Categories
Community Health Social Security

More Help With Free Personal and Nursing Care

Savings for people with dementia and other care needs.

Adults who pay for their residential care in Scotland will be better off from April as a result of a change to the rates of allowances they receive for personal and nursing care.

Those who ‘self-fund’ their residential care receive an allowance in recognition of their personal and nursing care costs.

Regulations laid in Parliament will raise these allowances by 7.5 per cent, well above the normal annual increase, in recognition of the increasing cost of providing care, particularly for people with dementia.

The change is backed by an additional £10.1m in Local Authority funding to cover the increases.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said:

“I am pleased to confirm that we will increase the allowances paid to people who are paying self-funder rates for their residential care by 7.5%.

“Care home costs have been rising above inflation for a number of years and this is an important step towards to bringing the rates closer to the actual cost of personal and nursing care.

“The Independent Review of Adult Social Care will be published later this week and in responding to its recommendations there will be opportunities to consider wider reforms to the way residential care is funded and delivered, to ensure the highest standards of care and wellbeing for people who use adult social care, and support for their families, carers and the workforce.”

Background

The Scottish Government has legislated to ensure that adults of any age, no matter their condition, capital or income, who are assessed by their local authority as needing personal care, are entitled to receive this without charge.

Free nursing care is similar and has been available to all who are assessed as requiring nursing care services, without charge.

People resident in care homes who have capital above the higher Capital Limit (currently £28,500) are known as self-funders. Local Authorities make payments to cover the personal care (currently at £180 per week) and nursing care (currently at £81 per week) part of self-funder care home fees. These are paid directly to the residential care provider on a weekly basis.

Under the normal inflationary measure used to calculate allowances, these payments would have increased by 1.94% this year. This year’s increases are shown in the table below.

Year Personal Care Nursing Care Annual Increase

1 April 2019 £177 £80 1.57%

1 April 2020 £180 £81 1.84%

1 April 2021 £193.50 £87.10 7.5%

Categories
Coronavirus Health Public Health

Supporting Those Who Receive And Provide Social Care

New measures and £112 million investment will support sector over winter.

A plan outlining steps to prepare and support Scotland’s social care sector through the winter has been published.

The Adult Social Care Winter Preparedness Plan, backed by an additional £112 million in funding, will support social care users in residential, community and home settings, and the people who provide that care, including unpaid carers.

This new plan and additional investment will provide further support to the sector to respond the demands of winter alongside the ongoing challenges of coronavirus (COVID-19). Earlier this year the sector received an additional £150 million to deal with the financial implications of the pandemic, bringing this year’s total extra allocation for social care to £262 million.

An evidence paper has been published with the plan outlining how the new measures have been informed by lessons learned about COVID-19 to date, including last week’s Public Health Scotland discharge report and the Care Inspectorate’s Care at Home inquiry. The plan also takes into account the findings of the root cause analysis of care home outbreaks commissioned by the Cabinet Secretary, which is also published today.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said:

“The coronavirus pandemic presents unprecedented challenges for everyone this winter, particularly those who are already vulnerable. One in 20 people in Scotland are recipients of adult social care and their needs are diverse. We have made this central to our approach, ensuring we support and protect people while prioritising their mental health and well-being.

“This is the first time we have published an adult social care plan. It has been produced with input from across all partners and I’m pleased to say that it has the support of our colleagues at COSLA. It sets out what support will be available for people who receive social care and those who provide that care this winter, as well as addressing the impacts COVID-19 has had on them and their families.

“The new measures we are putting in place have been informed by the lessons we have learned so far, and the evidence paper published today outlines why these measures are necessary for winter. We will continue to take firm action to protect those who receive or provide social care, and adapt our guidance based on the latest scientific evidence and clinical advice.”

Councillor Stuart Currie, COSLA’s Health and Social Care Spokesperson, said:

“The social care sector and Scotland’s social care workers have faced enormous challenges during the COVID-19 response, and the Adult Social Care Plan will enable them to continue to provide valuable help and support to those in the community that need it most.

“The pandemic has had a drastic impact on those that require support both at home and in residential settings, and the funding announced by the Scottish Government as part of the plan will go some way to addressing that.

“COSLA will continue to work with Scottish Government and partners across the sector to ensure that they receive the support they need to continue this vital work.”

Actions outlined in the plan include:

  • Enhanced infection prevention and control, with £7 million for Health Boards to invest in Nurse Director teams
  • Daily review of COVID-19 symptoms in care home residents and staff, including temperature checking so early testing can be undertaken and pre-emptive infection control measures put in place
  • Expanded testing access for the care at home workforce and designated visitors as capacity increases
  • NHS National Services Scotland will continue to provide free of charge top-up and emergency provision of PPE to ensure staff, unpaid carers, and Social Care Personal Assistants have the PPE they need until at least the end of March 2021
  • Prioritise a ‘home first’ approach to care, supporting people to stay home or in a homely setting with maximum independence for as long as possible
  • up to £500,000 will be available to all care homes to provide access to digital devices, connectivity and support to help manage conditions from home or connect those receiving care with their loved ones
  • £50 million to support the additional costs of restricting staff movement across care settings
  • £50 million for the Social Care Staff Support Fund and winter sustainability funding, through to the end of March 2021
  • Maintaining and promoting access to local NHS Board workforce wellbeing services, the health and social care wellbeing national hub PROMIS and the NHS 24 mental health support service to support care home staff, the third sector and unpaid carers
  • up to £5 million for additional oversight and administration costs associated with responding to the pandemic and outbreak management
  • Publication of a website with information and advice for families on visiting.


Background

Adult Social Care Winter Preparedness Plan 2020-21 and Evidence Paper

Coronavirus (COVID-19): care home outbreaks – root cause analysis

Public Health Scotland report – Discharges from NHSScotland Hospitals to Care Homes between 1 March and 31 May 2020

Care Inspectorate inquiry – Delivering care at home and housing support services during the COVID-19 pandemic

An  independent review of adult social care announced in the 2020-21 Programme for Government is currently underway. Chaired by Derek Feeley, it will report in January 2021 to recommend improvements to adult social care in Scotland, primarily in terms of the outcomes achieved by and with people who use services, their carers’ and families, and the experience of people who work in adult social care.

Categories
Coronavirus Health

Further £50 million for social care sector

Funding to help meet COVID-19 related costs.

The social care sector will receive up to £50 million further additional funding to help meet additional costs related to coronavirus (COVID-19), Health Secretary Jeane Freeman has announced.

Following an agreement between the Scottish Government and COSLA, the funding will be allocated to Integration Joint Boards (IJB) across Scotland to ensure the sustainability of the social care sector throughout the ongoing pandemic.

The additional resource comes on top of the £50 million previously allocated to the social care sector in May for COVID-19 related costs.

Scotland’s 31 health and social care partnerships have all put in place mobilisation plans and any additional expenditure will be expected to align with these plans. The funding will support social care providers with COVID-19-related costs such as a reduction in occupancy due to the virus, additional staffing or sickness costs, infection prevention and control and PPE.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said:

“Since the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic the social care sector has played a crucial and critical role in Scotland’s response. I know that it has been hugely challenging for social care staff and providers to deal with what is an unprecedented situation and all social care and healthcare staff working on the frontline have my sincere thanks.

“This second tranche of funding will bring our total extra allocation to the social care sector since May to £100 million, a sign of our practical commitment to continuing to support the sustainability and resilience of the sector.

“I am very clear that we will meet any increasing need for social care as a result of the pandemic and we will continue to work closely with COSLA and NHS Boards to ensure they have the resources required.”

COSLA’s Health and Social Care spokesperson Councillor Stuart Currie said:

“COSLA welcomes the announcement from Scottish Government in relation to a further allocation of funding to enable Health and Social Care Partnerships to continue to support the social care sector in their pivotal role responding to COVID 19.

“COSLA will continue to work closely with Scottish Government to ensure that resources are released to enable Partnerships to meet all reasonable costs identified within Local Mobilisation Plans to address the challenges currently being faced by the sector.”

Background

This announcement will extend the principles for social care sustainability payments to social care providers until the end of September, and will continue to support local authorities, IJBs and social care providers with financial challenges relating to COVID-19.

The Social Care Staff Support Fund is a separate commitment. It continues to remain in place until the end of September to ensure social care workers do not suffer financial hardship if they are ill or self-isolating as a result of coronavirus. Employers should pay eligible staff their expected income and reclaim any additional costs from Integration or Local Authorities. Guidance on eligibility and administration is available on the Scottish Government website.