COVID-19 resources on Infection control

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Over-exposed and under-protected: the devastating impact of COVID-19 on black and minority ethnic communities in Great Britain

Runnymede Trust, The

Findings of a survey exploring black and minority ethnic (BME) peoples experiences of the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown, and focusing on the impact of the pandemic on their physical and mental health, work, finances, relationships, childcare and schooling, and their understanding of the governments COVID-19 social and economic measures. The 2,585 adults (aged 18+) sampled for this survey included a ‘boost’ sample of 538 BME adults, taking the overall sample of BME respondents to 750 in the whole survey. Black and minority ethnic people are over-represented in COVID-19 severe illness and deaths - pre-existing racial and socioeconomic inequalities, resulting in disparities in co-morbidities between ethnic groups, have been amplified by COVID-19. The survey shows that BME people face greater barriers in shielding from coronavirus as a result of the types of employment they hold; they make greater use of public transport, are more likely to live in overcrowded and multigenerational households, and are less likely to be given appropriate PPE (personal protective equipment) at work. The survey also finds that BME groups are much less aware of the governments life-saving public health messaging around Covid-19, leaving them under-protected and vulnerable to coronavirus. The report makes a number of recommendations, including ensuring employers carry out risk assessments for staff with vulnerable characteristics, including black and minority ethnic backgrounds; ensuring that all key workers in public-facing roles have access to adequate PPE; prioritising a tailored Find, Test, Trace, Isolate and Support (FTTIS) programme ensuring vulnerable BME communities are identified and supported; strengthening the social security safety net; and increasing Statutory Sickness Pay and widen eligibility.

Last updated on hub: 06 August 2020

Overview of adult social care guidance on coronavirus (COVID-19)

Department of Health and Social Care

Brings together information for adult social care providers on COVID-19 guidance and support. The resource covers help with infection prevention and control; what to do when you suspect an outbreak; reporting an outbreak; caring for patients discharged from hospital or another social care facility; visits to care homes and other care settings; information for providers of care in supported living and domiciliary settings; how to get social care workers and people in care homes tested; managing care workers during COVID-19; securing PPE and related supplies; help for holders of direct payments, commissioners and care providers; information for social care providers on mental health and wellbeing and financial support; Capacity Tracker and guidance on using it; information for unpaid carers; easements of the Care Act; COVID-19 ethical framework for adult social care; caring for people who are protected by safeguards under the Mental Capacity Act 2005, including the deprivation of liberty safeguards; steps to take following a coronavirus-related death of a person who worked in adult social care. [First published 25 August 2020; Last updated 1 April 2021]

Last updated on hub: 27 August 2020

Ownership and COVID-19 in care homes for older people: a living systematic review of outbreaks, infections, and mortalities


Background The adult social care sector is being increasingly outsourced to for-profit providers, but the impacts of privatisation on service quality and resident outcomes are unclear. During the COVID-19 pandemic, for-profit providers have been accused of failing their residents by prioritising profits over care, prevention, and caution, which has been reported to result in a higher prevalence of COVID-19 infections and deaths in for-profit care homes. Although many of these reports are anecdotal or based on news reports, there is a growing body of academic research investigating ownership variation across COVID-19 outcomes, which has not been systematically appraised and synthesised. Objectives To identify, appraise, and synthesise the available research on ownership variation in COVID-19 outcomes (outbreaks, infections, deaths, shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) and staff) across for-profit, public, and non-profit care homes for older people, and to update the findings as new research becomes available. Design Living systematic review. Methods This review was prospectively registered with Prospero (CRD42020218673). The researchers searched 17 databases and performed forward and backward citation tracking of all included studies. Search results were screened and reviewed in duplicate. Risk of bias (RoB) was assessed in duplicate according to the COSMOS-E guidance. The results were synthesised according to RoB, model adjustment, and country context and visualised using harvest plots. Results Twenty-eight studies across five countries were included, with 75% of included studies conducted in the Unites States. For-profit ownership was not consistently associated with a higher probability of COVID-19 outbreaks across included studies. However, there was compelling evidence of worse COVID-19 outcomes following an outbreak; with for-profit care homes having higher rates of accumulative infections and deaths. For-profit providers were also associated with shortages in PPE, which may have contributed to the higher incidence of infections and deaths. Chain affiliation was often found to be correlated with higher risk of outbreaks, but not consistently associated with an elevated number of deaths and infections. Private equity ownership was not consistently associated with worse COVID-19 outcomes. Conclusion For-profit status was a consistent risk factor for higher cumulative COVID-19 infections and deaths. Thus, ownership among providers may be a key modifiable factor which can be regulated to improve health outcomes in vulnerable populations and reduce health disparities. This review will be updated as new research becomes published, which may change the conclusion of the synthesis.

Last updated on hub: 25 February 2021

Partners in care: resources to support meaningful visits

National Care Forum

This set of resources is designed to provide practical support to care homes and their relatives and loved ones to adopt the default position that care homes are open for visiting. Care homes must be supported to enable and welcome visits by families and friends, now and in the future. It is clear that we must find a way to resolve the challenge of visiting in care homes for the longer term; we are facing a world where we will have to live with COVID-19 for the foreseeable months and indeed years. This means reaching an agreed partnership position, with practical measures, rights and responsibilities that enables visiting long term rather than the current cycle of crisis short term approaches. The National Care Forum has worked with care providers and residents and relatives organisations to develop these Partners in Care resources to support meaningful visits. It includes: a Visiting Charter – sets out a shared set of rights and responsibilities; a Visiting Pledge – covers key commitments that all parties can sign up to; and useful practical resources to support the charter and the pledge.

Last updated on hub: 22 March 2021

Patients living with dementia who ‘walk with purpose or intent’ in the COVID-19 crisis

NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) West

This evidence summary looks at how to manage care home residents with dementia who ‘walk with purpose or intent’ such that infection prevention measures are not breached during an epidemic such as COVID-19. It identified clear guidance from the British Geriatric Society (BGS) on the approach of care home staff for residents with dementia who ‘walk with purpose or intent’ during the COVID 19 crisis. The guidance focuses on isolation of suspected cases and behavioural approach to ameliorating potential unsafe activities of residents. The British Psychological Society’s Faculty of the Psychology of Older People also describes primary preventative and secondary reactive behavioural approaches that can be used to care for residents during the COVID 19 outbreak.

Last updated on hub: 10 June 2020

People and places in London most vulnerable to COVID-19 and its social and economic consequences

New Policy Institute

This report identifies groups of people whose socio-economic status puts them at higher risk of either catching COVID-19 or passing it on, experiencing harm to their health and wellbeing during lockdown; or experiencing harm as both lockdown and the emergency measures introduced to alleviate it, are lifted. The report is divided into four sections, looking at people and households who face higher risks as a result of: COVID-19 itself and the wider pandemic; the economic recession; housing insecurity; and having pre-existing additional support needs. Built around a set of statistical indicators, the report offers a picture of the scale of vulnerability and how it varies across London boroughs. Half the indicators show the background (pre-pandemic) position and half show how things have changed since March 2020. Four of the 29 indicators are restricted to London (or London subregions) while one is national. The report’s main message is that the vulnerabilities flowing from the pandemic and the accompanying recession affect more and different people than those who are usually seen as vulnerable. While the need to protect older people from the virus remains paramount, the report concludes that the pandemic and recession should be seen as a crisis for people of working-age, especially those in the 20s, 30s and 40s, and their children.

Last updated on hub: 10 March 2021

Personal assistants eligible for vaccination as part of national priority group two: frontline social care workers

Local Government Association

These questions and answers document has been developed with leading organisations and individual councils working to support take-up of vaccination among frontline social care workers. To be eligible for vaccination in the national priority group two, personal assistants need to be caring for someone who is clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19, and/or has a defined underlying health condition leading to greater risk of disease or mortality from COVID-19, and/or is of advanced age (85+); this is set out in detail in the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) published on 14 January 2021. Topics areas include: eligibility and the process for getting vaccinated; data sharing; employment-related questions; unpaid carers; and vaccinations for people being cared for by a PA.

Last updated on hub: 03 March 2021

Personal assistants returning from shielding

Mark Bates Ltd

Fact sheet offering support to people who employ personal assistants with regards to their employee returning to work, following the lifting of shielding measures by the Government.

Last updated on hub: 04 August 2020

Personal protective equipment (PPE): care workers delivering homecare during the Covid-19 response

Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch

This national intelligence report provides insight into a current safety risk that the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) has identified, relating to the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) by care workers when visiting a patient at home. It documents how concerns raised by HSIB were responded to by Public Health England, the body responsible for the development of guidelines for the appropriate use of PPE. The report finds that there are multiple Covid-19 guidelines for different care sectors. PPE guidelines should be used in conjunction with other guidelines, such as infection control guidelines, so that care providers can develop protocols for care delivery. This is challenging when guidelines are updated, or new guidelines are issued and there is a risk that guidance may be missed. The report argues that there is an opportunity to introduce a document management system for guidelines to ensure that the latest information is available. This would involve the design of a usable navigation system so that all related guidelines relevant to a particular care sector are visible and can be checked for completeness.

Last updated on hub: 01 September 2020

Personal protective equipment (PPE): resource for care workers delivering homecare (domiciliary care) during sustained COVID-19 transmission in the UK

Public Health England

Guidance for those working in domiciliary care providing information on the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) during sustained coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission in the UK. It explains how PPE guidance applies to the homecare (domiciliary care) setting and is drawn from full infection prevention and control (IPC) and PPE guidance. The guidance is primarily for care workers and providers delivering care in visiting homecare, extra care housing and live-in homecare settings. [Published 27/04/202. Updated 7/10/2020]

Last updated on hub: 28 April 2020

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