COVID-19: adult social care and support

Information and guidance related to social care, including commissioning and supporting the provider market, and working collaboratively with health partners.


We are working as fast as we can to update this page with useful information for you. Please follow @LGAwellbeing for the latest updates and keep checking back.

This page holds key information and guidance related to social care, including commissioning and supporting the provider market, and working collaboratively with health partners.

If you can’t find what you are looking for, please register for our knowledge-hub site which has been set up by our joint LGA/ADASS Adult Social Care Hub - this holds a more extensive depository of information for each workstream and our daily adult social care updates.

General information and Government Action Plan

GOV.UK – social care guidance

GOV.UK – overview of adult social care guidance on coronavirus

GOV.UK – adult social care action plan 

GOV.UK – guidance on getting tested

GOV.UK – support for care homes

GOV.UK – adult social care infection control fund

GOV.UK – infection control fund Q&A

GOV.UK – whole home testing for care home staff and residents fact sheet (pdf, 5 June 2020)

GOV.UK – extension of eligibility of whole care home testing (pdf, 5 June 2020)

LGA – response to Government adult social care action plan

LGA – Health and Wellbeing Board Chair touch base Debrief and moving into the next phase of COVID-19 (pdf, June 2020)

LGA – Health and Wellbeing Boards reset tool: to support HWB chairs move into the next stage of COVID-19

NHS.UK – COVID-19 standard operating procedure: community health services

NHS.UK – information on the second phase of the NHS reponse to COVID-19

NHS.UK – COVID-19 prioritisation within community health services

ADASS: COVID-19 Responses and Guidance

Care Quality Commission: COVID-19 Information

Care Quality Commission: COVID-19 insight document (pdf, 20 May 2020)

Social Care Institute of Excellence: COVID-19 Information

Skills for Care: COVID-19 Information

Hospital discharge

Revised hospital discharge guidance - briefing for councils

This briefing summarises the key messages in the suite of documents published by Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) on 21 August 2020 to support the implementation of the revised discharge guidance.

Community health and care discharge and crisis care model: an investment in reablement

Supporting people at home (the ethos of Home First from hospital) and discharge to assess are approaches promoted through the COVID-19 Hospital Discharge Requirements first published in March 2020.

Support to systems on enhanced discharge arrangements

The LGA, working with the Better Care Support Team and Emergency Care Improvement Support Team, have developed a joint offer of support to local systems around the enhanced discharge arrangements. The offer covers briefings, advice, webinars and good practice guides as well as bespoke support to help a local system implement any aspects of the discharge arrangements, assess impact of implementation or address challenges. These slides show more detail and explain how to access the support.

Advice note for local government: Accounting for Spend Against the NHS £1.3 billion: COVID Discharge Agreements

The LGA has produced an advice note for local government finance leads and key others faced with the challenge of properly accounting for expenditure to be claimed against the national £1.3 billion allocation to clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to support enhanced discharge arrangements during the COVID-19 pandemic, and ensuring that reimbursement claims are fully auditable, internally and externally. The note is intended to supplement rather than replace the NHSE&I guidance, frequently asked questions and responses, and model amendments/extensions to existing Section 75 arrangements posted on the Better Care Support Exchange website.

NHS.UK – after-care needs of inpatients suffering from COVID-19 (pdf, 5 June 2020)

NHS.UK – COVID-19 Discharge hub

NHS.UK – COVID-19 Hospital Discharge Service Requirements (updated 20 April 2020)

NHS.UK – COVID-19 Discharge Service Requirements guidance (webinar recording from 20 March 2020)

GOV.UK – guidance for stepdown of infection control precautions within hospitals and discharging COVID-19 patients from hospital to home settings

Better Care Exchange  Supported by the LGA and national partners, this exchange contains a wide range of advice, resources, discussion forums, FAQs, webinar recordings and links to guidance relating to the Covid-19 discharge. To request access, email England.bettercareexchange@nhs.net

Carers

ONS – Coronavirus and the impact on caring

GOV.UK – Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: people receiving direct payments

GOV.UK – guidance on providing unpaid care

Carers Week – the rise in the number of unpaid carers during the coronavirus outbreak (pdf, June 2020)

Please see the folder titled 'Mental health, mental capacity, isolation and wellbeing' on the vulnerable groups page, and the mental health FAQs for more information

Workforce

COVID-19 social care staff wellbeing
The LGA and NHS England and Improvement have produced a comprehensive pack of wellbeing information and resources to help health and care managers support the wellbeing of staff.

LGA – wellbeing for frontline staff 

LGA – workforce and HR support 

COVID-19 employment law FAQs (further details on the NHS and Social Care Life Assurance Scheme and what it means for councils, is now available)

Social Work Together campaign - council sign up
In partnership with Social Work England, Dfe and DHSC, the LGA is providing a platform to connect social workers offering their expertise to local employers. By registering through our online tool, councils can find social workers returning to work in their area. 

Care Workforce – access to the Care Workforce app (login required)

Skills for Care guidance

Skills for Care COVID-19 IE and PA updates

Join Social Care – new recruitment campaign from the Department of Health and Social Care

CQC interim guidance on DBS and other recruitment checks for providers recruiting staff and volunteers to health and social care services

CQC – supporting testing for coronavirus in the adult care sector

GOV.UK – bereavement resources for the social care workforce

GOV.UK – steps to take following the death of a person who worked in adult social care

GOV.UK – management of staff and exposed patients and residents in health and social care settings

GOV.UK – number of COVID-19 outbreaks in care homes: management information

GOV.UK – informing DHSC of the death of a worker in social care

GOV.UK – how to work safely in care homes

GOV.UK – health and wellbeing of the adult social care workforce

GOV.UK – guidance for coronavirus testing for frontline workers who are self isolating

GOV.UK – government to extend testing for coronavirus to more frontline workers

GOV.UK – letter from the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock to the social care workforce

GOV.UK – letter from the Minister of State for Care, Helen Whately MP, to recruitment agencies

GOV.UK – health, care, and volunteer workers parking pass and concessions

GOV.UK– Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for people receiving direct payments 

GOV.UK – letter from Secretaries of State for Education and Health and Social Care, thanking social workers for their efforts in the pandemic (pdf, 27 April 2020)

GOV.UK – letter from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) for employers of essential workers with information on testing for symptomatic staff (pdf, 24 April 2020)

GOV.UK – essential workers: apply for a coronavirus test

GOV.UK – letter from DHSC and PHE: further information on COVID-19 testing in social care (pdf, 27 April 2020)

GOV.UK – new guarantee on death in service benefits for frontline health and care staff during the pandemic

GOV.UK – guidance on the reuse of medicines in a care home or a hospice

GOV.UK – home secretary announces visa extensions for frontline health and care workers

Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) have launched a new app for the adult social care workforce

NHS.UK – the NHS and Social Care Coronavirus Life Assurance Scheme 2020

The LGA has worked with Government to develop a scheme that now suspends parking charges for health workers, social care workers and NHS volunteers for on-street parking and open car parks (e.g. pay and display car parks) as they go about their critical work

How to access the ASC provider daily data collection

ASC Provider Data Collection and how councils can access the data

On the 17 April, a joint letter was issued from the Care Provider Alliance (CPA), Care Quality Commission (CQC), Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE/I) asking all Registered Adult Social Care Providers to provide a daily data return designed to ensure that resources and activity is targeted effectively where they are needed. We are continuing to discuss with national partners how we continue to support councils manage their local care market responsibilities while meeting the national requirements for provider data and minimising the burden on provider organisations.

Data from Care Homes is collected through Capacity Tracker and can be viewed on a real time basis through a COVID-19 Business Continuity report. CQC started collecting data from domiciliary care at the beginning of April. We have now launched the COVID-19 Adult Social Care Tracker showing the impact that COVID-19 has had on Residential and Domiciliary Care, as reported by care providers. This tracker is designed to provide councils with the information they need to support care providers during this current emergency.

The ASC tracker will be updated daily with an extract of data from care homes as collected by Capacity Tracker, and data collected by CQC from domiciliary care providers. The tool is hosted on LG Inform and is free to use for approved users from councils using a secure sign-in.

Only approved users can get access to this information – if you need access please ask your DASS or suitable alternative to email adass.lga.covid@local.gov.uk detailing ‘Approved users for COVID-19 reports’ in the subject heading, and detailing who they would like to approve within their council for access to these reports. In addition to the approval you will also need to be registered with LG Inform.

Further information about the COVID-19 Adult Social Care Tracker and Capacity Tracker can be found at our Knowledge Hub site under the SITREPS folder

Guidance on Care Act easements

GOV.UK – ethical framework for adult social care

GOV.UK – Care Act easements: guidance for local authorities

CQC – the Care Art and the easements to it

Care Act Easements webinar read out and Q&A (pdf, 16 April 2020)

Mental health, mental capacity, isolation and wellbeing

Please see the folder titled 'Mental health, mental capacity, isolation and wellbeing on the vulnerable groups page, and the mental health FAQs

Social care commissioners and providers

Please see the below documents that will be of interest to commissioners and providers:

Funding sustainability

LGA – financial pressures in adult social care information provided to the Minister of State for Care (4 June)

ADASS – budget survey 2020

ADASS – rapid provider support survey: wide range of support being offered to providers by cash strapped councils

LGA/ADASS – statement on Temporary Funding for Adult Social Care providers during the Covid-19 Crisis (8 April)

LGA/ADASS/CPA – social care provider resilience during COVID-19: guidance to commissioners (13 March)

LGA  information and guidance for council adult social care commissioners

Infection control fund

LGA Briefing – Infection Control Fund Grant Conditions (29 May)

GOV.UK – Adult social care infection control fund - local authority circular (pdf, 22 May 2020)

GOV.UK – Adult social care infection control fund letter from Minister for Care (pdf, 22 May 2020)

GOV.UK – allocation table for councils, for the infection control fund for adult social care (pdf,18 May 2020)

Care homes

ADASS North West Branch – Care home infection control top tips (July 2020)

LGA/ADASS – Care home support plans: a national overview (June 2020)

LGA – Briefing on care homes support and resilience plans (pdf, May 2020)

GOV.UK – letter to Directors of Public Health on coronavirus testing in care homes (pdf, July 2020)

GOV.UK – visiting care homes during coronavirus

GOV.UK – COVID-19: support for care homes

GOV.UK – apply for coronavirus tests for a care home

GOV.UK – letter from Department of Health and Social Care regarding the roll out of whole care home testing (pdf, 13 May 2020)

GOV.UK – whole home testing for care home staff and residents (pdf, updated July 27 2020)

GOV.UK – COVID-19: care home support package (pdf, 14 May 2020)

GOV.UK – Minister of State for Care letter - support for care homes (pdf, 14 May 2020)

GOV.UK – letter regarding further information on testing in care homes (pdf, 7 May 2020)

CQC – access to hospital care and treatment for older and disabled people living in care homes and in the community during the pandemic

NHS – primary care and community health support care home residents letter (pdf, 1 May 2020)

Better Care Fund - Care home Support Planning Returns Webinar

Home care

GOV.UK – supported living services during coronavirus

GOV.UK – COVID-19: provision of home care

GOV.UK – COVID-19 guidance on the provision of home care letter (pdf, 22 May 2020)

Other/ general care and support sector

LGA/ADASS COVID-19 Briefing Note – Financial Aspects of Direct Payments and support for Personal Assistants (pdf)

Key messages from Government Guidance during the COVID-19 crisis which relate to the operation of direct payments (pdf)

MHRA – purchasing medical devices for social care (pdf, 9 July 2020)

GOV.UK – guidance for people receiving direct payments

GOV.UK – letter from Ros Roughton, Director General of Social Care at the DHSC: Test and Trace: guidance for social care employers about staff isolation (pdf, 29 May 2020)

GOV.UK – letter from Ros Roughton, DG of Social Care at the DHSC: Test and Trace: guidance for social care employers about staff isolation (pdf, 29 May 2020)

CQC – examples of how providers are responding to coronavirus

CQC – support for adult social care during the COVID-19 pandemic

CQC – safety and speaking up during the COVID-19 emergency

CQC – joint statement on CQC regulatory approach during the coronavirus pandemic

CQC – emergency support framework: what to expect

GOV.UK – reducing risk in adult social care

NHS Confederation – NHS Reset campaign, on what the health and care system will look like post COVID-19

GOV and NHS – Insight for care: capacity tracker

Local Government Health and Social Care Ombudsman – guidance issued to councils and care providers

Please also see the below pages and sites for further detail on commissioner and provider related issues:

LGA  information and guidance for council adult social care commissioners

LGA – adult social care commissioning practice resource

Care Provider Alliance  – information for providers about COVID-19

Local support for vulnerable people

For more information on support for vulnerable people, please see the vulnerable groups page

PPE (Personal protective equipment)

Quality assurance of PPE and medical devices – top lines and Q&A (pdf, July 2020)

PHE – Personal protective equipment (PPE) – resource for care workers delivering homecare (domiciliary care) during sustained COVID-19 transmission in the UK (pdf, 16 June)

PHE – Personal protective equipment (PPE) – resource for care workers working in care homes during sustained COVID-19 transmission in England (pdf, 16 June)

Letter to Secretary of State Matt Hancock from the LGA and ADASS on PPE for social care staff

Department of Health and Social Care – letter to councils providing guidance and information on PPE for personal assistants (pdf, 18 May 2020)

DEFRA – key messages on the disposal of personal protective equipment (pdf, 20 May 2020)

GOV.UK – how to order emergency personal protective equipment

GOV.UK – recommended PPE for primary, outpatient, community and social care by setting, NHS and independent sector (pdf, 20 May 2020)

GOV.UK – Personal protective equipment (PPE) guidance during COVID-19

GOV.UK PPE Hub

GOV.UK – how to work safely in care homes (with use of PPE)

GOV.UK – how to work safely in domiciliary care (with use of PPE)

GOV.UK – VAT zero rating for PPE

Government PPE Plan (10 April 2020)

NHS.UK – Guidance on supply and use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

NHS.UK – COVID-19 Discharge Service Requirements guidance (webinar recording from 20 March 2020)

Letter from the Department of Health and Social Care to councils regarding Local Resilience Forums and PPE (pdf, 30 April 2020)

GOV.UK – treasury cut taxes to reduce PPE costs

GOV.UK – how to wear and make a cloth face covering

Care Provider Alliance – information on PPE for providers

People with a learning disability and/or autism

Delivering safe, face-to-face adult day care – re-opening of day services

Human rights and the Government's response to COVID-19: the detention of young people who are autistic and/or have learning disabilities (pdf, June 2020)

GOV.UK – supporting disabled people through the coronavirus outbreak

GOV.UK – supporting adults with learning disabilities and autistic adults

GOV.UK – providing unpaid care to adults with learning disabilities and autistic adults

NHS.UK – legal guidance for mental health, learning disability and autism, and specialised commissioning services supporting people of all ages during the pandemic (pdf, 19 May 2020)

NHS.UK – mental health, learning disabilities and autism

CQC – data on deaths of people with a learning disability

National Autistic Society – coronavirus advice and helpline for parents, young people and staff

The Challenging Behaviour Foundation – information and resources for families and carers

Learning Disability England – keeping informed and in touch during coronavirus

The Learning Disability Professional Senate have developed two resources for people with learning disabilities and their families:

Social Care Insitute for Excellence (SCIE) – supporting autistic people and people with learning disabilities during COVID-19

Easy-read information guides: sites and hosting sites

Safeguarding

COVID-19 safeguarding adults FAQs (pdf, 22 May 2020)

Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) Guidance during COVID-19

Action Fraud – note on home testing fraud

National Trading standards – advice and resources

Surviving economic abuse: economic abuse and the coronavirus outbreak

Principle safeguarding network – safeguarding advice (pdf, 20 May 2020)

Guidance for adult social care staff in carrying out direct work with people remotely (pdf, 20 May 2020)

Safeguarding for volunteers: a one minute guide (pdf, 20 May 2020)

Please visit the COVID-19 vulnerable groups page for a range of resources on domestic abuse

Digital

Social Care Digital Innovation Accelerator (SCDIA)
Councils can apply for match funding through the SCDIA programme 2020/21 (deadline 24 April) 2020.

Digital Social Care – Digital Guidance for Providers
Digital Social Care has set up a new helpline to assist adult social care providers to use technology during the COVID-19 outbreak. The helpline is open between 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday and will give providers practical advice to troubleshoot a problem or give 1-1 support. Commissioners are encouraged to share with local provider networks. 

COVID-19: rapid care technology deployment tool
This guide has been developed in collaboration with those leading care technology responses to COVID-19 in councils.

NHSX and NHS Digital – internet connection deals for care homes (guidance is also available on choosing an internet connection for your care home and how to use digital services in your care home)

Housing

The Housing LIN Coronavirus Info Hub is split into three sections. The first contains practice briefings and top tips for commissioners and operators of specialist and supported housing on COVID-19. The second section signposts to relevant Government guidance for local authorities and housing providers on home, housing and homelessness, and related care and support, and NHS and public health guidance. The third section offers wider housing and care sector resources on tackling the pandemic.

For more information, please see our housing, planning and homelessness page.

Helplines for social care staff

Samaritans helpline

Samaritans have introduced a confidential emotional support line for social care staff that is free to access from 7.00am-11.00pm, seven days a week. You can speak to a trained Samaritans volunteer who can help with confidential listening and signposting to specific support you might find helpful. Call 0300 131 7000.

Bereavement & Trauma Line

There is a team of fully qualified and trained professionals ready to help you at the Bereavement & Trauma Line. This assistance is available from anywhere in the country and is provided by Hospice UK. Specialist counsellors and support workers are available to support all adult social care staff:

  • who have experienced a bereavement
  • whose wellbeing has been affected by witnessing traumatic deaths as part of their work
  • to discuss any other anxiety or emotional issues they are experiencing as a result of the coronavirus epidemic.

All calls will be treated in the strictest of confidence and this will be explained to you when you call. This service is open to you and all adult social care staff and is available, seven days a week, between 8am and 8pm. You do not need a referral. Call 0300 303 4434.