DHSC has updated the public on some of the work that has been undertaken to date by the recently established Social Care Sector COVID-19 Support Taskforce.
The Taskforce, chaired by David Pearson former president of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), was set up to prevent further transmission in the care sector. It is working with care services, local authorities and partners to deliver the Government’s Social Care Action Plan and Care Home Support Package. As such, it is overseeing delivery of infection control measures, delivery of testing programmes and management of the workforce.
Since being established, the Taskforce has undertaken a number of activities which include:
- Writing to providers and local Authorities on 3 July highlighting the importance of care staff only working in one setting at any one time. The letter reiterated that local authorities and providers should make use of the £600 million Infection Control Fund to pay staff their full wages to remain in one setting, ensuring staff do not suffer any loss of income due to limited movement, as well as to support people to stay off work, if advised to do so through the NHS Test & Trace programme.
- Supporting the social care response in Leicester and other areas with higher rates of infection.
- Meeting for the second time on 2 July to discuss a range of issues, including the extension of care sector testing introduced on 6 July whereby all staff and residents in care homes for over 65s and those with dementia now receive regular coronavirus tests.
Also, four secondees from provider organisations have been appointed to provide additional advice and support to the Taskforce. They are:
- Angela Murphy, Director of Community Services, Jewish Care
- Christine Asbury, Chief Executive Officer, WCS Care
- Lynn James, Managing Director, Care Bridge and Director, TFS Ltd
- Ian Turner, Executive Chair, Registered Nursing Home Association and Director, The Partnership in Care Ltd.