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A Class Care Home Care and County Coverage

A Class Care started their Home Care service in August 2012. The company was setup as the 2 Directors had identified a short fall in care and they wanted to make a difference to peoples lives. They had come across other care agencies that treated clients just as a number and lacked personalisation. It was from this observation that drove the Directors to always strive to treat their clients as if they were their own parents.

The name A Class Care was derived from thinking of the best possible service or quality. When you think of quality or perfection it always starts with the letter “A”– for the example the educational Grading systems and A Class Mercedes.

A Class Care’s Home Care and Live In Care service started in Waterbeach, Cambridge and since then they have been proud to say that they have extended their services to the following counties:

  1. Essex
  2. Bedfordshire
  3. Suffolk
  4. Norfolk

Their central office remains within Waterbeach, Cambridge which manages all the back office functions such as  Recruitment, Coordination, Training, Health & Safety and Quality Assurance. Our local branches are responsible for managing clients within their dedicated towns.

A Class Care provide Home Care, Night Care and 24 Hour Live In Care service. The counties that we cover are as follows:

Suffolk and 20 mile surrounding area

Bury St Edmunds Lowesoft
Brandon Leiston
Claire Midenhall
Eye Needham Market
Flexistowe Newmarket
Framlington Saxmundum
Hadleigh Southwood
Halesworth Stowmarket
Haverhil Sudbury
Ipswich

 

Woodbridge
Kesgrave

 

Bedfordshire and 20-mile surrounding area

Bedford Biggleswade
Dunstable Dunton
Luton Leighton Buzzard
Flitwick Fancott
Kensworth Kempston

 

Essex 20-mile surrounding area

Braintree Brentwood
Billericay Basildon
Chelmsford Chigwell
Colchester Clacton on Sea
Grays Great Baddow
Harwich Harlow
Saffron Walden Southend on Sea
Witham Walton on the Naze

 

Norfolk - Essex 20-mile surrounding area

Aylsham Ashby
Caister-on-the sea Cromer
Diss Dereham
Fakenham Foxley
Kings Lynn Kirby Bedon
Holt Hunworth
Linconshire Lyngate
Great Yarmouth Great Snoring
Norwich Neatishead
Thetford Taverham
Swaffham Stonebridge
Wells-next-the sea Wymondham

 

If your location is not listed please do enquire by contacting our central office on the 01223 864 066 or email us at info@aclasscare.co.uk

Preparing for a Job Interview

Preparing for a Job Interview

Applying for a job can be a daunting experience especially if you have been out of the job market for a long time. Here at A Class Care we would like to share with you some tips and ideas on how you can prepare for that job interview.

During COVID, we have had to rely heavily on technology and using IT systems such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom. This has now become the new normal. To prepare for that all-important interview:

Step 1 – Internet connection

Ensure that you have excellent internet connection. There is nothing more frustrating for an interview panel than having to repeat a question due to poor reception.

Step 2 – Free from interruptions

The Internet has been full of videos with animals appearing in the zoom calls. However, it can be distracting for yourself and the panel – especially for yourself, as a candidate, as you can lose your train of thought. If you’re anything like me, you will panic which can cause you to be distracted.

Additionally, ensure that the household is fully aware that you are having this important interview so you can concentrate fully.

Step 3 – Presentation

Just because the interview is taking place at home does not mean that you should attend the interview in your lounge wear. Whilst this seems simple you will be surprised how many candidates forget to dress for the occasion. Impress the panel by ensuring you have the correct professional attire.

Step – 3 Body language

We have had interviews with candidates lying down in bed or lying on the sofa. This is a definite no no and creates the wrong impression. Find a space where you can sit upright, put your phone or device on a stand so you do not have to hold it, sit up right and maintain eye contact with the panel

 Step 4 – Do your homework

Impress the panel by showing that you have conducted your research on the company. Being in HR for over 15 years, candidates have said “I don’t know much about you, but I am keen”. There is a lack commitment with this statement. The interview process is a 2-way street. You need to know that this is the right company for you as well. Find out:

  1. The history of the company
  2. When did it start?
  3. Who owns the company?
  4. What service do they provide?
  5. What’s their mission statement?

Do your homework and impress the panel. Interviewers love to hear that you have taken the time out to do your research.

Step 5 – Interview questions

When answering the questions, stick to the point; avoid digressing. Babbling shows that you don’t fully understand the question and it loses you and the panel.

Step 6 – Relax

Finally, try your best to relax and enjoy the experience. The more confident you come across the more likely you are to put your interviewer at ease.

A Class Care is an award nominated Care agency that provides 24 Hour Live In Care and Home Care to clients within the Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Norfolk and Essex County. Find out about our agency by contacting our friendly team on 01223 864 066

Planning for your care

Planning for your care.

Click here for the article Planning for your care 190820

Live-in Home care is a fantastic way to receive care whilst remaining in the familiar surroundings of your home. As with all services it comes with a fee which is considerably less than a nursing home but with many added benefits. Paying for your care or that of your loved one should be planned as early as possible. Paying for Home Care can be a daunting and unfamiliar feeling but there is support out there that you can tap into for either yourself or a loved one – especially if savings may not be an option.

A Class Care Home Care Cambridge has provided you with a list of options that may aid you when funding your care.

Savings – Equity release

Saving’s, equity release, investments, and immediate care annuity.

Savings – Putting money each side over the years to pay for your care is a standard option and can be released slowly for the period that you need care. However, please read the below section detailing what support is available should your savings fall below the threshold.

Equity Release

There are 2 types of equity release available:

Lifetime Mortgage & Home revisions.

Both types of equity release allow you to stay in your home and release money from the property (either as a lump sum or a series of smaller amounts). It is vital that you seek expert advice to ensure that you make the right decision.

Lifetime Mortgage – You can take out a loan against your property and still own it. You do not normally have to make regular interest payments unless you choose to do so. The loan is usually repaid when the property is sold after the last remaining owner passes away

Or moves permanently into a care home.

Can you protect your family’s inheritance?

There are plans available where you can protect your equity. You can choose an amount to protect as a percentage, allowing you to ring fence a portion and feel comfortable that no matter one a portion of your equity is protected.

Home Revisions – You could update your property which could increase the value of the property which could enable you to increase the value of the property. Therefore, taking out the difference between what was paid for the property and the current market value.

Care Annuity

You could secure a guaranteed income with a care funding plan to pay for your care fees. This is known as long term care annuity or immediate needs annuity. This means that you are able to take out insurance policy that pays a regular lifetime income towards your care fees. There are a number of positive advantages to securing a care annuity as it’s the only plan available to help you fund you care for a lifetime and you can use the funds to pay directly to a provider.

We would recommend that you speak to a financial advisor that maybe able to provide you with the full advantages of this funding service.

Local Authority Funding

Currently in the UK care funding is means tested at a level of £23,250.00. This basically means that if you own assets or have savings over £23,250.00 you will be required to pay for your own care. However, if you are unwell or suffer with Dementia or a long-standing debilitating illness you may be eligible for NHS funding through the Continuing Health Care Team (CHC).

If you have funding that is less than £23,250 the local council may assist with funding. Its advisable that you request a care assessment a few months before your capital reaches less than £23,250.00 as there can be some delay with completing the assessment and if approved the cancel funding the care and providing you with you further information.

Benefits

There are state benefits available that are not means tested and are tax-free. If you are under 65 years-old and are looking for help to fund care you may be eligible for the Disability Living Allowance.

If you are over 65 years-old, you may be eligible for Attendance Allowance. The contribution is paid at the rate of £55.10 per week or £82.30 per week, dependant on whether you need 24-hour help.

Here at A Class Care Home Care Service Cambridge we want to encourage all our prospective clients to remain at home for as long as they can. We want to make sure that you have chosen the best option for you and your loved one when it comes to funding options. If you would like to find out more about the cost of care or how to find suitable care then please do not hesitate to contact us on 01223 864 066 or email info@aclasscare.co.uk

 

 

Cause for Applause – A Class Care’s Sponsor

We are pleased to announce that A Class Care have teamed up with the organisation Carers in Bedfordshire. Carers in Bedfordshire have arranged to present a “Cause for Applause” award to individual's who has shown acts of kindness to an "informal carer" within the Bedfordshire County.

This is such a positive initiative that recognises the hard work and often unnoticed kindness that people do daily. Informal carers are what we like to call unsung heroes. They work around the clock to provide care to a loved one's with little to no support. The Carers in Bedfordshirem, is such an important organisation that makes a difference to 1,000's of peoples lives. They support informal carers by providing 1-2-1 support and group session's such as art classes, cookery lessons and more. The Carer's in Bedfordshire service plays a pivotal role with helping people in our community.

What is " Cause for Applause"

We are acknowledging the act's of kindness shown to a informal carer. They will be presented with an award for their efforts.

How do you apply

An informal Carer can nominate an individual who has shown them a small act of kindness such as helping with shopping or something even bigger; for example, giving the informal carer a break.

If you are a carer and would like to nominate an individual for an Award, to say thank you for their act of kindness, then you can register your details and make your nomination on line today by visiting www.carersinbeds.org.uk. Good luck and get nominating.

We did it! 447,234 steps! Ipad’s for our clients – Thank you

Mental Health Week

Mental Health week was from the 18th to the 24th of May 2020. It was a crucial week that helped recognise the importance of keeping your mind healthy and ensuring that the right support services were both available and accessible. We at A Class Care had worked alongside the charity Mind to promote positive well-being outcomes.

During COVID – 19 and self-isolation a number of people had been feeling an arrange of emotions including stress and anxiety. Some of these ailments had been long standing or had been in response to the uncertain times we had been facing.

There is a general view that anxiety mainly effects the younger generation. However, having worked in the care industry for some time we are seeing more and more elderly clients feeling anxious and ultimately withdrawn. These feelings have been exacerbated by the self-imposed isolation.

With the government guidelines stating that vulnerable groups must self-isolate it means that some of our clients have become disconnected from their loved ones. This can further fuel anxiety and depression. Statistics have shown that the biggest mental health impact on the elderly is loneliness. Our Team at A Class Care recognised this and wanted to change the narrative and provide our clients with an opportunity to stay connected with their loved ones without leaving their home.

We had therefore arranged a charity event where all staff members were required to walk a minimum of 5000 steps per day from the period of 18th to 24th May. Our goal was to take 300,000 steps during mental health week. We are pleased to announce that we had managed to achieve 447,234 steps. Our Branch Manager Jane Palmer had come up as the “Top Stepper” as she had walked a whopping 88,808 steps in just 7 days.

In response to Janes achievement she has advised that “ I feel it is excellent to promote Mental Health week as this is often something people are reluctant to speak about. By speaking about Mental Health, it enables people to realise that they can share how they feel and they may not be alone in their situation or aware of support available to them”. When asked how she managed to rack up so many steps she said “taking care of my Lama’s. They are animals that I adore”

The Operations Director was quoted as saying “promoting mental health well-being does not stop but continues on a daily basis. We will do our upmost to care for both our clients and staff”. Mercy Canning, Operations Director.

From the funding that we have received from our Charity event we have purchased iPad’s for our clients. Jane has arranged for our client’s to be presented with this new peace of technology and our carers will support our clients with staying connected with their family members.

We will be watching the great things that our client can achieve with this new equipment and the positive changes on their well-being. We will be updating you all with the lovely photos and feedback received.

We would like to thank everyone for their contributions and helping to keep our clients connected.

 

 

 

 

Ipswich Live In Carer

Mental Health Week – Raising Money for the elderly

As featured in the Bedford Independent

Home care staff at Brickhill’s Class Care are taking on the task of walking 280,000 steps during Mental Health Awareness Week to fundraise for their residents.

A Class Care provides 24-hour live-in care for elderly residents in their own homes, many of whom are experiencing loneliness after being estranged from their loved ones during the lockdown.

“During the COVID pandemic, we have recognised that a number of our clients have experienced extreme loneliness and families have felt an extreme level of guilt and anxiety with not being able to see or care for their loved ones,” explained Mercy Canning of A Class Care.

“We want to encourage safe interaction and we are therefore raising money to purchase iPads and Facebook pods for our clients that are unable to have contact with their family members.”

Mental Health Awareness Week is from 18 – 24 May and the A Class Care team will be working alongside Mind to help raise awareness of mental health issues among the elderly. Their aim is to raise £500 by eight members of the team completing the challenge throughout the week.

“Our Care team have vowed to complete 280,000 steps during mental health week to raise mental health awareness including anxiety, the implications on loneliness and depression with the elderly,” said Mercy.

“Research has shown that loneliness or being estranged from a person’s loved one can cause a number of physiological and emotional health issues; including Alzheimer’s, cognitive disease, anxiety and depression.

“If we can work together to raise awareness of this especially during this time and we can raise enough money to purchase iPads to keep people connected we will be doing our service to our community.”

You can donate to the fundraiser here.

What do Live-In Carers Do?

 

What do Live-In Carers Do?

 What are the duties of a Full Time Carer?

The role of a live-in care worker is to enable clients to remain securely and comfortably within their own homes. The daily duties are tailored around the needs of the client, providing a
1-2-1 bespoke service that meets their individual needs.

A Carer’s role is to ensure a person’s continued quality of life and they are there to fit into the client’s daily routine. Some of the duties that carers perform include bathing, washing, dressing, assistance with personal and oral hygiene, toileting and maintenance of personal appearance including shaving or applying makeup.

PA Assistance

Some of our clients find it difficult to run errands. Live-in carers will provide support with collecting medication from the pharmacist, coordinating appointments with the GP, accompanying clients to medical appointments, posting letters, writing letters, or even sending that important email. A daily routine is essential.

Medication Management

Live-in carers can support clients with administering medication. They work alongside GP’s and hospitals to make certain that they have the correct medication, dose, and supply at the client’s home. Live-in carers take responsibility for the management of medication in all respects. Some clients may have a degenerative disease that prohibits them from taking the medication safely. Support is given to the client ensuring that medication is taken safely and correctly.

Carers should receive ongoing and robust medication training that includes competency assessment before they are able to administer medication. This is overseen by a dedicated Quality assurance assessor.

Medical Conditions

People that are Living with a Terminal illness, Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis will receive support and care from compassionate, skilled, and trained Carers. Trained carers will provide specialist care to individuals in the comfort and familiar surroundings of their own homes, whilst additionally offering emotional support and reassurance to their family.

Our professional Live-In Care team, led by our Quality Care Assessors, can undertake tasks such as managing PEG feeds, Stoma bags and catheters. Our Live-In Carers will liaise with medical professionals to share important information, report changes of symptoms or request Health Care Equipment e.g. arrange a hoist. This service will enhance our client’s quality of life and enable them to live independently at home.

Domestic Duties

A Live-in Carer can perform a wide range of domestic duties. Their tasks can include:

  • Washing the dishes
  • Changing and cleaning bed linen
  • Making the beds
  • Laundry and ironing
  • Prepare shopping lists / Collect shopping
  • Wash and clean away dishes
  • Prepare/ clean dining area
  • Arranging and attending short- or long-term trips

Dementia and Alzheimer’s Care

Living with Dementia can present a number of challenges. Caring for a loved one also presents some challenges which can be scary, frustrating, and demanding. Our Live-In Carers are trained to provide a specialist service using specifically designed techniques to help engage with the clients and keep them mentally stimulated. Our carers have a compassionate and care led approach that preserves our client’s dignity and independence.

Nutrition

Quality Care means that our Live-In Carer’s understand and promote a healthy balanced diet that meets the client’s individual needs. We understand that clients have a range of nutritional needs including religious, ethnic, and medical requirements that we must cater for in order to enhance their overall wellbeing.

Different medical conditions will require unique nutritional needs. Clients with Dementia may require meals prepared on different coloured plates, modified portion sizes or puréed diet due to swallowing difficulties. Our Live-In Carers understand varying needs, nutritional support is constant ensuring clients remain healthy.

Companionship and support

One of the many benefits of Live-In Care is that you have someone with you offering support, encouragement, and engagement. Our Live-In Carers help to increase their overall quality of life. They take the time to sit with the clients to complete puzzles, games or just take time to sit and talk over a cup of tea. Knowing that someone else is in the home can increase an individual’s morale and wellbeing not to mention offering peace of mind.

Live-In Care provides Security and Peace of Mind

Live-In Care is designed to give people peace of mind that their loved one is being looked after within the comfort, security and the familiar surroundings of their own home. Any concerns will be immediately responded to by a trained professional and supportive organisation.

Find out more about our Live-In Care service and the benefits that it provides by clicking here. Or you can speak to our friendly team today by contacting us on 01223 864 066

 

 

 

 

COVID-19 – Live In Care Can Help

Live In Care during COVID-19

A Class Care is committed to providing care solutions that are both safe and will protect our client’s during this difficult time.

Who is at risk

The PHE is encouraging clients that are considered high risk to remain at home.

People at higher risk include those who are over 70, regardless of whether they have a medical condition or not, and people under 70 with any of the following underlying health conditions:

  • chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis, chronic heart disease, such as heart failure, chronic kidney disease, chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson's disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy, diabetes. You can find a full list by clicking here.

It is really important that those clients that are of age and are in a high-risk category must keep themselves safe. The NHS, Public Health England and the World Health Organisation (WHO) who have urged those more vulnerable, to take precautionary measures such as avoiding non-essential travel and to seek help wherever possible.

There maybe circumstances, where you (main carer or a loved one) is self-isolating because you might be in the high category group. In which case care support maybe required. It is important that people are not alone during this critical time (read blog about loneliness) and still receive vital care. Our Live In Care service can help.

A Class Care Live In Care – How Can It Help You

Live In Care is the safest care option available. Our carers will remain in the home for 24 hours per day 7 days per week and they have no interaction with other people. This therefore significantly reduces the risk of cross contamination. Residential care homes have their place. However, there is still a risk of a number of carers visiting a number of different clients within the home. Also, clients would like to remain within the familiar surroundings of their home.

What are the benefits of Live In Care?

  1. 121 Care – The carer will be able to provide all aspects of daily care including shopping, administering medication and support with personal care. Giving, you and your loved one confidents that around the clock care is being provided at in the comfort of their own home.
  2. Priority shopping – We have a list of local food providers that will provide our carers with priority access to food and essentials. Therefore, they will always be in receipt of the things that they need and in some cases the providers will deliver the weekly shopping directly to the home.
  3. Medication – The pharmacist will deliver this safely to the home and the carer will ensure that the correct quantity has been received.
  4. Domestic duties – The carer will ensure that the domestic duties are completed including following the company’s strict infection control policy.
  5. Self-Isolation – Having companionship, ongoing to support during a period of self-isolation is vitally important. Our carers will support our clients with Face Timing loved ones so they do not miss the people that they care about.

Hospital Discharge

It important for the NHS to be supported during this time. We are currently supporting several local hospitals with safely discharging patients into our care.  This includes providing our Live In Care services with as little as 24 hours’ notice. We will ensure that a full care needs assessment is completed and arrange for an experienced carer to provide bespoke support. If your loved one is in hospital and needs immediate care, you can contact our friendly care team today.

We appreciate that the COVID-19 has had an impact on some people and their daily lives. However, we are here to help, and our specialist COVID-19 team are able to provide comprehensive guidance and support. If you have a specific question relating to COVID-19 you can email us at covid19@aclasscare.co.uk alternatively contact our team on 01223 864 066

COVID-19 – A Class Care’s support

A Class Care are working to ensure that we are keeping you, your loved one’s and our community safe. The government has recognized that social care is fundamental to many people out in the community and recognize that support should be readily available. Our efforts and attention has been focused on making sure you are safe.

We wanted to assure you and our future clients that we will be continuing with our normal business functions. We have a robust business continuity plan in place, which is reviewed daily, to ensure that we can minimize the risk of cross contamination. Our proactive approach will help to ensure that we are creating a safe and effective delivery of our services to you.

To reassure you, the following actions have been taken:

  • We have an ACCRT ( A Class Care Rapid Response Team) this are additional carers who are on standby to provide care in an event of an emergency.
  • We have increased our recruitment efforts. All candidates will be subject to the same rigorous checks including DBS( Police checks) and reference checks. This will ensure that we can support not just A Class Care’s clients but other providers. We are extending our resources to hospitals, other care agencies and residential services.
  • All staff have received infection control training and regular updates to keep themselves & our clients safe.
  • We have an FAQ section for clients or their families in case they have additional concerns or questions
  • A dedicated Health & Safety Committee has been set up that will provide sound advise and support to not just the carers but anyone else concerned.
  • All our clients and carers have received PPE including Hand Sanitizers. We have received additional stock to ensure safe hygiene practices are being continually observed
  • Posters on hand hygiene has been placed all over the offices and distributed to the carers
  • Prioritizing Live In Care services to reduce cross contamination
  • All carers have been asked to remain at the property to avoid different carers visiting. Again, to reduce the risk of cross contamination We have advised our clients, professionals and family members to reduce visits. This will help to reduce the risk of cross contamination.
  • Joint working with grocery providers and volunteer services in the community to provide basic provisions to clients that are self-isolating.
  • We are also offering support to families with children that are self-isolating including issuing resources that will help with home schooling.

We appreciate that a number of you may have concerns not only about yourself but for your loved ones. We are happy to help answer any questions and to support you in any way that we can. If you have any questions, you need some advise or guidance, then please contact our Health & Safety Lead mercy.canning@aclasscare.co.uk or call us on 01223 864 066

 

Stay Safe – Coronavirus

A Class Care would like to ensure that we are providing you with information that keeps you or your loved one is safe at home. There has been a lot of information in the public domain. However, we would like to update our clients on our Business Continuity plan and what support will be putting in place for both the carers and clients. A Class Care has formed a Crisis Management team that has devised a plan to manage the potential outbreaks. We are closely following the HSE ( Health & Safety Executives) World Health Organisation, NHS guidelines and the Department of Health and Social Care guidelines (DHS).

If you have visited a number of countries such as:

  1. China
  2. Northern Italy
  3. Special Care Zones in North Korea
  4. Hong Kong
  5. Japan
  6. Macau
  7. Malaysia
  8. Singapore
  9. Taiwan
  10. Thailand

You may be  required to self isolate yourself. Following this link if you feel that you maybe at risk https://111.nhs.uk/service/covid-19

The symptoms of the Coronavirus COVID-19 are as follows:

  1. Difficulty in breathing
  2. A cough
  3. A fever

We have provided you with some guidance notes that is applicable to the care industry.

The DHSC guidelines indicates that it "remains very unlikely that people receiving care in a care home or the community will become infected".

The DHSC has advised care agencies that "there is no need to do anything differently in any care setting at present". However, care staff are being asked to wash their hands frequently with soap and water, or use alcohol sanitiser, to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, especially after taking public transport.

All care staff have been reminded to cover coughs or sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in a bin, and we have instructed staff that may feel unwell to stay at home and not attend work.

A Class Care has a robust hygiene and etiquette policy that includes the following:

  1. Wash hands before leaving home; on arrival at work; after using the toilet; after breaks and sporting activities; before food preparation; before eating any food, including snacks; before leaving work and on arrival home
  2. Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  3. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

If you or a loved one have questions about the Croner Virus then please contact Mercy Canning - Health & Safety Lead. If you are worried about your symptoms please

call NHS 111. Please do not go to their GP or other healthcare environment. Should there be further developments we will update this site and contact our clients directly. 

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