During the current COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak we still need to help keep adults at risk safe from abuse and neglect and share up to date information with the public and professionals. We will keep this page updated with information about safeguarding vulnerable adults and how they may be affected by COVID-19.
The WSAB is asking anyone who may be concerned that someone appears to have care and support needs that are not being met, for example they are struggling to keep themselves clean or prepare food, or if you are concerned that someone is at risk of neglect or abuse, please contact Adult Social Care’s Advice and Contact Team on 0300 4560111. The Advice and Contact Team is open: Monday to Thursday, 8.30am to 5.20pm, Friday 8.30am to 4.20pm
The COVID-19 (Coronavirus) situation is rapidly changing so Wiltshire Council has collated all the important guidance for Wiltshire.
The Coronavirus page on the GOV.UK website provides guidance on a range of issues, including advice for those working in healthcare settings, residential care homes, supported living and home care settings. GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service WhatsApp is new free service aims to provide official, trustworthy and timely information advice about Coronavirus, and will further reduce the burden on NHS Services. To use the free service, simply add 07860 064 422 into your phone contacts and message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.
The NHS have produced a range of advice, including symptoms, what to do if you if people are concerned they have Coronavirus, and self-isolation. It’s particularly important for everyone to take care of their mental health whilst self-isolating. For tips on how to keep on top of mental wellbeing and cope with staying at home, visit Every Mind Matters.
Protection from coronavirus scams
National Trading Standards and Friends Against Scams are warning people to remain vigilant following a rise in coronavirus-related scams that seek to benefit from the public’s concern and uncertainty over COVID-19. The advice is simple, think very carefully before handing over money, and don’t give out personal details unless you are sure who you are dealing with. Communities are also being urged to look out for signs of neighbours being targeted by doorstep criminals. For more information visit Action Fraud or www.FriendsAgainstScams.org.uk
Wiltshire Police wants to remind residents to be aware of fraudsters trying to take advantage of others during the current global situation. Report any suspicious person or activity to the police straight away. Call 101, if non-urgent, or 999 in an emergency.
During the pandemic there may be adults and children, living with domestic violence where there are escalating risks of abuse and serious harm. There are many ways to access help: Swindon’s Women’s Aid – 01793 610610; Splitz – 01225 775 276 or National Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000 247. Report concerns to Wiltshire Police, Call 101, if non-urgent, or 999 in an emergency.
Legal Updates: Coronavirus Act 2020
The Coronavirus Act received royal assent on 25 March 2020. The Act will significantly enhance the ability of public bodies across the UK to provide an effective response to tackle the coronavirus pandemic by introducing temporary legislation and regulatory easing.
The legislation will be time-limited – for 2 years – and not all of the measures will come into force immediately.
The easing includes:
• NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC) Assessments
Provision to allow NHS Providers to delay undertaking the assessment process for NHS CHC assessments until after the coronavirus outbreak has ended.
• Temporary amendments to the Mental Health Act 1983
Allowing a single approved practitioner or a single medical practitioner to undertake certain functions and extension of time limits relating to detention and transfer of patients.
• NHS and Local Authority (LA) care and support
Covers three provisions during the Coronavirus pandemic:
(1) Provision that a LA may lawfully prioritise who and what type of needs it will meet, rather than being required to meet all eligible assessed needs as specified under the Care Act 2014.
(2) Provision that LA’s may lawfully determine whether and the extent to which it will carry out assessments in individual’s needs and review care plans, or carry out financial assessments, rather than being required to carry these out in all cases as is currently set out in the Care Act.
(3) Provision for the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to direct LA’s in relation to the prioritisation of services to meet care and support needs in accordance with guidance issued by the Department of Health and Social Care.
To see further details visit the GOV.UK website
More information for public and professionals
- Coronavirus and advanced care planning
- Safeguarding Factsheet: Community volunteers during COVID-19 outbreak
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) the latest NHS advice for patients is now available in 20 languages:
- The National Illegal Money Lending Team have produced information on Coronavirus Scams (PDF, 826KB)
- Advice for professionals working with adults at risk who are self-isolating (PDF, 218KB)
- Guidance for Gypsy, Traveller and Boater communities on self-isolation
- Guidance for managing Traveller sites, unauthorised encampments and supporting people living on canal boats
- SCIE are continually updating their COVID-19 Hub to support all Adult Social Care workers
- Temporary changes to the Mental Health Act during Covid-19
- Coronavirus social media pack (PDF, 525KB)
- Coronavirus Scam postcard (PDF, 194KB)
- Coronavirus scams awareness letter (Word, 83KB)
- Coronavirus social media pack (Word, 1MB)
- Kings College have launched an app to track and help slow the spread of COVID-19 http://covid.joinzoe.com/ or your local app store
- Local Government Association homelessness hostel advice (PDF, 115KB)
- Doctors of the World have translated the latest government information around Coronavirus into 36 languages
- Support for modern slavery victims affected by coronavirus
- Safeguarding Adults training in now available free of charge on the Wiltshire Safeguarding Vulnerable Peoples Partnership page
- Health Education England have made available training resources on COVID 19 that will be useful to staff and volunteers.
- Waltham Forest Council have made a short 3 minute video for community volunteers during Covid-19.