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  • Most England care providers show 'good practice' on infection control

    Most England care providers show 'good practice' on infection control

    20.10.20 In an update on its new infection and prevention control (IPC) inspections, which are being rolled out across England, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) suggested that most care homes are taking effective precautions against coronavirus risks. “Most care providers that we have inspected have demonstrated good practice which we will continue to highlight through regular publications,” said adult social care chief inspector Kate Terroni. “However, where we have concerns, we can and will take swift action.” Terroni added that care homes would need to take a case-by-case approach to visits from residents’ relatives. “We do expect care homes to discuss visitation as part of individual care plans including considering whether residents have exceptional circumstances to consider in those plans, and we will look for these on inspection,” she commented.

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  • E-Newsletter 16 Oct 2020

    E-Newsletter 16 Oct 2020

    Here is this week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment.

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  • Government caves into pressure to treat relatives as keyworkers

    Government caves into pressure to treat relatives as keyworkers

    19.10.20 After months of pressure the government appears to have caved into calls for designated family members to be treated as keyworkers when visiting care home residents. Care minister Helen Whately told MPs on the Commons Health and Social Care Committee that the government would set up a pilot scheme to see whether family members can be treated as keyworkers, with PPE and regular tests to ensure they are Covid-free. But there was no indication of a firm timescale when Whately was questioned by the committee: “I am planning for us to launch a pilot on that shortly,” she said. “I can’t give you a date, but what I can say is we’re moving forward with it and we are going to pilot it. Visiting is incredibly important for residents and their families and care homes. I really want us to enable visiting but it must be safe.” Alzheimer’s Society, which has been campaigning on the issue with other charities, welcomed the move but wanted a clear plan.

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  • E-Newsletter - 9 Oct 2020

    E-Newsletter - 9 Oct 2020

    Here is this week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include key lessons learned during the pandemic by care home and NHS staff, an online event to share ideas for keeping music going in residential care, and London judged to have the highest level of "dementia innovation readiness" among cities worldwide. It is an editor's selection which we hope you will enjoy.

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  • Playlist for Life adapts Musical Tea campaign

    Playlist for Life adapts Musical Tea campaign

    16.10.20 Musical charity Playlist for Life has launched a fundraising campaign to raise awareness of the power of music for people with dementia. It has changed the format of its usual Musical Tea campaign, by encouraging care homes to host fun music activities for residents, and members of the public to organise their own socially distanced, family or online events. The Musical Tea campaign, postponed from April, first ran last year with more than 100 organisations from across the dementia field. Michelle Armstrong, Playlist for Life interim executive director, said: “People living with dementia, their families and carers are among those who have been hit hardest by the pandemic. Taking part can be as simple as giving your gran a call and chatting about music and memories. It’s all about connecting with each other whilst raising awareness of the power music can have for someone living with dementia."

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  • Training programme develops online

    Training programme develops online

    15.10.20 A study to adapt a successful training programme on person-centred care for a Covid-19 world has won £1.2 million in government funding. Led by Exeter University and King’s College London, the study will develop online training drawing on the most successful elements of the WHELD programme, which has had demonstrable success in supporting care home staff to provide more person-centred care for people with dementia. “We urgently need to support care staff, who are going through an extraordinarily difficult time in trying to care for people with dementia and other residents in hugely challenging circumstances,” said Professor Clive Ballard from Exeter University Medical School. “Care home residents are among the frailest in society and are at particularly high risk of dying from Covid-19. I’m delighted that this funding will help us to adapt the programme to a Covid-19 world, and roll it out swiftly, to provide the best possible support to residents and staff.”

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  • Online event shares ideas for music in care homes

    Online event shares ideas for music in care homes

    14.10.20 Sharing simple ideas and best practice for keeping music going in residential care is the purpose of a new initiative from the charity Music for Dementia. Its Musical Care Taskforce is inviting care home staff to be part of an online gathering on Tuesday 20 October (2pm - 3.30pm), which is also an opportunity to find out about the needs of the sector and the way music can respond to those. According to Music for Dementia, music is more important than ever in facing and recovering from isolation and the challenges of the pandemic. Register click here

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  • Invitation to take part in KCL research on residential respite

    Invitation to take part in KCL research on residential respite

    13.10.12 Researchers involved in the “Taking a Break” study at King’s College London are looking for people with dementia and carers to share their views on short stays in care homes, often known as “residential respite”. They want to hear about people’s experiences, including what they think of short stays during the Covid-19 pandemic, and hope to cast light on what people get out of their short stay and why some others do not arrange one in the first place. The researchers are also keen to promote the study among black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) groups and would like to hear of organisations and individuals to approach. Contact laura.cole@kcl.ac.uk.

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  • Family dementia care takes toll on working lives

    Family dementia care takes toll on working lives

    12.10.20 Nearly a third (31%) of family carers of people with dementia have to cut their working hours to take care of loved ones, while 34% of them provide care alone without any support. The survey commissioned by Bupa Care Homes and carried out by One Poll involved 375 adults with dementia who were being cared for by relatives. According to the International Business Times, a fifth of the carers had “sacrificed” their professional lives. Most of the carers (83%) welcomed any additional support, while 77% firmly believed that the person cared for would still be able to lead a fulfilling life with the right kind of support.

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  • Study of care homes sets out lessons learned from Covid-19

    Study of care homes sets out lessons learned from Covid-19

    10.10.20 Key lessons learned during the pandemic by care home and NHS staff are presented in a new report from the National Care Forum and Leeds University. The research into the experiences of staff in the first few months of the crisis heard reports of an unpredictable illness trajectory, atypical symptoms among older people, and the absence of a “magic bullet” for managing symptoms and providing supportive care. Entitled “LESS COVID: Learning by Experience and Supporting the Care Home Sector during the Covid-19 pandemic,” the report is described as “essential reading” for all those involved in providing care for older people. Report here

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