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The waiting game

All care homes should have named clinician by Friday, says Government

The Government has said that every care home should have a named clinician by Friday this week, as part of a 50-page plan to 'rebuild' amidst the coronavirus epidemic.

In the plan, which is aimed at clarifying the announcement on easing the lockdown made by Prime Minister Boris Johnson yesterday, the Government said that its 'number one priority for adult social care is infection control during the Covid-19 pandemic'.

As part of this it has highlighed the clinical support that it has asked GP practices to provide, including weekly virtual ward rounds.

The document said: 'The Government is accelerating the introduction of a new service of enhanced health support in care homes from GPs and community health services, including making sure every care home has a named clinician to support the clinical needs of their residents by 15 May.

'The NHS is supporting care homes to take up video consultation approaches, including options for a virtual ward.'

Previously, NHS England had said it may bring in 'regulatory provisions' to ensure all care homes receive a virtual weekly ward round unless 'coverage' is achieved across the country, but there was no mention of a named clinician until a webinar for GPs last Thursday.

A slide presented at the webinar said that the Covid-19 care home support service model 'should be established as soon as possible, and by 15/05 at the latest'.

It added: 'To deliver this support, immediate steps need to be taken to support individual practices and community health service teams to organise themselves according to their local areas or networks.

'As part of this process, networks should identify a named clinical lead for each care home.'

It comes as GPs had been left confused as to whether or not the new care home service formed part of the Primary Care Network (PCN) DES.

Initially, NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens said they would 'bring forward from October to May 2020 the national roll-out of key elements of the primary and community health service-led Enhanced Health in Care Homes service'.

However, NHS England medical director for primary care Dr Nikita Kanani later said that the service is not part of the DES for now but is only 'clinical guidance'.

The BMA's GP Committee told Pulse it had not been consulted and called on NHS England to reverse the 'unacceptable' plans.

Speaking in Thursday's webinar, NHS England's primary care medical director Dr Nikki Kanani said: 'The key components of the support that we're asking you to offer are the weekly check-in - some way of making sure that your patients or rather the staff who are looking after those residents have a way of contacting you - development of personalised care and support plans and particularly around treatment escalation plans and end of life care plans, and then provision of pharmacy and medication support.

'You can do this as a practice but it's going to work really well if you can do this at a PCN level.'

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Readers' comments (38)

  • DO they think that by looking at name of clinician corona virus will get scared and not infect its resident?????
    When will NHSE understand that if they want to bring infection rate under control in Care homes then what they need is to supply care home workers with adequate PPE on regular basis. By allocating named GP/ clinician wont do a damn thing.

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  • Hmm, it would seem that the Government's "number 1 priority" is trying to reverse some of the recent bad press around their management of C19 in the care sector.

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  • Hooray, another excellent piece of work. 5 PCN’s and numerous care homes in our area.

    Who does care home respond to if patient is registered with different GP/PCN? What if advice is confusing/contradictory?

    Quicker my AW8 is finalised the better!

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  • The Government has said that every care home should have a named clinician by Friday this week,to give a course of antibiotics 24 hours before admitting every deteriorating case lacking DNACPR to the nearest district general.

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  • @carfentanyl lol sounds like a good care plan, perhaps leave a bin of doxycycline in the lobby and instructions how to get to ED

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  • How does having a named clinician reduce the infection rate in care homes, protect the care home workers, the residents, the Gp, community matrons etc from covid-19 if all parties involved do not have adequate resources which includes standard PPEs, world class sanitation in our care homes and making our care homes fit for purpose.
    This is another tick box exercise to lay the blame at the door step of the GPs.

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  • In the spirit of this why not have the medical director of the community trust as named - box ticked...

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  • NOW WATCH THE WORKFORCE ROLL OVER AND COMPLY

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  • Usual bull shit par excellence ...
    Knee jerk reaction, as most things coming out of Whitehall at present .
    We’ve had named physicians for each nursing and residential home for years. Will see everybody each month routinely , as well as those more urgent.
    Though this is helpful , doesn’t get them PPE or anybody tested.
    Just today had care home worker asking us for testing, as their employer couldn’t get any testing arranged , shambles .
    As for weekly care home contact / visit , virtual or otherwise , this will squander clinicians time whilst funding cut, as no longer able to charge retainer. A very workable system, that has worked for years, is being terminated . Not to mention our weekly paramedic visits pre Covid19, I guess they will also have to go and we have to now find our paramedics something else to do, or make them redundant, whilst we are flogging ourself a for reduced funding , also reducing GP availability elsewhere. Seeing folk weekly, who don’t feed seeing just for the heck of it. Bonkers !

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  • someone has been on the herbal stuff... apart from the munchies ...
    it makes you very relaxed initially.... then later on (after too much of the stuff) have strange thougts ......
    hmmmm........

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