Find the latest information and advice about Coronavirus in West Sussex.
Government guidance to support staff wellbeing - This is for all workers in the social care sector and includes information, advice and tools for employers to support staff. It also includes guidance for individuals to manage their personal mental health and wellbeing.
Mental Health at Work - This website, curated by Mind, includes a series of toolkits to support social care workers, a helpline and other resources.
Coronavirus staff resilience hub - This MindEd resource is designed to help frontline staff to manage their mental health and wellbeing. Topics include:
The LGA has produced a comprehensive pack of wellbeing information and resources to help managers support the wellbeing of staff.
The society has produced a guide for leaders and managers which offers practical advice on supporting staff during difficult phases of working and living through the pandemic.
Mind has a number of resources on their website including Wellness Action Plans (WAPs). These are a simple, practical way of helping staff to support their mental health at work, and for managers to support the mental health of team members. A WAP can be completed by any individual, whether or not they have a mental health problem. It provides practical steps to ensure they are supported when they are not feeling at their best.
A dedicated app for the adult social care workforce in England has been launched by the government, to support staff through COVID-19.
The Care Workforce app is a single digital hub for social care workers to access relevant updates, guidance, support and discounts from their phone.
The app is available for download on Apple and Android supported smartphones, or can be accessed online from any device. You can download the app from Google Play or the Apple App Store.
Building your own resilience, health and wellbeing is a guide for anyone working in adult social care and includes personal strategies and techniques to manage pressure and stress.
Skills for Care operate an advice line to provide managers with support and answers to COVID-19 related questions.
The Skills for Care Facebook group is open to all registered managers and front-line managers in similar roles. It can support people to stay connected with other managers, share advice, experiences and guidance.
A local WhatsApp group for managers has also been set up by Karen Stevens (Skills for Care Locality Manager - London and South East) to enable managers to share information, ideas and resources with each other. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Keeping staff motivated can be a challenge during the COVID-19 situation and Skills for Care have put together a webinar to support providers.
Sussex Mental Healthline (0300 5000 101) offers crisis care for people in urgent need of help who are experiencing mental health problems including stress, anxiety and depression. It is also available to carers and healthcare professionals.
The Healthline operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and no appointment is needed.
The Queens Nursing Institute has launched a new listening service for registered nurses.
The service is available to all nurses working in the community and social care.
Hospice UK has launched an Adult Social Care Bereavement and Trauma line, which can be accessed by phone on 0300 303 4434.
Specialist counsellors are available between 8am and 8pm to support people who have experienced a bereavement, witnessed traumatic deaths as part of their work, or to discuss any other anxiety or emotional issues experienced as a result of COVID-19.
AtaLoss.org has developed information and advice to support people who are bereaved during COVID-19. This includes ideas to help people feel less alone, how to help someone who has been bereaved, advice on funerals and memorials, supporting children, and useful contacts.
There are a number of useful bereavement resources for social care workers available on the gov.uk website.
The Department of Health and Social Care has issued guidance for local authorities and social care providers on steps to take following the death of a person who worked in adult social care in England. The guidance covers employees and volunteers
The Department of Health and Social Care has issued a letter regarding COVID-19 related death of employees and volunteers in the adult social care sector.
The government has established a Life Assurance Scheme for staff performing vital frontline NHS or social care work during COVID-19.
In the event of a staff member dying due to COVID-19 a lump sum payment of £60,000 will be made to their estate, if they meet the qualifying work-related criteria for the scheme. The scheme is non-contributory, meaning there is no cost to staff or employers.
For the latest information on school closures and plans for the phased return of pupils, visit the West Sussex County Council website.
The West Sussex County Council website has information on local services that support people who are being abused.
Online discount services are available to staff within the NHS and social care.
NHSX and CQC have been working together to identify and disseminate priority food offers for social care staff. There are offers at retailers including Iceland, Morrisons, and Food to Care.
The Department of Health and Social Care has launched a new online platform for registered care providers seeking new candidates looking to work in social care.
The website also offers candidates access to online training via learning providers endorsed by Skills for Care.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important that the safety and wellbeing of people using social care services remains a priority. Skills for Care has developed a guide about safe and rapid recruitment for all social care employers to help address their additional workforce recruitment challenges at this time.
Proud to Care offers support and guidance to care providers wanting to recruit new staff in West Sussex. The Proud to Care website features a dedicated hub where employers can advertise job vacancies free of charge and access useful resources on recruiting and retaining staff.
There is also a bespoke service offering 1:1 support to any West Sussex care provider who may be struggling with recruitment and retention or who would like to improve interview success and advertising investment.
If you would like to find out more, or book a 1:1 bespoke support session please email the Proud to Care team.
CQC have issued interim guidance on DBS and other recruitment checks . This is for providers recruiting staff and volunteers to health and social care services in response to COVID-19. This has been issued in response to temporary changes being made to DBS applications and processes. It will be in operation while the Coronavirus Act 2020 remains in force. This will be reviewed on a regular basis.
Further government information, including factsheets, updated guidelines and news stories related to DBS and COVID-19 is available online.
When supporting people in their own homes during COVID-19 (such as domiciliary care and supported living providers) staff may wish to consider dividing people who receive care into ‘care groups’ and reducing contact between staff. For more information see government guidance about the provision of home care.
For information about safe staffing in care homes, see government guidance about admission and care of residents during COVID-19.
Safe staffing is also about having enough staff, who have the right values and skills to deliver high quality care and support. Without it, services may struggle to provide people with the safe and effective care they need and deserve.
Skills for Care's safe staffing guide will help you identify the right quantity and quality of staff to meet the needs of your service. It includes tips about deciding how many staff you need to provide a safe service, contingency planning for short-term staff shortages, carrying out the correct and necessary recruitment checks, and how to effectively use bank and agency staff.
If you are struggling to deliver the service safely as a result of diminished or unsafe staffing levels please consider using your business continuity plan to prioritise service delivery and contact the County Council's contracts team, as follows.
phone: 0330 22 25553 (during normal office hours.)
During evenings, weekends and bank holidays please contact the County Council's out of hours service by phone on 0330 2227007
Remember providers are responsible for notifying the CQC.
The Department of Health and Social Care's Coronavirus (Covid-19): Care Home Support Package Guidance strongly recommends that care homes do all they can to restrict staff movement where possible.
Public Health England suggest that this restriction should be extended to agency staff. The guidance includes a checklist of actions that providers of care homes should consider taking if they have not already done so.
West Sussex Community Hub
The West Sussex Community Hub helps to connect people to local volunteers and support that they need. Four support options are currently available depending on the individual’s medical circumstances, location and needs.
Volunteering in Care Homes Toolkit - Although there is no specific guidance for using volunteers in care homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) guide on volunteering may be of interest.
During COVID-19 you will need to ensure that you also take into consideration guidance around infection control and PPE any volunteers require. Please go to the Infection control section for more information.
There are further volunteering resources on the NCVO website.