New Covid-19 palliative care guidance – 3 April

Two new Covid-19 Guidelines have been added to the Scottish Palliative Care Guidelines. The new guidelines are for symptom management for when a person is imminently dying from Covid-19 and for supporting end of life care when alternatives to medication normally given through syringe pumps are required. The standard end of life care guidelines should be used for all other situations.

Further guidance related to Covid-19 is also now available on the Guidelines website and includes:

• Anticipatory Care Planning guidance
• Communications guide
• Practical resources to help professionals giving medicines
• Signposts to support members of the public through serious illness death and loss
• Support for professionals themselves

Revised PPE guidance now available – 2 April

A revised PPE guidance has been issued jointly by the Department of Health and Social Care, Health Protection Scotland (HPS), Public Health Agency Northern Ireland, Public Health England (PHE) and NHS England. 

This guidance outlines what PPE frontline health and social care workers should be wearing in different settings and scenarios. Please see below for letter issued to Scottish Care with further information on this guidance. 

CNO CMO letter PPE guidance COVID-19 - 2 April 2020

Health Protection Scotland has also published posters for use by social, community and residential settings. 

Updated Guidance from Health Protection Scotland – 2 April

The following guidance on COVID-19: Information and Guidance for Social or Community Care & Residential Settings was updated on the 2nd April 2020 by Health Protection Scotland. it is now Version 1.6.

This now includes updated information and guidance for PPE. This guidance is to support those workingin social or community care and residential (SCCR) settings to give advice to their staff and users of their services about Covid-19.


Police Scotland update on travelling during Covid-19

Scottish Care has received the following update from Police Scotland on workers travelling during Covid-19.

Further to our conversation, please see the guidance below which we would ask you to signpost to your network of carers.

This Government link explains the rules of social distancing alongside travel restrictions.

As you are aware, new legislation has been introduced in respect of the Government guidelines. At this time, the general public are largely compliant with the restrictions placed upon them and Police Scotland are engaging with the public they come into contact with and explaining the restrictions. Enforcing the legislation by means of a Fixed Penalty Notice, at this time, is not our objective.

You mentioned you had around 122,000 care workers in Scotland and the job they are doing is vitally important. Police Scotland may stop your workers travelling to and from work and we appreciate not every member of your network of carers has official ID. If workers do have ID then by all means encourage them to carry it and if they don’t, please advise them to simply explain to the officers where they work and what care organisation/care home they are travelling to and from.

This is a rapidly changing picture and one that the general population alongside the key workers are adapting to deal with. Please continue to follow UK and Scottish Government guidance alongside NHS and HPS guidance as it gets updated.

Care Home Representatives Call for Urgent Legislation Change for More Staff

An independent group representing the Nation’s care providers, who care and support over 1.2 million vulnerable people across all forms of social care in the UK, have issued an urgent letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnston.

The group, alongside the support of the Independent Health and Care Providers (IHCP), Care England, Scottish Care and Fforwm Gofal Cymru, has outlined the urgent need for more staff to cover the increased demand on their services and cover staff shortages caused by sickness and self‐isolation during the Covid-19 outbreak. 

They request that a clarification is made in legislation that anyone wishing to work in the provision of care including the NHS or any form of Social Care, will be permitted to take up paid employment in the NHS and with social care providers, even if they are currently furloughed in other industries and receiving 80% of their wage.

They have asked that furloughed workers receive their 80% payment AND to work in care and get paid for this at no penalty. Allowing the NHS and social care providers to employ such people with no penalty.

Dr Donald Macaskill, Chief Executive of Scottish Care, a membership organisation that represents over 900 social care organisations in Scotland, delivering residential care, nursing care, day care, home care and housing support services both in the private and voluntary sector ( said:

“The next few days and weeks will be critical in meeting the challenges of the Coronavirus pandemic. Right across Scotland thousands of women and men are leaving their homes every day to go to hospitals, care homes and communities to care for some of our most vulnerable, older and disabled citizens. We need to do everything we can to support them.

We are already facing critical shortages of staff because of the requirement to self-isolate if a family member has or is suspected of having Covid-19. We will face even greater staff shortage in the weeks ahead.”

“During this crisis we are supporting the NHS by helping free up hospital beds for those who will be admitted due to the virus as well as caring for those who have contracted it.

“But we now need more support and urgent action from Government to allow us to recruit more staff to help us during a time when there is a huge increase in demand on our staffing.

“We ask that an amendment is added to allow the NHS and social care providers, in homes or in community, to provide paid employment to staff furloughed from other industries.

“This action would have a significant positive impact on our staffing and our ability to maintain the high level of care we currently provide. It would help us support our existing workforce’s health and wellbeing and provide cover for the inevitable loss of staff to sickness and self‐isolation.

“Our teams across the UK are doing an incredible job under extreme pressure and putting themselves at risk everyday – we want to do everything we can to support them.

Donald concluded: “I, alongside my counterparts in Scotland and the rest of the UK call for an immediate amendment to the legislation to allow us to get on with the important job of staff recruitment to allow the elderly and vulnerable in our society to get the care they deserve.”

ACP for Covid-19

Healthcare Improvement Scotland have been working alongside the Scottish Government to develop Covid-19 specific ACP templates and guidance.

They have published a new resource tool today (31 March 2020) named ‘Essential Anticipatory Care Planning Guidance and Template’. This resource has been developed to help support health and social care staff with ACP conversations and includes specific information relating to Covid-19.