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Care group calls for free PPE for adult social care sector

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Leading care group, the Relatives and Residents Association (R&RA), has called for free PPE for the adult social care sector.

In a new report, Public Protection – Who Pays?, the R&RA argues for a renewed, better organised and effective public health response in preparation for a second wave, with centralised purchasing of PPE managed by local public health agencies to ensure effective distribution.

Judy Downey, Chair of Relatives and Residents, (pictured) said: “Being forced to pay and compete for PPE contradicts the basic ethos of public health: to protect everyone in society regardless of status.

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“Discrimination against the care sector in the supply of PPE and testing must stop. As a principle of effective infection control, the public health budget must now pay for the PPE and testing of all staff, residents and users of care regardless of their ownership status. Why should those working in or receiving care services outside the NHS continue to be penalised?”

Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, welcomed the R&RA statement, commenting: “Public health protection for care services must come out of the public purse, in the same way as other communicable disease prevention measures.  Procuring and delivering sufficient PPE to the front line is critical to future management of this pandemic.”

Tags : CoronavirusHealth & Safety
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The author Lee Peart

2 Comments

  1. I feel utterly helpless. My 71 year old husband has Parkinson’s Disease and Dementia an is virtually unable to speak. Occasional words or a sentence were nearly audible when I was able to hold his hand and get close to him. I have visited him everyday and seen him through the window -during Covid- .taking notices that I am unsure if he can even read. From about 6 weeks in to lockdown he began to be more like a shell on a lot of the visits. He has gradually been sleeping more and more – sometimes for two days and not eating or being able to take his meds. He has lost weight and had his swallow checked by video link which has deteriorated so he is now on a mashed soft diet..I used take him food in for tea time and treats to give a link and as a way of communication. It is tricky now.but still trying to come up with stuff..

    Last week after sleeping for two days a Dr. Was called. She didn’t think it was an infection but did blood tests. She said if it wasn’t an infection it was likely to be end of life care. It did turn out to be an infection . A week on he is sleeping more and more. Having been in constant contact with the Parkinsons Team we have discussed his position prior to these last changes. Both the Parkinsons and dementia are deteriorating.He is unlikely to have a long or good quality of life. The care homes are good and kind but have guidelines to follow. They will allow me in at the end of life point ( which could be quite quick or could go on for some months. I think he is unlikely to survive if there is a second wave of Covid ( even without getting Covid). This is very valuable time for us – I just need to be able to go in and be with him even if he is asleep. Communication now is mainly through touch. Our 3 children are in ribbons as they would not even be allowed to say Goodbye. Th E idea that Family ( even just me should be given Carer status and wear PPE is is the solution I would support somthat even if I could see him for 30 minutes in the morning and the evening we could have some proper contact. I know there are moves afoot to get this – but have not heard anything in the news from government, like many people I feel that apart from the way the Care Sector has been treated through all this that the residents with these diseases needs have been forgotten about or are just not relevant. How do I help to make it possible to see people who are towards the end of life but not quite there before it is too late. The devastation of families /partners and husbands and wives will have a devastating effect if they are unable to spend this valuable time with these people before thy die.. in economic terms this could cost mental health services even more problems in the future.

    Thank you

    Anji Allen

    1. Hi Anji,
      The UK government has said it is to announce guidelines for care home visits in England in the coming days.In the meantime, care home operators are seeking to provide outdoor visits in safe settings though I appreciate this many not be an option for you. We will keep people informed of changes to guidance as soon as we hear them.

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