Many of you will have seen the reports of the crowdfunded claim being brought by Dr Cathy Gardner against the UK government in relation to their response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Dr Gardner has sought judicial review of government policy relating to the decision to discharge Covid-19 positive patients to care homes when those already resident in the care homes were vulnerable. She wishes to obtain an explanation of what policies were put in place to ensure a ‘protective ring’ was placed around care homes but as at the time of preparing this article, Dr Gardner is of the view that the response from the government is insufficient.Continue reading “The care sector, Covid-19 and claims: is litigation unavoidable?”
The Department of Health and Social Care has made the decision to deny testing to Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspectors, placing service providers at risk of breaching their requirement to provide a safe care environment.Continue reading “No testing for CQC inspectors: does it risk a breach of the requirement to provide safe care?”
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.Continue reading “New COVID-19 measures announced for care homes in England”
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.Continue reading “Scottish care homes – COVID-19 and human rights”
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.Continue reading “Health Minister announces Adult Safeguarding Bill for Northern Ireland”
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.Continue reading “Government publishes Adult Social Care Winter 2020/21 Plan”