Scottish Care launches initiative to connect people through technology

Scottish Care, today launches the Tech Device Network – an initiative to help connect individuals supported by Scotland’s care services with their loved ones.


With social distancing measures in place and visits to care homes being suspended to protect staff and the elderly, we need to be looking at smart ways to bridge the gap and bring people together.

The idea was started when publicist Jenn Nimmo-Smith, Director of Electric Shores, was concerned about her mum during the coronavirus lockdown. She was able to video call with her mum on an iPad but was aware that not all residents would be able to have face-to-face communication. While social care workers are doing what they can to maintain connections, this initial approach has led to today’s appeal to help ensure that more families and loved ones can stay in contact.

We are looking for

Any device which can be used to enable social connection e.g. through apps and internet connection. This includes tablets, laptops, smart TVs and larger models of smartphones.

Device condition

For security and safety reasons, devices should ideally be in new/unused condition or have been minimally used. Devices should be donated with any required accompaniments e.g. chargers or remotes.

Protecting privacy

To protect people’s privacy, donated devices should be cleared of any personal information/data and protected against malware.

Can I lend rather than donate?

Ideally, we’d be looking for devices to be donated to services at this time. However, we may be able to help with the loaning of devices in certain circumstances – please get in touch with us to discuss this.

Is it safe to donate?

We ask all donors to follow current infection control and hygiene guidance to ensure that donated devices are, as far as possible, clean and safe. We will also liaise with donors and recipients around the safest way to collect or deliver devices.

How will my donation be used?

Any donated device should be used for the sole purpose of improving the wellbeing of individuals receiving support. We will be asking people to use the hashtag #TechConnectsCare on social media to share the ways in which devices are making a difference to their service!


Social care workers are at the front line of protecting the most vulnerable age group right now as health and care services unite to fight coronavirus. They will play a critical role in relieving pressure on hospitals over the weeks ahead. Residents of care homes and people supported in their own homes may feel anxious and the ability to see a familiar face and talk to their loved ones will help alleviate some of the anxiety they will be feeling.

Jenn Nimmo-Smith, said:  “I’m super happy to have partnered with Scottish Care to launch this Tech Device Network. As my Mum is in a care home, now more than ever video calling is going to be our lifeline to connect. My hope is that this will help other families and those with loved ones who they can’t visit given the current Covid-19 pandemic to stay in contact and enable that connection that is so important and vital to our relationships. I’d also like to send my love to all the people going through this just now, you’re not alone and we can get through this together.”

Becca Young, Policy & Research Manager at Scottish Care, said: “The current Covid-19 pandemic is impacting all of our lives in unprecedented ways and making us think differently about how we remain connected to each other whilst physically distanced.  We are delighted to partner with Jenn to launch this Tech Device Network, supporting the wellbeing of our older and vulnerable citizens receiving care here in Scotland through access to technology. Many are likely to be experiencing significantly reduced physical contact and social engagement as a result of the current pandemic and this initiative is a positive way in which we can keep our communities connected.”

If you can help keep families connected during this crisis, join our appeal today.

For more info and to donate a device please go to:


The Good Work Plan – Upcoming Employment Law Changes for April 2020

The Good Work Plan is coming on 6 April 2020 and is set to be the biggest shake-up of employment law in a generation.

Notable changes include:

  • An increase in the holiday pay calculation period;
  • Increased protection for agency workers;
  • A written statement of particulars of employment from day one.

Find out more by clicking here and reading this range of guidance from preferred supplier, Citation.

Brand-new guidance: defining employment status

The issue underpinning the Good Work Plan changes coming into effect in April is that of defining employment status. Citation’s Head of Employment Law, Gillian McAteer, outlines some common misconceptions.

Free guides and resources for Scottish Care Members

Scottish Care members are free-to-access Citation’s most popular relevant resources:

Citation’s complete archive of free guides and resources can be accessed here.

Got any questions or looking for HR & Employment Law support?

Please call 0345 844 1111 to speak to a friendly advisor or leave your details here.

Citation also offers Scottish Care members preferential rates on their HR & Employment Law services including 24/7 advice line, dedicated local consultant, and full documentation – including contracts of employment and templates.

Just let them know you’re a member of Scottish Care when enquiring, using the contact details above.

A reminder from the Care Inspectorate for services to submit their annual return by 14 February

Each year, we ask services to complete an annual return. This gives us important information that helps us plan, inform and carry out our inspections.  We also share some of the information with other organisations, such as the Scottish Social Services Council and the Scottish Government, and we use it to produce several statistical publications that you can view on our website.

Annual returns opened online on Friday 3 January and are closing soon, on Friday 14 February.

The annual return is available for services to complete through our online eForms system. All service types must complete their annual returns electronically. You can access this here:

All services registered before 1 October 2019 must complete an annual return. If your service registered on or after 1 October 2019, you should still try to complete an annual return this year.  Although it’s not mandatory, we will still be able to use any information supplied.  The information you put in will automatically appear in the next annual return and you will then only need to enter any information that has changed.

Remember – even if your service is inactive, you must submit an annual return.

If you have any questions about the annual returns, please read our frequently asked questions here or if you need advice you can call us on 0345 600 9527.

Citation’s Care Community Event – 18 Feb

Citation are running an event for local care providers in partnership with Scottish Care where experts from Citation – Care Business Manager, Mick Feather and HR and business guru, Flora Neville –  will be sharing expert insight and knowledge within the sector, covering a range of topics including:

  • Equality and Diversity – it’s importance in Care Inspectorate reports
  • Relationship-Centred Care
  • Quality Assurance and good governance
  • Top tips to recruit, retain and motivate your employees
  • Keeping everyone safe at all times

Hot brews and snacks will be served from 9.30am so join this event armed with any questions you might have, at the end you’ll also get to take away a expert guide on Excellent Services as a thank you for coming.

To book your place please complete the form here, email [email protected] or call 0141 404 0560.

Kilmarnock Care A5 Invite

Midlife and Menopause Webinar

I’m delighted to inform you that Shiona Johnston (Midlife Menopause Mentor, Dumfries House) has kindly agreed to support my January nursing blog on Workforce Wellbeing – Menopause in the Workplace, by providing a follow up pre-recorded webinar on this subject for employers and staff. If you haven’t read my January blog yet, you can catch it here.

I encourage you to watch this webinar as Shiona offers guidance and tips on managing the signs and symptoms of menopause. You can access the webinar through the button below. The password is: atimeforwellness2020

If you have any questions at all for Shiona, please contact her on [email protected] or through her Facebook (@sjwellnessforwomen) or Instagram (@shionajohnston)

Many thanks


Jacqui Neil 

National Workforce Lead for Nursing, Scottish Care 

Twitter Handle: @TransformNurse

Scottish Care Workforce Focus Group – 4 Feb

I would like to invite you to attend one of our Scottish Care Workforce focus groups that we are holding in February around current issues and challenges facing Managers and Supervisors working within social care.  The feedback that is provided from you, our members, at these focus groups will then form the basis for the next workforce event that we will be having in April, details to follow.

The first focus group is being held in Glasgow on the 4th February 2020 between 10:30am-12:30pm at the St Stephen Renfield Centre, 260 Bath Street, Glasgow, G2 4JP.

Please can anyone interested in attending contact me at [email protected] to book a place.

As always your feedback and assistance is hugely appreciated and will be used to inform our research which will then be compiled into a Scottish Care workforce report for care providers and major stakeholders within the care sector including Scottish and local government to help to drive positive policy changes. 

We will also be asking care providers to share their own stories of working as Managers and Supervisors in social care and the many demands and challenges that are currently being faced.  I would ask where possible Managers of services bring Supervisors and Team Leaders with them to this focus group so that we are hearing directly from front line workers.


Caroline Deane

Workforce Policy & Practice Lead

Making policy: exploring care work and poverty

**Register via Eventbrite here**

The UWS-Oxfam Partnership is inviting a wide range of stakeholders for a discussion about what needs to change in Scotland to ensure we have fair recognition of care work, achieve an equal redistribution of caring responsibility, and ensure the representation of parents and carers in decision-making when it comes to making care policy.

From those working in the paid childcare and health and social care sectors, to parents and unpaid carers of people with additional needs – everyone has a different experience of how important paid and unpaid care work is to our households and communities, but also how it can be undervalued by society and how it can trap people in poverty. The Forum seeks to capture these experiences, in particular from those whose voices are often not heard – members of local grassroots organisations, community groups, health and social care providers, child care providers, and anti-poverty campaigners.

The Policy Forum will focus on the following questions with the intention of informing the UWS-Oxfam Partnership’s research and advocacy agenda. Also, the Partnership hopes that the discussions bring up ideas for collaborative research and advocacy projects between the Partnership and the invited participants and their organisations and communities:

  1. What are the key issues relating to care and work (or care-work) that can mean those with a caring role are at higher risk of poverty?
  2. In relation to these issues, what kinds of evidence drives change?
  3. What research could the UWS-Oxfam Partnership contribute to this topic, in collaboration with participants?
  4. Beyond the evidence: in what other ways can we shift the terms of the debate around care, work and poverty?

The Policy Forum will be highly interactive and participant-led and will be introduced by the following speakers:

Dr Vanesa Fuertes (Researcher at UWS): Vanesa has, in her research on barriers to and disadvantages in the labour market, focused on the impact of care responsibilities on individuals and households, and on the suitability, affordability and availability of care services. She found that both impact on individuals’ current and future finances, careers, and opportunities.

Dr Greig Inglis (Researcher at UWS): Greig has conducted research into the health, wellbeing and post-secondary school expectations of young carers. He used data from the NHSGGC Schools Survey and will discuss the value of secondary analysis of large-scale datasets to generate evidence and argue for policy change.

Rhiannon Sims (Research and Policy Officer, Oxfam Scotland): Rhiannon is leading on Oxfam’s domestic poverty programme in Scotland with its strategic focus on the value of care work. She will share insights from the ‘Four Rs’ approach taken by Oxfam in its international ‘We-Care’ programme and the relevance of this to policy in Scotland.

Dr Hartwig Pautz (Researcher at UWS): Hartwig has conducted research on ‘decent work’ and will address how research evidence was used to lobby the Scottish Government to make changes in policy – also so that people working in the care sector experience higher job quality and so that unpaid carers have the chance to balance their responsibilities with their need for ‘decent work’.

The event is organised by the UWS-Oxfam Partnership. The Partnership brings together academics, the third sector, policy practitioners and other stakeholders to discuss and promote our shared vision of a more equitable, sustainable and socially just Scotland.

**Register via Eventbrite here**

Practical information about the event

This event is free. The Partnership will be able to reimburse travel costs. There will be light lunch provided.

The event takes place in Room P116 in the P Block on the University’s Paisley Campus. The crèche facilities will be in Room G114. Room P116 is best found from the University’s entrance on Storie Street. Room G114 is in the Gardner Building off George Street. Please note – there was no demand for creche places so that they will now not be offered.

Please find a campus map here: Campus map Paisley. P Block can be found on the second page, at the centre of the Campus and near its Storie Street entrance.

The campus is a 10 minute walk from Paisley Gilmour Street station, and a 10 minute walk from Paisley St James station. Paisley Gilmour Street is 10 minute train journey from Glasgow Central; Paisley St James is a 20 minute train journey. There is limited parking around the campus and there is a multi-storey car park on Storie Street. We have reserved some parking spaces on campus for those with mobility needs.

Should you need a parking for duration of the event and/or parking, please indicate this in the registration. Should the event show as fully booked, please contact the local organiser to be added to a waiting list. Due to the format of the event, we can only accommodate a certain number of participants. Local organiser: Dr Hartwig Pautz ([email protected] – 0141 848 3770 – 07913929748)


Healthcare Associated Infection (HCAI) and Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Policy Requirements

Scottish Care has received the letter below from the Scottish Government confirming the  Healthcare Associated Infection (HCAI) and Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) policy requirements.

Some of the elements will only apply to the NHS boards however parts are best practice for the social care sectors such as the application of the NIPCM is best practice and apply the HIIAT scoring of incidents and outbreaks. 

There are also some important links within the document such discussing antimicrobial resistance and the UK five year action plan 2019-2024.  Also the toolkit for managing CPE in Scottish non acute settings. 

There is detail within this DL for the social care sector.

HCAI - DL (2019) 23 - Mandatory HCAI and AMR Policy Requirements - final - December 2019 (002) (002)