The government has announced an extension to the Infection Control Fund, pledging an extra £546 million in funding to bolster infection prevention and control measures in care homes during the winter.

The news came after a series of calls from the care sector for the government to make its plans known urgently before the deadline of the initial fund on 30 September. 

Vic Rayner, executive director of the National Care Forum said: “In the nick of time, the government has announced an extension of the Infection Control Fund. This ring-fenced finance has been a vital lifeline for many providers of care to ensure they are able to support staff who are isolating, and to minimise movement of staff within and between homes. It is imperative that this funding reaches the front line quickly. We welcome the funding, and need urgently the detail to enable understanding of the criteria and time frame.

“The clock has been ticking on the government around a number of major announcements this week – the Infection Control funding is most welcome – but needs to be understood against a wider set of commitments for winter and any second wave. The well documented breakdowns around testing, rising rates of infection and increases in local lockdowns mean that we need these government plans to be shared today – preparation is critical and last minute announcements serve no one well.” 

The National Care Forum brings together 120 of the UK’s social care charities. Collectively, these deliver more than £1.9 billion of social care support to more than 135,000 people in 6,500 settings. The NCF membership body collectively employs more than 85,000 staff.

Date published: September 17, 2020

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