In our recent blog, we discussed the government’s latest proposal; a law banning agency and bank staff from moving between different care settings to minimise the spread of COVID-19. According to the proposal, homes can continue to use agency staff but the guidelines on how to do so have changed. Here is an overview of the government’s plan and what you need to consider when using temporary staff in the coming months.
The government’s proposal
In summary, the open consultation revealed plans to introduce a temporary ban that would prevent Care Homes and Nursing Homes from using staff to deliver personal care who had delivered such care in another health or social care setting in the previous 14 days. If staff move settings, there should be a 2-week period in between. Providers would be exempt from the ban in circumstances where they would otherwise have unsafe staffing levels.
To ensure your care home’s staffing requirements are covered, here are some recommendations;
1. Begin by identifying what your needs are for the next few months. What roles and skillsets do you require? Are you expecting an influx of residents? If so, what arrangements will have to be made regarding sufficient PPE levels, rota management, and testing?
2. If you are using a temporary staffing provider block book temporary workers whenever possible or arrange exclusive contracts. Ensure staff is aware of your latest policies and procedures.
3. Ensure temporary staff has access to COVID tests. They should be included in your routine weekly testing.
4. Have robust infection prevention controls in place; follow IPC guidance on the use of PPE, effective hand, and respiratory hygiene.
5. Conduct regular risk assessments and share your findings with the staff.
Remember, safe staffing remains a priority therefore, if you are unable to engage enough staff to cover specific shifts or there are unplanned absences or unforeseen circumstances that prevent staff from attending work, you can find cover using your Agency. In this case, you are eligible to use staff who are being deployed in another care setting. The worker will be required to have a negative COVID-19 result obtained in the previous 7 days for further peace of mind.
reach24 can help meet your staffing needs while keeping your home COVID-secure this winter.
Get peace of mind with our COVID safety measures in compliance with government guidelines:
1. Invite staff exclusively – view, book, and invite staff directly to ensure continuity of care.
2. Block book or form exclusive contracts – these staff will not be able to book shifts at any other homes available on our platform.
3. Staff tested positive will not be able to apply for shifts with you and their test results will be displayed on their profile.
4. Monitor agency usage via our autogenerated digital reports.
To find out more, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 02035002024.
Safety, reliability, and quality are at the heart of everything we do.