• To fully realise the Frailty ICARE Toolkit, a robust workforce infrastructure is required for people who receive care and services, for people who deliver care and services and for commissioners.
  • There are two huge challenges facing the care system today; an ageing population and a workforce resource challenge.
  • These challenges are compounded by the fact that we have capacity and capability gaps within our existing workforce that cares for older people, not least because traditionally only medicine had speciality focused training.

Skills for Health, NHS England, and Health education England have developed a core capabilities framework to support development of the workforce caring for older people living with frailty –

Enhanced Health in Care Homes (NHSE) – learning guide on ‘workforce development’ –

Fusion48 –

Resources on values based recruitment, Health Education England (2016) –

Nursing times / Care England Microsite

Resources for Older People Nurses –

Resources for Learning Disability Nurses –

Care sector resources –

NHS people plan –

First Contact physiotherapist NHSE (specification) –

Specialist pharmacist –

Update 2023:

The priority is to secure substantive funding and a permanent home for EnCOP which must be aligned to its principles of being research competent, clinically expert, educationally linked and skilled in practice development.  This will allow progress of:

  • A passport across organisations
  • A mixed site cross organisational approach to implementation
  • The inclusion of informal carers; biggest workforce 7 million
  • Competency linked to educational frameworks
  • Competency linked to knowledge, skills and job roles
  • Development of apprenticeship frameworks
  • Support for a common language for ageing well and frailty
  • Cultural awareness developments that support local improvements
  • A continually refreshed framework in terms of evidence
  • Co-production and collaboration with health inequalities leaders for inclusion of marginalised communities

Update 2018:

The NENC Ageing Well Network was successful in its bid to the ICS Workforce Transformation and Sustainability Board to progress one of its workforce initiatives using a competency framework specific to the needs of older people.  The successful bid was for two Strategic Workforce Development Lead posts to support workforce developments for our ageing population using the Enhanced Care of Older People Competency Framework (EnCOP).  Pilot locations are from each of the 4  ICPs and include social care, the independent care sector and the NHS.


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