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All the news from around the association and the WMCA Blog

Blog of Debbie Le Quesne
Chief Executive of West Midlands Care Association
She has worked in the Care Industry for over 20 years and before that was involved in fund raising and supporting several Care Homes for the Elderly and Learning Disability
Currently she is the Chief Executive of the West Midlands Care Association and the Co Chair of the Care Association Alliance

 "I work with Care Homes, Supported Living and Homes Care Agencies. We all admire the work they do and we want them to feel that they are not alone in trying to provide quality care in a ridiculously complex market in such trying times.

Why We Need Social Care To Be Strong And Sustainable

Within the next decade - by 2025 - there will be 11.7 million disabled people in England, according to government figures.

99% of advanced dementia sufferers not getting specialist care, finds study

Lack of palliative care services in community means GPs and emergency services being forced to provide most of dementia patients€™ healthcare

Four in five will need social care at a cost of £30k a year

Britons are more realistic now about the true cost of social care with many planning for their old age, financial experts say.

The NHS should see care homes as partners, not problems

Care homes provide the majority of long-term healthcare to older people but provision is uneven. Our study shows how services can work together better

Social care redundancies will leave service on brink of collapse warns union

£4 million cuts to city's home care service include 150 care workers jobs

How can we encourage more men to choose a career in social care?

With staff shortages set to put the care sector in crisis, now is the time to eradicate stereotypes, boost gender diversity and engage more male applicants

Capable, confident staff are the bedrock of good quality social care

Great social care has the power to transform people€™s lives positively but inadequate, unreliable care is devastating and casts a dark shadow over the rest of the sector, undermining public trust.

Despite the vast majority of adult social care services registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) providing good quality care overall, we know this is not always the case.

University of Derby launches online Integrative Health and Social Care HE Diploma

The University of Derby has launched a new course aimed at supporting health and social care workers into higher education while they continue to work and earn.

The Diploma of Higher Education in Health and Social Care has been developed by academics at University of Derby Online Learning (UDOL) to offer care workers online access to a Level 4 and Level 5 integrative health and social care course that they can study while working and earning.

What care homes can do to improve life for their residents

Person-centred care means offering people choice, control and respect €“ something smaller services specialise in. Here€™s how others can do it

Social care system 'not fit for purpose' - nine out of 10 MPs

A survey of 101 English MPs found that only 10% believe the current social care system is suitable for the UK's ageing population

Knowing the facts (but not all) on the fees info

To the unsuspecting British public the cost of social care is a mystery: Heads buried in sand it’s the bill that no-one really wants to consider saving for.

The elephant in the room, many only care to get the facts when a crisis occurs. So I was not in the least surprised to read in the Independent that the majority of elderly people in social care have no idea how much it costs.

Salvaging home care: An essential conference

We’ve beaten the drum long and loud that the future of the care sector must see a much more cohesive approach to meeting the needs of society’s most vulnerable.

Britain facing social care crisis, charities warn

Britain facing social care crisis, charities warn

UK pensioners will be given Amazon Echo speakers to remind them to take medication in a world first for social care

Pensioners in adult social care will be given Amazon Echos in their homes so the devices can remind them when to take their medication.

The voice-activated gadgets, which are to be handed out to 50 clients, will also remind users when their carer is due to arrive in an apparent world first for social care.

Hampshire County Council are the first local authority to try out the scheme using the £150 ($194) devices, which work with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.


The Competition and Markets Authority is investigating amid concerns that the social care system could have competition and consumer protection problems

Cash-strapped councils told to meet undeliverable bed-blocking targets or have social care funding slashed

Councils ordered to reduce number of delayed transfers by up to 70 per cent before winter months or face losing social care funds next year

Reimaging the future of social care: Ideals need action

Social care . . . what will become of it? I often muse on the future and what will emerge when my watch with West Midlands Care Association is over.

The Croft - simply 'Outstanding' and a great antidote to the gloom

I have some excellent news that proves good care is still happening and it's right on our doorstep! And it's a timely snub to those who bleat that there should be more excellence in the care sector.

BBC beds shortage report: West Midlands bucks trend and still has capacity

As youre probably now aware, nationally we are facing what as been described as a huge shortfall of beds in residential care.

Social care cash to go on health, LGA chair warns

The Independent announced funding intended to improve social care is being used to bail out the NHS.

We all knew this was on the cards, but seeing it in print brings home the stark reality of the financial problems the sector faces.

Still wating to grasp the nettle of social care

Writing for Driven by Health with Care, Debbie Le Quesne review the social care landscape and offers some timely advice to struggling care providers

The political landscape is a complex one where uncertainty reigns. Theresa May did not emerge as the force to be reckoned with as many had predicted and the snap election has left social care and many other things in limbo.

Another financial time bomb ticks away

The Guardian newspaper has posed an age-old question: Who looks after the carers? Unexpectedly it concluded the taxman, but the answer is true even though it may not be the whole truth.

Safety first in Pimp Your Zimmer contest

West Midland Care Associations Pimp Your Zimmer completion is still creating interest as providers discover its creative approach to helping residents say safe.

Good care still out there as WMCA members scoop clutch of awards

Im not one for self-congratulation (well, maybe a little bit) but only when there are exceptional circumstances to validate praise.

So please will you indulge me as I applaud the membership of WMCA which did so well in Birminghams recent glittering Care Awards 2017 event.

Salvaging Home Care Together, our conference you dare not miss

So the Care Quality Commission has announced that social care is in a precarious state.

Indeed, it is. And we had a snapshot of its findings throughout the news bulletins of the last few days. Some pretty emotive dialogue was uttered too . . . Age UK warned the results leave elderly people and their families playing Russian roulette when they choose a nursing home or other care service.

Brexit, we need assurance for EU workers to ease the social care crisis

It was just a matter of time before someone mentioned Brexit and staff drain in social care.

Both special care providers and the NHS are losing vital staff.

At last a BCF lifeline for Staffordshire

Staffordhsire is to get£30m from the Better Care Fund to help with its social care programme.

I read the news in The Sentinal online this morning as I was catching up on the social care headlines of the day.

Social care's future: Is now the time MPs are really listensing to us?

I know the Queens speech was a little while ago, but it struck me this weekend nothing much was said on the future of social care funding.

Now it looks like more cuts are on the way

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, which represents hospitals, has warned in a BBC report that a very difficult winter is on the way.

The brave new world of cooperative care, dream or reality?

I'm definitely not in the Simon Cowell wealth league, but I'd like to think I'm pretty savvy when it comes to the economics of business. Running the West Midlands Care Association, like all businesses, involves the social science of economics that essentially deals with supply, demands, profits and losses.

Dom care: The perils of 'alternative' introductions

Theres an old guard out there in the care sector which often speaks of the Halcion days before regulation.

Doubtless some of those people made an awful lot of money, but we are now in more enlightened times when wealth and playing by the rules have to be bed partners.

'Red top' report makes me see red (again)

I seldom read the red tops, but at the risk of raising my blood pressure braved an online dip into the Mirror. Big mistake.

CQC seeking our views: Now have your say

The Care Quality Commission wants our views in helping it shape the next phase of regulation in England.

For the next eight weeks our voices can be heard so please dont miss the opportunity.

CQC softens its approach to learning disabled bed registration

The Care Quality Commission has climbed down over a proposal to limit the number of beds for learning disabled.

In line with National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) policy on autism accommodation, the regulator appeared to want to restrict registration to facilities housing six people or less.

Celebrity chef joins dementia cake bake day

Best known for being a haute cuisine teacher on the reality television programme Ladette to Lady and as a judge on Soapstar Superchef, Rosemary Shrager is backing the Alzheimers Society Cupcake Day tomorrow.

A cross-partry approach to solving the care crisis

The people have spoken and here we are with a hung parliament. Depending what you read or whom you believe the reasons differ. But one theme emerges again and again: The issue of how funding is achieved for long-term social care.

Carers Week: This unpaid army deserve so much more

Carers where would we be without them? Interesting, isnt it, that the UK public does not feel that unpaid carers are sufficiently valued, according to a new online poll published today (12 June) for the start of Carers Week.

Single pot funding: Could it ever really happen?

As the nation heads to the polls today and a future government is elected, I find myself musing over what it really would be like with a single pot funding stream for the NHS and social care.

Conference earthed in the realities of the current care climate

Earthed in reality thats me. And like no time before, the care sector needs just that approach.

Thats why our West Midlands Care Association Conference has a lazer-sharp focus on business.

Election social care proposals: Are any really credible?

The long road to social care reform appears to be getting longer. So far in the last 19 years weve got through 12 Green Papers, White Papers and four reviews.

What the election manifestoes say on social care

Call me cynical if you wish, but somewhere between the deceit, lies and impossible electioneering dreams lies the truth of what social care will be like under a newly elected government. Sadly, I don't possess a crystal ball.

Standing with Age UK on its manifesto to the emerging government

We are a civilised nation yes. We care for the most vulnerable yes. We provide for those who are frail and elderly yes. We look after those with learning disabilities and ensure no-one is struggling in their homes alone yes.

New report points to huge regional variations in social care spending

Im not normally a follower of the financial Press, but I note with interest the Financial Times has seen worthy to turn its attention to social care spending by councils.

In real-terms local authority spending on social care per adult between 200910 and 201516 fell by 11 per cent.

Stand with us as we stand togther against dementia

Tomorrow (Saturday) will mark the end of Dementia Awareness Week the annual event that highlights the memory-loss condition and how we all can contribute to finding a cure.

Our televisions are regularly invaded with the clever advertising campaign by the Alzheimers Society encouraging to put differences aside and unite against dementia.

Public warming to tax levy for social care survival . . . but . . .

A tax rise to fund social care may not be such a bitter pill, according to a new survey where 57 per cent of those polled supported the idea.

The findings in The Observer were published earlier this month just days before the Conservatives outlined their manifesto for the snap General Election.

Common sense and when togetherness is better than being 'rescued'

It was hard to miss last week the news that Britains most senior family judge has warned that separating elderly couples in care homes can lead to deaths from broken hearts.

A message to Mrs May (and any other politician who has ears to listen)

The electioneering has begun as we trundle towards a premature General Election.

Promises will be made and no doubt and for good reasons fail to materialise. Its just the way it is as the parties contend for votes.

May's pledge on care: Election ear-tickling?

Call me a cynic, but Ive heard yesterdays big social care news somewhere before . . . Theresa May is allegedly giving 'serious consideration' to introducing a cap on social care costs so the elderly do not have to lose their homes

Another piece of music to help keep memories alive

Maybe its because Im generally in need of a lift after the weekend, or perhaps our media guys timing is just perfect for Mondays, but on the heels of my last blog about the Lost Chord Lottery windfall hes pointed me to another piece of news thats music to my ears.

This really is something to sing about

Dementia is one of the biggest challenges our country is facing and yet, given its overwhelming impact on society, rarely is it the headlines.

Care home residents deserve a vote this General Election

In the columns of The Guardian, Sara Livadeas, a consultant with Social Care Works, writes: Care homes are communities within communities, and have a vital role to play for people who would otherwise face isolation and declining health.

Join our protest over social care spending plan in Birmingham

Heres the dilemma: Birmingham City Council is to receive a total of 81million over the next three years to address its social care crisis.

Grass root lessons in survival at Care Association Alliance conference

Looking to get an insight into the current market trends of the care sector? Wanting to catch up on the national scene and hear some informative speakers who ll tell is how it is? Need to network with the movers and shakers?

UK's 1.3bn pound aid to help China's social care

How would you feel if I told you British money is being spent on improving social care in China?

Fees response and resposibility

I've recently completed an article for hard copy/online magazine/multi-media platform Driven by Health, addressing the care sector's response to fees those paid, and those charged.

News and Blog Archive

Archivied Blog Posts and News Items

Birmingham Care Awards

A celebration of the care industry in Birmingham

WMCA meets National Figures

The Care Association Alliance was part of the organisation of a National Conference held in London at Excel on 28th and 29th July.