin and won’t wash off during normal daily washing. This means it is very economical to use versus alcoholbased sanitisers, given that typically one person will apply those sanitisers up to 10 times per day. OneSpray’s Surface Sanitiser offers protection on nearly all surfaces including door handles, desks, door entry systems and keypads, touchscreens, phones, kitchens and taps. A single application forms an invisible barrier over the surface that lasts up to 30 days and will not wash off so normal, daily cleaning can continue. OneSpray products incorporate Zoono technology, world leaders in antimicrobial protection. Over 150 worldwide laboratory testing reports support the efficacy of their products. In earlier trials for London Underground a treated train came back 99.9% clear after 28 days of uninterrupted service. OneSpray is offering a Starter Outbreak-Prevention Package, specifically for Care Homes. It consists of a 5-litre Hand Sanitiser with two 1-litre dispensers, plus a 5-litre Surface Cleaner with two 500ml spray bottles. For more information contact 07811113108 or email or see the advert on page 8.

New Health Check Station A new product has been released to help check individuals’ temperatures as they enter a public space. The Health Check Station by Contour Heating has been designed to help control the spread of infection in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Manufactured from mild steel with a BioCote® antimicrobial powder coating, The Health Check Station has been designed with safety and efficiency in mind. A durable Perspex screen with a small cut out provides the user with a safe means of checking employee and visitor temperature upon arrival. With a letterbox-style slot for documentation (such as registers and time-sheets) and informative signage to help reinforce key messages in relation to government guidelines, The Health Check Station can be used in offices, factories, retail units, public buildings, schools and much more. The Health Check Station is available directly from Contour Heating. Call +44 (0) 1952 290 498 to find out more or head over to

Staysafe Visor - CE-Certified PPE Manufactured in the UK Staysafe Visor is a subsidiary of 1st Packaging Ltd, a leading specialist UK plastics manufacturer founded in 2002. Used in a wide range of health and commercial settings, our high-quality recyclable CE-certified face shields offer protection against liquid droplets, sprays and splashes. Our visors are comfortable to wear for extended periods of time, are anti-fog and easy to assemble. As a long-established UK company, we have been able to step up our manufacture of PPE to meet high demand during the current unprecedented circumstances. Our facilities enable us to produce well in excess of 200,000 items per week. At Staysafe Visor our experienced team takes very seriously its role in support-

ing the health of the community by helping to maintain a safer environment. Availability and affordability are the cornerstones of our operation. Because we sell directly to businesses, organisations and the general public, we are able to remove the need for intermediaries and keep costs low. We believe that we offer the most competitive rates on the market for this type of CE-certified PPE. Our high-quality products are helping to better protect employees in the NHS, care homes, education, transport, manufacturing and a host of other workplace settings. For further details about our range of visors please do not hesitate to contact our friendly expert team. See page 4 for details or visit

Meeting the hygiene challenge of COVID-19 By Zak Manhire, Chief Commercial Officer at Regency Design Protecting care home workers and their patients throughout the COVID-19 epidemic and beyond has been a constant challenge, and one that has attracted considerable media attention. It has also prompted the business community to look at its own capabilities, and whether manufacturing and production facilities can be turned over to fulfilling the ongoing demand for protective clothing and equipment.

Made out of premium quality products, Regency Design’s dispensers cut down on sanitiser costs by using sensory technology to dispense an adjustable amount (1.5ml, 1.2ml or 0.8ml) of sanitizer gel or liquid per use. As well as this, the units are constructed out of Mild Steel, which makes them lightweight, yet robust and sturdy. They are all powder coated in a SteriTouch antimicrobial covering to ensure no harbouring of germs on the units themselves. The units are customisable with bespoke under surface mark resistant graphics applied on the front of the unit.

Our company, Regency Design, is one such company that has answered the call, and now produces a suite of products ranging from face visors to automatic hand sanitising units to keep carers, patients and guests safe and avoid cross contamination issues in often challenging environments. All of which manufactured in the UK at their site in Surrey. Our face visors prove useful for care-home staff as they are highly durable, re-useable and CE marked to demonstrate conformity with health, safety and environmental protection standards. They comprise a clear, polycarbonate panel with a soft foam headband and a Velcro adjustable strap. With anti-mist properties, high-quality optics with no distortion and a space for branding / name.

Most recently we have gone one better and added an innovative body temperature reading camera with AI Face recognition, that can measure temperatures within 100 milliseconds and at a distance of 0.5 metres all while someone is sanitising their hands. The infrared temperature sensor provides alerts when a person has a high temperature. The system is calculated with an algorithm for object heat and fast detection temperature accuracy, with a temperature sensing range of 30 degrees Celsius to 45 degrees Celsius and an accuracy of plus or minus 0.3 degrees Celsius.

Along with the face visors, Regency Design has also launched various automatic hand sanitising units to increase hygiene levels. The automatic hand sanitising units help reduce cross contamination by making the hand cleaning process completely touchless. Our units are diverse as they come as both small and large floor standing units, wall mounted units and countertop units, which provide convenience to all parts of a care home. The small and large floor standing dispensers allow all patients to reach the units, whether they are in a wheelchair or standing, and the countertop units provide hygiene for staff, administration and visitors.

The temperature reading system gives care home staff a non-invasive and comfortable way of checking, staff and guests temperatures, with an aim of reducing contamination issues and increasing hygiene. To go with the sanitising units, Regency Design also supplies a sanitiser gel or liquid, which can be put into the automatic dispensers so care home staff can keep their units topped up with ease and without worry of replenishment.

Regency has committed to offer a 15% discount on all its products if you use Carer20 when enquiring.

For more information please contact Zak Manhire on or 07837391421.



CareZips Dignity Trousers ™

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

CareZips™ are suitable for men and women. They are available in 7 sizes for perfect fit. CareZips™ are soft and wrinkle resistant with stretch and give for extra comfort. Practical, durable, washable and non-iron, the CareZips™ trousers are the perfect choice for daily use. Contact Win Health Medical Ltd - 01835 864866 or see the advert on page 7.

New Skincare & Incontinence Leaflet A new ‘Skincare management in incontinence’ leaflet is available from Thornton & Ross Pharmaceuticals – manufacturers of Zerolon® Barrier Cream. Accredited by the Association for Continence Advice (ACA), the leaflet is designed as a quick guide for all health professionals involved with continence care. Including recommendations from NICE, the leaflet also outlines factors to consider when selecting a barrier cream and advice on helping prevent incontinence-associated dermatitis (IAD). Zerolon® Barrier Cream is the latest addition to the Zeroderma emollients and barrier creams range, specially formulated to prevent irritation from bodily fluids including urine, faeces and exudate. To receive a free copy of the ‘Skincare management in incontinence’ leaflet, please email: Thornton & Ross Ltd, Linthwaite, Huddersfield HD7 5QH 01484 842217

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

iMEDicare Ltd is a dynamic and rapidly growing Medical Device Distributor offering an exciting range of unique and market leading medical products for patient use in the fields of Urology and Continence Management Treatment throughout the UK. Our motto is “Pelvic Health Naturally” – premised on the ability of living tissues to react positively to clinically approved therapeutic measures in a pelvic health con-

text. Our logo features a very interesting version of the infinity symbol in blue – which also looks like the Pelvic Girdle bone structure. This symbol represents a sense of simplicity and balance – an important tenet in providing effective healthcare solutions and achieving optimal pelvic health. We offer a unique blend of professional and patient product training in Clinical and Home environments which are designed to improve individual product customizability, user uptake and long-term patient compliance and satisfaction. See the advert on this page for details.


LAUNDRY SOLUTIONS 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 protection to

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

Please go on our website to see the new range of Dishwasher proof ID labels which can also be stuck onto textiles.

5 Reasons Why You Should Choose LaundryTec Chester based LaundryTec since its foundation in early 2016 has become one of Alliance Internationals major UK distributers. Founded by Jeremy Hartigan, the team of industry professionals with the backing of the Alliance Lavamac brand and supported by its service partner PDS Laundry based in Nuneaton. They supply a significant number of the UK’s leading health care operators with equipment, installation and after sale support. The LaundryTec designs offer not only washing, drying and ironing equipment but a full range of handling, distribution, folding and identification systems, to create a fully functioning laundry complete with all items necessary for efficient operation. Every LaundryTec machine includes full installation options, including the removal and disposal of an existing machine. A training program and a minimum of 24 months part and labour warranty. The environment is at the forefront of every opera-

tor’s mind. Standard specification on a Lavamac machine includes functions that automatically weigh and control the energy input into the machine and store the data in the machines memory. Our LS range of electric heat pump dryers require no ventilation or gas services and operates at 3kw per hour.

5 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD CHOOSE LAUNDRYTEC 1. Cost 2. Efficiency 3. Service 4. Design 5. Innovation Telephone 0151 317 3127 Web

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

0151 317 3127


Washer Extractors

Tumble Dryers

Cost Quality Service Design Innovation

Flatwork Ironers

Other Equipment



Tackling Malnutrition in Dementia Patients

By Gillian Farren, Registered Dietitian

NUTRITIONAL CHALLENGES Patients with dementia face numerous challenges, all of which can have a significant impact on their ability to eat and drink. In the UK alone, it is estimated that 3 million older people are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition.1 Alongside weight loss, key micronutrient deficiencies are recognised, with an estimated 35% of older people showing deficiencies in vitamins A, B12, iron and zinc.2 Although weight loss is part of the natural ageing process, dementia is recognised as a key contributor.3 Moreover, the link between dementia and weight loss strengthens as dementia becomes more severe.4,5 It is important to support dementia patients in eating and drinking well, as inadequate nutritional intake can make a person with dementia more confused.6 Recent guidance from NICE recommends that carers “encourage and support people living with dementia to eat and drink, taking into account their nutritional needs” and “consider involving a speech and language therapist if there are concerns about a person’s safety when eating and drinking”.7 However, dementia carers face specific challenges in supporting patients to eat and drink enough.8

DYSPHAGIA: A BARRIER FOR DEMENTIA SUFFERERS Dysphagia is a term used to describe difficulty or discomfort in swallowing food, fluids and saliva. Dementia is a well-recognised cause.9 Signs of dysphagia in people with dementia include coughing or choking; difficulties chewing; spitting out food; wet gurgling voice after eating; and food/drink spilling from or residue in the patient’s mouth after eating.10 If dysphagia is not managed appropriately, patients can suffer severe health consequences such as chest infections, aspiration pneumonia and choking-related death 9.

PROMOTING A SAFE SWALLOW The International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI) is a global standard that describes correct and appropriate thickening of liquids and food texture modification, to ensure that they are safe to offer to patients with differing degrees of dysphagia.11 IDDSI gives clear descriptors for all levels of consistency, from level 0 (thin/unthickened) up to 4 (extremely thick) for fluids, and from level 7 (regular) down to level 3 (liquidised) for foods.11 It is vital that patients with dementia are only offered foods and drinks that are a safe and appropriate texture for their current level of dysphagia. This should be assessed and regularly monitored by a registered speech and language therapist. Many dementia patients dislike the taste and texture of thickening agents. Thus, products which do not require added thickener may be more acceptable, and can make it easier when patients with dementia are preparing their own drinks. Interestingly, research suggests that use

products which do not require added thickener can lead to increased food and fluid intake.12

PERCEPTION, DEXTERITY AND DISTRACTIONS Dementia often changes how patients recognise once-familiar foods, drinks and utensils.6 Additionally, preference for sweeter tastes and contrasting colours are commonly observed 3. Involving patients in preparing their own foods and drinks, alongside the use of adapted utensils and cutlery, and a reduction in distracting sounds, sights and objects at mealtimes, can encourage independence and focus, while preventing wandering off during mealtimes.13

USING THE “FOOD FIRST APPROACH” For patients with small appetites, foods and drinks can be enriched by adding foods rich in fats and sugars – such as butter, jam, cheese and cream – to increase energy and protein intake without increasing the amount of food eaten. This is referred to as a “food first” approach.14 While this is the preferred first-line strategy to tackle malnutrition, dementia patients can still struggle to meet their needs from food alone, and oral nutritional supplements or nutrition shakes such as NuVu Life are often recommended to fill the gap.15

HOW NUVU LIFE CAN HELP Made up with 200ml whole milk, one 50g sachet of NuVu Life delivers an impressive 362 kcal and 27.5g protein. When mixed with water or milk, it is IDDSI level 2 consistency. For patients requiring level 2 thickened fluids, NuVu Life removes the need for added thickening agents, thus saving time and reducing risk of error for carers and patients alike. Moreover, NuVu Life is enriched with vitamins and minerals, including those identified earlier in the article (i.e. vitamins A, B12, iron and zinc), which are a specific concern for older people. Just one 50g sachet on NuVu Life provides 100% of the recommended daily intake for these key micronutrients. NuVu Life is available to purchase online (, RRP depends on the quantity purchased. Use voucher code TC30 to claim 30% off your order. For sales enquiries, or to request a sample of NuVu Life, please email or call: 07740 844 405.

Martin McKee’s Croque Madame

REFERENCES: 1. Stratton R, Smith T, Gabe S. Managing malnutrition to improve lives and save money. BAPEN Report 2018. (available at ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 2. Maggini S, Pierre A, Calder P. Immune function and micronutrient requirements change over the life course. Nutrients. 2018; 10(10):1531. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 3. Prince M, Albanese E, Guerchet M, Prina M. Nutrition and dementia: a review of available research. Alzheimer’s Disease International 2014. (available at [accessed 07 June 2020] 4. White H, Pieper C, Schmader K. The association of weight change in Alzheimer's disease with severity of disease and mortality: a longitudinal analysis. J Amer Geriatrics Soc 1998; 46(10):1223-7. (available at [accessed 07 June 2020] 5. Albanese E, Taylor C, Siervo M, Stewart R, Prince MJ, Acosta D. Dementia severity and weight loss: A comparison across eight cohorts. The 10/66 study. Alzheimer’s & dementia: the journal of the Alzheimer’s Association. 2013; 9:649-656. (Avaiable at [accessed 07 June 2020] 6. Alzheimer’s Society. Caring for a person with dementia: a practical guide. 2019. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 7. National Institute for Clinical Excellence. Dementia: assessment, management and support for people living with dementia and their carers (NG97). 2018. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 8. NHS Education for Scotland. Supporting People with Dementia in Acute Care: Learning Resource. 2016. (available at: [accessed 07 June 2020] 9. Holdoway A, Smith A. Meeting nutritional need and managing patients with dysphagia. Journal of Community Nursing. 2020; 34(2):52-59. (Available at: [accessed 07 June 2020] 10. Hansjee D. 5 Fundamental Ms: cutting aspiration risk in dementia and dysphagia patients. Nursing Times. 2019; 115(4):38-41. (Available at: [accessed 07 June 2020] 11. International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative. Complete IDDSI Framework detailed definitions 2.0. 2019. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 12. McCormick S, Stafford K, Saqib G, Ni Chronin D, Power D. The efficacy of pre-thickened fluids on total fluid and nutrient consumption among extended care residents requiring thickened fluids due to risk of aspiration. Age and Ageing. 2008; 37(6):714–715. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 13. Crawley H, Hocking E. Eating well: supporting older people and older people with dementia. Caroline Walker Trust. 2011. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 14. Forbes C. The ‘food first’ approach to malnutrition. Nursing and Residential Care. 2014; 16(8): 442-445. (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020] 15. Robinson K. Nutrition and Dementia. Dietetics Today. Sept 2018; 42-43 (Available at: ) [accessed 07 June 2020]

Are You in Need of * Dysphagia Training ? Did you know that between 5075% of nursing home residents suffer from dysphagia1? Nutricia has a

INGREDIENTS Sandwich • • • • • • •

20 slices of thick white bread 20 British Lion eggs 20 honey roast ham 2 red onions 150 grated mature cheddar 150 grated Gruyère cheese 50g butter (soft)

Bechamel • • • • • •

90g butter (unsalted) 90g plain flour 1/4 tsp English mustard 100g milk powder 900ml milk (whole fat) 50g grated parmesan

Serves: 10 Allergens: Eggs, wheat, milk

Method: 1. To make the Béchamel, fortify the milk with milk powder in a pan. In a separate pan, combine the melted butter with flour. Slowly incorporate the butter on a medium heat until it’s smooth. Add the parmesan, mustard and salt and pepper. 2. To make the sandwich, spread each slice of bread with the Béchamel before adding some ham, red onion, Gruyère cheese, cheddar and pepper. 3. Spread the top slice of bread with butter. Heat a pan on a medium heat and place the sandwich butter side down with a little extra butter and fry on each side. 4. Remove from the heat, top with more Béchamel and cheese and place in the oven to finish cooking at 170°C for 3 – 4 minutes (fan oven). 5. Remove the fried sandwich and top with a sunny side up British Lion egg. 6. Serve with a fresh tossed mixed salad with red onion, mixed peppers, tomatoes, cucumber, radish and carrot. Recipe courtesy of For more information please call the British Egg Information Service on 020 7052 8899 or see the advert on page 19.

training solution for you, a FREE elearning covering the fundamentals of dysphagia management using Nutilis Clear. The training is divided into 4 sections and has been specially designed for busy health and social care staff caring for people living with dysphagia. It takes 60 minutes in total to complete, however you can complete one section at a time.

HOW CAN THIS TRAINING HELP YOU? • Easy & convenient online solution to dysphagia training • Visibility to track progress in your care home • Raise the quality standard of dysphagia care in a consistent way

ing professional development. There is a certificate that can be downloaded once the training has been successfully completed. Use the camera on your phone to scan the QR code to access the elearning and get started! For any questions contact your local Nutricia sales representative or our Resource Centre at Nutilis Clear is a Food for Special Medical Purposes for the dietary management of dysphagia and must be used under medical supervision. Reference: 1. O’Loughlin G, Shanley C. Swallowing problems in the nursing home: a novel training response. Dysphagia 1998; 13, 172-183.(

The quality standards aim is for all new health and social care staff members caring for patients with Dysphagia to complete the modules as part of their induction programme. Existing health and social care staff members should also complete the learning to support their continu-

*This training is intended for healthcare professionals only.

NEW DYSPHAGIA E-LEARNING Between nursing Betw een 50-75% of n ursing from home rresidents esidents suffer suffer fr om dysphagia d ysphagia1

ARE YOU IN NEED OF DYSPHAGIA TRAINING? NUTRICIA HAS A SOLUTION! A FREE e-learning covering the fundamentals of dysphagia using Nutilis Clear*

4 modules 60 min utes minutes

Point your camera at the code to access the registration link



Calibre Audio - Unleash the Power of Your Imagination Audiobooks offer a gateway to the world of independence when print is inaccessible. Reading books has many health benefits; from reducing anxiety and helping to combat memory loss, to boosting mental health. Books provide us with companionship, adventure, empathy and enjoyment, and listening to audiobooks extends all of this to people who cannot read printed books. A restricting disability can bring with it the sting of isolation, and being locked out of activities that were once enjoyed can create frustration and loneliness. However, research has shown that listening to audiobooks can boost mental health (ref., helping to

counteract depression and other mental health issues. Escaping to audiobooks provides comfort and companionship as well as being a coping strategy in hard times. Calibre Audio is a charity, providing free audiobooks to anyone who struggles to read print, through sight loss, dyslexia or a physical disability. Our collection of over 11,500 audiobooks includes books from all genres, both fiction and non-fiction, from the classics to the latest blockbusters; from crime to autobiographies. Our books are available online for members or delivered to your door via a free postal service. It is free and easy to join. Visit for more information or to join. See page 6 for details.

Adaptawear Clothing To Help Healthcare & Care Home Workers: Independent & Assisted Dressing If you are a healthcare or care home worker or Occupational Therapist and struggling to dress your patients during this Covid-19 pandemic; then take a look at our range of Adaptawear adapted clothing for both men and women. Adaptawear comfort clothing has been designed to help independent living and assisted dressing with the aim to make getting dressed easier and less painful for both the wearer and carer. Adaptawear designs and manufacturers a range of ladies and men’s open back and drop front trousers, magnetic & open back shirts and blouses, dresses, skirts, open back nighties and front fastening bras. We also sell a selection of everyday essentials aimed at making people comfortable day and night. Adaptawear clothes are ideal for

arthritis, stroke, Parkinson, incontinence and dementia sufferers as well as people of all ages who struggle with buttons and zips. The easy fit clothes are made from quality and natural fabrics to provide maximum comfort. Adaptawear Offers: • Discreetly Adapted Clothes • Independent & Assisted Dressing • Ladies & Men's Daywear and Nightwear • UK Nationwide and Overseas Deliveries • No Quibble 14 Day Returns • VAT Exemption where relevant • FREE Delivery on orders over £100 For more information on Adaptawear’s Product Range please visit Carer readers please quote TC141 for 10% discount off your first order.

CARE VISION – Outstanding Care is at the Heart of Everything We Do At Carevision, outstanding care truly is at the heart of everything they do. They have combined over 40 years of hands on experience running care homes and working with some of the smartest mind in tech, they have created Care Vision - An all-in-one, cloud-based system that incorporates all your care and admin in to one easy to use system. Carers can compile resident notes, health observations and EMAR. Care home managers can manage rotas, accounts, HR and house-keeping tasks and log visitors using the digital visitor book. Residents can use the system to make personal choices on meals and activities and use the app to keep in touch with family and friends. Rishi Jawaheer, director at Care Vision says “The 100+ care homes that

use our system have seen its benefits – They are saving 2-4 hours of staff hours per resident, per week and they are achieving outstanding CQC results. Carers love it, residents and relatives love it, and care home managers can’t remember how challenging managing a care home was before it.” Of course, taking on a whole new system can seem daunting, that’s why Care Vision offer minimal investment, all round support and flexible hardware options. They don’t feel the need for long-term contracts, Rishi says “We have total confidence, once you use Care Vision, you will love it as much as we do.” The Care Vision team would love to talk to you about what the system can do for you. Contact at or call 0208 768 9809. See the advert on page 38 for details.

Workwear Experts For Over 100 Years Grahame Gardner has more than 100 years’ experience in clothing a broad spectrum of medical and healthcare professionals. Our knowledge and understanding of uniform demands ensure we remain one the UK’s most trusted and respected suppliers. We combine our extensive expertise with the latest innovations in technology and fabric and design, to offer you the highest quality garments to meet the demanding standards of healthcare professionals… all at exceptional prices! We also provide one of the most flexible embroidery services available from any clothing manufacturer using state-of-theart technologies that enable us to copy virtually any design or

logo directly onto your chosen uniforms. Whether you’re seeking a classic healthcare dress or tunic, or something from our bold and bright scrubwear range, you can find it with us. As one of the largest workwear providers in the UK, we are proud to be able to offer instant stock availability on 1,000s of workwear garments all in addition to our extensive range of ‘made to order’ items that can be manufactured on demand in a wide range of styles, fabrics and colours. To find out more, or for a no obligation discussion as to how we can help with your workwear requirements, please get in touch on 0116 255 6326 or email

In-House Practical Engagement Workshop Scripts New Pressure Relief Options from Airospring Medical Now Available for Care Homes & Services Airospring Medical manufactures a range of pressure relieving devices. Our flagship products are a range of lightweight and breathable pressure relief cushions and mattress overlays made from high-tech 3D Knitted Spacer Fabrics. Airospring has been awarded a full patent in August 2014 approving this ground breaking technology. Our pressure relief cushions distribute weight and allow maximum airflow. The cushions have been tested for the dissipation of perspiration, a key factor in the fight against pressure ulcers. Welcome to a new standard in healthy seating. Call: 0115 9322403 Email: Visit:

Renray Healthcare Design and Manufacture New COVID19 Response Beds for Temporary Hospitals Renray Healthcare has developed a field response bed to supply to temporary hospitals, with our design expertise and manufacturing capability we have been able to put the COVID-19 Response bed and mattress into production quickly, with deliveries going out across the country to help in the fight against COVID-19. Renray has been supplying beds, mattresses and furniture for over 50 years and due to the increasing spread of Coronavirus, we are proactively using Hydrogen Peroxide Vapour (HPV) decontamination system in all our Heavy Goods Vehicles prior to delivery of your goods to eliminate the virus or any potential contaminant, making deliveries safer for our staff, customers and users. Let us know if you require beds for temporary or permanent hospitals, to ensure you have everything you need to continue caring for patients in this difficult time. Download our brochure now for more information: The COVID-19 Response Bed Brochure at Please contact customer service on 01606 593456 or who will be happy to assist you. See the advert on page 3.

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

removable side cushions and middle pommel; this is available in small or large. Our popular range of Soft Knit covers in a choice of 5 vibrant colours provide a softer alternative that fit easily over our standard waterproof rolls. It is recommended you seek professional advice to select the correct product depending on your needs. Contact us on 01424 853331 or visit us at to request or download a brochure, pricelist or order form, request an individualised quotation, speak to an advisor or to place an order. See the advert on page 10.

As training sessions and venues may be difficult to facilitate for some time, Happy Days Dementia Workshop has acted quickly, re-writing their ‘Practical Engagement Workshop’ into a series of easy to follow presentation and training guides. Enriching social care is at the heart of Happy Days, ‘It’s amazing to see how care teams are heartened and invigorated once they see how easy it is to engage more meaningfully with residents on a daily basis’ says Gillian Hesketh, MD of Dementia Workshop. Training in-house can support the safety of your care teams, reduce travel, time and cut costs. Demonstration and nostalgic materials can be included in packages with options to add an activity manual, reminiscence baskets and memory prompts. The workshops are ideal for building carer confidence, boosting morale and uplifting everyone’s mood.

Packages can be created to suit your care team requirements and resident interests. See The Carer front page or find starter practical workshop packs online at / Phone direct on 07971953620 or see the advert on page 1.

The Benefits of Spillsafe Every year, thousands of working hours are lost to the sanitisation of furniture which ultimately can never be completely sanitised. This can feel like a losing battle to “beat the bugs” as any attempt to truly clean soiled furniture will inevitably only be scratching the surface. The true challenge lies inside the chair, a haven for contamination, but therein lies the problem. How do you clean the inside of a chair that has been soiled? The simple answer is “you don’t”. There is no way to truly clean a chair that has been soiled as liquids will find their way into every part of your furniture, absorbed by wood and languishing in foam and fabric. So, what is the solution to sanitising your furniture?

Simply, you stop anything from ever reaching the interior. The truest way of maintaining hygeine is to prevent unsanitary situations from ever reaching the areas that cannot be easily cleaned. Investing in hygienic barriers today not only saves time and money, but ensures the protection demanded by those who need it most. This was our maxim here at SpillSafe when developing our patentpending cassette system – Why allow the uncleanable to become unsanitary in the first place? Matthew Holmes, Director of SpillSafe Ltd. Contact Spillsafe Ltd on 0330 088 4851 or See the advert on page 9.

New Guides To Supercharge Your Care Home Management Is continued customer satisfaction important to you? Could your communications with residents and their loved ones be improved? Does your care home's website need to be brought into the 2020's? If you answered yes to any of those questions, then you will be pleased to learn about a series of free expert guides for care home managers and owners. The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) in partnership with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has launched a series of guides for the care home industry. These guides provide you with specialist advice on fair trading practices, complaints procedures, communications methods and website layouts for care homes written by and for those

working in the care homes sector. UK consumer law is among the best in the world, but this also means that it can be complicated and in-depth. Care home regulations are no exception, and you may be overwhelmed by it all. These guides make it simple and straightforward so that you can avoid the regulatory pitfalls and improve your business for the good of you and your residents. The guides are hosted on Business Companion, a government-backed website containing a wealth of in-depth knowledge on every element of consumer protection written by industry experts in every sector. Download your free guides at:


TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE What Has COVID-19 Taught Us? During the last few months, the response to the COVID-19 pandemic by services and technology companies has been epic. Decision making processes which normally take months, even years took days. Massive co-ordinated efforts with care homes, hospital trusts, local authorities, manufacturers and suppliers all coming together on projects across the UK. We can certainly say, having been heavily involved in many projects in the UK and around the World, that Courtney Thorne are enormously proud and humbled to have played our part. One of the largest temporary Field Hospitals is the Dragon’s Heart Hospital inside the Principality Stadium in Cardiff. This vast stadium initially housed 335 emergency beds, when an additional 1200 beds were required Courtney Thorne was approached to supply,

install and commission nurse call points throughout the pitch and seating areas. These call points (including shower and toilet alarms) were supplied, installed and commissioned by Courtney Thorne’s own engineering team. Designed into 55 separate “wards” and integrated with paging systems. Completed in two weeks, it was a herculean effort by everyone involved. No one could have predicted what was going to happen when in January we heard of deaths in China spreading. The impact of the lock-down in March brought home the scale of the problem as business owners worried, not knowing what the consequences might be. This was true for those of us supplying the healthcare sectors, with hospitals focussing on the pandemic and care homes locking down to protect elderly residents.

As we reduce the lock down rules, for many people and businesses this means a degree of normality and returning to work, albeit with social distancing. Those in the care sectors however will be more cautious so not to risk the vulnerable and elderly. Where there are COVID-19 free hospitals some of the day to day maintenance, building work, refurbishment will re-start, and it is here that the health and care solution providers need to be ready to support these projects. Care homes need to make sure the safety of those in their care is not compromised by aging or failing nurse call systems. Courtney Thorne continued to provide full engineering, sales and support functions throughout the lock down period. A serious consideration when deciding who will supply business and person critical technology in the future. When we look back on this period, no doubt some of the practices learnt will stand the test of time, such as flexible working with more home working. Video conferencing has at last come of age, e-training, webinars, online meetings have been the savour of many busi-

nesses. It therefore appears to have taken a pandemic to create a situation where communication technologies, readily available becomes normalised. Spending quality time with our closest family is favoured rather than spending hours sat in commuter traffic. Business leaders at last realise that they can trust colleagues to do the right thing. Maybe there is a compromise to be gained where work can be more flexible, coupled with face to face meetings, not for every individual nor every business, however it is a start. For more information about solutions for care, see Courtney Thorne's advert on page 11 or visit

How Can Employers Help Improve the Work-Life Balance and Mental Health of Social Care Workers? Hailed as heroes during the pandemic, social care workers dedicate their lives to help the old, the weak and the sick. Often forgotten and under-valued, their mental health is under strain and COVID-19 has understandably worsened the situation. How can employers help their employees restore a healthier work-life balance?

THE STATE OF THE SOCIAL CARE WORKFORCE A new survey by Quinyx found that health and social care workers are amongst those most likely to have their mental health negatively impacted by their job. The pandemic has made it worse: 54% of those polled said that their work had negatively impacted their mental health over the past 12 months, versus 48% before the pandemic - a 12% increase.

LOW PAY, LONG HOURS AND HIGH EXPECTATIONS COVID-19 has seen them work longer hours and be in the spotlight, with high expectations from their employers, the nation, the government, and to an

extent, global scrutiny over which country will do “better” at handling the crisis. Added to the fear of getting sick or contaminating their loved ones, it is easy to imagine the mental burden on those who risk their lives to help others. Prior to the outbreak, the main reasons invoked by those who suffered poor mental health as a result of their job were low pay (42%) and managers’ expectations being too high (37%). Some concerns were alleviated during the pandemic though, with 72% of healthcare workers polled saying that they felt valued by their employer, versus 53% prior.

WHAT CAN EMPLOYERS DO TO IMPROVE THE SITUATION? While increasing wages may not always be possible, three areas can make a positive difference: - Two-ways communication channels, effective and open, to monitor and engage. - Allowing greater flexibility and control over work hours to restore a healthy balance.

- Optimised schedules to improve efficiency, reduce the overall cost of labour and help both workers and managers plan ahead.

HOW TO SUCCEED? Using technology to improve your workers’ work-life balance and wellbeing is one way to stay ahead of the game. Technology can help keep your employees productive, connected and happy. A solution like Quinyx helps empower workers, while optimising communication, time management and resources. It can also ensure that employers comply with the new regulations around contact and tracing, all through a simple, user-friendly app. * Research conducted by Censuswide in two stages: the first was conducted with 1,200 deskless workers who work an hourly schedule in the following sectors: healthcare and social assistance, retail, hospitality and tourism, shipping/distribution, transportation and warehousing. It took place between 11.03.2020-23.03.2020. The second was conducted with 1,205 deskless UK workers in these same sectors.




TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE The Tiny Tablet from Inspired Interaction be useful for staff training, presentations and transferring data. "This new interactive experience has been of great benefit to our longterm residential residents with mid to late stage dementia, focusing on three primary outcomes of play: sensation, relaxation and reminiscence. Their interaction and engagement have increased considerably since using the table". Stuart Davies - General Manager Plas Bryn Rhosyn, part of the Pobl Group Tel: 07950 513 176

Our touch tables are portable, adjustable and utilized the same way as a smart phone or iPad. They are ideal for improving the well being of residents through App Technology. Every Tiny Tablet comes with a commercial grade screen and a chargeable built in power pack so there are no potential trip hazards. We offer both fixed and height adjustable tables, making it accessible for standing or seated use. Wi-Fi capabilities allow the table to be used anywhere around the care home, enabling every resident to benefit both in a group activity environment and privately on a one to one basis. Having the option of USB, HDMI, VGA and Bluetooth means various devices can be connected to the table, increasing options of use. This can

Sales & Enquiries: Web: HRH Prince Charles discovering the Tiny Tablet at Plas Bryn Rhosyn Care Home

Using Technology to Manage the Prevention and Control of Infection in Care Homes For care home residents, infections can be serious, and in some cases, life-threatening. So, in the midst of a pandemic, the focus on good infection prevention and control practices has never been more important. Over the last few months, we have supported Radar Healthcare customers in the management of Covid-19 related incidents, helping them to map resident outbreaks, identify pockets of self-isolating staff and anticipate consequential risks as a result. The steps taken in care homes to protect residents and staff from infection represent an important element in the quality of care. So, knowledge and understanding of outbreak prevention, preparedness, detection and management is key.

PREVENT The dynamic management of emerging risks is a collective responsibility and one which ensures your workforce is fully involved in the process of preventing and controlling infection. Risk registers should be actively maintained and monitored with a standardised risk scoring mechanism to facilitate prioritisation. Risk stratification combined with regular audits and assessments to identify potential hazards can then support the creation of preventative action plans.

PREPARE Engaging with your workforce to co-create your strategic and

operational approach to infection prevention and control can support you to embed a culture of continuous improvement in this area. Education plays a critical role in the prevention and control of infection so it’s critical that you manage and track workforce capability and competency – giving you peace of mind that they understand the importance of infection control and the specific role they have to play.

DETECT Clear communication of symptoms, guidelines and procedures ensures staff are equipped to recognise an outbreak and take appropriate action. With standardised procedures for reporting active cases and incidents, you can develop a clear picture of the pace and spread of the infection.

DIGITALISING YOUR OUTBREAK MANAGEMENT PLAN Prompt investigation and control of infection outbreaks is critical to protect the safety of residents and staff but mobilising an infection outbreak response can be difficult if information is siloed or managed manually. Find out more about how Radar Healthcare can support your infection control processes at

Tiny Tablet

Interactive Activity Touch Tables for care homes, education & hospitals. Based in the West Midlands, all of our Tiny Tablets are designed and manufactured in the UK.

Utilising the latest touchscreen technology, we’ve created a range of products that are easy and intuitive to use, combining education & play through the use of interactive technology.

■ Wi-Fi Capabilities

■ Screenshot Function

■ Google Play Store Accessibility

■ Wheelchair Accessible

■ Bluetooth

■ Internet Browsing

■ Films and Catch Up TV

■ Brain Training / Collaborative Apps ■ Skype

■ 8 Hour Use Off One Charge

■ Data Saving Option ■ Multiple Users

■ Durable Screen

■ 3 Year Warranty

■ Full Onsite Training with every product

07950 513 176


TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE Mainteno Facilities Maintenance and Management Software Facilities Maintenance and Management Software Simple to use, easy to maintain and very affordable.

✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔

Reporting tasks and faults Asset tracking and value reporting Invoice management Add multiple images and documents Detailed analytical reporting Dashboard reporting showing live status of all tasks Management of all planned maintenance schedules Compliance testing and inspections Traffic light detailed reporting for audit purpose Audit reporting Direct allocation of work to relevant parties Can be used for help desk Supplier performance management and reporting Warranty and insurance management Can be used on any web enabled device Link tasks to calendar Create check lists for compliance purposes Contractor Quotes and Invoice Management Contractor Login upload function 020 8798 3713

Whether it’s managing planned maintenance or dealing with fault repairs, Mainteno simplifies the day-to-day maintenance of almost any organisation. Mainteno also seamlessly incorporates asset management and tracking. Mainteno streamlines every aspect of the maintenance management process, saving your organisation time and money. Usability made affordable Mainteno was designed with practicality in mind. The interface is so intuitive that basic operation can be learned in minutes, and you can be a power user in one afternoon. Elegant usability usually means a hefty price tag. However, our pricing structure means that for small

organisations, Mainteno can cost as little as two cups of coffee a month. No set-up fees, no lengthy contracts and a free trial, all mean that the system starts paying for itself straight away. Dr Asif Raja, Bsc MBBS Summercare Managing Director says “Facing significant challenges of ever increasing quality and compliance demands upon time and resources as well considerable economic pressures, Summercare, an award winning provider of residential care and housing related support, sought to upgrade their systems for managing the property and environmental aspects of its service delivery. After an extensive period of investigation and research Mainteno was selected as the platform of choice for the entire organization based on its ease of use, very short-term contract, quick set up and ongoing support.” Visit, Tel: 020 8798 3713 or email

Network Communication Systems Network Communication Systems Ltd ( NCS ) was established in 1992 and from the outset has provided Telecare and Security Products and Services, primarily to Local Government (Housing) and Housing Associations. Today we have many accreditations to our name including ISO 9001 Quality Management which ensures the company meets its quality commitments The company offers a full range of services encompassing Consultancy, Design, Project Management Installation and Maintenance The company supplies both 3rd party and own brand products for individual and grouped living. Grouped Living encompassing Sheltered Housing, Extra Care and Nursing Homes The Company offers maintenance on any make and model of

Telecare and Security Products/Systems, including system upgrades, partial and full, for better operation with the new digital telephone system being phased in by 2025. Maintenance can be offered on an ad-hoc basis or contractually via various packaged service agreements, depending on customer requirements Recently the company has just completed a design and installation project for Central Bedfordshire Council comprising over 50 CCTV cameras, some of which offer auto-tracking to get the best possible close up high quality image, Recording Equipment, Security Doors including Door Entry and Access Control and Automatic Swing Door Operators. All delivered to the client’s satisfaction. For further information, please visit

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


IT’S NOT OBSOLETE UNTIL THE OPERA LADY SINGS Grouped Alarms - Fully Integrated Telecare and Security

• 2 System types available depending on requirements • Door Entry panels and standalone fob readers • Telecare room units with choice of peripherals • On-site / Local Offsite / Off-site operation • BS8521 protocol for remote Off-site monitoring

Door Entry and Access Control

• High quality robust stainless steel panel • Panels and readers can be inter-connected • Cloud based remote management option • Well specified - Will meet your requirements • High reliability and fault tolerant • DDA compliant • Parts availability - 15 years • Low cost

Carephones and Peripherals

• Tele-care for individual properties • High quality product • Available in various models (PSTN or GSM) • Allows connection of multiple peripherals • The only product in the marketplace that offers wireless remote speech stations and voice pendants • Compatible with most Alarm Receiving Centres • Low Cost


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

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


TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE ETHEL, The Smart Care Hub The Covid19 pandemic has really ripped through our healthcare system and it has impacted the Care Home industry in a profound way too. However, what’s been quite evident, is the resilience of staff and their drive to better manage the residents in their care. In a way, the pandemic offers us an opportunity to explore if ‘technology enabled care’ can help us solve some of the issues we are facing. Can Tech help busy Carehome staff offer better support, connect the residents regularly with the family, help with clinical outcomes, without adding to their workload? It is in this context that solutions such as ETHEL, the

smart care hub has attracted a lot of interest from the Care Home sector. ETHEL is a large (16 inch) touch screen personal device with a robust stand and tailormade for 85+ yr olds who have little or no computer skills. Its easy to use interface and robust security features helps a resident connect with their wider family network and clinical team in an easy way. Families can make video calls to the Large screen device, they can send photos and video clips and send simple messages. It also allows the clinical team to offer remote physiotherapy, remotely gather vital signs from the resident on a regular basis and do remote video consultations. ETHEL also comes with a built in Early Warning Scoring system for detecting deterioration. A number of patients across the UK – from Shetland Islands to the devon coast have benefitted from using ETHEL. You can get more information at and/or call us on 07841977559.

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Qintil Learning Manager Qintil was created for the care sector and we’re proud that so many incredible health and care professionals and their employers use Qintil everyday to learn and maintain skills and manage training and compliance. Qintil is a lifelong learning platform that's built for the way the world works today. You'll almost certainly have more than one job in your lifetime, and quite possibly more than one career. You might even work more than one job at once, or for a staffing agency. We built Qintil so that you can find, share and manage everything that's essential for work - your learning, certificates, achievements and right to work docs - in one place. You can share them, connect to more

Edison Telecom

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

than one employer's learning at one time and when you move to a new job, contract or career you can take it all with you and continue to add to your lifelong record of learning. This all helps employers too of course. Now there's an easy way to get a record of new hires' learning and documents and to deliver their own training from any source. Our mission is to help everyone benefit from the thousands of ways there are to learn and to have one place to find, manage and share it all. Try for free today. Call 0300 577 1484 Email Web 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.�

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Arquella's AIDA Data Platform Lotus Care Technology Arquella is proud to release our first version of the AIDA data platform. We are committed to improving the quality of nurse call reporting by integrating cloud-based technology with advanced hardware. This development means that all of your data is easily accessible from any internet device. Our technology is even compatible with some existing nurse call systems. With the easy to read 'Dashboard', you see a brief overview of all your current calls on one simple screen. With a simple click you are able to access more detail easily. Choose rooms, zones, call types, dates and times, you can evidence the care that your residents receive with total ease. All of the data available is easily saved as a report, perfect for your CQC requirements. You

don't need any Arquella equipment to access Dashboard and Reports, our web browser interface gives you instant access onsite or offsite, complete with login control. You control who sees zones, sites or groups of homes, bringing local and national reporting with just one click. We recognise that your care teams deliver excellent care, and we are committed to supporting you in capturing those moments. This is why we strive to provide you with the best technology to gather detailed evidence of the care you deliver. Arquella's future-proof solutions keeps you up to date with all future releases, giving you peace of mind and the ability to 'Capture Moments of Care'. Please call or email us so we can show how AIDA can help you. See the advert on this page for details.

Plexus Innovation Provides GUARDIAN® To Help Safeguard Care Homes Plexus Innovation has forged links with Careline Lifestyles to take one of the job’s pressures off the nursing team at a time that is intense in the industry. Ian Murray and Steve Todd, directors of Plexus Innovation, are successfully rolling out its innovative GUARDIAN® technology. They were keen, during such unprecedented times, that a care company benefitted with no initial cost implications. GUARDIAN® is a remote, automated measurement and alert system that focuses on environmental data including temperature. Ideal in reducing the risk of legionella and ensuring temperature in water or refrigeration units is at an optimum level to protect health, Plexus Innovation’s technology comprises of a combination of hardware, with remote monitoring software. Plexus Innovation supplied training to Careline Lifestyle staff, enabling the user to simply plug in and activate the hardware in seconds, putting the data live onto the portal managed by the experienced team at Plexus Innovation. Provided initially for free, the arrangement covers nine of Careline Lifestyle’s homes across the North East. GUARDIAN® is now monitoring 37 measurement points, including medical fridges and ambient room temperatures, which must be kept at compliant levels. Ian said: “GUARDIAN® is cost effective, reliable and reduces risk. We are delighted to be remotely monitoring for Careline, where lack of compliance can be of detriment to

medications, dispensed to the people they care for. “Previously these critical assets would be checked manually, which leaves room for human error when people are busy or under pressure. Using GUARDIAN® the nurses can get on with looking after the people in their care and not worry about this detail. Our system identifies compliance issues, enabling us to keep clients informed, saving time, effort and often money! “Plexus Innovation can really help and support much of the health, social housing, care and even the hospitality industry perfectly.” Based in the North East, Careline Lifestyle is a leading independent provider of high quality nursing and residential care specialising in acquired brain injuries, neurological, mental health needs, learning and physical disabilities for persons over 18 years of age in addition to providing nursing, residential and social care for the elderly. 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 this GUARDIAN® helping hand to ensure our compliance measurements are done quickly, properly and even better, remotely. “We are always looking at innovative new ways to improve our services which frees up staff, allowing them more time to support our residence. “ “Thank you to Ian and Steve of Plexus Innovation for the free installation and remote monitoring over these first few months of a new and trying challenge!” More information on GUARDIAN® is available at

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

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

Without QCS we wouldn’t have been rated as an ‘outstanding service’ Rupert Stocks Registered Manager, Guyatt House


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Start your free trial today at or call 0330 8087 606


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