An additional £250 million is being made available for care home and home care providers to protect them from COVID transmission, the government has announced.
The fund is made up of £142.5 million, which will help with infection control, and £108.8 million to support rapid and regular testing.
The new money will be a continuation of Infection Control and Testing Fund, which was due to run until the end of the month and will now last until the end of September.
Minister for Care, Helen Whately, (pictured) said: “We are keeping up our support for social care through the pandemic. This new funding will help care services continue to protect those they look after and their staff from this cruel virus.
“It brings our total support to social care to £2 billion during the pandemic, along with billions of items of free PPE, over 120 million tests and the prioritisation of social care in the vaccination programme.”
Professor Martin Green, chief executive of Care England, commented: “The extension of the ICF and Testing Fund is very welcome and we applaud the DHSC in securing this extension. The adult social care provider sector has worked extremely hard to continue to protect the people it supports and cares for through extensive infection control and testing procedures. This funding is a recognition of these efforts.
“Care England is happy to work at speed to ensure the successful roll out of the money to the front line where it is most needed and where providers have been anxiously waiting for news.”
Infection control funding aims to help providers keep their staff and the people they support safe. It can be used to ensure staff who are isolating receive their normal wages, minimise movement of staff between services, limit or cohort staff to individual groups of recipients of care and support the recruitment of additional staff if they’re needed to enable staff to work in only one care service.
Testing funding will support providers with the costs associated with ongoing testing in care settings.