Deadline approaching: Alternative fuel energy support for care providers
The Non-Domestic Alternative Fuel Payment scheme
This scheme provides support for all UK non-domestic consumers using alternative fuels such as kerosene for energy, that are not on the gas grid. This includes commercial businesses, voluntary sector organisations including charities and community interest companies and public sector organisations such as schools, hospitals and care homes. Kerosene is a significant energy source in the UK, with many organisations and ~5% of households using kerosene for heating.
£150 payments for all UK non-domestic consumers using alternative fuels that are not on the gas grid
For care providers who are connected to the electricity grid, the fixed payment of £150 will be paid to you automatically by your electricity supplier. You do not need to make an application.
Care providers not connected to the electricity grid, will need to apply for the £150 fixed payment. Apply now at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-energy-bill-support-for-non-domestic-properties
£750-£5,800 Further “top up” payment for higher users of Kerosene
Higher users of Kerosene heating oil, defined as over 10,000 litres per year, will be eligible to apply. We believe many care homes using Kerosene will meet this threshold. Providers will need to provide evidence to support their claim for an additional payment based on the amount of Kerosene they use. Further payments (above £5,800) are also available for the highest users.
Please note that the additional payments are for Kerosene only and do not cover other fuels such as liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) gas oil or red diesel. Anyone in any doubt about the fuel they are using should contact their supplier.
Where possible, all applications should be completed on-line.
PLEASE NOTE NEW APPLICATIONS TO THIS SCHEME CAN ONLY BE ACCEPTED UP TO 28th APRIL 2023.
Further information and the application form is available here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-energy-bill-support-for-non-domestic-properties
This page contains information, which we published in the PEN newsletter, but which does not fit into other parts of this website or is relevant to all sectors.
England to return to Plan A
The government has announced that England’s COVID-19 measures will revert from Plan B to Plan A on Thursday 27 January.
Insurance advice for care providers
The Association of British Insurers and the British Insurers Brokers’ Association jointly published guidance setting out practical steps which care providers can take to access the appropriate insurance cover with reference to the pandemic. If your insurance is due for renewal in the next few months, do take a look.
Care and health worker parking permit
Are you in a team using the Care and Health Worker Parking Permit?
For managers and users of the Care and Health Worker Parking Permit.
Changes to NHS parking pass
The NHS COVID parking passes were originally intended for temporary use during the COVID-19 emergency response period by NHS staff members, health or social care workers, or NHS Volunteer Responders. Following the publication of the Government’s roadmap for the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, from Monday 21 June we will no longer accept NHS COVID parking pass in our Devon County Council car parks, and on street parking in resident only spaces, limited waiting spaces and on street pay & display spaces.
Eligible staff can apply for the DCC care and health worker permit on our website.
After Thursday 21 June 2021 we will enforce against cars we find displaying them in spaces they can no longer use.
Digital COVID-19 passport scam
The latest coronavirus scam is currently circulating on social media asking people for payment in exchange for a ‘coronavirus digital passport’.
The email claims to come from the NHS and says it will “allow you to travel safely and freely around the world without having to self-isolate” if you’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine or have recently recovered from the virus.
The email states “who is eligible” and asks people to click a button at the bottom of the email to access their “digital passport.” The link will then take you to a fake NHS website, where it will ask for personal information and payment details towards ‘an admin fee’.
What to do?
- If you receive this email please forward it onto PISHING.GOV.UK.
- If you have disclosed bank account details you should contact your bank immediately and notify action fraud.
Ventilation of indoor spaces guidance
Research has shown that good ventilation of indoor spaces is one of the most effective things we can all do the prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Public Health England COVID-19 action card
This document provides definitions and what actions to take in a COVID-19 situation.
Coronavirus local dashboard and data
Report on confirmed cases and deaths at a district level.
Shielding and protecting extremely vulnerable people
- National guidance on shielding and protecting extremely vulnerable people
- Reference-only version of letter from the government to people who are clinically extremely vulnerable.
Letter on extension of CEV cohort including advice on shielding and vaccination.
- Devon County Council and the District Councils in Devon are ready to support residents who are identified as being ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’. Information about the range of support available to people identified as being clinically extremely vulnerable is published on our website.
- The attached letter (26 May 2020) contains guidance and information on shielding clients during COVID-19. This letter is an addition to an email sent out from DCC’s Procurement Team on 15 May 2020 and addresses providers’ comments and queries.
New appeal to car sharers and people in the workplace
Case numbers are coming down, but we’re still seeing positive cases of Coronavirus in workplaces. This has prompted a fresh appeal from Steve Brown, Director of Public Health Devon, asking people at work, and car sharers in particular, to take extra precautions.
One in three people don’t have any symptoms of coronavirus and it can easily spread in the small enclosed space of a vehicle. So avoid car sharing with those outside your household or support bubble. Think twice before getting a lift to work with colleagues or taking a friend or relative grocery shopping or to a medical appointment, unless they are part of your household or support bubble.
If you have to car share, please follow these simple steps to reduce the risk of spreading the virus:
😷 Everyone should wear face coverings
↔️ Sit as far apart as possible
♀ Share with the same small group of people each time
💨 Open windows for ventilation
Wash or sanitise your hands before and after your journey.
Clean the car between journeys, paying attention to touch points such as door handles.
Car sharing advice poster
Devon County Council has produced a simple poster with car-sharing advice for display in workplaces and elsewhere. It reminds any car-sharers to: wear face coverings, share only with the same small group, keep windows open, wash or sanitise hands before and after journeys and clean the car after journeys, including internal and external handles.
Torbay and South Devon Speech and Language Therapy Referrals
There is a new referral criteria, swallowing assessment criteria, and referral form for care homes to access this service.
Proactive media support for providers
If any provider has a story to tell in their press and social media and wants support to reach their chosen audience then DCC and NHS Devon will do our best to help. Whether it’s good practice you wish to share, a celebration of success or even a statement to counteract misinformation spread by others, then if you send us your ideas we will see what we can do to support you in telling your story. Please send ideas to Jean Almond, and if your ideas are contained in a newsletter then you can send her the publication, identifying which issue you think is worthy of media attention. Likewise, if you are using social media and think your posts could be shared more widely always remember to tag them with the relevant DCC ‘handle’: Twitter – @DevonCC, Facebook – @OfficialDevonCC, Instagram – @devoncountycouncil, LinkedIn – @devon-county-council. The #WeAreDevon can also be added to posts. Jean’s email address for good new story suggestions is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Letter to unpaid carers
We recognise that this is a stressful and uncertain time for carers, so we have written this letter to them (24 March) to outline the support that is available to help them to continue caring during the current coronavirus situation.
Safeguarding Adults – Provider Forum Response
During the COVID-19 crisis, it is particularly important to safeguard adults with care and support needs. It is suggested that adults with care and support needs may be more vulnerable to abuse and neglect by others during this time from those seeking to exploit disadvantages due to age, disability, mental or physical impairment or illness. This is a time when we must all be extra vigilant and try to pick up any early signs that something isn’t right.
The Coronavirus Act
The Coronavirus Act (2020) and associated Care Act easements: guidance for local authorities (see Annex D) do not alter or affect the safeguarding protections within the Care Act (2014).
Safeguarding Adult Concerns
You must continue to raise safeguarding adults concerns in the usual way, by either contacting Care Direct 0345 155 1007 or by completing a safeguarding adult referral accessed via the Devon Safeguarding Adult Partnership website.
Immediate Protection Planning
During Covid-19 it is especially important that you are clear about the risks, actions taken to manage immediate risks. That these actions are clearly recorded, evidencing the action you have taken to support immediate protection planning.
Undertaking Safeguarding Enquiries
Safeguarding adult enquiries and whole service safeguarding enquiries will continue to take place as per due process. Most meetings, due to COVID 19 social distancing measures, are likely to be held via teleconference. In high risk cases, it is likely to be necessary to undertake essential / non deferrable face to face visits to the client/provider. In exploring the need to undertake essential / non deferrable visit, the safeguarding adult enquiry lead will refer to DCC guidance about essential and non-deferrable home visits.
Staying safe online
The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has published a range of useful materials that aim to help us all to protect ourselves from cyber threats including a Top Tips for staff on staying safe online infographic, a free eLearning module, access to the Cyber Protect team and the Action Fraud 24/7 reporting service.
Find out more at the NCSC website and report incidents to the Action Fraud national cyber crime reporting centre
Free access to Microsoft Teams using NHSmail
In order to access online support from the NHS, providers must have an NHSmail account. The usual requirements for such accounts have been relaxed by NHS Digital and providers can have a recognised secure email system which will allow patient identifiable data to be shared with healthcare services, plus access to Microsoft Teams for video-conferencing and related activities.
The NHSmail account request process, including support with applications, is detailed on the Digital Social Care website.