News for care providers

Keep up to date with all the latest news for providers of care and support for adults.

We would like to acknowledge and apologise for delays currently being experienced in setting up, authorising and closing Care Package Line Items (CPLIs – formerly known as Service Agreements) on our social care system.  We regret that these issues are causing delays in your payments and other billing issues.

These issues, along with the additional pressures of the winter period for our county’s hospitals and services, have created a backlog of work that we are working hard to clear.  We have provided extra resources to our Brokerage Service (Care Arranging Service) to process care packages and increase our capacity to authorise payments for care during this time.

As we work through this backlog we are prioritising outstanding payments and urgent cases (including hospital discharges and cases involving urgent transport).  We are working hard to add CPLIs to our system every day, but recognise that during this time you may experience delays in seeing newer CLPIs being processed.  Please appreciate that we are dealing with older cases first, and that if you are experiencing issues with such cases you should contact Paul Gibbs in the Brokerage Service (paul.gibbs@norfolk.gov.uk).

We also recognise that there are currently a number of deceased service users in the system with active CPLIs.  We have a record of these and have added a dedicated resource within the Brokerage Service to ensure correct end dates for care are added to the system.  Providers of residential and supported living care who have received payments for deceased service users should expect to see adjustments to future payments to correct this.

We apologise for any inconvenience you have experienced during this time, and ask for your patience and co-operation as we move forward with our new social care, finance and Provider Portal systems.  We are confident that in the long term the new systems and processes we have developed will result in greater levels of information sharing and accuracy, swifter payments and improved communication.

We continue to add new providers to the Provider Portal, giving you a window to see the information held in our finance system.  The Portal is already playing an important role in how we update and share information as and when it becomes available, as well as giving you a new way to communicate issues to different teams in Norfolk County Council.  We encourage providers of home care and day services to continue using the conversations function within the Provider Portal as we work through the current backlog.

As you will be aware, the health system is currently under significant pressure; cold weather and winter related illnesses such as Norovirus and Flu are adding to these pressures and there is strain across the health and social care system especially in relation to safe discharges from hospital.

With this in mind, and Easter rapidly approaching, we have agreed a package of financial measures to support both home care and care home providers to respond swiftly to requests to take on care packages relating to hospital discharges by re-introducing our one off capacity payments.

In order to support timely and safe discharges from hospital, the one-off capacity incentive payments will run from Friday 16 February to Friday 6 April 2018 inclusive.

The incentive payments are for discharges only, this includes picking up new or resuming care packages from the hospitals.

We would ask that you use these financial incentives to support greater capacity and responsiveness within your organisation.  Facilitating a speedy discharge for people from hospital, either to their own home or to residential care, is essential to support people with maintaining their independence, but also supports the continued operation of our emergency care system.  Capacity Incentive payments will be administered and authorised by the Service Brokerage team and paid in line with your current payment schedule.

Download the documents below for more information

After some recent changes at Norfolk County Council and the way the Service Brokerage Team operate, you will no longer be receiving Service Users ISO or Service Agreement documentation via the post to your establishment. The ISO will be published on the Provider Portal under the ‘Contract Documents’ tab.

The Service Users Care Documentation such as Care Plans, Support Plans and other associated Client Assessment Paperwork will be sent via a Conversation in the Provider Portal from the Service brokerage Team. These conversations can be found under the ‘Actions and Change Requests’ tab.

We are currently experiencing issues with the accept/reject function in the Provider Portal. If you are seeing contract documents that need accepting or rejecting please do not action these by accepting or rejecting at this time.  There is a small bug in the system that is being looked into as a matter of urgency, further communication will go out when the bug has been fixed.

You can access information about using the Provider Portal by following this link, where you will find user handbooks and online training videos.

If you have any queries, please contact Ryan Blackwell (ryan.blackwell@norfolk.gov.uk) or the Payments Team.

One of Norfolk County Council’s Improved Better Care Funding initiatives, the Enhanced Home Support Service, opened for referrals on Monday 5 February 2018. This small and targeted Social Care initiative aims to reduce delayed discharges from the three acute hospitals, as well as prevent unnecessary admissions from the community. The pilot Service is free for up to 72 hours and is not means tested.  However, if an individual requires support after 72 hours a fee may be charged.

The service will be piloted over a three year period and is delivered in partnership with three Home Support Framework providers: Allied Health Care, Carers Trust and Carewatch.

The Enhanced Home Support Service will provide:

  • Unplanned, short term, same day home support for up to 72 hours across all five CCG areas in Norfolk.
  • 24 hours/7 day home support with access to the service for new referrals between 8am-8pm
  • Person-centred, enabling support in the person’s home, which is focused on stabilising and supporting the individual, so they can live safely and independently at home.

Eligibility criteria:

Those accessing the Service need to meet the following criteria:

  • Be over 18 and a resident living in Norfolk
  • Have been assessed and confirmed as medically mobilised and ready to be discharged from hospital with short term support or
  • In need of short term support to avoid being admitted or readmitted to hospital.

Referral Pathway:

 The Enhanced Home Support Service will be co-ordinated by dedicated assessors based at the three acute hospitals and practitioners in the community locality teams.

 Aims of the Enhanced Home Support Service:

The aim is to provide:

  • A responsive and flexible service
  • A service which is enabling and suited to individuals with a low level of short term need i.e. to get back on their feet, rather than intensive support involving double-ups and numerous times per day.
  • Enabling Home Support services including meal preparation, personal care, shopping, welfare checks, medication monitoring and facilitation of the access to and the use of community resources.
  • A service that promotes the use of equipment and Assistive Technology where appropriate.

The impact of the initiative will be tightly monitored and reviewed to ensure it meets the aims of the pilot.

For more information about Enhanced Home Support Service please contact:

Hanne Lene Schierff - Commissioning Manager - Central team:  hannelene.schierff@norfolk.gov.uk

Our Norfolk Care Careers website is dedicated to educating people about careers in care and is also a platform for our providers of care to advertise vacancies for free.

We have a vacancies page which lists current available jobs that we are aware of in Norfolk.  If you would like to advertise your vacancies on there, please contact norfolkcarejobs@norfolk.gov.uk and we will set an account up for you.

Once you have an account, adding a vacancy to Norfolk Care Careers is quick and simple to do and is a great way to advertise and promote your vacancies.

We have developed a simple process to enable you to provide our Brokerage Service (formerly Care Arranging Service) with updates on bed vacancies in your care home.  Using our user friendly web form you can inform us of current capacity in your care home and help us support consumer choice and prompt placements.

We work with service users to identify accredited care homes that meet their requirements, and to help inform this process and support prompt placements we are asking you to submit valuable market intelligence to us using this short and simple web form.  By supplying us with this information you will be helping us to quickly and efficiently arrange care within the market.

Up until now our Brokerage Service staff received requests to find beds in a given area, they rang all the homes within a 10 mile radius of that location and extended this area depending on the availability they managed to find.  Using this new web form to update your information as soon as you have a change in your availability (which may be daily in many cases) should save you receiving telephone calls from not only our brokerage staff but also from social care workers looking to find urgent placements, such as for those needing to be discharged from hospital.

The data you submit via the web form will only be accessible to teams within Norfolk County Council to help support consumer choice and prompt placements when we are arranging care.  This information will not be published or be in anyway publicly accessible.  It will be used internally to understand where there is capacity in the care home market to meet the demands of service users.

Norfolk County Council currently supports workforce development activity for providers in consultation with the Norfolk Strategic Workforce Development Partnership. This group identifies needs and provides grant support for services such as The Norfolk Care Brokerage.

Workforce Development Funding will contribute to developing a workforce that is aligned to our market shaping activity and Promoting Independence Strategy. The funding is available to support “One social care workforce where boundaries are permeable – NCC, independent sector providers, voluntary sector providers, personal assistants, carers, health colleagues.”

Since our initial funding allocation in 2016 we are now in a position to define the final area for grant funding, as outlined on our Workforce Development Fund page. Applications for this grant to be received by 28 February 2018.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect in May 2018. This new law gives individuals new rights and substantially increases the penalties for non-compliance. The GDPR applies to any organisation which processes data about individuals whether personnel, customers, prospects, website users or others.

Two seminars are being held on 1 March – Ipswich, Trinity Park, Suffolk Showground and 6 March – Norwich, Norwich City Football Club. Both seminars run from 5-7pm and are free to attend. The seminars will inform you about GDPR and prepare you for when it comes in to effect.

Why should I attend?

James Tarling is a Partner at Ashtons Legal. He is an experienced lawyer who has specialised in helping businesses develop compliant data management systems and processes, as well as helping organisations manage data breaches.

In this practical session James will be cutting through the myths and misinformation about GDPR and will concentrate on the key issues that you need to know and what you need to do. The GDPR is an important change to existing data protection law requiring action from businesses and organisations. However, the good news is that James will guide you through the steps that you need to take now to ensure that your business complies when the GDPR comes into effect this May.

Who should attend?

Care home owners, managers and those responsible for IT, HR and any data custodians within their business, whether large or small.

Booking

To book please contact toby.whittacker-cook@ashtonslegal.co.uk or on 01603 703094. You can also book online at www.ashtonslegal.co.uk/events. If you cannot make the seminar yourself, please feel free to pass this invitation onto a colleague. These seminars are free to attend and plenty of tea, coffee and cake will be supplied.

We are in the process of updating our database of care provider email addresses to ensure that all care providers receive appropriate and timely information from us.

Currently, many of the email addresses we hold on our database are personalised, for example addresses such as fred.bloggs@btinternet.com or fred.bloggs@lovelycarehome.com. 

Often, these types of email addresses are only relevant whilst the individual is employed by the care provider concerned and we have numerous instances of emails being returned to us as ‘undeliverable’.

Good practice would encourage the use of generic email addresses e.g. mail@lovelycarehome.co.uk or manager@lovelycarehome.co.uk.

We are asking organisations to provide a generic email address to us as shown above.

If you cannot avoid personalised email addresses we would ask that you inform us when your nominated email address becomes invalid and provide an alternative.

We will also be sending you an email regarding this matter to the current email address we hold on file for you. Please check the accuracy of this and let us know whether the email address is current and correct. If you do not receive an email, this may be an indication that we do not have an up-to-date email address for your organisation.

In instances where your organisation has several different email addresses, we would ask that you select one or two email addresses only to receive future communications from us for distribution within your organisation as you deem appropriate.

If you are concerned that you do not currently receive emails from us or if you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us via the below email address:

alexandra.holt@norfolk.gov.uk  

In light of the recent severe weather Norfolk has experienced, we want to make sure our providers know the best numbers to contact should they experience a power outage.

105 is the new number to call should you experience a power cut.

It is free of charge and will put you through to your local network operator who can give you help and advice.  More information is available at www.powercut105.com.

 

In order to support timely and safe discharges from hospital we have agreed a package of financial measures to support both home care and care home providers to take on care packages related to hospital discharges.

Given the situation within our hospitals in the eastern region we have agreed to extend these measures until 31 January 2018.

We ask that you use these financial incentives to support greater capacity and responsiveness within your organisation.  Helping to discharge people from hospital speedily, either to their own home or to residential care, is essential to help people maintain their independence and also supports the continued operation of our emergency care system.

More about the financial incentives for: