The Leader of the Council received a report which report set out proposals to make temporary additional payments to care providers for Covid related costs.
The Portfolio Holder for Adults and Public Health outlined the content of the report which advised that the Government had set out clear expectations that the funding provided be used to support front line services and care providers including care homes. He reported the steps that had been taken by officers to support care providers aligned with the Government‘s Covid Funding, Association of Directors of Adult Social Services framework, Government’s Procurement Policy Note and Procurement’s advice. The proposal to make a 5% temporary additional payment to care providers for Covid related spend would bring total spend in this area to approximately 8-9%.
The Director of Adult Social Services emphasised that the care providers were under considerable pressures and were dealing vulnerable and end of life residents and initially did not have the same support the acute hospital trust would have had. The additional 5% did reflect the total expenditure that the Council had incurred.
The Leader of the Council requested that his gratitude be conveyed to the Adult Social Care team and colleagues for the support provided to care homes and the wider care market at a time when there were an increasing number of care home residents. He advised that Cabinet would be considering a report on additional funding for Phase 2 (July to end of September) and Phase 3 (October to end of December) on 21 May 2020.
(1) the approach taken to support providers implemented with effect from 23 March 2020 until the end of June 2020 be noted;.
(2) the Council make a 5% temporary additional payment to care providers for Covid related expenses for the period 23 March 2020 to the end of June 2020.
Reason for Decision: To enable the Council to make payments to social care providers in accordance with the Government’s allocation of additional Covid funding and fulfil the Local Authority duty to manage the provider market.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected: As set out in the report.
Conflict of Interest relating to the matter declared by Leader/Dispensation Granted: None.
[Call-in did not apply as a waiver of Call-in had been obtained from the Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee that the decision proposed was reasonable and should be treated as a matter of urgency as any delay likely to be caused by the Call-in process would seriously prejudice the Council’s interests.
Reasons for Urgency: The decision was urgent and could not wait until the scheduled meeting of Cabinet on 21 May as this would delay the allocation of payments to Harrow’s care providers who were supporting the most vulnerable residents. Allocation of the funding as soon as possible would also support the NHS in terms of hospital discharges and their response to the COVID 19 crisis.]