But what about Somerset’s care homes?

It is well documented that staff in the NHS have been struggling to get supplies of personal protection equipment (PPE). Since the start of the COVID 19 outbreak it seems to be a daily source of difficulty for those working on the front line.

But what about carehome staff? As COVID 19 appears to represent a disproportionate risk to the over 70s, staff working in Somerset’s carehomes need PPE too. Whether they are working directly for Somerset County Council (SCC) or in facilities providing outsourced care to SCC.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but at the start of the outbreak SCC simply didn’t have stocks of PPE. Nor did Somerset Care and the care home companies acting as providers to SCC.

It is not something that has been a major issue in the past. Something that will not no doubt change in the future.

Since the start of the outbreak SCC has received two deliveries of PPE. A third is promised this week.

In between times they have ordered 250,000 facemasks from a Dorset company to help bridge the gap in supplies. Within a fortnight a national supply chain should have been set up. This means that all care providers can source PPE themselves direct from government without having to go through SCC. And presumably SCC will be able to source for their own staff in the same way.

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