COVID-19 resources

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Using technology to support the people you care for

Skills for Care

For many vulnerable people who receive care, COVID-19 and the lockdown mean a dramatic reduction in activities and family contact. Staff may also have less free time to spend with the people they support as things change. It is critical to minimise the impact for users of services and their families. This webinar – co-delivered with Digital Social Care – explores how technology can offer some help to connect people and to bring ‘outside experiences’ in.

Last updated on hub: 29 June 2020

Using technology to support your staff and each other

Skills for Care

This webinar – co-delivered with Digital Social Care – explores how technology can be used to help with common problems such as rota-ing, communications, information sharing, peer networking and emotional support. It provides examples and links to practical examples of where these types of tech solutions are already being used, as well as highlighting where free or low cost tech is currently available.

Last updated on hub: 29 June 2020

Utilising a virtual community to practice community work theory during COVID-19 lockdown in South Africa

Journal of Practice Teaching and Learning

In this practice note, I highlight the challenges social work practice lecturers overcame during a national lockdown midst the COVID-19 pandemic in South Africa whilst converting face to face teaching on community work to the online environment. I discuss how a fictitious virtual community was created, enabling students to apply the theoretical knowledge on community work from the practice module. I share the practical application on how students were able to ‘do’ community work in a virtual community and what we as a team of social work practice educators learned as a result.

Last updated on hub: 05 February 2021

VacciNation: exploring vaccine confidence with people from African, Bangladeshi, Caribbean and Pakistani backgrounds living in England: insight report

Healthwatch England

Findings from a study to better understand current trends in vaccine barriers among Black and Asian people. The report is based on in-depth conversations and online exercises with 95 participants from African, Bangladeshi, Caribbean, and Pakistani ethnicity over a period of five weeks during March and April. Attitudes to the vaccine are incredibly personal and we cannot make any broad conclusions about whole communities from our findings. We have drawn out some key themes to support improvement in the way the NHS and other public health professionals communicate with the public. These are: individual agency and an ability for a person to act on their own behalf is important in relation to the COVID-19 vaccine; independence of institutions and those who speak for them; participants associated levels of trust with the level of real-world experience an individual had; participants linked the notions of transparency and trust together; targeted messaging can have the opposite to the intended impact; conscious and unconscious trust needs to be considered.

Last updated on hub: 08 June 2021

Vaccine effectiveness of the first dose of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 and BNT162b2 against SARS-CoV-2 infection in residents of Long-Term Care Facilities (VIVALDI study)

medRxiv

Background: The effectiveness of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in frail older adults living in Long-Term Care Facilities (LTCFs) is uncertain. We estimated protective effects of the first dose of ChAdOx1 and BNT162b2 vaccines against infection in this population. Methods: Cohort study comparing vaccinated and unvaccinated LTCF residents in England, undergoing routine asymptomatic testing (8 December 2020 - 15 March 2021). We estimated the relative hazard of PCR-positive infection using Cox proportional hazards regression, adjusting for age, sex, prior infection, local SARS-CoV-2 incidence, LTCF bed capacity, and clustering by LTCF. Results: Of 10,412 residents (median age 86 years) from 310 LTCFs, 9,160 were vaccinated with either ChAdOx1 (6,138; 67%) or BNT162b2 (3,022; 33%) vaccines. A total of 670,628 person days and 1,335 PCR-positive infections were included. Adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) for PCR-positive infection relative to unvaccinated residents declined from 28 days following the first vaccine dose to 0·44 (0·24, 0·81) at 28-34 days and 0·38 (0·19, 0·77) at 35-48 days. Similar effect sizes were seen for ChAdOx1 (aHR 0·32 [0·15-0·66] and BNT162b2 (aHR 0·35 [0·17, 0·71]) vaccines at 35-48 days. Mean PCR cycle threshold values were higher, implying lower infectivity, for infections ≥28 days post-vaccination compared with those prior to vaccination (31·3 vs 26·6, p<0·001). Interpretation: The first dose of BNT162b2 and ChAdOx1 vaccines was associated with substantially reduced SARS-CoV-2 infection risk in LTCF residents from 4 weeks to at least 7 weeks.

Last updated on hub: 20 April 2021

Vaccine effectiveness of the first dose of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 and BNT162b2 against SARS-CoV-2 infection in residents of long-term care facilities in England (VIVALDI): a prospective cohort study

The Lancet

Background The effectiveness of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in older adults living in long-term care facilities is uncertain. We investigated the protective effect of the first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca non-replicating viral-vectored vaccine (ChAdOx1 nCoV-19; AZD1222) and the Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA-based vaccine (BNT162b2) in residents of long-term care facilities in terms of PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection over time since vaccination. […] Findings: 10 412 care home residents aged 65 years and older from 310 LTCFs were included in this analysis. The median participant age was 86 years (IQR 80–91), 7247 (69·6%) of 10412 residents were female, and 1155 residents (11·1%) had evidence of previous SARS-CoV-2 infection. 9160 (88·0%) residents received at least one vaccine dose, of whom 6138 (67·0%) received ChAdOx1 and 3022 (33·0%) received BNT162b2. Between Dec 8, 2020, and March 15, 2021, there were 36352 PCR results in 670628 person-days, and 1335 PCR-positive infections (713 in unvaccinated residents and 612 in vaccinated residents) were included. Adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) for PCR-positive infection relative to unvaccinated residents declined from 28 days after the first vaccine dose to 0·44 (95% CI 0·24–0·81) at 28–34 days and 0·38 (0·19–0·77) at 35–48 days. Similar effect sizes were seen for ChAdOx1 (adjusted HR 0·32, 95% CI 0·15–0·66) and BNT162b2 (0·35, 0·17–0·71) vaccines at 35–48 days. Mean PCR Ct values were higher for infections that occurred at least 28 days after vaccination than for those occurring before vaccination (31·3 [SD 8·7] in 107 PCR-positive tests vs 26·6 [6·6] in 552 PCR-positive tests; p<0·0001). Interpretation: Single-dose vaccination with BNT162b2 and ChAdOx1 vaccines provides substantial protection against infection in older adults from 4–7 weeks after vaccination and might reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission. However, the risk of infection is not eliminated, highlighting the ongoing need for non-pharmaceutical interventions to prevent transmission in long-term care facilities.

Last updated on hub: 07 July 2021

Valuing those who care for others – the ‘SafeSpace’ Project at Kibble

Scottish Journal of Residential Child Care

Maintaining and enhancing staff wellbeing is increasingly recognised as an essential aspect of effective residential child care. Children and young people receive the best care from adults who themselves are well supported. This article provides an overview of the ‘SafeSpace’ project at Kibble, which offers individual sessions to care staff to allow opportunities for reflection and emotional support within their role. Lessons learned from the project thus far, and questions for wider consideration across the sector are also discussed.

Last updated on hub: 27 November 2020

Valuing voices in Wales: protecting rights through the pandemic and beyond

National Development Team for Inclusion

This report brings together findings from a survey, carried out in June 2020, of 72 advocates working across Wales. Advocates shared urgent concerns which reflect not only the restrictions that the pandemic brought but also the wider societal and cultural belief systems and attitudes towards people who are supported through advocacy. There are widespread and profound concerns about the impact of the pandemic on the human rights of people who use health and social care services. Responses indicated frequent failures to provide people with the support to which they are legally entitled, increasing risks of abuse and harm and weaknesses in the safeguards needed to prevent and address these. Key findings show that: eighty-five percent (85%) of advocates felt the human rights of the people they support were not being fully upheld; a third (33%) of advocates had experienced Do Not Attempt Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation orders (DNACPRs) being placed on the people they support without any regard to the person’s feelings, wishes, values or beliefs, and without formal capacity assessments or consultation with family; over forty percent (43%) of advocates reported care providers had stopped all visitors and almost a third (31%) reported that people were being confined to their rooms; over a quarter of advocates (28%) experienced a care provider seeking to prevent access to advocates despite rights to advocacy remaining unchanged; while some people find digital communication can be as effective as meeting in person, for most people it is not comparable. It means that they are not getting the support they need and this risks further entrenching health inequalities.

Last updated on hub: 16 December 2020

Valuing voices: protecting rights through the pandemic and beyond

VoiceAbility

This report offers insight into the challenges people face having their rights upheld and being listened to during the Covid-19 pandemic. These challenges are not always new but have been exacerbated by the restrictions in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The report brings together findings from a survey of 435 advocates working across England and Wales that was carried out in June 2020. Advocates shared urgent concerns which reflect not only the restrictions that the pandemic brought but also the wider attitudes towards people who have additional support needs. The right to advocacy remained unchanged by the Coronavirus Act and restrictions enacted by government. However, the survey findings suggest that while for some people this meant good support continued, for others the restrictions meant they could not get the support they needed, when they needed it – three quarters (76%) of advocates felt the human rights of the people they support were not being fully upheld. Nearly a third (31%) of advocates had seen Do Not Attempt Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation orders (DNACPRs) being placed on the people they support without regard to the person’s feelings, wishes, values or beliefs, and without formal capacity assessments or consultation with family. One in five reported that people were being blanketly denied healthcare. Over a quarter of advocates experienced a care provider trying to prevent access to advocacy. Advocates also highlighted a lack of care planning, discharge planning, and support. The report sets out concrete recommendations for government, health and social care providers and local authorities, calling for a culture change and a reinvigorated focus on human rights that recognises individual choice and control.

Last updated on hub: 21 October 2020

Verification of Expected Death (VOED) with clinical remote support: guidance for adult social care workers: consultation version

Skills for Care

This guidance is primarily for adult social care providers in residential and community settings, outlining the process and procedures for verifying an expected death with remote clinical support. It is designed to support decision making within local systems and explains how to prepare to verify an expected death with remote support. The Coronavirus Act 2020 and recent government guidance makes special arrangements for verifying an expected death with clinical remote support in a community setting, such as care homes, supported living accommodation or when a person receives care in their own home. The guide covers: what providers and managers need to think about beforehand to inform decision making about verifying expected death with clinical remote support and who to involve; information to support decision making of whether care staff will verify a person’s death with remote support; the process of verifying an expected death with remote support; what to consider after the process, care of the deceased and the family and the importance of employee wellbeing and support for those involved, including sources of support.

Last updated on hub: 06 July 2020

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