Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for social care

social care
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Advice for councils and care providers as the Government works to delay the spread of COVID-19. There is specific residential care, supported living, home care and social distancing guidance.

Full detail: Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for social care

Related: Helping to prevent infection: A quick guide for managers and staff in care homes

Measures to prevent infections in care homes are vital. Managers and staff in care homes will find this guide very useful as a reminder of the most important methods of preventing infection.

The guide covers:

  • Hand decontamination
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Sharps
  • Waste disposal
  • Education and information

Adult social care in the UK

The Nuffield Trust has published Adult social care in the four countries of the UK. This explainer looks at key themes in social care around funding, eligibility and ‘offer’ in each of the four UK countries, while considering the direction of current reform efforts.

Full detail: Adult social care in the four countries of the UK.

See also: Social care across the four countries of the UK: what can we learn?| Nuffield Trust blog

Securing the future of Social Care funding

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This report sets out the issues facing disability organisations and why it is important that the government puts in place a sustainable funding plan. It calls on the government to not delay reform of the social care sector any longer and for policy makers to work with the sector to ensure community resources are responsive and preventative.

Adult Social Care And Wellbeing Policy In The Four Nations Of The UK

Adult Social Care And Wellbeing Policy In The Four Nations Of The UK | University of Sheffield 

This review summarises main policy developments on wellbeing in the field of adult social care since 2000 in the four nations of the UK. It is the first paper from the Sustainable Care: Connecting People and Systems programme from the Centre for International Research on Care, Labour & Equalities (CIRCLE) at the University of Sheffield.

The programme’s overarching objective is to advance understanding of sources of economic and social sustainability in care, especially how wellbeing outcomes can be achieved for care users, their families and carers and paid care workers.

Health and social care experiences

This quarterly briefing aims to provide health and social care professionals with a summary of the issues raised with Healthwatch

Between July and September over 10,500 people shared their experiences of using health and social care with Healthwatch. This briefing looks at 128 reports published by local Healthwatch and aims to provide health and social care professionals with a summary of the issues people have raised with us.

What issues does the briefing look at?

  • Emerging themes across primary care, hospital care, social care and mental health. For example, the importance of good communication when GP services are changing and people’s mental health and physical health not being given equal consideration in A&E.
  • In focus – the support available for people with incontinence and how services can help by making sure patients can easily access the continence products they need.
  • Spotlight on experiences – the challenges people from diverse ethnic communities can face when using health and care services.

Full briefing: What have people been telling us?  A summary of our evidence – July to September 2019 | Healthwatch

The costs of smoking to the English National Health System

Ash| September 2019 | The costs of smoking to the English National Health System

Ash the smoking support charity have commissioned research to measure the impact of smoking on the need for social care. This updated  previous analyses of the cost of smoking on social care; and a multi-wave analysis of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA) and the Health Survey for England was undertaken.
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The analysis finds that 670,000 people have care needs as a result of smoking:
• 25,000 adults receive social care from their local authority because they
smoke or smoked;
• 5,000 adults receive social care they pay for themselves because they smoke
or smoked;
• 345,000 adults receive informal social care because they smoke or
smoked; and a further
• 300,000 adults have unmet care needs because they smoke or smoked

The costs of the additional care needed due to smoking are high to both local authorities
and smokers themselves:
• The cost of smoking-related social care to local authorities is £720 million
a year
• The cost of smoking-related social care to individuals who pay for their
own care is £160 million a year (Source: Ash)

The costs of smoking to the English National Health System

In the news:

OnMedica Care needs come earlier for smokers


Who cares? The Financialisation in social care

IPPR | September 2019 | Who cares? The Financialisation in social care

The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has published a briefing paper: Who cares? Financialisation in social care

Recent data from IPPR shows that 84 per cent of beds are now provided by the private sector, up from an estimated 82 per cent in 2015. The IPPR argues that: 

  • Social care’s reliance on private bed provision is growing
  • Larger providers – particularly those funded by private equity firms – are becoming more dominant.
  • A growing reliance on private provision could mean lower quality care

Within the paper, the IPPR calls for a bold set of policy interventions to arrest the growth of debt-fuelled private social care provision and oversee the existing sector. This should include:

  1.  the creation of a powerful national financial care regulator – OfCare – to oversee the financial regulation of systemically important care providers
  2.  a new requirement that ensures all state-funded providers of care maintain a ‘safe’ level of reserves and demonstrate they are paying their fair share of tax in the UK
  3. a commitment by government to build the 75,000 beds needed to by 2030 through
    borrowing worth £7.5 billion
  4.  the care for these homes should either be provided by the state or by innovative not-for-profit providers, building on the success of the ‘Preston Model’.

Full report available at IPPR