By reader iamsoccerdoc
Having read the above BBC report, I have to say I was really shocked that the following, from a statement by Scottish Care, was published without any comment
“We very much regret that insufficient attention was given to the needs of the care sector when compared to the preparation given to and focus upon the NHS. Social care as a whole was let down in the early stages of the pandemic, not least by the failures to introduce testing of staff and residents earlier.”
In relation to the first paragraph, the implication seems to be that as the NHS struggled to adapt in order to cope with what, at the time (ie March/ April last year) was seen as something that could very well overwhelm it (one only has to look at the experience in places like Italy to see how that might be thought), it would also take time to focus not just on itself, but on Care Homes that are not part of the NHS and are run for private profit. This is very like what I call “the baby bird” approach – that you sit about waiting for mummy and daddy to come along and stuff a nice big worm down your gob. Applied to the private care sector statement, this is very close to suggesting that in some respects the NHS (and/or govt) have primary responsibility for Care Home management of Covid. If so, then there surely have to be serious questions asked about what it is residents were paying for. Certainly we might expect liaison and advice to be given, but in terms of resources and practice that is surely the responsibility of the owners?
The second paragraph in contrast is utterly jaw dropping. Just what responsibility does govt have for testing to be introduced into private care homes. Right at the start of the Health and Safety at Work Act, there is an obligation on the employer to ensure the “health, safety and welfare at work” of their employees – not the govt, but the employer (and thus the care home owner).
I doubt very much this will happen, but I still hope there is a documentary maker somewhere who will call out the care home owners, who, in many cases, are nothing more than self-serving money grubbers who consider their residents as little more than an income stream, and who will at any and every opportunity pass their own responsibility on to anyone at all.