COVID-19 resources on Infection control

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Novel coronavirus (COVID19) standard operating procedure: COVID-19 vaccine deployment programme: frontline social care workers (JCVI Priority Cohort 2)

NHS England

This standard operating procedure (SOP) outlines the process for facilitating COVID-19 vaccination for frontline social care workers (excluding those working in care homes for older adults) as defined by the JCVI. This includes the identification of eligible care workers and the roles and responsibilities within local systems for enabling and supporting care workers to be vaccinated. The SOP also outlines how Hospital Hubs, Vaccination Centres and Local Vaccination Services should work to deliver COVID-19 vaccination to frontline social care workers at pace. It covers how they should work in partnership to match vaccination capacity to meet demand, support booking, on the day arrangements and data capture to monitor uptake. It does not cover the clinical delivery of the vaccine, which is covered in separate guidance.

Last updated on hub: 19 January 2021

Nursing home design and COVID-19: balancing infection control, quality of life, and resilience

Journal of the American Medical Directors Association

Many nursing home design models can have a negative impact on older people and these flaws have been compounded by Coronavirus Disease 2019 and related infection control failures. This article proposes that there is now an urgent need to examine these architectural design models and provide alternative and holistic models that balance infection control and quality of life at multiple spatial scales in existing and proposed settings. Moreover, this article argues that there is a convergence on many fronts between these issues and that certain design models and approaches that improve quality of life, will also benefit infection control, support greater resilience, and in turn improve overall pandemic preparedness.

Last updated on hub: 07 December 2020

Older people’s nonphysical contacts and depression during the COVID-19 lockdown

Gerontologist

Background and Objectives: With the goal of slowing down the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, restrictions to physical contacts have been taken in many countries. We examine to what extent intergenerational and other types of nonphysical contacts have reduced the risk of increased perceived depressive feelings during the lockdown for people aged 50+. Research Design and Methods: We implemented an online panel survey based on quota sampling in France, Italy, and Spain in April 2020, about 1 month after the start of the lockdown. Our analyses are based on logistic regression models and use post-stratification weights. Results: About 50% of individuals aged 50+ felt sad or depressed more often than usual during the lockdown in the 3 considered countries. Older people who increased or maintained unchanged nonphysical contacts with noncoresident individuals during the lockdown were at a lower risk of increased perceived depressive feelings compared to those who experienced a reduction in nonphysical contacts. The beneficial effect of nonphysical contacts was stronger for intergenerational relationships. The effects were similar by gender and stronger among individuals aged 70+, living in Spain and not living alone before the start of the lockdown. Discussion and Implications: In the next phases of the COVID-19 pandemic, or during any future similar pandemic, policy makers may implement measures that balance the need to reduce the spread of the virus with the necessity of allowing for limited physical contacts. Social contacts at a distance may be encouraged as a means to keep social closeness, while being physically distant.

Last updated on hub: 06 March 2021

On site testing for adult social care services

Department of Health and Social Care

This guidance explains how adult social care services can prepare and manage on-site lateral flow testing. This can include testing of people who work in social care; professionals visiting a social care service for work; people getting care and support from social care services; people visiting someone who gets care and support. Lateral flow antigen testing involves processing a throat and nasal swab sample with an extraction fluid and a rapid lateral flow device (LFT). The rapid LFT detects a COVID-19 antigen that is produced when a person is infectious with COVID-19. If this antigen is present, then a coloured strip will appear which indicates a positive result. Lateral flow testing is not a fool proof solution: it should be seen as an addition to PPE and other IPC measures and must not be seen as a way of relaxing their use. The guidance covers: testing process overview; testing technology and preparations; and testing instructions (prepare testing area, check-in the person being tested, sample collection, sample analysis, result analysis, process and record results, and results guidance).

Last updated on hub: 08 March 2021

One year report on the status on the non-devolved provisions of the Coronavirus Act 2020: March 2021

Department of Health and Social Care

One-year status report on which powers in the Coronavirus Act 2020 are currently active. The Act was designed to protect public health in various ways, with the ultimate aim of facilitating sufficient preparation for a worst-case scenario. The Act ensured that the NHS had the capacity to deal with the peak of the virus by allowing the temporary registration of nurses and other healthcare professionals. It also protected critical societal functions and ensured that they were still able to continue, such as providing courts with the ability to use video technology. The Act meant that we were able to ensure effective support packages such as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and Self-Employed Income Support Scheme were in place for people and businesses alike. To achieve this aim, the Act enables action in five key areas: increasing the available health and social care workforce; easing and reacting to the burden on frontline staff; supporting people, providing access financial support when they need it; containing and slowing the virus; and managing the deceased with respect and dignity.

Last updated on hub: 23 March 2021

Opening schools safely in the COVID-19 era: school social workers’ experiences and recommendations: a research brief for policymakers

University of California

This policy brief presents data from a national survey of school social workers (SSWs) exploring the impacts of COVID-19 school disruptions in the United States. It highlights the need to address hunger, housing instability, health, mental health and other challenges that a high proportion of students are experiencing, especially low-income students. From a capacity perspective, SSWs in the study report that sizable proportions of students are suffering from difficulties due to discrimination, family discord, child abuse, language difficulties, and community violence; SSWs are called to perform the same Herculean tasks that face other educators and school staff in this pandemic but there are concerns that this work is being done with few resources, outside supports, or governmental guidance; greater supports, like the personal protective equipment (PPE) given to health care professions, are needed for educational staff and social workers who are on the front lines of the pandemic. The paper argues that given SSWs’ ecological view and historical commitment to under-served communities, their voices should be heard in planning school reopening. Based on the findings from the survey, the brief recommends the following actions: create a rapid-response team of school professionals from multiple fields to develop a systemic, national response to support schools; prioritise the response to the most hard-hit schools and communities; develop three evidence-driven national plans, one for in-person instruction, one for online, and one for a hybrid; provide additional supports and resources, including more trained social workers sent to the most stressed schools and communities.

Last updated on hub: 20 August 2020

Opening schools safely in the COVID-19 era: school social workers’ experiences and recommendations: technical report

University of California

This report summarises initial findings from a national survey of school social workers’ (SSWs) (n=1,275) practising across the United States. Findings highlight serious challenges facing schools, school staff, and students. Some of these challenges are specifically related to educational goals, but many are related to basic needs that are a prerequisite to academic and social emotional learning. Many SSWs reported having limited to no contact with some of their students because they couldn’t establish a connection with them during the shutdown; they expressed significant concerns about the motivation and engagement of the 81% of students with whom they did work; and reported that a majority of their students and families had profound, immediate, and urgent needs related to food insufficiency (62.4%), housing instability (42.8), health issues (61.6%), individualised student tutoring (62.3%), and mental health services (75.7%). While findings speak to the dynamism and creativity of SSWs in this pandemic, findings also revealed many troubling and serious issues that need immediate attention as schools plan how to re-open in the fall. Implications for professional development, district supports, university training, and a national effort to reconnect a potential “lost generation of students” are discussed and outlined. The report makes a series of recommendations, including a call to action for the various school social work organisations to join together to help SSWs and their school communities respond effectively as the pandemic continues to impact on the academic and social experience of children.

Last updated on hub: 20 August 2020

Our plan to rebuild: The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy

Cabinet Office

This document describes the progress the UK has made to date in tackling the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, and sets out the plans for moving to the next phase of its response to the virus. The strategy sets out a roadmap to easing existing measures and lift restrictions. It also provides details of the fourteen supporting programmes of work that will be delivered by the Government to achieve this. These include work to support care homes during the pandemic and strengthen the protections against infection of care home residents.

Last updated on hub: 08 June 2020

Outcomes in French nursing homes that implemented staff confinement with residents

Question: Was self-confinement of staff members with residents in French nursing homes during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic associated with better outcomes related to COVID-19 compared with overall national outcomes? Findings: This cohort study including 17 nursing homes with staff self-confinement and 9513 nursing homes in a national survey found that nursing homes with staff self-confinement experienced lower mortality related to COVID-19 among residents and lower incidence of COVID-19 among residents and staff members than rates recorded in a national survey. Meaning: These findings suggest that self-confinement of nursing home staff members with residents may help protect residents from mortality related to COVID-19 and residents and staff from COVID-19 infection. Citation: Belmin J. et al. (2020). Coronavirus disease 2019 outcomes in French nursing homes that implemented staff confinement with residents. JAMA network open, 3(8), e2017533-e2017533.

Last updated on hub: 13 November 2020

Outreach during Covid-19: encouraging older people’s social connection using outdoor ‘Face mask pop-ups’

Ageing Better in Camden

During the Covid-19 pandemic, the Ageing Better in Camden (ABC) Outreach Team had to find new ways to proactively find and engage with the socially isolated older people who ‘no one knows’. This group includes individuals who may be reluctant to access formal activities, help and support. Between August and October, the Team held 18 pop-ups in 13 different locations around Camden and met 234 older people (109 men and 125 women). The Team plan their pop-up events to help meet both the practical and emotional needs of older people, including the need for social connection, which may have been brought about or exacerbated by the pandemic. The report documents this adapted outreach practice and sets out what the Outreach Team learnt at these events about some of the main challenges faced by older people as a result of Covid-19. Through pop-up encounters, the Team built up a picture of the substantial challenges faced by some older people as a result of Covid-19 including: a need for social contact; going out as an act of courage; barriers to interaction once out; disruption to social networks and support; exacerbation of trauma; loss of normal life and identity; difficulty accessing services; and fear and loss of hope.

Last updated on hub: 22 March 2021

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