Agenda and draft minutes

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No. Item


Apologies for Absence

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Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Yvonne Nolan.


Members Declarations of Interest

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Councillor Mary Jordan

Personal interest by virtue of employment within the NHS; and involvement in Incubabies, a charity raising funds for the neonatal unit at Arrowe Park; and her son’s employment as a GP.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 106 KB

To approve the minutes of the meetings of the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 21st and 29th January 2020 as a correct record.

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Resolved – That the minutes of the meetings of the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on the 21st and 29th January 2020, be approved as a correct record.


2019/20 Q3 Financial Monitoring pdf icon PDF 105 KB

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The Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee received a report of the Senior Finance Manager that set out the financial monitoring information with regard to performance for the area of activity under the committee’s purview. The report covered the financial information for the period as at quarter 3 2019/20.


The report informed that the information had been drawn from the relevant sections of the most recent Cabinet revenue and capital monitoring reports, combined with additional relevant service information on performance against the revenue budget (including savings) and performance against the capital budget.


Members were provided with a short verbal update on two key points within the current reporting period, namely:


Capital Monitoring - Extra Care Housing: Two Extra Care developments which have been awarded Council grant are on currently on site. Barncroft is scheduled for completion in January 2020 and will provide 21 units of Extra Care and the Woodpecker Close site is scheduled for completion in September 2020, providing 78 units. No other developments are planned for this year.


Revenue Monitoring: remains broadly stable and consistent with the quarter two forecast – primarily due to increased demand and complexity of care packages, but particularly so in relation to the provision of domiciliary care. Members were apprised that the increase had been predicted, that as a result of the increased demand during the months of January and February a predicted increase to the deficit was likely.


The Chair thanked the Officer for his report, noting that much of the content had already received a detailed review by the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee as part of the Council’s budget setting process.


Members expressed their support in respect of detailed and timely reporting on budgetary matters and highlighted their desire for the regular reporting to continue in the next Municipal Year 2020/21.


Resolved – That the report be noted.


ADASS Peer Review Action Plan pdf icon PDF 85 KB

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Simon Garner, Lead Commissioner All Age Independence introduced the report of the Assistant Director Health and Care Outcomes that informed that, in May 2019, a Peer Review had taken place in Wirral focusing on the quality of front-line Adult Social Work practice. Mr Garner was accompanied by Sarah Alldis, Associate Director for Social Care (Wirral Community Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust) and Adrian Moss, Transformation Manager (Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust).


The report informed that social work services were provided by two Health Trusts under a section 75 agreement and provided a summary on how the review had been led by a regional team of Directors and senior leaders in Adult Social Care, supported by the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) in the North West, and the Local Government Association (LGA). The review was presented to Cabinet on 25 November 2019.


The Lead Commissioner All Age Independence confirmed that Members had requested the opportunity to consider the development plan that had emerged from the findings and recommendations of the review. Members were then apprised that current contractual and governance arrangements had reported ongoing and very positive performance across the services. 


In conjunction with the report, the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee received a presentation on a Development Plan following on from the Peer Review.


The Associate Director for Social Care (Wirral Community Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust) apprised on the following key areas:



  • Front-line Practice – were current arrangements providing opportunities for improved outcomes for individuals?
  • Outcome based practice – To what extent a
  • were practice outcomes focused in line with the Care Act?
  • Was the Professional Status of Social Work being maintained across the system?


Identified Benefits

  • External validation and challenge for the new model
  • Platforms for further development / setting priorities
  • Assurance for the Board and DASS
  • Likely strengthening of social care regulation


Overarching Findings

  • Recognition of the success: everyone said it was the “right thing to do”
  • The leadership teams value and support social work teams
  • Better outcomes for individuals through MDT working - improved coordination, response and understanding
  • Strength Based Approach plan in place and having an impact
  • Good focus on prevention and early intervention at the ‘front door’
  • Positive changes to Governance structures to ensure integrated approach
  • Training Opportunities and Career progression in place with opportunities to enhance further


The Chair thanked the Officers and congratulated all involved in the Peer Review and implementation of actions arising.


Resolved – That the report be noted.


Public Health and Housing pdf icon PDF 180 KB

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The Chair welcomed Julie Webster, Director for Health and Wellbeing and Rachael Musgrave, Consultant in Public Health.


The Chair highlighted that this particular subject area had been requested by the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny following receipt of the Annual Public Health Report at its meeting held on 19 November 2019 (Minute 32 refers).


Director for Health and Wellbeing’s report informed how a warm and safe home was essential for good health. Poor housing conditions, overcrowding, temporary accommodation, fuel poverty, homelessness and insecurity were a risk to health. Affordable, quality housing was not only, therefore, a basic need but a major contributor to an individual’s wellbeing. It enabled people to access basic services, build good relationships and maintain independence, resulting in a better quality of life[1]. However, some of the most vulnerable groups in our community were among those most likely to live in poor housing.


The report further informed that housing, and its impact on health, was a broad and complex area covering a wide range of issues. At the request of the Chair, the report focused on the quality of housing, the availability of housing at a cost that people can afford and the quality of the private rental market in Wirral.The affordability of local housing, rates of homelessness, and the quality and availability of supported housing locally all influenced health outcomes. 


Members were provided an overview of the key issues and the report highlighted the existing work being carried out across Wirral to improve housing standards for the most vulnerable residents.


Members question the Director on a variety of issues that included:


  • Housing as a basic need and key determinate in contributing to an individual’s health.
  • Physical property conditions / air quality a highly complex issue.
  • Research into damp – a major contributor to respiratory illness (particularly children and older people)
  • An issue that the new local plan will need to address - not just new housing, but older stock too


Members further debated actions being taken to reduce health inequalities, helping inform future policies and identified further areas to investigate in more detail in the future. The Chair expressed disappointment that housing officers had been unable to attend the meeting.


Other matters of debate and areas of concern to Members included:


  • The issue of HMOs and how, under planning law, there was currently no way to turn these down, thereby ‘enabling’ (or allowing development of) ‘future slums’.
  • Air quality (also discussed at the recent Health and Wellbeing Board meeting)
  • Concerns over the conversion of office accommodation into housing.
  • New developments closer to Motorways – and whether monitoring of air quality would have an impact on permissions.
  • What systems were in place for GPs to refer and record patients whose issues stem from poor living conditions.


The Director of Public Health apprised Members of the Primary Care Network Social Prescribing, Healthy Homes initiatives, Grants for home energy and the development of links into social services.


The Chair further apprised Members of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 55.


2019/20 Quarter 3 Wirral Plan Performance pdf icon PDF 102 KB

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The Director of Adult Care and Health introduced his report that provided the 2019/20 Quarter 3 (October - December 2019) performance for the Wirral Plan pledges under the remint of the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee. The report provided an overview on progress in Quarter 3 and available data in relation to a range of outcome indicators and supporting measures. The report also included further performance information that had been requested by Members to enable effective scrutiny.


The report summary provided information on the following 3 key areas:


  Older People Live Well

  People with Disabilities Live Independent Lives

  Zero Tolerance to Domestic Violence


The Director of Adult Care and Health reported on the key Indicators within report, and informed Members that generally little had changed little since his last report. One area of significant improvement had been identified in the area of employment, however the healthy life expectancy figures were disappointing.


Members questioned the Director on the content of his report identifying specific areas where lack of up to date information was causing concern.


Resolved – That the report be noted.


Report of the Health and Care Performance Working Group pdf icon PDF 106 KB

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The Chair introduced the report of Head of Intelligence, Statutory Scrutiny Officer that provided anoverview of the Health and Care Performance Working Group meeting held on 20 January 2020. The report provided feedback to members of the Adult Care and Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee around key discussions and areas of interest resulting from the meeting namely detailed updates on:


  • Musculoskeletal Integrated Triage Service – Patient Experience and Service; and
  • Change, Grow, Live (CGL) Drug and Alcohol Service Update.


Members noted the work undertaken by the Health and Care Performance Working Group.


Resolved – That the report be noted.


Adult Care and Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee Work Programme Update pdf icon PDF 113 KB

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The Chair introduced the report of the Head of Intelligence, Statutory Scrutiny Officer that provided an update regarding progress made since the last Committee meeting held on 27 January 2020. The report informed that the current work programme was made up of a combination of scrutiny reviews, workshops, standing items and requested officer reports. The report provided information on two key reviews, namely:


  • 5G and Public Health; Following interest from Members, and a public question at the Council meeting of 14 October 2019, a workshop for all Members on the implications of the roll out of 5G on Wirral had been requested. The workshop was provisionally scheduled to take place in March 2020.


  • Review of Draft Quality Accounts 2019/20; Under the National Health Service (Quality Accounts) Regulations 2010 (and later the National Health Service (Quality Accounts) Amendment Regulations 2012), healthcare providers publishing Quality Accounts are required to send a draft of the Quality Account to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and invite comments on the document. The Quality Account provides information on performance across the year and identifies the priorities for improvement during the forthcoming year.


The report of the Head of Intelligence, Statutory Scrutiny Officer also contained a list of topics for future consideration, work programme activities with suggested dates / deadlines.


Members made special mention with regard to ensuring continued Councillor involvement on the issue of Urgent Care Treatment in Wirral.


Members noted that the governance arrangements of the Council had recently been reviewed and as of May 2020, the current scrutiny model and committee structure would change. The Chairs of all four current Overview & Scrutiny Committees had been working collaboratively to address cross-cutting matters and ensure that the necessary prioritisation and scheduling of existing Committee work programmes had taken place, to ensure continuity of programme items under the new Committee System.


The Chair and Vice Chair took the opportunity to thank Members, Officers and all those involved in the work of, and support to, the Overview and Scrutiny Committee over the past year - this being the last meeting of the Committee in its current form.


Resolved – That


1)  arrangements for prioritisation and scheduling of the existing Adult Care and Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee work programme post May 2020 be noted; and


2)  the Chair and Party Spokespersons be authorised to review the draft Quality Accounts 2019/20 of local health partners and to provide a response on behalf of the Adult Care and Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee.