skip to main content

Latest News

Covid Urgent PPE New   Gov Guidance Covid  

Covid Test 

  Covid Financial
             

June 2020

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 08.07.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below and includes updates from Public Health and the Infection Control Fund (non-residential services). Slides are available here. Thank you to all providers who attended this afternoon's Q&A session.
  1. Reminder: Infection Control Fund and Support for non-residential providers - A letter and grant agreement for the Infection Control Fund was issued last week to non-residential providers. If you have not received the email directly please check your admin@, info@ email addresses or with colleagues within the Company before emailing the Council. Please send the grant agreements back at your earliest opportunity so that we can process them for you. Additionally, the Infection Control Grant Template spreadsheet must be sent to the Council by the 17th July 2020. Please see our dedicated hub page for more information about the grant including ideas on what is and isn't acceptable use of the funds.
  1. Please see updated list of PPE suppliers for you to order from
  1. North East Essex - Frailty Unit:  How To Refer For A Virtual Consultation - The Frailty Unit at ESNEFT is now able to offer virtual consultations for care home residents.  If you believe any of your residents would benefit from a consultation please complete the attached referral form and send it to the Frailty Unit at chu-ftr.frailty@nhs.net.  You can also ring on 07557315024 to make a referral or discuss whether a consultation is appropriate. If you ring you would still need to follow up by sending an email along with a copy of the residents MAR chart. 
  1. Care homes in Mid Essex: As part of the national NHS initiative to offer more support to the care market, we are keen for all Care Homes in Mid Essex to register and activate NHSmail accounts as soon as possible. For those Care Homes that are not, please note that NHSmail allows the safe and secure exchange of confidential information between agencies and will be the preferred route for communications between your home and the NHS. Here is a letter from NHS MID Essex CCG summarising the benefits of using NHS Mail and requesting all care homes to register using their MHS mail accounts as this will be the only form of secure communication going forwards.
  1. ECC's local outbreak control plan - this draft outlines the plan for local outbreaks of COVID-19 in the Essex County Council area and how this works with regional and national systems for COVID-19 control.

 

Infection Control Fund and Support for non-residential providers (08.07.2020)

A letter and grant agreement for the Infection Control Fund was issued last week to non-residential providers. If you have not received the email directly please can you check your admin@, info@ email addresses or with colleagues within the Company before emailing the Council. Can you also check your junk email before contacting us as well. This should help to reduce the current volume of emails received within the Infection Control inbox and enable us to deal with the claims or issues arising from them more quickly. Thank you.

So far the Council has processed over 110 claims against the fund totalling over £750,000 in payments to you over the last week. However, this means that there is still over 250 non-residential branches that have received an email which haven't yet responded. Please can you send the grant agreements back at your earliest opportunity so that we can process them for you. Once we have received your grant agreement the form is being allocated to commence payment. The money payable should then reach your bank account within 5 working days. Please only contact the Council once a minimum of 5 working days have lapsed to also reduce email volumes.

If you have emailed the grant agreement back but disagreed with the number of service user figures stated it will take more time to process your claim because we will have to cross reference what you have advised us against our records and if agreed issue a new grant agreement to you.  

The Infection Control Grant Template spreadsheet must be sent to the Council by the 17th July 2020, please note that this is the only requirement due by this date. So far we have only had a handful back. Some providers are advising that they want to use the Infection Control Fund for the purchase of PPE items. Please note that this is not an acceptable use of the Infection Control Fund. We have published ideas on what is and isn't acceptable on the provider hub. If you as a provider have incurred additional expenditure in relation to PPE the Council may be able to support you via the COVID19 Response Fund

Please see our dedicated hub page for more information about the grant

For clarity the Infection Control money must be spent by the 23rd September 2020.

 

Today's Webinar and Q&A session (08.07.2020)

Today's webinar can be viewed below and you can download the slides here

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 07.07.2020

  1. Tomorrow's Covid-19 webinar and Q&A session - we aim to publish the webinar recording on this page by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. Regular testing in care homes - Regular testing (retesting) for care homes in England is being rolled out. This involves care homes testing staff weekly and residents every 28 days. Retesting will begin with care homes for the over-65s and those with dementia. Care homes will need to re-register on the care home portal to apply for retesting. Applications for retesting are now open for care homes caring for the over-65s and those with dementia. Retesting will be offered to other adult care homes from early August.
  1. The 'Live at Home -Proposed 2021 Framework' webinar is now live.  Please click the link to access this.  If you have any questions or feedback regarding the proposals, please post them on the Slido - details of how to access Slido are included within the webinar. We will be hosting a live question and answer event Thursday 9th July 2020 at 10am.
  1. Updated Government Guidance: Guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19 - details of what has changed can be found here
  1. Webinar to support care workers in carrying out mental health capacity assessments and swabbing. Next Thursday 16th July at 1.30pm. Details and how to join
  1. New survey launched for BAME care workers - Skills for Care (SFC) is launching a survey, and a series of webinars and peer coaching sessions, to find out more about the experiences of adult social care workers from a black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) background during COVID-19. SFC know that people from BAME backgrounds account for one in five of the social care workforce in England and research by Public Health England revealed that people of Chinese, Indian, Pakistani, Other Asian, Caribbean and Other Black ethnicity had between 10% and 50% higher risk of death from COVID-19 when compared to White British. This survey is just part of SFC's response to the impact of COVID-19 on our sector, and given the vital role the BAME workforce plays in day to day care of people in our communities, it is critical we know more. Find out more about the survey and how to take part here
  1. Webinar: redeployment of nurses - Join this interactive online event (9 July) to hear directly from the leaders of three systems to learn about their experience of nurse deployment.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 03.07.2020

  1. Thank you to all Care homes and Home-Care operators across Essex from Councillor John Spence - 

"I am just writing to thank you personally, and on behalf of Essex County Council, for your immense contribution over recent months.

I think it is now acknowledged that those who operate and work in care homes and domiciliary care operations have been unsung heroes. However, Essex County Council's officers have always held the sector in high regard, and all of us have an acute understanding of the challenges you continually face.

Those challenges have been intensified by the Covid crisis and we recognise that the crisis is not over. You have had to work under huge pressure, dealing with the emotional heart-break in seeing illness and death among residents and colleagues at unprecedented levels, while coping with the need to obtain, and then to keep wearing, PPE in new ways.  

Looking ahead we see new challenges and the ongoing uncertainty of what will happen next. So this is an ideal moment for me to reiterate my thanks for what you have done, and to express my appreciation for the contribution that the council's officers and I know you will be making in the future."

  1. Reminder: Care Home provider Infection Control Fund Schedule 3 returns due - As a reminder the Infection Control Fund Schedule 3 returns are due.  Your return should include planned, committed or actual spend between the dates of 14th May and 19th June.  Please also make sure that the amount on your return is equal to or in excess of the first payment amount.  We will require these returns to issue the second payment in July.   Thank you to those providers who have already submitted their returns. If you are yet to respond to accept the terms and conditions or have any other queries in relation to your grant fund please contact us infectioncontrolfund@essex.gov.uk. More information about the grant can be found on the dedicated hub page.
  1. The government have announced today that staff and residents in care homes for over 65s and those with dementia will receive regular coronavirus tests from next weekas part of a new social care testing strategy.
  • Repeat testing will be initially prioritised for care homes primarily looking after over 65s or those with dementia before being rolled out to all adult care homes
  • Staff will be tested for coronavirus weekly, while residents will receive a test every 28 days
  • Over the following 4 weeks, retesting will have been rolled out to all care homes for over 65s and those with dementia who have registered to receive retesting.
  • Repeat testing will be extended to include all care homes for working age adults in August.
  • The government will work with local directors of public health to deliver an initial round of asymptomatic whole-home testing for staff and residents at the extra care housing and supported living settings at most clinical risk.
    • The operational details of rolling out this testing to this sector are being worked through and more details will be provided shortly.
  1. Reminder: Changes to the PPE ordering process - Please complete the relevant request form for your organisation (see below). Once you have completed the form, please email it as an attachment to PPESupplies@essex.gov.uk with the subject "WAREHOUSE" and no further information in the subject line. The guidance for this new process is HERE. Weekend collections will remain only for urgent situations and by appointment only.
    1. Domiciliary/Day Services/Supported Living/Extra Care
    2. Residential
    3. Direct Payment Or Personal Assistant
  1. East of England Region-wide innovation survey - survey to understand impact and experiences of COVID, what has worked and what hasn't. Further information attached and link to survey.
  1. Please see updated list of PPE suppliers for you to order from
  1. Fully funded self-care and recovery sessions for Managers with Amanda Waring - The last few months have seen some extremely difficult, challenging and unprecedented times for Care home Managers and staff teams. We have commissioned Amanda Waring, who has thirty years of experience in working with those who have experienced trauma, loss, depression and feeling overwhelmed, to run self-care and recovery sessions for care home managers and their staff.  Further details, dates and how to book can be found here.
  1. Local Track and Trace system launches - We have been working with Southend-on-Sea Borough (SBC) to roll out one of the first local systems launched by any authority area in England. And we are very proud to share feedback from the Eastern region of the Department of Health and Social Care (DoHSC) which considers our plan to be one of the best in the country. The service will be responsible for identifying, containing and reducing the spread of COVID-19 at a local level. It will also be responsible for 'complex cases' such as schools, care homes, workplaces and vulnerable groups.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 01.07.2020

  1. Infection Control Fund and Support for non-residential providers - A letter and grant agreement for the Infection Control Fund has now been issued via email to providers registered to deliver domiciliary care, supported living or extra care at a location within ECC's administrative area. If you have not yet received an email please let us know via Infectioncontrolfund@essex.gov.uk stating the email address we should send the letter to. Can you please ensure that the words NON-RES are included in the email subject heading. For those providers who have not yet returned the grant agreement on page three of the letter, please do so as soon as possible to enable payments to commence to you. 
  1. Important: Changes in the way you will receive emails - from today (1st July) the way that Essex County Council (ECC) sends secure emails is changing. We will no longer be using Egress to send secure emails.  Instead we will be using a service called Microsoft Office Mail Encryption (OME) to send emails that contain sensitive information to other organisations. Click here for more information.
  1. Essex County Council expands its business support service - Businesses can access 12 hours of direct support and advice via an Essex County Council business support service aimed at helping Essex get 'Back to Business'. For more information please read this article.
  1. Reminder: Changes to the PPE ordering process - Please complete the relevant request form for your organisation (see below). Once you have completed the form, please email it as an attachment to PPESupplies@essex.gov.uk with the subject "WAREHOUSE" and no further information in the subject line. The guidance for this new process is HERE.
  1. The Provide Podiatry team has produced two leaflets for use by care and nursing homes. The first leaflet provides education and information to staff regarding shared care/pressure offloading general foot information. Additionally there is another leaflet for staff and/or relatives/service users to give guidance on appropriate footwear. We hope these leaflets prove useful and support your homes. If you are a Mid Essex provider and have any queries or require any more information/training please contact: claresurridge@nhs.net
  1. Government PPE Portal Update - please note the order limits have been increased for eligible providers

 

Essex County Council expands its business support service

Businesses can access 12 hours of direct support and advice via an Essex County Council business support service aimed at helping Essex get 'Back to Business'.

Working with business advice agency Let's Do Business Group, Essex businesses can access fully funded support to help them survive or recover from the impact of COVID-19, improve, change or expand, or to help them consider their options for the future and develop a longer-term business strategy.

The enhanced business support service builds on the existing support the COVID-19 Essex County Council Business Support Team has been providing Essex businesses since March 2020. Now Let's Do Business Group, funded by Essex County Council, is offering up to 12 hours of consultancy services to individual businesses for the rest of the financial year.

Whether businesses have been adversely impacted directly by COVID-19 or the challenges of the pandemic has resulted in  businesses needing to  reassess how they operate or will do in the future, or reconsider their target market and how or where they may choose to expand, Let's Do Business Group's fully funded advice could help.

Essex businesses can access advice and support including:

  • Finance and risk
  • Customer interaction, target markets and marketing
  • Supply chain management
  • Staffing and recruitment
  • Workplace Operations

Essex County Councillor Tony Ball, Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said: "Businesses are crucial to the Essex economy and it's important we support them as much as we can, particularly through significant change in business markets and financial uncertainty. If we want Essex to be the place to do business, and for our economy to expand and thrive, we need to take action to help businesses make this happen."

Graham Marley Group Chief Executive said 'Let's Do Business Group are delighted to continue to help the businesses of Essex through what have been exceptional times. Our experience in helping businesses to plan for the future and access the finance they need whilst helping develop forward looking strategies will ensure the businesses of the county survive and then thrive into the future.'

Full details of the support available can be found at: www.backtobusinessessex.co.uk

Businesses interested in the free advice and support available via the Essex business support service from Let's Do Business Group can contact the team via their website or by calling the dedicated Essex 'Back to Business' phone line 0800 970 8981.

 

Important: Changes in the way you will receive emails (01.07.20)

From the 1st July the way that Essex County Council (ECC) sends secure emails is changing. We will be no longer be using Egress to send secure emails.  Instead we will be using a service called Microsoft Office Mail Encryption (OME) to send emails that contain sensitive information to other organisations.

What does this mean for you?

Your experience will be very similar to the way that you have previously received secure emails from ECC. You will continue to receive an email notifying you that you have been sent a secure email by ECC and you will need to click on the link in this notification email to access the message from ECC via a secure reader portal in your web browser.

You can continue to reply to us through the new Microsoft reader portal, just like you did with Egress.

What is different?

Previously, you would have used an account with Egress to access the email from ECC using the Egress portal or you had an Egress license and received emails already unencrypted.  All recipients will now need to use the Microsoft equivalent secure reader portal and to access this you will need to do one of the following:

  • create a free Microsoft account (you will be able to set this up the first time you use the service)
  • login with an existing Microsoft account (must match the email address we sent the secure email to)
  • request a one-time passcode (does not require a Microsoft account to be created to log in. This is a good option for shared mailboxes i.e. inbox@organisation.com)
    • If you choose one-time passcode you will be emailed a passcode. You can then use this passcode to access the secure email you were sent by ECC via the reader portal. This method does not require you to create an account or sign in.

What Else is New?

From July you may start to receive emails that provide you with a link to a document that you can open, view and edit in your browser rather than receiving emails with documents attached. Over time this may become more and more common as the documents remain stored in our secure cloud storage and we can add and remove access to them to ensure they remain secure.

Nothing will change until the 1st July but in the meantime, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your time and support while we transition to this new way of working.

 For more information please visit https://www.essex.gov.uk/secure-emails or contact us at ContractManagementAdults@essex.gov.uk.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 29.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Changes to the PPE ordering process - as highlighted last week, we will be moving to an online request process for PPE from Tuesday 30th June. The guidance for this new process is HERE. Please complete the relevant request form for your organisation:
  1. Cardinal Masks - following the alert published on the hub on 29th May, we have received the following update on Cardinal Masks where it recommends supplies are disposed of locally. If you have any issues with this please let us know
  1. PPE warning: face mask used in attempt to self-harm - please see Essex Safeguarding Adults Board (ESAB) letter regarding a concern raised about a case of PPE being used to self-harm. Please ensure you are vigilant of the potential danger of PPE around vulnerable people and conduct the necessary risk assessments for individuals.
  1. Innovation and Inspiration: How providers are responding to coronavirus - health and care providers from all sectors have shared over 300 examples of innovation and new working practices in response to the challenges of dealing with coronavirus. These short examples - from small home care agencies to large acute hospitals - are also a celebration of the dedication and resourcefulness of health and care providers and staff.Browse CQC's collection of case studies.

 

Changes to the PPE ordering process (29.06.2020)

As highlighted last week, we will be moving to an online request process for PPE from Tuesday 29th June. The guidance for this new process is HERE. Please complete the relevant request form for your organisation:

Domiciliary/Day Services/Supported Living/Extra Care

Residential

Direct Payment Or Personal Assistant

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 26.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Infection Control Fund and Support for non-residential providers - A letter and grant agreement for the Infection Control Fund will be issued early next week to providers registered to deliver domiciliary care, supported living or extra care at a location within ECC's administrative area. Please return the grant agreement on page three of the letter as soon as possible to enable payments to commence. 
  1. Error in public health information in this week's Webinar. It was stated that a care home worker with symptoms needs to be off for 14 days even if they test negative. Correction: the care worker would need to be off for 14 days if they test positive but would still need to be off for 7 days even if they test negative. Please see attached useful diagram for more information. Apologies for any confusion.
  1. PPE Weekend Access - if you need access to PPE over the weekend and it cannot wait until normal operating hours on Monday, you will be given a timeslot to collect the PPE on a nominated day. You can access urgent supply of PPE by calling: 03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers, 03330139972 for residential or supported living provider. Calls will be answered Saturday, please leave a message on Sunday for a call back on Monday. Please note the process for ordering PPE changes on Monday (29 June) and further details can be found in this week's webinar slides
  1. Day Opportunities: Recovery Session Clarifications - Please find attached a copy of the Council's formal response to a number of enquiries which were raised by providers during the recent COVID-19 recovery session for day opportunities. If your organisation has any further questions in relation to this matter, please contact the Council via: rachel.horne@essex.gov.uk
  1. Updated Guidance: Coronavirus (COVID-19): getting tested
    • Replaced all non-Randox guidance documents in 'Documents for care homes using the online application' section to include the updated prelabelled instructions for England, Scotland and Wales.
    • Replaced the following attachments with updated registration link: 'guidance on Randox testing' and 'how to use Randox test kits'.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 24.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below and includes updates from Public Health, PPE (including a new process for ordering from ECC) and the Infection Control Fund. Slides are available here. Thank you to all providers who attended this afternoon's Q&A session.
  1. PPE and heat: risk of heat stress - please see advice from Public Health England. Additionally please see the coping with heat and Covid-19 document and flyer as well as the easy read heatwave plan
  1. Government PPE Portal Update - small social care providers can now place ordersmultiple times per week within the limits set out in the guidance, instead of a singular order.
  2. Reminder of Isolation advice for residents of care homes - All symptomatic residents / those who test positive for Covid-19 should be immediately isolated for 14 days from onset of symptoms. This period is due to care home residents being particularly vulnerable. Where you suspect there is an outbreak you should inform The PHE Corona Response Cell (CRC) - available from 9am to 6pm daily on: 0300 303 8537.
  3. Updated Guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19 - find out here what has changed
  4. Social Care Institute of Excellence (SCIE): Care Homes and COVID-19 advice and best practice - SCIE have created a new hub that brings together all the best practice, guidance and resources for care homes and care staff.  It includes guidance on infection control, dementia and autism and learning disabilities.  A directory links to all the relevant government guidance as well as resources from other sector organisations and relevant research. 
  1. Care Provider Alliance Visitors Protocol - the Care Provider Alliance have developed a visitors protocol for providers. The protocol aims to provide a set of principles and tips to help people using care and support to have the opportunity to safely receive visitors during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is primarily aimed at care settings which cater for older people, including people with dementia, such as residential and nursing homes. However, it will be of help for other care settings supporting working age people.
  2. Please find attached a NECSU checklist (care home tracker) for the information which care homes are required to update on a daily basis. Please also see guides for updating care home vacancies & business continuity information and user guide
  1. North East Essex (NEE) Deteriorating Patient Questionnaire - Care homes in NEE, please can you complete the attached self-assessment which will help us and the North East Essex CCG to provide you with support where it is needed. Please return the form to quality.innovation@essex.gov.uk.
  1. Calling all care home managers in North East Essex, we have a date for your diary: Friday 3rd July at 3.30pm - St Helena will be providing a training session to help you understand the My Care Choices Register and to find out how your home can get access to the register. If you would like to join the session, please email Sally: sthompson@sthelena.org.uk and she will send you the link.

 

Today's Webinar and Q&A session (24.06.2020)

Webinar slide pack (please also see amended slides below)

Updated Public Health slides: Download slide pack 

Update 25.06.20: Error in public health information on the Webinar. It was stated that a care home worker with symptoms needs to be off for 14 days even if they test negative. Correction: the care worker would need to be off for 14 days if they test positive but would still need to be off for 7 days even if they test negative. Apologies for any confusion.

Please see attached useful diagram for more information

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 22.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. This week's webinar and Q&A session will be on Wednesday. We aim to publish the webinar recording by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. CQC Data collection - the CQC are now asking Supported Living and Extra Care servicesto complete the Update CQC on the impact of coronavirus online form every weekday. More information on data collection from adult social care providers during the coronavirus pandemic is available on the CQC website.
  1. Reminder: You can receive the latest coronavirus information, guidance, wellbeing support and discounts direct to your smartphone or inbox. 'CARE Workforce' is available as an app or online, designed to keep you up to date. It gives you easy access to a range of support, as well as connecting you with others working in the care sector, providing you a space to share information and experiences. Download the app (Apple & Google) or register to view the content online
  1. New Guidance: Coronavirus (COVID-19) reducing risk in adult social care - how adult social care employers should assess and reduce risk to their workforce during the coronavirus pandemic.
  1. Updated Guidance: Admission and care of residents in a care home during COVID-19 - how to protect care home residents and staff during the coronavirus outbreak. The new guidance can be accessed here and includes a summary of the changes made.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 19.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Care Home provider Infection Control Fund Schedule 3 returns due - As a reminder your Infection Control Fund Schedule 3 returns are due on TUESDAY 23rd JUNE.  Your return should include planned, committed or actual spend between the dates of 14th May and 19th June.  Please also make sure that the amount on your return is equal to or in excess of the first payment amount.  We will require these returns to issue the second payment in July.   Thank you to those providers who have already submitted their returns. If you are yet to respond to accept the terms and conditions or have any other queries in relation to your grant fund please contact us infectioncontrolfund@essex.gov.uk. More information about the grant can be found on the dedicated hub page.
  1. Please see important updates regarding some changes to the processes you follow to access urgent PPE from ECC. Also reminder below regarding access to PPE for this weekend:

PPE Weekend Access - if you need access to PPE over the weekend and it cannot wait until normal operating hours on Monday, you will be given a timeslot to collect the PPE on a nominated day. You can access urgent supply of PPE by calling:

03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers

03330139972 for residential or supported living provider

  1. New Guidance: Steps to take following the death of a person who worked in adult social care in England - includes resources about bereavement.

 

Changes to the PPE ordering Process (19.06.20)

Over the next few weeks we will be making some changes to the processes you follow to access urgent PPE. Please note that this is only a change to how you request and collect PPE, it is not a change to how PPE is allocated.

Collection Locations and access

From Monday 22nd June, PPE will only be able to be collected from two locations, Witham and Colchester. From Monday 29th June collections will only be from Witham. Collections will only be available between 10am-1pm.

Weekend collections will remain only for urgent situations and by appointment only.

Ordering PPE

From Monday 22nd June, those who have an urgent need for PPE will be supported with a 14-day supply. This is an increase from the current 7-day supply given

We would also encourage you to manage your need for PPE proactively. We will support you with PPE a few days in advance of your supply running low. This will assist you to plan your collections around the new opening hours of the Witham site.

Next week we will be sharing a change to the process for requesting PPE and moving this to an online process. We will share more details with you in the next few days.

Please remember that this supply of PPE should only be accessed as a last resort when you have issues with your own supply chain. This includes using the Government PPE portal, should your organisation be eligible, before requesting PPE from this supply. ECC publishes a list of potential suppliers of PPE on the provider portal regularly which may assist you.

Many thanks,

The PPE Supplies Team

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 18.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. As of next week we will be moving to sending 3 bulletins per week, on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday. We will of course email any important information on the other days. We hope you are still finding these updates useful, we welcome any feedback you have.
  1. Further to government advice on restricting workforce movement and minimising workforce transmission the NHS is asking care home providers to update your responses on business continuity on the Capacity Tracker as part of your regular update on the site. If possible they would like this by the end of 19 June.
  1. Free use of WellBeing Tool during Covid-19 to assist your employees and your business. It allows employees to voice concerns and alerts organisations to potential issues

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 17.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Tips for getting a swab from People living with/affected by Dementia.
  1. Reminder of Heatwave plan for 2020 and risks and additional actions due to Covid-19.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 16.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. The Infection Control Fund dedicated hub page has been updated to include some ideas for usage of the funding.  If you have any queries in relation to your fund please contact us at infectioncontrolfund@essex.gov.uk
  1. Free online psychological first aid training from Public Health England (PHE) available to frontline staff and volunteers - Training will equip staff to provide support and recognise people at risk of distress. Access the training materials through the Future Learn website
  1. Please see updated list of PPE suppliers for you to order from
  1. Updated Covid-19 Guidance to include providing support to people with learning disabilities and/or autism. See section 3 in the following guidance:
    1. Domiciliary (includes extra care housing and live-in homecare)
    2. Care Homes
  1. Eligible providers can now receive 200 IIR masks via the government's emergency PPE Portal. Further details can be found here.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 15.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Reminder of how to claim back Coronavirus related costs via ECCs Covid-19 Response Fund - please see the dedicated page on the provider hub for more details.
  1. HSE Safety Alert issued: Use of face masks designated KN95 - HSE has issued a safety alert about the poor quality of face masks claiming to be KN95. A substantial number of face masks, claiming to be of a KN95 standard, provide an inadequate level of protection and are likely to be poor quality products accompanied by fake or fraudulent paperwork. These face masks may also be known as filtering facepiece respirators.
  1. Reminder: there is no webinar or Q&A session this week. These are now conducted fortnightly.
  1. Care Friends recruitment app - Skills for Care has partnered with Care Friends, an innovative employee referral app, that aims to boost the number of quality social care candidates by using recommendations from the sector's own workforce. By allowing care workers to share jobs with their friends and contacts straight from their phone, earning points instantly at each stage of the referral process, the app overcomes the limitations of traditional refer-a-friend schemes. You can learn more about Care Friends here. More support materials will be published next week on the website.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 12.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Essex's Covid-19 Care Home Testing Strategy - please see slides prepared by ECC's Public Health team covering the following with regards to care home testing:
  • When care home residents are tested
  • What to do with suspected outbreaks
  • How to control outbreaks
  • Should staff and residents be retested?
  1. Infection Control Fund and Support for care homes

Agreements for the Infection Control Fund, where NECSU has been updated, have been issued.  We have received a large volume of questions and suggestions for how the fund could be used which we are working through.  We will update the dedicated page on the hub to respond to these questions and share ideas, this should be updated early next week with more information.

If you have not received a copy of your grant please email infectioncontrolfund@essex.gov.uk once you have updated NECSU (https://carehomes.necsu.nhs.uk/)  

If you have not returned your agreement please do so as soon as possible to enable us to process your first payment. 

  1. PPE Weekend Access - if you need access to PPE over the weekend and it cannot wait until normal operating hours on Monday, you will be given a timeslot to collect the PPE on a nominated day. You can access urgent supply of PPE by calling:
  • 03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers
  • 03330139972 for residential or supported living provider
  1. NHS Capacity Tracker - updated questions - a number of questions have been added to the NHS Capacity Tracker to help identify recovery from outbreaks of coronavirus (COVID-19) in care homes. The new questions are below and explanations of each will be available in the tracker:
  • Number of Staff NEWLY SUSPECTED with COVID19 TODAY                                                                            
  • Number of Staff NEWLY CONFIRMED with COVID19 TODAY                                                              
  • Overall number of Residents with COVID19 (either suspected or confirmed) currently in the care home                                                   
  • Number of Residents NEWLY SUSPECTED with COVID19 TODAY                                                                  
  • Number of Residents NEWLY CONFIRMED with COVID19 TODAY                                                                
  • Number of these residents that were admitted from outside the care home TODAY      

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 11.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Important information about changes to the monitoring of the Rapid Response telephone line and Provider Resilience inbox - we have been reviewing the communication mechanisms set up in response to Covid-19 and in order to ensure our best use of resource will be implementing the following changes:
  • the Rapid Response telephone line will close at the end of this week, and;
  • the Provider Resilience inbox will no longer be monitored at the weekends.

Please see here for further information and new out of hours and weekend contacts so you are still able to get support during these times.

  1. Updated advice regarding Red Bags: we previously wrote (01.06.2020) about the need for an adult's medication and Red Bag to be given to ambulance crews. We have since had updated advice which is detailed below:
  • Basildon University Hospital - Red Bags issued are wipe clean and so you should continue to use them as per previous advice
  • Southend University Hospital - Red Bags issued are wipe clean and so you should continue to use them as per previous advice
  • Broomfield Hospital - care homes should place key documents and medication into a labelled plastic bag (not the Red Bag) and send them in with the resident and they will be sent home in a clean plastic bag. This is due to the Red Bags issued not being wipe clean.

Should any of this advice change we will update you via the bulletin.

  1. Updated Guidance for care home test kits: this guidance gives you instructions to test for coronavirus (COVID-19) and applies to all care homes. There are two types of tests Randox Test Kits & Non-Randox Test Kits.

 

Important information about changes to the monitoring of the Rapid Response telephone line and provider resilience inbox (11.06.2020)

We have been reviewing the communication mechanisms set up in response to Covid-19 and in order to ensure our best use of resource will be implementing the following changes:

  • the Rapid Response telephone line will close at the end of this week, and;
  • the Provider Resilience inbox will no longer be monitored at the weekends.

These measures were originally set up to ensure providers had support through the most challenging period of the Coronavirus outbreak.  But in recent weeks we have seen a decline in contacts to our phone line and emails received at the weekends. So we are re-positioning these resources to core working hours to better support you. We will of course keep this under review and reinstate the above should the need arise.

We are still available to help when you need us. The care home hubs are continuing supporting our residential providers throughout this crisis and we have mechanisms in place to be contacted at the weekends / out of hours. Below is the list of contacts you can access as of this weekend:

Thank you for your continued support and dedication during this difficult time.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 10.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below and includes updates on Public Health, PPE and the Infection Control Fund. Slides are available here. Thank you to all providers who attended this afternoon's Q&A session. Please note: we will be moving to fortnightly webinars and Q&A sessions going forwards, and we will look to do some more focused sessions in the coming weeks.
  1. Infection Control Fund - dedicated page published on Gov.uk bringing together information with regards to this grant funding for care homes.
  1. Please see updated list of PPE suppliers for you to order from
  1. DoHSC webinars to support providers gain a better understanding of the whole home testing process, share top tips, and ask questions. Additional dates and times are added on an ongoing basis.

 

Today's webinar and Q&A session (10.06.2020)

Copy of slides

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 09.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. NECSU provider perspective (video) outlining the impact the capacity tracker has made to their care homes.
  1. Tomorrow's Covid-19 webinar and Q&A session - we aim to publish the webinar recording on this page by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  2. Please see following advice from the National Mental Capacity Forum (NMCF) regarding swabbing/testing for those who do not have capacity - A diagnostic test for COVID-19 and is 'an act in connection with care or treatment' for purposes of s.5 Mental Capacity Act 2005 (and paragraph 6.5 of the Code of Practice, specifically refers to 'carrying out diagnostic examinations and tests'). The critical question is whether, for the person carrying out a test, it will be in that person's best interests.  A question to ask is 'Will a positive or negative result alter how this person is cared for?' Although blanket policies may offer testing, the decision for the individual must be made on an individual basis, and in consultation with others as per requirements of the best interests decision making process (s.4 Mental Capacity Act 2005).

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 08.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Expanded eligibility: Whole Home Testing for care home staff and residents - From 7 June 2020 the DHSC expanded eligibility for this service to all remaining adults care homes who will now be able to access whole care home testing for all residents and asymptomatic staff through the digital portal. They expect these to be largely specialist adult care homes catering for adults with learning disabilities or mental health issues, physical disabilities, acquired brain injuries and other categories for younger adults under 65 years. Apply for the tests here. Also see FAQs.
  1. This week's webinar and Q&A session will be on Wednesday. We aim to publish the webinar recording by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. NHS volunteers extend support to frontline health and social care staff - this includes helping with delivering food shopping and dropping off personal medication to frontline staff at their homes.
  1. FAQs: Infection Control Fund - This Q&A has been prepared by the DoHSC in response to a number of questions received from local government and care providers.
  1. Support for leaders through COVID-19 - free, confidential, 1-2-1 coaching or mentoring support sessions for all NHS and social care leaders.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 05.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Government PPE Portal - The government have released further details on the new PPE portal, with details on who is eligible and how it works.

 PPE Weekend Access

You can access urgent supply of PPE by calling:

03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers

03330139972 for residential or supported living provider

If you need access to PPE over the weekend and it cannot wait until normal operating hours on Monday, you will be given a timeslot to collect the PPE on a nominated day.

  1. Did you know that NHSmail also gives you free access to Microsoft Teams so that you can have secure video calls with GPs, district nurses, pharmacists, and the relatives of people who use your services? Digital Social Care is supporting care providers to use technology during the COVID-19 outbreak. If you need help and support with technology contact the Digital Social Care helpline on 0208 133 3430 or help@digitalsocialcare.co.uk.
  1. Day Opportunities COVID-19 Recovery Phase - Please find copy of the slides which the Council presented during the recent virtual market engagement event on Thursday 4th June 2020. Please note that the slides contain a significant amount of supporting information including links to secure additional advice and guidance which may be useful to inform your organisation's preparations for the recovery phase of day opportunities. In addition, please be advised that the Council is currently reviewing a number of questions which were raised during this session with a view to providing a formal response in due course. Once the applicable responses have been finalised the Council will issue a copy of the anonymised questions and applicable answers on the provider hub website accordingly.
  1. We're continuing to send out Alcove Video Carephones to residents as part of the Essex Rapid Care Technology Deployment. Many of our users say that they are loving being able to speak to their carers, friends and family.  We are accepting referrals from care providers so if know of anybody who would benefit from the device, please refer them to us by email at ERCTD@essex.gov.uk
  1. Webinar: Primary care in care homes during COVID-19 - This webinar shares examples of current good practice and collaboration between primary care and care homes, including resources to support virtual ward rounds.
  1. Video Consultation Awareness for Care Homes - This pack has been developed for care home professionals and answers relevant questions on facilitating video consultation appointments between clinical staff and care home residents.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 04.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Infection Control Fund and Support for care homes - Agreements for the Infection Control Fund are due to start being issued tomorrow 5th June by email to all providers that have updated their records on the national care home Capacity Tracker.  Please return agreements as soon as possible to enable payments to commence.  If you have not yet updated your records on the national care home Capacity Tracker please do so via https://carehomes.necsu.nhs.uk/
  1. Skills for Care Covid-19 Webinars are available to view andinclude training, recruitment and dealing with the impact of Covid-19 on your staff
  1. Updated British Geriatric Society (BGS) guidance on COVID-19: Managing the COVID-19 pandemic in care homes for older people
  1. Further to the previous information provider about COVID-19 Medicines Re-use Scheme for Care Homes please see attached poster for medicines re-use training in North Essex

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 03.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's Covid-19 webinar recording can be viewed below and you can also view the slides here. The webinar includes: information about the government PPE Portal (previously referred to as Clipper Solutions), and an overview of financial support ECC is offering providers in response to Covid-19.
  1. Update Guidance for care home test kits:  There are 2 types of test kits delivered to care homes ('Randox' and all other types which are known as 'Kingfisher') and the following is updated guidance for care home managers for each: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested#care-home
  1. Please see updated list of PPE suppliers 
  1. Wearing a mask: Do's and don'ts and other Infection prevention and control (IPC) good practice
  1. Updated guidance: Management of staff and exposed patients or residents in health and social care settings - The government has updated the above guidance with new information on the implications of positive antibody result (introduction and section 4.3.) and the addition of guidance for staff who are notified that they are a contact of a co-worker who is a confirmed case (new section 4.4).
  1. Heatwave Plan for England - The Heatwave Plan for England remains unchanged for summer 2020. Additional actions may be needed due to COVID-19 and specific resources are available via this link

 

Today's Webinar (03.06.2020)

Copy of Slides

We will be answering your questions live via Slido from 2:15pm (until 3pm). To ask a question:

Go to: https://www.sli.do/
Enter code: 5817

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 02.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Tomorrow's Covid-19 webinar and Q&A session - we aim to publish the webinar recording on this page by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. Whzan Telehealth electronic patient monitoring systems are being made available to all care homes across Mid and South Essex (see attached overview of the product). Please see letter from Mid and South Essex Health and Care Partnership which includes the application form which should be returned to Sharon.earl@nhs.net
  1. Updated guidance from Government: Can I meet people outdoors if I also have a carer from another household? Yes - from 1 June you can meet in a group of up to six people, including you and any carers, as long as you practise strict social distancing. Everyone should observe the same guidelines, keeping 2 metres apart. But where you need personal care from your usual carer this may involve being closer than 2 metres. (Excerpt from this government guidance)
  1. Correction to email address previously published regarding the North East Essex Support article on 27.05.2020. You can view the article here and the updated email address is nee.carehomehub@nhs.net. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.
  1. NHSX Connectivity in Care Homes: Call for participants - further to the information previously provided regarding Internet connection deals for care homes, NHSX are asking for care home staff responsible for the internet in your care home to take part in 45 minute sessions to test website pages and understand your needs. This is anonymous and will help them to support care homes better. There will be a £50 thank you for your time. If you're interested please contact digitalresearch@nhsx.nhs.uk to see if you are suitable.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 01.06.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. DHSC has launched a new digital tool for social care recruitment. An online platform has been built for care providers to help to simplify their recruitment process. The new online platform will facilitate swift recruitment for registered care providers by helping them reach candidates looking to work in social care. Registered providers will be able to search for candidates in their local area, view video interviews, start the DBS check and training process, create shortlists and make conditional offers before on-boarding candidates directly into their service. To register click here
  1. This week's webinar and Q&A session will be on Wednesday. We aim to publish the webinar recording by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. Red bags and medication reminder for care homes: please ensure you provide ambulance crews with the adult's medication and red bag when they are admitted to hospital. This is to ensure patient safety and includes key information eg. DNACPR forms.
  1. Update guidance - Financial support for voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations to respond to coronavirus (COVID-19)
  1. Nurse deployment process for providers to request a registered nurse during the COVID-19 crisis - Skills for Care has produced a flowchart which shows the journey up until the point of a registered nurse being deployed. The flowchart helps you to see what you need to do and what happens after you've filled in the NHS and Social Care Capacity Tracker, which is the first step.
  1. E-learning courses -Managing medicines for adults receiving social care in the community -
  1. Updated Guidance The Mental Capacity Act (2005) (MCA) and deprivation of liberty safeguards (DoLS) during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
  1. NHS Test and Trace service - New guidance means those who have been in close contact with someone who tests positive must isolate for 14 days, even if they have no symptoms. See also workplace guidance.
  1. Changes to the Job Retention Scheme (furloughing) - The scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June. From this point onwards, employers will only be able to furlough employees that they have furloughed for a full 3 week period prior to 30 June. This means that the final date by which an employer can furlough an employee for the first time will be 10 June, in order for the current 3 week furlough period to be completed by 30 June. Employers will have until 31 July to make any claims in respect of the period to 30 June. Click here for more information

 

May 2020

 

29.05.20 UPDATE: Important information regarding Infection Control Fund and Support for care homes

On 14th May Helen Whatley MP, Minister of State for Care, contacted Essex County Council setting out how the Government would be working with Local Authorities to support people In receipt of Adult Social Care, specifically in Care Homes. This letter required all Local Authorities to outline their strategy and plan for supporting Care Homes, including how Essex allocation of the additional £600 million Infection Control Fund would be supported locally.

The strategy has been developed focusing on the following elements of support:

  • Infection, Prevention and Control

  • Stepping up NHS Clinical Support

  • Comprehensive Testing

  • Oversight and Compliance

  • Building the Workforce

  • Funding

The Essex Strategy and overview of support to the Market can be found here and further information here.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 29.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

Whole Care Home Testing

It is now possible for whole care home testing to be arranged, including all symptomatic and asymptomatic residents and all asymptomatic staff. Eligible care homes can access the portal here.

Whole Care Home Testing Webinars

The Department of Health and Social Care are hosting a webinars each weekday, in the morning and afternoon on the whole home swab testing process The target audience is care homes.  We strongly recommend them for care homes about to receive their test kits, but anyone from an eligible care home yet to carry out whole care home testing can attend one.  More dates/times are added all the time.

Main objectives of the webinar series: 

  • Outline the end to end whole home testing process
  • Share top tips
  • Provide an opportunity to ask questions

Care Homes can register to access the webinar: https://event.on24.com/wcc/r/2375949/724EF6345473A192F6B9C19334699A29/1077953

The feedback from care homes that have attended the webinars has been that they have been helpful to them as they prepare for testing.

 

PPE:

Cardinal Masks 

UPDATE 29.06.20 - please see following update on Cardinal Masks where it recommends supplies are disposed of locally. 

We have received this alert on Cardinal IIR masks. There have been 5 complaints raised on these items. ECC did have a supply of cardinal masks, and have distributed them. At this point we  are unable to advise of we have had any of the impacted batch numbers. Please note this is not a recall, and further instructions are in the alert. Please let us know if you have any questions, or if you need additional IIR masks please contact us for support with PPE through the usual routes.

PPE Weekend Access 

You can access urgent supply of PPE by calling:

03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers

03330139972 for residential or supported living provider

If you need access to PPE over the weekend and it cannot wait until normal operating hours on Tuesday, you will be given a timeslot to collect the PPE on a nominated day.

 

Easter Eggs

ECC has received a kind donation of Easter Eggs from Cadburys to distribute to care homes in Essex. They will start arriving from next week, so please do look out for them.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 28.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

Issues accessing testing/test results

Please see the following guidance to be followed should you be having issues with arranging COVID-19 testing or receiving results:

  • In the first instance Care homes should be calling the  call centre: Coronavirus Testing Call Centre on 0300 303 2713. It is open from 07:00 to 23:00 every day.

If there is no resolution, in order to make a complaint:

 

Medical Assessment for COVID-19 positive adults

In North East Essex, if you have a resident who is COVID-19 positive but needs a face to face medical assessment, then the Care UK car will come out to them.  To access this service you must go via their GP.  Currently this service is Monday to Friday only. Access the flowchart here.

If you require urgent medical advice, please call 111.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 27.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below. Please endeavour to find the time to view it in order to ensure you are up to date with all the latest COVID-19 developments. Slides are available here. Thank you to all providers who attended this afternoon's Q&A session.
  2. For all providers who have paid Statutory Sick Pay to employees due to COVID-19, there is now guidance available on whether you are eligible for the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme.
  3. The Queen's Nursing Institute have published their Summer 2020 Newsletterwhich contains guidance and support for those providing care in community settings and in care homes.

 

North East Essex Support

For those of you in NEE, we wanted to let you know a few things that we have put in place to support local care homes:

  • Daily call - members from health and social care teams meet on a daily (Mon-Fri) basis to discuss how we can support care home outbreaks and issues.  Because members have access to community nursing teams, GPs, the county council contracts team, social workers etc. we are able to deal with most issues and if we don't know the answer, we will find someone who does
  • We have created a Facebook group specifically for front line care workers https://www.facebook.com/groups/CareWorkersDuringC19/  It is a forum for us to share information but also a safe space for people to ask questions of us and one another.  The group is monitored by a small group of admin staff and any questions raised via Facebook will be discussed during the daily hub call

To ensure that we are accurately representing care homes and care workers we are actively seeking a representative from the care home sector to sit on our board to help inform our strategic direction.  If there is enough interest, we are also keen to set up an advisory group.  Anyone interested in joining this group, or the board, please email nee.carehomehub@nhs.net 

 

Today's Webinar and live Q&A session (27.05.2020)

 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 26.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. An IMPORTANT REMINDER that in order for providers operating care homes to receive ECC's allocation of the infection control fund all providers must register with and then complete the daily care home NHS Capacity Tracker by TODAY
  2. Please see the following guidance from the NHS around COVID-19 Medicines Re-use Scheme for Care Homes
  3. For home care providers, there is updated guidance available on providing care during COVID-19, covering key issues such as PPE, shielding and care groups, hospital discharge and testing, recruitment, safeguarding and providing mental health support
  4. Newly published BPS guidance is available to support the psychological needs of people with LD and their carers

Important information regarding Infection Control Fund for care homes (23.05.2020)

Please see important letter attached regarding ECC's allocation of the Infection Control Fund which is intended to support providers to reduce the rate of transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19) in and between care homes and support wider workforce resilience. See Minister's letter and care home support package document for further detail. Please note specifically that to be eligible for support from the grant, providers who do not already must complete the daily care home NHS Capacity Tracker, by 26th May 2020.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 22.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Additional testing sites have been opened, commencing from the 25th May. These remain available to be booked through the government website.
  2. Make sure you are familiar with the following guidance on working within the Mental Capacity Act during the pandemic
  3. CQC have published additional information on how it is monitoring the Mental Capacity Act and people who are subject to the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards
  4. Announcement that the Government will be offering antibody tests to health and social care staff and patients in England from next week
  5. Guidance is available on how to make urgent dental care appointments during the pandemic

 

Essex Rapid Care Technology Deployment

We're now full steam ahead with the Essex Rapid Care Technology Deployment and have already activated 30 users with 300 devices deployed. As a care provider, if you have not yet booked on a briefing session or completed your training, we would suggest you do that as soon as possible so that you don't miss out. You can do this by email ertcd@essex.gov.uk

The next briefing sessions will be held on;

  • Tuesday 26 May, 4pm - 5pm 
  • Tuesday 2 June, 4pm - 5pm
  • Tuesday 9 June, 4pm - 5pm 
  • Tuesday 16 June, 4pm - 5pm 

PPE

You can access urgent supply of PPE by calling:

03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers

03330139972 for residential or supported living provider

If you need access to PPE over the weekend and it cannot wait until normal operating hours on Tuesday, you will be given a timeslot to collect the PPE on a nominated day.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 21.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Important information regarding the NHS Capacity Tracker (residential services)
    • Please ensure you complete all sections by 26th May 2020 and then regularly thereafter, when any response changes.
    • Capacity Tracker Drop-in Session for Care Home Providers - 26 May 2020 11:00-13:00. This session is for care home providers who are having problems getting on to the Capacity Tracker and/or have questions relating to the business continuity changes and completion of the template. How to join: Join Microsoft Teams Meeting or +44 20 3855 4234 United Kingdom, London (Toll) - Conference ID: 488 010 860#
  1. Covid-19 Financial Support Hub page - this page brings together the financial support ECC has made available to the care market in response to the Coronavirus.
  1. COVID-19 Crisis Counselling Support Service for NHS and residential care home staff
  1. Coronavirus (COVID-19): informing DHSC of the death of a worker in social care - new government guidance
  1. COVID-19: guidance for stepdown of infection control precautions within hospitals and discharging COVID-19 patients from hospital to home settings - advice on appropriate infection prevention and control (IPC) precautions for patients recovering or recovered from COVID-19 and remaining in hospital, or being discharged to their own home or residential care.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 20.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's Webinar video is available to view below and you can view the slides. The webinar includes: updates from Public Health, including testing for residents and staff, PPE update Care Market Support offer and the Infection Control Fund.
  1. We have updated the list of PPE suppliers for you to purchase from. ECC continues to be a supplier of last resort. When requesting stock from the Council please be reminded of the questions you will be asked should you be requesting urgent supply from ECC
  1. Clinical Leads in care Homes (West Essex) - West Essex CCG have now identified a named clinical lead for each care home within West Essex. As part of national guidance, "it was critical that Clinical Commissioning Groups identify a named clinical lead for each CQC-registered care home in their area. This clinician will provide clinical leadership for the primary care and community health services support to the care home, and is responsible for the co-ordination of the service provision set out in the 1 May letter to the care home residents. The clinical lead may be drawn from general practice or the community health service provider and may be a job share arrangement." Please contact WECCG.primarycare@nhs.net who will advise who your clinical lead is (West Essex only).

 

Today's Webinar (20.05.2020)

Copy of slides

 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 19.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Expansion of eligibility for Covid-19 Testing - please see DoHSC letter detailing the new eligibility for testing and FAQs document. Please also see latest government announcement detailing anyone aged 5 and above can now request a test.
  1. Video: How to administer a Covid-19 test to care home residents

  1. The four UK Chief Medical Officers have announced that anosmia - the loss or a change in your normal sense of smell or taste - has been added as a symptom of COVID-19.
  2. Wellbeing support line for NHS and social care workers - the Samaritans and NHS, working in partnership, have launched the new confidential support line: 03001 317 000 available 7am-11pm, 7 days a week.
  3. Please read the following information aboutcourier fraud and ensure your clients are aware - Elderly victims are being contacted by fraudsters claiming to be from their bank. They are often using the COVID19 crisis as a reason, but claim the victims bank card needs replacing, and that a courier will attend their home address in order to do so. The fraudsters may have a great deal of the victims personal data, including date of birth, how long they have been a member of the bank and what type of accounts they have which is why they are so believable and are being so successful. People should be vigilant and not provide their banking details, nor cards to anyone who is alleging on being a courier at their home address. You can find out more about this type of fraud on the action fraud website 
  1. Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme is set to launch available from 26 May and will repay employers the SSP paid to current or former employees.
  1. Tomorrow's webinar and Q&A session - we aim to publish the webinar recording by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.

 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 18.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. This week's webinar and Q&A session will be on Wednesday. We aim to publish the webinar recording by midday to allow you time to view before the live Q&A from 2:15pm. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. Clinical Leads in care Homes (Mid Essex) - Mid Essex CCG have now identified a named clinical lead for each care home within Mid Essex. As part of national guidance, "it was critical that Clinical Commissioning Groups identify a named clinical lead for each CQC-registered care home in their area. This clinician will provide clinical leadership for the primary care and community health services support to the care home, and is responsible for the co-ordination of the service provision set out in the 1 May letter to the care home residents. The clinical lead may be drawn from general practice or the community health service provider and may be a job share arrangement." Please contact MECCG.primarycare@nhs.net to advise who your clinical need is (Mid Essex only).
  1. Video showing how to take a coronavirus self-test swab (home test kit)
  1. COVID-19: guidance for commissioners and providers of services for people who use drugs or alcohol
  1. COVID-19: government document detailing the support for care homes available
  1. PrescQIPP interactive map - To support timely access to palliative care medicines during  the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic PrescQIPP have developed an interactive Map of all the Palliative Care Pharmacy sites currently available in the East of England. 
  1. Please see document regarding the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) in relation to Covid-19 alongside an easy read guide for swab tests

 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 15.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Testing staff and Residents - please see attached letter from Mike Gogarty, Director of Public Health, regarding changes to testing for staff and residents in care homes. The new process details the actions that need to be taken. Additionally please see the DHSC letter announcing the roll out of testing, a flow chart showing the processes for staff, residents and those receiving homecare, and a FAQ factsheet.
  2. Please see updated PPE suppliers list for companies who have advised ECC that they have Personal Protective Equipment available for purchase for those that require it. Additionally, as a reminder, you can access urgent supply of PPE by calling: 03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers & 03330139972 for residential or supported living provider
  3. Homecare invoicing for adults who are self isolating - As you will be aware ECC has put in place provision to allow you to continue to bill for adults (within the restrictions outlined in the attached letter) who have self-isolated and taken the decision to cancel some or all of their service from you. We have become aware that not all providers have been following the guidance for how to invoice for this time. Invoicing details need to be entered onto extranet using the following instructions, delivered hours will need to be updated in the normal way and the difference added to the non-delivered section as frustrated visits. You will still be paid for frustrated visits, but we need to log these. See instructions on pages 5 - 8 of the Extranet Manual attached.  The reason invoices need to be entered in this way is to prevent adults being invoiced for their contribution towards care that has been cancelled. If you believe you have invoiced for any adults using the incorrect method please can you reply to Contractmanagementadults@essex.gov.uk providing the mosaic ID and the number of hours of care that was delivered / cancelled for the relevant invoicing periods. We can then ensure that correct billing is then passed to the adult.  Supported Living providers should refer to the guidance previously issued
  4. Please see attached poster for care homes which gives advice on handling falls during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  5. Reminder: NHS Information request for Care home residents vs GP Practices within Mid Essex only. Please complete the attached spreadsheet and return to MECCG.primarycare@nhs.net and jadelawson@nhs.net.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 14.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. We are aware our bulletins from Tuesday and Wednesday may not have reached you on their respective days. We apologise for this and have raised the issue with our IT department. You can view both bulletins below
  1. Please see COVID-19 Waste Management guidance for care homes regarding the management of waste from people who are suspected or confirmed Covid positive in care homes.
  1. The QNI has launched a new listening service called TalkToUs to offer emotional support by phone to registered nurses working in the community. To find out about how the new service works, please visit the QNI website
  1. Deaths of employees and volunteers in the adult social care sector - The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has written to all local authorities and social care providers setting out their commitment to ensuring that employers, families, and the people who they cared for are given the support they need. The letter includes a request for providers to inform DHSC if a care worker has died and the process for doing this is outlined in the letter, which you can access here.
  2. CQC have updated their interim DBS guidance to reflect the most current information on the DBS website regarding free of charge DBS applications and fast-track Barred List checks for COVID-19 recruitment. 
  3. Care home connectivity - to further support the technology, NHSX and NHS Digital have negotiated a range of internet connection offers with telecom companies. details of which are available on the NHSX website. This is complemented by two new pieces of guidance: choosing an internet connection for your care home and how to use digital services in your care home.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 13.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below and includes updates from Public Health, including testing for residents and staff, PPE update and Paula Wilkinson (Chief Pharmacist for Mid Essex CCG) talks about medicines re-use for care homes. You can view the slides here.
  1. Important updates regarding testing of staff and residents / clients:
  • The Care Home portal for testing coronavirus is now open.  This service is currently only available for care homes whose primary client type is older people (over 65 years) and those with dementia and you need your CQC Location ID.  For clarity, when a care home identifies its first symptomatic resident, you should continue to contact the PHE Health Protection Team who will undertake a risk assessment, provide public health advice, and arrange urgent testing of all symptomatic residents. All symptomatic care workers, including those that work in domiciliary care, can continue to be referred via the gov.uk portals to access tests, as can symptomatic recipients of domiciliary care over 65 years old.
  • As of Friday 15 May we will stop taking referrals for testing via our online survey. All future requests for testing will need to be made via the government portals.
  1. Day Opportunities updated closure guidance - please be advised that the Council closure notice of 24th March 2020 remains in effect and providers are expected to continue to deliver outreach provision until further notice. Click here for further information.
  1. Please see information regarding an Alert Notice issued for Goggles from the national supply ECC have received.

 

Today's Webinar (13.05.2020)

Download the Slides

 

Alert Notice for Goggles used in Covid-19 situations (13.05.2020)

We have received the attached alert around tiger goggles, and we have identified that you have been in receipt of a donation of these goggles from the national supply ECC have received.  We have discussed with Infection Control colleagues at Mid Essex CCG, who have provided the following additional advice on the CAS notice:

This states:

The current Infection Prevention and Control Guidance recommends that a full face shield or visor should be used when performing aerosol generating procedures (APGs).

Staff in your organisation may already have used the above Tiger Eye Protector product for non AGPs (see alert). The risk from using it in direct patient contact when not performing AGPs is limited.

Note:

Use of these products is not contra indicated for non-aerosol generating procedures.

Social Care staff may face risk of "splash" that may require some eye protection - splash is not aerosol generating.

We recommend that your organisation carries out a risk assessment of these goggles for the setting you work in, and take the appropriate action.

In order to confirm you have received this alert, can you please email ProviderResilience@essex.gov.uk on receipt, and if you have any further questions please let us know on this email and a member of the team will come back to you as soon as possible.

Providers are reminded that you should use your own supply chain, but if you have urgent need for PPE to supply within the guidance, please follow the instructions on the provider hub to contact us for support with PPE.

 

Day Opportunities - Updated closure guidance (13.05.20)

In the wake of the recent advice from Central Government regarding the phased reduction of the COVID-19 lockdown; the Council would like to clarify how this position affects the provision of Essex based day opportunities services. Please be advised that the Council closure notice of 24th March 2020 remains in effect and providers are expected to continue to deliver outreach provision until further notice.

In addition, please be advised that the Council is currently considering the requisite recovery procedure for day opportunities, including but not limited to, any conditions or revisions which may be required to vary the conventional arrangements. The Council would be interested in any considerations from a provider's perspective to inform these discussions which will include considerations regarding the provision of suitable PPE, infection control measures, maintaining hygiene and deep cleansing alongside issues affecting transportation, accessibility and respecting the social distancing requirements. In addition, please let the Council know if your organisation would be interested in participating in a webinar session to share ideas and provide feedback or raise any questions via Slido. If your organisation would like to engage in this process, please contact the Council via: rachel.horne@essex.gov.uk

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 12.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Tomorrow's webinar will be published on the hub by midday. The Q&A session will commence at 2:15pm for you to ask your Covid-19 related questions.
  1. Coronavirus (COVID-19): health and wellbeing of the adult social care workforce - Advice for those working in adult social care on managing your mental health and how employers can take care of the wellbeing of their staff during the coronavirus outbreak.
  2. Key COVID-19 Resilience Support Actions for Care Homes Webinar - This webinar is to provide support for areas in drawing up their care home resilience plans which will be provided by the Better Care Support team. (3pm-4pm, 15th May 2020). Book your free place here.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 11.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Please see information about the Care home hubs (updated 12.06.2020) which have been set up in Essex to reduce the number of contacts you receive while still providing information, expertise, enhanced training and emotional support.
  1. NHS Information request for Care home residents vs GP Practices within Mid Essex. Please complete the attached spreadsheet and return to MECCG.primarycare@nhs.net   and jadelawson@nhs.net by Thursday 14 May.
  1. Our webinar this week will be published on the hub Wednesday by midday. The Q&A session will commence at 2:15pm for you to ask your Covid-19 related questions.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 08.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Please see update on PPE including list of potential suppliers and questions asked when requesting urgent supplies from ECC
  1. For information we have been informed the mobile testing sites, bookable through the government website, for next week (commencing 11th May) are as follows. Additional sites are being planned for the coming weeks.
  • Clacton Leisure Centre (11 & 12 May)
  • Harlow Football Club (12, 13 & 14 May)
  • Rayleigh Leisure Centre (13, 14 & 15 May)

 

PPE potential suppliers and questions asked when requesting urgent supplies from ECC.

Potential suppliers of PPE

The following Suppliers have advised Essex County Council (the Council) that they have Personal Protective Equipment available for purchase for those that require it. These Suppliers have given permission for their details to be published.  The suppliers are listed in Alphabetical order with no order of preference.  

The information provided by the Suppliers and the products on offer are in no way warranted or guaranteed by the Council. The products on offer or the numbers available may differ from those published below.

List of Potential PPE Suppliers

Access to PPE

As you will be aware, we have widened access to PPE and it is available for all care visits in line with the guidance with supply for up to 7 days. ECC will not be a long term supplier, this is designed to support you with urgent until your wider supply routes deliver as expected.

In order to allocate the correct amount of PPE to each provider in line with the sessional guidance for PPE wear, we need to understand a bit about your service. As well as being asked about your current stock levels, one of the questions is around your shift and visit patterns.

For Residential/Supported Living/Day Opportunities and Extra Care Providers, we will ask the following:

  • Number of Individuals supported in the service
  • Number of carers per day
  • What are the standard shift pattern
  • How many breaks does each carer have per day
  • Number of Carers per night
  • What are the standard shift patterns
  • How many breaks does each carer have per night
  • Taking sessional use into account, how many masks do you estimate you will require per 24 hour period

For Domiciliary providers, we will ask the following:

  • Number of Individuals supported in the service
  • Number of Visits per Day
  • How many rounds/rotas/shift patterns occur per 24 hour period
  • How long do they last
  • How many carers work on each
  • On average, how many visits occur on a round
  • Taking sessional use into account, how many masks do you estimate you will require per 24 hour period

When you call the team on the phone will take you through these questions. It would eb really helpful if you could think about some of these questions in advance. If you are unable to answer at that point we can help with a small supply of PPE in the short term, but we won't be able to assist fully until we understand the scale of your service. We hope you can assist us to get the right supply of PPE out to you the first time you call.

As a reminder, you can access this PPE in the following ways:

  • 03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers
  • 03330139972 for residential or supported living provider

The other information as per our PPE update of 6.5.20 remains. 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin (07.05.20)

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Correction to Covid-19 Response Fund email address - please note the correct email address to use for claims and queries is Covid19ResponseFunding@essex.gov.uk. We apologise for the error in the communication yesterday.
  2. New app for adult social care workers in England - The Care Workforce app, developed with NHSX and NHS Business Services Authority will be introduced under the new CARE brand and will act as a single digital hub for social care workers to access relevant updates, guidance, support and discounts from their phone.Download the app now or search 'Care Workforce' on Google Play or the App Store.
  1. CQC Webinar: The Emergency Support Framework has been developed to provide a structured framework for the regular conversations that inspectors are having with providers, and is part of CQC's regulatory approach during the coronavirus pandemic. To help CQC have set up a series of webinars to provide information and answer your questions.
  2. NHS Volunteer Responders webinar and Q&A - Thursday 14th May: 1pm - 2pmThis session is particularly aimed at councils and care providers who want to use or have questions about the NHS Volunteer Responders scheme. To join on the day, please use this link: Join Microsoft Teams Meeting or dial in on +44 113 486 0108
  3. Managing a fall that may require an ambulance during the COVID-19 pandemic - please see this poster
  4. Easy Read - Coronavirus, faith and what to do if someone dies
  5. ACL Online courses - new collection of free hour-long courses are designed to inspire people to explore new subjects and ways of learning. Courses include improving health and wellbeing, philosophical thinking and art skills. There will be more sessions added over the coming weeks including understanding chemistry and a look into healthcare history.
  6. Document detailing Atypical Covid-19 presentations in older people

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin (06.05.20)

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. A new COVID-19 Response Fund for providers has launched and is intended to refund Covid related costs not covered by financial flexibilities already announced. For more information including how to claim please click here
  1. ECC have made some changes to the allocation of PPE and more details can be found here. Access to the PPE will be by following the same processes as before, please contact SPT on:
  • 03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers
  • 03330139972 for residential or supported living providers
  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below and includes updates from Public Health, including testing for residents and staff, changes to PPE provision and ECC's COVID-19 Response Fund for providers.
  1. Providers are reminded to book on the Essex Rapid Care Technology Deployment briefing and training sessions as soon as possible. Service users will start to benefit from the Alcove Video Carephone next week and we will be rolling-out new devices every week thereafter. The service is providing a virtual care model to 2,000 appropriate services users during COVID-19 and aid social distancing and help protect your teams from infection. Briefing sessions are held on a Tuesday and Wednesday at 4pm and to book onto a session, please email erctd@essex.gov.uk.
  1. NHSMail - This letter aims to clarify what care homes will get when they sign up to NHSMail, as well as the expectations of the CCGs on how they and other organisations will use the emails in an appropriate manner.
  1. For residential providers entering information into the NHS capacity tracker or any other local tracker please ensure you are using the following rationale when completing the section on your current PPE supply. Please note local authority supplies of PPE are limited and must be reserved for providers who have an urgent need.  Please help us to ensure you have plenty of supplies. Thank you.
  • Green: Acceptable level
  • Amber: Current stock will run out within 7 days
  • Red: No stock/Stock will run-out in 48 hrs

 

Update on ECC PPE provision (06.05.20)

Following the updated guidance around the use of PPE for all episodes of care, ECC have been evaluating how best to support providers with the changes.  

From today, we will be able to support with access to additional PPE. You will have seen the update around additional resilience funding for providers which allows claims to be made for PPE. Providers should continue to do their own ordering, and to claim back within the guidance and the criteria.

However, if your own supply is delayed, ECC will be continue to be able to act as a provider of last resort for PPE. The change will be that we are able to provide with surgical level masks which are suitable for care calls where the individual is not symptomatic/diagnosed with Covid -19. These masks are not suitable for use in situations where the individual receiving care is symptomatic/diagnosed. The fluid repellent masks for this purpose will remain available when needed in urgent situations.

From today, when you call to request PPE for all care visits that are not on covid-19 symptomatic/diagnosed situations we will be allocating PPE in line with the PHE guidance referring to sessional use. To process your request, we will ask you to provide a bit more information about your service to allow us to calculate what the volume of PPE you require for 7 days will be. This will include asking you for specific pieces of information where they are applicable to your request, such as;

  • Current PPE stock levels
  • Number of carers on shift per day
  • Number of visits made
  • Number of people you support
  • How long shifts last
  • The type of service you are requesting for
  • How much PPE you estimate you require

Please do call even if you are unsure of this information, we will work through this with you and make sure there is some supply available to support you in the short term whilst we work through what your weekly demand may be.

If you need PPE for more than one type of service, we will ask you to talk through each one separately, but both can be done in the one call.

If you need to request PPE, please call one of the following numbers between 9-5pm each day:

  • 03330139974 for domiciliary and day opportunity providers.
  • 03330139972 for residential or supported living providers.

Please do not make requests via any other route as this may delay the information reaching the correct person to process the request. If you do not get through the first time, please do call again as the line can sometimes be busy. After you provide the relevant details and your request is logged, a member of the team will call you back to discuss when you can collect PPE and how much we can allocate. The team will call you back as soon as possible, but in busy periods this may not be until the next day. Please consider this when you contact us.

You will be able to collect PPE from Witham 7 days a week (including bank holidays) and the local hubs in Harlow, Colchester and Basildon on Monday - Friday. All are open 10-4pm. Please only come to collect PPE when it has been confirmed it will be ready for you and we give you a time slot for collection. If you arrive at the hub and an order has not been processed, the team will not issue PPE. We hope you can support us to follow this process to ensure all providers receive the urgent PPE as soon as possible.

 

ECC COVID-19 Response Fund (06.05.20)

A new COVID-19 Response Fund has been launched to Essex care providers.  

Funding may be available for you if you are a residential, live at home, supported living or other care provider to Adult Social Care and you have incurred additional expenditure as a result of COVID-19.  

You can access grant funding for certain costs up to 10% of the costs that you claimed from ECC for the period 1st March to 31st March, minus any other funding that ECC has provided to you since 19th March (for example for block bedding that has not been used). 

Eligible costs will be determined on a case by case basis with justification provided as to why the additional costs were incurred due to COVID-19. In addition to costs incurred from purchasing additional goods, costs for internal costs (e.g. overtime) may be claimed; to calculate payment for this ECC will be referring to market averages to determine the sum due.  

You will need to declare that you have accessed all other sources of government funding to support COVID-19, or attempted to access these, and that you are only claiming for costs directly incurred to support ECC Service Users.  

To claim, download a claim form fromand submit this to the Essex County Council email address Covid19ResponseFunding@essex.gov.uk with relevant evidence of expenditure. When all required information has been received by ECC and the claim has been ratified the target will be for payment for eligible expenditure to be made within 5 working days of ECC receiving the claim (payment shall reach your account in 5 working days from this date). Only one claim will be accepted per supplier per month. 

As part of the conditions of accepting the grant, care providers shall agree to operate on a zero profit basis for the period 19th March to 8th July. Care providers shall also provide financial evidence to ECC on an open book basis as and when requested. 

FAQs will be issued shortly and any updates will be made available on this website.

The scheme is running until 8th July 2020.  

 

Today's Webinar (06.05.20)

Copy of slides

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 05.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Reminder: Tomorrow's Q&A session with ECC and Health is at 2:15pm. We intend to have the webinar video ready by midday here to allow you time to watch it before the Q&A session. 
  1. Digital Social Care helpline to help social care providers access practical advice to troubleshoot a technical problem or give in-depth one-to-one support. The helpline will be open between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday by calling 0208 133 3430 or by email on help@digitalsocialcare.co.uk

 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 04.05.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. This week's Q&A session with ECC and Health, and Webinar video, is on Wednesday. We intend to have the webinar video ready by midday to allow you time to watch before the Q&A session at 2:15pm. 
  1. Testing for Mental Health discharges - EPUT will now be testing patients prior to discharge to residential/nursing care/supported accommodation. It has been agreed that individuals requiring transfer to residential, nursing or supported accommodation providers will be tested 48 hours prior to discharge and then placed in isolation pending the result and discharge.
  1. Details of Skills for Care support during coronavirus outbreak- Skills for Care would also be interested to know what support providers need with workforce/training needs at the current time. Please let us know so we can pass on this information.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 01.05.2020

  1. Treasury cut taxes to reduce PPE costs  From today (1 May 2020), PPE purchased by care homes, businesses, charities and individuals to protect against Covid-19 will be free from VAT for a three-month period.
  2. NHSX and the Care Quality Commission are working together to identify and disseminate priority food offers for social care staff and providers.
  3. PPE reminder - for urgent access to PPE please continue to call SPT on 03330139974 for domiciliary providers, or 03330139972 for residential or supported living providers. Please note that at the weekend collections will only be available from Witham. Regarding the latest PPE guidance please note currently we cannot fully implement the guidance as we would wish, as we do not have the supplies. If we did implement we would rapidly run out meaning they would not be available for the high risk settings (eg. those who are +ve or symptomatic). When the supplies are available we will be able to implement the guidance in full. We are doing further work on trying to move to fully implementing.
  4. Availability reminder for referrals at weekends and bank holidays - please note for Live at Home referrals you should continue to respond 9am-5pm Saturdays, and 10am-4pm Sundays and bank holidays. For residential referrals you should be available to respond 8am-8pm every day.
  5. CQC chief inspectors' joint statement on their regulatory approach during the coronavirus pandemic (30.04.20)           
  6. How the sector is expected to interpret guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
  7. Regulating coronavirus (COVID-19) antibody testing - important information advising against use of unapproved antibody tests.
  8. Share your good practice and innovations in relation to Coronavirus with CQC so they can build a database of useful resources. Please email C19innovation@cqc.org.uk.
  9. Covid-19 Test Results helpline - staff who have been tested for Covid-19 at one of the National Centres (Stansted, Ipswich, Milton Keynes and Peterborough) should receive a text with their results. For those who haven't heard the helpdesk telephone number is: 0203 514 3817.

 

April 2020

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 30.04.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Document clarifying the 12-month financial guarantee arrangement for existing older people residential and nursing placements across Essex
  1. All About Me personal profile download to help provide the best individual support for adults with a learning disability or autism. In Essex we have a focus on person centred planning. Once filled in it will help you to understand what is really important to the individuals you support.
  1. Collated information on wellbeing support offers for health and care staff. Please ensure your staff are aware of the support on offer.
  1. This NHSmail Webinar will talk you through the next steps after receiving your username and password; how to activate your account; as well as the different functions included in the NHSmail service.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 29.04.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Important message from the Director of Public Health: Preventing infection in care homes. Any home with 1 suspected caseshould contact ECC and PHEwithin 24 hours. You can access information about staff testing here.
  1. Today's webinar is below and covers the following topics. You can access the slides here.
  • Update from Public Health including latest PPE guidance
  • Testing
  • Care Home Surveillance
  • Expected demand
  • Finances
  1. Updated COVID-19: infection prevention and control guidance - changes are listed in pages 5 & 6 for easy reference.
  1. Care home verification of death process chart

 

Today's Webinar (29.04.2020)

Today's webinar is below and includes:

  • Update from Public Health including latest PPE guidance
  • Testing
  • Care Home Surveillance
  • Expected demand
  • Finances

Click here to view the slides. 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 28.04.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. We are aware of the government guidance published yesterday afternoon (links below) regarding the need to wear masks for all episodes of care. We understand and are aware this may cause significant issues for some providers unable to source sufficient stocks. Unfortunately we do not get advance sight of the guidance, but are working through what this means to ECC Providers and how ECC can support you to meet the new guidance and will providing a statement as soon as we can.

COVID-19: how to work safely in care homes

COVID-19: how to work safely in domiciliary care

  1. Do you have a Covid-19 related question for ECC?Tomorrow's webinar will be published on the Hub news page by 2pm and we will be answering your questions via Slido from 2:15pm. Details will be published tomorrow.
  2. Coronavirus (COVID-19): adult social care guidance - This page brings together coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance published for the adult social care sector and other relevant guidance.
  3. Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for social landlords on essential moves
  1. Covid-19 Diabetes Management in Care Homes
  1. Staff wellbeing advice to help during the current crisis

Health & Wellbeing Information for Care Staff

EMPLOYERS' GUIDE Managing the Wellbeing of Social Care Staff During Covid-19

Guidance for Managers and Leaders during the Covid-19 pandemic - The psychological wellbeing of care staff

Psychological wellbeing during the Covid-19 pandemic - guidance for staff

Advice for sustaining staff wellbeing in critical care during and beyond covid-19

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 27.04.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Please see links below to updated guidance on COVID-19 for how to work safely in Care Homes and domiciliary care:

COVID-19: how to work safely in care homes

COVID-19: how to work safely in domiciliary care

  1. Free tool launched to help carers spot deteriorationand to make good decisions about what to do to help those in their care. Significant Care creator Geraldine Rodgers will be available Friday, 15 May 2020 at 3pm via a webinar to give you the opportunity to ask any questions & share your experience. Please register here.
  1. Reminder regarding new testing process
  2. New weekly FAQs page has been created to show the questions and answers from the weekly webinars, along with any other questions relating to key current issues.Also this week's webinar will be published on Wednesday and the Q&A session will be from 2:15pm. More details to follow. We look forward to answering your questions.
  1. Skills for Care Support for Registered Managers: Advice line: 0113 241 1260 / RMAdvice@skillsforcare.org.uk (09.00 - 17.00 Monday to Friday). This new advice line aims to support those managing CQC regulated adult social care services (including registered managers, service managers, deputy managers and nominated individuals) through the COVID-19 crisis. 
  1. Guidance for care staff supporting adults with learning disabilities and autistic adults
  2. CQC offices are now closed and have stopped communicating by post. Please use other methods to contact them,details of which are available on the CQC website.
  3. Guidance on Maintaining Activities for Older Adults during COVID-19.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 24.04.2020

  1. Important update regarding Testing - The Government announced yesterday that all key workers can now access free Covid-19 tests, either via drive-thru national centres or home test kits. We wanted to confirm with you the new process. Please see attached which includes advice from ECC's director of Public Health about criteria for safe return to work, the current local testing and new government testing procedures.
  1. PPE reminder - for urgent access to PPE please continue to call SPT on 03330139974 for domiciliary providers, or 03330139972 for residential or supported living providers. Please note that at the weekend collections will only be available from Witham. You should also continue to place PPE orders with your usual suppliers to ensure you have sufficient supplies available.
  1. The DoHSC has launched a national recruitment drive for care called 'Care for others. Make a difference'. Adverts will run across national television, radio, social media and online. Find out more on the dedicated website. Also please find simplified instructions on how to advertise a vacancy.  
  1. Health and Safety Executive's Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR) COVID-19 guidance - find out what you may need to report
  1. Availability for referrals at weekends and bank holidays - please note for Live at Home referrals you should continue to respond 9am-5pm Saturdays, and 10am-4pm Sundays and bank holidays. For residential referrals you should be available to respond 8am-8pm every day.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 23.04.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Important information regarding Data Collection

Further to the joint letter on data collection you received, please be advised that Essex County Council will be using the data that is being collected nationally to understand the impact of COVID-19 on providers and therefore, for providers who deliver either residential or domiciliary care we ask that you provide regular responses to these collections in line with the guidance contained within the letter.

  • Residential Care:  Please complete the NHS capacity tracker.
  • Domiciliary Care:  Please complete the CQC's 'Update CQC on the impact of Covid' online form.
  • Until such time as there are national trackers for the other services we commission - Shared Lives; Extra Care; Supported Living; Intermediate care - we request that you continue to respond to questionnaires being undertaken by Essex County Council.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us via ProviderResilience@essex.gov.uk

  1. Important note regarding testing - we have received a large number of enquiries and names being put forwards in relation to testing staff for Covid-19.We are only able to contact those who are eligible for the test. If you don't hear back regarding your submission this is because eligibility criteria hasn't been met.
  1. Therapy input and Equipment Support - The video (below) focuses on the Therapy offer to care homes in Essex. Therapists are crucial to supporting the flow of hospital discharges and rehabilitation of residents in these unprecedented times, as well as supporting with moving and handling crisis situations. It also covers how to obtain support for any urgent specialist* equipment required for residents in crisis, where you are unable to meet their needs with your existing equipment stock. (*in this instance specialist equipment relates to items required to support with transferring residents). You can download a copy of the slides.

  1. Day Opportunities - Additional guidance regarding outreach provisioncovering the intended scope of support which the authority expects providers to deliver during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.
  1. Live-in carers - During the Covid-19 crisis Essex County Council is seeking options to increase capacity to avoid hospital admissions and expedite hospital discharge for all vulnerable adults. Live-in carers provides an alternative an is a model previously used by ECC to alleviate winter pressures and could be suitable for Pathway 1&2 (either home with support or a temporary residential placement for rehab / recovery) for those with or without a diagnosis of Covid-19. ECC appreciates that providers are under considerable pressure so whilst a formal response to the questions is preferred we will also accept a statement to confirm interest / capacity. Interested parties are urged to review the RFI documentation immediately upon receipt and identify and submit any questions as soon as possible and in any event no later than 12:00 on 28th April 2020. 
  1. SCIE are hosting a series of six free webinars on safeguarding suitable for anybody currently working in or new to frontline practice in adult social care and health. Additional below are resources offered by SCIE:

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 22.04.2020

  1. Today's webinar can be viewed below and you can download the slide pack. Topics covered include Testing, PPE guidance and the NHS bed tracker.
  1. Please use the following process when calling PHE East of England Health Protection Team. PHE East of England Centre number, 0300 303 8537 Upon hearing the first message please press the number 5 on your keypad - don't continue listening.   There is NO requirement to listen to the message in full. If you are calling to discuss an outbreak or case they are already aware of, please provide the reference number at the beginning of the call.
  1. St Luke's Bereavement support line for people affected by Coronavirus. The line will be open Monday to Thursday, from 1pm to 4.30pm and anyone living in the districts of Basildon and Thurrock who has lost a loved one during the Coronavirus pandemic can call the team on 03334002358 (free phone). 

 

Today's Webinar (22.04.2020)

Webinar Slides (22.04.20)

NHS Capacity Tracker as mentioned in the Webinar

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 21.04.2020

  1. Do you have a Covid-19 question for ECC? This week's Webinar will be posted on the Hub tomorrow and we will have our usual Q&A session from 2:15pm. Further details will be posted here tomorrow.
  1. Please see details of Government Covid-19 Schemes for Care Providers which includes furloughing of staff. Further details on furloughing and how to claim.
  1. Critical Care Covid-19 Communication Chart
  1. NHS COVID-19: Home Care webinars- the webinars will consist of an overview of guidance through short presentations, followed by opportunities for Q&A.
  1. St Clare's hospice support (West Essex) - A virtual befriending project for your residents and support for staff dealing with those nearing end of life and peer to peer support sessions available  

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 20.04.2020

  1. Important note regarding testing - Testing is only available to those people that meet the criteria and are tested within a five day window. It is crucial that we receive the names as soon after a person becomes symptomatic as is possible. We will not be able to contact those individuals that have had symptoms for more than five days. Only those who are eligible will be contacted. Please also note that testing is only currently available to those who can access the drive-thru locations. You can access the online form here.
  1. Confidential psychological support service to help social care staff manage stress and emotional difficulties relating to Covid-19
  1. PHE Webinar - COVID-19 and care home settings
  1. PHE East of England Dedicated Telephone Access to Care Home Staff
  1. This week's Webinar will be posted on the Hub on Wednesday and we will have our usual Q&A session from 2:15pm. Further details will be posted on the Hub in due course.
  1. Coronavirus advice for health and social care professionals supporting people living with Dementia
  1. Updated PPE guidance
  1. Updated Care home guidance for working safely during this period of sustained transmission of COVID-19

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 17.04.2020

  1. Please find enclosed a poster detailing essential phone numbers and email addresses covering queries primarily relating to COVID-19 and other operational challenges. We would kindly ask that this poster is displayed in an area where all staff can access it.
  1. PPE reminder - for urgent access to PPE call SPT on 03330139974 for domiciliary providers, or 03330139972 for residential or supported living providers. Please note that at the weekend collections will only be available from Witham. You should also continue to place PPE orders with your usual suppliers to ensure you have sufficient supplies available.
  1. Reminder of Testing of key workers - please complete the survey to submit details of eligible staff to be tested. NB 20.04.2020. Testing is only available to those people that meet the criteria and are tested within a five day window. It is crucial that we receive the names as soon after a person becomes symptomatic as is possible. We will not be able to contact those individuals that have had symptoms for more than five days.
  1. Essex Rapid Care Technology Deployment

A new fast paced, technology-enabled service has been set up to provide a virtual care model to appropriate services users during COVID-19. Read the full Overview and FAQs on the service. We will be rolling it out quickly and in phases so please look out for a separate email inviting you to briefing and training sessions. 

  1. LeDeR Programme - Death notifications for those with LD
  1. We wish to take this opportunity to remind you to contact Health Protection Team if you have any concerns about possible spread of Covid-19 (Coronivirus) amongst residents, or amongst staff in your home. As you are aware there is a requirement for notification of 2 or more cases. The Health Protection Team will advise on measures to protect your staff and residents and any need for testing. Please would you also send copies of your CQC Death of a person using the service' notification form to Essex County Council at Quality.Improvement@essex.gov.uk. It would be helpful if you also notify the CCG Infection Prevention & Control Team on meccg.essex.carehomes@nhs.net of any possible outbreaks.
  1. Supported Living Providers Invoicing

If you are submitting any invoices which includes payments for support hours that you have been unable to deliver during the current Covid-19 situation, please identify the individuals and the hours which you have not been able to deliver, and clearly identify which week this applies to.

This is to ensure that individuals receiving services are not charged by ECC for hours of support that they have not received. This information will not impact your payments.

This applies from 19th March 2020. If you have already submitted any invoices, please could you pass us the information regarding which hours you were unable to deliver.

Please submit this information to the non-residential payments team inbox: NRPayments@essex.gov.uk

  1. Hospice Advice Lines

Mid and South Essex

  • St Luke's - Telephone : 01268 526 259 (24 hours) support and advice for people with palliative care needs, or needing care at end of life https://stlukeshospice.com/oneresponse-2/
  • Saint Francis - You can call the Specialist Advice Line, 24/7, 365 days a year on 01708 758643 to speak to a Clinical Nurse Specialist.
  • Marie Curie - Marie Curie Support Line Call free on 0800 090 2309 to speak to a trained member of team, or book to speak to one later
  • Farleigh - Advice Line: 01245 455478
  • EACH - Contact our Head Office Tel: 01223 800 800.
  • Havens - Contact us 24 hours a day on 01702 220350

North Essex

 

Covid-19 Testing of Key Workers (16.04.2020)

The roll out testing of key workers and members of their household will shortly commence across Essex, in order to ensure that staff in vital roles are able to work where safe and appropriate to do so. Testing capacity is limited and is expected to be capped at 300 per STP area.  Testing is by appointment only. This is separate to any plans that are being developed nationally for care home resident testing.

In order to facilitate this we need you to tell us, using the eligibility criteria attached, which of your staff you believe are eligible to be tested for Covid-19 at one of the drive-thru locations listed below. Please submit your eligible staff information via this survey.. We need to know their name, car registration, and contact information. This is personal data and so you must get permission from them to share this information with us. Please return one completed spreadsheet (which is attached to the survey) with a list of all eligible staff to ProviderResilience@essex.gov.uk. You will need to do this for each subsequent new case and we ask that you do this as soon as you are made aware so that person can be tested within the timescales needed. Please ensure you password protect the spreadsheet you return via Egress. Also note that completing the spreadsheet is not confirmation your staff will be tested. Staff will be contacted if they are to be tested using their contact details supplied.

Locations 

.Stansted Airport - Open Now

.Wren House, Chelmsford - Available from 20/04

.Phoenix House, Basildon - Available from 20/04

.The Lighthouse, Southend - Available from 20/04

.Copdock, Suffolk - Available from 20/04

Please ensure you read through the eligibility carefully as only those who meet the criteria will be considered for testing. Also note that you will also receive an alternative testing offer from CQC (using the same test) which is available from Stansted.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 16.04.2020

  1. Testing of key workers - please read this article for information about testing of key workers in Essex
  1. NECSU Capacity Tracker (residential)

The NECSU Capacity Tracker is a national bed vacancy tool.  We encourage all homes to register on the tracker but most importantly to ensure that the COVID-19 section is also completed so that if homes are facing problems with low supplies of PPE or have high levels of COVID -19 patients this information is reported to help provide support where necessary.  Access the tracker and a short demo.

  1. Residential Block beds

The agreement for the COVID response block beds includes the requirement to be able to take referrals 7 days a week from 8am-8pm. Please can you ensure that the responsible individual is available to respond to referrals during this time period to enable swift discharges over the weekend. Should you not be able to meet this requirement please notify the Contract Management Inbox (ContractManagementAdults@essex.gov.uk)

  1. Community health services standard operating procedure (SOP)
  1. Helpline providing digital support to social care providers - Monday-Friday, from 9am-5pm on 0208 133 3430 or help@digitalsocialcare.co.uk
  1. Department of Health and Social Care has published COVID-19: our action plan for adult social caredetailinghow the government will support the adult social care sector in England throughout the coronavirus outbreak
  1. Reminder of Details of Infection prevention & control support to social care staff - including email contact, training video and PDF Guidance
  2. Covid-19 Hospital Passport to complete for adults when they are admitted to hospital

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 15.04.2020

  1. Today's webinar can be accessed below and includes updates on testing, PPE & cohorting.
  1. We just want to remind Care Providers that if you need support with issues or concerns relating to Covid-19 non urgent queries can be sent by email to provider.resilience@essex.gov.uk. For urgent queries please see update (11.06.2020)
  1. We continue to receive questions regarding access to PPE. Please note that you should call SPT on the following numbers for urgent access to PPE - 03330139974 for domiciliary providers, or 03330139972 for residential or supported living providers. You should also continue to place PPE orders with your usual suppliers to ensure you have sufficient supplies available.  
  1. Parking permits for critical key workers

 

Today's webinar and Q&A session (15.04.2020)

Copy of slides

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 14.04.2020

  1. Do you have a question for ECC relating to Covid-19? Tomorrow's webinar and Q&A session is at 2pm and details on how to ask questions will be put on the hub in the morning.  
  1. Queens Nursing Institute rapid training resources for community nursing and care homes. Access the Induction checklist here.
  1. Round up of info to support End of Life care in the community
  1. Training and resources guide (14.04.2020)
  1. Updated British Geriatrics Society guidance for managing covid-19 in care homes
  1. Guidance - Mental Capacity Act (MCA) and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) During the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 10.04.2020

  1. Securing Additional Capacity and Providing Financial Support for Residential Services for Older People
  1. Testing / swabbing of key workers update
  1. Reminder of contacts for Covid-19 queries & Service Placement Team (SPT) Easter Rota
  1. Reminder of Urgent supply of PPE
  1. This week's webinar Q&A FAQs have been added to the hub page
  1. CQC has updated Regulation 16 (death notification) form so you can indicate whether the death was a result of coronavirus (either confirmed or suspected). 
  1. CQC announcement on interim Methodology for Mental Health Act monitoring visits
  1. Reminder of Capacity data request - please complete this short form each day over the weekend

 

Testing / swabbing of key workers (10.04.20)

Over the course of the next week or so, the NHS is ramping up testing/swabbing of key workers in health and social care.  This testing will be via drive-thru facilities and will be limited by capacity. As such the current criteria that we are aware of is that testing will be limited to:

  • A key worker that is symptomatic of Covid-19 and is currently self-isolating
  • Where a key worker is self-isolating because a member of their household is symptomatic. In this case, it will be the symptomatic household member that is tested, not the key worker.

We will make you aware if the criteria changes. It is critical that only people who meet this criteria are tested in order to ensure the efficacy of the test itself and to ensure testing capacity is focused on getting key workers back to work.

Access to the testing will be controlled and names will need to be submitted each day with confirmation of the testing slot to follow.  We will therefore be asking you to provide details of numbers of staff self-isolating who meet the criteria and will need their contact details in order to be able to confirm the testing slot.

We expect more details early next week but thought you would welcome the opportunity to start preparing the above information in the meantime.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 09.04.2020

Please see below a round-up of today's Covid-19 news from ECC:

  1. Urgent supply of PPE - please see below 
  1. Receiving possible or confirmed covid-19 residents from hospital - guidance on how to care for these individuals (from yesterday's webinar). Please also see the government guidance for further information
  1. Details of Infection prevention & control support to social care staff - including email contact, training video (See below) and PDF Guidance

  1. Please see comprehensive provider FAQs for Direct Payments here. You can also access the guidance provided for people who use Direct Payments  and their responsibilities as an 'employer' of care staff.
  1. Capacity data request - please complete this short form each day over the weekend
  1. Essex Welfare Service has been set up to support people who are without the support of family or friends during this difficult time. The service connects them to their local community hubs and volunteers, who can help with shopping, collection and delivery medication & transportation and accessing social contact. If further assistance is needed please see below: Contact details (Mon-Fri 8am-7pm, Sat-Sun 10am-2pm) https://www.essexwelfareservice.org.uk/, 03003039988, provide.essexwelfareservice@nhs.net
  1. Service Placement Team (SPT) Easter Rota
  1. Advocacy Support - In the wake of the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, the Council is acutely aware that vulnerable people with social care needs may require support to understand and communicate their choice or express their views on issues, and participate in making decisions which affect them. If providers are aware that an individual may benefit from support of this nature, please note that the Council's commissioned advocacy service which is provided by Rethink remains committed to the provision of independent advocacy which will be conducted remotely and can be accessed via the following channels: E-mail: essexadvocacy@rethink.org Telephone: 0300 790 0559

 

Urgent Supply of PPE - Updated 09.04.2020

PPE remains a critical issue, but in the last few days we have received some additional supply. This will allow us to give up to 7 days supply to providers supporting individuals who have Covid -19 symptoms. It still will only be available for allocation on an urgent basis and we have finalised these requirements with partners across Essex. PPE will continue to be allocated in the following way:

  1. For cases of critical urgency
    • To providers visiting symptomatic adults where all other options have been considered for their care, where the removal of care would lead to critical health issues, and the care package will breakdown without all support,
    • For providers and Practioners who are going into situations where they will have to deliver support to a symptomatic individual with no opportunity to step away and look at alternative provision
    • You will be supported with what PPE we have to these visits for up to 5-7 days
  1. Equipment is to be worn in line with the guidelines
  1. Understanding that this equipment has not been directly sourced by ECC and we cannot guarantee it's efficiency. Providers will need to be comfortable with this position and acknowledge it before receiving PPE. We will ask you to sign the following declaration when picking up PPE

This Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) has been gifted to you by Essex County Council (the Council), free of charge for use during the COVID-19 epidemic. PPE at this time is in high demand and short supply and as a result the Council has sourced this PPE from a number of sources, including donations from Health Bodies and Essex Police, but also from local businesses. The Council is not able to guarantee that this PPE meets the required British and Public Health England Standards or that it has been stored correctly in accordance with the Public Health England requirements. Essex County Council cannot therefore accept any responsibility for the fitness for purpose of this equipment or any liability arising from its use.

Any PPE gifted to you by the Council, or obtained by any other source, should be used in accordance with the NHS England guidance which can be found here: https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/community-social-care-ambulance/infection-control/personal-protective-equipment-ppe/

It is vital that the covid-19 related PPE requested is only for the most critical cases described above. We will continue to do all we can to source and support access to PPE, but we cannot give what stock we have to providers so they are prepared for a situation that may arise, it must be in response to current need. We really need your support to make what supply we have go as far as possible, and we thank you in advance for your support with this.

Outside of the particular PPE for Covid-19 symptomatic individuals, we are aware that some providers are struggling to source aprons and gloves on a wider basis. There are still various sources for these and as in all circumstances we request that you explore each available route. However, in urgent circumstances we can provide a small additional supply of gloves and aprons if required.

If you feel that your organisation meets any of this criteria and needs this help, can I please ask you to call 03330139974 if you are domiciliary provider, or 03330139972if you are a residential or supported living provider and speak to our service placement team. Please do not contact ECC on other routes for PPE as you will be directed back to this number. SPT will talk you through a checklist and advise where the allocated supply of PPE can be collected from. SPT will be able to take calls Friday 10th - Monday 13th April 10-4pm, then normal working hours. If you call after 3pm you will not be able to collect PPE until the next day

At present all PPE will be collected from the warehouse in Witham. From next week we hope to have distribution sites available in Harlow, Basildon and Colchester alongside Witham for your convenience. These will remain open as long as we have supply, but weekend distribution will remain centralised in Witham. We will advise further once this is completed.

Over the bank holidays and weekends the Witham warehouse will be open from 10-4pm

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 08.04.2020

  1. A joint communication to care providers from directors of adult social care and directors of public health in Greater Essex
  2. Please take the timeto view Today's Webinar which answers many of your recent enquiries - the webinar covers explanations on what PPE to use in each setting, new comprehensive guidance for care home settings, including when residents need to self-isolate after hospital discharge

 

Covid-19 Webinar (8 April) 

Slides from the webinar

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 07.04.2020

  1. ECC's Rapid Response Team (RRT) provider helpline for urgent, COVID-19 related critical issues starts tomorrow (8 April). Please see this update (11.06.2020)
  2. Updated government guidance for the following services:
    1. Homecare
    2. Supported Living
    3. Residential
  3. Webinar reminder - please watch the pre-recorded webinar which will be posted on the hub on or around 2pm tomorrow. The live Slido Q&A will start at 2:15pm. Details will be posted on the Hub in the morning.
  4. Reminder of urgent supply of PPE
  5. PHE training for care home settings
  6. Letter to supermarkets to help you purchase essential food

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 06.04.2020

  1. Important letter from ECC regarding Covid-19 and Personal Protective Equipment
  2. PHE guidance for admission and Care of Residents during COVID-19 Incident in a Care Home
  3. Updated FAQs have been published
  4. This week's Webinar and Q&A is from 2pm Wednesday. More details to follow.
  5. ECC has set up a new page on our website which is designed to support businesses during the current situation: The webpage includes signposts for business support packages, support for the self-employed as well as advice, support and training for local businesses, so please take a moment to review.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 03.04.2020

  1. Uplift statements for 2020/21 have been published
  2. Urgent access to PPE - please see below
  3. Updated government guidance for PPE - please note changes specifically in relation to use of PPE where those in the household are shielding
  4. Mental Health Supported to Independence and Intensive Enablement Announcement - suspension of current placement process
  5. Interim guidance on DBS and other recruitment checks
  6. Direct Payment queries reminder
  7. Answer to FAQ: Where a care worker has had contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19, whether in a residential setting or in someone's home, does that care worker need to self-isolate if they have no symptoms? No. The guidance states only those with symptoms or household members of those who have symptoms need to self-isolate.  The guidance is at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

If a member of staff is concerned they have COVID-19 they should follow the NHS guidance.

If they are advised to self-isolate at home they should follow the PHE guidance.

If advised to self-isolate at home, they should not visit or care for individuals until safe to do so.

If however someone provides 24h live-in care then they are defined as household and should have been self-isolating including not working anywhere else; they should self isolate for the 14 days as per the guidance.

For further guidance please see below: 

Domiciliary Guidance

Residential Guidance

Infection Control Guidance (including PPE)

 

Urgent Supply of PPE

As we are all aware, there remains a critical gap in the provision for PPE across the whole of the Country. ECC have been looking at various options to source this, but are experiencing the same issues in the supply chain that you are. One of the options has been donations from local Essex businesses. This community support, combined with some mutual aid from the NHS, has allowed us to create a small supply that we can share on an urgent basis. We do not have a lot of this, it won't meet all the need, therefore we propose to distribute it in the following way:

  1. For cases of critical urgency
    • To providers visiting symptomatic adults where all other options have been considered for their care, where the removal of care would lead to critical health issues, and the care package will breakdown without all support,
    • For providers and Practioners who are going into situations where they will have to deliver support to a symptomatic individual with no opportunity to step away and look at alternative provision
    • You will be supported with what PPE we have to these visits for up to 3 days
  1. Equipment is to be worn in line with the guidelines
  1. Understanding that this equipment has not been directly sourced by ECC and we cannot guarantee it's efficiency. Providers will need to be comfortable with this position and acknowledge it before receiving PPE. We will ask you to sign the following declaration when collecting up PPE

This Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) has been gifted to you by Essex County Council (the Council), free of charge for use during the COVID-19 epidemic. PPE at this time is in high demand and short supply and as a result the Council has sourced this PPE from a number of sources, including donations from Health Bodies and Essex Police, but also from local businesses. The Council is not able to guarantee that this PPE meets the required British and Public Health England Standards or that it has been stored correctly in accordance with the Public Health England requirements. Essex County Council cannot therefore accept any responsibility for the fitness for purpose of this equipment or any liability arising from its use.

Any PPE gifted to you by the Council, or obtained by any other source, should be used in accordance with the NHS England guidance which can be found here: https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/community-social-care-ambulance/infection-control/personal-protective-equipment-ppe/

It is vital that the PPE requested is only for the most critical cases described above. We will continue to do all we can to source and support access to PPE, but we cannot give what stock we have to providers so they are prepared for a situation that may arise, it must be in response to current need. We really need your support to make what supply we have go as far as possible, and we thank you in advance for your support with this.

If you feel that your organisation meets any of this criteria and needs this help, can I please ask you to call  our Service Placement Team.03330139974 for domiciliary providers, and 03330139972 for residential providers.  They will talk you through a checklist and advise where the allocated supply of PPE can be collected from. SPT will be able to take calls at the following times:

Saturday 4th April 10-4pm

Sunday 5th April 9-5pm

 

Mental Health Supported to Independence and Intensive Enablement Announcement

We are sorry but under the current circumstances of Covid-19 Essex County Council are unfortunately suspending the current placement process for the following Contracts - Mental Health Supported to Independence and Intensive Enablement. The reason we are doing this is to alleviate the pressure on our hospital capacity situation as quickly as we can, therefore, we are removing Care act choice temporarily. As I am sure you agree we all find ourselves in extremely difficult circumstances and we do hope you will support us in this decision.

The following process will take effect immediately; EPUT  will be choosing best match placement to support the needs using the void list - after this point other suppliers will be approached.

To aid us in the quick and accurate collation of voids, below is a link to a live webpage which will update voids immediately. Please ensure you fill this in once a week or as and when there is a change. Please also note on this link if there has been no change. This list will be used for the new process above, it is therefore very important you keep this updated.

https://consultations.essex.gov.uk/procurement/adef41e7/

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 02.04.2020

  1. Update from DoHSC on plans to support access to PPE Equipment across the health and care system
  2. Skills for Care through their endorsed training providers are offering fully funded virtual training for volunteers, new staff and existing staff on mandatory subjects.
  3. North East Essex providers are being encouraged to register with the My Care Choices electronic database of people's preferences and priorities for their future care at End of Life, which will help to improve communication between health care professionals supporting residents.
  4. Further guidance to support families / carers of those with Learning Disabilities and also resources to help those with LD.

 

Mid Duty Team Email Address

Please note CountywideDuty.TeamMid@essex.gov.uk is currently experiencing issues. Please call 0343 603 7630 while the issue is looked into.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 01.04.2020

  1. Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payments extension - update below
  2. Today's webinar can be accessed below and includes updates on Public Health, PPE, Mutual Aid, Operation Shield and the Essex Welfare Service. We would appreciate your views on whether the weekly webinars are still helpful. We would also welcome any helpful tips you would like to share with other providers for any of the issues raised. Please send them to ProviderResilience@essex.gov.uk

  

Extension to Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payments  

ECC are pleased to inform providers that the Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payment  has been extended until the 1st August.  This is in response to feedback from providers to support with capacity and reduce the number of packages on the available packages list.

From the 1st April 2020  ECC will give an additional one off payment of £500 for every new placement that a domiciliary provider accepts from the available packages list that is issued on a Monday and Thursday from the Service Placement Team. 

The payment will be administered by Essex County Council.  Providers will not need to take any action to receive the payment but will be informed when the payment is applicable via a note on each Purchase Order where the payment has been applied.  On a weekly basis all placements that have the incentive applied will be batched for a one off payment that will be received within 30 days.

If you have any queries or comments about the initiative now or in the future please contact us at ContractManagementAdults@essex.gov.uk

 

PPE update and Data request

As you are aware, the flow of PPE remains a national concern. Since our last update, ECC have continued to do all that we can to ensure that the urgency of this is escalated at the highest levels in government.

We are doing all that we can to support you with a robust supply of appropriate PPE to support your staff through the covid-19 pandemic, and are looking at all opportunities available to us. You will be aware that we have asked for donations and the local community of Essex have been very responsive. We are currently collecting these and will do all we can to support with critical demand until a wider supply chain is confirmed.

It would really help if you were able to give us an oversight of your organisation's position on PPE. It would be really helpful if you return the survey below. As supply is so limited at present, please can you advise only of your most critical need for the next 2 days on your current caseload so we can support you by putting resources in the correct place where available.  

https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=TzK0qFwVFUKg8X7YzJqZL2adyT4yv4dJorwiF4-vxcdUOURHQlRYREhJQVVVTlczSFUxQUk3UENEVy4u 

When returning the information, can you also please consider it in line with the following:

  • The type of PPE that is to be used with those symptomatic or diagnosed with covid-19
  • That you continue to place orders through your own supply chain and options available to you, and the escalated Government routes provided in past updates and the webinar

If you have a larger supply of PPE that you could share vis mutual aid with us to distribute, that would be very welcome. We are happy to collate and distribute this if you can help.

 

Today's Webinar (01.04.2020)

 

March 2020

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 31.03.2020

  1. Updated categorised FAQs
  2. PPE data request
  3. Reminder of Mutual Aid approach
  4. Reminder: this week's webinar will be published on the Hub at 2pm tomorrow with live questions via Slido from 2:15pm. Slido login details will be published on the news page tomorrow.
  5. Accessible Info on Coronavirus and Information in Other Languages
  6. NHSMail: Following communications from the CCG regarding the government guidance that all care homes should have access to NHS.mail. Please could you advise if your nhs.net email application has been successful and forward your new email address, or if you have received communication that the setting up of your account has not been successful please can you contact bbccg.qualityproviderqueries@nhs.net.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 30.03.2020

  1. Thank you letter from Matt Hancock. For the latest DoHSC info you can follow @DHSCgovuk on Twitter
  2. Capacity data request (every Monday and Thursday)
  3. This week's webinar and Slido Q&A will be Wednesday afternoon from 2pm. More details to follow.
  4. Covid-19 Testing update from the Department of Health and Social Care
  5. Government launches Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp. Add 07860 064422 to your phone contacts and message the word 'hi' in a WhatsApp text to get started
  6. Self-Employment Income Support Scheme
  7. The British Geriatric Society has produced care home guidance online. In particular it covers two key issues for care homes:
    • What do we do about 'wandering' residents?
    • Frail older people with atypical/non-respiratory/non-specific symptoms - do they have COVID?

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 27.03.2020

  1. Essex County Council has a dedicated team in place to support businesses with general advice and information to help them through the challenges being faced as a result of Coronavirus. There is information available on the Essex County Council website, which is being updated regularly. If you're unable to find what you need from the information available, contact the team at: COVID19BusinessSupport@essex.gov.uk
  2. Police officer attendance at care home deaths - HM Senior Coroner is content that, during this national crisis, there is no necessity for police to attend all deaths occurring in care homes; the only exception will be where there is suspicion with regards to involvement of a third party, including negligence.
  3. National Care force - Care providers can use this free online platform to find volunteers to help with cooking, child care, driving, running errands and other such assistance, freeing up frontline staff to focus on immediate care. Sign up here www.nationalcareforce.co.uk

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 26.03.2020

  1. Please see letter from the CCGs regarding the need for providers to sign up to NHS Mail (application form and user guide) & upload information into a Capacity Tracker in order to support the system during the covid-19 outbreak.
  2. PHE Guidance for when to use a surgical face mask or FFP3 respirator.
  3. PHE Guidance for putting on PPE for non-aerosol generating procedures (AGPs) and taking off PPE for non-aerosol generating procedures (AGPS)
  4. 3 hour window for discharge from hospital
  5. Government to provide free car parking for NHS and social care staff (announcement)

 

Hospital Discharges (26.03.20)

We wanted to make clear to you the requirements around assessments, including the timeline for decisions to accept.

The Government has mandated a 3 hour window for discharge from hospital once an adult is 'medically stable, fit for transfer'.   This timeline gives an hour for the adult to be transferred from the ward to a discharge lounge, and a further 2 hours for the adult to be discharged from the hospital.  This means that you will NOT have the ability to meet and assess the adult prior to accepting them into one of the contracted beds.

Essex County Council, working our local CCGs and Acute and Community health providers will ensure that information about each adult is shared with you in a timely manner, to allow you to consider and accept the referral.  This information will be proportionate, and at times may be limited due to the pressure in the system.

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 25.03.2020

  1. The Supply Disruption Service helpline can answer PPE calls and emails 24/7 on 0800 915 9964 or email supplydisruptionservice@nhsbsa.nhs.uk  
  2. Domiciliary Care, Supported Living and Independent Living Financial Support: Questions and Answers
  3. Today's webinar can be accessed below and covers a number of concerns you have raised with us. You can also view the slides here. We will publish the answers to the questions received in Slido as soon as possible on the FAQ page.
  4. Apologies to those who experienced issues downloading the spreadsheet for the RAG rating request yesterday - the updated spreadsheet can be accessed here.

 

Today's Webinar (25.03.2020) 

Copy of Slides 

 

ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 24.03.2020

  1. Tomorrow's webinar will be uploaded to the hub on or around 2pm. We will publish the Slido code on the hub tomorrow and will start answering your questions via the system from 2:15pm.
  2. Urgent data request - To understand which service users you have RAG rated at each status level, please could you complete the attached spreadsheet and return to this mailbox by close of business 25th March 2020.  Please note you will also be required to enter details of any frustrated visits you are claiming, so we are able to cross check against the submitted invoices.
  3. Day Opportunities COVID-19 update: closure notification
  4. Guidance for Supported Living Providers for potential reduced community access and tips to keep active whilst keeping a safe distance
  5. Pharmacy opening times update and medication support from community pharmacies                
  6. NHS Infection control for residential care leaflet
  7. To help ease communication with the NHS they are contacting providers to set up NHSmail accounts. Please do this as soon as possible.

 

 ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 23.03.2020

 

 ECC Covid-19 Bulletin 20.03.2020

  • Care Home Food Supply - please see update below
  • The FAQs have been updated (from Q46 onwards)
  • Dept of Health and Social Care will be answering your FAQs - please submit them here
  • Provider Resilience inbox - for clarity this inbox is being used to collate your questions. Due to the volumes individual responses to the questions raised are not possible. However answers to the themes raised will go out via the daily updates or via updates to our FAQ
  • Please note: Catheter training on March 23rd has been cancelled    
  • Easy read guidance document regarding Covid-19 

 

Care Home Food Supplies

Brakes are prioritising our care homes for food deliveries and have agreed for care homes to contact them directly on an individual basis to open an account. Brakes offer a full range of food and catering provisions; full product details can be found on their website - www.brake.co.uk

If you would like you start utilising Brakes please contact Joe Murgia directly.

Joe Murgia
Business Development Manager
Brakes

T: 0344 800 4900
M: 07483 952385
E: joseph.murgia@brake.co.uk

 

COVID 19 update for day opportunities

From today the 19th of March, in light of COVID-19 situation Essex County Council will cease to make new referrals to Day Opportunity services. Please note support to existing placements should continue to be delivered as  planned until further notice or guidance is received from ECC.

If you intend to enact your business continuity plan or close your service please inform the service placement team: Service.PlacementTeam@essex.gov.uk and Rachel.Horne@essex.gov.uk

If you or anyone attending your service needs to contact ECC out of business hours please contact the emergency duty team on: 0345 6061212

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued extremely valuable work to support vulnerable adults in this very difficult time.

 

Social Care Market Capacity (19.03.2020)

To enable Essex County Council (ECC) to understand capacity within the Social Care market and any challenges you might be facing, we are implementing a questionnaire that is available at the following link https://consultations.essex.gov.uk/procurement/3a0477b6.   We would kindly ask that this questionnaire is competed and submitted as soon as possible but by 2pm Friday 20 March.  The intention will then be to request this information on a weekly basis however frequency of response is subject to review.

A question within the domiciliary care section, requires a spreadsheet to be completed (if applicable) and returned.  This spreadsheet is attached to this email and should be completed and returned as applicable to providerresilience@essex.gov.uk when you submit your questionnaire.

Should you have any questions in relation to this questionnaire, please do not hesitate to contact us via email on providerresilience@essex.gov.uk.

 

Covid-19 Webinar 19.03.2020

Copy of slides

 

Home Care, Supported Living and Independent Living Financial Support (18.03.2020)

Please see attached important information regarding interim arrangements of financial support being made available to you.

Communications for other provider markets will be issued shortly

 

Update regarding use of PPE and supplies (18.03.2020)

Over the last few days, some queries have arisen from providers around when PPE should be used in connection to Covid-19.

We have shared a number of links to the government position on how an individual who is showing symptoms of Covid-19 should be cared for, which includes using PPE of aprons, gloves and fluid repellent masks. If the individual receiving care is not showing symptoms of Covid-19, no PPE is required above good hygiene practices where organisations should follow their standard policies.

As previous communications have mentioned, we are awaiting stock of PPE and are working on how we can distribute this to providers as needed once received. We will share this information as soon as we have taken receipt of the PPE. But as we await this, it is important that the PPE in the system is used in line with the guidance which is when caring for individuals showing symptoms of Covid-19 and not used as a matter of course on all visits. Our letter on this issue on 17th March added more information from Health Protection England:

'Their advice was that most risk is associated with aerosol generating procedures such as suctioning in care homes. Home care support and other types of support in care homes would be lower risk and that using your normal procedures for someone who has a respiratory infection should be adequate while we are waiting for supplies to be released.'

We will update you on the position on PPE as soon as possible. 

The government advice on how to care for individuals with and without symptoms can be found here;

Our letter of 17th March with additional information can be found here.

 

Reminder: Webinar 19.03.2020

To watch the presentation and ask questions:

  1. Go to the hub news page at 11am and await the pre-recorded video
  2. Go to: https://www.sli.do/? and enter the code we will publish on the hub news page tomorrow
  3. Ask questions via Slido. We will aim to answer as many as possible live via the system from 11:15am

 

Covid-19 Planning and Support update 17.03.2020

Please see attached latest letter from Steve Ede, Head of Procurement. As part of this update we are requesting some urgent information from you about your clients. Using the attached guidance on prioritising the needs of individuals please complete this form by COP Thursday (19th March). We very much appreciate your continued support.

 

Covid-19 FAQs and this week's webinar

We have published a provider coronavirus frequently asked questions (FAQ) page and have included answers from questions raised in the webinar last week. We have received a large number of questions in the provider resilience inbox and these FAQs should help to answer most. However we will be adding more answers to your questions and publishing them on this page.

We are also holding another webinar on Thursday at 11:15am. The presentations will be pre-recorded and published on the hub news page prior. At 11:15am we will be taking live questions via Slido and responding to them. Details to follow.

 

ECC Covid-19 Planning and Support 16.03.2020

Please see attached letter from Steve Ede, Head of Procurement in regards to ECC planning and support available to support you. This includes a message regarding PPE as we recognise this is of significant concern to you.

 

Updated Covid-19 Government Guidance 13.03.2020

Please see updated government guidance for social care organisations. This includes advice whereby staff are concerned they have Covid-19, and where residents display symptoms of the virus. Please ensure you familiarise yourself with this new guidance.

Residential Guidance

Supported Living Guidance

Home care Guidance

 

Covid-19 Support for businesses

The government has published details of support available to businesses to help you through the period of disruption caused by Coronavirus. Details of which can be found below:

  • SMEs to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19 (click for eligibility)
  • a Business Rate Relief for small businesses (details)
  • the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme to support long-term viable businesses who may need to respond to cash-flow pressures by seeking additional finance. This service will be available in the coming weeks (details)
  • the HMRC Time To Pay Scheme to help businesses with tax bills in financial distress (helpline 0800 0159 559)
  • reminder to check your insurance cover so that it covers pandemics

Throughout this extremely challenging period we want to assure you that our immediate concerns continue to be the safety and wellbeing of our most vulnerable residents across Essex, and how we can support you, both financially and otherwise, to enable that to happen.

At this stage we are working through all options, in relation to any actions we may take, to help you continue to provide these essential services, essential to maintaining the market; whilst preventing any consequential financial hardship as a result of disruption to normality. 

We will provide more information as soon as possible to help in your planning and preparation for the weeks ahead.

We ask that you maintain communication with us through the inbox ProviderResilience@essex.gov.uk that has been created to ensure that we are fully aware of your current situation in order that we are able to continue to plan for the best way to proceed on behalf of you and the people of Essex.

 

Covid-19 Webinar Video 11.03.2020

The recording of the Covid-19 webinar from 11th March is now available. Thank you to all who joined and asked questions, which we are currently reviewing. Apologies again to those who experienced sound issues during the live event, we have made some sound improvements to the recording. We have had good feedback about the format and will look to run these again.

Copy of slides

 

Coronavirus (Covid-19) Webinar Slides

We held a live Coronavirus webinar earlier today (11th March) which included presentations from the Directors of Commissioning and Public Health. The slides are available to download and we intend to publish the recording of the webinar as soon as possible. Thank you to those that joined, we understand there were some sound issues, but we have also received good feedback on the format. 

 

Important information regarding Coronavirus (Covid-19)

The government has published a comprehensive guide for social care providers on preventing and dealing with cases of the coronavirus. It includes advice on what to do in a number of scenarios including if your staff or clients become unwell, or have been in contact with someone with the virus and what actions you can take now to help prevent the spread of the virus. Please take the time to familiarise yourself with the contents.

It's important to note that where someone is undergoing testing for the virus, or a confirmed case has recently been in the workplace or residential setting, closure of the workplace or residential setting is not currently recommended. In all situations please follow the advice from the Public Health England (PHE) local Health Protection Team. Additionally, people who have not had close contact with a confirmed case do not need to take any precautions and can continue their routines as usual.

The CQC has also sent a letter to all registered care services, detailing how they are responding to the outbreak.

 

February 2020

 

Important: Delays receiving Egress messages

Update 27 February: Egress have advised the issue has been fixed. We will continue to monitor this but should you continue to experience issues please contact Service.PlacementTeam@essex.gov.uk

The Service Placement Team (SPT) are currently experiencing issues with Egress, the secure email system.  The issues are resulting in delays in providers being able to access ISPs and in some instances the team are manually password protect files before emailing them for data security.  We are working closely with our IT department to identify the reasons for this fault, therefore please accept our apologies whilst this issue is resolved.

 

Information regarding Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Coronavirus (Covid-19) is a new illness with symptoms including fever and a cough that may progress to severe pneumonia causing shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. As of 17th Feb 2020 nine patients in England have tested positive for Covid-19 and none of whom were Essex residents.  The Covid-19 virus is not yet circulating in the community and should have little impact on care providers at the moment. 

Those seeking general information on covid-19 will find the NHS website a reliable source.  More in-depth and technical information can be found on the Public Health England website. 

For specific concerns related to caring for an individual who may have the virus call Public Health England's Covid-19 help line: 0300 3038 537 (option 1).

 

E-Learning to Help People in Cold Homes 

Plese find below details about a new e-learning programme to support health & care staff to spot the signs of people living in cold homes. Health Education England e-Learning for Healthcare (HEE e-LfH) haas worked with Public Health England (PHE) to develop the Helping People Living in Cold Homes e-Learning Programme for health & care professionals. The e-learning resource supportshealth & social care professionals to put National Institute for Health & Care Excellence (NICE) guidance into practise. 

Aimed at healt & care staff who undertake home visits, the resource provides information on local service that can assist people living in cold homes, such as installing insulation, improving heating systems or helping reduce energy bills. It also helps pwople spot the signs of a cold home- including less obviousl ones. With this information, staff can have a conversation with pople whosehealth may be affected by being cold at home, & signpost them to the relevant local services. For more information about the e-learning programme, including details on how to access, visit:

https://www.e-lfh.org.uk/programmes/cold-homes

 

Care Home Recycling 

We all have a duty to recycle, wheather at home or at work. We trust that you have arrangements in place to rycycle & safely dispose of items such as medicines. Proper removal of food waste, which is inevitable in care establishments catering for people, is also very important. Separating food waste is not only good for the enivironment, but also reduced gdeneral waste & could result in lower costs for collection services. Below are a few organisations that offer business waste collection coutnywide: 

Biffa  0800 307307 https://www.biffa.co.uk/busiess-waste/our-services 
CSH Environmental 01206 916273 https://www.cshenvironmental.co.uk/trade-waste/
Green Recycling  01621 842600 https://www.greenrecycling.co.uk

 

Do you have innovative ways of reducing your waste? Or tips for recycling? Please get in touch so we can share these with other care providers. 

 

Report: A Strategic and Objective View of the Adult Social Care Market in Essex

Essex County Council commissioned Kingsbury Hill Fox, a health and social care consultancy company, to provide an independent view of the care market in Essex.  The objective was to create an evidence base which could be used to inform future commissioning strategies for the council.  The report is already helping to shape thinking about future contractual models for domiciliary care and it has prompted internal discussions about the financial resilience of the care market more generally.  The council will continue to work with care providers and service users to ensure that it commissions solutions which people want, which improve outcomes and which the market can supply.  You can read the full copy of the report where recommendations are outlined along with ECC's response to each

 

Important: New e-Sourcing System 

Essex County Council isimplementing a new E-Sourcing system, Proactis, where the organisations's sourcing, contract & supplier management activity will be undertaken. The Council previously used BiP Delta.

The System go live is scheduled to commence on the 3rd of February. From this date all Essex County Council Procurement activity will be conducted through Proactis. 

In order to participate or register interest in advertised bid opportunities for Essex County Council you will need to register your orgganisation on the Proactis Supplier Newwork which cna be reached on the link below; 

https://supplierlive.proactisp2p.com/Account/Login 

In adition, our current suppliers will receive an email from the Proactis systme over the next  ocuple of months which will be a "request to engage". You will need to follow the link in the email to ensure that your supplier record is correct. This will allow us to communicate & share contractual documentation through the system including performance reporting & policy updates. 

Proactis system support

Should you require any assistance with any ssytem please scontact Supplier Support helpdeskhttp://proactis.kayako.com/default

Alternatively, you can email suppliersupport@proactis.com to automatically log a ticket for the https://supplierlive.proactisp2p.com/Account/Login system

 

Adult Safeguarding Staff Survey 

The Southend, Essex and Thurrock Safeguarding Boards are requesting that all staff please take a 10 minute survey to allow us to establish the strengths and the gaps within adult safeguarding, to then enable us to know how we can help you to feel more confident and knowledgeable when dealing with adult safeguarding issues going forward.

This survey will be open to all staff at all levels, including receptionists, volunteers, contracted staff, social workers, mental health workers, stakeholders, trainees, as well as any other in direct employee of the organisation.  The staff survey will allow the boards to comply with the Care Act (2014) by helping us have a clear, agreed understanding of the roles, responsibilities and accountability of its member agencies.  The link for the staff survey is HERE, as previously mentioned, it should take no more than 10 mins to complete and all responses will be anonymous.  The survey opens on Monday 27th January and closes on 6th March.

Link - https://consultations.essex.gov.uk/esab/fbe46ec5

SET Missing Protocol

This protocol has been developed by Southend, Essex and Thurrock (SET) Safeguarding Adult Boards to give guidance on how to provide the best possible service to adults that are at risk of going missing or have gone missing. Alongside the guidance is a missing form which should be completed where there is a risk of someone going missing, alternatively it could be completed at the time it is discovered that someone is missing but shouldn't delay reporting the incident to the police.  The form will enable the police to risk assess the person accurately and have all the necessary information to assist during the search and investigation.

Link - https://www.essexsab.org.uk/media/2489/missing-protocol-may-2019-v2.pdf

 

January 2020

 

Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payment

ECC are pleased to inform providers that the Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payment will be re-introduced from Monday 20th January 2020.  This is in response to feedback from providers to support with capacity and reduce the number of packages on the available packages list.

From the 20th January 2020 until 31st March 2020 ECC will give an additional one off payment of £500 for every new placement that a domiciliary provider accepts from the available packages list that is issued on a Monday and Thursday from the Service Placement Team. 

The payment will be administered by Essex County Council.  Providers will not need to take any action to receive the payment but will be informed when the payment is applicable via a note on each Purchase Order where the payment has been applied.  On a weekly basis all placements that have the incentive applied will be batched for a one off payment that will be received within 30 days.

If you have any queries or comments about the initiative now or in the future please contact us at ContractManagementAdults@essex.gov.uk

 

Update on mid and west Essex outbreak of invasive Group A Streptococcus (iGAS)

Mid Essex CCG is pleased to report there have been no new cases of invasive Group A Streptococcus (iGAS), caused by the outbreak strain, in mid Essex and west Essex since August 2019.

As a result the CCG, along with partners involved in the incident management including Public Health England (PHE) and Provide Community Interest Company, have taken the decision to step down the Incident Management Team and some of the control measures that have been in place since March 2019. This is in line with criteria agreed in September 2019 by all organisations involved in the Incident Management Team.

All organisations involved in managing the outbreak will remain vigilant in the coming months and will continue to assess the situation as the control measures are carefully reviewed and downgraded.

Some of the control measures will continue and others have been revised. For example, wounds of adult patients being treated by mid Essex community nursing teams will continue to be closely monitored for signs of infection and swabs taken where required to check for the bacteria. However, community nursing teams who were only working in the CM7 Braintree postcode area to minimise the risk of the infection spreading, have returned to their normal working pattern.

Rachel Hearn, Director of Nursing and Quality at Mid Essex CCG said: "We are beginning to step down the incident management and control measures following advice that there have been no new cases of invasive Group A Streptococcus (iGAS) linked to the mid Essex outbreak since August 2019.
"The safety and care of our patients and residents across mid Essex remains our first priority and we want to reassure everyone that the CCG is still working closely with partners to monitor the situation and will continue to do so.

"Our thoughts remain with the families of patients affected and those who have died as a result of iGAS."

Last autumn Mid Essex CCG commissioned an independent investigation into the outbreak. A report from the investigation is due to be published in the spring.

For background information on the mid Essex iGAS outbreak visit https://midessexccg.nhs.uk/news/1057-group-a-streptococcus-outbreak-in-mid-essex 

 

Healthy Lifestyles Booklet for Adults with a Learning Disability 

Following our recent healch check guidance providers & people with learning disabilities &autisum, heere is a very handy easy-read guide about living a healthy life. 

People with learning disabilities have poorere physical & mental health than other people & die younger. Annual Health Checks (AHCs) can be offered to anyone on the learning disability register aged 14 years & older. 

We know that not everyone registered with their GP in Essex as having a learning disability is getting an Annual Health Check (AHC)

AHC'S can identify undetected health conditions early, ensure there are effective ongoing treatments & establish trust & continuity of care. 

 

Subsidised Training Opportunities

Pleses see below details of subsidised training courses still availbe, alongside a new course added. For more information on these & other training & development opportunities please email acl.nostoppingme@essex.gov.uk or call Lorretta Wilshire: 03330 138387 or Shane Carter: 03330 320985 

NEW - Level 2 Understanding to Technology Enabled Care (flyer attached) 

  • Enables indibiduals to understand techonlogy enabled care that can be used to support an indivitual's quality of live. 
  • Enables individuals to understand person-centred approach to tecnology enabled care to support independence, health & well-being
  • Enables individuals to understand roles & responsibilityies in relation to technology enabled care. 
  • Gain a nationally recongised qualification 

Cost to the employer: £125 per person 

Unit Accrditation Towards Level 4 Adult Social Care (City & Guilds) 

  • Ideal for individuals who take the lead in the quallity of your provision e.g. care certificate 
  • Ideal ffor those looking to progress onto management or senior worker status
  • Provides the next steps in your personal & professional development 

Cost to the employer: £125 per person 

Level 2 Award in Leadership & Team Skills. 

  • Ideal for those looking to boost their perfomance as a team mem er & make the transition from team member to leading a team. 
  • This course will enable those already pra tishing as a team leader to become more effective &  confident & boost productivity in the workplace. 
  • Gain a nationally recognised qualification 

Cost to the employer: £125 per person

Microsoft Office (Wordk & Excel) 

  • These courses are sutable for those looking to develop basic digital skills or for those who need refresher training 
  • Supports staff to keep up with digitisation of records in the workplace 

Cost to the employer: £150 per person 

 

Request for Case Studies

Do you have a staff member who is passionate about care and would like to be part of a national campaign to promote careers in care? 

We know it is often difficult to find and keep staff and we want to help. Through raising Essex's profile and a targeted recruitment campaign we are aiming to help fill your vacancies.

Essex Case Studies

We are working with the Department of Health and Social Care to tackle the recruitment need by using the national campaign to gain coverage. The National Recruitment Campaign team are interested in having case studies from Essex to be part of the national campaign. We want to promote care in Essex through case studies of your amazing staff, to appear in the National Recruitment Campaign. The case studies are being themed, with a new one each month:

  • January - 'career switchers', those who have moved from another industry into adult social care
  • February - those supporting people with learning disabilities
  • March - those working in rural areas

To join in the campaign and raise the profile of care in Essex, please complete the attached case study form and submit it to everydayisdifferent@dhsc.gov.uk.

Essex targeted digital campaign

Once we have Essex case studies we intend on using digital channels including social media to target people with the right values and behaviours for a role in care and direct them to current vacancies in Essex. Having Essex case studies of care staff passionate about what they do will add weight to the local campaign as well. The Essex digital campaign will point the targeted local people to the national DWP vacancy page so, to ensure that we have all the available vacancies on the page, please support us by uploading your vacancies and keeping them up to date.

Why should you be interested?

The national campaign drive that started in October has seen an average of 26,600 new visits to the website each week, and vacancies are being filled. A targeted digital campaign will draw in more interest and more people applying for care roles, helping to fill your vacancies. Having Essex case studies will allow applicants to relate more with the jobs and will increase the profile of care in the county. Also, targeted digital channels including social media are powerful tools in recruitment drives. This approach has been used by the Council successfully in other recruitment campaigns eg. foster care.

What else can you do?

Upload your vacancies

Use campaign materials

Refer friends and family

Sign up to receive updates from the campaign

We're always interested to hear about your experiences of recruiting staff in the county, including if you have already advertised through the campaign, and how you think ECC can help. Please email us at MarketPortal@essex.gov.uk to tell us more, or if you have any questions regarding the above.

 

Free Workplace Health Promotion programme and MHFA England training

As a care provider it can be difficult to recruit and retain staff.  Traditionally the sector pay is low, staff working 24 hour shift patterns, often lone working and supporting clients in difficult circumstances.  Because of these challenges staff health and wellbeing often takes a back seat.

Essex Lifestyle Service is commissioned by the Essex County Council Public Health Team to deliver an innovative, evidenced based holistic health and wellbeing programme to support organisations in Essex.  The Stevenson Farmer Review "Thriving at Work", which was published in 2017, produced a set of 6 core standards which they encouraged workplaces to adopt, to improve the health and wellbeing of their workforce.  The Working Well programme and Accreditation can help you to achieve these Mental health core standards:

  1. Produce, implement and communicate a mental health at work plan
  2. Develop mental health awareness among employees
  3. Encourage open conversations about mental health and the support available when employees are struggling
  4. Provide employees with good working conditions
  5. Promote effective people management
  6. Routinely monitor employee mental health and wellbeing

We also know that over half of UK employers would like to do more to improve staff wellbeing, but don't feel they have the right training or guidance.  Your workforce is your most precious asset, what are you doing to protect it and secure your future and business edge?

The free Working Well programme offers a broad range of activities including: discounted (and free) MHFA England Mental Health First Aid Training (2 day Mental Health First Aider, 1 day Managers training and half day Mental Health Awareness plus the NEW 3 yearly refresher training.  They can also offer you a free anonymous staff needs survey, training for your own Workplace Health Champions, Managers and Staff Stress Awareness workshops, healthy eating and weight management programmes, physical activity support and guidance (including funding), a Working Well Accreditation quality mark and regular support from the Working Well team.  Our HR Specialist can work with you to audit your policies and procedures, and give additional training for managers to improve confidence to support staff with poor mental health in the workplace.

Click here to see the Flyer and for more details email: essex.workingwell@nhs.net

 

Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payment 2020

ECC are pleased to announce the Winter Fast Track Acceptance Payment has been introduced from 20th January 2020 to support providers that are able to accept placements from the available packages list. 

 The aim of the 2020 payment is to support all our domiciliary providers to secure resource that will help reduce the number of placements on the available packages list that is issued on a Tuesday and Thursday from SPT.  Providers will receive a one-off payment of £500 for each placement that is made from the available packages list.

The initiative commences on 20th January 2020 and is planned to continue until 31st March 2020.

 For any queries or further information please contact us at ContractManagementAdults@essex.gov.uk

 

Workforce strategy survey - what should we commit to do?

We want to help you recruit and retain staff. This workforce survey is for you to tell us how we (ECC), you and other health and care organisations can help. The Council is working to produce a care market workforce strategy (for adult social care services) and we need your views to help inform the document. Please take  5 minutes to tell us your thoughts and shape this important piece of work. The survey closes on Friday 31 January

Please email MarketPortal@Essex.gov.uk should you have any questions.

 

New Falls Improvement Group 

Do you have an interest in Falls Reduction? Mid Essex CCG have joined forces with partners from the local health and social care system to create a new Falls Improvement Group for mid Essex area. The group's aim is to work collaboratively on improving falls and would welcome care home partners to get involved. If you are interested in attending the group (6 weekly meetings at Broomfield) or would like to learn more about how you can reduce risk of falls, please email Louise Pinder (CCG Resilience Team) on louise.pinder1@nhs.net  

 

Annual health checks for adults with a learning disability

It is well recognised that people with learning disabilities have poorer physical and mental health than other people and die younger. Many of these deaths are avoidable. Annual Health Checks can be offered to anyone on the learning disability register aged 14 years and older. We know that not everyone registered with their GP in Essex as having a learning disability is getting an Annual Health Check (AHC). AHCs can identify undetected health conditions early, ensure there are effective ongoing treatments and establish trust and continuity of care. In line with the NHS Long Term Plan, Essex County Council is committed to reducing health inequalities faced by people with learning disabilities to lead longer, happier, healthier lives. Increasing the update of annual health checks was one of the measures identified to help. Please see the attached documents that outline what an individual with a learning disability can expect when they visit their GP and details of how Annual Health Checks work (gold standard).


Important reminder regarding assessments

To All Home Managers

Throughout the winter months it is important we work together to ensure our plans for keeping residents safe and in good health are robust. Older people are particularly vulnerable during winter months and we urge all social care providers to particularly consider capacity and contingency plans at this time. Please see attached Public Health England letter detailing winter illness preparation advice and NICE guidance for infection prevention.

As you will be aware hospitals will be under increasing pressure to keep bed capacity at a maximum during this period.  It is imperative that when you are requested to undertake an assessment of any kind for someone residing in a hospital that it is done as soon as possible after being notified of the request. If the person is then being discharged into a residential or nursing service, for example, it is important that the home admits/re-admits the person as soon as possible once the assessment decision has been made. Ideally this should be done on the same day as the referral request. The same standard should be applied 7 days a week.

Also please be reminded that for those leaving Broomfield Hospital, the Trusted Assessor can support in completing the preadmission assessment.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you in advance for your support over the winter months.

 

Free Sepsis Training

NHS Castle Point and Rochford CCG and NHS Southend CCG are offering Free Sepsis Training to care staff to build awareness on how to identify sepsis, what to do once identified and when to get help. This will be held on Wednesday 5th February 2020 from 9:30 to 12:30 at the Skylark Hotel Southend. To Find out more information and to book a place please see the attached flyer.

 

December 2019

 EU Settlement Scheme - Essex Update

The EU Settlement Scheme is the government programme which allows EEA & Swiss Citizens, as well as their non-EEA family members, to apply to remain in the UK after it leaves the EU.

In order to gain a full understanding of how to apply for the scheme and which status someone may be eligible for, please visit:

https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/applying-for-settled-status

The application can be done at home, using a device with an internet connection for the main application. There are a couple of options for the 'scanning documents' section, all of which require a download of the 'EU Exit: ID Document Check' app.

1) Android device with:

  • Android 6.0 and above - this can be found in the device settings
  • at least 135MB of storage space to install the app
  • connection to 3G, 4G or WiFi
  • NFC (Near-Field Communication) so the app can scan the document - this can be found in the device settings. If the phone can be used to pay for things using contactless, this means it has NFC and the app can be used

2) Apple Device (iPhone 7 or newer) with:

  • iOS 13.1 or newer -(to find the software version installed, go to Settings > General > About)
  • at least 120MB of storage space to install the app
  • connection to 3G, 4G or WiFi

3) A visit to your nearest digitally assisted application

  • Essex county council has now implemented Scanners in the following location to aid with settlement status applications:

    -Basildon Library

    -Chelmsford Library

    -Colchester Library (Colchester Borough Council)

    -Harlow Library

    These are free to access via a walk-in service. The librarians are trained to aid with the document scanning. Computers can also be booked per hour via the libraries website, in order to complete the rest of the application.

    If you choose to use our service please do not start your online application before your document has been scanned.

    All applicants must attend, including children, as a photo needs to be taken of each applicant during the process.

    We do not charge for this service. You do not need to book an appointment, but you may need to wait for a member of staff to be available before you can be seen.

    You will need to bring with you:

    • a current valid biometric EU, EEA or Swiss passport or Biometric Residence Card for each applicant
    • a mobile phone that can receive text messages
    • an email address to use to complete your application.

    We will not need to keep your ID document and in most cases you should not be asked to send your passport anywhere else after it has been scanned.

    For further information regarding the scheme within Essex, the libraries or anything similar, please go to: https://libraries.essex.gov.uk/facilities-and-charges/european-settlement-scheme-readers/
  • Tendring District Council has benefitted from the help of a worker from Migrant UK. This worker is available to help understand the EU settlement scheme and advise on what an individual may need to do to ensure that rights are protected and they can continue living in the UK after it leaves the EU. David is running drop in sessions from 10am - 2pm at 88-90 Pier Avenue, CO15 1TN. Appointments can also be made by contacting: euss@migranthelpuk.org

 

Subsidised Training Opportunities 

Adult Community Learning (ACL) in partnership with Essex County Council Economic Growth team are delighted to offer a number of subsidised training opportunities to the care provider market. These training programmes aim to support the development of care management skills, leadership and team skills, and digital skills. In addition to these programmes, there is the opportunity to undertake unit accreditation towards achieving a L4 Adult Social Care Diploma.

 The training is subsidised by Essex County Council and there are a limited number of places on each programme.

Please see attached flyer for course information and contact details.

 

Flu vaccinations for care sector staff

 Please be reminded that frontline care staff are eligible for free flu vaccinations on the NHS. As an added incentive Public Health England and the NHS will be giving certificates to organisations who ensure their staff are vaccinated. Further details are within the flyer attached.

We urge you to ensure your staff receive the vaccine for the safety of those in their care.

 

Meaningful Lives Facebook Channel - help us spread the word 

The Meaningful Lives Facebook channel is live and we would appreciate your help by sharing the link to help get the message out across Essex and for the new page to start gaining a profile. The Meaningful Lives Matter program is the biggest transformation program in Essex and is a new countywide movement to transform the lives of children and adults with learning disability and/or autism in Essex.  The page is designed to inform our Learning Disability & Autism communities about the services we offer, events, news updates and awareness campaigns. Access the page here: www.facebook.com/MeaningfulLivesEssex/

We would also welcome any uplifting or interesting stories from your schemes and residents for consideration to include in the pages. Please send these to Andrew.Bennett@essex.gov.uk

 

National Medicines Safety Improvement Programme

UCLPartners has launched a programme of work to support improvements in the safety of medicines administration in care homes. This work is part of the National Medicines Safety Improvement Programme, commissioned by NHS England and NHS Improvement and being led in your region by the UCLPartners Patient Safety Collaborative. This is an important programme to try and reduce the harm suffered by people living in care homes on the occasions where medicines are not given as intended. You can read more about the programme in the attached document.

 To help with this work, we would like to invite you to complete an e-survey on behalf of your care home - you can complete the survey by following this link - https://engage.improvement.nhs.uk/psmu/care-homes/. The deadline for the survey is 31 January 2020. Your responses will be treated in confidence, and will help to shape what the national programme will look like and how UCLPartners can support you.

 If you would like to discuss this survey or the programme further please contact Emma Mordaunt (emma.mordaunt@uclpartners.com) or Mandeep Butt (Mandeep.Butt@uclpartners.com).

 

November 2019

 

Digital solution to support people using Direct Payments

As part of the Choice and Control transformation programme where Essex County Council are aiming to embed personalisation across all that we do in Adult Social Care, we are undertaking a test and learn project to see if we can improve and broaden our offer to people who receive Direct Payments.  This will involve trying out a digital solution that allows people to manage their direct payment and place orders for services through an online platform. 

The platform offers the following functionality.

 The opportunity for the adult to:

  • See their support plan
  • Purchase their care and support through an e-market place
  • Recruit PA's
  • Manage time sheets and invoices
  • Pay providers quickly and efficiently
  • See their budget and what their contribution/assessed charge is
  • Set up a direct debit to pay their assessed charge

We are planning to undertake the test and learn to see how this works and whether it can become part of the offer.  We will run the test and learn in the Mid Quadrant with a mixed group of adults form April to December 2020.

If you support someone who pays for their care via a direct payment this may impact upon you.  Once we have recruited the adults to be part of the test and learn we will contact the providers that work with them to ensure that the system works smoothly and that the payment mechanisms are set up properly.

We would appreciate your support and co-operation throughout this process if it involves your organisation.

For Further information contact Stephen Watt stephen.watt@essex.gov.uk

 

Annual Provider Relationship Survey 

The Annual Provider Relationship Survey is live and we need as many care provider responses as possible. Please click the link below to access the survey.

CLICK HERE TO TAKE PART.

Your feedback is extremely valuable and the data obtained from your anonymised answers will be used by senior managers and directors at Essex County Council to help plan future activity.

The survey, which is being conducted by an external agency Enventure Research, is made up of quick and easy to answer questions which you can complete in around 10 minutes.

Please forward the link above onto your teams so they too can take part.

If you have any questions about completing or accessing the questionnaire, please call the survey helpline on 0800 0092 117 or email helpline@enventure.co.uk  

 

Care Worker Survey Results

We're pleased to announce the care worker survey results are now available and can be accessed here. Thank you again to everyone who responded, the responses you gave will be used to inform ECCs future workforce activity. If you have any questions or comments on the findings please email ContractManagementAdults@essex.gov.uk. You can also find useful information to support recruitment and retention on our Hub workforce pages.

 

EPUT Care Home Training Provision Review

EPUT would like your feedback on the training currently provided and have produced this short questionnaire.

Please return your completed questionnaire to Sharon Earl, Committee Secretary, by e-mail sharon.earl@nhs.net, by post 12 Castle Road, Rayleigh, Essex SS6 7QF or over the telephone Tel: 01268 464508.

 

E-Procurement Update

Thank you to those who attended our E-Procurement workshop on the 27/09/2019, your feedback is very valuable to our project team. Please note, you can obtain a copy of the slides and the feedback from this event on the provider hub. 

We are hoping this article enhances your knowledge of our E-Procurement project, particularly for those who were unable to attend our workshop and for those who did, this article should serve as a progress update.

What is E-Procurement

E-Procurement is a digital approach to the sourcing of Domiciliary Care. We recognise that that there are a number of efficiencies that can be realised through commissioning requests for care via a digital platform for both Providers and Essex County Council (ECC).

Our Journey so far

Our Project Team have been understanding what methods are currently used to source Domiciliary Care through engagement with our Service Placement Team (SPT), Adult Operations and our Providers. We have held a series of workshops and these have provided us with a comprehensive overview of 'as is' processes and increased insight in relation to shortcomings with current ways of working for both ECC and Providers.

The feedback obtained from these workshops will help to inform improved 'to be' processes and support with the building of system requirements.

Further to the above, the Project Team are actively engaging with potential Suppliers of the Technology and understanding the digital capabilities of each solution being offered in order to ensure the product chosen works effectively, not only for ECC but equally crucial, our Providers.

In respect of timelines for implementation, our Project Team are currently giving this careful consideration, in order to ensure we have taken onboard feedback and undertaken 'due diligence', prior to rolling out our final solution. In view of this, it is highly likely there will be a pilot during 2020, followed by a phased implementation in 2021.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for any contributions made to our E-Procurement project to date and we will keep you informed with our progress and upcoming opportunities to get involved.  If you would like further information on the project or how you can be involved in the pilot please contact the project team via jaymie.skelley2@essex.gov.uk

 

National Safeguarding Adults Week - 18th to 24th November 2019

 During this year's National Safeguarding Adult's Week, the Essex Safeguarding Adults Board are encouraging Essex residents to improve their understanding of some of the major adult safeguarding issues that agencies tackle within Essex.  Over 7 days there will be 7 different safeguarding issues that will be explored through 1-minute videos of true stories of real people from Essex, Southend and Thurrock. The campaign will highlight the information that people can access to get help and support for themselves and others who may be suffering from abuse. To find out more and watch the videos, visit the Essex Safeguarding Adults Board website.

 

Helping to prevent infection

Please see attached a quick guide for managers and staff in care homes, produced by NICE and SCIE.

 

Short-Term Enablement Tender opportunity

Essex County Council have launched a tender for Short-Term Enablement services across Essex in five geographical lots.

To view the tender documents and to make a submission, please go to:  https://www.delta-esourcing.com using access code 3A4ES9YVD8.

Clarifications must be raised via BIP Delta messaging system before deadline of 5pm on 2nd December 2019 & all bids must be submitted by 12 noon on Wednesday 11th December.

For more information on the tender click here.

 

NHS Mail Launch Event

Attend the launch event on 20 November to find out more - access the Flyer and Agenda

The NHS will stop using fax machines from April 2020.

NHSmail (...@nhs.net) is recognised as the secure email service across the NHS.

All care sector providers can have free access to NHSmail on completion of the NHS DSP toolkit.  Information on how to complete the toolkit is available here (https://www.digitalsocialcare.co.uk/latest-guidance/completing-entry-level/) and a video from care providers promotes the benefits (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELdLFGbNxPs). 

For help and support please contact - england.easttransformation@nhs.net

 

 

Request for user groups to trial new dementia mobile app

How Do I? have developed a mobile app to help those living with dementia and are looking for test and learn user groups to take part in a 6 week trial to try the product before it is released next year.  The app, which is support by the Alzheimer's Society Accelerator Programme, shows videos to the user to help with completing tasks or remembering an activity and you can find more information on the How Do I? website, including how to take part.

 

Updated Medicines Management Guidance

ECC has updated its medicines management standards for providers and you can access the new document here.

 

Winter Preparedness advice from Public Health England

Public Health England have produced advice and support to assist with your preparations for infectious illnesses over the winter period. Please click on the links below for more information.

Guidance on the management of outbreaks of influenza like illness (ILI) in care homes

Winter Illness Preparation Advice for all Care Homes in the East of England

 

NHS Mental Capacity Assessments Guide 

Do you know how to support adults with communication difficulties?

If you were in a foreign country where you didn't speak the language or only spoke a few words. Would you feel confident to make a complicated
decision? Would you want someone to make an important decision for you because you couldn't communicate your choice? This is what life can feel like for an adult with a communication difficulty.
Access the mental capacity assessments guide for professionals here.

 

October 2019

 

IRN Contract: Third Party Top Ups

The Third Party Top Up process has changed. Third Party Top Ups may apply when an Adult has chosen accommodation that is more than the amount specified in the adult's personal budget

The new changes consist of

  • ECC will collect the top up from the third party
  • ECC will pay the provider the gross amount of the placement
  • ECC will undertake due diligence to ensure the third party is able to commit to the top up

 

National Recruitment Campaign

The 2019/20 campaign has launched. Be part of the national recruitment campaign for social care "When you care, every day makes a difference". Advertise your vacancies and help to promote the sector to new talent. Click here to find out more.

 

Local System Workshop Mid & South

The first Local System Workshop will be held on 28 November 2019 at Barleylands. To book a place please choose from the below:

Homecare Services (AM) - https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/local-system-workshop-mid-south-homecare-tickets-76263180225

Residential Services (PM) - https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/local-system-workshop-mid-south-residential-services-tickets-76264058853

 

ECC's 4th Annual Provider Relationship Survey

Enventure Research Ltd has been commissioned to conduct the annual provider relationship survey, now in its fourth year! The survey, which is completed by both ECC employees and care providers can be accessed here - Relationship Survey.

The results give Essex County Council a measurement of how relationships between Council staff and care providers are changing over time. Each survey identifies areas of focus which are then worked on throughout the year. You can find further information <a href="https://eur02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.livingwellessex.org%2Fvision%2Fmarket-shaping%2Fprovider-relationship-management%2Fannual-relationship-management-survey%2F&data=02%7C01%7C%7Cca0fcb556e064bbd9c1008d74e453b74%7Ca8b4324f155c4215a0f17ed8cc9a992f%7C0%7C0%7C637063931575400934&sdata=EmUyQgoDSC9zDHea4270N

 

Last Updated: 08 July 2020

 

rating button