Coronavirus in Leicester

Get the latest information and advice

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Recruitment, managing staff and volunteering

Information and guidance on who is considered a key worker and details on recruitment and coronavirus testing.

Further information

Training

Local health and social care partners have developed an infection, prevention and control training presentation for Home Care and Supported Living providers. The training presentation covers the following subjects:

  • Standards of Infection Prevention and Control
  • Principles of Hand Hygiene
  • The use of PPE including ‘sessional’ use
  • Problems with using PPE
  • Cleaning and Decontamination
  • Disposal of Waste
  • Handling of Laundry

The training presentation is available on the Leicestershire County Council website (PDF).

We would encourage strongly the use of the presentation within your training programme with staff.

Further training resources can be found below:

Additional workforce

To help support any staff shortages we are promoting additional care jobs on Leicester Employment Hub, which has a dedicated social care recruitment page. This will show job opportunities and will share CVs from care job seekers with those providers who express interest. Alternatively, we can direct people to your HR section if you prefer.

Leicester Employment Hub has many contacts within the market, Job Centre Plus, and training providers, and could be useful in identifying potential new staff.

If you are interested in the offer:

  1. Email us with job descriptions and details of salary, training provided and the number of posts you are looking for within your area.
  2. Confirm if you want Leicester Employment Hub to receive CVs on your behalf – if so, we will need an email address/contact details to forward these on to you.
  3. Confirm if you want any enquiries directed to your HR department and their telephone number/contact details.

Please email your response and we will direct that information forward.

Volunteer support for providers with staff shortages

The National Care Force is a free online platform for finding volunteers to help with cooking, child care, driving, running errands and other such assistance, freeing up frontline staff to focus on immediate care.

Providers can sign up on The National Care Force website to post opportunities and gain access to local volunteers. 

COVID-19 testing for social care staff

The government is now offering testing to all essential workers who are self-isolating because they or a member of their household have coronavirus symptoms. Workers can self-refer for testing or be referred by their employer.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has been contacting adult social care providers to book COVID-19 testing appointments at a national testing centre. This is aimed at any staff who are self-isolating with symptoms of coronavirus. Further information on this testing programme can be found on the CQC Website.

Test and trace for social care staff

The NHS Test and Trace service will be contacting those who have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus to tell them to self-isolate. With staff often coming into close contact with the people they provide care for, the Director General for Adult Social Care has issued this letter (PDF) outlining how the Test and Trace guidance applies to the care sector. In short, a staff member who has been caring for a person who has tested positive for COVID19 or who has symptoms of COVID19 while the staff member was wearing appropriate PPE will most likely not need to self-isolate. Such cases will be escalated to the local public health.

EU Settlement Scheme

Most EU citizens need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) to ensure they can continue to live, work and access funding and services in the UK after 30 June 2021. The Care Provider Alliance (CPA) is calling on all social care organisations to ensure their staff and people who use their services are aware of the EUSS and how to apply. Read the CPA guidance

Mental health

Read: COVID-19: health and wellbeing of the adult social care workforce

This is an anxious time for everybody, but for staff in the care sector there may be added pressures and uncertainty. It is important to find practical ways to support our wellbeing. Tips for looking after your wellbeing, as well as advice on where you can get extra support, can be found on our Coronavirus and our mental wellbeing page.

Key Link is a new, free to access counselling service formed to offer online or telephone counselling to any frontline and key workers who need support during the COVID-19 outbreak. To access this offer, staff should register on the Key Link website.

DBS checks for new staff

To mitigate the impact of COVID-19, the following temporary measures have been put in place by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to help health and social care providers to recruit the right people as quickly as possible:

To help you to understand these changes, we recommend that you read the interim guidance on DBS and other recruitment checks on the Care Quality Commission website. 

Using the Adult First system whilst awaiting DBS certification

New members of staff who are going to work in regulated activity with adults can begin work before their DBS certificate has arrived, using the Adult First system. This should only happen if the safety of people using the service, would be put at risk if the person didn't begin their role. Providers must be able to demonstrate sound reasons for not waiting for the full DBS check before a person takes up post.

Adults First is a service that allows an individual to be checked against the adults' barring list, while waiting for the full DBS check to be completed. It can only be used where the registered umbrella body has payment on account arrangements with the DBS and email facilities. The DBS also needs to have received an application for an enhanced check with barred list information in order to process an Adult First check.

Where applications are submitted using the guidance above on Free-of-charge DBS checks and fast-track emergency checks of the Adults’ and Children’s Barred Lists, you should not submit a separate Adult First check.

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS): Regional Safeguarding Outreach

The Disclosure and Barring Service has launched a new Regional Safeguarding Outreach programme.

Beth Dale has been appointed as the Safeguarding Outreach Officer for the East Midlands region and is available to support you and your colleagues in safeguarding and safer recruitment. Beth would be happy to discuss further with you any issues or barriers you may have come across or provide any DBS information sessions you feel would be beneficial. 

Beth is able to work with you and your organisation in a number of ways, including:

  • Any phone calls or emails to clarify any DBS related queries/questions or advice
  • Attending meetings, training, conferences or visiting your organisation to have a face to face discussion
  • Developing and delivering presentations, workshops, webinars or discussions to provide an overview of the DBS
  • If you require a presentation or information session on a specific topic, Beth can also arrange for a subject matter expert to attend to provide a detailed overview on this topic
  • Taking any feedback, suggestions or comments from your experience of the DBS and feed this back into the business
  • Informing organisations and employers of their duty or power to refer individuals who may pose a future risk of harm within regulated activity. Including an overview of: 
    • How to make barring referrals
    • When should a referral be made; and
    • How DBS assess whether a referred person should be included on the Children’s and/or Adults’ Barred List. 

If you have any questions regarding the Disclosure and Barring Service or would like Beth to meet with you and your colleagues to provide any further information, please contact her directly by calling 01325 953 562 or 07867 153 500. Alternatively email elizabeth.dale@dbs.gov.uk or dbsregionaloutreach@dbs.gov.uk.