What's New Bulletin 130 - 2 February 2023

This is edition 130 of the provider bulletin, containing information on guidance, procedures and new initiatives. Very urgent or high priority communications may still be issued on an ad hoc basis, but we will try to keep these to a minimum.

  1. REMINDER Important information about the tendering of care homes, supported living and home support sensory services for Birmingham City Council (information for all providers)
  2. UPDATED GUIDANCE COVID-19 PPE guide for adult social care services and settings (information for all care providers)
  3. Message from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC): How you can become a #MadeWithCare social media influencer (information for all providers)
  4. Message from the Capacity Tracker Team: Autumn boosters will no longer need to be reported in Capacity Tracker from 22nd February (information for all providers)
  5. REMINDER It's never too late to get vaccinated for COVID-19 and flu (information for all providers)
  6. Expanding the care profession’s skillset: delegated healthcare (information for all care homes)
  7. Managing infections through better ventilation in care homes (information for all care homes)
  8. Care Home: Chair Based Exercise Training Pilot, on line various dates available (information for Birmingham and Solihull care homes)
  9. REMINDER Project ECHO Core Competency Framework for Care Homes various dates(information for Birmingham and Solihull care homes)
  10. Upcoming Project Echo online events – February to April 2022 (information for Birmingham and Solihull care homes)
  11. NHS England Bitesize sessions on Urinary Catheter Care to improve outcomes for patients – various dates February – March 2023 (information for all nursing homes)
  12. REMINDER Managing Deterioration in Learning Disability Homes 27 February 2023 2 - 3pm Virtual Event (information for West Midlands younger adult care homes)
  13. The Managers Conference 2023 13-14 March 2023 (information for all providers)
  14. Skills for Care List of forthcoming events and opportunities for social care businesses (information for all providers)

1. REMINDER Important information about the tendering of care homes, supported living and home support sensory services for Birmingham City Council (information for all providers)

The tender application process is due to close at 12 noon on Monday 6th February 2023. You must make sure that your applications are completed by this deadline, so they will be considered in the first application window for the Care Homes and Supported Living 2023 contracts (the Home Support Sensory Loss contract is a closed framework and will not be reopening). As set out in the contract documents, fee increases will only be backdated to the date of contract award, so it is important that existing providers wishing to receive their inflationary increase apply as soon as possible.

The clarification process for the 2023 contracts closed on 31st January. This covered questions about the procurement exercise or how to complete the Questionnaire. Refer to the clarification log for all questions asked and answered;

Tender opportunities | Tender opportunities | Birmingham City Council

You can also check the relevant guidance document which is available from the list of dropdown documents under each contract heading on the CareMatch Portal;

Contract documents

See the following special bulletin item on the most common system enquiries received so far to the Market Intelligence inbox around starting applications and their solutions;

2023 Tender - Advice on most common system enquiries - Care services providers' bulletin (birmingham.gov.uk)

There is also useful information on managing your applications available in a guide on how to review and amend submitted applications before the deadline. This information can be found in the Clarification log below:

Tender opportunities | Tender opportunities | Birmingham City Council

Below is a reminder of how to access technical support with using the CareMatch Portal;

CareMatch Portal Support Step 1

Review the tender instructions document and any guidance in the CareMatch Portal, to check you are entering the correct type of information.

CareMatch Portal Support Step 2

Review the CareMatch Portal User guide for instructions, which can be found below:

User Guide for providers using Care Match Portal | Birmingham City Council

CareMatch Portal Support Step 3

Check the Clarification Log and bulletins, as we may have published some further information already to support you:

Tender opportunities | Tender opportunities | Birmingham City Council

CareMatch Portal Support Step 4

Only after you have attempted to resolve your technical issue using the above support, should you contact the Council’s Market Intelligence Team via email at: marketintelligence@birmingham.gov.uk

You must give as much detail as possible in your email, including screenshots where possible and which stage of the process you are stuck at. The team will respond either by email or will contact you by phone if they cannot resolve easily by email.

Be aware that the Market Intelligence Team can only answer technical questions relating to the CareMatch Portal and not about any other aspect of the tender process.

2. UPDATED GUIDANCE COVID-19 PPE guide for adult social care services and settings (information for all care providers)

This resource outlines personal protective equipment (PPE) advice for health and social care workers working in the community. It has been updated to reflect the fact that staff no longer need to wear a face mask at all times in social care services and settings, though they are advised to wear one in certain circumstances to minimise the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

The full guidance can be found below;

COVID-19 PPE guide for adult social care services and settings

Refer to the following previous bulletin item 3 for all the infection prevention control guidance updates that took place before Christmas and the advise given by our Birmingham Infection Prevention and Control Team;

What's New Bulletin 125 - 22 December 2022 - Care services providers' bulletin (birmingham.gov.uk)

3. Message from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC): How you can become a #MadeWithCare social media influencer (information for all providers)

As a valued member of the profession, we are reaching out to you to ask for your help in promoting the important and rewarding work that you do. As you know, the country needs more talented individuals to join the field, and we believe that your voice can have a big influence on future candidates.

We are therefore looking for ambassadors for adult social care, who will promote the profession by creating short Instagram reels. This will this be an exciting opportunity for selected ambassadors to grow their own social media following, and receive full support in creating their reels while showcasing why working in adult social care is such an important and rewarding career.

If you are interested in becoming an ambassador, get in touch by emailing us at adultsocialcarecampaign@dhsc.gov.uk, and we will be in touch to chat and provide you with all the details you need.

4. Message from the Capacity Tracker Team: Autumn boosters will no longer need to be reported in Capacity Tracker from 22nd February (information for all providers)

Thank you for your continued efforts to submit autumn COVID-19 booster’s vaccination data through the Capacity Tracker. This continues to be vital to monitor uptake and inform decision making over the autumn and winter and work undertaken would not have been possible without your information.

Our aim, along with DHSC and NHSE colleagues is to only ask you to provide data that is both contemporary and useful. Consequently, from the evening of Wednesday 22nd February questions on autumn booster COVID-19 vaccinations will be removed from Capacity Tracker. We still encourage all residents and staff that have not had their autumn COVID-19 booster vaccine to take this up. Eligible individuals can book and manage their COVID-19 - and flu - vaccination appointments online.  

In accordance with our aim to give at least 3 months’ notice before requiring new data we are giving you notice that information relating to COVID-19 vaccinations under any future booster programmes for care home residents or staff will become part of the mandatory data collection in Capacity Tracker - as it has in previous years. For example, if like last year, a COVID-19 booster programme is announced for this spring for care home residents, the data collection will become mandatory 3 months from the date of this message.

If you require any assistance with refreshing or updating your information, call the Support Centre on 0191 691 3729 (Mon-Fri 8 am-5 pm) or send an email to necsu.capacitytracker@nhs.net.

5. REMINDER It's never too late to get vaccinated for COVID-19 and flu (information for all providers)

Book appointments via the National Booking Service and visit the NHS website to Find your nearest pharmacy offering free flu jabs. To promote vaccination to care colleagues, visit the Campaign Resource Centre for free leaflets, posters and social media content.

National Booking Service

Find your nearest pharmacy offering free flu jabs

Campaign Resource Centre

There is more we can all do to protect our health as the weather changes. The Stay Well this Winter leaflet for 2022/23 is also available to download. This helpful resource provides health information and guidance on how to stay well over the winter months.

Download the Stay Well This Winter leaflet below;

Stay Well This Winter | Campaign Resource Centre (phe.gov.uk)

6. Expanding the care profession’s skillset: delegated healthcare (information for all care homes)

Social care nurses continue to expand an already impressive skillset by taking on some clinical tasks already undertaken by NHS colleagues. Delegated healthcare interventions, supported by full training, combine frontline social care experience with clinical excellence to deliver enhanced, high quality and consistent care. Deborah Sturdy, Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care, and Oonagh Smyth, Chief Executive of Skills for Care, give an update on the work to establish clear guiding principles for delegated healthcare across the sector.

Find out more at the following blog;

The principles of delegated healthcare - Social care (blog.gov.uk)

7. Managing infections through better ventilation in care homes (information for all care homes)

As wintery conditions continue, it's tempting to keep care home residents warm and fuel costs low by hunkering down until the weather gets warmer. But keeping all the windows and doors shut may not be the best idea: care homes need ventilation, just like any other dwelling.

Cath Noakes, Professor of Environmental Engineering for Buildings, at the University of Leeds, and fellow experts in ventilation in health and care settings, offer some timely advice for care homes on maintaining healthy air flow, without elevating infection risks.

Find out more at the following blog;

Managing infections - don’t forget about the indoor air in your care home - Social care (blog.gov.uk)

8. Care Home: Chair Based Exercise Training Pilot, on line various dates available (information for Birmingham and Solihull care homes)

Birmingham & Solihull ICB are pleased to announce the availability of a training course aimed at empowering and skilling care teams to improve the health of residents through the model of regular structured exercise sessions.

We would like to help you give a member of staff the skills and confidence to lead exercise classes and encourage movement in your residents, safely and effectively. The fully funded pilot is aimed at reducing the number of falls in the elderly by intervening to improve their physical fitness levels and strength. Even the smallest amount of exercise will help improve mobility and flexibility/range of movement along with coordination.

Our training partner, Amac are going to be offering a free place on their ‘Chair-based Exercise Instructor Course’ for every older adult care home across Birmingham and Solihull. This will require staff to be able to attend two three-hour Zoom workshops on consecutive days.

If you would like to learn more and book a place on the next available session, contact Liz.Lee@amactraining.co.uk.

9. REMINDER Project ECHO Core Competency Framework for Care Homes various dates(information for Birmingham and Solihull care homes)

This programme has been designed to provider Care Homes with a training and competency framework. The training will provide you with the skills to complete general healthcare tasks and supply you with a framework to guide and record your competency. Further information on what will be included on each day of the course, has been circulated to providers. If you do not have copies, email marketintelligence@birmingham.gov.uk

See below for the links to register. You can also register via the BSOL care homes App with the QR codes on the attached flyer, which can be accessed via the Health Zone UK container (simply type in to the search bar 123456 BSOL).

Places are still available at the following cohorts.You must include the name of your care home on your registration.

Cohort 8 – Venue Moseley Hall Hospital

Day 1 Monday 23 Jan 2023

Day 2 Wed 8 Feb 2023

Day 3 Thurs 2 March 2023

Cohort 9 – Venue Moseley Hall Hospital Day 1 then Saffron Centre Days 2&3

Day 1 Thurs 2 Feb 2023

Day 2 Wed 15 Feb 2023

Day 3 Thurs 6 March 2023

Cohort 10 – Venue The Saffron Centre

Day 1 Mon 27 Feb 2023

Day 2 Mon 13 March 2023

Day 3 Thurs 30 March 2023

10. Upcoming Project Echo online events - February to April 2023 (Information for Birmingham and Solihull care homes)

COPD/Respiratory Conditions - Lorna Hart - Monday 6 February 2023

Wound Care - Angela Walker - Tuesday 28 February 2023

Deterioration and Escalation - Camilla Barrow - Tuesday 9 March 2023

Palliative Care - Annie Hands - Friday 21 March 2023

Diabetes - Angela Thomas - Wednesday 29 March 2023

Understanding Dementia - Sinead Henson - Monday 24 April 2023

11. NHS England Bitesize sessions on Urinary Catheter Care to improve outcomes for patients – various dates February – March 2023 (information for all nursing homes)

You can book onto one of the following Urinary Catheter Care Bitesize Sessions using the following link by searching for “Catheter Care”;

Events | NHS England Events

Caseload reviews: problematic catheter’s: 8 February 2023 12:00-12:30pm

HOUDINI approach: 9 February 2023 12:00-12:30pm

Frequently asked questions panel discussion: 2 March 2023 12:00-12:30pm

12. REMINDER Managing Deterioration in Learning Disability Homes 27 February 2023 2 - 3pm Virtual Event (information for West Midlands younger adult care homes)

This event is being organised by the West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN). The event focusses on people with a Learning Disability and autistic people (LeDeR).

Research has shown that on average, people with a learning disability and autistic people die earlier than the general public, and do not receive the same quality of care as people without a learning disability or who are not autistic. Improving the recognition and management of people with a Learning Disability and autistic people through the introduction of Deterioration management tools can really make a difference to the outcomes of this vulnerable group of people.

We invite Learning Disability Care Homes as well as Care Homes with Learning Disability residents in the West Midlands region to join us in refresher training on our online training on testing approaches, tools and methodologies that help in improving health outcomes for residents with Learning Disabilities.

The session will include tools designed to help staff to spot the early soft signs of deterioration, escalate concerns and improve timely intervention. Extend this invitation to as many staff within your organisation or to partner organisations, as well as people who you feel would benefit from this training session.

To book a place for the event, use the link below:

Managing deterioration in Learning Disability Homes - 27 February 2023

Registrants will receive a diary invitation approximately 2 working days before the event. If you have not received your link by then, email laura.mould@wmahsn.org

13. The Managers Conference 2023 13-14 March 2023 (information for all providers)

The National Care Forum (NCF) and Skills for Care, in collaboration with ARC England, are holding the Managers Conference from 13-14 March 2023. This conference is designed for managers, with managers.

This event, with overnight accommodation and a full day conference, will champion and support the crucial role managers play in adult social care. It will bring together managers from across the country to share knowledge, ask questions and network with colleagues.

The programme includes panel discussion and practical workshops. Alison Murray, Deputy Director of Adult Social Care at Care Quality Commission, will be speaking at the conference.

Find out more below:

The Managers Conference 2023 (skillsforcare.org.uk)

14. Skills for Care List of forthcoming events and opportunities for social care businesses (information for all providers)

A list of forthcoming events and opportunities for social care businesses over the next few weeks has been circulated to providers. If you do not have a copy, email marketintelligence@birmingham.gov.uk

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