Extra cash boosts Warwickshire’s Covid-19 response for care homes

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Warwickshire County Council's Shire Hall headquarters in Warwick.

THE support Warwickshire County Council can offer care homes, and other community support providers to implement effective measures to curb the spread of Covid-19 has been boosted by more than £7million of national funding.

Two allocations of £3.6m from central Government’s Adult Social Care Infection Control Fund, in June and again in July, took Warwickshire’s share of the £600m national fund to £7.2m.

The money is allocated on a per bed basis to 171 care homes in Warwickshire with around a quarter of the funding used to support wider workforce resilience and infection control in the care sector.

The council is working closely with health partners and care home providers, including those with whom the council does not have a contract, to ensure infection control measures are in place with funding only passed on if certain requirements are met.

These include participation in training and a commitment to regular testing of staff and residents.

The close collaboration is built around effective information exchange between the council and care providers.

The government funding is being used for a range of infection control measures such as paying for extra staff cover to provide the necessary level of care and support to residents, building modifications to enable segregation, provision of PPE and decontamination and deep cleaning when required.

It also supports measures implemented at the onset of the pandemic by health and social care services.

As the rate of Covid-19 infection has decreased, restrictions placed on care home visits have been lifted and people can now see loved ones at many homes around the county. Allowing people to visit their family and friends is beneficial to the well-being of all involved but the move does involve increased risk of new infections.

To combat this, the council has applied public health advice to work with homes to introduce stringent safety measures. The council has produced simple visual guidance for each home to display and share with visitors which makes it easier to understand and follow this important guidance.

Cllr Les Caborn, Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care at Warwickshire County Council said: “Warwickshire is doing great work in partnership with this sector to keep some of our most vulnerable residents as safe as possible at this time.”

“This additional round of funding will bolster the system further by providing extra workforce resilience and enabling homes to take appropriate measures to control spread of the virus and safely admit visitors.”

“The positive feedback from providers, partners and regulators about how well the care system has worked together and the high level of support they have received gives me confidence that we are doing all the right things to minimise risk to people’s health.”

For more information visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/coronavirus.