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Three things will make 2021 a big year for social care…

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Contributing authors: Hazel Phillips and Mei-Ling Huang

2020 has been one of the most traumatic years for the social care sector in living memory. Whilst its impact will be long felt, care providers will be looking for clarity, security and a return to normality in 2021.

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Board Briefing for social care businesses: Legal resilience for the second Covid wave

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Contributing authors: Hazel Phillips and Mei-Ling Huang

Board Briefing for the Social Care sector

It feels like a long time since March. During the first wave, care services were put under unprecedented pressures. Now that the second wave is upon us, our Health & Social Care team is providing an update on the state of play in key areas.

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Furlough Scheme extended as care sector prepares for national lockdown

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care-home

The Government has announced a new national lockdown for England from 5 November to 2 December which has led to significant changes to the employment support schemes available to employers.

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Care UK ordered to refund £1 million in fees to its residents

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The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) issued its final guidance on care contracts’ consumer law compliance and consumer law obligations in November 2018 (Guidance).

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Extended support for adult social care

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Social-care

The Adult Social Care Infection Control Fund (“Fund”) was set up in May 2020 to support adult social care providers to reduce the rate of Covid-19 transmissions  – particularly relating to reducing the need for movement of staff between different sites.

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Essential care sector update on National Minimum Wage compliance

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Calculating wages and taxes

A flurry of recent court rulings on compliance with the National Minimum Wage (“NMW”) highlight the complexity of this area of law and the need for care providers to check their pay arrangements are compliant.

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Survey highlights importance of robust Covid-19 whistleblowing policy

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Care worker

A recent study by the Daily Express indicated that there has been a significant increase (66%) in complaints made by care staff to CQC during the Covid-19 pandemic, with the majority of concerns raised relating to infection control, social distancing and a lack of PPE.

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Return of shielders hampered by lack of Government guidance for care providers

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Return to work after coronavirus

From 1 August, the Government “paused” shielding for the clinically extremely vulnerable. Shielding employees can return to work if their workplace is “Covid-secure” but should work from home wherever possible.

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Visiting supported living settings during Covid

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Visiting supported living settings

Following on from her blog about rights and responsibilities for care home visits during Covid, partner and co-head of Health & Social Care team Hazel Phillips is highlighting some of the issues that arise when considering visits to supported living settings.

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Care home visitors: striking the balance between rights and responsibilities

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Care home visitors

With many care homes starting to think about opening up to visitors again, it is important that operators strike the right balance between their legal responsibilities to safeguard their staff and residents and the rights of their residents and families.

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Protecting healthcare from the legal ramifications of Covid-19

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The Coronavirus has challenged us like nothing before and the operational strain is more than anyone should have to bear. Unfortunately, the legal reverberations from this pandemic could go on for some time, even after we have controlled the spread of the virus.

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Key dates for care providers using the furlough scheme

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Key dates for care providers

With approximately 8.4m jobs furloughed, roughly ¼ of the total jobs in the UK, and 1m employers furloughing, costing the Government £15bn, it was inevitable that some changes would have to be made to the furlough scheme. However, the announcements are less draconian than many had feared.

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