Cornwall Council ASC Quality Assurance Service will be suspending all planned quality assurance monitoring visits to all commissioned services. Instead your QA Officer will contact you over the next week to discuss with you the business continuity plans that you have been asked to submit to the commissioning team. The purpose of this will be to ensure that you have the right systems and processes in place to manage the current situation regarding the Covid-19 virus. The following is information you will need to consider to manage your service in the current climate.
Support for Residential and Nursing Homes during Covid-19
Please see our dedicated Information for Care Homes page where you will find details on:
- National Guidance
- Local support available
- Single point of contact service
- Coronavirus testing
- Webinars and Training
Further information for Care Providers can be found on the Covid-19 Care Providers page.
Managing your service
The following is information you will need to consider to manage your service in the current climate.
We ask that you have in place a plan that as a minimum covers the following;
General Awareness – Does your organisation have a plan in place to ensure that staff are aware of what the Covid-19 virus is. Can identify symptoms in themselves or the people that you care for? Are you up to date with the latest information regarding the virus and actions to take to reduce catching or spreading the virus?
Staffing – Do you have a staff cover plan in place? Have you considered what minimum staffing requirements you need to remain operational? If schools are closed will some of your workforce be unavailable for work, what will you do? If staff have identified as having symptoms and are required to self-isolate what impact will this have on the service and your plan to mitigate risks of non-service delivery?
Service Self -Isolation – If you have decided self-isolate what does this mean in practical terms? Is there a plan in place to manage deliveries of supplies, food and medication? What does this mean for staff working at the service, are there systems in place to manage potential cross-contamination between home and work? In the event of a requirement for tradespersons, GP’s, relatives, District Nurses to access the building, what arrangements are in place to reduce risks of cross-contamination?
Seeking medical assistance – If a service user becomes unwell what arrangements are in place to enable them to access medical assistance? Will the GP visit the service user in their own home (including residential/nursing care home)? If the person is displaying symptoms of the virus do staff know who to contact and by what method?
Isolation of an individual in a Care Home - If an individual is diagnosed as having the virus what care and support arrangements are in place to care for that individual? If the person is unable to be cared for within their own personal space is there a plan as to how the person can access communal areas and not place others at risk? Do staff have access to, and guidance for, the use of Personal Protective Equipment.
Isolation of an individual in their own home – If an individual is diagnosed as having the virus what care and support arrangements are in place to care for that individual? Is there a plan for how staff can support the individual in their home? Do staff have access to, and guidance for, the use of Personal Protective Equipment? If the person lives on their own what staff support may you need to have in place to enable them to access a GP consultation?
Communication Plan - If and when things change is there a communication plan in place to update key stakeholders ie relatives, staff, Council Commissioning Team, Care Quality Commission.
Please send your completed Business Continuity Plan to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you need support in completing your plan please call our dedicated communication channels specifically for Care Providers to contact us about your plans.
Alternatively, you can contact us via the Access Service telephone number – 0300 1234 131 and your query will be redirected to the Quality Assurance Team during office hours.
All Local Authorities must make sure the care and support services it uses are good quality and provide value for money. Section five of the Care Act 2014, also says local authorities must promote the efficient and effective operation of the care and support market overall.
Cornwall Council’s Adult Social Care Quality Assurance and Service Improvement team supports this through the completion and reporting of quality assurance and service improvement (QA) reviews. A QA review is a free advisory and assurance service provided by the council that provides provider management and owners with an objective look at their business. All service providers, whether they are Care Quality Commission (CQC) registered or not, will have a QA review. The team use a risk-based approach to prioritise work across the market and to highlight areas for detailed work at providers.
Provider Performance Monitoring Forms (PPMF)
The Quality Assurance Team receives concerns about services from a variety of sources including professionals, people who use services, members of the public and service providers across all sectors.
All concerns are assessed and appropriate action taken, ranging from logging for future reference to recommendations for de-commissioning a service.
Managing provider quality and performance
The Quality Assurance team work with providers to raise the quality of care across Cornwall. Sometimes, providers need help to maintain care at an appropriate level. The Quality Assurance team, working with others in the Council, will work with the provider to help them improve. Problems may come up that need more formal support and controls put in place to manage placements to a provider to help them fix the identified issues.
The Quality Assurance Team supports the multi-agency safeguarding adults process by working with providers where there are concerns. For more information, or if you have a concern, please see our Safeguarding Adults pages.