The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has this week written to English local authorities outlining plans to set up specific homes or units for people being discharged from hospital who are COVID-19 positive or are awaiting a test result. The DHSC has asked local authorities to identify suitable settings by the end of this week, with a view to having these facilities fully operational by the end of November.
This plan was hinted at in the Adult Social Care Plan that was published in September 2020, and follows existing requirements for all persons being discharged from hospital to a care home to have a COVID-19 test before discharge, and isolate for 14 days in any case upon admission or re-admission to a care home.
Head of Commercial Litigation, Stuart Evans, discusses insolvency issues facing the care sector in our vlog series. These issues and more will be covered in our future of care provision webinar next week, Wednesday 7 October. You can watch the full video and register for the event here.
Partners Sarah Woodwark and Jane Lang discuss public v independent inquiries in the third episode of our vlog series, which leads to our future of care provision webinar on Wednesday, 7 October at 2pm. You can watch the full video and register for the event here.
On 26 September 2020, the Herald newspaper reported that “moving elderly from Scots hospitals to homes during coronavirus pandemic may have been illegal.” The article focuses on the discharge from hospitals to care homes of “hundreds” of adults lacking in full legal capacity (ability to make relevant decisions). Edinburgh Napier University’s Centre for Mental Health and Capacity Law has expressed concern that since the start of the COVID-19 (C-19) pandemic, movement from hospitals to care homes of adults without capacity may have taken place without due legal process and in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). ECHR rights said to be engaged include the right to personal liberty and security and the right to respect for private and family life. The CRPD aspect concerns equal rights for people with disabilities. Particular issues arising include the extent to which steps were taken to ascertain whether particular adults were capable of expressing a wish and whether family members and any legal guardian were consulted before people were moved.
Laura D’Arcy, Employment Partner, discusses the employment challenges facing the care sector due to COVID-19 in the first episode of our new vlog series, leading to our care webinar on Wednesday 7, October 2020.
On the 10 of September, the Northern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann confirmed his intention to bring forward a new Adult Safeguarding Bill for Northern Ireland, to help protect care home residents and other vulnerable members of society.
This commitment is in response to the first report from an independent review commissioned to examine the health and social care system’s response to care failings at Dunmurry Manor Care Home which had previously been identified.
The government has now published its Winter Plan for Adult Social Care. This detailed document sets out a plan for social care for adults of all ages for the coming months. The Plan applies to England only. It notes that COVID-19 will be circulating at the same time as normal winter flu and viruses, so there is likely to be additional pressure on the health and social care sector. The Plan specifies the role central government will play as well as setting out its expectations for local authorities, NHS organisations and social care providers.
In the face of recent criticism of its response to COVID-19, the CQC has issued a joint statement with the Deputy Chief Inspector for Mental Health Services (MHS) setting out their ongoing approach to the pandemic.
As infection rates rise across the country, the Care Regulator has warned that some hospitals and care homes are failing to take action to protect patients and those in care from Covid-19 and that specific action will be taken going forward, They also urge member of the public to provide feedback.