Social Care News

20th June 2019 - Carers Break New Guidance

During Carers Week, we launched new guidance from SCIE and Carers UK on how social care and health commissioners and providers can extend and improve regular breaks for carers and the family and friends they support.

The guidance includes almost 30 practice examples of how organisations are using a wide range of resources and services to support carers to have a break: from hotels offering free stays – to GP prescriptions for breaks.

For more information see link


24th June 2019 - 46 % of unpaid carers unable to take a break in last five years

From SCIE, Carers UK and the Department of Health and Social Care
Commissioners and providers need to be more flexible and innovative in their approaches to respite and carers’ breaks
New guidance from the Social Care Institute for Excellence, in partnership with Carers UK, outlines how health and social care commissioners and providers can expand and improve regular breaks for families and friends who care for other adults.
Research by Carers UK shows 46% of unpaid carers were unable to get a break in the last five years, even though they wanted one. 'Carers’ breaks: guidance for commissioners and providers' calls for a whole-family approach to ensure that breaks are accessible, personalised and enjoyable for both the carer – and the person they care for.

For more information see link


24th June 2019 – CQC: Smiling matters: oral health care in care homes

Our new report shows what we found from a review on the state of oral health care in care homes across England.
Between October 2018 and January 2019 our dental inspectors attended 100 care homes inspections and spoke to many members of staff, people who use services and their families.

The report is what we found on those inspections, which includes examples of good, joined-up practice between care homes and dentists, although this was not common. This comes three years after the publication of NICE guidance on oral health in care homes.

Key findings include:
•The majority (52%) of care homes visited had no policy to promote and protect people’s oral health
•73% of residents’ care plans we reviewed only partly covered or did not cover oral health at all – homes looking after people with dementia being the most likely to have no plan in place
•Nearly half (47%) of care homes were not providing any staff training to support people’s daily oral healthcare
•17% of care homes said they did not assess people’s oral health on admission
The report includes six recommendations and calls for a cross-sector approach to overcome concerns raised through this review. The recommendations also include a call for mandatory staff training in oral care, oral health check-ups for all residents upon admission, better signposting to local dental services and the convening of a multi-agency group tasked with raising awareness among people living in care homes, their families and carers of the importance of day-to-day dental hygiene and the need for routine check-ups.

For more information see link


24th June 2019 - "Living longer and old-age dependency - what does the future hold?'

‘Living longer and old-age dependency – what does the future hold?’ the new data release from the ONS suggests that as we look at the impact of an ageing population we need to revisit the way we think about our ageing population and its impact on economic dependency.
Measures that include economic activity rather than age structures may provide a more meaningful picture of economic dependency.

The analysis suggests that greater economic activity among older people is an increasingly important factor in offsetting the impact of an older population on our future economy.

For more information see link


20th May 2019 - Blue Badge Eligibility Criteria Changes

Following a consultation in 2018 the government announced that it will be extending the Blue Badge eligibility criteria to include people with ‘hidden disabilities’ such as dementia, autism and a number of mental health conditions. These changes will come into effect on 30th August 2019.

The changes to include “hidden disabilities” is very much welcomed, but there is a concern that there won’t be enough blue badge parking spaces for all who need them.

For more information see link

15th May 2019 - The Care We Want

Clenton Farquharson MBE, chair of Think Local Act Personal, gave the following speech at ADASS Spring Seminar on the care that he wants. He paid tribute to the person-centred approach of his social worker and made a plea for delegates to remember their moral and legal duty to put people’s wellbeing front and centre.

For more information see link

18th March 2019 - Disservice to older and disabled people by delaying social care green paper

The Chancellor’s Spring Statement has announced further delays to funding and reform of social care. A three-year Spending Review will now align with the Autumn Budget two years since the government announced its intentions to publish a green paper.

The Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG) is calling on government to rethink and bring forward much needed reform.

While the government appears unable or unwilling to progress the green paper, says VODG, by contrast it is railroading through controversial reforms on mental capacity legislation. The swift passage of the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill proves that government can pick up the pace of reform – if it so chooses.

For more information see link

18th March 2019 - Disability services issue demand to Government on overnight payments

Long-running uncertainty about payments and funding for sleep in staff has created huge uncertainty in social care for many years. Current social care funding fails to fully recognise the contribution that staff make to improving people’s lives.
The Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG) representing charities that provide services for disabled people, today publishes a new position statement on the issue.

The statement outlines the national association’s “grave concerns” over the lack of clear regulations for the payment of overnight support. VODG warns that this will drive the social care market to move in uncoordinated ways and lead to “inconsistent commissioning and provision.”

VODG also calls for the government to set a new rate for sleep in payments, after full consultation with workers, employers, commissioners and other stakeholders.

For more information see link