Care homes in Scotland can look forward to more support and collaborative working – but more scrutiny – under plans to improve clinical and care support for care homes.
In a letter, the Scottish directorate for social care and National Care Service development makes a number of recommendations taking forward good practice established during the pandemic. This includes the following:
- ongoing review of local care home bed availability and viability, including workforce and financial risks, taking a whole system approach which appropriately balances risks and considers provider as well as individual service viability/sustainability.
- refreshed contingency planning for care home closures recognising that multiple care homes may fail due to viability
- sight of a strategic plan for commissioning care homes as developed by local Social Care Contracts and Commissioning teams
- work with providers to understand why care home beds are not being used and to put supports in place, for example improvement support or support with staffing where appropriate
- escalating concerns nationally through the recently redesigned “Director of Public Health” care home monitoring template which now focuses on viability and pressures.
Care homes in Scotland are also advised of future work to consider the development of improvement models and support in the social care sector, in particular the roles of clinical and professional leads including executive nurse directors in context of a collaborative improvement approach.