Care providers in England will receive an extra £546m to help reduce Covid-19 transmissions this winter, the Government has said.
The money will come via the Infection Control Fund, which was established in May and has been extended until March 2021.
The funding can be used to hire more staff to restrict movement between care homes, helping to stop the spread of the virus, and help care providers pay staff full wages when they are self-isolating, the DHSC said.
In July, a study found care home staff ‘working across several locations’ partly fuelled the spread of infection, in addition to shortages of PPE.
DHSC said that total funding for infection control measures in care homes will now stand at over £1.1 billion, and this ‘underlines the Government’s commitment to ensure adult social care has the resources it needs to keep residents and staff safe’.
The announcement also follows calls for the Government to produce a winter care home plan, which DHSC has now said will be published later this week.
Matt Hancock, health and social care secretary, said: ‘From the very beginning we have done everything possible to make sure our social care system is protected and has the resources it needs to keep our brilliant workforce and those they care for safe.’
He added: ‘This new funding of over half a billion pounds will support not only care home residents, but also some of the most vulnerable in society living at home and in supported living.
‘I know this will give peace of mind to so many, and we will set out further detail in our adult social care winter plan this week.’
Today, the Government also announced £150m for 25 A&E hospital departments across England to help with expanding physical space to manage the flow and treatment of patients.