COVID-19 resources for managers and leaders

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COVID-19 social care staff wellbeing

Local Government Association

A comprehensive pack of wellbeing information and resources to help health and care managers support the wellbeing of staff who may be working under exceptional pressure to do their jobs while at the same time dealing with their own personal situations and emotions.

Last updated on hub: 23 September 2020

The impact of the coronavirus (Covid-19) on people who work as social care personal assistants

King's College London

This study addresses the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the work of social care Personal Assistants supporting people in need of care and support. Drawing from a sample of 105 PAs, researchers were able to interview 41. The findings show that regardless of whether they were paid, unless they were themselves ‘shielding’ to protect themselves or a family member, nearly all PAs were helping others in some way on a voluntary basis. However, other than limited, general guidance from the government which was not always thought useful by PAs, there were few other reliable sources of information about the virus, or about practical arrangements such as when and where to get tested, to obtain Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and to learn safe practices. Most PAs wore masks, gloves, aprons and said it was likely to become routine practice for them now, but It was often difficult for them to obtain PPE. PAs were asked about what would be most helpful to them in responding and adapting to the Covid virus. Several suggestions were made, including ready access to sufficient quantities of good quality PPE; the implementation of easily accessible, reliable testing; effective mechanisms for contact tracing to help prevent the spread of the virus; a single source of contact for support and reliable and accurate advice; better pay, contracts and less precarious working conditions; and financial support to people who were unable to work, but were not being paid by the employer, and did not qualify for the government’s furlough scheme.

Last updated on hub: 23 September 2020

"Don't ever call us unskilled again!'': learning from the experience of support workers during Covid-19


This report is based on responses from the Gr8 Support Covid-19 snapshot survey which invited support workers across the country to capture their experiences, thoughts, ideas and learning during the pandemic and share these with the nation. The report captures how support workers responded during the pandemic with thoughtfulness, creativity and dedication; some key messages and 'must haves' for moving forward beyond the pandemic; the plea of support workers to be valued and recognised as essential and highly skilled members of the social care workforce, not just now but as society moves forward. Key messages in responding to the pandemic emerging from this study include: supported living settings need clear, timely guidance; coronavirus tests must be available in supported living settings; support each person out of lockdown in the way that is right for them; recognise and support the essential role of support workers at this time; recognise and support the role of families and unpaid carers; society needs to act responsibly as lockdown eases; keep building on the community spirit; and get ready for a possible second wave. More broadly, the report calls for valuing and investing in social care; supporting people to regain and experience flourishing lives; increase the pay of support workers to reflect their highly skilled, complex and diverse roles; and ensure the profile of support workers is understood and valued.

Last updated on hub: 23 September 2020

Covid-19 Insight: issue 4

Care Quality Commission

The report explores some of the learning about good practice in infection prevention and control, and shares some of the good examples in understanding how providers have worked together to tackle COVID-19. In particular, the report looks at good practice in infection prevention and control in three key settings: acute hospital trusts; care homes; and GP surgeries. It introduces the work CQC has carried out to understand provider collaboration; some early headlines from the work; and examples of good practice. The report also updates regular data including outbreaks and staff absences in homecare services; and numbers of deaths of people detained under the Mental Health Act.

Last updated on hub: 23 September 2020

From stabilisation to innovation: the response and redesign of TEC services during Covid-19

Telecare Services Association

This report contains the findings and recommendations from a 12-week programme of outreach by the Telecare Services Association (TSA) to the technology enabled care (TEC) sector, where 92% of all alarm services were contacted. The report offers a window into the world of the technology enabled care sector and how it has provided invaluable support to the wider health and care system during the early months of the response phase of the Covid-19 crisis. It captures a number of case studies across telecare and telehealth that demonstrates how the TEC sector mobilised to improve and redesign its services overnight for the good of the vulnerable in our communities. The findings show that TEC services could support the delivery of many elements within the Government’s Covid-19 recovery programmes. The report maps the findings and recommendations to individual sections of the Government’s Rebuild Plan. Key recommendations include a phased plan of action that focuses on: stabilising existing TEC services; how to best exploit proactive TEC services to shield the most vulnerable, increase care capacity and improve operating models; and embed and assure new service and technology interventions.

Last updated on hub: 23 September 2020

The other side of the coin: adult social care reform in a post-COVID world

County Councils Network

The purpose of this think piece is to help shape thinking around the social care green paper, to distil the experience of County Councils and identify some key principles which CCN’s member authorities believe should be taken on board by policy makers in determining the direction of future adult social care reform. These principles have been collated under four broad themes specifically designed to support policy-makers focused on getting the big picture right. The four themes encompass: 1) scope – taking full account of the wide range of adult social care services delivered by councils and ensuring reform fully considers working age adults as well as older people and hospital discharges; 2) infrastructure – considering the best ways to deliver an adult social care system which is of high quality, provides value for money, and fully engages communities; 3) resource – providing the right resources to help adult social care be commissioned effectively to meet the needs of local communities; improvement – putting in place the necessary framework to not only ensures quality but create an ongoing culture of continuous improvement which helps everyone to live their best lives for as long as possible. The report attempts to inverse traditional thinking. Rather than seeing how social care can be used to cushion a health-centric system, it asks the reader to instead see the other side of the coin – how social care can ideally reduce the need for contact with acute health services as far as possible and be seamlessly integrated into wider place-based communities as the central service which ensures every citizen is able to live their best life.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2020

Guidance of good practice relating to social distanced and hybrid family group conferences

Fulcrum Family Services

This document is designed to provide guidance of good practice to family group conference (FGC) managers and coordinators in risk assessing whether to conduct either a social distanced or hybrid family group conference (SDFGC or HFGC) within England. An SDFGC is an FGC meeting that is held while adhering to all necessary social distancing protocols and procedures in order to lower risks of contracting or spreading Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) among participants. An HFGC is an FGC that includes some participants who are participating virtually via technological means (e.g. video conferencing, or telephone participation), and some attending in person. The meeting will also adhere to all necessary social distancing protocols and procedures in order to lower risks of contracting or spreading Covid-19 among participants. Some information is provided in respect to the rest of the UK, but the Government information pertains mostly to England. This guidance does not provide definite answers as every service and local authority will have their own circumstances to consider including local infection rate, local guidance and organisational restrictions. However, it attempts to cover the necessary issues that need to be considered during risk assessing any SDFGC or HFGC which were known at the time of writing (29th June-17th August 2020). The situation is ever evolving, and therefore this guidance should be considered as a starting point – a service’s response to Covid-19 will likely in time also evolve beyond what has been considered thus far.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2020

Guidance for employers on core training for redeployed workers, temporary workers and volunteers

Scottish Social Services Council

This resource provides a practical approach and guidance for care settings that may require the use of redeployed workers, the introduction of temporary workers and volunteers due to the staffing challenges facing the sector as a result of the spread of COVID-19. Expectations for employees and volunteers may differ and this resource sets out the key messages employers need to think about and what needs to be in place to promote the safe delivery of services. It includes resources available for inducting workers into different care settings and provides guidance on training and learning available to help people develop the knowledge, skills and competence to support our most vulnerable. It is recognised that services will be subject to demands which will require different approaches to how they make use of staffing and other resources. This may include deploying staff from other services and recruiting temporary workers and volunteers. The document stresses that it is important that during the COVID-19 pandemic employers continue to maintain the wellbeing and safety of people using services. It is also notes that it is advisable to continue to check national websites for the most up to date advice and information as it continues to change.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2020

Adult social care: our COVID-19 winter plan 2020 to 2021

Department of Health and Social Care

This policy paper sets out the key elements of national support available for the social care sector for winter 2020 to 2021, as well as the main actions to take for local authorities, NHS organisations, and social care providers, including in the voluntary and community sector. It covers four themes: preventing and controlling the spread of infection in care settings; collaboration across health and care services; supporting people who receive social care, the workforce, and carers; and supporting the system. Each section sets out the Department of Health and Social Care’s offer of national support and the department’s expectations for adult social care providers alongside published guidance. The plan applies to all settings and contexts in which people receive adult social care. This includes people’s own homes, residential care homes and nursing homes, and other community settings.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2020

Social Care Sector COVID-19 Support Taskforce: final report, advice and recommendations

Department of Health and Social Care

Final report and recommendations of the Social Care Sector COVID-19 Support Taskforce. Eight advisory groups were established to explore specific areas of care, namely: black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities; carers; good practice, guidance and innovation; mental health and wellbeing; older people and people living with dementia; people with learning disabilities and autistic people; self-directed support; and workforce’ The report sets out the progress and learning from the first phase of the COVID-19 pandemic in informing advice and recommendations to government and the social care sector. The report also sets out the action that will need be taken to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in the sector, both for those who rely on care and support, and the social care workforce. It details how people can be enabled to live as safely as possible while maintaining contacts and activity that enhance the health and wellbeing of service users and family carers. The report and recommendations cover the key themes in the management of COVID-19 and social care, including personal protective equipment (PPE), testing, flu vaccine, workforce and carers, training, funding, evidence and guidance, communication, clinical support, movement of people between care and health settings, inspection and regulation, capacity, expertise and information, use of data and digital, and national, regional and local structures. In addition, the report looks at the Care Home Support Plan; the Adult Social Care Action Plan; managing community outbreaks and the response of social care; key themes emerging from the taskforce advisory groups; and planning for the next phase of the pandemic

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2020