Care Home IPC Manual Webinar – 28 October

We are hosting a webinar with our Transforming Workforce Lead, Dr Jane Douglas and Jackie Dennis, Senior Improvement Adviser (IPC Focus) from the Care Inspectorate to discuss the Care Home IPC Manual. This webinar is scheduled for  Thursday 28th October, 2:00 pm.

This webinar will help members better understand the process of the IPC Manual & Cleaning Schedule. This session will be in a meeting format to allow members to interact with our speakers and to ask any questions. We are keen to find out how members are getting on with the manual and what they might find difficult.

If you have any questions for this webinar session please send to [email protected].

Details to join this session will be available on the Members Area shortly.

Annes Law Consultation Session for Care Home Members

Anne’s Law: proposals for adults living in care homes to maintain family and friendship connections 

The Scottish Government are holding a consultation on the introduction of ‘Anne’s Law’, to ensure that people who live in adult care homes have rights to see and spend time with the people who are important to them.

Find out more about the Scottish Government proposal here.

Scottish Care are inviting care home members to a consultation session on this on Thursday 21st October, 2:30 – 3:30 pm. We encourage members to join and give feedback on this proposal to allow us to draft an official response for the Scottish Government’s consultation.

Details to join will be available on the Members Area. Please contact [email protected] if you have any issues accessing this area.

Please note that this session will be recorded.

‘Building Compassionate Connections’ – Bereavement Charter Webinar (3 Nov)

Building Compassionate Connections | A Webinar on Bereavement 

Wednesday 3rd November, 13:30 to 15:15 (via Zoom)

The Group which developed the Charter is holding the second in a series of webinars exploring different elements of death and bereavement as part of To Absent Friends Week.

Full programme can be viewed below.

Register your place here.


Media release: Five Nations Care Forum Communiqué – 11 October 2021

Five Nations Care Forum Communiqué 11 October 2021 

Leaders of care associations in England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland met in London on 4 and 5 October 2021, for the first time since the start of the pandemic.

Reflecting on the invaluable role of our care workforce in making a positive difference to the lives of others, and on their vital contribution to economic growth, we renewed our collective commitment to improving their working lives.

Throughout the darkest days of the COVID19 pandemic, care workers kept going, focusing relentlessly on the safety and well-being of others.

Now there is requirement for Governments to engage with this vital healthcare workforce to ensure they are positioned to focus relentlessly on investing in them.

In Scotland and Wales, careworkers have each been given bonuses of £500 or more in recognition of their outstanding commitment during the COVID-19 pandemic. In Northern Ireland there is commitment to do the same. The Governments of England and the Republic of Ireland have declined to acknowledge the exceptional contribution of the care workforce. Whilst the bonuses have been very much appreciated by careworkers, one-off payments of this nature do not solve underlying issues.

Increasing pay, terms and conditions of employment for the workforce, so they are on a par with equivalent roles in State-provided health services is a priority. The pandemic should signal an end to the discrimination applied by Governments towards employees in the independent and voluntary sectors who are fulfilling vital roles in caring for older and disabled people at home or in the community.

News of the Scottish government’s announcement on 5 October 2021 that wages of careworkers in Scotland will rise from £9.50 per hour to £10.02 per hour, equivalent to Band 2 healthcare assistants in the NHS, was warmly welcomed and heralded as a lead other Governments in the UK and Ireland should follow.

A recommendation by the Low Pay Commission to increase the UK’s national legal minimum wage to £9.42 per hour, which will likely be accepted by government, is another step in the right direction for UK healthcare providers. But these are far more than minimum wage jobs and we need to go further to attract, retain and develop a talent pool for the future. Irish representatives emphasised the critical requirement to review pay levels in the sector.

Recent analysis by the Health Foundation suggests we need over 600,000 additional careworkers in the UK in the next decade to meet needs, on top of the 1.5 million we already have. Over 20,000 healthcare assistants alone will be required to meet demand for services in Ireland in the next ten years.

As a society, we must recognise and fairly reward the enhanced skills and experience required by careworkers to support highly dependent older and disabled people with complex health and social needs.

There is urgent requirement to invest in training and upskilling care workers in social care. Careworkers and managers must be trained in numerous areas including medicines management; frailty; reablement; dementia care; end-of-life care; catheter and stoma care; wound care; care of people with specific conditions such as diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, motor neurone disease, epilepsy, autism and learning difficulties. They must understand safeguarding; infection prevention and control; falls prevention; food hygiene; health and safety; and fire regulations. They also require skills in leadership, management, finance, marketing, planning, customer relations, communication, influencing, negotiation, conflict resolution and de-escalation. And increasingly they are also expected to be experts in technology solutions in care. These roles are not just about helping people get out of bed or cooking.

If the United Kingdom and Ireland are going to shift towards higher wage, higher productivity economies, and reduce inequalities, it is essential to focus on the social determinants of health, rather than just healthcare per se. Social care plays a pivotal role in improving the way we all live our lives.

International evidence shows there is a direct relationship between healthy life expectancy and GDP per capita. And that the tradable economy cannot function effectively without a strong foundational economy.
Investing in our care workforce is a key part of investing in our health and wealth as nations.

The Five Nations Care Forum calls on the Governments of the UK and Ireland to:

  1. Fund social care adequately so that careworkers are paid fairly for the skilled roles they perform, and at least on a par with equivalent public sector roles.
  2. Support development of an expert-led workforce strategy for social care and a 10-year workforce plan, aligned with the NHS People Plan in the UK. In Ireland, the Government’s Health Service Capacity Review and ESRI projections emphasise the urgent need for stakeholders to bring together a workforce strategy, with shortages in homecare workers already manifesting across the country. The Government must also publish the terms of reference for the Social Care Workforce Advisory Group announced by Minister Butler at the HCCI conference last week.
  3. Recognise current national needs and regional variation in demography and workforce and explore placing social care on the Shortage Occupation List.
  4. Create a professional register for careworkers in England, in line with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Registration of careworkers needs to be adequately funded and carefully implemented. In Ireland, regulation of homecare must remain a Government priority and bring better State resourcing for homecare workers.

Climate Change and Social Care Collective – Hot Report 2

On September 15th 2021, The Health and Social Care Academy (a programme of the ALLIANCE) and Scottish Care held the second event of ‘The Climate and Social Care Collective’ roundtable series. More information about the development and purpose of the roundtables can be found in the first report 

The second roundtable was focused on innovation and solution, with emphasis on taking a cross-sectoral approach. The event also explored people-centred solutions and a role of the community in supporting sustainable change. 

Our first speaker was Kenneth Watt, Policy and Public Affairs Manager for the Red Cross, leading work across the devolved nations covering health and independent living, refugee and asylum and emergency response. Kenneth spoke about the ‘Feeling the Heat’ briefing which discussed the impact of heat waves and climate change in the UK. The report evidences the increasing risk of heatwaves, explores public perceptions, and sets out solutions. The impact of heatwaves will be especially significant in terms of excess deaths, on older and more vulnerable people. Further, the overall impact on health services will exacerbate underlying health inequities. There is a significant role for community organisers and volunteers to take action as this sector feed into early warnings and getting information out to communities. Government recognition of the human impact of heatwaves, with coordination across sectors and levels. People must have access to targeted information that appropriately meets their needs.  

The second speaker was Christine Owen, Senior Manager with the People Powered Results (PPR) team, a Nesta Specialist Enterprise. The PPR team works with organisations and public systems to release the power of people closest to issues to adapt and take action in an increasingly complex world. Christine discussed place-based approaches to change, how to create the conditions for such change and how we might start to think about challenges differently through adapting, maintaining, and sustaining ourselves. This was demonstrated through a practical action programme ongoing with the Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) to deliver transformation focused on Covid recovery with community-led action to build a fairer, greener and healthier future as part of this recovery. Christine echoed Similar to our first speaker and emphasised the importance of collaboration as an instrument to effect change.  

The third speaker in the roundtable event was Bev Knight, Head of National Operations, with Redeem Exchange – a circular economy initiative introduced to divert plastic waste from landfill by reusing plastic hand sanitiser and soap bottles through a collect, wash, refill and return service. Bev highlighted the impact that people can have on the climate with simple methods. Potential solutions to a more sustainable future align with green jobs and a circular economy approach and discussed how the changes from this initiative support other vulnerable groups as well as the care sector. 

After the Q and A session, participants were split into smaller breakout groups to cover questions around key questions:  

1) if there was a £25 million social care climate innovation fund, what types of sustainable solutions would you like to see it used for?  

2) Which key stakeholders need to work together to take climate action? This may involve local authorities, those delivering and receiving care, health and social care partnerships, care providers, the business sector, transport and procurement. 

 3) Do you have any good practice examples (including from other sectors) that you would like to share which you think would be applicable to the social care sector? 

The breakout sessions fostered thoughtful conversation on the challenges and shortcomings with placing social care as a top priority alongside and within climate issues. Some of the recurring points that came up were on the biggest carbon emitters in the sector. While there is little data to evaluate the social care sector’s carbon footprint in Scotland, we know that the big areas of concern are around transport and energy – specifically heating.  

One of the areas that participants pointed out would be most useful would be to centralise information; this would allow people to access or contribute to showcasing measures that can be taken and the effectiveness of this would be useful for providers to understand where they can make a difference. Speakers mentioned there is a collective effort needed to implement change and pooling resources in this space would be helpful. 

There was recognition that the social care sector does not sit in isolation. Participants suggested joining up approaches to better understanding the role of regulators and inspectors, commissioning of services, of hospitals and health boards, and potential costs (both from action to inaction). It is important to join up data to understand how different industries connect and play a role in the delivery of care and support (more specifically laundry, food, agriculture, retail, PPE). There is a carbon cost to the delivery of care and these processes and costs must be balanced with a rights-based agenda. Many of the concerns circle back to the long-standing issue of insufficient funding available in the sector and the undervaluing of social care. Changing mindsets to focus on sustainability in the commissioning and procurement processes would be beneficial to implementing long-term change. 

We are looking forward to our final roundtable event taking place on Wednesday 20th October from 10:00- 12:00 which will look at key principles and calls to action developed as part of the series. We look forward to welcoming our panelists for the session and invite anyone interested in the subject to attend! Sign up here.

Migration Advisory Committee Engagement Session – 7 October

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) have been tasked by the UK Gov to carry out a review of immigration procedures as they affect social care. They are engaging with all the devolved administrations in the UK and now want to hear from you, our Scottish Care members and speak with you on matters of immigration, recruitment and retention issues.

We are holding an engagement session on Thursday 7 October, 2:00 pm on Zoom for members to feedback to colleagues from MAC. Please join this session.

Details to join this session will be available on the Members Area of this website. If you have any issues accessing this area at all, please contact [email protected].

Job Opportunity – Independent Sector Lead: Angus




Health and Social Care Integration

£44,494 per annum – 35 hours per week

Fixed term contract funded till March 2025

Do you have an interest in improving the quality of care, can you COLLABORATE, INNOVATE AND COMMUNICATE, and would you like to join a successful, committed and highly motivated team? This could be the opportunity you have been waiting for.

We are seeking to engage an Independent Sector Lead to support the Integration of Health and Social Care in Angus.  Hosted by Scottish Care and working closely with care providers and partners, the post involves ensuring sector involvement in the delivery of the integrating of health and social care in Scotland’s HSCPs

The post holder must be highly motivated, be able to use initiative, possess excellent communication and networking skills, demonstrate success and experience working at strategic level with policy makers, providers, regulators, people supported by services and carers. Qualifications and experience at a senior management level would be a significant advantage.

The post holder will be expected to create and support significant collaborations across the independent care sector while contributing to the development of new care pathways which will result in the delivery of improved outcomes for people who access care and support. The post holder will ensure the Independent sector’s contribution is fundamental to integrated services and transformational change and be able to evidence their impact. The role requires considerable and skilful collaboration with our key partners in the NHS, Local Authority, Carers, third sector organisations and other forums.

The post is home based with travel where necessary, based and is hosted by Scottish Care.

To request an application pack, please contact Tracy Doyle at Scottish Care by email [email protected]

Closing date 12pm on Friday 22nd October 2021.  Interviews will be held by video conference – 28th or 29th October 2021 (to be confirmed).

Climate Change and Social Care Collective – guest blog from Anne Marie Bergseng

This summer saw wild, hot and wet weather causing disruption and taking lives in communities across the globe. The heat wave in Canada and the USA, and the devastating floods in Germany and Belgium are some of the international examples. Closer to home flash flooding following unusual summer heat has hit communities in Scotland and across the UK. What does this changing climate mean for the social care sector?

Earlier this summer the UK Climate Change Committee released its Independent Assessment of UK Climate Risk saying the UK is ‘struggling to keep pace with climate change impacts’. The summary for health and social care points to flooding, overheating, and water scarcity as the main concerns. There could also be increasing risks from high winds or storms, and changes in air quality.

These risks will impact the social care sector both as disruption to the services from transport and access issues, and through the service users’ changing medical needs. It is also important to remember that the impacts of climate change are not evenly felt. Those already disadvantaged or in poor health are disproportionately impacted.

This is recognised in Climate Ready Scotland: Second Scottish Climate Change Adaptation Programme, which has an aim of ‘Scotland’s health and social care is ready and responding to changing demands as a result of the changing climate’. It also acknowledges that ‘impacts on these services will likely disproportionately affect those who are already more vulnerable’. The programme lists a number of actions underway to improve the sector’s resilience.[1]

At the same time every organisation and every one of us individually have a role in reducing the greenhouse gas emissions causing climate change.  Travel, waste and energy use are some of the practices where organisational and individual everyday practices can be part of taking us in the right direction, with a wealth of resources available to inspire and enable change to reduce the unhealthy and dangerous impacts of a warming world.


Anne Marte Bergseng


[1] Last year ClimateXChange published a report looking at how social care at home services had faired through three extreme weather events. The research found that extreme weather events result in a substantially increased workload for care workers and managers in the care at home sector.

About the author:

Anne Marte is the Knowledge Exchange Manager at ClimateXChange – Scotland’s centre of expertise connecting climate change research and policy. She manages research projects on behaviour change and adapting to the impacts of climate change and is a knowledge exchange expert with 20+ years’ experience from media, corporate and science communications, and facilitation. In addition to specific research projects she works across ClimateXChange’s portfolio to connect research and Scottish Government policy-making.

Twitter handle: @annemarteb

This blog was specially commissioned as part of the Health and Social Care Academy (a programme of the ALLIANCE) and Scottish Care’s ‘Climate Change and the Social Care Collective’ roundtable series. The roundtables are helping to foster dialogue and explore the crucial role that social care must play in the context of climate change – in addressing, adapting to and taking action to mitigate the impacts. The last roundtable session will be held on October 20th 2021, from 10:00 – 12:00. More information can be found here:

Scottish buildings light up for homecare workers

On the evening of Wednesday 22 September 2021, significant buildings across Scotland will be lit up in yellow to acknowledge care at home staff. This initiative is in line with the ‘Celebrating Homecare’ event taking place on the same day.

‘Celebrating Homecare’ is an online event developed by the Homecare Association in conjunction with the Care Workers’ Charity. It’s all about celebrating the amazing difference homecare makes in people’s lives every day. It is also being supported by care associations across the UK and Ireland including Scottish Care, Care Forum Wales, Independent Health & Care Providers (Northern Ireland) and Home and Community Care Ireland.

The Partners for Integration team, along with Scottish Care, supported by the Scottish Government, the Scottish Parliament and the Care Inspectorate will be marking ‘Celebrating Homecare’ by lighting up buildings in Scotland to give thanks to the homecare workforce. This initiative is also supported by the Health and Social Care Partnership for Edinburgh, West Lothian, Argyll and Bute, Aberdeen, South Lanarkshire, Perth and Kinross, and West Dunbartonshire.

The buildings will include:

  • St Andrews House, Edinburgh
  • Victoria Quay, Edinburgh
  • Civic Centre, West Lothian
  • Castle House, Dunoon
  • McCaigs Tower, Oban
  • Marischal College, Aberdeen
  • Hamilton Townhouse, Hamilton
  • Perth Bridge, Perth
  • St Paul’s Square, Perth
  • Council Offices in Dumbarton

The buildings will be lit up in the colour yellow, which was chosen to symbolise the flame of a candle. This relates to another initiative by Scottish Care – ‘Candle for Care’, whereby candles are lit every Tuesday at 7:00 pm to express gratitude to all those who provide care and support during the COVID-19 crisis and in memory of all those who have died from COVID-19.

To be able to stay in the place you call home and to remain around family, friends and community is a desire many of us have, maybe most especially when we are ill or requiring support and care. It is this independent living which thousands of homecare staff enable people to achieve every day across the UK.

Throughout the pandemic, care at home staff has continued to support some of our most vulnerable people in their own homes, ensuring their health and safety whilst combatting the challenges of COVID-19. They provide support not only to individuals but their families too. Recent months have also seen unprecedented demand in home-based care organisations, despite this, the homecare workforce has rallied together and gone above and beyond their roles to deliver quality care.

The homecare sector shows us caring, resilience and compassion at its best. Yet this workforce is often undervalued and not recognised. This workforce deserves recognition for their dedication and professionalism every day of the week, regardless of weather, risk or fear.

A relative of a service user said:

“During the Pandemic, it has been a lifeline for my mother to have carers support her at home. We live around 90 minutes away and supporting mum daily would be challenging, particularly as my husband is going through cancer treatment. On the occasions when we have met with carers, usually when delivering meals for mum, we’ve both been extremely impressed by their care and professionalism.

My mother very much enjoys the company of the carers and the support they provide. It gives her a focus and also a ‘raison d’etre.’ It’s encouraging to hear that they are supporting mum leaving her flat for short walks. Our thanks to all the carers.”

Jim Carle, Joint National Lead for Partners for Integration, Scottish Care, commented:

“This ‘light up’ is an acknowledgement of the care at home workforces’ uphill battle to continue to provide an incredible service in a year like no other, as they have faced and met the challenges of Covid-19.  In an extended period of unprecedented demand, they have gone above and beyond. To acknowledge the magnificent contribution they make to the vulnerable individuals they care for on a daily basis, which is truly worthy of celebration. Our heartfelt thanks for their dedication and care.”