Category: Caring Times


NICE issues draft guidance on hospital discharge into social care settings

Posted on May 11th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on NICE issues draft guidance on hospital discharge into social care settings

A draft social care has been issued by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) and is open for consultation until Tuesday, May 17th.

The guidance, ‘Transition between inpatient hospital settings and community or care home settings for adults with social care needs’, can be found at:

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/indevelopment/gid-qsd141/consultation/html-content-2


Dudley has already spent the 2% social care precept, says West Midlands Care Association

Posted on May 10th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Dudley has already spent the 2% social care precept, says West Midlands Care Association

Funds being raised by Dudley Council in the West Midlands to shore-up the costs of social care are being used to help balance the books on the previous year’s care overspend, according to the West Midlands care Association (WMCA).

Under Chancellor George Osborne’s plan to fund care sector needs, he sanctioned a 2% rise in council taxes during the Spending Review last November. But it emerged at an emergency members’ meeting of the WMCA, which represents private and charitable care providers, that the new monies will have no impact on the current industry crisis. Neither will there be any new monies generated for social care from Mr Osborne’s 2016 Budget proposals.

Hopes that the Chancellor would heed calls by the Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) to bring forward £700m of social care funding were not realised and the WMCA says more … Read More »


Care home managers unhappy with level of care given by the NHS to people with dementia

Posted on May 9th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Care home managers unhappy with level of care given by the NHS to people with dementia

An Alzheimer’s Society investigation has found that almost half of care home managers feel the NHS isn’t providing residents with dementia adequate and timely access to vital services like physiotherapy, continence and mental health services. This had led to instances where people have been left bed-bound, incontinent and sedated because the health service is too slow in responding to their needs.

The investigation, which is part of the ‘Fix Dementia Care’ campaign, involved a survey of more than 285 care home managers in England conducted jointly by the Alzheimer’s Society and Care England, as well as first-hand testimonies of carers of people with dementia living in care homes.

It also found that one in five care homes surveyed were being wrongly charged by GP practices for services that should be free on the NHS – up to as much as £36,000 a … Read More »


BBC’s ‘You and Yours’ warns of care home closures

Posted on May 5th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on BBC’s ‘You and Yours’ warns of care home closures

A report commissioned by BBC Radio 4’s ‘You and Yours’ programme suggests more than a quarter of care homes in the UK are in danger of going out of business within three years.

The report, compiled by business risk analysts Opus Business Services, said about 5,000 homes were at risk of closure because they carried too much debt and did not make enough profit to cover loan repayments

Opus business risk adviser Nick Hood said that, on average, care homes made £17,647 in profit before tax and that individual care homes were borrowing about 61% of the value of the business on average – a figure that amounted to £4bn across the industry. He said there were 20,000 care homes in the UK, operated by 5,871 individual owners who made, on average, about £60,000 annual profit as operators.

“It leaves a very small … Read More »


Jump in care home insolvencies

Posted on April 25th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Jump in care home insolvencies

The number of care home businesses falling into insolvency has jumped by 18%, with 47 care home operators in England and Wales becoming insolvent last year, up from 40 in the previous year, says accountancy firm Moore Stephens.

Research by the firm also shows that the number of care home businesses becoming insolvent has risen by 34% over three years, when there were 35 insolvencies in 2012/13.

Mike Finch, partner at Moore Stephens, said local authority spending on care homes continued to fall, with estimates suggesting that there would be a £2.9bn annual funding gap in social care by the end of the decade.

“The Government’s introduction of a mandatory national living wage from April 2016 is set to further increase pressure on the care homes sector as staff costs will rise,” said Mr Finch.

“Care homes have come under increasing financial strain and, … Read More »


Sector saddened by Annie Sinnott’s sudden passing

Posted on April 19th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Sector saddened by Annie Sinnott’s sudden passing

Annie Sinnott MBE, owner of the Old Vicarage care home in Leigh, Dorset and one of the care sector’s leading lights, sadly died after a very short illness on Sunday, April 17th.

Annie and her staff at the Old Vicarage have won many awards for the excellence of their care and not least for Annie’s long commitment to staff development and training. The Old Vicarage is one of the very few care homes to have been rated as Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission.

Annie’s passing is a sad loss to the care sector and everyone at Caring Times gives their sincere condolences to Annie’s husband Ian and their family.


‘So much for consultation’ say providers in the wake of CQC fee increase

Posted on April 8th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on ‘So much for consultation’ say providers in the wake of CQC fee increase

Care providers have expressed their displeasure at the Care Quality Commission’s recently announced fee increases. Speaking on behalf of nursing homes across the country, the Registered Nursing Home association (RNHA) has expressed its bitter disappointment that the Care Quality Commission is putting up the fees it charges them to be part of the regulated care market.

RNHA chief executive Frank Ursell said the CQC had run a consultation to ask whether it was preferred for a fee increase to be phase- in over two or four years – pain sooner rather than later or pain a bit more spread out.

“We opted for the latter,” said Mr Ursell. “Instead, the CQC has ignored what we said and imposed a hefty increase straight away. So much for consultation.

“To make matters worse, the increase we are having to absorb from the CQC is far … Read More »


CQC should consider camera surveillance as a regulatory tool, says Philip Scott

Posted on April 4th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on CQC should consider camera surveillance as a regulatory tool, says Philip Scott

By using camera technology to monitor care practices in care homes, the Care Quality Commission could continue to do its job effectively while remaining within tightening budget constraints, according to Philip Scott, the managing director of Care Protect, a company which operates a commercial camera surveillance system designed for use in care homes.

In response to reductions in its budget from £249m this financial year to £217m in 2019/20 the CQC has said it plans to inspect adult social care services less often and concentrate on those perceived to be at greatest risk, using quantitative and qualitative information held on providers to spot potential risks more effectively.

Mr Scott says camera surveillance technology should be used by the CQC to trigger an inspection as opposed to visiting a home or hospital simply because it is time to do so. If technology was … Read More »


Social care leader slams ‘institutional prejudice’

Posted on March 31st, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Social care leader slams ‘institutional prejudice’

Care Forum Wales chair Mario Kreft has hit out against what he calls the ‘institutional prejudice’ towards private companies providing services for vulnerable people.

Speaking at a meeting of the Five Nations group, which represents social care providers from the four home countries and Eire, Mr Kreft said outdated attitudes were blighting the sector at a time when the need for collaboration and partnership had never been greater.

“Unfortunately, there is a significant degree of unfair institutional prejudice against the independent sector here in Wales and elsewhere in the UK and Ireland,” said Mr Kreft.

“There are still many people who appear to resent the fact that independent providers need to be financially viable to stay in business and provide high quality services. I was talking to a nurse recently who left the NHS and joined a very reputable private sector organisation and … Read More »


Care homes use online nutrition service in Northern Ireland

Posted on March 29th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Care homes use online nutrition service in Northern Ireland

A health and social care trust in Northern Ireland has commissioned a digital nutrition monitoring and advice service now being used by 14 care homes in the province.

The service, Health Call, has been commissioned by the Southern Health and Social Care Trust in Northern Ireland is said to allow a closer collaboration across the NHS and care homes through a secure web-based portal. Undernourished residents are closely monitored every one to two weeks by care home staff, who input the patient’s weight, appetite, and compliance to oral nutritional supplements (ONS) onto an online portal.

If any of the patient’s data falls outside of their pre-set personal parameters, a member of the dietetic team is alerted and will contact the care home to provide dietary advice. Previously the dietitian visited every patient every six weeks.

“The automated system offers great support to the … Read More »



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