A letter leaked from the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (Adass) has raised concerns about testing, personal protective equipment (PPE) and funding for care workers. The letter, written on Saturday to the Department of Health and leaked to the BBC, says early deliveries of PPE have been ‘paltry’ with more recent deliveries of essential items such as masks, aprons and gloves ‘haphazard’.
The Daily Mail has reported that a Department of Health spokesperson said the government’s ‘comprehensive action plan to support the adult social care sector’ in England included ‘ramping up testing, overhauling the way PPE is being delivered to care homes and helping to minimise the spread of the virus to keep people safe’. Health Secretary Matt Hancock has insisted only 15 per cent of care homes have recorded cases. His claim is in stark contrast to statistics from Scotland, which show that 40 per cent of that country’s care homes have reported cases of the virus.
Meanwhile, locally, the Lancashire Resilience Forum (LRF) has now taken delivery of what they say is a substantial supply of equipment including aprons, gloves, masks and eye protection from central government.
Kieran Keane, chief executive of Lancaster City Council, who is responsible for logistics with the LRE said: ‘These supplies will support those working in social care to stay safe as they work tirelessly to help some of Lancashire’s most vulnerable residents during the coronavirus outbreak.’ He reported that local councils will be coordinating the deliveries.
The Lancashire Resilience Forum (LRF) is the group of organisations that work together to prepare and respond to emergencies in Lancashire. The LRF involves the emergency services; local authorities; health agencies; the Environment Agency and Maritime Coastguard Agency. Providing help to the Forum are voluntary groups; transport providers; utility providers and local businesses. When an incident occurs, such as the current Coronavirus pandemic, then all members of the LRF work together to prevent the situation from getting worse, to save lives, to relieve suffering and to return normality as soon as possible.