How Wigan Council is investing in the future of the care home market

How Wigan Council is investing in the future of the care home market

By Councillor Keith Cunliffe, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care

Care homes offer an invaluable service to people across the country and here in Wigan Borough we are always looking to make improvements to ensure the market is sustainable long into the future as well as being able to offer the best possible care to those who need it.

We work hand-in-hand with a large number of care providers in the borough who offer a broad range of care from supported living to nursing homes, home care to day services and much more. 

In the spirit of partnership working and knowing that no-one knows the market better than the people in it, we’re asking what can be done even better in Wigan Borough.

It could be opening a new care home, improving the care offer with gentle gyms or a wellbeing offer, adding a new heat pump system or solar panels to an existing home to significantly reduce running costs or installing innovative technology that will help manage falls.

Whatever the idea is, thought-through and costed proposals are all welcome and we are open to ideas and innovations which deliver transformation and improvements. In return, we have a significant £1million “Care Innovation Fund” to share and help make these innovations a reality. 

We will prioritise the funding around the following six transformation themes.

  • Workforce - Supporting recruitment, retention and upskilling of the workforce
  • Capacity - Supporting new and realigned capacity to respond to changing demands
  • Technology - Enabling a reformed menu of care through technology
  • Falls Management - Development of new, least restrictive, innovative approaches
  • Energy Efficiency - Creating greener, more sustainable care services
  • Keeping People Healthy at Home - Building independence, staying healthy and avoiding un-needed hospital admissions

We want to attract the very best providers and provide the very best care and support for the benefit of our residents. We already have a strong health and social care market working with quality providers.  We have achieved this through our ‘ethical framework’ which embodies our approach to working in true partnership working with the very best care and support providers, all of whom share our values, principles, attitudes and behaviours and an absolute commitment to helping people to live happy and fulfilled lives.

Through this approach, consistent investment in fees and innovation, our care provision is strong. Over 91 per cent of Wigan Care Home beds are CQC rated ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ which is the highest in the northwest of England and 11th best in the country. 

We are also proud of the quality of our local homecare and supported living market. In Wigan Borough, 100 per cent of Community Services are now rated ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ by CQC. This is the highest of 23 Northwest authorities and fourth best in England. As with care homes, this has been achieved through a partnership model of quality assurance and improvement, focused on customer experience.

I believe investing in innovative and fresh ideas is the best way for us to shape and support continued development of the care home market across our borough. It is those already working within the sector who can best identify the challenges and most importantly the opportunities to change, improve and break new ground so we couldn’t be more excited to see these proposals. We have a steadfast commitment to building Community Wealth in Wigan Borough using every opportunity to accelerate the widest possible investment from our local markets in to our communities and our borough as a place.

If you are a proud ethical provider, driven by a passion to invest holistically in our local communities whilst delivering the best care and support, we hope that you are attracted and want to join us in shaping the very best, affordable and sustainable care and support for local people which makes a real difference to people’s lives every day.

The deadline for proposal submissions is 2nd June 2023.

For information and to apply please visit Care Market Innovation Fund.

Posted on Friday 26th May 2023

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