COVID-19 resources

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End of life care

Skills for Care

During the current COVID-19 pandemic, health and social care workers who may not be specialists in this area are now finding themselves caring for someone at the end of their life. This webinar – supported by Hospice UK and Dying Matters – explores advance care planning, care in the final days and care after death.

Last updated on hub: 29 June 2020

End of life care: support during the COVID-19 pandemic

Skills for Care

During the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, more than ever, people working in health and social care who may not specialists in this area are finding themselves working with people who are dying, or whose condition is deteriorating rapidly. From adapting care to meet people’s changing needs to effectively managing their comfort, good services will prioritise a dignified death that draws on expertise available from within and outside of the service. This resource summarises key points to note and includes useful links to supporting resources for further information. It draws on two Skills for Care publications the 'Good and outstanding care guide and the updated 'End of life care - common core principles.'

Last updated on hub: 29 April 2020

Ending the divide: Implications of COVID 19 for the Government's health and social care agenda

Policy Exchange

This paper explores the potential impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the Government's future health and social care policy. It argues that the coronavirus proves the artificiality of the funding divide between the NHS and social care. It calls for the Government’s recent promises on social care - cross-party talks and a manifesto pledge that “nobody needing care should be forced to sell their home to pay for it - to be strengthened.

Last updated on hub: 29 April 2020

England civil society submission to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child to inform its List of Issues Prior to Reporting (LOIPR)

Children's Rights Alliance for England (CRAE)

This submission assesses the state of children’s rights under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). Written evidence was received by 32 organisations and academics, and 60 representatives from organisations participated in the oral evidence sessions. The report sets out civil society’s top concerns for the UN to investigate and reveals that children’s rights have regressed in many areas since the UN’s last examination in 2016. It also highlights that the Government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic has not prioritised children’s rights and their voices in vital policy and legislative decisions. The report highlights that Black children have continued to suffer persistent discrimination across many aspects of their lives, including being disproportionately represented in school exclusions and in all parts of the criminal justice system. Other concerning issues highlighted in the report include: families in poverty are now living in deeper poverty than five years ago, despite rising employment prior to the pandemic; inequalities in key children’s health outcomes, such as mortality and obesity, have widened since 2016 for those from poorer and BAME backgrounds; despite increased investment, suicide is among the leading causes of death for 5 to 19-year olds; the educational attainment gap has widened as Covid-19 exacerbated the issue, with children from disadvantaged and BAME backgrounds falling further behind their peers; although there have been welcome developments to children’s social care legislation, funding for children’s and youth services has been decimated, whilst the numbers of children needing care or protection are rising, with the pandemic putting additional pressure on services; despite some positive measures, the safety and welfare of children in the criminal justice system is being put at risk and racial disparities are widening at every stage of the youth justice system; the rights of children in the immigration system have suffered as a result of the Government’s punitive Hostile Environment.

Last updated on hub: 06 January 2021

Ensuring equity for people living with disabilities in the age of COVID-19

Disability and Society

People with disabilities are at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. They may also suffer from lack of accessible emergency preparedness plans, communication and healthcare. Protective measures for people with disabilities should be endorsed and prioritized at a community level to adjust for social distancing. Repositories of local resources for emergency outreach in this time are also crucial. Telemedicine offers an innovative and safe way for health providers to care for people with disabilities to access many critical services without placing themselves or their caregivers at increased risk of contracting COVID-19. Communication strategies for critical information about resources for people with disabilities should be accessible. United States hospitals and government agencies should make allocation guideline proposals accessible to people with disabilities and incorporate bias training.

Last updated on hub: 16 November 2020

Ensuring equity for people living with disabilities in the age of COVID-19

Disability and Society

People with disabilities are at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. They may also suffer from lack of accessible emergency preparedness plans, communication and healthcare. Protective measures for people with disabilities should be endorsed and prioritized at a community level to adjust for social distancing. Repositories of local resources for emergency outreach in this time are also crucial. Telemedicine offers an innovative and safe way for health providers to care for people with disabilities to access many critical services without placing themselves or their caregivers at increased risk of contracting COVID-19. Communication strategies for critical information about resources for people with disabilities should be accessible. United States hospitals and government agencies should make allocation guideline proposals accessible to people with disabilities and incorporate bias training.

Last updated on hub: 12 October 2020

Essential long-term care workers commonly hold second jobs and double or triple duty caregiving roles

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society

Objectives: Long‐term care (LTC) facilities are particularly dangerous places for the spread of Covid‐19 given that they house vulnerable, high‐risk populations. Transmission‐based precautions to protect residents, employees, and families alike must account for potential risks posed by LTC workers’ second jobs and unpaid care work. This observational study describes the prevalence of their (1) second jobs and (2) unpaid care work for dependent children and/or adult relatives (double‐ and triple‐duty caregiving) overall and by occupational group (registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, or certified nursing assistants). Design: A descriptive, secondary analysis of data collected as part of the final wave of the Work, Family and Health Study. Setting: Thirty nursing home facilities located throughout the northeastern United States. Participants: A subset of 958 essential, facility‐based LTC workers involved in direct patient care. Measurements: This paper presents information on LTC workers’ demographic characteristics, health, features of their LTC occupation, additional paid work, wages, and double‐ or triple‐duty caregiving roles. Results: The majority of LTC workers were certified nursing assistants, followed by licensed practical nurses and registered nurses. Overall, over 70% of these workers agreed or strongly agreed with the following statement: “When you are sick, you still feel obligated to come into work.” One‐sixth had a second job, where they worked an average of 20 hours per week, and over 60% held double‐ or triple‐duty caregiving roles. Additional paid work and unpaid care work characteristics did not significantly differ by occupational group, although the prevalence of second jobs was highest and accompanying work hours were longest among certified nursing assistants. Conclusion: LTC workers commonly hold second jobs along with double‐ and triple‐duty caregiving roles. To slow the spread of Covid‐19, both the paid and unpaid activities of these employees warrant consideration in the identification of appropriate clinical, policy, and informal supports.

Last updated on hub: 30 April 2020

Essential training

Skills for Care

This webinar covers essential training and guidance, training for regulated professionals and funding available and how to access it. It identifies training that remains a priority to ensure there is a skilled and competent workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic, and which is supported by the CQC. The webinar also highlights the funding available, and the endorsed training providers, to support adult social care providers with staff training needs during the pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 29 June 2020

ESSS Outline: Covid-19, social isolation and loneliness

This summary provides an overview of recent evidence relating to: Covid-19, social isolation and loneliness. A search for academic research and grey literature identified a range of literature discussing isolation and loneliness, including the mental and physical effects they have, particularly around older people. Literature also suggests interventions that can help mitigate the health and mental health impact of loneliness. However, it found the quality of evidence for the majority of interventions is generally weak. Searches identified material relating to the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdown in the UK, as well as studies from isolated, confined and extreme environments, and from other pandemics around the world.

Last updated on hub: 11 May 2020

Ethical challenges for social workers during Covid-19: a global perspective

International Federation of Social Workers

This report summarises the findings of an international study of the ethical challenges faced by social workers during the Covid-19 pandemic, undertaken during 6th-18th May 2020. 607 responses from 54 countries were received via an online survey, additional interviews and local surveys. Six key themes relating to social workers’ ethical challenges and responses were identified: creating and maintaining trusting, honest and empathic relationships via phone or internet with due regard to privacy and confidentiality, or in person with protective equipment; prioritising service user needs and demands, which are greater and different due to the pandemic, when resources are stretched or unavailable and full assessments often impossible; balancing service user rights, needs and risks against personal risk to social workers and others, in order to provide services as well as possible; deciding whether to follow national and organisational policies, procedures or guidance (existing or new) or to use professional discretion in circumstances where the policies seem inappropriate, confused or lacking; acknowledging and handling emotions, fatigue and the need for selfcare, when working in unsafe and stressful circumstances; and using the lessons learned from working during the pandemic to rethink social work in the future. The study concludes that Covid-19 and measures to control and prevent its spread have restricted the services and responsibilities usually carried out by social workers, while generating new needs and demands. Social workers have both struggled and worked creatively to meet needs in risky and uncertain situations, and to respect people’s rights to privacy and involvement in important decisions about their lives.

Last updated on hub: 23 September 2020