Agenda and minutes

Health Scrutiny Committee
Wednesday, 18th September, 2019 7.00 pm

Venue: Meeting Romms A&B

Contact: Julie Gallagher 

No. Item



Members of Health Scrutiny Committee are asked to consider whether they have an interest in any of the matters on the agenda and if so, to formally declare that interest.


There were no declarations of interest made at the meeting.




Questions are invited from members of the public present at the meeting on any matters for which this Committee is responsible.


There were no questions from members of the public present at the meeting.



MINUTES pdf icon PDF 54 KB

Minutes from the meeting on the 25th June 2019 are attached.


That the minutes of the meeting held on 25 June 2019 be approved as a correct record.




Julie Gonda, Interim Executive Director Communities and Wellbeing and Adrain Crook, Assistant Director Social Care will report at the meeting.  Report attached.


Adrian Crook, Assistant Director Adult Social Care, submitted a report setting out details of the number of allegations of abuse in care home locations received by the CQC between 2014 and 2018. It was reported that a Bury Times article had correctly reported the data which was tabled in response to the parliamentary question but had not unfortunately included the rationale which clearly explained the reasons for the increases. It was explained that if included this would have given a different view. Whilst it imperative that the Council effectively tackles abuse and deal with perpetrators of abuse, there is also a duty to support care providers learn and improve and as such the Council do not want to discourage them from reporting incidents from which we can help them learn.


The report concluded that the Council must also work with and support care providers to make sure there is enough high quality provision within the area to support an ageing population. It was reported that the connection of Elizabeth House to the Bury Times article was undeserved and poses unnecessary risk to the sustained delivery of Good quality care at this home.


It was reported that Safeguarding vulnerable people will remain a key priority for Bury Council and its partners and it is right, proper and welcome that scrutiny is given to our approach to local care provision and responses to abuse. However, it is essential that the Council are cognisant and aware of the wider negative impact to social care provision and our endeavour to encourage a system of learning and improvement such an article can have.


It was agreed:


That the report be noted




Kat Sowden Managing Director, Persona will report at the meeting.  Report and Appendices are attached.

Additional documents:


Kat Sowden, Managing Director of Persona submitted an update report on the performance of Persona. Persona Care and Support Limited was established 1 October 2015. The services which comprise Persona had previously been in-house services of the Council. In order to improve the sustainability of these services for the future the decision was taken to separate them off into a Local Authority Trading Company. This is a company which operates independently but is wholly owned by Bury Council. Persona provides a range of adult social care services to people who are vulnerable due to age or disability which were outlined in the report.


The report set out details of what was working well within the service along with a section relating to areas for improvement, with details of associated actions that have been put in place.


During discussion of this item, Councillor Lucy Smith referred to the workforce terms of the organisation. Kat Sowden explained that the majority of staff were paid the living wage and that the organisation still adopts the Council pay scales.


Members of the Committee raised issues concerning the loss of day service users as a result of costs. Kat Sowden undertook to provide details of the number of service users that had been lost following the introduction of charges.






       It was agreed:


      That a report be submitted to a future meeting setting out the implications of the Care Act and how Persona look to provide affordable and accessible day service provision.





Lesley Jones, Director of Public Health and Rachel Davies, Public Health Lead will report at the meeting.  Report with Appendices attached.


Additional documents:


Lesley Jones, Director of Public Health, submitted a report providing an overview of the development and achievements of the Health Visiting service since the commissioning became the responsibility of Public Health in October 2015.


Health Visiting is the only Universal service for children under school age commissioned in Bury.  As such, the service is a key contributor to identifying barriers to good child development and a child being school ready, delivering and referring to appropriate interventions and crucial to ensuring no child slips through the net.


The report set out Bury’s core offer highlighted issues that are working well along with areas for improvement, with particular reference to the issue of reducing budgets.


It was reported that the service have been a key contributor to the improvement of a good level of development in Bury and improving the health and wellbeing of babies, preschool children and families in the Borough and continues to work in partnership with the Council as commissioners and more crucially the Starting Well Partnership Board to deliver national, regional and local priorities.


The Chair, Councillor Stella Smith, commented on the limited budget and the fact that Bury only had 3 health Visitors in the Borough. Members acknowledged the valuable contribution of the service to wider outcomes for early years provision.


              It was agreed:


       That the update be noted.




Julie Gonda - Interim Executive Director – Communities & Wellbeing, will report at the meeting.  Report attached.


Julie Gonda, Interim Executive Director – Communities and Wellbeing, submitted a report providing members of Health Scrutiny Committee with details of information relating to complaints and compliments received by the department on Bury Adult Care Services. The report related to the period 2018/19, and provided comparisons between the this period and previous years, as well as detailing the nature, scope and scale of some of the complaints received, along with any learning that had resulted.


It was reported that the total number of complaints received over the last year had increased to 74, a more than ten percent increase on the relatively static figure for the last two years.  While the report highlighted where there might be annual variations in satisfaction with services or teams, there was no overall explanation as to why this increase has happened, other than increased customer demands and expectations placing pressures on services already adversely affected by reductions in funding.


Councillor Simpson, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing confirmed that the Council will continue to seek to learn from complaints, concerns and compliments raised with them and referred to new ways of working with the formation of Integrated Neighbourhood Teams and other relations with colleagues from the Clinical Commissioning Group.


During discussion of this item, Members of the Committee highlighted the omission of figures from Persona. Kat Sowden, Managing Director of Persona, explained that a complaints report had yet to be submitted to the Board and plans were in place for consideration at November’s Board meeting.


It was agreed:


That a complaints report from Persona be submitted to the January 2020 meeting of this Committee.




Any other business which by reason of special circumstances the Chair agrees may be considered as a matter of urgency.


Councillor Walmsley informed the Committee of a recent CCG Board meeting regarding budget cuts which had raised the issue of Walk in Centres. Councillor Simpson explained that a review of all urgent care provision was to be undertaken with no decisions having been made at this stage. Members of the Committee expressed their view that any review needed to engage fully from the start with the Council’s Health Scrutiny Committee.


               It was agreed:


               That representatives from the CCG be invited to the next meeting of this Committee to report on the issue of Urgent Care.


               (Note: This item, which did not appear on the agenda for the meeting, was allowed by the Chair to be considered as a matter of urgency, to enable the Committee to be involved in any review at the earliest opportunity).