Agenda and minutes

Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee - Tuesday 5 March 2024 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber - Shire Hall, Gloucester. View directions

Contact: Joanne Moore  Email: jo.moore@gloucestershire.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

To note any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Cllrs Pam Tracey and Steve Robinson. Cllr Robinson was represented at the meeting by Cllr David Drew.

 

Cllrs Cate Cody and Susan Williams joined the meeting remotely.

2.

Declarations of Interest

To note any declarations of interest.

Minutes:

Cllr Susan Williams declared a non-prejudicial as a volunteer Governor of the Hospital Education Management Committee.

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 141 KB

To confirm the minutes of the joint meeting of the Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee and the Health, Overview and Scutiny Committee meeting held on 11 January 2024.

 

To note any outstanding actions from this and any previous meetings.

Minutes:

The minutes of the joint committee meeting of the Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee and the Health, Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 11 January 2024 were confirmed and agreed as a correct record of that meeting.

 

Members received a summarised overview of the recent visit by some members of the committee to HM Coroner’s Office for Gloucestershire, Barnwood, Gloucester on 25 January 2024.  

 

In attendance at the visit were: -

Cllr Lisa Spivey

Cllr Cate Cody

Cllr Susan Williams

Cllr Suzanne Williams

Cllr Carole Allaway Martin

Adam Openshaw (Assistant Chief Fire Officer)

Jo Moore (Democratic Services at Gloucestershire County Council)

 

The Chair thanked the Coroner’s Office for a very worthwhile and informative visit.

4.

Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Update pdf icon PDF 139 KB

An update on work to address the issue of homelessness and rough sleeping in Gloucestershire.

 

Ruth Saunders and Sharne Mayer from the Gloucestershire Housing Partnership will contribute to the discussion and respond to questions.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The committee received a detailed presentation on homelessness and rough sleeping in Gloucestershire.

 

Helen Flitton, Head of Commissioning, Complex Needs, at Gloucestershire County Council, Ruth Saunders, Corporate Director, Gloucester City Council and Sharne Maher, Partnership Programme Manager, Gloucestershire Housing Partnership, presented the item and responded to questions.

 

To view the power-point presentation presented at the meeting, please refer to the link here

 

During the update, members were informed that the number of people reported as rough sleeping during the winter of 2023/24 had recently seen a slight decrease in the Cotswold and Stroud areas, in conjunction with a slight increase in the number of people rough sleeping in the more urban setting of Gloucester. It was noted that the recent decision to adapt the unoccupied council owned Wheatridge Court facility to provide short-term supported accommodation for refugees residing in Gloucestershire, and at risk of rough sleeping, would help to alleviate some of the issues.

 

It was explained that ‘rough sleepers’ represented a small percentage of the overall homelessness picture for the county and was the most visible form of homelessness. The number of ‘hidden homeless’ people included people classified as ‘sofa surfing’, staying temporarily with family or friends, or in hostels or temporary accommodation.

 

Members were introduced to the work of the Gloucestershire Housing Partnership. The Gloucestershire Housing Partnership, formally known as the Gloucestershire Strategic Housing Partnership, includes representatives from each of the 6 District Authorities, the County Council, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC), the NHS Gloucestershire Integrated Care Board (ICB) and Registered Housing Providers (RPs).

 

The purpose of the Partnership is “to ensure that everyone living in Gloucestershire has a home to meet their needs and to enable them to live healthy, happy and successful lives”. The Partnership provides strategic leadership and acts as the voice for housing in Gloucestershire.

 

It does this by facilitating and promoting links between health and wellbeing and housing sectors; adopting a trauma informed approach to addressing key housing issues for people living in Gloucestershire; responding to and seeking to influence local, regional and national housing policy; supporting and encouraging the development of high-quality energy efficient new housing and improving and making best use of existing homes; producing data and contract monitoring for use by the Programme Management Group; maximising funding opportunities and making best use of collective resources; and supporting improvements/adaptation of existing housing stock to ensure best use to meet the needs of changing communities. A key objective of the Partnership is to represent and amplify the voices of those people with lived experience of the services available to them, to help shape contracts and commissioning to reflect this.

 

Issues raised during the discussion, included: -

 

      i.         The challenges of having to respond to changes in government legislation and the lack of clarity in response to the changes.

 

     ii.         The difficulties of engaging with/offering support to everyone experiencing homelessness. It was acknowledged that not everyone wanted to engage or receive support. Nevertheless, progress was being made  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Director of Public Health Annual Report 2023: Just Another Drop: The Ripple Effect of Alcohol pdf icon PDF 2 MB

At the Adult Social and Communities Scrutiny Committee meeting on 14 November 2023, members noted the context and timelines of the Director of Public Health’s Annual Report 2023 ‘Just Another Drop – the Ripple Effect of Alcohol’. It was explained that the purpose of the report was to raise awareness of the issues surrounding alcohol, including the significant effects on the culture and economy of Gloucestershire and the potential harm excessive alcohol can cause.

 

The report was published on the Gloucestershire County Council website in late November and can be viewed at the link here.   

 

A video on the background and the work invested in the development of the report can be viewed at the link here. Members are encouraged to watch the video in preparation for the meeting.

 

 

Minutes:

5.1 Siobhan Farmer, Director of Public Health for Gloucestershire, presented the Director of Public Health Annual Report 2023. Prior to publication, the report, including context and timelines was introduced at the committee meeting on 14 November 2023.

 

5.2 Entitled, ‘Just Another Drop – the Ripple Effect of Alcohol’, the report is available on the Gloucestershire County Council website and can be viewed at the link here.

 

5.3 An information video, detailing the background and development of the report, can be viewed at the link here. Members commended the video and expressed their appreciation for the honesty in sharing such a personal experience.

 

5.4 It was explained that the purpose of the report was to raise awareness of the issues surrounding alcohol dependency, including the impact on relationships, on society and on the economy of Gloucestershire, including the potential harm alcohol can create.

 

5.4 Nationally, it is estimated that 1.6% of admissions to hospital in England are a direct result of alcohol. 5.7% of admissions to hospital include alcohol as a factor. The cost of this to the NHS is significant, with estimated current costs reaching an estimated £3.5 billion per year in England in 2023.

 

5.5 To illustrate the extent of the harm alcohol can have on families and on local communities, members were advised of the following detail, (based on information at the time of the meeting):

 

1)    Consistent patterns have emerged to reflect increasing harm from alcohol is often associated with deprivation and urban living.

 

2)    The two main urban districts of Gloucester and Cheltenham are reported as experiencing the highest levels of harm, whereas the lowest levels of harm are evident in the more rural districts of Cotswold and Stroud, which have lower deprivation levels comparatively.

 

3)    Alcohol-specific hospital admissions were highest in Cheltenham (694 per 100,000) and Gloucester (678 per 100,000) and lowest in Stroud (467 per 100,000) and Cotswold (371 per 100,000).

 

4)    Gloucestershire outcomes are largely in line with, or better than, the English averages for most alcohol related indicators.

 

5)    Data recorded in 2021 differs most noticeably in the mortality rates for chronic liver disease, with Gloucestershire fairing significantly worse than the English average. It was clarified that the data recorded in 2021 only provided a one-year snapshot and was therefore somewhat limited when making comparisons for a longer time-period. Data recorded during 2017-2019 identified Gloucestershire as performing significantly better than the English average.

 

6)    Members were informed that deaths from alcoholic liver disease presented an important reflection of the impact drinking was having across the population, including illustrating notable changes in drinking patterns amongst heavy drinkers.

 

7)    Comparative data revealed a significant and sustained increase in the rate of unplanned admission to hospitals for alcoholic liver related disease from June 2020 onwards.

 

8)     In 2020, Gloucestershire had seen a 20% increase in the number of alcohol specific deaths, compared to 2019. 

 

5.6 Considering data relating to young people, it was reported that over the past decade, and in line with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Adult Social Care Update pdf icon PDF 527 KB

An overview of information on matters relating to the delivery of Adult Social Care in Gloucestershire. The information will be taken as read at the meeting before members are invited to ask questions on the contents of the report.

 

Members to note Appendix 1 of the report: Gloucestershire County Council Fairer Contributions Policy Consultation Booklet.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

6.1 Introducing the report, Sarah Scott, Executive Director for Adult Social Care, Well-being and Communities, gave a summarised overview of the work of the Adult Social Care Team, (within the scope of the committee terms of reference), including anticipated issues and activities that may require consideration by the committee during 2023-24.

 

6.2 To view the report published with the agenda in advance of the meeting,  please refer to the link here.

 

Highlighted information referred to at the meeting included: -

 

6.3 Gloucestershire Market Position Statement (MPS). The current MPS was written in 2018. Since that time, the care needs of the Gloucestershire population has changed significantly, making it timely to revisit and update the document. The MPS is for use by both existing and potential providers, helping them to shape respective business plans to support the council’s vision for adult social care in the future.

 

6.4 To inform the development of the MPS in Gloucestershire, consultancy firm Newton Europe was commissioned to work alongside business intelligence teams and make an in-depth study of demand and capacity in the commissioning of social care for the county. The findings from the analysis will be considered alongside stakeholder feedback and narrative data. A draft version of the document will be presented to Cabinet in May, seeking agreement prior to publication on the County Council website. The published version of the document will be presented at the July committee meeting. Action by – Adult Social Care

 

6.5 Preparing for CQC Assessment - following on from the member briefing on 9 January 2024, the committee was reminded of the requirement under the Health & Care Act 2022 of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) assessment of local authorities and Integrated Care Systems. The CQC assurance process covers all the local authorities’ responsibilities under the Care Act 2014, in addition to links to the Mental Health Act and the Mental Capacity Act, for which the CQC will assess the council’s performance for these areas.

 

6.6 Members were informed that the CQC had commenced sending out notifications of the first planned inspections in December 2023, allowing a 9-week notification prior to onsite visits. An overview of response timelines and anticipated activities was noted at the meeting.

 

6.7 A member requested an update on the accommodation arrangements for the residents of a private supported living facility located in Cheltenham, following notification of the closure of the facility. Members were advised that the Adult Social Care Team continued to work closely with the residents and families affected by the closure to find alternative accommodation. It was noted that the County Council had no authority to prevent the closure.

 

6.8 Responding to questions, the Executive Director of Adult Social Care noted the request for an item to be added to the committee work plan on the delivery of occupational therapy in the county. The Executive Director agreed to liaise with Cllr Cate Cody after the meeting to scope out the request and to agree timings. Action by - Executive Director of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Public Health Update pdf icon PDF 182 KB

An overview of information on matters relating to the delivery of Public Health Services in Gloucestershire. The information to be taken as read at the meeting before members are invited to ask questions on the contents of the report.

 

Included in the report is an update on the information presented to the committee in September 2022, outlining the benefits of adopting a ‘behavioural science informed approach’ to the design and delivery of services.

Minutes:

7.1 Siobhan Farmer, Director of Public Health, introduced the Public Health Update Report, and highlighted anticipated issues and activities that may require consideration by the committee during 2023-24.

 

7.2 To view the report published with the agenda in advance of the meeting, please refer to the link here.

 

Key information noted at the meeting included –

 

7.3 Measles outbreak – in response to the rising number of outbreaks, the UK Health Security Agency had recently declared a national incident. The majority of cases, (mainly primary school children), had been in the London and West Midlands areas. The last outbreak of measles in the South West region and in Gloucestershire had been in 2018. During the current incident, (2024), there had been a very small number of cases of measles in the county.

 

7.4 In Gloucestershire, the uptake in the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine was below the national and World Health Organization targets of 95% for childhood immunisations, (primarily in the urban inner-city areas). Action by system partners to offer vaccinations to those who had not yet taken up the offer had been underway for some time through local and targeted communications, national call and recall programmes and pop-up clinics in community settings. In addition, national and local campaigns were being promoted through existing community channels and via social media. Members were urged to promote and encourage the take up of the vaccine within their communities.

 

7.5 Responding to questions, it was agreed to include an update on the work to address anti vaccine campaigners in the County, and the challenges they create as part of the Public Health Update Report at the May Committee meeting. Action by Public Health Team

 

7.6 Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) – a Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) looks at the current and future health and care needs of local populations to inform and guide the planning and buying of health, wellbeing and social care services for an area. The Gloucestershire Joint Strategic Needs Assessment is the responsibility of the Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Board (HWBB). Summarised information relating to the delivery of core health and wellbeing board priorities are available on the Gloucestershire County Council INFORM web pages. Topics include housing, antimicrobial resistance, healthy weight and mental wellbeing.

 

7.7 Behavioural Science Update – members recalled a presentation to the committee in September 2022, outlining the benefits of adopting a behavioural science informed approach to the design and delivery of health services and examples of behavioural science in practice. The benefits of upskilling the health and care workforce in the use of behavioural science approaches was acknowledged by the Committee. Members were informed that Public Health Commissioners had been working with colleagues from the Southwest Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID) to support the development of a regional Behavioural Science Hub. The aim of the Hub was to create a behavioural science community of practice and to refresh and increase knowledge on the topic of behavioural science.

 

7.8 Stop Smoking Services  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Chief Fire Officer Update pdf icon PDF 208 KB

An overview of information on matters relating to the portfolio of services delivered by the Chief Fire Officer of the Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service and within the remit of the Gloucestershire County Council’s Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee, (Trading Standards and Coroner Services). The report will be taken as read and any highlighted information noted at the meeting.

 

Members will be invited to ask questions on the contents of the report.

 

Minutes:

8.1 Chief Fire Officer and Director of Community Safety, Mark Preece, gave a detailed overview of the work of the Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service in relation to the areas of responsibility within the scope of the committee terms of reference. These include: Coroners Services and Trading Standards.

 

8.2 To view the report published with the agenda in advance of the meeting, please refer to the link here.

 

8.3 Members reiterated their appreciation of the recent visit to the Coroners Court, Gloucester and commended the work of the Coroner’s Office. It was noted that there had been a recent ‘seasonal’ increase in the number of cases for consideration and the higher than average demand for services in Gloucestershire in comparison with other areas. It was hoped increased staffing levels would ease some of the pressures on the service.

 

The report was noted.

9.

Work Plan pdf icon PDF 105 KB

To note the committee work plan and suggest items for consideration at future meetings

Minutes:

Members noted the dates of meetings and items identified for consideration on: - 

 

14 May 2024

23 July 2024

10 September 2024

12 Nov 2024

 

Other topics suggested as items to include on the committee work plan included: - 

 

1)    Vaping – changes in legislation

2)    Community Day Centres – the role and function of community centres in Gloucestershire