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Our compendium guide

The Care Inspectorate has developed a compendium of guidance and information in relation to COVID-19.

The compendium focuses on the information that is most relevant to the operation and delivery of regulated care services and is intended primarily to support our staff in advising services. However, the range of information may also be directly useful to services. 

The compendium is regularly updated as guidance is developed and revised.

Supporting short notice recruitment and deployment (Added 28 January)

The Care Inspectorate and the Scottish Social Services Council have issued a joint statement to support short notice recruitment and redeployment of staff by employers:

To support providers, who are reporting significant numbers of staff needing to self-isolate at short notice as a result of COVID-19, we’d like to reiterate the position on short notice recruitment and redeployment of staff to maintain levels of care and support.

We are continuing to apply the following.

  • Providers can deploy staff while awaiting the outcome of recruitment checks. Providers are reminded they must carry out a risk assessment and staff whose checks are pending should be mentored and supervised at all times.
  • Staff can work in a service for up to 12 months without being registered with the SSSC. This means new staff don’t have to register straight away and staff registered on one part of the Register can be redeployed into roles that fall into other Register parts. In these circumstances, providers should carry out an individual risk assessment and ensure an appropriate level of induction is given.
  • If a member of staff is not registered on a relevant part of the register within the 12 month period and there are exceptional circumstances, this may be considered a ‘reasonable excuse’ which may allow the worker to continue working. For example, a provider may temporarily promote a worker to cover an absence, such as a secondment of another employee but may not know whether the period will extend beyond a year.

PVGs

Disclosure Scotland advise that if providers have had no response from them about PVGs within 14 days, you should highlight the case details immediately to their operations management via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and they will take action as a priority.

The Care Inspectorate and the SSSC will review these temporary measures on an ongoing basis and tell providers when they change.   

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Visiting an adult care home (Added 7 January)

Guidance for the safe visiting of adult care homes during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is available here. This NHS inform page provides advice and information for family and friends of people living in adult care homes.

Helping people you care for to have video calls (Added 23 December)

This guidance for helping people you care for to have video calls outlines key points to think about and get right when you are supporting someone with a video call. It has been prepared by the Care Inspectorate along with SSPS, Scottish Care and COSLA after consultation with care home managers, clinicians and people receiving care.

Safety Huddle Tool – Turas Care Management (Added 21 August)

On Thursday the 13th August, the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport announced that the Safety Huddle – Turas Care Management tool would launch on Friday 14 August 2020.  The Scottish Government has issued guidance on the tool which you can read here.

National pilot of secure video technology to connect residents and loved ones (Added 21 August)

The Scottish Government through the Technology Enabled Care programme is funding a 12-week pilot with ten care homes across the country. The pilot aims to measure the positive impact that short video updates might have for people living in care homes, their families and care home staff. 

Letter from Jeane Freeman (Added 4 August)

The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, Jeane Freeman, has issued a letter which contains an update on national actions to support local re-establishment of respite and day care services in Scotland. 

The letter also sets out next steps in the wider reopening of adult day centres and residential respite for both children and adults.

Registration and variation guidance for our staff (Added 31 July)

To support flexibility and responsiveness to the COVID-19 pandemic, we produced contingency registration and variation guidance for our staff to follow in March 2020. We have recently updated this guidance to reflect that we are now requesting fee payments for all new registration applications, and may, under certain circumstances, carry out a site visit. You can download the updated document here.

Fees update for care service providers: July 2020 (Added 17 July)

The Care Inspectorate and the Scottish Government decided in March 2020 to defer the collection of all continuation of registration fees due by care services until July 2020. This was to support service providers to focus on the immediate Covid-19 crisis.

Following a review, we will be recommencing fee collection with immediate effect for all services except childminding, daycare of children and childcare agency services.  We will confirm the position with these childcare service types by the end of July.

We will begin contacting individual services later today. In the meantime, find out what this means for your service in our fees update.

We will update childminding, daycare of children and childcare agency services once the position with fees due by these services is confirmed and agreed with the Scottish Government. 

Letter to all care home staff from Jeane Freeman (Added 24 June)

The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, Jeane Freeman, has issued the following letters to care home staff and care home managers regarding testing staff for Covid-19.

Enriched model of psychological needs (Added 23 June)           

Over the last few weeks, we have heard how the coronavirus pandemic is impacting the mental health of people who use care services, relatives and staff. By isolating or shielding in order to protect ourselves and others, we limit our opportunities to engage with people or activities that are important to us. This can undermine our psychological wellbeing and quality of life.

We have produced a poster which outlines the key elements of the ‘Enriched Model of Psychological Needs’. This can be used within care services to help staff consider what actions they could take to help promote better psychological outcomes for the people who use services, relatives, staff and themselves.  

COVID-19 guides for social service workers (Added 17 June)

The Scottish Social Services Council have produced a range of 'bite-size' resources to support those working in healthcare during COVID-19. 

There are currently 9 guides that range from "key measures for infection prevention and control" to "support with death, dying and bereavement." 

Staffing during the COVID-19 crisis (Added 16 April) 

We’re working with the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC), the Scottish Government, COSLA and other partners to set up a system to help social care services recruit staff during this critical time. 

It’s important you remember to submit your RAG information to us. 

Social service staff are being added to the new SSSC recruitment portal daily and the SSSC will use this to assess services and match those in urgent need to care staff in your area. 

Find out more here. 

Scotland’s first Bereavement Charter for Children and Adults (added 15 April) 

The Charter together with Guidance notes and frequently asked questions (FAQs) contains 15 statements which describe what the best bereavement care and support should look like. It has been developed to support individuals and communities who struggle with the death of someone they know or someone in their community. 

 

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Adult and older people services 

Letter from the Minister on re-opening of building-based days services for adults (Added 8 June)

Kevin Stewart, Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care has written to provide clarity for services on who has authority to sign off the risk assessments required for them to re-open. You can read the letter here.

Open for Care - Visiting health, social care and other services in care homes and communal activity (added 14 April)

The Scottish Government has provided updated advice for care homes on visiting professionals and communal activities.

Scottish Covid-19 Community Health and Care Settings Infection Prevention and Control Addendum (Added 8 April)

The Scottish Covid-19 Care Home and Community Health and Care Settings Infection Prevention and Control Addendum is now available. You can access it on the National Infection Prevention and Control Manual website.

Our position on opening for visiting in care homes and supporting essential visiting (added 1 April)

People must be able and supported to have meaningful contact with loved ones and, now that the vaccination programme in care homes is well underway, it is right that care homes open again to visitors. People’s rights and needs must be the focus of decision making.

To help care homes, the Scottish Government has published Open with Care and we strongly support this. Open with Care is guidance that clearly sets out how care homes can welcome visitors safely with the appropriate measures in place.

We fully expect every care home to facilitate visiting and implement Open with Care. Having visits is essential for wellbeing and good mental health.

Read our statement in full here.

Adult care homes: visiting guidance (added 25 February)

The Scottish Government has published new guidance for care homes on visiting during the pandemic plus tools and resources on visiting, and supporting residents in homes with COVID-19.

This guidance recommends that care homes now put in place the necessary arrangements to safely resume meaningful contact between care home residents and their loved ones.

Donna Bell, Director for Mental Health & Social Care, has issued a letter to care home providers explaining the new guidance and the steps to supporting

Adult social care workshop on trauma informed practice (Added 25 February)

The Improvement Service is hosting a free virtual event on trauma informed practice in the adult social care sector on 25 March 2021.

This workshop is open to all professionals in Scotland working to improve outcomes for people requiring adult social care in their local authority area who wish to learn more about trauma-informed practice, systems and services. This includes social care workers based in care homes, in the community, personal assistants, carer centre staff and social workers.

COVID-19 care home staff testing best practice (Added 25 February)

NHS National Services Scotland has created a document that highlights the best practice of COVID-19 care home staff testing.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Visiting an adult care home (Added 7 January)

Guidance for the safe visiting of adult care homes during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is available here. This NHS inform page provides advice and information for family and friends of people living in adult care homes.

Webinar on Infection Prevention and Control/Covid-19 (Added 7 January)

NHS Education for Scotland invites all care home staff including agency staff to attend a webinar on Infection Prevention and Control/Covid-19.

The webinars will be delivered in January 2021. They are free and aim to provide staff with the key infection prevention and control information they will need to protect themselves and others in the care home setting.

Message to all staff, including EU and EEA citizens, working in social care in Scotland (Added 11 December)

The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport and the CoSLA Health and Social Care Spokesperson have issued a letter to the social care workforce.

The letter thanks them for their hard work in this unprecedented year, to reiterate to EU Citizen colleagues how valued they are and to encourage applications to the UK Government EU Settlement Scheme, and finally to highlight wellbeing support available to all social care staff.

Webinar on infection prevention and control / Covid-19 (Added 9 December)

NHS Education for Scotland is inviting all care home staff to attend a webinar on Infection Prevention and Control / Covid-19. Webinars will be delivered from December 2020 and more dates will be offered in January 2021. The webinars are free and aim to provide staff with key infection prevention and control information they will need to protect themselves and others in the care home setting.

You can find out more information on the webinars here. 

Re-opening day services for adults (Added 14 October)

The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, Jeane Freeman, has issued a letter regarding the re-opening of day services for adults.

The letter reiterates the importance of daytime support to people who need it and highlights that processes for signing off reopening plans should be well understood locally. 

Winter planning for care homes (Added 8 October)

Care Inspectorate chief executive Peter Macleod has written about winter planning during the pandemic in a letter for care home providers. You can read the letter here.

Care Home Staff Testing Feedback on DHSC Portal (Added 23 September)

A system is currently being developed to move care home staff testing in Scotland from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) portal to NHS Laboratory resources. In order to inform the process of development of and transitioning to the new system, care home providers and managers have been invited to provide feedback on their experience of using the current DHSC system and to to suggest improvements that could be made and to identify best practice you may have in place.

If you wish to participate in this feedback please complete this questionnaire and e-mail it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 5pm 30 September 2020. Please use the subject line: "Care Homes Staff Testing Questionnaire".

UK Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) guidance for the remobilisation of health and care services (Added 26 August)

The Scottish Government’s Chief Nursing Officer has issued a letter following the publication of UK-wide IPC guidance for the remobilisation of health and care services on Friday 21 August 2020.

The guidance has been issued jointly by Department of Health and Social Care, Health Protection Scotland, Public Health Scotland, Public Health Wales, Public Health Agency Northern Ireland, Public Health England and NHS England.

Phased return to visiting in adult care home services (Added 10 August)

On Saturday 8 August, the Scottish Government published updated guidance on the further relaxing of visiting in adult care homes. 

From Monday, 10 August, care home residents will be able to have up to three outdoor visitors from no more than two households provided their home meets strict criteria, with infection control measures remaining in place. 

Care home providers are also be asked to develop plans on how they can safely allow one designated indoor visitor for residents within their homes. These plans, which also must meet certain criteria, are to be submitted and signed off by the relevant health board’s Director of Public Health.

The Scottish Government has issued a letter to every adult care home in Scotland with further details of what this will mean for them which can be found here.

It confirms that care home residents will be able to receive more outdoor visitors from Monday, 10 August. From this date,  care home residents will be able to have up to three outdoor visitors from no more than two households provided their home meets strict criteria, with infection control measures remaining in place. 

Care home providers will also be asked to develop plans on how they can safely allow one designated indoor visitor for residents within their homes. These plans are to be submitted by 24 August and will be signed off by the relevant health board’s Director of Public Health.

Alzheimer Scotland’s new resources for care homes (Added 5 August)

Alzheimer Scotland has been working to respond to the main concerns expressed by callers to their 24-hour Freephone Dementia Helpline (0808 808 3000) and now have a suite of resources on their website’s Coronavirus Information Hub including podcasts and videos. A specific section provides information and resources for all those supporting people living with dementia in Scotland’s care homes.

NHS Highland guidance on nutrition (Added 21 July)

NHS Highland has produced guidance on nutrition for care homes in their area. You may find the guidance useful too and we have published them on our website. There is guidance on nutritional care for residents and guidance on nutrition and hydration for staff 

Guidance from Health Protection Scotland on COVID-19 in care homes (Added 14 July)

Health Protection Scotland has published guidance to support those working in domiciliary care settings to give advice to their staff and users of their services about COVID-19.

Care home visiting from 3 July - FAQs (Added 3 July)

On 25 June the Scottish Government published guidance and a plan for the phased return to care home visiting, starting with outdoor visiting on 3 July.

FAQs are now also available through the link above to support these visits. The FAQs will be reviewed and updated as the phased return to visiting progresses.

Dementia care during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic (Added 22 May) 

We have published a new resource ‘Dementia care during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic’ for care services to support them when caring for people living with dementia.  

New palliative care toolkit includes section on care homes (Added 11 May) 

The Scottish Government has produced a palliative care toolkit for application during the COVID-19 outbreak. While it is primarily aimed at NHS Boards, it includes a section on care homes. The toolkit does not replace existing palliative care processes and guidance documents but offers a range of practical tools to strengthen any local response to theCOVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19: updated information and guidance for care home settings (Updated 4 May) 

Health Protection Scotland have updated their COVID-19 information and guidance for care home settings. You can access this guidance here. 

COVID-19 Incident or outbreak control tool for social or community care or residential settings (Added 1 May) 

Health Protection Scotland have released a control measure tool for the control of incidents and outbreaks in Social or Community Care & Residential Settings, specific for COVID-19, and should be used accordingly, following the general advice provided in the guidance. 

Infection prevention and control COVID-19 outbreak checklist (Added 1 May) 

Health Protection Scotland have released an infection prevention and control COVID-19 outbreak checklist. The checklist is designed for the control of incidents and outbreak in healthcare settings and can be used within a COVID area when there is an individual case or multiple cases. 

Updated guidance for social or community care and residential settings (updated 22 April 2020) 

Health Protection Scotland have updated their COVID-19 guidance for social or community care and residential settings.

Updated guidance for social or community care and residential settings (updated 6 April 2020) 

Health Protection Scotland have updated their guidance for social or community care and residential settings to include information about personal protective equipment (PPE). 

 

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Children and young people services 

National guidance

You can find links to the national guidance relevant to your service below:

Updated guidance for the regulation of guardianship arrangements in boarding schools (added 13 April)

We have updated our guidance for the regulation of guardianship arrangements in boarding schools. The updated version includes guidance on home visits. 

Letter to all ELC and School-aged childcare settings (Added 6 April)

The Scottish Government has issued a letter to all ELC and School-aged childcare settings with an update on routine asymptomatic testing for staff.

Scottish Covid-19 testing support helpline (Added 1 April)

The Scottish Covid-19 testing support helpline is now part of a portfolio of helpline services offered by The National Contact Tracing Centre (NCTC). 

Issues and queries may be submitted to the Scottish COVID Testing Support Helpline:

  • Directly on 0800 008 6587 from 09:00 to 17:00 every day
  • Electronically via support button on www.covidtestingportal.scot at any time

Funding for school age childcare providers (added 23 March)

The Scottish Government has announced up to £3 million of dedicated funding through the next round of the Temporary Restrictions Fund (TRF).  This is targeted solely at providers of school aged childcare following the full reopening of nurseries and other early learning and childcare (ELC) settings.

School age childcare providers, including childminders registered to provide care for 12 or more children, will be able to access a support grant for each week in which they are open.  Grants will vary depending on their capacity and how many weeks the setting was open. 

The Scottish Government has issued a letter to registered school age childcare providers with informamtion on how to apply. 

Applications will open on 7 April 2021 and close on 4 May 2021. 

In addition, all registered settings, whether open or closed, will be able to claim a restart grant to support reopening following the end of restrictions. 

Childminding business sustainability fund: now open to applications (added 11 March)

On 9 February the Scottish Government confirmed that additional funding would be made available in order to increase the Childminding Business Sustainability Fund to £3.2 million.

The increased funding allows the Scottish Government to provide a £750 business sustainability grant to all childminding services who are registered with the Care Inspectorate as of 1 February 2021.

The Scottish Government has issued a letter to registered childminders with information on how to apply. 

Applications open on 11 March and will close at midnight on 17 March, you have 7 days to submit your application, after this the application window will be closed and no late applications will be possible.

Letter to all registered school age childcare providers (Added 2 March)

Today the First Minister confirmed that, following a continued suppression of the coronavirus figures, regulated school age childcare settings can re-open to all primary school children from 15 March alongside the return of P4-7 children as part of the phase 2 return. The plans are conditional on continued progress on suppressing coronavirus (COVID-19).

The Scottish Government has issued a letter to all registered school age childcare providers with more information. 

Letter to daycare of children services: update on the temporary restrictions fund (Added 2 March)

The Scottish Government has issued a letter to all registered daycare of children services with an update on the Temporary Restrictions Fund.

This letter provides details of Round 2 of the Fund covering the four week period from 1 February – 26 February 2021.

Young People's complaints text service (Added 7 January)

We launched a new children and young people complaint text service on 5 January 2021. This text service will add to the other ways young people can raise concerns about the quality of their care.

This service will allow young people to be more informed about their rights to quality care and support which we hope will build trust and allow us to improve their experience of care.

Key question 7 for children and young people residential services (Added 6 July)

We have developed key question 7 for children and young people residential services.

Where there are concerns relating to COVID-19 in a residential childcare setting this key question is to be used as part of the scrutiny intervention.

Where there are concerns not relating to COVID-19, areas from the existing quality framework will be used as a basis of our scrutiny work.

Supplementary national child protection guidance (Added 20 April) 

The Scottish Government has issued updated national child protection guidance. The supplementary guidance addresses a potential rise in caseloads due to the impact of coronavirus. 

Contingency foster care arrangements during Covid-19 (added 10 April 2020) 

We are aware that the Coronavirus outbreak is likely to have a significant impact on the demand for care services, including a rise in the number of children requiring to be placed in foster care arrangements. Due to the potential impact of COVID-19 on authorities placing children and availability of foster carers, authorities may wish to augment the number of placements available.

They could do this by using staff employed by them in a relevant professional capacity who are registered with a professional regulatory body to care for the young person in the staff member’s own home. In these situations, we would expect that the fostering agency satisfy themselves of certain aspects which we have outlined here. 

Scottish Government supplementary national child protection guidance (31 March 2020) 

Scottish Government has written to key organisations with responsibilities around child protection to inform them of supplementary guidance now available to support them to carry out their duties during the COVID-19 emergency. 

 

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