Urgent new measures to support care workers on the frontline in the fight against coronavirus have been welcomed by care providers.
The Government has announced new action to help social care as it cares for older and vulnerable people during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Independent Care Group (ICG) said the measures were long-overdue recognition of the vital role social care is playing.
The measures include:
- All care home residents coming back from hospital to be tested before being admitted to the care home
- Priority drops followed by a new online delivery system to supply care homes with PPE
- Supermarkets asked to give the same priority treatment for carers as NHS
- A recruitment drive for care staff with Government-funded induction training.
ICG chair, Mike Padgham said: “Credit where credit is due, these new measures will aid social care in its fight against coronavirus and we wholeheartedly welcome what the Secretary of State has announced.
“The issue of coronavirus testing and getting proper personal protective equipment (PPE) to our frontline staff has been a major issue for us so far and we welcome action at last.
“Up until this point it has felt like social care was playing second fiddle to the NHS whilst in reality care workers and NHS are side by side in our fight to tackle COVID-19.
“It feels like it has been a long time coming but at last social care is getting the recognition it deserves right down to the Secretary of State wearing his Care badge with pride and describing it as a badge of honour.”
Social care currently looks after 400,000 people in care and nursing homes – that is three times the number in NHS hospital beds. It looks after a further 640,000 people in their own homes.