Commenting on the announcement of the Government's social care strategy amid the COVID-19 crisis, Deborah Alsina MBE, Chief Executive of Independent Age, said:

“We welcome the publication of the Government’s action plan to support the people who receive, and deliver, social care. At Independent Age we’ve heard from people across the country who are worried about themselves, or a loved one, not getting the care they need, or catching COVID-19 due to the shortages of personal protective equipment and testing for their much valued carers.

"Whilst significantly late, it is positive that the Government has committed to providing PPE, but this must be made available urgently to staff who work across social care.

"The Government must also rapidly deliver on its commitment to test care professionals, residents in care homes, and those being discharged from hospital.

"It will need to be monitored and kept under review to ensure that everyone is given the equipment and testing that they need, when they need it.

"It is also reassuring for there to be a focus on making sure people can support their loved ones at the end of their life. At Independent Age we know the process of saying goodbye has a significant impact on an individual’s experience of bereavement. This is a traumatic time for many, and ensuring there is clear guidance for both friends and family members alongside professional care workers, should be a priority for the Government."

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