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Virtual Covid-19 training project for care homes launched

Article date - 19 May 2020

St Helens Council and St Helens Clinical Commissioning Group have joined together to offer virtual Covid-19 training to social care settings such as care homes across the borough.
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Seven staff from St Helens CCG and St Helens Council have volunteered to deliver vital training around infection prevention and control, and proper use of PPE, supporting registered care home managers to protect staff and vulnerable residents from Covid-19.

This virtual training programme will roll out to 30 care homes in the borough from today (Monday 18th May), delivered virtually via Microsoft Teams and across a range of days and hours making it as accessible as possible.

The ‘train the trainers’ scheme follows a request from NHS England’s Chief Nursing Officer at the beginning of May that CCGs, councils and resilience forums should provide guidance in some form to care homes.

Guidance on managing Covid-19 infection risk and the use of PPE in care settings has been produced by Public Health England and is widely available, but while these resources offer training via on line videos and documents, they do not provide the opportunity for a trainer to observe a trainee – and care sector workers have highlighted the need for clarity.

Karen Edwardson, Deputy Chief Nurse at NHS St Helens CCG, said: “This training is part of a national response from NHS England to stem the tide of Covid-19 transmissions in the care sector. The exceptionally quick roll out of this training has been made possible by the integrated working of both the CCG’s Quality Team and Local Authority Quality Monitoring Team.

“This will now support staff in care homes in St Helens to provide the safest care for both their residents and for the staff who care for them.”

Councillor Marlene Quinn, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, said: “We’ve been able to arrange a quality training offer in an innovative way and in such a short space of time because of the way we’re integrated with St Helens CCG, and the positive and productive working relationship we have. And it’s to the benefit of residents that we work this way.

“Care homes are facing enormous pressure to protect vulnerable residents from this deadly virus, and they need all the support we can give. While our care settings already provide exceptional care, we hope this focused training will boost their confidence and the vital skills they need to continue the fight against coronavirus.”