Huge cash boost to help slow Covid spread in Barnsley Hospital and care homes

A £1.2m government grant will help ease pressure on Barnsley Hospital and care homes this winter.

Monday, 14th December 2020, 7:00 am
Updated Monday, 14th December 2020, 2:43 pm

The winter pressures funding is part of £240m to help councils alleviate winter pressures on the NHS, get patients home quicker and free up hospital beds.

The cash will be spent on social work assessments, equipment and beds.

Barnsley Council has also received £2.5m in an Infection Prevention Control Fund, which is to reduce the rate of COVID-19 transmission support in adult social care.

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Barnsley Hospital. Picture Tony Johnson.

Of this, £1.5m will be allocated to care homes, £42,000 to community care providers and £49,200 for other care settings.

Barnsley Council's ruling cabinet are expected to approve a report detailing the plans on December 16.

Although around 30 per cent of the 2,272 care home beds in the borough are currently empty, a report states that if the beds were to fill up, "We could find ourselves in a position where we do not have enough beds to meet local need."

The report adds that 12 beds have been reserved at Mapleton Court in Grimethorpe for residents with positive COVID-19 results.

The report also reveals that the council "cannot maintain [the] level of financial support indefinitely" it has provided throughout the pandemic, such as payments to care providers to help with increased costs, and the cost of "voids created as a result of the death of care home residents from March".

"Unfortunately, as with many businesses, the care sector will be affected long term by the pandemic. To date, only one care provision has closed its doors in Barnsley, but others may follow in the coming months."

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