How can you make a significant difference?

Dear member,

Following previous winter pressures, HCPA have collaborated with HCC on how you can provide significant support for bed pressures and effectively utilise HCPA tools and services for this winter.

Here are some important reminders.

Herts Care Search – Are your vacancies up-to-date?

If you are registered with Herts Care Search, please make sure that you update your bed vacancy data promptly. This will ensure that anyone looking for a care home/nursing bed has accurate information at their fingertips. It is crucial, at this particularly challenging time, that the system is accurate and up-to-date as this will help the people we want to support leave hospital as quickly as possible.

What is Herts Care Search?

Herts Care Search offers a searchable database of residential and nursing homes in Hertfordshire and the surrounding areas.

It is an easy to use online system that care providers can use to advertise their bed availability and fill their vacancies. This is completely free for HCPA members. The system is used by both the local authority and the general public to quickly find residential care with vacancies.

» Visit the Herts Care Search webpage

Care Home Impartial Assessor – Support and ease quicker discharge from hospital

What is a Care Home Impartial Assessor?

A registered nurse who works on behalf of Hertfordshire Care Homes with the Integrated Discharge Teams and wards at Lister and Princess Alexandra Hospital to impartially assess new, returning or self-funded local care home residents and simplify their transition from the hospital to local Care Homes.

We hear all too often about delayed discharges from hospital so we are delighted to have received funding for the Care Home Impartial Assessor service to represent private Care Homes and conduct comprehensive assessments on their behalf.

Please Note: This service will be running at all three hospitals mentioned above over the Christmas period.

Manage and Prevent Influenza – Are your staff vaccinated?

Immunisation should be provided to healthcare and social care workers in direct contact with clients.

Employers responsibilities:

  • Responsible for ensuring arrangements are in place to vaccinate their care services and social care workers who have direct client contact
  • Employers should promote the benefits of vaccinations to front line workers by giving staff balanced and factually correct information – Please refer to our myth busting sheet overleaf
  • Help staff understand that if they refuse to be vaccinated they put themselves, their families and the people they care for at unnecessary risk

Social care staff can now be provided with a FREE flu vaccination if they are directly involved in the care of patients or clients. These are available from their registered GP or any participating community pharmacy. To find a participating pharmacy, click here. Best practice is to contact the pharmacy or surgery in advance. Proof of role will be required. Please find letter template available here for you to provide to your staff. Ask your staff to have the letter signed by the GP or Pharmacist to show proof of vaccination so that this can be recorded by the home.

» Click here to find out more
» View our guidence on what to do to manage a flu outbreak

Notification of change to the out of hours on-call number for the East of England Health Protection Team

Please note the attached letter from the Deputy Director of Health Protection advising of a change to the out of hours on-call number.

If you have any queries regarding this letter please contact Caroline Lester, Senior Health Protection Nurse, 0300 303 8537 Option 1.

Throughout the winter period, there is always an increase in hospital attendance and admissions across all acute settings in Herts and neighbouring hospitals. This leads to significant pressures on the health systems. Herts Adult Care Services will work closely with all acute trusts to try and support and find alternate care provision for those that can be discharged. However, during other winters, availability can be short for social care services as well; we are seeking your help in trying to proactively share availability to speed up any potential discharge options that the social work teams can access.

Therefore, please make sure your Herts Care Search profile is up-to-date with your bed availability and you utilise the Care Home Impartial Assessor to quicken safe discharge.

Please look out for further emails over the winter period.

Thank you for your help during this period.

Hertfordshire Health and Community Services | Tel 01438 844353 | @Mwharvey

» View the updated contact information