This week Sheffield City Council has written to all adult care providers in the city to extend its gratitude to them for everything they have done, and are continuing to do, during the Covid-19 pandemic, and acknowledged ‘that this has been an extremely challenging and distressing time’ for them.
The letters gave an update on the financial position for July, emphasised that the council is here to help all providers and set out how it will be working with them over the next three weeks so that the right support can be given to them from August onwards.
The final advanced payment of the 5% fee rate increase for beds has been paid to all providers and will now end. Providers can still continue to apply for additional money to support any ongoing increased costs. The council will be contacting providers to outline the application process for these payments and using the Infection Prevention Control (IPC) government grant to cover them. 25% of the total grant will be paid to independent sector providers across all sectors; the other 75% was required to go straight to care homes in the city.
The council highlighted the range of support and help that it is still providing including PPE support and emergency supplies when needed, help with staffing, virtual forums, regular phone calls from council managers, a dedicated monitored ‘providercovid19’ inbox, email updates and a Coronavirus – Support for Adult Social Care providers’ webpage.
Work with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) will begin again soon to make sure that the council effectively manages risk and supports providers and staff to focus on providing safe, effective, good quality services.
The council will work with providers to gather their feedback on the particular issues that they face and expect to continue to experience over the next 4 months. A number of ‘virtual forums’ are planned and providers can help with this by completing a questionnaire about how the council can best support them.
George Lindars-Hammond, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care at Sheffield City Council said: “We know that care homes are under a lot of pressure and I would like to thank them for their continued hard work. I know that it’s a very stressful and difficult time.
Our reasons for writing to them this week were two-fold: firstly to provide an update on funding and secondly to stress that we will be continuing to work very closely with them to provide the right support over the next few weeks.
“We are regularly releasing information in short statements at www.sheffieldnewsroom.co.uk as an open reassurance to residents, their families, those who work in care homes and those who provide care. We want them to clearly see that we are working as supportively and effectively as we can, in collaboration with them, so that they can provide the best possible care.
“I would reiterate that we are just a phone call or email away – if care homes or care providers have any questions or queries, please just get in touch and we’ll help.”