Rosamond Roughton, the director general for adult social care at the Department for Health and Social Care, has unexpectedly stepped down from her role.

The Guardian newspaper reports that Roughton “is now on a career break”, according to Whitehall sources and that no other explanation has been given for her departure.

Roughton was the senior civil servant with responsibility for care homes in England and her leaving has “sparked fresh concern about an absence of government leadership in a sector that has recorded 21,600 deaths from Covid-19 – almost 40% of all UK fatalities from the virus,” says The Guardian.

The former NHS official was the key contact for care home leaders during the crisis and was tasked with beefing up the department’s response to the pandemic.

Roughton was appointed earlier this year and oversaw the roll-out of testing for staff and residents in care homes, which many in the sector criticised for being too slow and ineffective in managing infection.

Date published: July 17, 2020

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