Agenda and minutes

Health and Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Monday 11th April 2022 10:00am

Venue: Council Chamber, County Buildings, Stafford. View directions

Contact: Deb Breedon  Email:


No. Item


Declarations of Interest

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Minutes of the last meeting held on 15 March 2022 pdf icon PDF 215 KB

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Resolved that the minutes of the meeting 15 March 2022 be approved and signed as a correct record.


Cannock Minor Injuries Unit (MIU) Update

Clinical Commissioning Group to provide a verbal update

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The Director of Communications and Corporate Services for the 6 Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG) and Integrated Care System (ICS) provided a verbal update relating to Cannock MIU.

Committee was advised that the CCG was looking to provide a step-in provider to provide services at the Cannock MIU for the people of Cannock and that they were working towards re-opening the service in June 2022.


  1. That the update on Cannock Minor Injuries Unit be noted.



Care Home Update pdf icon PDF 250 KB

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Care Home Update

The Director of Health and Care provided the Care Home update report as requested at a meeting on 31 January 2022.


He updated Committee on changes since the last meeting including:

·       The Discretionary Fee Review

·       Care home Covid controls relaxed - restrictions on visiting activity and admissions were required in event of Covid outbreak.


The Director advised Government guidance had also been updated and that in relation to paragraph 3c(i) relating to Covid tests,  the following now applied: (i) there was no longer a requirement for staff contacts to take a PCR test, this had been replaced by (ii) a requirement for staff for to take Lateral Flow Tests (LFT) in the event they were contacts. Also, (iii) in case of an outbreak at a care home all staff and residents would need to take LTF and PCR tests.


The Committee noted the following comments and responses to questions:

·       The Council’s increase in fees for residential and nursing home placements for 2022/23 was 6.24% and this had been offered to providers with the application of a 3% quality premium for some placements and a 3% productivity saving for others. This would reduce the variation in care home fees, and was consistent with Government’s adult social care reforms with the requirement to determine and move towards a Fair Cost of Care for each local authority area, with additional funding provided through the “Market Sustainability and Fair cost of Care Fund: purpose and conditions 2022 to 2023”.

·       Quality premium. Committee was assured that the Council would continue to work with all care homes to maintain and improve quality with a combination of support and challenge. There would be a particular focus on care homes rated as requires improvement by the Care Quality Commission.

·       Fair cost of care. It was clarified that this would tend to equalise payments between local authority and privately funded individuals. Committee understood that this would typically cost local authorities more and privately funded individuals less, albeit with a varying impact on local authorities and people self-funding their care. 

·       It was too early to estimate the cost to the Council. Estimates were difficult to calculate for a range of reasons but there were national tools being developed to help calculate  the Fair Cost of Care that would be used.

·       There was increasing concern nationally that Government funding for all adult social care funding reforms was substantially short of their actual cost and Government was being lobbied by Local Government to ensure reforms were properly funded and that there were not un-costed liabilities falling on local authorities.

·       It was clarified that with the introduction of cap on care costs and capital thresholds, people self-funding their care could come to the Council for a Care Act assessment and financial assessment. It was expected that the increase in assessments would require considerable resources for the extra staff, and that the extra requirement would have to be estimated based on number of self-funders currently in the County with sensitivity analyses  ...  view the full minutes text for item 76.


NHS approach to Climate Change - Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Integrated Care System (ICS) Plan pdf icon PDF 459 KB

Report of the North Staffordshire Combined Healthcare NHS Trust and Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent ICS

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System Approach to Climate Change

The Executive Director Partnerships and ICS Senior Responsible Officer for Sustainability provided a report and presentation detailing the wide-ranging programme of change that the NHS was undertaking to address the challenge of climate change.

The committee noted that the NHS had an ambitious target to become net carbon zero by 2045, initially tackling emissions from within the NHS by 2040, and to work with and influence partners in the supply chain to reduce emissions by 2045. The NHS carbon footprint was 5% of the UK total and acute hospitals were the biggest contributor to carbon footprint in the NHS, with primary care a second contributor.

The update captured work that had been done to date, the work currently in progress and the work that would need to be done over the coming years. It was explained that the NHS could not deliver all of these measures in isolation and would require the support of, and ability to work with, a wide range of partners across Staffordshire including Local Authorities at both upper and lower tier level.

Each ICS was required to produce a plan, the Staffordshire & Stoke-on-Trent Integrated Care System (ICS) Green Plan (the plan) was in place by 31st March 2022 and a webinar launch was planned in May 2022, which Members would be invited join.

An ICS work group had been formed to bring forward ideas to develop delivery of the plan and it was noted that ICS was in conversation with Staffordshire County Council about adding the NHS voice to the recently formed Staffordshire Sustainability Board.

The main areas of focus and timelines for the Green Plan were outlined and a case study – ‘keep well keep warm’ was given to demonstrate how investment in solar panels at hospitals in Staffordshire had generated a return which had been invested in a local charity ‘Beat the cold’ to address issues that had an impact on the health of residents.

Committee noted the following comments and responses to questions:

·       In relation to forty new hospitals to be built in the UK as part of the government’s Health Infrastructure Plan, it was not yet known if a net zero hospital was to be built in Staffordshire. However, it was confirmed that new estates guidance would apply to all new NHS buildings to ensure they would be net zero or contribute towards becoming net zero.

·       In relation to the retrofit of NHS buildings scheme, there would be a review of the NHS estate to establish the baseline position, bring forward a programme of works and as part of that give consideration to optimising estate and how to address issues such as energy efficiency moving forward.

·       Anchor Institution Approach – In the NHS long term plan there were commitments for the NHS to pursue, one about sustainability and one about anchor institutions approach, anchor institutions were routed in communities, such as Local Authorities and Universities that tended to employ in the community, provide services in the community  ...  view the full minutes text for item 77.


Spotlight Review of Sexual Harassment in Schools Draft Report pdf icon PDF 640 KB

Report of the Spotlight Review of Sexual Harassment in Schools Working Group

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The Vice-Chair Scrutiny introduced the draft report and recommendations of the Sexual Harassment in schools work group.

Committee noted the following comments made relating to the draft report:

  • The power of having dialogue and sharing best practice amongst different schools in a smaller format was a suitable alternative.
  • In terms of inclusivity, it was suggested that information about inclusivity be made available - regarding potential for people to abstain or not participate.
  • When people needed to make a disclosure, they would need to know who, in a position of trust, they could turn to. Young women may have concerns about turning to the police, in light of recent events, and whether to have confidence and trust in the police.
  • In the past some schools had multi agency centres in schools where young people could link up with a trusted adult to discuss concerns. During the pandemic growth in demand in mental health (MH) services had increased, members were interested to see if schools had long wait lists for young people to access MH support and if it was improving.
  • A member identified parallels between this issue and other work, namely the Voice Programme and the Mental Health Support Teams (MHST) in schools.
  • The Chairman questioned whether there was a role for peer mentors and peer role models, and if there was a mechanism, or early warning system to identify behaviours which were unusual for the individual which could indicate there was an issue.
  • The Chairman identified potential for an increased role for school Governors, to make sure that that they were satisfied in their schools and colleges, that sexual harassment in schools was taken seriously as an agenda.
  • The report had been shared with everyone that had participated as a draft for comment. Next stages – the report would be considered by scrutiny committees. Comments would then be collated and a final version to the Cabinet Member(s) to respond to the recommendations.


The Chairman concluded that the report was comprehensive, timely and useful. He suggested that as the report was cross cutting the Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee could determine which committee should monitor the recommendations.




  1. That the draft report and recommendations of the ‘Spotlight Review of Sexual Harassment in Schools’ be endorsed.
  2. That the comments of the Health and Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee where appropriate be included in the final report to Cabinet.

  3. That the final report be circulated to all members.



District and Borough Activity Update pdf icon PDF 233 KB

Report of the District and Borough Representatives

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District and Borough representatives presented update reports and highlighted the following matters being considered at District and Borough meetings.


  1. That the District and Borough Updates be noted.



Work Programme 2021- 22 pdf icon PDF 317 KB

Report of the Scrutiny and Support Officer

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The Chairman introduced the work programme.


Before commencing consideration of the work programme the Chairman advised that since the last meeting of this Committee the final stages of the Ockenden Review Report had been published.


The Chairman had met with the Chief Executive Designate ICS to discuss Staffordshire’s response and was satisfied that an initial review of the recommendations verses the maternity services in Staffordshire had been carried out and services were found to be on a green rating on the Red, Amber Green (RAG) scale.


The Director of Communications and Corporate Services ICS advised that Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent ICS would have to consider maternity services again in light of the Ockenden report recommendations and the need to determine if any amendments would need to be made to the Transformation Programme in relation to the future of maternity services.


It was highlighted that one of the key things to look at when this comes to scrutiny was staffing and skills levels in maternity services. There were concerns about the waiting list for maternity services, which had increased 60% and was the highest ever. The Chairman agreed that vacancy level in Staffordshire could be looked at before June, he suggested that members read the Ockenden report and advised that women’s health was on the future plan for the committee.


The Chairman confirmed that a special meeting would not be necessary at this time but that the Committee would consider the Ockenden review outcomes and recommendations when this committees receives its scheduled update report on maternity services in July or September 2022. The Chairman suggested that new committee in 2022-23 take all comments on board.


The next meeting of the Health and Care Committee takes place on 30 May 2022.

  1. That Committee note the work programme update
  2. The Chairman thanked the members, officers and for hard work and insight during the year.
  3. Councillor Hewitt thanked Councillor Jeremy Pert for being an excellent Chairman of the Health and Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee in 2021-22 municipal year.