Alarm at CMA Guidance and Support from RWK

At the conference, Royds Withy King spoke of their concern at the impact of the new proposals in the report from the CMA enquiry into the care market and offer support to Care Association members. They emphasis that their focus is to protect the Care Provider whereas the CMA look to protect the consumer only.

"It is now becoming clearer to us that it is imperative that care providers review their service user contracts. There is more information about our service user contracts on our website here and there are downloadable documents with more information below.

The Care Association Alliance say: 

"The draft CMA Guidance came out last week and is far more extensive than we expected. As a result we think most providers are going to have to make changes to their contracts and admissions processes in order to be compliant, particularly around the following:

1.       The provision of prescribed information to prospective residents at three separate stages: on first contact, before they accept an offer of a place and on confirmation and finalisation of the offer

2.       Charging of upfront fees and deposits

3.       Charging fees on death.

4.       Increasing fees

5.       The use of guarantors

6.       FNC payments

7.       Fees when a person is absent"

Royds Withy King are offering a model contract with guidance notes at discounted rates (with 5% rebate for the care association). The discount is dependent upon the numbers of members who sign up. There is a separate contract for residential/nursing and homecare."

They are also offering a bespoke option if providers want a tailored version of the contract and detailed advice on implementation.

These attachments provide full details:

Conference Commentary, Slides and Downloads

The C&SW Conference enjoyed record numbers of delegates and exhibitors this year and for the first time was sponsored by three of our Commercial Partners; Care Planner, Nurseline Healthcare and Nourish Care. The delegate numbers were north of 150 and the exhibitors numbered around 23.

Opening the day: David Smallacombe (CEO Care and Support West) opened the day by inviting the three sponsors to say a few words about why they had decided to become commercial partners with C&SW and why in particular they had agreed to sponsor the event.  He went on to set out the kind of support C&SW members could expect from him, Angela Roberts (Dep CEO), Mik Alban (Development Director) and Barbara Harris (IT support and newsletter writer) and closed his introduction by inviting non-members present to sign up to be a C&SW member via a special conference day deal on cost.  

The keynote speakers were Mei-Ling Huang (Royds Withy King Legal) and Professor Martin Green (Care England) in the morning and Deborah Ivanova (CQC) and Mick Feather (Citation --- also a C&SW commercial partner) in the afternoon. The remaining time in both the morning and afternoon programme was taken up with round table delegate discussions focused on what the keynote speakers had presented. The keynote PPT slides can be accessed via the links in this document; notes from the round table discussions are both on the C&SW web site and can be accessed here: Notes on Innovation

Mei-Ling’s presentation and talk focused on Service User Contracts, CQC and Local Authority Commissioners while Martin's presentation highlighted the importance of Sustainability, Maintenance and Growth. Both were variously critical of Local Authority Commissioners, CQC and Central Government and in particular Martin expressed his dissatisfaction with the latest boost to health funding making a total investment from government of £148b while social care sits at £18b. Mei wondered about local authority processes and highlighted the recent Competition Market Authority’s move to challenge care provider self-funder service users contracts and warned that both the CMA and CQC would be looking to focus on these. One of the highlights of the morning was a challenge to Martin Green from the delegate audience by a local authority commissioner. A couple of sparing rounds between them certainly livened up the audience!! 

The afternoon session saw a focus in Debbie's presentation on CQC and its task to Maintain Quality in Regulated Services while Mick chose to go with Improving Care Ratings and Keeping Quality Visible. Debbie, as you will see from her PPT slides had a great deal to say about the first element of the four CQC strategic priorities i.e. 1. encouraging improvement through innovation and sustainability in care. Mick's presentation took the audience through a number of the new KLOE’s and linked them to how best providers can improve their care ratings at the same time as keeping quality firmly at the centre of their work in order to obtain an Outstanding rating. He reminded people that always aiming for Outstanding is the route to take rather than being happy with Good!!

Some comments from speakers and delegates/Exhibitors

I thought it was a great event.  Thanks very much for allowing us to speak.  The joint session with Martin Green was fun and, I think, useful.

My reflections on the day are that it was great to see such a big and varied group of providers, managers and others come together all with a view to improving care and strengthening the sector.  There are a lot of issues to be managed these days but it’s heartening to know that CSW members have the can-do spirit and determination required not just to “stay alive” but to thrive. 

I thought the conference was an excellent opportunity for the care sector to come together, and to look at the current challenges, but also think about the way in which we can develop a diversify to meet these challenges”

Thanks for organising such a stimulating conference. It was useful to have the opportunity to be both a delegate and an exhibitor which is a helpful feature of C&SW conferences. It was perhaps the smoothest of starts that I have had: very easy to get set up and made to feel welcome. The day was well organised. 

Closing the day Len Collacott (Chair of C&SW) said:

"Firstly a few thankyous.  I am sure we all agree that this has been, as usual, a great conference. That takes a great amount of work so we need to thank David Smallacombe for his time energy and efforts (and his team). And a great thank you to all our thought provoking speakers. I wanted to do a brief recap of today’s event and mark out some of what I thought were the highlights.

·         Trevor from Nurseline- a great introduction. I have to question him- when he said ‘we will be using this service in 50 years’ time’- not me mate- at my age. We will have to get going a lot quicker than that!

·         Mei Ling- Always our X factor- often the fear factor- and always reminds me of the Gladiators. Contenders, are you ready?!

·         Martin Green- as entertaining as ever. This time he came as a double act with Vince, the commissioner from BANES.  We have to give a 10/10 to Vince for his willingness to stand his corner. It was good to have 3 rounds between Martin and Vince. Many thanks.

·         Debbie- Terrific to get the thoughts direct from the horse’s mouth of CQC. I do have to wonder though about the variance between what Debbie said about CQC looking to give support and guidance and what Martin said about CQC and its culture of being too ready to take enforcement action.

.         Mik Feather- A great opening song. What I took from Mik’s performance was from the same song sheet as Sean Fitzpatrick, the former All Blacks captain who said ‘In order to win, you just have to do the simple things well’ That is very true and his advice to remain calm when the CQC inspector arrives is very valid.

So, we face challenges. The biggest one is the integration of health and social care. That needs to be taken on seriously and speeded up. Martin has just told us the figures. A budget of £148billion for health and £18billion for social care. I want us to get our hands on a good deal of that because I am convinced that we, our industry, can provide much better value for money with it and we will all benefit.

Many thanks for attending today and have a safe journey home."

 

Mik Alban's 'Words from the Care Face'

What do you think social care staff are worth?

Our The issues we face report was developed from a series of conversations with Registered Managers and people providing care and support services. It is designed to provide a voice for the sector based on the actual experiences of those who work in it. 

It is well documented that the sector is facing significant pressures not least in relation to insufficient funding and an inability to recruit and retain the staff it needs. In order for the sector to survive never mind thrive, things will have to change. We make a series of recommendations throughout the report which are designed to resolve the issues we face. We would like to use this blog to share some of these recommendations with you and to get your thoughts.

In their 2017 ‘The adult social care sector and workforce’ report, Skills for Care highlight that the average staff turnover for staff directly employed in the adult social care sector is 32% ad that this rises to 39.5% for front line care workers. The average turnover rate across all sectors is estimated to be in the region of 15% so the social care sector clearly has a specific problem in retaining staff.  

When we spoke to managers about this they were clear that:

#  staff recruitment and retention are as bad as it has ever been despite them dedicating more time and effort to it.

#  Non-UK nationals are a vital part of many staff teams. Without them many services would increasingly struggle to operate.

#  Pay rates are a key issue. Care and support work is not a minimum wage job and staff can earn the same or more in other sectors without the same level of stress, responsibility and disruption to their lives.

#  Many people are either unable or unwilling to work the anti-social hours and shift patterns required in social care.

The Care and Support Statutory Guidance (The statutory guidance to the Care Act 2014) which is the guidance that local authorities need to follow states:

“People working in the care sector play a central role in providing high quality services. Local authorities must consider how to help foster, enhance and appropriately incentivise this vital workforce to underpin effective, high quality services ...” (Chapter 4.28)

“It should also allow retention of staff commensurate with delivering services to the agreed quality, and encourage innovation and improvement”. (Chapter 4.31)

There is clearly work to do.

In order to create a payment model for staff which would encourage their recruitment and retention and enable the sector to meet the requirements society has of it both now and in the future, we recommend:

1.    Basic rates of pay for front line care and support staff need to be sufficiently above the National Minimum / Living Wage to enable the sector to recruit the staff it needs.

2.    The ‘actual’ Living Wage as advocated by the Living Wage Foundation is used as a starting point. This is currently £8.75 an hour outside London. We believe staff working in this sector deserve an actual living wage. Using this as the baseline values staff and sends out the right message.

3.    There should be a pay enhancement to recompense staff for working anti-social hours.

4.    There should be a pay enhancement for staff who are required to work split shifts or to lone work.

5.    There should be a pay enhancement for staff who are required to support or care for people with complex needs.

6.    There should be a pay enhancement to reward experience / length of service.

7.    There should be further incentivising premiums for staff to take on greater levels of responsibility i.e. Senior Carers, Senior Support Workers, Team Leaders, Deputy Managers.  

What are your thoughts? Will the sector survive unless we can financially reward people properly for the work that they do?

If you are interested in looking at the full ‘The issues we face’ report, you can download a copy here.

C&SW CARE AWARDS: FINALISTS and GALA DINNER

There was a record number of nominations this year demonstrating the breadth of care delivered by social care providers across the region and beyond. The panel met in June to discuss the nominees and agreed on the finalists in each category. You can see the list here .

Bookings are now being taken for the Awards Gala Dinner at the Ashton Gate Football Stadium on 20th October. You can make your booking here

STOP ABUSE WEEK

It is Stop Abuse Week next week. It's important that the care sector get behind this initiative to help stamp out abuse. Here are some materials to help improve awareness.

Here are 10 signs of possible Adult Abuse cited by Bristol Safeguarding team; you can share these with staff.

  1. Look out for unexplained bruises and injuries
  2. Be alert to subtle changes in behaviour – take note if is someone very subdued, has lost their self-esteem or changes how they act in the presence of a particular person
  3. If a person begins to isolate themselves and stops seeing friends and family it may be a sign that something is wrong
  4. Any change in appetite and weight loss or gain can be a cause for concern
  5. Unexplained signs of distress, tearfulness or anger may signal a problem
  6. If someone has possessions go missing, an unexplained lack of money or failure to pay bills this may be a sign of financial abuse
  7. Being unclean, unkempt or hungry may signal neglect or self-neglect
  8. Discouraging visits from relatives or friends on a regular basis should raise alarm bell
  9. Missed appointments – failing to show up at GP appointments or regular meetings could be a cause for concern
  10. If someone shows unusual distress at being close to someone, or at receiving personal care, this could be a sign of physical or sexual abuse

Signs of abuse can often be difficult to detect, so it’s important to trust your gut instinct. If in doubt, speak out.

Registered Managers Network 2018-2019: Book Now for Year 5!

Care and Support West run the well received Registered Manager’s Network sessions in B&NES, Bristol, North Somerset and South Glos in conjunction with Skills for Care. We start our fifth year in July.

See below for details of our new programme. 

Click here to register your interest

Principles of RMN sessions:

  • To share thoughts, ideas and resources to help each other to meet these requirements as clearly and unambiguously as possible. Presentations and resources from the Network sessions will be made available to participants via a special web page on the Care and Support West website.
  • A focus on participants supporting each other to raise our game collectively in line with the importance of complying with CQC’s requirements. 
  • A ‘problem shared is a problem halved’ slot: The opportunity for participants to raise issues that are affecting them; . Whether this is dealing with a particular situation or with difficult individuals, again it will be an opportunity to share experiences and ideas.
  • Pertinent updates. EG: At the first session this will be around the General Data Protection Regulation requirements which will be incoming from the end of May.

The Session Content:

Session 1 Well Lead: a focus on how we best evidence a service is being well led

Session 2 will be the part one of two parts focusing on meeting CQC’s Key Lines of Enquiry requirements as effectively as possible

Session 3 will be the part two of two parts focusing on meeting CQC’s Key Lines of Enquiry requirements as effectively as possible

If you are not a participant already and are interested in joining the Registered Manager’s Network in your area, then please contact Mik Alban on mik.alban@careandsupportwest.com or 07788 498909.

Costs

£70 per participant for all 3 sessions (equivalent to £23.33 a session). making this a cost effective networking and Continuous Professional Development opportunity.

Click here to register your interest

 

Staff Rewarded by Fire Walk!

Catherine Twine-Kelly is the Managing Director at Supported Independence Ltd. She told us about their approach to rewarding staff.

Each year SI holds a surprise event for its staff to thank them for all their hard work, dedication and commitment.  This has been clearly demonstrated with the recent snow, with staff staying over night and walking up to 4 miles to get into work!

The surprise was a fire walking event, where staff where amazed to see the burning logs! They found they had other treats in store were when they first had to prove their skills in chopping wood with their bare hands and breaking pointed arrows against their throat!

Everyone left on a high and now we just have to plan for next year! 

Winash Community Based Activities

Winash Care Home have been very active in promoting community and intergenerational activity so we are delighted that 2018 started really well for us.

We were granted books through The Big Issue as part of their big book giveaway initiative, to support us in our reading to Nursery children from next door; but in addition they also did a double page spread in the national magazine as part of mental health awareness week. The spread was regarding the two way benefits of our intergenerational activities.

Additionally, Winash Wingers, were awarded a grant from The Big Lottery. The money is to make an inter-generational 'Communi-tree', and we have enlisted Wyldwood Arts to deliver the project. Our plan is to work with a range of local community groups. So far, we have worked with local 6th formers, next on the list will be Nursery children, followed by the local YMCA, and 3 Brownie groups. The end project will be a multi- sensory tree. Which will be on public display at 'Clevedon flower show'.

CINTRE: Community based activities supporting users

Sound Minds: Music for Mental Health: As we are understanding the positive impacts of music more and more and because it runs so deeply through the veins of Bristol, we have organised a little evening of music to both celebrate and raise awareness of how it can make a great difference, particularly to those most in need. The event is to be held at the Leftbank on 128 Cheltenham Rd, on the 27th of April 2018. There will be great music, excellent drinks and spectacular dancing. All proceeds are going to Cintre to help kick start a music project for service users. This Facebook link has more details and regular updates on bands playing, DJ sets and general important information: https://www.facebook.com/events/2075813089330309/

Lunch Club: We have been awarded just under £5,000 to start a Community Lunch Club at Invia!
Thanks to the Big Lottery Fund we will be setting up a Lunch Club for service users to learn to cook, eat together and meet new friends.
Service users will get:
- Free cooking lessons
- Free meals
- A chance to meet new people
- Lessons in nutrition, health and safety in the kitchen and hygiene around food
- Your travel to and from Invia paid for

Dan's Vlog - Work Experience: Meet Dan who is supported by Cintre Reachout, he has recently started volunteering for a local charity shop to gain skills for the workplace. You can watch this 'chatty' video led by Dan to learn more of how his Cintre Support Workers are helping him. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWUvJTj0yGo&t=75s

Vegetarian Week: Between the 14th and the 20th of May it is Vegetarian Week, where lots of people celebrate vegetarian food and how it helps with health and the environment.
We have been awarded over £100 to spend on a Vegetarian Taster Session at Invia.
We will be cooking a three course meal for over 30 people where you are all invited to come along and enjoy some vegetarian tasters for free!
Don’t worry if you don’t like vegetables, we will be coming up with some delicious recipes for you to experience vegetarian food in a positive way.

 

Care Home Open Day 21st April

Care Home Open Day is upon us yet again!

With CQC emphasis on community links, Care Home Open Day is a really important initiative that can help you shine at the next assessment. You can find out more about it from their website

In 2018, the official day is 21st April but you can choose a date that suits you. Member Able Care have chosen 5th April because it works better for them for their open day at HENGROVE LODGE CARE HOME:  in Petherton Road. The idea behind the day is to encourage local people to visit care homes in their community and to work together to develop better relationships.

This important connection is something that Hengrove Lodge has nurtured and the home is already acting as a community hub, including regular visits from the Stay and Play Group from Southern Links Children’s Centre.

As part of the Care Home Open Day 2018 and working with LinkAge, Hengrove Lodge is hosting an afternoon with tea and cakes and the opportunity to get involved in flower arranging with Don Gay’s Florist who are based nearby.  Members of Christ Church Coffee Group have been invited to join in along with residents and their families.  You can see the full programme for the day under our page on the website by visiting www.carehomeopenday.org.uk.

Sam Hawker, AbleCare Homes Director said: "This is a great way to show the excellent services on offer and the fantastic work that goes on at Hengrove Lodge.  Some people still have misconceptions about care homes so we are keen to dispel any myths and for people to come and have a look around, meet the staff and our residents."

GDPR Are You Ready

Care & Support West will also be affected by GDPR ; watch out for or communications with you to make sure we are compliant.

In the mean time with new rules coming on stream on 25th May, it is important to be prepared.

You will also be affected with regards to business information and also staff information. However there is a lot of help and advice available, here is a round up of the best we have come across.

  1. GDPR: Impact on business
  2. Get ready for GDPR day
  3. Dispelling Myths about Data Protection and GDPR
  4. GDPR: Fine or Fined?
  5. GDPR and Consent
  • Guides from Citation
  1. GDPR Readiness Assessment
  2. Free Guide to GDPR
Sleep In Payments Crisis

Below is the letter we have sent to our members. Whoever you are, member or not, if you are in the care sector, this is really important and we need to support t his campaign!

The Care Alliance Association has asked us to put out this message about the real crisis facing social care because of the recent sleep in payments ruling. It is really important; please read it and if you haven't already done so and you are affected, please complete the survey and look at what else you can do to support the campaign.

Below you will find

  • a notice saying that the deadline has been extended until 9th March 
  • the link to the campaign
  • the original e-mail outlining what people can do to support the campaign, this includes lobbying including social media and a day of action

Thank you,
 
David Smallacombe, CEO                                       Angela Roberts, Deputy CEO
07860 439 809                                                         07535 820 552
David.smallacombe@careandsupportwest.com      angela.roberts@careandsupportwest.com

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  • Sleep In Crisis campaign. 

 
A quick note that the survey deadline has been extended to close of business Friday 9th March. 
 
We appreciate the survey does take time and resources to complete however this is an essential building block in providing new data to inform the collective public affairs campaign.  Without a robust dataset we are left in a poorer influencing position.
We have been encouraged by organisations who have told us that by completing the survey has been a useful exercise, as well as providing a useful basis for briefing local parliamentarians. 
 
Every good wish - and I look forward to catching up with you and members in the future. 
 
Rhidian Hughes
Chief Executive | VODG (Voluntary Organisations Disability Group)
www.vodg.org.uk | 0793 113 1724 | rhidian.hughes@vodg.org.uk | @rhidianhughes

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  • Sleep In Crisis e-mail

 
We are now at the point where it is easy for Government to continue to do nothing to support providers affected by the sleep in payments crisis. A working group/alliance has come together - #SolveSleepIns Alliance  - for a time-limited basis, to ensure a full consolidated and coordinated effort on all matters about the payments crisis. Through this email I am summarising some key developments in the hope that you could share with CAA members in order that we can now extend our reach CEOs and owners. (The public affairs briefings are restricted to CAA and your members, the template letter is not.)
 
Sector-led survey to identify current and future impacts
 
The Laing Buisson and Frontier Economics research seeks to calculate (again) the back pay liabilities in the sector there is a very urgent need for an independent assessment about the impact that the sleep in payments is having on service arrangements, workforce and sector stability.
 
We are very grateful to Agenda Consulting and Trowers & Hamlins LLP who have stepped forward to undertake independent research.
 

  • Survey

Their survey is now live and can be accessed via:
www.sleepinsurvey.org.uk

It would be of great help if you could also share news of this story…
https://www.vodg.org.uk/press-releases/independent-survey-to-assess-impact-of-sleep-in-pay-crisis-on-future-of-social-care/

…and the survey link above with your members and encourage further action locally.
Public affairs
There has been a great deal of public affairs work in recent months, and with some successes. Despite our recent campaign wins – getting Labour front bench support and having the Prime Minister questioned directly on sleep-ins at PMQs amongst many others - getting the Government to act won’t be easy. So now is the time for the sector to come together to ramp up approaches to all parliamentarians.
 
Attached to this email is a letter which, if CAA members could cascade down to chief executives and owners, would help the sector wide campaign. Finding email contact details and changing the letter should take less than five minutes for each constituency – and make a big impact.
 
If possible it would be helpful to have any responses sent toresearch.policy@vodg.org.uk to ensure sector coordination.
 
Single day of action
 
We need a single day of action in April/May as a pre-planned campaign tool to push the Government to act on sleep-ins before it’s too late.
 
Options could include a mass lobby of Parliament, where a number of people come to Westminster on the same day to meet with their Parliamentarians, a regional/local lobby where providers assist visits to their Parliamentarians in their local offices and a virtual lobby where the networks of all providers (including families, staff and others) are engaged to call and email their Parliamentarians on a specific day with a message about this issue. We believe that the most effective campaign activity may be a strategic combination of all three of the options mentioned.
 
To plan this, we need to get an idea of what everyone might be able to do.  Can you please respond to the three questions below by the end of February please?
 
1.       Can you commit to urging people you support / their families / carers to attend a day at Westminster to lobby Parliamentarians? If yes, how many? What constituencies would they be from?
 
2.       Can you commit to participating locally by urging people you support / their families / carers to their MP’s local office or surgery? If yes, how many in which constituencies?
 
3.       Can you commit to participating by promoting to your staff, volunteers and other relevant contacts that they make a phone call in support of our campaign including any mailing lists and social media outlets you currently use? Approximately how many people would this be to and in which constituencies are they likely to be based?
 
Please email research.policy@vodg.org.uk with your responses by 28 February 2018. Alternatively if CAA or individual associations wish to collate regional responses that would be helpful too. 
 
Your response will allow us to know what we are working with to strategically plan the most effective campaign action. And we need to start planning now.   
 
Social media
 
For those individuals and organisations that are in a position to comment and share publicly please use these hashtags in the weeks ahead:
#SolveSleepIns
#StopSleepInCrisis

CINTRE Extends Community Support with New Initiatives for Service Users

Cintre has a new Community Hub, where staff and service users across the charity meet to partake in diverse social events. Latest activity was "Just Pool-ing Around", at the local All Stars Snooker and Pool Hall. 7 teams of 2 each, 1 staff member and 1 service user per team. The competition was friendly but fierce and with an unblemished record of 6 wins out of 6, Majid and Colin were victorious! Soon in February there will another game of Football – and it will be the Hub’s, 4th match. The Hub is great because it includes staff and service users of all ages and abilities. Creating confidence and helping to build networks

STAMP OUT SOLITUDE CAMPAIGN (SOS). We are raising money towards Community Hub activities, and to end loneliness for adults with complex needs. So far we have raised £87.00 from a raffle at Christmas Party,. Please read article link.

VLOGS FOR SERVICE USERS: In another initiative to understand support needs, we are starting Vlogs with service users to begin an insight into their lives, and support. Here is a sample video featuring Sam, who lives at Cintre In-Via Supported Living Service.

C&SW 2018/19 Cost Pressures Report Available Now

Care and Support West produce a report each year on the Cost Pressures facing the sector every year; these are used in dialogue where we represent the sector. It is sent to both Local Authority and CCG commissioners within B&NES, Bristol, North Somerset and South Glos as well as relevant councillors and local MPs.

These are difficult times and we represent the entire sector in this dialogue, not just members. If you are not currently a Care and Support West member and are interested in supporting this work then you can find out more about C&SW membership

Our new 2018/19 Cost Pressures report can be found here

Developed from responses to a questionnaire, the report takes the stormy national discussions on the perfect storm brewing in relation to the funding of Social Care, and gives a local viewpoint, looking at what can be done to avoid it. 

We urge you to read the report. There is some useful information contained within it which can help you make your own case in relation to funding and to respond to the ongoing consultations

If you have any comments or feedback about the report then you can get in touch by emailing Mik Alban at mik.alban@careandsupportwest.com.

The Great Social Care Pass the Parcel Game

It seems that the music paused for a moment and the Social Care parcel has been left in another pair of hands! When Damien Green announced the Green Paper on how to fund and manage social care in the context of rapidly growing demand there was a kerfuffle. 

Care Industry News focused on the ADASS response; namely that the sector is already at tipping point with a funding gap. Secondly, where the Green Paper has a focus on the ageing population, Leonard Cheshire  point out that the Disabilities (Physical and Learning) Sector is just as big and the crisis is a "blight on the daily lives of disabled people up and down the country". The Guardian called the announcement a missed opportunity, it failed not just to take into account younger people in need of care and the disabled but failed to roll into it the long promised 'Carers Strategy' and failed to incorporate carer representation. The Local Government Association called for councils to have a key role in defining and shaping local care and again calling for immediate action to address immediate short term pressures.

However there was a broad welcome to the direction of travel albeit with a call for greater urgency and the need to build upon the inter-dependency of Health and Social Care.

At the time Jeremy Hunt said “We are committed to reforming social care to ensure we can guarantee everyone dignity and security in old age. It is important we consider a wide variety of views on the future of the social care system – as our ageing population continues to grow it is absolutely vital that we get this right.” So, is it surprising that Hunt's remit has been extended to Social Care and he has picked up responsibility for the Green Paper? Possibly it was the only and inevitable solution since Green's departure from the government.

But, is this extended role a substantive change?  The Financial Times tells us there is a sceptical response. A spokesman at Health says 'yes it is'; that where there were three organisations involved before, now there are only two. Plus, Hunt's role as Secretary of State for Health and Social Care and the appointment of Caroline Dinenage as a minister of Health and Social Care, re-positions Social care at Ministerial level. On the other hand, according to Norman Lamb, ex Minister for Health, while funding still remains with Communities and Local Government, there is no real change at all. And funding is the crux of the matter; in the words of ADASS, "...more needs to be done now to secure extra recurring money to address funding gaps, address continuing service pressures and the stability of the care market".

Rachel Sylvester at the TIMES* says that the funding must follow the ministerial remit that it's absurd that it remains with councils. "If local authorities are funding social care they have a perverse incentive to transfer the cost to hospitals". And this debate doesn't consider the iniquitous situation where some conditions are funded and others are not (viz cancer v alzheimers) and where private funders are subsidising those paid for by the public purse. Hunt's new 'Social Care Parcel' appears to contain a ticking time bomb and needs to be handled with care! "..Mr Hunt is willing to be brave. The only question is whether the Prime Minister has the authority to back him up"

But with all that said... at C&SW we welcome the debate and are pleased to see the integration of Health and Social Care at a Ministerial level even in semantics! We are particularly pleased to see the role requested of Skills For Care in handling the Care Sector Workforce Consultation. We understand that a further consultation questionnaire , with more focus on care needs will be available from Skills for Care shortly. We would urge our members, indeed the whole local care community to respond in your droves to the consultation, and to continue to lobby politicians wherever possible. 

Sources: Care industry News: Guardian article; Local Government Association; Leonard Cheshire; *Times article: you will need to register to see the full article.

Care Awards 2018

Nominations open on 24th January and close on 16th April

Judging will take place in May and June.

Finalists will be notified by the end of June and will all qualify for a free place at the Awards Dinner on 20th October at the Lansdowne Stand, Bristol Football Stadium.

Nomination materials will be found here. (from 24th)

Success of Activities Fair for Dance Therapist

Juliet Binning is a dance therapist who attended the Activities Fair almost by accident! She is pleased she did as it lead to a contract with Ablecare for 2018!

Sam Hawker, director at Ablecare says: "our team who went to the event thought Juliet’s sessions would be good for our homes.  Juliet has done a trial in each of the 6 and as a result we have booked her up for the whole of next year!.

A large number of our residents really enjoy taking part in music and dance sessions.  We already have Music for Health coming in on a weekly basis and the new Dance Therapy sessions with Juliet give another opportunity in our programme to get up and active. 

Overall we have found interactive sessions have been really popular and so next year we will also be having regular Chair Yoga and Percussion Workshops.    We are also working with Making Pals and setting up links with local nurseries so that children will be coming in to visit.  It is a really exciting time for resident activities in our homes at the moment.  We are putting a big investment into them as we believe the results in health and wellbeing are clear to be seen."

Juliet says: "The sessions have been meet with enthusiasm by the residents. They really enjoy the tailored music, the 'football' warm up is especially a hit with the men! They have joined in the warm up and the dancing section of the session really well and with energy! They are definitely having a good workout on a Friday afternoon!
These are some of the comments I have received from my clients/the residents recently at the Ablecare homes, I was very touched,and just love my job!
' you make people smile'
' you bring people out of themselves'
' well I haven't kicked a football in 12 years!'
' I haven't heard this in years,I love this song!'

Several people who often 'don't respond' have been up and dancing to 'mack the knife' by the end of the session & I can hear them singing

It has been a pleasure getting to know the residents and having a chat,exercise and a dance.
The care staff have been great too, joining in and helping within the sessions.

I think the sessions benefit the clients hugely; socially, physically, cognitively, spiritually and emotionally, Dance Movement Therapy and Ablecare fit like a glove! I look forward to each session and what will 'come out' today!?!.. We've already had a 'chorus line'!! It was such fun!

The residents also inspire me and show me 'the moves'!

You can contact Juliet on jobinning1974@gmail.com

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Barbara Harris
Motivation and Recognition at Ablecare Homes

Ablecare have started a new initiative which aims to recognise contributions to the home and to wellbeing, made not by staff but by residents or visitors or volunteers.

Director Sam Hawker says: "A suggestion was made at our recent Managers’ Meeting to recognise the input of people other than paid staff into the running of the homes. As a result AbleCare Homes have created a Contribution of the Month Scheme.  Each month one individual will be honoured and will receive a certificate to thank them for their involvement. A copy of their certificate will be presented to them and posted on social media.

Suggestions for selecting AbleCare Homes Contribution of the Month:

  • Helping out around the home with duties such as setting tables, watering the plants etc. 
  • Joining in and helping to set up and lead activities for the enjoyment of residents. 
  • Cooperation, relationship with and support provided to residents.

The September Award was won by Roger, a resident at Crossley House in recognition of all the help he provides around the home

The October Award was won by Megan (below) who visited Hengrove Lodge every day during her half-term break, joining in activities and spending time with residents.  It really means a lot to everyone to have someone willing to spend time with them.

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Ablecare Focus on Community Integration and Involvement

Director Sam Hawker tells C&SW about the visit to Ablecare by the Mayor Lesley Alexander:

"It was a great pleasure to welcome Bristol Lord Mayor, Lesley Alexander, when she visited AbleCare Homes Patron House.

Lesley took time to chat to staff and residents and find out about life in the home. Everyone got involved, even our training provider who was assessing NVQ Candidates on the day. 

Sam Hawker, said ‘It was really special for the resident and staff team in the home to know that Lesley was interested in what they do.  It is another positive PR success for Social Care when those in public life are genuinely interested in discovering the difference good care can make to the lives of individuals in the city.’   

In case you were wondering about the post, The Lord Mayor is the first Citizen of the City and County of Bristol. There have been Mayors in Bristol since 1216 and a Lord Mayor since 1899, following Queen Victoria's decision to grant Bristol this privilege."

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In another initiative Hengrove Lodge has seen toddlers brightening the lives of residents. Children from the Hengrove branch of the Southern Links Childrens Centre visit the home. These visits have a real impact on the lives of people in the home says Lil Bowers from the Centre. Read the article in B24/7 here