Care Inspectorate Webinar – 23 March

We are delighted to welcome colleagues from the Care Inspectorate to our next webinar on Thursday 23 March 2023 at 2:00 pm. Mike Andrews,  Service Manager and George McMillian, Team Manager from the Care Inspectorate will be hosting this session.

The Care Inspectorate will discuss using the Quality Frameworks including Key Questions and Quality Indicators for Inspections in 2023/24.  They will further discuss what to expect at an inspection and there will be an opportunity to ask questions.

This session will help you be aware of focus for inspections next year.

Please note that this webinar is on Microsoft Teams instead of Zoom. Registration is required, you will be sent an email invite a day before the session.

Please register via the Members Area.

Technologies for living with dementia

Since beginning the Care Technologist project, the team have picked up from conversations that there can sometimes be a misconception that technologies do not fit into a support plan for people living with dementia. This is suggested partly due to a gap in understanding the variety of ways people and technology can interact together. We are going to de-bunk this today!

To understand the variety of ways technology exists in our lives, it’s important to first look at our perceptions of what technology is and how we interact with it.

So, what is technology?

The Care Technologist team consider technology to be any device, system or tool that has been scientifically designed with the purpose of enabling and supporting practical living. This means that technology doesn’t have to be plugged in, downloaded, signed up for or turned on – as long as it’s designed for assisting or streamlining practical living, it has a technological use. While technology does not have to be for everyone, the team believe that everyone should have the choice to use technology in their daily lives.

What are the ways that technology interacts?

Secondly, the way we interact with technology can differ. There are many devices, systems and tools that require a user – someone to turn it on, sign up, log in, and operate it in order to access the benefits. Some technology requires this only at the beginning of use, others not at all. The latter technology is simply working in the background, supporting practical living just by being there – providing prompts and reminders, sensory support, allowing communication and monitoring safety. This sort of technology can be especially useful for those who don’t want the burden of managing multiple devices, being responsible for charging and updating it, or don’t have the knowledge of how to do these things.

Finally, when considering how technology can support people living with dementia, it’s important to be aware of the varying stages and types of dementia, and how different symptoms can interact or affect technology use. There are over 200 sub-types of dementia which present different challenges, ranging from changes to mobility, cognition, sight and judgement (data from Dementia UK). Some technology will be more suitable for some people than others, but there will always be technology to support people, regardless of the type of dementia they live with.

With this in mind, we’ve compiled a shortlist of technology we are currently working with that supports practical living, that is especially beneficial for supporting people living with forms of dementia.

Kettle Companion

Kettle Companions (a small light-up sphere) can be placed in a loved ones’ home to allow light touch monitoring. A secondary twin device is placed in a family member’s home which will turn to a different colour when their loved one is boiling their kettle, or in the instance the kettle hasn’t boiled by a pre-set time.

Locating tags

Tags are a versatile tracker for keys, bags, phones, remote controls and more. This device works with Bluetooth, can be managed via smartphone app and can pinpoint a lost item on a map. If you have the tile handy, it’s possible to reverse the locator and find the smartphone too.

Hydration reminders

These small devices attach to any water bottle or standard sized glass and blink to remind you to hydrate, can detect when you take a drink. Ideal reminders for those who need a gentle prompt to stay hydrated, but only use a blinking light to do so – therefore not ideal for those with low vision. We’re looking for other hydration reminders that support a wider range of people, so stay tuned!

Companion pet

Robotic pets such as cats are great for homes unable to host animals and have proven to be a therapeutic aid for people living with dementia. The team have seen these pets work wonders for residents in a care home setting and bring lots of joy to those around them!

  • Cat purrs, sleeps, reacts to attention
  • Can be muted while turned on
  • Uses batteries

Universal remote

A simplified TV remote can be a small adjustment to make, but great for improving independence. The remote pairs to any TV, and reduces the button varieties to just the essentials.

  • Large buttons that are easy to press and well-spaced out
  • Ideal for people living with dementia or with low visibility

If you would like to know more about technology that we are using to support people to live well and independently, we have collated a catalogue of technology we are currently using in the Care Technologist project. If you would like to be sent a copy, please email [email protected] and specify if you would like a digital or paper copy.

For more information on technology, dementia and assisted living, we think these links below are worth a look at too:

IRISR Engagement Session – 15 March

The Chair of the Independent Review of Inspection Scrutiny & Regulation (IRISR), Dame Sue Bruce and the Vice Chair, Stuart Currie are hosting a bespoke engagement session for Scottish Care Members. This is scheduled for this Wednesday 15 March, between 1:00 – 2:00 pm.

The Chair and Vice Chair would like to use the session as an opportunity to allow members to share any pertinent information regarding inspection, regulation and scrutiny of social care services.

Please see below for the themes and questions from the stakeholder engagement sessions.

This engagement session will be held on Teams, please register via the  Members Area.

Stakeholder Engagement Themes and Questions

Easy Read – Stakeholder Engagement Themes and Questions

Care at Home & Housing Support Awards 2023 – Deadline Extended!

We have extended the deadline for making a nomination to our annual Care at Home & Housing Support Awards to Friday 17 March 2023.

Nominations need to be completed by this date by close of play. If you haven’t already done so, please take a look at the guidelines and categories to help us celebrate and acknowledge the exceptional skills and commitment of those working in the homecare sector across Scotland.

There are 10 award categories covering organisations, staff and service users:

  • Emerging Talent Award
  • Care Services Coordination/Administration Award
  • Care Learning Award
  • Leadership Award
  • Outstanding Achievement Award
  • Care Worker of the Year
  • Palliative & End of Life Care Practise Award
  • Technology & People Award
  • Provider of the Year
  • Positive Impact Award

Please ensure you read the guidelines before completing your nomination, any submissions that do not follow the guidelines may not be accepted by the judges.

Judging of the awards will be later in March and the Awards Ceremony will be held at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Glasgow following the Conference on Friday 19 May 2023.

Find out more and enter here.

Care at Home & Housing Support Conference 2023 – Early bird tickets now available!

We are delighted to announce that early bird tickets for the Scottish Care 2023 National Homecare Conference & Exhibition are now available until the close of play on 31 March 2023!

Early bird tickets for members are priced at £60+VAT, instead of the standard ticket rates of £70+VAT. Early bird rates for non-members are priced at £105+VAT, and standard non-member rates are £130+VAT.

Join us for this conference on Friday 19 May 2023 at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Argyll Street, Glasgow.

The conference will address key themes including the future of care and ageing, and effective voice. It will also tackle practical challenges facing the sector including the cost of living crisis, sustainability and the future of homecare regulation.

Be part of this unmissable event at such a critical time and book your tickets now. We look forward to welcoming delegates to this conference.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Media statement: ‘If you could invest in one thing, make it the social care workforce’

Scottish Care survey highlights issues linked with resourcing and call monitoring leading to workforce and financial unsustainability for care at home providers.

In January 2023 Scottish Care undertook a survey among its members regarding sustainability within the care at home sector. The survey findings repeated the concerns of independent providers, summarising that management of dwindling resources is unsustainable for the sector. This raises concern on the impact of such conditions on those working in and accessing social care and support, those they support, and the wider health and social care  system. Themes which were also prevalent in the Independent Review of Adult Social Care, including the unanimous statement that ‘if you could invest in one thing, make it the workforce’.

The way that Care at Home support is arranged differs between Local Authorities yet consistent themes of financial and staffing concerns were prevalent. Other contextual factors raised included an increase in the number of procured 15-minute visits by Local Authorities and the impact of punitive bandings attached to electronic monitoring systems.

The survey revealed that over half of respondents had handed back packages of care delivery hours to their local councils due to an insufficiency in funding to cover increased cost of living and staffing costs such as travel. The lack of appropriate and consistent funding made it difficult to recruit and retain staff. One provider specified that their staff were being recruited by the NHS and agencies where they can be paid more than the increasingly insufficient social care rate set by Government. Friday’s announced uplift for the NHS has widened this gap further, with a hospital cleaner now earning more than a qualified and professionally registered care worker.

Electronic call monitoring was also highlighted in the survey as a tool that, when improperly used, contributed to staff dissatisfaction. Whilst providers recognise that electronic call monitoring could be used to evidence care delivery and to support staff safety when working out in the community yet raised that when this tool was improperly used it made it difficult for staff to apply the personal touch needed for quality care due to its focus on time and task-driven delivery. Additionally, it was at times used by councils to ration funding. Furthermore, most respondents highlighted that they have had to reduce visits with longer travel times, as procurement practice in some areas does not consider the time needed to travel between individuals’ homes and does not adequately compensate staff when an appointment is cancelled at late notice.

Overall, survey respondents reiterated their concerns of how insufficient investment coupled with inadequate commissioning and procurement practices are making the social care sector unsustainable. Recruitment and retention remain a top concern with providers explaining that rising service costs and the costs of living which staff face were not being adequately addressed in pay. Incorporating cost-of-living raises into staff contracts and offering a consistent income were seen as credible solutions for most of the surveyed providers. These solutions were suggested to improve staff retention and quality of care, however it would be impossible to implement without an increase in funding from local councils.

The question remains, now 2 years on from the independent review, are we ready to face the true costs of providing care or should we remain on our crisis led journey into the unknown. Scottish Care is calling for an immediate uplift to all social care staff to £12 per hour.

– Ends –

For more information or media requests, please contact: [email protected]

Media Release – Long Term Care: A Call for Action on a Global Scale

 Long Term Care: A Call for Action on a Global Scale

 Critical Issues in Countries Worldwide – Rapidly Aging Global Population, Shrinking Number of Informal Caregivers, and Strained Long-Term Care Systems – Spur Need for New Approach, Say Global Ageing Network Leaders 

Scottish Care, a Global Ageing Network member, Urges Action in Scotland

Tuesday 14 February, 2023, Scotland and Washington, DC – The impact of issues arising from aging populations in countries around the globe, combined with declining numbers of caregivers and  insufficient government support for services older adults need to live with dignity and respect, demands attention, warns a new report from the Global Ageing Network (GAN), an international network of leaders in ageing services, housing, research, technology and design from more than 60 countries.

Action by governments all over the world is needed now, say the report authors, all experts in long term care. The demographics of global aging are driving a need for attention to and prioritization of policies, programs, and infrastructure to ensure access to care and services. Issues including approach to care, funding, workforce development and training, need to be addressed.

In GAN’s “Call to Governments: Ageing and Long-Term Care,” to be released February 14, 2023, authors Jiri Horecky, president of the Association of Social Services, in the Czech Republic, and board chair, GAN; Stuart Kaplan, CEO, Selfhelp Community Services in New York, NY; Dan Levitt, professor and CEO, KinVillage, Delta, British Columbia, Canada; Katie Smith Sloan, executive director, Global Ageing Network; Megan Davies, PhD, University of Basel and Maastricht University; Dr. Freek Lapre, professor, TIAS Business School, Tilburg University, Netherlands; and Donald Macaskill, PhD, CEO, Scottish Care, lay out shared challenges and opportunities facing countries around the globe as populations grow older and people live longer, with at least half of all older adults expected to need of some long-term care services for a period at some point in their lives.

“It’s time to step up. Although the starting point is different for each country, every leader around the globe must address the issue of ensuring that older adults can access the care and services needed to age well,” said Katie Smith Sloan, Executive Director, GAN. “The numbers tell the story: By 2050, one in six people in the world are projected to be age 65 or older. We’ve laid out the issues that must be addressed, the needs of older adults that must be met, and offers a road map of high-level policy actions to consider.”

The impact of COVID-19 on older adults around the globe, and abundant lessons that became apparent from that experience, such as the negative effects of longstanding neglect of infrastructure needed to serve older adults as they age, served as the impetus for GAN’s action, Sloan explains. “Chronic underfunding, understaffing, low prioritization of aging services by governments around the globe revealed how urgently the long-term care sector does need attention, reforms, changes, and support. The sector’s been overlooked and underappreciated – and the collective work of GAN members is needed, now more than ever.”

“As the aging population grows, there are too many challenges to keep doing things the way we have been doing them in the past decades. Informal family caregivers, who, in every country worldwide play a fundamental role in ensuring older adults’ well-being, are struggling with exhaustion, deteriorating quality of life, and loss of income that feed into negative macroeconomic impacts. We cannot leave this to families alone,” said Jiri Horecky, president European Ageing Network and board chair, the Global Ageing Network. “As the numbers of older adults grow, governments will have no choice but to invest in the supports older adults need, to give them agency and to protect their rights, including the right to long-term care.”

Dr Donald Macaskill, CEO of Scottish Care added: “This international report is of real significance to those of us who care about older age in Scotland. It shows that many of the challenges we are facing in Scotland are global in nature but it also suggests that the solutions of a better recognised and rewarded workforce, investment in older age care and support and the innovative use of a human rights based use of technology are ones we need to build on in Scotland and elsewhere.”

Following an overview of long-term care practices in countries around the world, the paper addresses major challenges, from an overreliance on informal caregivers, the growing challenge of dementia onset among older adults and workforce challenges to long-term care infrastructure and policy needs. A roadmap of opportunities, challenges and action are as follows, including sustainable funding models, reshaping long-term care systems; and country-specific needs assessments.

About Global Aging Network

The Global Ageing Network advances ideas and solutions to address global ageing. Through its presence in over 60 countries, the Network serves as a platform for the exchange of best practices, innovations, barriers, and solutions to ensure that all older adults – regardless of geography or circumstance – can age with dignity and respect. This collective purpose, shared among providers, businesses, researchers, advocates, and others, is a powerful force in addressing the many challenges and opportunities associated with global ageing.

Read the Call to Governments – Ageing and Long Term Care Paper here.

Care at Home & Housing Support Awards 2023 – Open for entry!

We are pleased to announce that we are now accepting entries for our Care at Home & Housing Support Awards 2023!

This is the perfect opportunity to recognise the achievements of providers, staff and clients in the Care at Home & Housing Support sector. The awards ceremony itself will be held on Friday 19 May 2023 at the Radisson Blu in Glasgow and will sure to be an eventful night.

There are 10 different award categories to enter including:

  • Emerging Talent Award
  • Care Services Coordination/Administration Award
  • Care Learning Award
  • Leadership Award
  • Outstanding Achievement Award
  • Care Worker of the Year
  • Palliative & End of Life Care Practise Award
  • Technology & People Award
  • Provider of the Year
  • Positive Impact Award

We advise you to read our Award Category Guidelines and Tips & Rules before beginning your nomination. You can either nominate via our online form or you can download the Word version and return the completed form to [email protected] before close of play on Friday 10 March 2023.

Find out more and enter here.

Social Care Campaign Lobby Month – March 2023

Scottish Care has worked with members to produce the ‘Social Care Campaign’. This campaign aims to raise the profile of social care in Scotland, across care homes and homecare. We hope to use the campaign as a positive vehicle for sharing good practice, information and evidencing the sector’s value. Whilst this campaign originated from Scottish Care, we are looking to get other organisations and providers involved.

The social care sector is experiencing a crisis like never before. Challenges in workforce recruitment and retention, together with the rising cost of living, and astronomical energy and insurance prices, have threatened the sustainability of our social care providers.

We will be using the month of March as a lobby month for this campaign. Starting on Wednesday 1 March, we will be encouraging others to get involved by:

  • Sharing their social care stories on social media about why they #careaboutcare, or with us (through either written words, video or audio clips)
  • Sending letters to MSPs and calling on them to help address the challenges facing social care
  • Sharing the campaign materials with others.

We would like to invite you to the ‘Social Care Campaign Roundtable’ on Wednesday 1 March 9:00 – 10:00 am via Zoom, for your chance to find out more about the campaign and how you get involved.

Please register for this roundtable at:

There will be other activities planned every Wednesday throughout March:

  • Wednesday 1 March – Start of lobby month and online roundtable
  • Wednesday 8 March – Launch of campaign interview series videos
  • Wednesday 15 March – Twitter takeover/conversations
  • Wednesday 22 March – Future of care
  • Wednesday 29 March – Summation of lobby month and campaign statistics

Now is the time to #careaboutcare. We need your help to get involved in this campaign to #shinealight on the social care sector. Please join us in March to take action and raise awareness for social care.

Find out more about the social care campaign here

Register for the roundtable here

Delayed Discharge Webinar – 23 February 2023

We will be hosting an open webinar on delayed discharges due to the recent increased focus on this topic. This will take place on Thursday 23 February, 2:00 – 4:00 pm.

This session will be hosted by our Partners for Integration Joint National Lead, Jim Carle. We will be joined by the Partners for Integration and Care Technologist team and others to share innovation and practice in supporting delayed discharges.

The agenda for this webinar is as follows:

  • Jim Carle – Introduction from webinar host – 2:00 – 2:05 pm
  • Potential provider – Our Registration Journey – 2:05 – 2:20 pm
  • Care Tech Team – Innovation in Technology & Future Workforce – 2:20 – 2:40 pm
  • Aberdeen City –Innovations in care planning and care delivery – 2:55 – 3:10 pm
  • Forth Valley Home From Hospital Partnership – 3.10 pm – 3:25 pm
  • Fife –Hospital Discharge, Innovation & Initiatives – 3:25 – 3:50 pm
  • Jim Carle – Round up and the way forward – 3:50 pm – Close

Please note that this webinar will take place on Microsoft Teams and will be recorded. Registration is required.

Please join us for this important webinar session.

Register for this webinar here.