Adult Social Care COVID-19 Bulletin Issue 216: 9 November 2021

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Updates for providers.

Issue 216: 9 November 2021

The most up-to-date information from these bulletins can be found on our website.

For general advice about COVID-19 please go to: nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/


This bulletin covers:

Recent COVID-19 guidance and updates: movement between care settingshome care; easy read resources; reducing risk through ventilation 

Vaccination: working or volunteering in a care home from 11 November; booster jab

Training: PAs and carers - infection prevention and control drop in

Wellbeing: supporting registered managers

Workforce: ‘Made with Care’ blog; BBC documentary 'Inside the Care Crisis'


Recent COVID-19 guidance and updates

Workforce movement between care homes and other care settings

Guidance on limiting staff movement between care settings to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 is being updated but is still applicable (5 November 2021).

Care home providers should continue to limit staff movement between settings unless absolutely necessary. The guidance sets out what’s expected of providers on the routine movement of staff and how to manage the risks of deploying individuals who work in multiple settings - in those exceptional circumstances where it is the only way to ensure enough staff are available to care for clients safely.

Home care

The guidance for those providing personal care to people living in their own homes during COVID-19 was updated on 8 November 2021.

This guidance covers:

  • personal protective equipment
  • vaccinations
  • hospital discharge and testing
  • government support for social care
  • information collection and governance

It was updated to reflect the latest clinical advice from the UK Health Security Agency.

Easy read resources

Easy read guides with information about COVID-19 and vaccination were updated on 4 November with an easy read guide to the booster vaccination

Stop COVID-19 ‘hanging around’: ventilation reduces risk

Simple ventilation techniques can reduce the risks of catching COVID-19. A new campaign has been launched (5 November 2021) to stop COVID-19 ‘hanging around’ by demonstrating the importance of ventilation.

Dr Thomas Waite, Deputy Chief Medical Officer for England, said:

“Getting vaccinations, wearing a face covering in enclosed spaces and taking regular COVID-19 tests all make an important difference but it is also crucial that we don’t overlook the value of ventilation.

“People with COVID-19 release virus particles into the air whenever they speak, breathe or cough and these can linger in unventilated settings. it’s vital everyone understands the importance of using ventilation, such as regularly opening windows - even if just for a few minutes - to keep the air moving and prevent infections.”


Vaccination

Working or volunteering in a care home from 11 November

From 11 November 2021, anyone working or volunteering in a care home will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, unless exempt. Guidance:

vaccination of people working or deployed in care homes

proving you are unable to get vaccinated

temporary medical exemptions for vaccination of people working or deployed in care homes

Care Quality Commission (CQC) is reminding people of its role in carrying out its duties in relation to this requirement, which forms part of the fundamental standards and will be monitored and enforced in appropriate cases. CQC will not begin monitoring this until it becomes a duty on 11 November 2021. It says it will continue to use its existing assessment and enforcement policies and take a proportionate approach to ensure the welfare and safety of people who use services.

Booster: online system now allows appointment booking a month before jab due

Everyone aged over 50 and all those most at risk from COVID-19 should get a booster jab six months after their second dose. Immunity to COVID-19 reduces over time, particularly for older adults and at-risk groups.

Seven in 10 over 80s and three in five over 50s in England have already had the jab. COVID-19 booster vaccines have been delivered or booked in at older adult care homes in England where safe to do so, with almost nine in 10 care homes already visited.

And as from 8 November 2021, if you are eligible, the national booking system allows you to pre-book your booster appointment a month before you are due to have the booster


Training

Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) drop-in session for PAs and carers

The Personal Assistant (PA) IPC project team has organised an online drop-in session for PAs and carers.

The session, on Microsoft Teams, is open to all PAs and carers (including unpaid carers) working in the community.

It takes place on 30 November 2021 and runs from 11:00am to 12:00pm

Amy Hobbs-Boyd, Project Support Officer, said: “The session offers a space for discussion about recent experiences.  It also provides an opportunity to ask questions or seek advice about infection control or COVID-19 from an infection control advisor.” 

Register your place for the drop-in by emailing: PAIPCProtectCovid19@eastsussex.gov.uk


Wellbeing

New project to support registered managers

Are you a registered manager in a care home, nursing home or in home care who would like some extra wellbeing support, especially if you’ve had a really difficult time with COVID-19 outbreaks?

Now, there’s a new sector-led project, Sussex Care Association’s R&R framework (SCARRF) which aims to help you. SCARFF is a nine month NHS-funded project, and you can refer yourself to it, with the programme due to start later this month. 

The plan is to provide different layers of support/information/signposting depending on what each individual feels will be most beneficial. This could be supportive or practical. For example, specialist one-to-one mentoring sessions, facilitated peer group events offering the opportunity to create a registered managers mentoring hub, or access to workshops, webinars and resources, forums and events.

For more information, or to sign up, please contact SCARFF project manager, Juliet Smith: scarrf@eastsussexrca.co.uk


Workforce

Made with care

Deborah Sturdy, interim Chief Nurse for Social Care, writes about the national recruitment campaign ‘Made with Care’ in her blog (4 November 2021). She says:

“The pandemic has stretched health and social care workforces to the limit. We need many more new and returning care professionals with the same qualities of compassion, dedication and empathy to join our ranks and help ease pressure on the system.”

BBC documentary: Inside the Care Crisis

Were you watching the first episode of Inside the Care Crisis  on BBC Two on 8 November?  Presenter Ed Balls said he wanted to ‘immerse himself’ in a ‘typical care home to understand the realities facing those living and working in older people’s care homes’.  In the second episode, to be broadcast on 15 November, Ed will meet home care workers, clients and carers.


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