Scottish Care issues statement on the removal of funding to support infection prevention and control in social care
Scottish Care would like to raise concern that Scottish Government funding for infection prevention and control and PPE is being removed at a time when community rates of Covid-19 are back on the rise. The funding has to date been essential in supporting the sector and its workforce to continue providing safe, quality care and support to people living at home and in care homes across the country.
Over the last 2 years, we have seen social care staff and families working tirelessly to keep loved ones safe. The shift to remove this funding is at complete odds with what is happening on the ground, where we are seeing Covid-19 rates increase, and the necessity to continue to safely implement Scottish Government issued guidance which clearly recommends infection prevention control measures and PPE use remain in place alongside the successful vaccination programme.
The way that social care is paid for seems complicated, but in most cases, each year local authorities or Health and Social Care Partnerships set a rate for providers which is significantly cheaper than if the council were to deliver it themselves. Funding for this financial year does not cover the guidance outlining the new way of working, which has kept people safe from Covid-19 as this money had been coming from the Scottish Government. There is no capacity in the system to change this, leaving care providers wondering how they will be able to fill the funding gap. We have all felt the effects of this pandemic and for Ministers to remove funding with 2 weeks’ notice is short-sighted and potentially dangerous to those who work in and access care and support.