Information and best practice for Nottingham city health and social care frontline workers.
The NHS and Social Care Coronavirus Life Assurance Scheme provides financial protection to the families of frontline social care and NHS staff who died from COVID-19 infections contracted in the course of their duties.
The scheme pays a tax-free £60,000 lump sum where individuals worked in high risk settings where direct care was provided to residents and patients.
The scheme closed to new deaths on 31 March 2022, but will remain open until 31 March 2023 to allow claimants time to make outstanding claims. Please make sure the families and dependents of your colleagues, who died in service before the end of March 2022, get the opportunity to make a claim.
Flu vaccination for social care staff directly working with people clinically vulnerable to flu is strongly encouraged. We have developed this guidance to support staff to ensure there is high uptake of the flu vaccine this season. Those eligible for a flu vaccination include all social care workers and social care workers working with children who are clinically vulnerable to flu.
Those eligible for a flu vaccination
All social care workers who are in direct contact with people who receive care and support should get the vaccine, including:
- those working in a registered residential care or nursing home and who are directly involved in the care and support of people
- those working for a registered homecare provider and who are directly involved in the care and support of people
- those working for a voluntary managed hospice provider
- those employed through personal budgets and or personal health budgets, such as personal assistants
Why you should get a flu vaccination
Getting the vaccine will help to protect you, your family, and the people you care for from getting the flu.
For people in at-risk groups, such as those aged 65 or over or with an underlying health condition, flu can be a serious disease and can cause death.
As a social care worker, you will be caring for many people in these at-risk groups. Getting the vaccine will mean you are much less likely to spread the flu to those you care for and will help to protect them and yourself this winter.
Vaccination reduces the spread of flu among staff and people receiving care and support, keeping social care services running and reducing the burden on the NHS during the winter. This is true every year, but it is particularly important this year, as coronavirus (COVID-19) is still in circulation.
How to get a flu vaccination
Your employer can support in ensuring that you receive a flu vaccination. They may do this by arranging for you to be vaccinated at your place of work or by arranging for you to be vaccinated off-site. Your employer can let you know which scheme they are running. If not, please ask them
In instances where an employer can not provide a flu vaccination scheme, you can still receive the flu vaccination free of charge from a GP practice or pharmacy through the complementary NHS scheme if you’re a social care worker employed by a:
- registered residential care or nursing home
- registered homecare organisation
- voluntary managed hospice provider
Or, if you provide social care through direct payments or personal health budgets, there is specific flu vaccination guidance for personal care assistants.
Identification needed to prove you are a social care worker
You do not need to present your ID at your local GP practice or pharmacy. However, we will be advising employers to issue staff with a letter identifying you as a social care worker to make the process as easy as possible for you.
When to get the flu vaccine
The best time to have a flu vaccine is in the autumn, before flu starts to circulate. The majority of vaccines are given from September to the end of November but it is still possible to get a flu vaccination through to the end of January.
There is enough flu vaccine for everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated. If you are eligible and are asked to wait, there is still time to get vaccinated at a later opportunity.
Safety of the flu vaccination
The flu vaccines used in the national NHS programme have a good safety record. The vaccines are thoroughly tested before they are made available in England.
You may have a mild fever and aching muscles a few days after having the vaccine and your arm may be sore at the injection site. Further information is available on possible side effects.
Those who shouldn’t get a flu vaccination
Most adults can have the injected flu vaccine, but you should avoid it if you have had a serious allergic reaction to a flu vaccine in the past. If you are uncertain whether you should avoid it due to a medical condition, you should speak to your GP.
You may be at risk of an allergic reaction to the flu vaccine injection if you have an egg allergy. This is because some flu vaccines are made using eggs. Ask a GP or pharmacist for a low-egg or egg-free vaccine.
If you’re ill with a high temperature, it’s best to wait until you’re better before having the flu vaccine.
Effectiveness of the flu vaccine
The flu vaccine is the best protection we have against flu, which can cause serious illness and death in at-risk groups.
Studies have shown that the flu vaccine will help prevent you from getting flu.
Flu is caused by a number of different strains of the flu virus and the vaccine only protects against those that are most likely to cause flu during this year’s flu season. As a result, there’s not a 100% guarantee that you won’t get flu if you’ve been vaccinated.
However, even if you do get flu after being vaccinated, studies have shown that you’re likely to have a much milder and shorter illness.
You cannot catch flu from the flu vaccine because there are no live viruses in the vaccine.
Getting the flu vaccination every year
The strains of flu in circulation change every year, so the protection from the vaccine you had last year will decrease over time.
New flu vaccines are produced every year to protect against the strains most likely to be in circulation, which is why people are advised to be vaccinated every year.
Agreeing to be vaccinated
It’s important that as many health and social care workers as possible get the vaccine – it protects you, your family, and the people you care for from the flu – but if you don’t want to have the vaccine for whatever reason, you don’t have to have it.
Please find some information about a new social care nursing network that is being set up by the Nottingham Alliance Training Hub.
Nursing in social care is such a rewarding career but often people can feel isolated. One of the biggest lessons we learned through Covid19 was that working together and supporting one another is essential. Some of you may have been involved in the National Covid19 WhatsApp support group which won the category, Caring for Older People, in the Nursing Times Awards.
Its success was based on people wanting to work together to achieve.
We want the same opportunities for you as nurses and nursing associate and want to set up a WhatsApp group to help you connect across Nottinghamshire. Setting up a WhatsApp group will:
- Provide you with a support network which you can shape and develop over time.
- Be the first port of call for shared advice.
- Make you aware of any training and development opportunities so you can access them.
If you would like to be added to the ‘Notts Social Care Nurses & NAs’ please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
- NMC pin number
- Mobile number
Please note that we are asking for NMC pin numbers to ensure that those within the group are part of the nursing workforce.
To read the full letter please click here
Please would you all refresh on how to make referrals for Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Safe and Well Visits. As a service we rely on the eyes and ears of out partners who go about their daily business and encounter vulnerable members of the public in their home settings. As we near the relaxation of COVID restrictions we are eager to increase the amount of Safe and Well Visits to help to support and protect our communities.
If you have identified any person who fits any of the CHARLIE profile - please do not hesitate to make an online referral.
As you may know, Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service now use an online referral process for Safe and Well visit requests from our professional partners for residents of Nottinghamshire who are, or maybe, at an increased risk of fire. The Service website now has a separate area for ‘professionals only referrals’ that incorporates our fatal fire CHARLIE matrix: it can be accessed under the staying safe heading on our website.
Please be sure to access the website every time you make a new referral. Any old saved links regularly get updated and therefore may no longer work. In addition to this, please could you submit the referral ensuring that you physically type in the address details rather than copying and pasting the information from another source, as this causes a fault within our system and means we are unable to process the referral.
You will need the following credentials to make the referral:
Agency Code: agency
An e-learning package has been developed to support the completion of the CHARLIE P matrix that can be accessed on the same professional page on our website. We would suggest that you participate in the package to familiarise yourself with ready for making a referral.
This will give further information about risk identification and scoring the matrix.
If you require any further assistance please get in touch with us at:-
- email@example.com or call us on
- Telephone: 0115 967 0880
- Text: 07766 299 999 (hearing impairment)
It is important to us that you have the opportunity to make this referral yourself so we can gain as much risk information as possible. Please do this as soon as possible for any at risk address.
It has been a tough year for Health and Social Care Staff and we have all worked under extreme pressure to protect our patients, service users, colleagues and families. If you are struggling with mental health due to COVID-19 pressures, don’t suffer in silence – Nottinghamshire Staff Support Hub is here for you.
Nottinghamshire Staff Support Hub is open to referrals for all Health and Social Care Staff working in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. The service can be access through the following channels:
On Line Referral: www.nottinghamshirestaffsupport.nhs.uk
Telephone: 0808 196 8886
E mails: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can refer yourself, a colleague (with their consent) or a member of staff in your team who are struggling with their emotional or mental health.
Once contact has been made with the service, our team of qualified NHS mental health professionals will offer free and confidential assessments, with the option to be referred into treatment services when required.
We encourage all line managers to look out for signs and symptoms that their colleagues may need emotional or mental health support – and to promote the offer of the Nottingham Staff Support Hub within their teams.
Vivup – 24/7 Counselling and Support
In addition to Nottinghamshire Staff Support Hub, independent sector staff can also access 24/7 free and confidential advice and counselling through the Vivup Employee Assistance Programme.
Whatever mental health, physical, financial or personal issue you are facing, you can access expert help and support for life’s ups and downs, 24/7, 365 days a year.
Below, you’ll find a wide range of care and support specialists waiting to hear from you. You can use this service as many or as few times as you like, there’s no limit on the support you can receive:
- Telephone Support and Counselling
- Self-Help Workbooks
- Debt Advice
- Parent and Child Relationships
- Domestic Abuse
To access this service simply call 03303 800 658 or freephone from any UK land line or mobile to 0800 023 9324 or visit Vivup EAP
Please find below information put together by Skills for Care about all the funding initiatives available to social care organisations to help them develop and retain staff:
What is the Kickstart Scheme?
The Kickstart Scheme is a £2 billion scheme to create thousands of high-quality 6-month job placements for 16 – 24 year olds.
The scheme is part of the Plan for Jobs and supports young people to develop new skills that will help them move into sustained employment after they have completed their Kickstart Scheme job placement. The scheme provides employers of all sizes, across the private, public and voluntary sectors with the opportunity to access a large pool of young people with potential. On confirmation of the job start the employer will be paid £1,500 per job placement to support overhead costs and help to improve the participant’s employability i.e. on-boarding, mentoring and supervision etc. Funding available for each job will cover the relevant National Minimum Wage rate for 25 hours a week, plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions, and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions.
Applying for the Kickstart Scheme
Here is a link to a guide for employers who are considering applying for Kickstart in their own right. There are no minimum numbers now. Employers can apply for a single Kickstarter if they wish to.
For those employers who would like a Kickstarter but do not want to apply in their own right – they can apply through a Gateway Organisation. You will find a guide to finding a Gateway Organisation here
11th August 2021: EU Settlement Scheme: information for late applicants
The deadline has passed but applications can still be made here.
Since the UK left the EU on 31st December 2020, regulations allowing for the Freedom of Movement no longer apply. EU/EEA and Swiss citizens in the UK must apply to the EU Settlement Scheme for Indefinite Leave to Remain in order to continue to live and work in the UK and to access healthcare and social security benefits. Depending on the length of time an EU national can evidence they have lived in the UK will determine whether Settled Status or Pre-Settled Status is awarded.
Whilst the scheme has received over 5 million applications, there are concerns that some vulnerable groups are under-represented in those applications. Those thought to be at risk of failing to make applications in time are; the elderly or those who have lived in the UK for a very long time, those who lack/have failing mental capacity, those in care settings, young people, looked after children, those suffering Domestic Violence, those already holding permanent residence documents etc.
We are asking all care and support providers to attempt to identify any potential EU nationals within their care and determine if an application to the EU Settlement scheme needs to be made. There is a need to act quickly as the deadline for applying is 30th June 2021.
Information, help and specialist immigration advice can be sought from Nottingham law Centre who have been funded by the Home Office to support vulnerable groups.
The application is very simple, details can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/eligibility
A refreshed package including business active travel package and grant support launched on 10 July. For more information about how the Workplace Travel Service can help to reduce staff travel costs, improve staff health, fitness and wellbeing, reduce local road congestion, AND to save you money, go to
Do you know that removing a condom during sex without consent is rape? Do you know that you need to get consent for sexual activity even if you are in a relationship?
These questions and others are set to be tackled by what is believed to be the country’s first multi-agency approach to consent, sexual violence and abuse.
On the 3rd February the Consent Coalition launched to co-inside with National Sexual Violence Awareness week! The Consent Coalition is made up of many organisations, including specialist sexual violence sector organisations, statutory services and universities.
Together the Consent Coalition is working to:
- Raise awareness of the importance of consent
- Challenge myths about rape and sexual violence
- Encourage survivors to access support and/or make a report, if they choose to do so
Alongside the consent campaign, the Consent Coalition has also created a booklet called Your Journey, which is a guide for survivors of sexual violence on the range of support and reporting options available, whether they choose to report to the Police or not.
Please click here for further information about the Consent Coalition.
Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
FGM is a procedure where the female genitals are deliberately cut, injured or changed without any medical reason. FGM is usually carried out on girls before puberty starts, sometimes before the age of 12 months. FGM is irreversible and very painful, it can be harmful to the health and wellbeing of women and girls. It can also lead to problems with sex, childbirth and menstruation. FGM has no health benefits for the woman.
FGM is a hidden issue which often only comes to light when related health problems occur or the woman is pregnant. It is against the law in the UK, Europe and many African countries to perform or facilitate this procedure. The practice became illegal in the UK in1985 (The Prohibition of Circumcision Act 1985). More recently the Female Genital Mutilation Act (2003) makes it illegal for any residents of the UK to perform or facilitate FGM within or outside the UK. The punishment for violating the 2003 Act carries 14 years imprisonment, a fine or both. FGM is recognised internationally as a violation of the human right of girls and women.
City University London (2015) “Prevalence of Female Genital Mutilation in England and Wales: National and local estimates".
SCIE and NICE have published a leaflet about the use of covert medication in care homes and homecare settings.
Adults should not be given medicines covertly unless they have been assessed as lacking the mental capacity to make decisions about their health or medicines. If they lack capacity to make these decisions and it is assessed as being in their best interests, they may need to be given medicines without their knowledge or consent (e.g. hidden in food or drink).
Care staff need to be aware of the Mental Capacity Act and its Code of Practice and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards to protect both the person and themselves.
To find out further information please click here.