We're available to help Adult Social Care providers. This page brings together national and local coronavirus guidance for those who provide care and support.

Coronavirus outbreak management for care homes

Report a care home outbreak

If you suspect or have a coronavirus outbreak in a care home (more than 1 resident or staff affected), call the Health Protection Team immediately

After contacting the Health Protection Team outbreak testing procedures will come into effect. You can find out more information on the government's website.

Vaccination consent for staff and residents

Vaccination for Coronavirus

Lots of people are now eligible for a Coronavirus vaccine, this includes health and social care workers, unpaid carers and people with underlying health conditions.

Vaccinations for staff

You can read the government's guide on vaccinations for staff.

Vaccination posters

You can download vaccination posters to display in care homes.


Coronavirus testing

Regular testing for care home residents and staff

The Department of Health and Social Care recommends:

  • staff should take a weekly Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test and twice weekly Lateral Flow Tests (LFT)
  • residents should take a PCR test every month

Guidance can be found on the government's Getting Tested page.

Sheffield care staff with symptoms

  • testing is available for Sheffield care staff who have symptoms, and their household members 
  • book with Primary Care sheffield or the government's Pillar 2 testing programme.

You can return to work after a positive test:

  • if you have completed 10 days in self isolation
  • and, are not symptomatic (no fever for 48 hours) they may still have a persistent cough and feel well enough to return to work
  • you do not require a negative test to return to work
  • government guidance explains more

Repeat testing for home care workers

Repeat weekly testing is available for home care workers through the government's Pillar 2 system.

Repeat testing in extra care and supported living settings 

Regular testing is available for residents and staff in extra care and supported living settings. There are two different levels of testing available, for high risk settings and wider settings.

Regular testing for personal assistants

Personal assistants can access twice weekly LFT kits.

Regular testing for adult day care services

Regular testing is available for open day care services run by paid staff.

Testing visitors to care homes

Visitors will be asked to return a negative LFT test taken on the day of every visit. This can be taken at the care home before being admitted. Visitors may be able to prove evidence of a test taken elsewhere. However, this should be discussed and agreed with the care home manager prior to visit. People who test positive will be asked to leave the care home immediately, self-isolate and complete a confirmatory PCR test which will be provided by the care home.

For more information, please visit our Covid-19 -Visiting a care home page.

Antibody testing for Sheffield care staff

Antibody tests are used to see if you have previously had the virus. They are different from other tests which pick up whether you currently have the disease or not. Tests are limited to paid social care staff.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)


Read our guidance on using PPE along with the government's advice.

Emergency PPE for your organisation

We can supply up to 1 weeks supply of PPE if you meet the following criteria:

  • you have explored your usual routes for PPE
  • you are in critical need of PPE (with only 72 hours supply remaining)
  • you have made every effort to secure PPE from additional routes and have contacted the Service Disruption Line
  • the amount requested is proportionate and will bridge the gap to your next delivery
  • your staff must have close, unavoidable contact with confirmed or suspected Covid-19 cases
  • PPE is used in compliance with Public Health England clinical advice 
  • you have made every effort to redesign services to minimise the number of frontline workers in close contact with symptomatic people

You will be asked weekly for your order. If you do not require anything please complete all fields with 0 quantity.  If you need the supply delivering to a different address please mark this in the notes box.


Deprivation of Liberty update

  • we are prioritising the allocation of High Priority cases to BIAs
  • we complete assessments in line with government coronavirus guidance


Infection Control Fund

Other resources and information

Correspondence to providers

Message to GPs - Care Home Principles

  • Message to GPs

    Citywide health and social care partners agree on discharge principles.

    Health chiefs from across Sheffield have come together agree on principles to manage the healthcare needs of patients in care homes in Sheffield during the covid-19 pandemic.

    Medical directors from the CCG, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals and St Luke’s Hospice, Sheffield’s director of public health, the director of adult service at Sheffield City Council and the chief executive of Primary Care Sheffield, have all signed a framework by which patients and residents will have their healthcare needs managed.

    The COVID-19 pandemic is placing additional pressures on patients and staff within care homes. Health and social care providers and commissioners from across the city are working closely together to continue to ensure, as far as possible, that care homes are shielded to help protect the health and well-being of both residents and the staff and to reduce the risk spreading COVID in and between different locations. Our priority as a city is to assess patients to ensure that they receive the right care they need in the right setting at the right time.

    A decision has been made not to commission isolation or ‘hot’ sites for the management of COVID positive and negative residents who are unable to return to a domestic home or back to their care home setting. Instead, discharges will be managed on an individual basis with the risks for that person weighed up, following the agreed principles.

    The principles are:

    • We will seek to discharge patients back to their own homes wherever that is possible.
    • Unless we are certain that measures have been put in place to make it safe to do so, patients with COVID-19 symptoms or testing positive for the condition will not be discharged to care home until they are no longer contagious.
    • We will not discharge vulnerable patients who are negative to a positive environment.
    • Care Homes will be identified as shielded communities.
    • Where discharge back to a person’s own home is not possible, people will only go to a care home where this is the right setting for their needs and they can be cared for safely.
    • All patients will be tested before discharge to a care home setting.
    • We will respect the care homes independence. So that they decide whether or not they can take an admission (discharge from hospital/admission from community/transfer from another care home) safely.

    You can view the full principles attached.

    As COVID-19 is a new virus, we have learnt so much over the last 3 months on how to respond to the pandemic. National guidance is frequently changing as we learn more about the virus and we recognised the need for a unified approach in the best interest of the vulnerable groups and came together as a city to put this in place.

IPS Training Package For Care Homes

You can take another nationally recognised IPC training on Coronavirus written by the Infection Prevention Society 

Take the time to watch this 45 minute video with your staff as it provides a lot of vital IPC information specific to care homes

If you require any further advice please contact the IPC Team direct on: sheffieldccg.ipc@nhs.net

Skills for Care

Skills for Care have a dedicated section of Covid-19 related information and resources. Visit the skills for care website.

You can also receive their weekly eNews with Covid-19 updates by signing up.

Skills for Care have opened a new advice telephone line and email inbox to provide you with support and answers to your questions. They’re on hand from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Call them on 0113 241 1260, email at RMAdvice@skillsforcare.org.uk.

Sheffield Development Hub and the Learning and Development Service

For the latest information and resources to support you through COVID-19 visit the Sheffield Development Hub.

Find out what the Learning and Development Service are doing.

L and D Guide June 2020

Training / Webinars

Care Home Managers’ Forum hosted by St Luke’s every Monday 2pm to 3pm.

COVID-19 ECHO sessions hosted by St Luke’s every Wednesday 1:45pm to 2:45pm for Nursing homes and 3:00pm to 4:00pm for Residential homes & Domiciliary care agencies.

For zoom meeting details email providercovid19@sheffield.gov.uk.

Care worker free parking permit

  • Care workers can apply for a temporary parking permit to park for free in Sheffield City Council pay and display bays on street or in off street car parks in neighbourhoods throughout the city (excluding the city centre inner and outer zones). Permits will be posted to the carers address and will be valid until Saturday 30 May 2020. This date will be reviewed and may be extended depending on circumstances.

    The permit cannot be used to park on yellow lines, disabled bays, residential permit bays or other parking restrictions. A penalty charge notice may be issued if the permit is used improperly.

  • Apply for a free care worker parking permit
  • View parking permit zones

Safeguarding Adults with Dementia

SCIE have made a quick guide which aims to support care providers and staff to safeguard people with dementia during the crisis.

Care Home Dementia Resource

RDaSH have produced a fantastic guide exploring practical ideas to support people living with dementia during the Covid 19 pandemic.

It explores Teepa Snow’s Positive Approach to Care (PAC) methods to encourage hand washing, swabbing and stress or distress in response to PPE.

If you have any further questions please contact the Dementia Advice Service.

Support for professionals working with people with dementia

Ask a question about how to continue to support someone with dementia, and/or refer them in to be linked with the local community dementia provision in their area (delivered by People Keeping Well partners).

Dementia Advice Sheffield

Support and resources for people living with dementia

Use and share the ideas, support and resources on the newly updated Sheffield Directory dementia page.

St Luke’s enhanced Service to support care homes

  • With immediate effect an enhanced service for care homes is being launched to support you during the COVID-19 pandemic. This service offers you the opportunity to book virtual zoom clinic appointments with St Luke's to discuss resident concerns and may be particularly helpful for you to link up for joint discussions with the GP and St Luke's.

    The below flyer gives details of the enhanced service which also includes bereavement and well-being support for staff and relatives as well as detailing the increased hours that St Luke's intensive treatment team can be contacted for urgent advice if needed.

    Please contact Lynne Ghasemi or Emma Westerdale for further information if required on 0114 2357468.

Guide to helping residents keep in touch

The government advises using alternatives to in-person visiting 

As a care provider, you must ensure all reasonable efforts are made to avoid breaching the Human Rights of your residents by: 

  • providing support for residents to maintain communication with friends and family
  • applying for an Authorised for Deprivation of Liberty where required 

Video calls

On a laptop, smart phone or tablet, you can use:

  • Skype
  • WhatsApp
  • FaceTime
  • Zoom 

Some residents may need support with this. Schedule in regular times to make calls within your care plans.

Telephone calls

As above, regular telephone calls could be scheduled into care plans, where residents dont like using video calls.


A regular newsletter could be emailed or posted to family and friends including:

  • photos
  • information about activities 
  • other positive events in the care home. 

Consider both GDPR and consent permissions if you are planning to share any information which identifies individuals. 

Personal letters or emails

You can encourage residents’ family and friends to write letters and cards as nearly everyone likes to receive a surprise in the post!  If possible, you could encourage people to include some recent photographs as these provide a good visual prompt to instigate conversations.  Younger members of families could also be encouraged to draw pictures and send them in to residents.  These could be used to make a colourful display in bedrooms, lounge areas, etc.  Similarly, care home staff can offer support to residents (with their permission) to help write letters or emails for sending to their family/friends.  Residents might like to write a letter or make a card, draw a picture etc for sending to family and friends. 

Create a Facebook group

It would be a good idea to make the group private so you can restrict access to residents and their families and friends.  You could then post photos and include updates on any planned activities or other positive events within the care home.  With permission, you could also view the Facebook accounts of residents’ families/friends and share their news with residents.  Please do consider both GDPR and consent permissions if you are planning to share information using social media.


Like Facebook, it would be sensible to set the account as private.  You could then share photos and updates from the care home although you would need to obtain permission to include photos of individual residents.  You could also ‘follow’ the family or friends of residents and share their news with the resident.  Please do consider both GDPR and consent permissions if you are planning to share information using social media

Suggestions for more isolated residents

You may have some residents with few family or friends to keep in contact with but there are a number of volunteers operating in the city who are very happy to telephone a lonely resident.  Please contact the NHS Good Samaritan Volunteer Scheme on tel. 0808 196 3382 and they will allocate a suitable person to contact the resident for a friendly chat.  You could also consider contacting local primary schools once they reopen and invite them to send cheerful pictures made by the children to be shared with residents. 

It’s not expected that you would need to use all the above suggestions but you must put in place appropriate methods for maintaining contact between residents and their families and friends. 

Consideration needs to be taken regarding the most appropriate methods of communication for each resident and any support needed to facilitate properly (eg. video calls).  Different forms of communication will also be dependent upon the family/friends agreeing to it. 

Finally, care home managers will need to consider their own resources and ensure that all relevant GDPR and consent requirements are being addressed.

Community Catalysts launch The Buzz

On Monday 4 May 2020, Community Catalysts is launching an exciting new online platform called The Buzz

The Buzz has been designed to be inclusive and accessible to a wide audience including people with a learning disability. It will become a collection of free videos with activities that people can do at home, such as art, dance, exercise, cooking and more. New videos will be added to our dedicated Facebook group every weekday, and weekly on our Small Good Stuff website.

Each video is produced by one of the many fantastic community enterprises who have been supported by Community Catalysts. All the enterprise leaders are experienced in running inclusive, accessible and fun sessions designed to keep everyone motivated, energised and entertained during lockdown.

The Buzz can be accessed in two ways:

1.     On the Facebook group – search on Facebook for ‘The Buzz by Community Catalysts’ or click this link: www.facebook.com/groups/hellothebuzz

2.     On our Small Good Stuff website - www.smallgoodstuff.co.uk/the-buzz/

Facebook group members can use the group to share their ideas, send in pictures of the things they have created and let us know how they are getting on with the activities.

To become a member of the Facebook group, people will need a Facebook profile. They must also read the group rules and agree to them when they join. We will monitor everything that is shared in the Facebook group including all videos and members’ posts and comments. We will check everything before it is approved to make sure the group is safe and fun for everyone.

We have created an easy read information sheet about The Buzz.

This in an easy read information guide to using social media and Facebook safely, which you may find helpful.

We can’t wait to start sharing some great activities and we look forward to seeing people get active, creative and having fun!

Re-use of medicines in care homes and hospices

NHS England, NHS Improvement, Department of Health and Social Care have published a Standard Operating Procedure around the re-use of medicines in care homes and hospices.

Guidance has been devised by the Medicines Optimisation Team at Sheffield CCG to clarify what this message means for your care home. We recommend that the scheme is currently limited to EOL medication, however, if we (the CCG) become aware of national shortages of other medicines we may recommend the scheme is extended to include these. To support the implementation of this where appropriate, we have produced two documents:

  • Guidance to aid implementation in primary care.  This is a summary of requirements and includes a checklist for assessing if a medicine is suitable for re-use and a sample log of how to record usage.
  • paper aimed at care home staff​ that includes: Q and As; a sample resident consent form; a checklist for assessing if a medicine is suitable for re-use; a sample log of how to record usage and a sample of how to keep records for a controlled drug.

As a reminder, re-use of medicines should only occur in a crisis situation, they have been assessed that the medicine or an alternative is not available in an acceptable timeframe, there is an immediate need and you have been instructed to do so. ​

This information has also been circulated to GP practices, community pharmacies, the Local Authority and the local CQC.

If you have any queries please email sheffieldccg.sheffieldmedicinesincarehomes@nhs.net