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This page shows the latest news and developments relating to social care providers within the Vale of York area. For the latest training and development news and events please follow this link, and to view the full back catalogue of the Partners in Care Weekly Bulletin please follow this link.

23 November 2020- CCG IPC Training Resources

The Health Education England presentations and resources used as part of the CCG IPC training delivered by care providers are now available on our website to refer to as required. To access the resources please follow this link, then navigate to ‘Essential Learning’ and you will see a folder called: Covid 19 Training for Care Homes - presentations (from the Royal National Orthopedic Hospital) which contains the resources.

If you have a need of further virtual or face to face IPC training or have any queries please contact

23 November 2020- Capacity Tracker- Updating Guidance

Following recent additions and changes to the questions care homes are being asked to report on through the Capacity Tracker,  below is the frequency that the different sections need to be completed.

  • Vacancies and Business Continuity (Including COVID cases, workforce, PPE and flu vaccinations)- Daily
  • IPC Questions- Majority of these are required to be completed weekly, but a small number are only required to be completed monthly.

This data is used by the CCG and local authorities to help support providers, so if you could ensure all sections are completed that would be a great help.  Flu vaccination and IPC fields are the most common fields that haven’t been completed, so please check those next time you update the tracker.

Domiciliary and supported living providers will also be asked to report in through the capacity tracker going forward. Guidance on how to register will be circulated to those providers once timescales are confirmed, no action is required at present.

20 November 2020- NHS Deep Cleaning Support and Advisory Service

Please find through this link a flyer from the NHS Deep leaning and Advisory Service. These services are available to the wider community and may be suitable in facilitating additional support where deep cleaning is required . In the last 4 months, they have delivered proactive and reactive deep cleaning and bio decontamination services, training in NHS standard cleaning protocols and advisory service to a number of services. They can deliver one-off or a bespoke programme of proactive deep cleaning.  Depending on requirements, they would usually begin by conducting a site visit to assess the work involved in carrying out the clean.  In the event of a Covid positive case (or a virus outbreak of any other nature), they can provide a rapid response deep clean and bio decontamination service to assist in making premises safe to enter again. More information on the service is also available through their website 

16 November 2020- Yorkshire Ambulance Service- Supporting Information for Care Providers

Following the session delivered by Sam Pinder and Natalie Howson and Partners in Care Virtual Forum last week, the slides are now available through this link on the Partners in Care webpages.

These slides are designed as a resourced for care provider staff of all levels, including as training for new starters. They are a useful guide for what to expect when calling 999, 111 and PTS services (including around waiting times, who will take your call, what to mention and what paperwork to have ready) as well when to call each of these.

In order to help get an idea about how much the care homes know about 111/999, YAS are inviting care homes to fill out this survey. If you have any feedback about the session or these resources please contact

16 November 2020- Making Sense of COVID Test Results and Re-Testing

We are recirculating this useful guidance that was written by Dr Andrew Lee in partnership with City of York Council and Public Health England in May, which gives guidance for providers on interpreting test results early in an infection, as well as later on into an infection.

If the resident had symptoms that started more than 14 days ago and they have not had a fever for 48 hours without medication, they can safely be assumed not to be infectious. They no longer need isolation and can be safely admitted to a care home. There is no need to re-test them for COVID19.  If they have symptoms that started more than 14 days ago and still have a fever, get medical advice.

Be aware that for some people who have recovered from an infection, they may have a cough that lasts for many weeks afterwards. This is a side-effect of the infection. But they are not infectious and do not need to be isolated.

16 November 2020- Personal Assistant Support Flyer

As part of its offer of support to care providers and professionals across the Vale of York, the CCG has produced a flyer detailing support opportunities for personal assistants. We will be circulating to personal assistants funded by the CCG, but please share with any personal assistants you may work with.

16 November 2020- Performing CPR With Symptomatic Individuals

The Department for Health and Social Care has published guidance for performing CPR on individuals with confirmed or symptomatic COVID-19. This was written for first responders but will also be relevant to care providers.

16 November 2020- IT and Technology in Care Home’s Survey

Please find through this link to a questionnaire which homes across the Vale of York CCG and North Yorkshire CCG are being encouraged to complete. We appreciate that you are extremely busy, but the purpose of this questionnaire is to capture information about IT and technology in registered care homes so that the CCG is able to access funding and support to help with IT systems and training where it is most needed. In the medium term this will hopefully make your jobs easier, and help to provide more joined-up care for your residents.

We appreciate there are a lot of questions, so feel free to complete a bit at a time. This can be completed by anybody within the home or head office on behalf of the home as appropriate. If you don’t know the answer to a question, it’s fine to provide a ‘best guess’. If there are any issues with the questionnaire please email:

The deadline for this questionnaire is 30 November 2020

16 November 2020- NHS Mail Update

NHS Digital have confirmed that individual NHS Mail accounts that have been unaccessed for 180 days will now NOT be deleted in mid-November. The CCG will also be able to request passwords resets on behalf of providers again shortly, so will be in contact with providers have struggled to access their accounts to assist.

16 November 2020- Free Virtual Theatre Performance

London’s  Old Vic Theatre are offering free tickets to all care homes for a live streamed  performances of  A Christmas Carol  during 12-24 December.  For more information and booking please follow this link 

09 November- Flu Vaccinations for Care Home Staff

We are aware of the challenges you have faced obtaining a flu vaccination for your staff. We fully recognise how important it is to keep your staff well and to protect your residents from flu.

For any members of staff who are registered with one of the York City GP Practices (including Pocklington Group Practice, practices detailed below), we have agreed that staff can book with immediate effect a vaccine through the Drive through at Askham Bar.  

  • Dalton Terrace Surgery
  • Front Street Surgery
  • York Medical Group
  • Priory Medical Group
  • Haxby Group Practice
  • Jorvik Gillygate Practice
  • MyHealth
  • Unity Health
  • Old School Medical Practice
  • Elvington Medical Practice
  • Pocklington Group Practice

Please ask staff individually complete the form and booking on the following the link that has been circulated to homes. They will need to know their own GP, their NHS number and car reg. As always to avoid the risk of covid transmission – Do not car share unless absolutely necessary – then use face masks, and passenger sit at the rear

Nimbuscare federation is providing this service on behalf of the city practices. This means unfortunately it is not available for staff registered outside of these practices.

For staff registered with other GP Practices, please be patient, we have communicated with all GP Practices to ensure you are able to book a vaccine with them. Please contact your practice direct. Community pharmacies are now also able to reorder supplies, so may be able to take bookings shortly.

In all circumstances your vaccine should be free and no provider whether it is a community pharmacy or GP practice should be requesting payment.

09 November 2020- Your NHS Needs You- COVID Vaccine Research Trial

NHS researchers in Leeds, Harrogate and York are working together to help find a vaccine for COVID-19. We are recruiting now for the next stage of clinical trials to help find a vaccine. Together with the National Institute for Health Research, we have put together an animation to explain the process of vaccine research. 

To better understand the effectiveness of vaccine candidates and help find a vaccine that works for as many people as soon as possible, researchers are particularly seeking more volunteers from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds as well as those with underlying health conditions and the over 65s.

Please share this information with your friends and colleagues. To sign up visit please visit this website- 

09 November 2020- Medical Devices Safety Bulletin- T34 Syringe Drivers

Please find through this link a pilot bulletin that the MHRA have put together with the latest updates regarding T34 Syringe Drivers. This includes an update on previous that had previously be put in place on sales of pumps, as well as an update on battery issues that have been experienced.

09 November 2020- Swabbing and Donning/Doffing Competency Videos

The Department of Health and Social Care have produced two useful instructional videos which demonstrate correct swabbing and donning/doffing technique which may be useful to care providers.

09 November 2020- Capacity Tracker- Updated IPC Questions

A review has taken place on questions on the tracker which are required to be updated to access the IPC fund. This review has meant that some existing questions have been removed, some have been re-worded and some new questions have also been added. These are expected to be live on the tracker from Monday 9 November

The new questions cover the following areas:

  • Limiting the use of public transport by members of staff
  • Staff choosing to stay separately from their families
  • Residents receiving visitors
  • Regular weekly testing of staff for COVID-19

The majority of the questions form part of a weekly submission for Care Homes and Hospice Providers with a number requiring an update on a monthly basis only.  All providers are required  to review and update responses to the questions each week/month and to confirm this has been done. Thank you for everyone’s really hard work so far in submitting their information via Capacity Tracker, rest assured all the information you provide is reviewed daily and used to support collective planning across the health and social care sector both locally and nationally to swiftly resolve issues wherever possible, whether through local or national actions

02 November 2020- Why Hypothermia is a Bad Sign in Infections

Often, a systemic infection like sepsis will cause a patient to develop a high fever as part of the body’s immune system response. In some cases, though, a patient will develop hypothermia, or low body temperature instead.

When an individual develops hypothermia during sepsis, there is an increased risk of fatality than when a patient develops a fever. The reason body temperature can change is the body normally “resets” itself at a higher preferred temperature and begins to expend energy keeping the body warmer as a means of fighting infection. When this does not happen or when the body resets at a colder temperature, the body is at a disadvantage because decreased blood flow and circulation already occurs with blood vessel dilation with sepsis, and cold temperature further decreases this blood flow.

Although further research is needed, hypothermia during sepsis can be indicative of larger immune system problems and an ominous course.

Health Education England have produced a resource on Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (SIRS) (of which sepsis is one such cause) – where hypothermia is one of the recognized features to look out for (in addition to tachycardia, tachypnoea or low blood pressure.

02 November 2020- Stop the Pressure Day: Thursday 19 Nov 2020

Be a pressure hero this STOP THE PRESSURE DAY by doing something, anything  within your service that will raise awareness of the dangers of pressure damage; and how to prevent or stop it in its tracks!

Send us your photos of what you have done so we can show case your fantastic work

Certificates for everyone taking part!

The Tissue Viability Society are offering free grab bags of resources to care providers to help promote the campaign. For further information and to share any plans for Stop the Pressure Day, please contact

02 November 2020- Congratulations William Wilberforce

A big congratulations to the team at William Wilberforce Care Home in Pocklington who are pictured with their certificate for completing the Recognising and Responding to Deterioration training (Stop and Watch). The training is designed to develop care staff skills and knowledge in recognising deterioration  and how to respond to change. Training also includes communication skills and how to use the SBAR (situation, background, assessment and recommendations) tool to help care staff  relay accurate, relevant and timely information to other health and care services including GPs and District Nurses.

For more information on this training please follow this link or contact

02 November 2020- NHS Mail- Resources and Guidance

Following on from the session delivered by Liz Howarth from NHS England/Improvement to providers last week, please find the below resources available through this link to help embed NHS Mail in your provider. A reminder that inactive individual accounts are being deleted in mid-November, the Partners in Care Team are contacting providers with accounts in this category to assist them in accessing these accounts.

  • NHS Mail and DSPT Presentation
  • Weekly NHS Mail Webinar Flyer
  • NHS Mail User Guide
  • NHS Mail Frequently Asked Questions
  • DSPT Registration Guide
  • DSPT Entry Level Guide

 For any queries relating to NHS Mail or DSPT please contact

30 October 2020- Continence Support and Training for Nursing Homes

Please find through this link a flyer from the provider of continence products for nursing patients in the Vale of York. They are able to support homes with continence education, correct use of products, profiling and product selection with your nursing care home staff . This training and support can be available virtually and there is also Virtual an abundance of support literature.

26 October 2020- Nutritional Wellbeing Virtual Training

In response to the national call to help support Care/Nursing Homes, the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics at York Hospital has developed a comprehensive virtual training package designed to support staff in the identification and management of malnutrition to help promote residents’ nutritional wellbeing.

Since rolling out the programme on 1 October 2020, training has already been delivered to three Care/Nursing Homes. Training is available to any Care/Nursing Home in the Vale of York CCG. Expressions of interest should be emailed to: Nutrition&

Did you know that Care/Nursing Homes within the Vale of York CCG can refer residents directly to the outpatient dietetic service at York Hospital, without obtaining a referral from their GP? The referral form can be accessed from the York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust website. Completed referral forms should be emailed from an email address to:

26 October 2020- Updated Guidance

26 October 2020- Conversations about COVID

Yorkshire Humber Clinical Network have a series of “Conversations about COVID” Planned. These are intended to be informal and interactive so that staff and paid carers across Y&H have the chance to join to share their experiences of supporting people affected by dementia and frailty during COVID. You’re welcome to talk about challenges, share successes or just come and listen and provide and receive some peer support. We are now having a ‘theme’ for each session and we do have some gaps, if you have any suggestions please do get in touch.

For information and dates of sessions please access this flyer.

20 October 2020- Best Practice Guidance Examples and Resources

Please find below a selection of resources shared with us by North Yorkshire County Council which may be useful for your service. The 5 moments for hand hygiene and visiting instructions documents have been updated:

12 October 2020- Capacity Tracker- New Questions

Care homes registered with the capacity tracker will have received an update around new questions that will be launched on the tracker on Wednesday 14 October. The 3 questions added are as below, and are designed to help understand any issues providers may be having around these topics on a national and local level.

  • How many staff and residents are known to have had a flu vaccination
  • Where there may be issues accessing flu vaccinations
  • The COVID19 status of residents received from NHS Trust hospitals.

If you have any queries regarding the capacity tracker please contact

12 October 2020- The Courage of Compassion-  Supporting Nurses and Midwives to Deliver High-Quality Care


The Kings Fund have published a report aim to showing how to transform nurses’ and midwives’ workplaces so that they can thrive and flourish and are better able to provide the compassionate, high-quality care that they and those they serve wish them to deliver. The report examines the workplace stressors, organisational cultures, working contexts and leadership styles that impact on nurse and midwife wellbeing and mental health, both before and during Covid-19. It sets out how these can be changed to provide dramatically improved working environments and contexts for nursing and midwifery practice, thereby benefiting nurses, midwives, patients, women, families and communities.

The report’s scope covers all areas of practice and all care settings where nursing and midwifery staff operate, including primary care, secondary care, mental health, community care and social care. To read the summary version of this report please follow this link, and for the full version please follow this link.

05 October 2020- Flu Vaccination for Health and Social Care Workers

Having the flu vaccination every year is important, but this year it is vital to make sure we do all we can to support and protect the NHS and care services due to the potential impact of flu and COVID-19 circulating at the same time.

Flu can be deadly and is easily spread from person-to-person, even amongst those not showing any symptoms. Unvaccinated and asymptomatic, but nevertheless infected, staff may unknowingly pass the virus on to vulnerable residents, friends, family and colleagues.

Flu outbreaks can have a serious effect on the social care sector. Every year there are flu outbreaks in care homes despite high flu vaccination rates for residents. This is partly because as people age, they do not produce as good an immune response to vaccinations. The vaccination against flu protects the people we care for and protects staff, their family and friends, helping to keep services running safely during winter.

How can I support staff flu vaccinations?

If you are a manager, Public Health England produces resources specifically for those working in the social care sector and you can access these here.

Please help the fight against the flu virus this year by encouraging your team and colleagues to book their flu vaccination.

If you're a frontline health and social care worker, your employer should offer you a flu vaccine. They may give the vaccine at your workplace. Ask your employer how they will be offering staff the flu vaccine this year.

You can also have the flu vaccine if you provide health or social care through direct payments or personal health budgets, or both. The NHS website has more information.

Thank you to all our social care workers for your hard work and commitment during these profoundly challenging times, and we thank you in advance for your support by getting your flu vaccine this year!

05 October 2020- PPE Portal: How to order COVID-19 PPE and Ordering Changes

Eligible health and social care providers can order PPE through the portal to meet the increased need that has arisen as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This updated guidance gives information regarding the increased order limit information for all sectors to reflect recent increases and has removed order information on type II masks.

The order limits for different types and sizes of eligible health and social care providers are listed within the guidance these are kept under review to make sure they reflect the latest public health guidance, COVID-19 demand modelling and analysis.

The PPE portal can be used by social care and primary care providers to get critical coronavirus (COVID-19) personal protective equipment (PPE).You can only log in and place an order if you’ve received an email invitation to register. The PPE portal can be used by:

  •  GPs
  • residential social care providers
  • domiciliary social care providers

If you’re a provider in one of these categories, your invitation to register will be sent to your email account registered with Care Quality Commission (CQC), NHS Business Services Authority (BSA), NHS England or the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

 PPE ordered from the portal is free of charge and will be delivered by Royal Mail within 4 days.

 Eligible health and social care providers can use the portal to meet the extra need for PPE that has arisen as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic. You should not use the portal to order PPE for non-COVID-19 requirements. You should get this through your normal channels.

 Eligible providers can now use the portal to order PPE for COVID-19 requirements, rather than as an emergency top-up system. There have also been some other updates including:

  • domiciliary care providers with 50 or more clients and residential care homes with over 50 or more beds can now order one box of visors (usually 200 per box) per week
  • added type II masks to the list of items that can be ordered 
  • updated order limits for GPs and social care providers.

05 October 2020- PRINCIPLE Study

Individuals who have been diagnosed with or who are showing symptoms of COVID-19 and are aged 65 or over (or 50-64 with certain conditions) are able to self-enrol into the PRINCIPLE study. This is a national trial to find treatments that reduce hospital admissions and improve symptoms. To join the study, please follow this link.

 For further information, the poster and patient information leaflet can be found through these links.

05 October 20: Text Message Wellbeing Support Pilot Launched

Skills for Care launching a text message pilot to support the wellbeing of leaders and managers working in adult social care. The study is based on wellbeing programmes that have supported other frontline professions which we believe can also promote wellbeing in social care. Text messages will be sent weekly for 15 weeks starting on 19 October and will include tips and prompts to help you look after yourself and help with your own wellbeing. Places are limited so take a look at the Skills for Care Website for more information and register now.

28 September 2020- Care Home Frequent Caller Support Project - Yorkshire Ambulance Service

As updated at the last Partners in Care Virtual Forum, Yorkshire Ambulance Service is currently working on a project involving Care Homes. This includes Residential and Nursing Homes, Mental Health and learning disability homes/units. The frequent caller team are using the quantity of calls to 999 as an indication that the home may need further support with alternative local services and are focusing on homes which make either 8 or more calls in a calendar month or three or more calls in a day. 

The project involves contacting the care homes, identifying trends, liaising with agencies within the different areas. They are collaboratively working with local provisions and support networks to assist the care home staff. Due to the pandemic and the additional support Care homes have required, they have adapted our project and our supporting role. We are temporarily increasing the projects scope to incorporate all CCG areas YAS cover. Discussions include; what support is available, EOL care plans, GP involvement, Covid-19 cases within the care home, use and availability of PPE, and falls information.

This work has enabled the team to get a greater understanding of what is currently available for the care homes to access other than 999 and 111. They continue to successfully share information with community care home teams, community matrons and social care, providing them up to date and relevant information for individual’s ongoing care. Their ultimate aim is to improve working relationships between YAS and Care homes across Yorkshire.

For further information please contact

Natalie Howson                 


Tel: 07342093414

Samantha Pinder    


Tel: 07767827673

28 September 2020- Project ECHO COVID Q&A and Future Sessions

Please find through these links the slides and answers to questions raised by providers by Dr Andrew Lee at a recent Project ECHO session. These cover topics including understanding what Covid tests mean, how long residents can be infectious for, antibody test and what the R rate is.

Project ECHO have a series of similar reflective learning sessions for care providers planned over the coming months, including the below.

Looking after ourselves in the workplace: The power of Mindfulness

The role that Unconscious Bias can play in how we deliver care

The importance of Advance Care Planning

Supporting those who care: We are here for you too

For more information on these and to book, please follow this link. These sessions take place virtually through Zoom

28 September 2020- Additional Apps for Care Provider Tablets

Following recent requests, the below apps have been rolled out automatically to care provider tablets

  •  Skype
  • Care Workforce App
  • Facebook Messenger

 If you have any requests for additional apps or have any queries regarding these devices please call

21 September 2020- Antibody Testing for Social Care

Please find details of how access an antibody test for adult social care staff below. This information is also available through a poster, alongside the SOP/consent form and frequently asked questions.

What is the antibody test?

  • Antibody tests are now being provided free of charge by the NHS to anyone in paid adult social care employment, whether they have had symptoms or not.
  • The antibody test is a voluntary blood test which involves taking blood from the arm and determines whether you have had Coronavirus.
  • Antibody test results will help to understand the prevalence of the virus across the country and may be helpful in the future if scientific research is released with conclusive findings about immunity. 
  • It is important to note there is currently no evidence to show that someone cannot be re-infected with the virus, or pass it on to others, or have protective immunity. This means anyone with a positive antibody test will need to continue following government guidelines, such as social distancing and using PPE.

Site locations and opening times and how to book

  • To request an antibody test, please call this below number between 8am and 5pm Mon-Fri: 01904 725817
  • You will need to provide your name, DOB and either your NHS number or address.

 Initial testing is being delivered at: Peppermill Court, Ramsay Close, Clifton, York, YO31 8SS. Testing is open: Mon –Fri from 08:00 -17:00

There will be up to 100 slots available daily. These must be booked using the dedicated line.

Please read, complete, and print the consent form if you have access to a printer. This will reduce chance of delay. If you don’t have access to a printer, paper copies will be available at Peppermill upon arrival.

21 September 2020- Medicines Reuse Scheme Reminder

Following the discussion at Partners in Care last week, a reminder to all homes that are operating a medicines for reuse scheme that it can only be used when it is not possible to obtain a supply for the person in a timely fashion by the usual routes. Attempts should be made to obtain supplies in the usual fashion as the first step. Further information on the scheme can be obtained through this link

21 September 2020- Admission to Hospital Reminder

As we head into the winter season where infectious diseases traditionally rise, it is important that the hospital can plan for isolation effectively when admitting residents to prevent spread of infection. When a resident is admitted to hospital, please can homes ensure ambulance crews and hospital staff are fully informed of:

  • Any risk of infectious disease for the resident
  • If possible when they were last tested for Covid-19 and the result
  • Please also bear in mind any potential contacts the resident may have had within your home that could increase risk of infection

The Trusted Transfer document or your organisations equivalent will have opportunity for this information to be included, along with the Inter Health and Social Infection Control Transfer Form.  Please ensure it is clearly identified for receiving staff. To access the Trusted Transfer document and inter health and social care infection control transfer form please follow this link.

 If you have any queries please contact

21 September 2020- NHS Mail Deactivation and Format Changes (Updated)

The CCG has been notified that any care provider NHS Mail accounts that haven’t been active within the last 6 months will be deactivated on 31 October. We are currently contacting any providers that we have been notified have an inactive account, however to prevent this deactivation then all you need to do is to log into your account.

We have also been made aware that from 25 September the format of care provider generic email address will change from to We have been reassured that following the change any emails sent to the previous email address will automatically be directed through to the new address. Please find an email that has been sent to providers by NHS Mail on this subject,

For any NHS Mail queries please contact:

14 September 2020- Direct Referrals for Dietetics, Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy (Care Homes Only)

Following a suggestion at the Partners in Care Virtual Forum, the guidance for homes on making a direct referral in the above specialities has been amended to ask that homes also send a copy of the referral to their GP practice for information. This way the information is shared with practice directly after the referral has been made.

This has been added to the webpage where the forms and guidance are available.

14 September 2020- Visiting, MCA and Care Setting Guidance Updates

  • Visiting Guidance. The CYC/NYCC visiting guidance has been amended to include the continuation of window visits when other visiting restrictions are in place. Visits for people who are receiving End of Life Care should be viewed as essential visits, in line with the Five Priorities for Care . 
  • MCA Guidance: This has been updated to clarify where face to face  professional visits are appropriate in the context of the  DoLS legal framework.
  • Care Home and Domiciliary Care Guidance. These have been updated to include a new section on supporting Test and Trace through sharing contact details of staff, visitors/ family members and previous residents when requested.

14 September 2020- T34 Syringe Driver Alert: Incorrect Batteries

 Please find through this link an internal alert from York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation that has been shared for your information.  This is to note that PROCELL batteries are not suitable because they are significantly smaller and will lose contact, causing issues with infusion. NX batteries are a much tighter fit and are the best batteries to choose.

14 September 2020- DSPT Registration Webinars for Care Providers

When: Weekdays from 2:00-2:15

All care providers who have not yet registered for the Data Security Protection Toolkit and invited to attend daily webinars run by the regional DSPT team from NHS England and Improvement. These will provide a chance to ask questions and be run through registration process. For more information and joining details please view this flyer.

 Alternatively if you have any further queries please contact:

14 September 2020- Press Release: Vale of York CCG’s Quality and Nursing Team up for another Nursing Times Award

 NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) could win a Nursing Times award later this year thanks to their work with care homes and domiciliary providers, which has helped reduce avoidable harm and improved the deterioration of residents within our community.

A partnership was formed with the CCG and Yorkshire and Humber Patient Safety Collaborative to achieve this work, after a rise in residents being admitted to hospital in an emergency. The aim of this initiative was to reduce these unplanned admissions, and increase the staff confidence in recognising the signs for deterioration.

To achieve the increase in confidence, sessions were held face to face within the care homes prior to COVID. However since social distancing guidelines, a handbook was developed for care homes to work through themselves.

The team also organised and hosted a conference in Recognising and Responding to Deterioration, which focused on the ‘STOP’ and ‘WATCH’ tool. To read more about this tool, click here.

 To read the press release in full please follow this link

08 September 2020- CHC Assessment Resumption Update

Anita Griffiths updated on the resumption of CHC assessments at last week’s Partners in Care Virtual Forum. For an audio version of this update please get in touch.

NHS England has stated from 1 September all CHC teams nationally should resume their assessment work DST’s: People have being placed on the waiting list for DST’s since 19 March 2020, are now been brought forward for their DST’s. In order to give a robust assessment, the CHC assessor and the SCA will need access to their care plans and daily records, and a member of staff who is familiar with their daily care needs. We are inviting family to join the meeting virtually, and in some cases the social care assessor may also do this.

  • Checklists’: CHC assessors will resume completing Checklists, not nursing home managers’ at this time
  • Change in condition: resume completing and sending these to CHC
  • FNC referrals: submit as usual, CHC will complete a health needs assessment and a checklist if appropriate
  • Reviews:  will continue, with virtual families, but will need to access care homes for these from now
  • CHC Staff will have masks and gloves for direct access visits

08 September 2020- COVID-19 Vaccine Trail- Volunteers Wanted

The National Institute for Health Research are looking to recruit as many people as possible to join the COVID-19 vaccine research registry. By registering, this allows NHS approved researchers to contact you for any suitable vaccine studies which you are able to whether to take part or not. A poster is available which you can share with colleagues or display in your service.

08 September 2020- Vale of York Care Home Team Update

We are delighted to welcome Maureen Hole to the team AT Project Nurse for LD and Autism. Maureen qualified in 1994 and has held a variety of nursing posts in acute and community settings. Her last post prior to joining the CCG was as a health trainer with City of York Council. Maureen’s main focus within the team is to support care providers for people with a learning disability and/or autism. To contact Maureen, please email

01 September 2020- Direct Referrals to Therapies and Dietetic Advice (Care Homes)

Care homes no longer need to go through a GP to refer a resident for community physiotherapy, occupational therapy or dietetic advice.

This will be supported by the York Community Therapy Team who are part of the named Multidisciplinary Team available to support local care homes as we move into the recovery phase of the COVID-19 pandemic.

If therapy needs arise, care homes can refer directly using a referral form and contact the Community Therapy Team for support if needed.

The below referral forms are available through this link:

  • Community Physiotherapy / Occupational Therapy Referral
  • Dietetic Advice

The teams are also able to offer virtual consultation training through the Attend Anywhere platform, which is available through Google Chrome and be accessed through the tablets allocated to care homes by the CCG.

If you have any queries please contact the respective teams through the contact details on the forms. Please note that exclusion criteria apply to both referrals and they are only open to residents who have a Vale of York GP.

01 September 2020- Updated Adults Social Care Guidance and Hospital Discharge Guidance

  •  A single page has been published  usefully bringing together all ASC  guidance for home care , supported living and care homes  in one place. This page can be visited through this link.
  • New hospital discharge guidance has been published , which replaces the guidance first published in March
  • This builds on the same day discharge to assess model, continuing with the requirement for care providers to start care provision the same day as referral , 7 days a week. Full details for care providers can be found through section 9 of the guidance, available through this link.

24 August 2020- Temperature Screening Device Alert

Following on from questions at last week’s Partners in Care ECHO Forum, it has been clarified that the recent IPC alert specifically relates to temperature screening devices you walk up to a screen and it takes your temperature. These were designed for building sites and are being missold to care establishments and only measure surface skin temp and highly inaccurate. The hand held infra-red ones that are medical devices like you see in hospital are excellent and are preferable to the in the ear one for IPC purposes.

The government guidance that came out can be found through this link. The specific information relating to these products is below:

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulated Agency (MHRA) states that “There is little scientific evidence to support temperature screening as a reliable method for detection of COVID-19 or other febrile illness, especially if used as the main method of testing”.

Temperature readings from thermal cameras and other ‘temperature screening’ products, e.g. hand held non-contact thermometers, measure skin temperature rather than core body temperature. In either case, temperature variations can occur in healthy people, therefore, these readings are unreliable for detection of COVID-19 or other illness causing fever. Additionally, infected people who do not develop a fever or do not show any symptoms (asymptomatic) would not be detected by a temperature reading and are more likely to spread the virus unknowingly. Only use medical devices for temperature screening which are regulated by MHRA.

24 August 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

This week we wanted to share links to a couple of music resources. Music for Dementia, a radio station that plays music from different eras from 30s to the 70s to promote reminiscence. It can be accessed via Alexa and has a video about how this can be set up.

We also have Playlist for Life which has a downloadable personal music journal booklet that can be completed to help document a person’s musical preferences to build up a picture of likes and dislikes and music that can be calming or invigorating.

As ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professionals only line: 01904 461196.


24 August 2020- Skills for Care August Update

The latest update from Skills for Care can be found through this link. Angela Thompson will be giving an update covering the latest training and resources available in more detail at a future Partners in Care Virtual Forum.

 The update includes information on the below among others

  • Bite size resources around effective delegation and empowering your staff
  • Resources to support those completing the care certificate
  • Distance recruitment resources
  • Fully funded rapid induction programme, refresher training and volunteer programme
  • Apprenticeships
  • Verification of expected death
  • Digital leadership and skills

24 August 2020- Emollients: Fire Risk and Precautions Campaign

The MHRA and National Fire Chiefs Council have launched a new campaign to raise awareness of fire risk and precautions that need to be taken by users of skin creams. This contains a short video and a PowerPoint presentation for staff training and information. Also links to other resources such as posters and information for people who use the products. The resources can be found through this link.

17 August 2020- Partners in Care Virtual Forum

The CCG will be relaunching the Partners in Care Forum virtually on Thursday 03 September. This follows the assistance of the Project ECHO team at St Leonards Hospice who have helped support us run the Partners in Care Project ECHO Covid-19 Support Network since the start of the current outbreak.

The forum is open to all care homes and domiciliary providers from across the Vale of York, and is designed to provide support with the latest guidance, updates from across health and social care and a chance to ask questions of both health professionals and fellow care sector colleagues. There forum is also open to and attended by partner organisations who support care providers from acute care, mental health, local authority and Skills for Care among others.

The forum will take place every 2 Weeks on a Thursday from 2:00-2:45. The sessions will take virtually place using Zoom and calendar invites will be sent out to all partners very shortly.

As before, Partners in Care is a collaborative forum that is shaped by and intended to support the care sector. So if you have any topics for discussion or updates you would like to request please contact All are welcome so please forward the invites to any colleagues who would like to attend.

17 August 2020- Data Security and Protection Toolkit Registration


As you may be aware the deadline for completing the Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT), which enables you to be compliant with national guidance around Information Governance has been extended due to Covid.  The requirement to complete the DSPT in order to access NHS Mail has also temporarily been waived. Following discussion at a national level, the new deadline for DSPT completion is 31 March 2021.

The only action that is required at this stage is for individual care homes/domiciliary providers to register an account for the DSPT by 30 September. By registering for this, you will be able to access a training programme which is currently being designed at a national and regional level to help guide you through completion from October-March.

To register

 Please note that no action is required at this stage if your provider has already completed the DSPT to Standards Met or Entry Level stage. If your provider has already registered for the DSPT previously but not completed then you will also have an account already registered so no action required. For any questions at this stage please contact

17 August 2020- Infection Prevention and Control Team Bulletin and PPE Guidance

The latest bulletin from the Community IPC Team focuses on COVID-19 Advice on 'Fogging' and 'Temperature screening'. To access the bulletin please follow this link

Public Health England have also published a useful 'PPE guide for community health and social care settings: What PPE to wear and when - an illustrative guide' 28/07/20.  This can be accessed from the following link

11 August 2020- Nutrition Training  (Care Homes Only)

Dr Sarah Baker, Professional Lead for Dietetics updated at last week’s Partners in Care ECHO Network around the offer of nutritional training that her team are able to provide Vale of York Care Homes. The training is anticipated to take 30 minutes-1 hour and will help those taking part a greater knowledge of nutrition to help embed in their service. To express an interest in this training please email Nutrition&Dietetics@YORK.NHS.UK

11 August 2020- New Apps for Care Provider Tablets

 Following a request from a care home, the following 5 apps will be made available on all care provider tablets.

  • React to Red- App based upon to React to Red pressure ulcer prevention training programme
  • ISTUMBLE- Health assessment tool that can be used following a fall
  • Yellow Card- MHRA resource for monitoring and collecting information on adverse reactions to medication, as well as safety alerts.
  • IDDSI- Framework for looking up IDDSI food and drink consistencies
  • NHS Safeguarding- Tool to raise awareness of safeguarding requirements

 If there is an app that you think would be beneficial to add to your device, please contact

11 August 2020- Training Available Through the CCG

A reminder that the CCG Project Nurses are still  available to deliver the below training to care providers as required. This can be done either virtually or face to face as required.

 Helen -

  • React2Falls- Falls Prevention
  • React2Red – Pressure Ulcer prevention
  • PPE – donning and doffing/ handwashing

 Kay –

  • Recognising and Responding to Deterioration
  • PPE – donning and doffing/ handwashing

 For more information on these training programmes, as well as other training available to care providers please access our Partners in Care Training Page.

11 August 2020- Supporting BAME Across Social Care

Skills for Care is currently undertaking some work to find out more about the experiences of adult social care workers from a black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) background during the COVID-19 pandemic. The BAME workforce plays a vital role in the day-to-day care of people in our communities and it is critical we know more. Four webinars have been created which can be viewed through their website, covering supportive leadership, building alliances to support BAME staff, mental wellbeing and creating collaborations and supportive networks within organisations.

04 August 2020- Chief Medical Officer Decision to Increase Self-Isolation Period

In symptomatic people COVID-19 is most infectious just before, and for the first few days after symptoms begin. It is very important people with symptoms self-isolate and get a test, which will allow contact tracing.

With widespread and rapid testing available and the relaxation of other measures, the Chief Medical Officer has now extended the self-isolation period from 7 to 10 days for those in the community who have symptoms or a positive test result. This will help provide additional protection to others in the community. This is particularly important to protect those who have been shielding and in advance of the autumn and winter when we may see increased community transmission.

04 August 2020- Health and Social Care Workers Flu Immunisation campaign 2020

Campaign materials specifically to encourage health and social care providers to have the flu vaccination are now available to order.  A separate campaign with materials will be available for the general public later this month.

If you are not already registered with the PHE Campaign resource Centre, you can do this on line and then print off resources encourage your staff to have the flu vaccination this year. The emphasis this year is on ‘Protect’. Protect you, your family, your colleagues, those you care for’, Badges for staff to wear with ‘I’ve had my flu jab’ on them are also available and nationally they are encouraging the use of these so please order some and encourage staff to wear them.

There are a whole range of posters, leaflets, stickers, digital and paper resources to use.

04 August 2020-Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

This week we wanted to share some resources about creating psychological safety with your teams and why it is important to do so. Here is a link to the key elements leaders need to utilise to build psychological safety in their teams.

We are also attaching a flyer and checklist about setting up a staff wellbeing group to enable reflection during these extraordinary times.

 As ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

04 August 2020- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) illustrated guide for community and social care settings

Published on 31 July, a new illustrated guide is now available identifying what PPE should be worn and when in community and social care settings.

This resource outlines personal protective equipment (PPE) advice for health and social care workers working in the community. Guidance should be used in conjunction with local policies. The guide offers five common scenarios for Health and social care workers in the community and outlines the correct PPE for your work.

04 August 2020- Updated NHS Mail User Guide

NHS England and Improvement have created a really useful user guide to help those starting out with NHS Mail to navigate the system and provide a guide to completing tasks including:

  • Adding more NHS Mail accounts for colleagues within your service
  • Resetting or changing passwords
  • Gaining access to the shared mailbox for your care home/provider
  • Searching for an NHS employee’s email address through the NHS directory

The guide is designed for those using the NHS Mail website, but the same principles apply for those using Outlook. Having an account will allow your provider to share patient identifiable information securely and directly with a wide variety of NHS services as well as local authority. If you have any queries or needed assistance in accessing your account for the first time then please contact

27 July 2020- Working Safely in Care Homes and Domiciliary Care Guidance

The above national guidance was updated on 20 July. Please find below a summary of the recommendations below that has kindly been put together by Phillippa Press (Public Health, City of York Council)

The guidance has been amended to include recommendation for the use of face masks and coverings in social care settings. In this scenario the use of face masks or face coverings is not considered PPE, i.e. mask use in this case is not used for protection of the staff member wearing the mask but is to prevent them passing on COVID-19 from their mouth and nose to other people in the care home. The face masks used are not the are either Type I or II. However the Type IIR mask may be used if Type I or II are not available.

The guidance for care homes and domiciliary care was updated to take into account the sustained transmission of COVID-19. Providers will need to consider how to operationalise these guidelines in their own setting and in line with their operating procedures.

The guidance for both areas includes the addition of ‘Table 3’ which outlines the use of face masks or face coverings in ‘any other situation and at a distance of 2 of two meters or more away’.

These recommendations apply:

  • When in a care home and not meeting conditions set out in Tables 1 or 2
  • E.g. when working in staff only areas, such as staff common rooms, office, laundry room, kitchen.
  • Whatever your role (i.e. applies to all staff, care workers, cleaners, receptionists etc.) even if you do not deliver care to residents.

Note: this is not considered PPE, i.e. mask use in this scenario is not used for protection of the staff member wearing the mask but is to prevent them passing on COVID-19 from their mouth and nose to other people in the care home.

All other measures to protect you and others should continue:

  • Hand hygiene (cleaning your hands regularly and appropriately);
  • Respiratory hygiene (“catch it, bin it, kill it”), avoiding touching your face with your hands,
  • Following standard infection prevention and control precautions
  • Increased cleaning of frequently touched surfaces and

  Ensure you practice social distancing (at least 2 metres from other individuals including staff members).

27 July 2020- Apprenticeships and Traineeship

Claire Ryan from the Humber Coast and Vale Excellence Centre attended last week’s Partners in Care ECHO Network to discuss her new role supporting care providers among other organisations in accessing information and support around Apprenticeships. The work she helps support can be broken down into the following.

  • Support with setting up and using Digital Apprenticeship Service (DAS) accounts
  • Receiving levy transfers from other organisations or reserving funds from the ESFA
  • Guidance on using apprenticeships in workforce development & planning
  • Support with accessing government incentives

Claire is contactable  via email at if you have any questions relating to Apprenticeships.

21 July 2020- Randox Test Kits for Coronavirus Testing

All providers are being asked to immediately pause use of the Randox testing kits following the notification from the government last week.

Please all of your unused Randox kits in a safe place to ensure that they are not used or mixed with other test kits, and one of our team will be in contact with you next week to confirm next steps.

All impacted care homes will be assisted to get replacement kits as soon as possible. The national track and trace team will be in contact over the to confirm arrangements. The Coronavirus (COVID-19): getting tested guidance has been updated following on from this notification

The alternative type of test  in use is Kingfisher. This is the updated link to register completed Kingfisher  tests for staff and resident. Instructions on using non Randox kits can be found through this link.

Providers  who have not yet registered on the site for whole site testing  can do so through this link as this is  now the first port of call for routine regular whole site testing of residents and staff.  A series of webinars from DHSC on whole home testing are scheduled and can be booked onto through this link

21 July 2020- Apprenticeship and Traineeship Update

Following the announcement from the Chancellor last week around ‘Plan for Jobs’ and the additional funding for traineeships and apprenticeships, we are happy to announce two major updates to the support available to businesses:

  • Businesses will receive a £1,000 bonus payment from the Government for every trainee they offer a work experience placement to.
  •  Businesses will be given £2,000 for each new apprentice they hire under the age of 25. This is in addition to the existing £1,000 payment that the Government already provides for new 16-18-year-old apprentices and those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care Plan.

 The Excellence Centre are currently working on a project across the Humber, Coast and Vale to support GP Practices, Nursing  and Care Home and Hospices to become digitally ready to access the apprenticeship funding available and receive transferred funds from other organisations who have had unspent apprenticeship levy funds.

Additionally, a key focus of the project is to support your service with workforce development and the potential to use apprenticeships within their practices; either as new recruits or to up skill substantive employees.

Health Education Yorkshire will be holding a series of short webinars throughout August and September on apprenticeships, traineeships and workforce development. The first webinar is on Trainee Nursing Associates on Thursday 6 August 2020.  Click here to book a place

If you would like to discuss using apprenticeships within your workforce or utilising the apprenticeship funding available or would like to request webinars on anything specific relating to apprenticeships or workforce development, please contact Claire Ryan, Project Manager at

21 July 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

This week we have a booklet put together by Tees, Esk and Wear Valley NHS Trust that is about meeting the needs of residents in care homes during the Covid-19 Pandemic. Within the booklet you will find links to some seminars from other NHS Trusts and also a link to an excellent animation about meeting residents’ needs:

As ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

20 July 2020- Community Health Services Education, Training and Guidance Resources

Please find through this link a useful document that brings together providers free national training for care providers into one document.

The document also links to a site which holds all the government and PHE information for the adult social care sector on responding to the coronavirus pandemic in one central holding. This includes:

  •  How to work safely in care homes
  • Admission and care of people in care homes
  • Coronavirus (Covid-19) Health & wellbeing of the adult work force
  • Coronavirus (Covid-19) How to work safely in domiciliary care

 Details of further training opportunities, including those hosted by the CCG can be found through this link.  

15 July 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

This week we have a printable calendar for your staff room with tips on easy ways to maintain our well-being and a leaflet on keeping your residents active with some ideas of activities for different abilities.

As ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

15 July 2020- Type IIR Cardinal Masks Advisory Note

 Please note the recommendation from MHRA through this link that all lots of the product detailed below are disposed of locally.

  • Mask, Type IIR
  • Supplier: Cardinal Health
  • NPC: BWM028
  • MPC: AT74535UK
  • Applies to all lots of AT74535UK (Lot numbers detailed in the link above)

There is a risk to staff wearing the mask if the foam strip on the mask flakes and enters their airway or mouth. There have also been complaints of the ties and/or stitching coming away from the mask

06 July 2020- Use of Tablets and Digital Devices by Independent Care Providers

Independent care providers across the Vale of York  are using digital technology to a greater extent recently (including tablets allocated to a number of services by the CCG)  to enable virtual consultations, additional clinical use and by residents.  This is a reminder to follow best IPC practice when using these devices in care settings. Please ensure regular cleaning and between use. It is good practice to limit use of an individual device to individual units where possible. For those providers who have been allocated multiple tablets by the CCG, the number allocated was partially based on the number of floors to help support limiting risk of cross infection

09 July 2020- Trusted Transfer Documentation for Care Homes

Following recent discussions around discharge related issues (including at a recent Partners in Care/ECHO Network where representative from the discharge team responded to feedback from care home managers), a reminder for care homes to use the Trusted Transfer of Care Document where appropriate to accompany residents on admission to hospital either electronically or through paper copy.

The document can be found through this link, and a brief for care homes through this link. For an example document please follow this link.

Please note the completion of the Trusted Transfer of Care Document is the responsibility of the care home with the exception of any changes during the hospital stay which must be documented on the variance sheet (by hospital staff). Any patients who are a new admission to your care home will not be transferred with the Trusted Transfer of Care Document but we still expect that full information and supporting documents and medications are provided by the discharging hospital unit.

For any issues experienced such as missing documents or medication on discharge please let us know as soon as possible so we can follow this up with YTHFT partners.

To report any feedback, or if you would like to discuss the discharge process in more detail, please contact: Sarah Fiori, Head of Quality Improvement and Research. Email address: and mobile: 07702 657592

06 July 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

This week we have a short video by Teepa Snow showing how the same activity can be adapted for different stages of dementia , and a link to Ken’s quiz site. Here you will find a free on line quiz resource with many different categories that we hope you find fun if not a little brain teasing for you and your residents.

As ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

06 July 2020- Withdrawal of Weian Type IIR Surgical Masks and Gloves

We have been made aware that a Type IIR facemask produced by Weian may contain latex and could cause anaphylactic shock in anyone who is allergic to latex. The recommendation is to avoid wearing these masks and use an alternative brand.

The following gloves (blue sail+ Disposable Nitrile Examination Gloves) are not fit for use because they do not meet EN455 rating. The specification for the INTCO Medical Nitrile Examination Gloves cannot be validated and they should also not be used. For more information please follow this link.

06 July 2020- Community Infection Prevention and Control Team Bulletin -  ‘Correct order for putting on and removing personal protective equipment’.

Please find the latest bulletins from the community IPC team for care homes and domiciliary providers through the below links:

29 June 2020- CAS Alert: Personal Protective Equipment and Heat- Risk of Heat Stress

Wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in warm/hot environments increases the risk of heat stress. Heat stress occurs when the body is unable to cool itself enough to maintain a healthy temperature. Heat stress can cause heat exhaustion and lead to heat stroke if the person is unable to cool down.

Measures to control the temperature of clinical environments and enable staff to make behavioural adaptations to stay cool and well hydrated should be made. Staff may require more frequent breaks and the frequency of PPE changes may increase, with a resulting increase in demand.

For more information on this alert please follow this link

29 June 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

We have a couple of items to share this week. One is a poster for your staff room following on from the Partners in Care/Project ECHO call last week which is a delirium wheel redesigned to include COVID-19.

We are also attaching a booklet full of ideas for managing your mental wellbeing by connecting with nature. It may be a nice resource to share with staff, family or involve some of your residents in them. It is full of simple ideas to make the most of the nature we find all around us.

As ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

29 June 2020- Delirium Webinar Resources

As mentioned during the Partners in Care/Project ECHO session last week, please find resources from the webinar “Delirium and considerations during the Covid-19 pandemic” which was hosted by the Dementia Policy Unit at NHS England and Improvement  on 24th June 2020. As promised, please find enclosed:

22 June 2020- Free Psychological First Aid in Emergencies Training

Public Health England have created a free psychological first aid in emergencies training for frontline staff and volunteers. Training will equip staff to provide support and recognise people at risk of distress

The course follows a globally recommended model for supporting people during emergencies, tailored to the specific challenges of coronavirus (COVID-19). This training takes place over 3 weeks and those who register are asked for a 1 hour per week learning commitment.  To register and for information please follow this link.

22 June 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team (CHAD) York Update

This week we have two information sheets giving ideas on how to support a resident living with dementia who ‘walks with purpose’ and how to maintain wellbeing and reduce distress using reminiscence, simulated presence therapy and virtual entertainment with links to a host of online resources and to Chatter pack which we hope you and your residents will find both informative and enjoyable

One of our team may have already rung you or will be ringing you to see how you and your team are during these extraordinary times and asking if there is anything we can do to help support you. In the meantime, as ever, if you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

22 June 2020- Public Health England Active at Home Booklet

For most of us we are able to go out to exercise, but this is not the case for a lot of older people or people who are shielding. Public Health England have adapted a Sheffield initiative on becoming more active at home to suitable for wider audience An electronic version of this is available through this link for you to print off.

22 June 2020- Care Staff Support Resources and Contacts

Below are a number of the resources that are available to managers and staff should they need support or wish to talk to somebody during the current challenging times. The Quality & Nursing Team recognize the immense challenge our colleagues are facing and would like to offer our support and again reiterate thanks for the personal sacrifices you are all making at home and work to ensure residents and teams are able to continue being safe.  Please do contact if you have any queries or requests for support.

  • National NHS line operated by Samaritans. Call: 0300 131 7000 (7am – 11pm, seven days a week) Text: FRONTLINE to 85258
  • St Leonards Hospice Bereavement Support Line.  01904 777772 Monday to Friday 10am – 4pm  (until 7pm on Thursdays). A suite of resources designed by the Hospice to help support staff within your setting that were presented at the Project ECHO/Partners in Care Forum can be found through this link.
  • Bereavement and Trauma Support Line by Hospice UK. Call: 0300 303 4434 (8am-8pm, seven days a week).
  • Skills for Care has a dedicated support and information line available to all registered and front line managers during the Covid 19 pandemic.  For details on how to access the service, please follow this link. They also have a Facebook group open to all managers, and are setting up WhatsApp and support groups at local level. Regular support webinars are also regularly scheduled. Previous webinars can be found through this link.
  • A number of apps are currently available to health and social care staff including SilverCloud, Sleepio, Daylight and Stay Alive. For more information please follow this link.

15 June 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update

This week, we have a link to a podcast from Martin Bromiley OBE discussing simple ways to prepare for a confident working environment. It includes tips on mentally practising new techniques like taking off PPE and starting the day with effective team meetings:

Also a great poster you can print and share on your staff room wall which gives  practical steps based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) that will help your staff deal with the COVID crisis.

If you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

15 June 2020- HSE Alert- KN95 Facemask

 The Health and Safety Executive released an alert on Thursday 11 June warning against all purchase and use of KN95 facemasks as PPE. This respirator has been identified as suspect and testing has confirmed they would not meet requirements, including to protect against the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

15 June 2020- Covid-19 Testing: Mental Capacity Guidance

 Please find below information for local care homes and domiciliary care providers that has been approved by the Mental Capacity Act group for the Yorkshire and Humber region.

 Whilst recognising that many care providers have significant plans in place, this information; designed by North Yorkshire County Council and agreed by the local MCA group, has been developed to be a supportive tool to care providers supporting those without capacity.

 To complement the MCA tool documents the group is also developing other supportive information that will be circulated soon. The topics include:

  • Capacity and isolation periods;
  • The role of Public Health England and the powers it can exercise;
  • The impact of the recently launched track and trace programme.

08 June 2020- Bereavement Support and Resources

Dr Jonathan Bauer, Bereavement Support Manager at St Leonards Hospice led a powerful session at Thursday’s Partners in Care/Project ECHO network around bereavement and support in care settings focusing on the specific challenges faced by colleagues working in the independent care sector . The session focused on the emotional impact of the current outbreak of residents, relatives/ friends and staff. A number of resources were shared which are available through this link. This includes the presentation that was delivered, some prompts around difficult conversations, resources for those who would value bereavement support as well as case studies to help thinking about approaches. Providers are encouraged to use and adapt these resources for their own use as required.

The Quality & Nursing Team recognise the immense challenge our colleagues are facing and would like to offer our support and again reiterate thanks for the personal sacrifices you are all making at home and work to ensure residents and teams are able to continue being safe.  Please do contact if you have any queries or requests for support.

08 June 2020- Join Social Care Online

 Angela Thompson, Locality Manager, Skills for Care updated at the Partners in Care/ECHO Network, that “Join Social Care” has been developed to accelerate the recruitment process for Adult Social Care, making it easier for care providers to reach people in their local areas looking to work in the sector. Skills for Care is co-ordinating training for people coming into the social care sector through this platform using endorsed providers offering the rapid induction training programme. More information on how to utilise the platform for your setting can be found through this link.

08 June 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update

This week wanted to focus on ideas for supporting your teams.  This information sheet has lots of tips for calming a racing mind as well as links to other online resources.

We heard this week on the Partners in Care/Project ECHO call that some care home teams feel much closer having created a safe place to talk about how they are feeling. This resource provides tips on how to set that up in your home and an easy guide for running them, the ‘Care home team wellbeing group guide’.

And finally, some distraction for your residents and staff, with some free resources from the Wildlife Trust for June.

 If you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us on: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

08 June 2020- Cleaning a Commode Pan Manually: Resources

Infection, Prevention, Control have created a set of resources detailing appropriate cleaning processes and protocols for cleaning a commode. These can be found through the links below:

01 June 2020- Positive people discharged from hospital/ retesting

Following on from the briefing circulated to partners last week regarding retesting and discharge from hospital, Dr Andrew Lee gave a summary of the guidance and evidence behind this briefing at the Project ECHO/Partners in Care Network. The summary can be found through this link. Dr Lee also shared a Twitter thread covering the guidance in further detail.

01 June 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update

This week we are resending an activity you might like to use with your residents and a tips sheet for helping reduce their anxiety about PPE. We are also resharing a great animation from Newcastle Dementia Service about meeting needs during lockdown:

 If you would like any support for your care home and staff during these difficult times, please get in contact with the Care Home and Dementia Team and we will do our best to help. You can email us at: or reach us by phone on our professional’s only line: 01904 461196.

01 June 2020- Heatwave Plans

Bright, hot summer days are what many of us look forward to for the rest of the year – especially in cold, wet England! However, while we’re enjoying the balmy days of summer, we should not forget that the temperature can get high, become uncomfortably hot, and for some, it can become dangerously hot.

The heatwave alert levels will be triggered by temperature thresholds. The Met Office website will be the first place where the alert level is available. NHS Choices can provide additional advice on heatstroke and other heat-related conditions. We also recommended that patients and the public can phone NHS 111 or their GP if they are concerned about their health or others.

 Advice for Care home managers and staff has been produced. Staff will need to make themselves familiar with and look out for signs of heat stress, heat exhaustion and heatstroke. There is also a useful poster for care homes. Please ensure that staff are aware of your heatwave plans. There are lots of resources and information available on the Heatwave Page.

 Other information includes:

01 June 2020- Wearing a Mask: Do’s and Don’ts

The Community Infection, Prevention and Control Team have produced a poster detailing do’s and don’ts for using a face mask within care homes and domiciliary providers. These can be printed off and displayed in your setting


26 May 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update

This week, we wanted to share a leaflet that Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust have created for coping with the death of someone that you know. The leaflet covers common symptoms that you might experience and some tips of how to deal with them.

 We also wanted to share again the leaflet from Namaste Care that gives advice on how to help residents have a sensory-rich end of life with ideas about soothing touch, sound, smell, taste and vision.

18 May 2020- Tiger Eye Protector Product – Removal from the Supply Chain in respect of Covid-19 Use

 The Department for Health and Social Care have released a CAS alert for certain models of protective goggles and frames, which have been tested and do not meet the current requirements for splash protection and shouldn’t be used in a Covid-19 setting. The details of the products concerned are below:

 Tiger Medical Products: Protective Goggles and Frames

Product Codes PG0001 – F and PG0001-L

Barcode for Frames: 6948548400132; Barcode for Lenses: 6948548400224

NPC for Frames (BTP083 and BTP403) and Lenses (BTP097, BTP404 and BTP439)

 The alert in full can be found through this link.

18 May 2020 -Care Home and Dementia Team Update- Psychological Safety and Music for Wellbeing

Feeling safe as a team is really important at the moment: Psychological Safety is about creating a working environment in which everyone feels comfortable sharing their thought and concerns. This week we have a poster for your staff room and a flyer about a free support pack that will help you promote psychological safety within your team.

A free new online resource, which combines science and technology to provide a catalogue of soothing and calming music and videos, has been developed to support people who may feel anxious during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Recovery College Online and Trauma Informed Care teams have joined forces with music technology company X-System; Northumbria University and the Calm Foundation to provide a series of specially designed playlists that can help people to physically relax, manage their mood, be enlivened or helped to breathe and move. The playlists are being made freely available.  For more information follow this link

18 May 2020- IPC Coronavirus Page and Deep Cleaning Guidance

The community Infection, Prevention, Control team have a produced a webpage with guidance for managing Covid-19 within your setting. This includes useful posters that can be displayed, access to an online learning package and in depth deep cleaning guidance for care homes. The page can be found through this link.

 Caroline Gent from the team pulled together a couple of slides following a discussion at a recent Project ECHO sessions, which gives detail around which cleaning solutions are suitable and unsuitable, as well as guidance on using wipes.

12 May 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update

This week we are sharing a document that is a synthesis of current research, clinical opinion and experiences of care home managers that aims to provide guidance for managers supporting care home staff.

 We also wanted to share an animation that has been produced by the Newcastle Dementia Service which highlights some of the innovative ways care homes have been managing to continue to meet the needs of their residents during the Coronavirus pandemic.

If you need to get in touch with us about support for you and your staff, please email


12 May 2020- CARE Workforce App

 A national app has been launched for the adult social care workforce. It will act as a one stop shop for learning resources, guidance, mental health support, discounts and additional support.

The app is available to download from on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, as well as being accessible online through this link. For more information please follow this link

04 May 2020- Reuse of Medication in Care Homes- New Guidance

New national guidance has been published to allow the safe re use of medicines between residents living in the same care home or staying at the same hospice in exceptional circumstances. This includes where a supply cannot be obtained for a person who needs it in a timely manner and the medication is no longer needed by the person it was prescribed for.  

 The guidance, including the process, to be followed is available here (The guidance may change so always check the website for the latest version.)

 Please read this guidance fully to be able to recognise when medication can be used in this way, the records you need to keep, and the consents that should be obtained wherever possible (See Table 3 in the guidance).  Information on the guidance is also being sent to GPs and pharmacists.

 Medication that may be suitable for reuse can be retained. Keep this separate from the in use medication but ensure it is stored safely according to the usual medication storage requirements for that medication, including the temperature and controlled drug requirements. Ensure that the medication is identified as being kept for possible reuse.    

 The Medicines Management Team will be providing further support on implementing this guidance. Any questions or comments at this stage are welcome and should be sent to

04 May 2020- Partners in Care Lessons Learnt: Partners in Care COVID-19 ECHO Response Network

A summary bulletin has been produced by care providers represented at the ECHO Response Network who have experienced an outbreak of COVID-19 within their care setting. This is designed to provide shared learning and guidance to fellow care providers around

  • How cases presented and what symptoms were shown
  • How infections manifested themselves and how providers managed them
  • How staff wellbeing was promoted

Please share and use this resource within your organisation as appropriate. More details on the network and how to join can be found below.

04 May 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update and Change of Number

 In response to a new Mental Health and Crisis Response Line the York Care Home and Dementia Team now have a dedicated number for professionals to contact the team directly.  This number is a dedicated referral / contact number for professionals, partner agencies and stakeholders, please do not share with service users or carers. The York Care Home and Dementia Team professional only number is 01904 461 196. To confirm the Number that can be given out to Service Users is 01904 556 748.

 This week we have a printable poster with tips on how to manage prolonged periods of stress both at work and at home, the ‘Self-Care Tree’. During  the ECHO session on Thursday, there was an excellent presentation about advance care planning and end of life care. ‘Namaste care’ is a gentle approach to end of life that complements the medical needs and life-long beliefs of the individual, please see this document for more information.

As PPE becomes more necessary, some of the people we work with may struggle to understand why the people that care for them look so different. This activity has been developed to help residents understand that beneath all the gear, their friendly carers are still there. You are welcome to print the poster as it is, amend it to suit your needs or use it as an activity with individual residents to build up your own collage.

If you have any innovative and creative ways that you are using to help meet the needs of your residents, please let us know. We have heard of homes using technology to keep up resident and family connections, screening old movies and avoiding the news about COVID-19. If you have any you’d like to share with us, please email

04 May 2020- Recognising and Responding to Deterioration in Residents and Clients: Workbook Now Available

This training programme offered through the CCG is now available in workbook form. The training is appropriate to both new and experienced staff and is useful to providers who have already had face to face training. The aim of the training is to assist staff in recognising and responding to ANY deterioration (including but not limited to Covid-19). Following this training is designed to equip ALL staff with knowledge and tools to communicate deterioration promptly   to teams, GP, YAS and other health and social care services

 For more information please see this flyer, or contact

27 April 2020- Care Home and Dementia Team Update

This week we have an image based downloadable prompt sheet designed by our OT, Karen Melody, which you can use to talk to your residents about covid-19. You are free to adapt this if you wish to suit individual residents. There is also a booklet of ideas from the Health Innovation Network to keep your residents active and occupied during these times. The following link will take you to free resources that explain what happens in our brains and bodies in the face of anxiety and a toolkit of ideas to help us cope: If you need resources around a particular idea, please email us at: and we will do our best to help.

27 April 2020- COVID-19 Training and Resources

Please find through this link an updated list from Health Education England of training currently available, updated versions of this will be circulated to providers. Skills for Care also have a comprehensive section on fully-funded training on their website relating to Rapid Induction, Care Certificate and other skills-based training specific for our sector – again this is being updated and refreshed on a daily basis and can be accessed here

There are also details of further training and resources for care providers through the Six Steps to Success in End of Life Care Programme

27 April 2020- Single Point of Coordination for End of Life Care

An updated leaflet has been produced regarding how to access the single point of coordination for end of life care guidance. The service has been developed by the CCG and St Leonards Hospice, and is accessible from 8:00am to 12:00pm Monday-Sunday. This is available to all Vale of York care homes and domiciliary providers among other organizations. The contact number for the point of access is: 01904 777770

Also available through this link, are  a set of clinical guidance relating to symptom control for COVID-19 patients, which was presented by Dr Anne Garry (Palliative Care Consultant) at the ECHO Network.

21 April 2020- Learning Disability and COVID-19 Resources

The LD nurses within York Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have put together a set of accessible resources during the current outbreak.

21 April 2020- Aerosol Generating Procedures

 As promised at the Project ECHO call on Thursday, please find through this link a list from Public Health England to clarify which procedures and are not classified as aerosol generating.

14 April 2020- Dementia and COVID-19 Resources

Please find a series of resources below with may help your provider managing residents with dementia during the outbreak

03 April 2020- Coronavirus (COVID-19) Related Deaths in the Community: Guidance for Medics, Care Homes and Hospices

 Please find through this link a document which amalgamates guidance from the Coroner’s Office, City of York Council and North Yorkshire County Council (Among other organisations) with regard to COVID-19 related deaths. This includes guidance around handling for care settings, and an update on changes to the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD). We will look to advise further on this guidance at upcoming Project ECHO Networks.

27 March 2020- COVID-19 eLearning Programme- Free

Health Education England e-Learning for Healthcare have created a free eLearning programme available to all staff across health and social care. The programme includes key materials to help the health and care workforce respond to Coronavirus including essential guidance from the NHS, Government and WHO, infection prevention and control, personal protection equipment and more

27 March 2020- Fire Safety Guidance for Care Providers

The North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are  reassuring providers that they are still here to help. Please find some guidance which you may find useful, In addition there is further information through their website. If you have any specific queries or concerns, there is also the facility to ask a question via the website.

09 March 2020- Happy Birthday Join Dementia Research!

Join Dementia Research has recently celebrated its fifth birthday. Although still young, the service has already had a lot of success - making it easier for people to take part in research. Over 25,000 participants have taken part in studies and made a key contribution to the understanding.

To help you spread the word about their work and to get more people involved their work, they have created a digital greetings card that you can send to someone you know who might be interested in research. The more people who register with Join Dementia Research, the faster we can make a difference to the lives of everyone affected by dementia.

02 March 2020- Congratulations Mickle Hill

Congratulations to Mickle Hill in Pickering, who have been rated as outstanding by CQC. Their supported living service was praised for its focus on inclusion and treating people as partners in their care and support, and for a clear focus on patient, relative and staff engagement.

02 March 2020- CQC Report: Promoting sexual safety through empowerment

CQC have published a report looking at how adult social care services keep people safe from sexual incidents. It also looks at how services can support them to express their sexuality. This is part of an aim to build culture of openness in which people can talk about sexual safety and sexuality within adult social care settings, as a first step towards protecting and supporting them. The report can be accessed through this link

18 February 2020- Congratulations Somerset House

A big congratulations to all the team at Somerset House for their hard work during the last year, which has resulted in them being rated Good by CQC this week

10 February 2020- Guidance on employing workers aged 16 and 17

Skills for Care have updated their guidance on employing 16 and 17 year olds, which can be accessed through this link. This guidance has been endorsed by CCG, and recognises the valuable contribution individuals in that age group can make to adult social care. Recommendations made in the guidance include around working hours, pay, training, and coaching and buddying.

04 February 2020- IPC Bulletins: Respiratory and Cough Hygiene

Please follow this link to the latest bulletin produced for care homes by Infection Prevention Control. This bulletin focuses on respiratory and cough hygiene, which has been identified by NHS England and NHS Improvement as one of 10 items within their ‘Standard infection control precautions’ (SICPs).

Previous bulletins produced by IPC include around transfer documents, norovirus, gastroenteritis and nutrition.

04 February 2020-York Advocacy Hub

Jan Tuson attended Partners in Care to update on the services available through the York Advocacy Hub, and how those in receipt of care can benefit from receiving advocacy. The service is a free, independent and quality assured and currently employs 11 advocates across 7 streams of advocacy. More information on these streams can be found within the meeting slides.

If you are unsure if an individual would benefit from an advocate, please don’t hesitate to call 01904 414357

04 February 2020- January Partners in Care Forum: Thank You

A big thank you to all those who attended a packed meeting of Partners in Care on Wednesday 28 January. An audience of 50 representatives from care homes and domiciliary providers, CCG, acute services, research, ambulance service, mental health and primary care took part in an engaging and collaborative afternoon. Updates included around the importance of completing the Data Security Protection Toolkit, closer working between acute services and providers around discharges processes, and how individuals in receipt of care may benefit from an advocate.

6 January- Congratulations Connaught Court

A big congratulations to Connaught Court, who have been recognised as outstanding by CQC. The inspectors remarked that the environment at the home was exceptional, and that best practice in relation for people with dementia was followed and embedded within the service. This creates a calm and homely environment for people to receive care.

It was allow remarked that the home has passionate and forward-thinking managers, who lead the service and provide an inclusive service that engages proactively with people, their relatives and the staff team.

24 December- New UCP Service Poster

Following on from the update Tim O’Dowd delivered to Partners in Care in November, please find attached an updated poster through this link reflecting the new operating hours of the UCP service. Please replace all existing posters with this version.

The service can be accessed by care homes to arrange a visit for minor injuries as an alternative to 999 and 111 for non-emergencies. Services the team can assist with include witness or unwitnessed calls without signs of fracture, muscular back pain, wound care and head injuries.

24 December 2019- The Inter-Health and Social Care Infection Control Transfer Form

The Inter-health and Social Care Infection Control Transfer from has been developed, to help healthcare organisations share information in the transfer of patients/residents to and from health and social care facilities.

 This supports The Health and Social Care Act 2008: Code of Practice on the prevention and control of Infection and related guidance (Department of Health 2015), which states  that “suitable accurate information on infections be provided to any person concerned with providing further support or nursing/medical care in a timely fashion”.

 The Inter-health and Social Care form, should accompany the patient/ resident and, where possible, a copy filed in their notes. The information provided is vital in facilitating the receiving health and social care facility to implement the necessary infection control measures, and help to reduce the risk of spreading infectious organisms. To access the form, please follow this link

16 December 2019- Discharge Collaboration with Partners in Care

Two of our care home managers from York attended the York Complex Discharge Sub Group to share their perspectives on discharge and to help identify areas for collaboration and relationship building. The group listened to stories of when discharge works and when it doesn’t always go to plan.  The CCG will be supporting further work in collaboration with the York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and key stakeholders, and hope all of our Partners in Care will contribute to this.  This is a real opportunity for Partners in care to influence and shape discharge standards alongside colleagues.

16 December 2019- Wolfson Bursaries for Care Homes

Hospice UK have a range of bursaries available for palliative care training which available to nurses, healthcare assistants and allied health professionals within care homes. Individuals can apply for up to 75% of a module or course cost (subject to funding being available), or up to £1500 over a year or £3000 over 3 years. Further information around criteria and examples of eligible courses and conferences can be found through the attached leaflet.

To access the online application form please follow this link. For any queries please contact

16 December 2019- Fax Machine Usage in GP Practices

As you may or may not be aware following on from Securing Excellence in Primary Care (GP) Digital Services: The Primary Care (GP) Digital Services Operating Model 2019-2021, by April 2020 practices will no longer use fax machines for either NHS or patient communications. From speaking with Practices, it has become apparent that care homes and domiciliary providers often send communications to them via fax. Therefore, this will affect the way you communicate with practices if this has been your chosen method of communication. Practices will most likely start to use a regularly monitored and secure NHS Mail e-mail address; these e-mail addresses are currently being collated/created and can be provided in due course.

9 December 2019- Returning of Community Equipment

Pam Bolderson from the CCG and Darren Clark from Medequip attended November Partners in Care to reiterate the importance of returning equipment which is no longer being used, or being used by an individual it wasn’t prescribed for. Due to the loans based model the community equipment contract is based on, all equipment is still being paid for by the NHS and social care until it is returned (upon which 90% of the equipment cost is returned to the NHS). Anybody can call Medequip to request a collection through the details below. More information on community equipment can be found through the meeting slides.

Call: 01423 226240 or Email:

9 December- Bisphosphonates

Following a number of reports of incidents of finding that bisphosphonates such as alendronic acid have been administered at the wrong times or in the wrong way, Karen Lepper and colleagues have produced this poster to highlight the issues.

This poster covers:

  • What bisphosphonates are
  • How they should be taken
  • What happens if instructions are not followed

For any further queries please contact

9 December 2019- Recognising and Responding to Deterioration Conference: Slides

Thank you all those who attend the conference around recognising and responding to deterioration on 26 November in York. The day focused on the trial of the STOP and WATCH tool to help identify deterioration in residents through softer signs, and included input from care homes, domiciliary providers, GP’s, the care home and dementia team at Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust. There was also discussion around topics including falls prevention, sepsis, dementia and oral health.

 The slides can be accessed in 3 parts below:

 Slides Part 1

Slides Part 2

Slides Part 3

03 December 2019- Alert: Risk of death and severe harm from ingesting superabsorbent polymer gel granules

 NHS England and Improvement have released a National Patient Safety Alert applicable to services including care homes, community settings and hospices.

 Superabsorbent polymer gel granules (including sachets, mats and loose powder) are used to reduce spillage onto bedding, clothing and floors when patients use urine bottles or vomit bowls, or when staff move fluid-filled containers (eg washbowls, bedpans). In 2017, NHS Improvement issued a Patient Safety Alert1 warning of the asphyxiation risk associated with the use of these gel granules. A patient died after ingesting a sachet of gel granules that had been left in a urine bottle in their room.

 Since 2017, there have been a further 12 reported incidents of ingestion by patients; two patients died, and two patients required emergency treatment. These involved polymer gel products left in their urine bottles or vomit bowls or left for nearby patients to use. These incident reports, and NHS purchasing patterns, suggest providers have been relying on local awareness raising rather than reviewing their overall approach to the use of these products. As a result of these incidents, and new guidance reinforcing that polymer gels are only required for exceptional infection control purposes this alert requires any organisation still using these products to protect patients by introducing strict restrictions on their use.

 Information on actions required are detailed through this link. The deadline for actions to be complete is 01 June 2020.

 If you have any queries relating to this alert, please contact with the reference NatPSA/2019/002/NHSPS


25 November 2019- Guidance on Using Social Media

With Christmas approaching, partners from across the Vale of York are understandably keen to share what is happening  in their organisation.  The Nursing and Midwifery Council have produced a set of guidance that may be of assistance in deciding what is and isn’t appropriate to share through social media, and how to balance the benefits from and responsibilities of its use. The main principles of the guidance are:

  • Be informed
  • Think before you post
  • Protect your professionalism and your reputation

The guidance applies to registered nursing staff, but also the same principles apply to other colleagues and management staff.

To read the guidance please follow this link

25 November 2019- Social Care Digital Self-Assessment

Skills for Care working in partnership with Digital Social Care to create a digital self-assessment tool for social care employers.

The free online tool will help to measure:

  • How capable staff are in harnessing the benefits of digital tools and skills
  • Whether they have the right infrastructure in place to use more digital tools.

It will also help employers to understand where they may have gaps that could be preventing them from working in a more digital way. Once completed, an email report will be sent based on the responses and include ‘top tips’ and resources to help employers progress on their digital journey.

To Access the tool, please follow this link.

18 November 2019- Reduce length of stay: New e-learning resource

A new e-learning tool called ActNow has been developed for health and care staff to help them prevent delayed transfers of care. The tool can be used by nurses, allied health professionals and care staff to ensure patients have the best outcomes possible following care received in hospital. It includes resources to help staff take prompt practical actions and use every opportunity to ensure patients are cared for in the best place.

Please pass them on to relevant colleagues and teams within your organisations. If you would like any further information about Act Now Home First support, please contact

28 October 2019- Stop and Watch Success at Apple Tree Care Home

Congratulations to Apple Tree Care Home who have completed Stop and Watch training, and are now are successfully using the tool effectively to recognise and respond to deterioration in residents. Deputy Manager Sharon Clemitt received a certificate on Thursday to recognise the work their staff have undertaken to embed Stop and Watch tool in the home.

21 October 2019- Well Done Alison!

Congratulations to Alison Redhead, Manager of Minster Grange who was a finalist in Thursday’s York Press Community Pride Awards. Alison was nominated in the Health Service Hero category for being an exemplary example of a caring, committed and passionate nursing home manager who is dedicated to ensuring that the service provided is of the highest standard.

21 October 2019- Tips From a Manager: How to Manage Flu Season in Your Provider

Linda Donnellan-Beevers from Amarna House Care Home has kindly provided the below summary of how she manages her home during flu season, to give ideas you could implement in your setting.

“We are doing the flu clinic again this year and I put up flyers. All staff are welcome to have one, and my residents have all completed consent forms we are have wine and cheese after for the brave. This will be our second successful year and everyone looks forward to it because we make it fun but with a serious note on the importance. I liaised with the GP and District nurses and we agreed to hold flu clinics on site. I encouraged staff to let the GP practice know they worked here and they were added to the list. I achieved 98% staff vaccinated last year . Boots also gave me cards to give out for free flu jabs for health workers and 5 staff used this service. We were also awarded the Gold award for vaccinating staff from NHS England and Improvement”

14 October 2019- NICE Quality Improvement Resource

The National Institute for Clinical Effectiveness (NICE) have developed a resource to help providers and commissioners of adult social care to map NICE guidelines against CQC key lines of enquiry. The tool can be used to

• Find quality statements (from our quality standards)

• Look at recommendations (from our managing medicines guidelines)

• Start conversations with provider colleagues to agree ways to improve quality of care in your area

• Agree ways to measure quality improvements.

To access the tool please follow this link

14 October 2019- Social Care Institute for Excellence Bulletin

The Social Care Institute for Excellence produce a bulletin that may be of interest to partners. The October edition includes guidance on strengths based leadership, dementia awareness e-learning, and a webinar on giving medicines covertly. To register for the bulletin please follow this link.

06 October 2019- Fire Door Safety Week

September 23 - 29 marked #FireDoorSafetyWeek, an awareness week  launched in 2013 in response to a legacy of fire door neglect. The campaign aims raise awareness of the role that fire doors play in protecting life and property. 

Often fire doors are neglected and not maintained properly, which can have devastating effects. Issues around the installation of fire doors are often seen by the fire service, and building owners are encouraged to check the operation and condition of their fire doors and report those that aren't satisfactory.

Resources and more information on how to ensure you are doing everything possible to maintain fire doors and more can be found on the Fire Door Safety Week website.

06 October 2019- Adrenaline and Flu Update from Partners in Care

Following discussions at the last Partners in Care around adrenaline and flu PGD’s, Karen Lepper has asked that the following guidance be shared.

A PGD is not needed for adrenaline 1:1000 up to 1mg for intramuscular use in anaphylaxis as it is listed in Schedule 19 of the Human Medicines Regulation 2012 which allows administration without a prescription for the purpose of saving life in an emergency.

If organisations are considering offering to immunise their own staff the flu vaccine, this resource should be used.

06 October 2019- Skills for Care Nursing News Bulletin

Skills for Care have launched a new Nursing News subscription facility on their website aimed exclusively at adult social care managers delivering services with nursing.  This gives update on their work to support the 41,000 nurses in adult social care. The first bulletin includes information from the NMC and newly released videos around the role of Nursing Associate. To subscribe to these bulletins and for more information please follow this link.

25 September 2019- September Partners in Care Forum

A big thank you to all our partners who took the time from their day to attend last week’s forum. There was a fantastic attendance of 30 individuals from across the care sector, primary care, local authority, mental health and medicines management. The group took part in detailed discussion around experiences of discharge, CHC funding processes, and how the supply of continence product service could be improved. Partners also heard about the benefits of completing the Data Security Protection Toolkit, how to prepare for flu season and issues around medication.

16 September 2019- Risks associated with 'fixed' furniture

A recent Regulation 28 Coroner’s Report to CQC has highlighted risks associated with the use of ‘fixed’ furniture in care home rooms. ‘Fixed’ furniture means cupboards, tables, chairs and so on that are fixed to the floor so that they cannot move. Sadly, the resident of a care home died recently when they fell from their bed at night, trapping their head between their bed and some fixed furniture next to it. Becoming trapped was a significant contributor to their death. Regulation 12 of the Regulated Activities Regulations requires that services are run in a safe way. A key requirement in doing so are assessments of risks to people’s safety, including in relation to premises and equipment. Providers will be familiar with this requirement and most are diligent in meeting it. Following this recent sad event, we would like to remind providers to include specific potential hazards relating to the use of fixed furniture in your continuous assessments of environmental risks, in both care homes and care at home services. Most fixed furniture is perfectly safe but may be positioned in such a way as to present avoidable hazards for some people in some circumstances. More information on risk assessment in care settings can be found on the Health and Safety Executive website.

25 September 2019- StatLock  Usage

Hayley Clayton from the continence team at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust attended the September Partners in Care Meeting, and updated that use of StatLocks in the hospital have resumed. These need to be changed weekly, and can be prescribed in packs of 5. It is planned for training in their use to be delivered for all care homes and domiciliary providers, but in the meantime please find a guide to their use through this link.

09 September 2019- React To Resources

In addition to the React to Red and React to Falls training offered by the CCG, NHS England and Improvement have introduced a series of further free training resources specifically aimed at supporting the care sector. This includes the newly launched React to Infection which covers how to identify, manage and prevent flu and norovirus. The pack for this programme contains information on managing outbreaks, standard precautions and includes a short video to use in your training sessions. Other training resources available include React to Moisture, React to Feet and React to Malnutrition and Dehydration For more information on the resources please follow this link.

09 September 2019- Infection Prevention Control Bulletins: Norovirus

With flu season approaching, IPC have created a bulletin for care homes and for domiciliary providers. These contain a series of guidance around how to stop the spread of infection, as well as steps to take if you or your staff show symptoms of norovirus.

04 September 2019- React to Red Nominated for Health Service Journal Patient Safety Award 2019

The CCG are delighted to announce that the React to Red programme has been shortlisted for a Health Service Journal Patient Safety Award. The programme delivers face to face training on pressure ulcer prevention, which thanks to the unwavering determination of care home staff to keep their residents safe from harm has seen a 75% reduction in pressure ulcers reported by participating Vale of York care homes. The Quality and Nursing team will present to a panel of judges in September before winners are announced at a ceremony in November. This follows another shortlisting for the scheme in the Nursing Times Awards in the “Care for Older People” category, judging for which will also take place in September with winners announced in October. Thank you to all the hard working care staff in our area for their contribution to these nominations.

20 August 2019- Stop and Watch Tool: Congratulations Hilltop Manor

Following training on how to use the Stop and Watch tool which helps recognition and responding to deterioration in residents , Hilltop Manor have been using the tool with good effect since December. The tool has supported their care decisions and helped communication with other health professionals including residents GPs, and they have put in place processes to improve handover and communication across the team. Congratulations to Alison and the team at Hilltop.

06 August 2019- End of Life Care Strategy 2019-2024

In conjunction with our partners involved in end of life care across the Vale of York, the CCG has developed and published a strategy with the aim of ensuring all those at the end of life receive tailored and co-ordinated care. The aims of the strategy have been guided by feedback from local communities and stakeholders, including a session at Partners in Care in September 2018. These aims are:

  • Each person is seen as an individual
  • Each person gets fair access to care
  • Maximising comfort and wellbeing
  • Care is coordinated
  • All staff are prepared to care
  • Each community is prepared to help

A citizens charter has been created, setting out for members of the public what they can expect from end of life care in Vale of York in a brief, easy to read document.  To access both the strategy, charter and for further information please follow this link.

23 July 2019- Audiology in Care Homes

Emily Wilson from the audiology team at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust attended Partners in Care to give an update on how care homes can assist residents to get the maximum benefit from their hearing aids. Tips included:

• Using the coloured spots to distinguish between right (red) and left (blue)

• Battery life of hearing aids generally varies between 5 and 7 days.

• Hearing aids can be cleaned with non-corrosive wipes, and open fit hearing aids can be cleaned with a pipecleaner if unscrewed.

• A service for a hearing aid is recommended every 6 months.

Further details of the discussion can be found in the minutes from the meeting. Emily also brought a draft care plan to the meeting that can be completed by an audiologist for a resident and used upon admission to a hospital ward or discharge to a care home. If you have any feedback around this form or any queries on audiology please contact

17 July 2019- July Partners in Care Forum

A big thank you to all those partners who joined us in Easingwold for the July meeting of Partners in Care. The group welcomed Emily Wilson from the Audiology Team at York Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who gave an interactive presentation on how to ensure residents are getting the maximum benefit from their hearing aids. The presentation which included guidance on battery life, cleaning and servicing can be found in the slide pack from the meeting.

There were also updates about how to open your home to nurse mentor placements, how to get involved in the React to Falls Prevention Programme, use of creams and fentanyl patches and the introduction of contracts between providers and continuing healthcare.

The minutes and slides from the meeting are available through this link, along with resources from previous meetings and dates of upcoming meetings.

17 July 2019- Trans-Dermal Patches Tracker

Following the discussion around patches at last week’s Partners in Care, St Leonards Hospice have shared a tracker which they use to monitor the use of patches. The tracker can be accessed through this link and is used to record the below information:

• That the patch is in the location where it was applied

• Signature of staff to say they have checked that it is the kind of patch, correct dose and in correct position. ( At the Hospice this is carried out twice a day, usually at some time during the early shift and then repeated on the late shift. A Registered Nurse is usually the person who signs the chart as they usually carry out the checks as part of the medication round) 

08 July 2019- Dispensing Creams Update

It has been brought to the attention of the CCG there have been some instances where topical preparations such as creams and ointments supplied via the District Nurse team do not have labels or directions meaning care staff do not have the information needed to apply them.

 The District Nursing (DN) teams obtain dressings and some topical preparations through a supplier called ONPOS to give to people directly instead of needing a prescription. This means supply of these items is quicker and more direct to support care for the person. However, this also means there is no dispensing label and the directions on how much to apply, where to apply the preparation and how often it should be applied need to be given in another way for care providers.

 Following on from this issue being raised, we have had conversations with the DN team leaders who have advised that care plans should be provided by the DNs and these should state how and where the preparation should be applied. The DN team leaders have been asked to remind all DNs to ensure they are leaving copies of care plans and if there are creams/ointments left to ensure the directions are clear.

 The details provided can be used by the care provider to prepare entries on the MAR chart and/or supplementary information for creams/ointments such as a TMAR. A blank supplementary information form is attached to this email which can be used if wished to record the information. A copy of the DNs care plan should be kept with the person’s MAR chart or in their care records at the home.

 Staff can write the person’s name on the packaging in order to identify it as belonging it to that person if necessary. The date of opening should be recorded on the packaging for creams or ointments with a short shelf life once opened.

 Going forward, if there are instances where DNs are not leaving care plans with directions, could these please be reported to with as many specific details as possible, such as the person’s details, the date of the visit, name of DN and name of care home. With these details we can feedback to the DN team leaders to improve the system as a whole

11 June 2019 - Getting Informed, Getting Prepared

The Social Policy Research Unit at the University of York have developed Getting Informed, Getting Prepared. This is a website features videos and guidance for those looking fund their own their or the care of others, including animations on who to talk around meeting the cost of care and looking for care.

To access the website please follow this link

11 June 2019 - Innov-age Magazine

Innov-age is a free magazine developed to raise awareness and share best practice surrounding the care of older people. The most recent issue was devoted to medicines optimisation, and previous issues have been based around frailty, digital health, wound care and respiratory health. Further information and to view the June issue please follow this link.

03 June 2019- Thank you to Our Partners in Care

Thank you to those that attended the Partners in Care meeting on Thursday 23 May, it was fantastic to see so many representatives from partners across the Vale of York engaging in such positive and collaborative discussion. In total a fantastic 30 colleagues from 20 different organisations and 10 care providers joined us in Riccall. The meeting heard:

  • Updates on the upcoming large scale transformation of the District Nursing Team
  • Planned introduction of contracts between care providers and Continuing Healthcare.
  • Wide ranging discussion around hospital discharge
  • Draft work on the hospital passport

The minutes of the meeting and slide packs presented at the meeting are available through this link, as are dates of future meetings.

03 June 2019-  Dementia Awareness Week 2019

The Social Care Institute for Excellence has designed an e-learning course to raise awareness of dementia among care staff. The course counts towards Tier 1 of the National Dementia Training Standards.

This video from the Alzheimer’s Society may also be useful.

03 June 2019 - Norovirus, hand hygiene and the ageing bowel

Caroline Gent from the Infection Prevention and Control Team gave May's Partners in Care an update on the number of norovirus outbreaks in 2018-19 and how these had affected care homes in our area.  Read more about this in the slide packs from the meeting. Take a look at this useful video and read about system guidance for viral respiratory conditions and viral gastroenteritis.

7 May 2019 - Transporting Patients in Slings

Yorkshire Ambulance Service have informed the CCG of a serious incident involving a patient being injured by slipping from a wheelchair whilst travelling in a hoist sling. One of the areas of learning identified was that the sling had contributed to the patient slipping from the wheelchair. The main recommendation from the report was that patients should no longer be transported in hoist slings, and that was to continue with this practice was un safe.

Available through these links is the letter and poster that has been distributed to the care and nursing homes that YAS collect patients from. If there is a specific medical or clinical need that the patient still needs to travel in a hoist sling then a specific risk assessment at the point of booking can be arranged. This can take up to 72 hours to complete.    


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