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Decision details

Approval for the provision of block homecare hours for the COvid-19 Period

Decision Maker: Helen Jones (Director - Joint Commissioning)

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


• To approve the provision of provision of block homecare hours to as part of the planning and organisation of health & social care services across Wiltshire during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. This will support customers who have tested positive for Covid 19 to return to their homes and support those in the community who develop symptoms.

• Eight providers have been selected. The total value for initial period is anticipated to be £768,417.26. This is funded by the B&NES, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group using monies provided by central government to enable the health & care sector to respond to the COVID-19 situation. Please see appendix 1 for details of the contracts to be awarded.

• The contracts shall commence on 9th April with the initial term expiring on 2nd of August 2020. There is an extension period available of up to 16 weeks. To exercise this extension period a further Record of Officer Decision Report will need to be produced and authorised.

• To allow either the Strategic Procurement Hub or Legal Services to enter into the resulting contracts in line with the Council’s Constitution and Schemes of Delegation.

Reasons for the decision:

1. There is an urgent need to secure additional homecare capacity to support Wiltshire’s communities because:

a. The UK is experiencing a pandemic outbreak of the COVID–19 virus.
b. There is an established need to support the wider health and care system. NHS modelling shows that the acute hospitals serving Wiltshire are very likely to imminently breach their capacity in the first weeks of April.
c. The provision of these services will mean that customers can be supported in their own homes following discharge from a hospital setting or Hospital Discharge Support Unit to continue their recovery journey at home. This will help support the health system by releasing beds in NHS hospitals for those in greater need of specialist healthcare support.
d. A block contract agreement for additional homecare capacity will mean that customers can be discharged quickly, without delay, compared to alternative commissioning arrangements. This therefore provides more responsive capacity needed to support such discharges.
e. People living at home with CPVID-19 symptoms or who have tested positive for COVID-19 also require urgent homecare support.

2. I confirm that in making this decision I have considered the following in line with Wiltshire Council’s Constitution:

Key decision requirements: Yes

Views of relevant cabinet member(s), committee chairman, area board(s): Not applicable

Consultation with cabinet member(s), the Leader and Scrutiny (for Executive decisions taken under Emergency Powers): Yes via CEOs

Consultation with local members (as appropriate): Not applicable

Consideration of the area boards and delegated decision checklist for officers on the issue of when and how to involve local councillors and area boards in decisions about local services: Not applicable

Implication of any council policy, initiative, strategy or procedure: Yes

Consultation in accordance with requirements and expectations of consultation with the public: Not applicable

Range of options available: Yes

Staffing, financial and legal implications: Yes

Risk assessment: Yes

Involvement of statutory officers and/or directors:

Regional or national guidance from other bodies:

The council’s constitution:Yes

This contract is suitable for execution under the e-signature process: No

Alternative options considered:

1. Do nothing: Available evidence suggests that existing commissioning arrangements and available capacity in the local homecare market would not be adequate to meet the sudden surge in additional demand for homecare services. This also acknowledges the risk and likelihood of care workers in the current homecare workforce themselves being required to self-isolate or otherwise being at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 through the regular course of their duties.

2. Secure block contracts using the Help to Live at Home Pseudo Dynamic Purchasing System: This option was not favoured due to the extremely truncated time period from identification of need & demand to the required start date of services. It was felt the Council’s established method of securing homecare capacity would at this time have not enabled the council to be responsive enough to a rapidly evolving situation and would have created an avoidable bureaucratic burden on providers.

Conflict of Interest: Not applicable

Background: 1. The Director for Commissioning is responsible for any matters relating to the commissioning of homecare services in Wiltshire on behalf of Wiltshire Council. The power to make a decision in respect of this matter is delegated to me pursuant to Wiltshire Council’s Constitution. In any event, pursuant to paragraph 4 of Part 3 Section D of the Constitution, Directors of Wiltshire Council are empowered to take all necessary decisions in cases of emergency where the Director concerned believes that there is a risk of damage to property, a threat to the health or wellbeing of an individual and/or that the interests of the Council may be compromised if this decision is not otherwise taken. 2. Currently, the UK is experiencing a pandemic outbreak of the COVID–19 virus. A direct impact of this is the necessity for Wiltshire Council to make rapid decisions to secrure the health & wellbeing of the Community and to support the wider Health and Social Care System. 3. During the Covid-19 outb

Contact: Helen Jones, Director - Joint Commissioning Email: helen.jones@wiltshire.gov.uk.

Publication date: 02/06/2020

Date of decision: 09/04/2020

Accompanying Documents:




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