Important Guidance on Obligatory Vaccinations for all CQC Registered Services

From 1st April 2022, individuals undertaking CQC regulated activities in England (including secondary and primary care) must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19, regardless of their employer.

On 11th November it became obligatory for all people that work in a care home in any capacity, to be double vaccinated against Covid-19. This same obligation is also being placed on any organisation with a CQC registered service or any with a patient/client facing workforce operating as part of a CQC-regulated service. From 1st April 2022, individuals undertaking CQC regulated activities in England must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19, regardless of their employer, including secondary and primary care. Find out more below, including who this regulation applies to and next steps you can take.

On 11th November, it became obligatory for all people that work in a care home in any capacity, to be double vaccinated against Covid-19. That meant that care homes had to dismiss (or redeploy out of the service) any of their staff and volunteers who had not been vaccinated by that date. In order to do this, they needed to prepare, both in terms of gathering the appropriate data on their workforce and also thinking about the process they needed to go though with any staff that were not double vaccinated by the deadline.

The New Regulation

This same obligation is now also placed on any organisation with a CQC registered service or any with a patient/client facing workforce operating as part of a CQC-regulated service. From 1st April 2022 individuals undertaking CQC regulated activities in England must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, regardless of their employer, including secondary and primary care.

The government regulations are expected to come into effect from 1 April 2022, subject to parliamentary process. This means that unvaccinated individuals will need to have had their first dose by 3 February 2022, in order to have received their second dose by the 1 April 2022 deadline.

We know from the implementation of this new regulation in the care home sector that not every single volunteer and staff member will have been vaccinated by the deadline. Some people may refuse the vaccine for health reasons or other reasons personal to themselves. It is very likely that mandatory vaccinations in care services will put some people off coming into or staying in the care sector for their employment.

The overriding risk therefore is that this new regulation will increase the number of staff vacancies and make it more difficult to recruit to care services.

Who does the regulation apply to?

The new regulation applies to any person who works in a client or patient-facing role in any CQC-regulated service, even if their employer is not the regulated provider. It also applies to volunteers in similar roles. People in office-based roles who do not come into contact with service users would not fall under this regulation.

So, for example: an administrator in an office working in a Home Care team who does not see service users in their homes would not require double vaccinations, but a Foot Care Assistant in a regulated home-visiting foot care service, or a volunteer driver in a Hospital Discharge service would fall under this regulation.

Next Steps

We know that one-to-one conversations have been the most effective way to support colleagues to make an informed choice, often leading to vaccination uptake. Therefore, it is important for line managers to arrange and have supportive one-to-one conversations with unvaccinated staff members to identify reasons for vaccine hesitancy and provide information that will support them to make an informed decision about the vaccine.

You can find Covid-19 vaccine communication materials from the NHS here. Organisations should encourage individuals who have not yet been vaccinated to use the resources available and discuss with their own GP or trusted healthcare professional if they wish to have a further conversation or have any questions around vaccination.

It is important that these conversations with staff are supportive and empathetic, rather than coercive. It is also useful to try to make it as simple as possible for staff and volunteers to get the vaccine, for example by allowing time in work for them to do this if necessary, or giving them the locations of the nearest vaccine centres.

It is important that organisations gather the relevant intelligence on their workforce through these conversations – ask staff and volunteers to share with you their vaccine status and to demonstrate this with their vaccine passports, cards or letters. Record which staff have been vaccinated and which will get vaccinated.

Ensure that the deadlines will be met: for a first vaccination, the deadline is 3rd February 2022. For someone awaiting their second vaccination, this could be any time up to 31st March 2022.

It is vital therefore to record details of those staff and volunteers who intend to decline having a vaccination and the reasons why. Unless they are exempt, or later change their mind (it is worth having more than one conversation with colleagues in this position just in case) you will need to be clear with them what your procedure will be from an employment point of view when the deadline passes. Will you be able to redeploy these staff and volunteers to another, non-regulated service? Or, will you need to dismiss them on 1st April? The conversations you have with staff will need to make the consequences clear. Ensure you have sought HR advice on the dismissal process and what letters and other communication will be required for those staff.

Organisations need to start acting now to gather appropriate data and consider the actions required of them and their staff by 1st April 2022.

Contact

If you have any questions about this guidance, please contact: stuart.prince@ageuk.org.uk

Healthy Ageing and the LGBTQ+ Divide – Virtual Conference 2021

Opening Doors are hosting a virtual conference “Healthy Ageing and the LGBTQ+ Divide” on Wednesday 1st December from 11am-1pm. Find out full details, including how to book your place.

Opening Doors’ latest research, and that of their partners, informs the Pride in Care quality standard and other training that they offer to health and social care services throughout the UK. To help further the impact of this research, recent findings will be presented at their virtual conference, Healthy Ageing and the LGBTQ+ Divide: Virtual Conference 2021 on World Aids Day (1 December from 11am – 1pm), with presentations from Dr. Michael Brady (LGBT Health Advisor to the Government), Marc Thompson (The Love Tank, Team Prepster), Helen Belcher (TransActual UK) and more.

All attendees will receive the Opening Doors LGBTQ+ 50+ Health and Wellbeing Survey Report 2021 and links to the speakers’ research presentations.


Opening Doors would love to see you there! Alternatively, if this might be of interest to others you know, you can share some info about it by clicking: FacebookTwitter or Instagram.

Upcoming Webinar – Voluntary sector partnerships and Integrated Care Systems

Find out full details of the upcoming SCIE webinar “Voluntary sector partnerships and Integrated Care Systems” on Tuesday 30th November.

The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) is hosting a webinar on Tuesday 30th November 12:00pm – 1.25pm, covering the topic “Voluntary sector partnerships and Integrated Care Systems”. Click here to book your place or read on for further details.

This webinar will explore the importance of the voluntary, community and social enterprise VCSE sector contribution in shaping, improving and delivering services, and developing and implementing plans to tackle the wider determinants of health. It will look at how to effectively include this diverse and creative sector in emergent ICB structures and models. 

The webinar shares learning from systems, and asks:

  • How Integrated Care Boards ICBs can engage and embed the VCSE sector in system level governance and decision making arrangements.
  • How to build on the involvement of VCSE partners in forums at place and neighbourhood level.
  • And also examines how to ensure the VCSE sector can be supported to remain resilient and effective as part of a wider system

Voluntary sector partnerships: the vital cornerstone of integrated care systems

Chair:

Neil Tester, Director at the Richmond Group of Charities

Speakers: 

  • Frances Newell, Head of Partnership Development, Leadership and Partnerships team, NHS England and NHS Improvement
  • Maddy Desforges, CEO, NAVCA
  • Susannah Howard, Programme Director, Suffolk and North East Essex ICS
  • Sally Chandler, Chief Executive, Carers Trust Hillingdon
  • Stewart Lucas, System Lead for VCSE Integration (Mental Health), Manchester Mind

Click here to book your place

Age UK’s Response to the Spending Review and #SocialCareCantWait Update

An update on the #SocialCareCan’tWait campaign following the government’s Comprehensive Spending Review, including a statement from Age UK’s Charity Director Caroline Abrahams.

The Age UK #SocialCareCantWait campaign has been building up to the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review, which was delivered by the Chancellor on 27th October. With the support of our campaigners and the hard work of local partners across the country, we were calling on the Government to deliver immediate and substantial funding for local councils and their social care budgets. Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director of Age UK and Co-Chair of the Care and Support Alliance, has issued a statement in response to the budget which can be seen below.

While we wait for the Government to deliver its promised white paper on social care reform, we will be planning how we progress with our campaign and how we can best make an impact. We would like to thank all local partners for their continued support of our national campaigns and we look forward to continuing this vital work with you. If you have time, you can help to spread our message by retweeting the Age UK Campaigns account.

You can read Age UK’s statement below:

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director of Age UK and Co-Chair of the Care and Support Alliance said:

“Today, social care needed a big injection of guaranteed, additional funding for now and the future, but the Chancellor didn’t deliver it. The extra money that was announced for local government was not ring-fenced for social care and will need to be stretched thinly across council services, after a decade of under-funding.”

“The end result is that there is no relief in sight for older and disabled people who require care, and their families and carers, who are having to put up with services under extreme duress – if they can get any help at all.”

“It’s no good the Government promising the possibility of more funding for care in a few years’ time if today’s provision continues to disintegrate and more workers walk away.

“If the Prime Minister’s ambition to ‘fix social care’ is ever to be realised Rishi Sunak has to play his part by providing enough funding to make it happen. He hasn’t done so and therefore unfortunately, the future of social care remains as uncertain as ever, with the credibility of the Prime Minister’s promise increasingly on the line.”

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director, Age UK

You can find Age UK’s response to all parts of the Budget relating to older people, including energy, healthcare and pensions below:

Social Care Can’t Wait Campaign – Help get the Chancellor’s attention before the Spending Review!

As the Spending Review on 27th October approaches, find out how we can focus the Chancellor’s attention on providing sufficient funding for councils’ social care budgets.

Last month we wrote to tell you about the latest stage of our campaign for social care reforms. We’re calling on the Chancellor to provide sufficient funding for councils’ social care budgets in the Spending Review on 27th October, so older people can get the care they need now. We would like to say a huge thank you to those who have supported the campaign so far, and we would be so grateful if you could all join us in a final push in the lead up to the spending review in two weeks’ time. You can take part by writing to your local paper and by posting about the petition on social media – some template wording can be found below.

Our campaigners have asked Rishi Sunak to be a social care hero and we’ve heard that the Chancellor and his team have noticed the campaign. But there’s still work to be done to show the Chancellor how urgent this is.

Campaigners calling on the Chancellor to be a social care hero

Here is how your Age UK can get involved:

If you have 5 minutes… Please share our petition on Social Media:

If you have time to spread the word on your social media channels there is some suggested wording below. You can also find an image for the posts and more social media templates in the Care Can’t Wait pack.

Twitter:

Help us get the Chancellor’s attention and share the petition with your followers. You can follow along to see what other people have been saying here.

Millions of older people need @RishiSunak to be a social care hero. Sign our petition and tell the Chancellor to give care the funding it needs: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK

#SocialCareCantWait


‘Without immediate funding, the PM’s #socialcare plan will fail to fix care.

Now it’s up to @RishiSunak to show older people he cares and boost council budgets in the Spending Review.

Join our call on the Chancellor: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK

#SocialCareCantWait #DoesRishiReallyCare


Facebook:

“For people like Mum, it’s too late. She’s given everything she’s got”.

Sharon just wants the best support for her mum. But the current Government proposals do nothing to help her. She can’t wait until 2023.

Tell Rishi Sunak to help people who need care now. Sign our petition here: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK


If you have 30 minutes… Please Send a letter to the editor:

Use our template letter to the editor, to get coverage in your local paper. Many MPs read their local paper and the more we can promote the issue of funding for social care in local discourse the more pressure MPs will put on the Chancellor.


Thank you for your support!

Everything detailed in this pack can be found in the ‘Care Can’t Wait’ folder in The Box.

Press Release: Council Tax would have to rise by an average 10% next year to allow social care just to ‘stand still’

View the latest press release from Age UK, which urges Chancellor Rishi Sunak to support social care through central government spending, not council tax.

This latest press release from Age UK reveals that Council Tax would have to rise by an average 10% next year to allow social care just to ‘stand still’. As a result, Age UK is urging the Chancellor to give social care the funding it desperately needs in his Spending Review – but from central Government coffers, not Council Tax. You can read the full press release on the Age UK website here.

Free awareness talks from Bowel Cancer UK

Bowel Cancer UK host free online bowel cancer awareness talks, to help organisations to support those they work with. Find out how to book a presentation for your organisation.

Bowel Cancer UK provide free online bowel cancer awareness talks to workplaces and community groups across the UK. As 90+ percent of bowel cancers occur in those who are over 50 (yet are treatable and curable when caught early) the organisation would like to invite all members of the Age UK Network to book one of their 30-minute virtual presentations to highlight signs, symptoms, and risks for older people. Find out all about the talks, including how to book your place at a presentation, below.

Bowel cancer is currently the fourth most common cancer in England and the second biggest cancer killer. Over 34,000 people in England are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year, and over 13,500 people die annually from the disease.

However, it doesn’t have to be this way, as bowel cancer is treatable and curable, especially when caught early. That’s why Bowel Cancer UK are dedicated to raising awareness through our volunteer-led awareness talks.

What will be in the talk?

Our volunteers will deliver a 30-minute virtual presentation and highlight the following key awareness messages:

  • Signs and symptoms – learn the most common symptoms of bowel cancer
  • Risks – gain an awareness of the risk factors associated with bowel cancer
  • Bowel Screening – learn about the NHS bowel screening programme and the importance of taking part

Our volunteers will also be happy to answer any questions you might have. Very often, they have had personal experience of bowel cancer, and therefore have a great deal of knowledge and wisdom to share.

We really do rely on the support of workplaces and community groups to help us raise awareness of this common, yet curable, cancer.

Trial support for carers who don’t speak English

UCL are applying for additional funding to translate, adapt and test iSupport in at least one other language in the UK. Find out how you can take part.

University College London (UCL) are currently delivering a trial evaluating the effectiveness of the World Health Organisation iSupport intervention for family caregivers of people with dementia. However, the intervention is only currently available for people who speak English, meaning that many do not have access. UCL are applying for additional funding to translate, adapt and test iSupport in at least one other language in the UK – probably Punjabi, though this will be driven by those available to work with UCL on this. If your local Age UK has links to groups of local carers who do not speak English and would like to take part, please contact Aimee Spector as soon as possible at a.spector@ucl.ac.uk. Thank you.

Care Can’t Wait Campaign Pack – How you can get involved

The campaign pack for Age UK’s Care Can’t Wait Campaign is now available! Find out how you can get involved with the campaign.

In September 2021, the Government finally announced plans for social care reform in 2023: a cap on costs, a new means test and a new health and social care tax levy to fund those sectors. While we welcome the Government breaking the deadlock on social care, we are concerned that there is nothing to help older people, carers and care workers who need better support now. Find out all about our Care Can’t Wait campaign below, including how your organisation can get involved.

The Government cannot expect older people to struggle for several more years before they receive help. They have waited long enough. We can change this by pushing the Chancellor to provide councils with significant funding for social care in the Spending review on 27th October.

This funding is required to:

  1. Provide quality and consistent care to older people
  2. Support proper breaks for carers
  3. Help providers afford fair pay for care workers

We successfully highlighted the need for the Prime Minister to keep his promise and bring forward his package of social care reforms, but now we need the Chancellor Rishi Sunak to act and prevent millions of older people and their unpaid carers struggling any longer.

Together, we can show the Chancellor that care can’t wait.

Here is how your Age UK can help:

Read on to find out how your organisation can get involved with the campaign, or click here to find all of the assets listed below in one folder.


If you have 5 minutes… Please Sign and share our petition:
Online:

Share our petition with your followers on Facebook and Twitter: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK

The campaign hashtags are: #DoesRishiReallyCare and #SocialCareCantWait.

You can find an image for the posts and more social media templates in the Care Can’t Wait pack.

Twitter:

‘Millions of older people are in urgent need of support RIGHT NOW. @RishiSunak must show he cares and give social care the funding it needs. Sign our petition and tell the Chancellor #SocialCareCantWait https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK


‘Without immediate funding, the PM’s #socialcare plan will fail to fix care.

Now it’s up to @RishiSunak to show older people he cares and boost council budgets in the Spending Review.

Join our call on the Chancellor: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK

#SocialCareCantWait #DoesRishiReallyCare’


Facebook:

‘The Government can only fix social care if they give local councils the funding they need to deliver quality services. Millions of older people need support now, they can’t wait another 3 years. Tell Rishi Sunak to fund social care properly NOW: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK


“For people like Mum, it’s too late. She’s given everything she’s got”.

Sharon just wants the best support for her mum. But the current Government proposals do nothing to help her. She can’t wait until 2023.

Tell Rishi Sunak to help people who need care now. Sign our petition here: https://campaigns.ageuk.org.uk/page/90013/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=LAUK


Offline:

You can also print and display the poster, which links to the petition, in your offices, services and shops. Encourage as many people as possible to scan the QR code with their smartphone and sign the petition. You can download the poster here.


If you have 30 minutes… Please Send a letter to the editor:

Use our template letter to the editor, to get coverage in your local paper. Many MPs read their local paper and the more we can promote the issue of funding for social care in local discourse the more pressure MPs will put on the Chancellor. 


If you have longer… Please Write to your MP:

Use the points we have highlighted in the ‘Key Messages’ document to write to your MP. Ask them to tell the Chancellor and the Treasury of the urgent need for substantial social care funding in October’s Comprehensive Spending Review.

Do you have a good relationship with your local authority? If so, consider writing jointly with them to your MP to highlight the need for extra funding in local council budgets to fund social care services. We are stronger when our voices are united.

If you would prefer a template letter for your MP, please get in touch with luke.pilot@ageuk.org.uk


Thank you for your support.

Everything detailed in this pack can be found in the ‘Care Can’t Wait’ folder in The Box.

Upcoming Live Longer Better Webinar: “Reducing the need for Health and Social Care”

All Age UKs are invited to attend the next Live Longer Better webinar on Wednesday 6th October at 10am.

All Age UKs are invited to join the next Live Longer Better national webinar titled: “Reducing the need for Health and Social Care – How Live Longer Better can do it!“. The webinar takes place on Wednesday 6th October from 10.00 – 11.30. Read on to find out more, or click here to book your place.

The effects of the Covid pandemic and lockdown have had substantial impact on the health of our older population and there are more people less active than ever before.  The result will be an imminent spike in the need for health and social care which will significantly increase the pressures on our primary, acute healthcare services and social services. For every additional year of healthy life expectancy, estimates show that the need for Health and Social Care can be reduced by £45 million a year.

The Live Longer Better revolution aims to reduce disability, dementia and frailty by enabling older people to become more active, physically and mentally. It is now accelerating its drive to take radical action to reframe, re-enable and re-invigorate a whole systems approach to support our ageing society become more physically active, more independent and fundamentally improve their quality of life.  

The LLB National Events have proved extremely popular – nearly 1,000 delegates attending the last 4 events with cross sector representation including local authorities, Age UK, NHS, Care Homes, Leisure Trusts and various voluntary and community sector partners.  Feedback given by delegates confirmed that the events fully met their expectations.

The Programme will include Public Health England, Centre for Ageing Better and of course Sir Muir Gray.  Further programme details will be circulated nearer the event. 

This Live Longer Better collaboration between Sir Muir Gray, Optimal Ageing Associates and Active Partnerships provides a unique combination of skills and resources, bringing together the cultures of coaching and health.  We look forward to sharing some excellent presentations and speakers around the Live Longer Better work.