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Agenda and minutes

Contact: Perminder Purewal, Democratic Services Officer  020 8496 4537 | Email: perminder.purewal@walthamforest.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTE MEMBERS

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Councillor Shameen Highfield.

 

The following substitute member arrangement was in place:

Councillor Karen Bellamy for Councillor Shameen Highfield.

2.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Members are required to declare any pecuniary or non-pecuniary interest they or their spouse/partner may have in any matter that is to be considered at this meeting.  Interests are defined in the front cover of this agenda.

Minutes:

Councillor Richard Sweden declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5 (Waltham Forest’s New Mental Wellbeing Strategy) as he is managed but not employed by NELFT and is a Trustee of the Leyton Orient Trust.

 

Notwithstanding his interest in this item Councillor Sweden was able to remain in the room and participate in the debate.

3.

MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING pdf icon PDF 84 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 14 September 2017.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 14 September 2017 were approved and signed by the Chair as a correct record.

 

Matters Arising

 

Dolphins Swimming Club

James Holden was asked to provide the Committee with an update on the position concerning the availability of swimming facilities for members of the Dolphins Swimming Club at Leytonstone Leisure Centre.  

 

STP Single Accountable Officer

The Committee noted that notwithstanding its concerns about the changes proposed in the East London Health and Care Partnership, the Chair of the Waltham Forest CCG has announced the appointment of Jane Milligan as the single Accountable Officer for all seven CCGs in North East London.

 

4.

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

Members of the public are welcome to participate in scrutiny meetings.  You may speak for three minutes on a topic related to the Committee’s work, and fifteen minutes in total is allowed for public speaking, at the discretion of the Chair.  If you would like to speak, please contact Democratic Services (details above) by 12 noon on the day before the meeting.

 

 

Minutes:

Peter Stanley, speaking on behalf of the Save Our Spines Action Group, addressed the Committee on his concerns about the decision of Barts NHS Health Trust to close the hydrotherapy pool at Whipps Cross Hospital following an equipment break down in June this year and to offer his Group members the alternative use of the hydrotherapy pool at Mile End Hospital on a trial basis.

 

Mr Stanley said the pool at Mile End had only very recently been made available for two hours on Wednesday evenings and there were other restrictions which limited usage. There was also no gym available for exercises unlike the facility at Whipps Cross. Of particular concern to the Group was the distance its members would have to travel to use the Mile End Pool, the non-availability of escalators or lifts at the nearby underground stations; the absence of direct bus links to the hospital and limited parking space which together would mean that some people who have been referred as patients from Whipps Cross would no longer be able to receive the benefits of hydrotherapy. Mr. Stanley also spoke of the financial benefits which would accrue from retaining a hydrotherapy pool in Waltham Forest.

 

Mr. Stanley was particularly concerned about the lack of consultation by Barts Health NHS Trust over the closure of the Whipps Cross Pool and about the revised arrangements which had been put in place and highlighted the fact that members of the Group had been without hydrotherapy for five months.

 

Alan Gurney (Managing Director, Whipps Cross Hospital) accepted that there had not been adequate consultation or effective communication about the closure of the Whipps Cross Pool with users of the pool. He pointed out that the Whipps Cross Pool currently costs the hospital £20,000 per year in maintenance fees and that the repair cost to the damaged pump would be £3,000. The small number of patients that were previously using the pool under the NHS had been referred to the Mile End Pool which is part of Barts Health estate.

       

He pointed out that the Trust was currently exploring other options for the use of a hydrotherapy pool in the borough for those users displaced at Whipps Cross including the possible use of the hydrotherapy pool at Whitefield School.

 

The Committee proceeded to discuss several ideas put forward by Members for the retention of a hydrotherapy pool facility in the borough and made the following decisions:

 

Decision

 

The Committee agreed to :-

 

(a)  ask Barts Health NHS Trust to:

 

(i)            report back on the alternative options it is exploring for the provision

     of a hydrotherapy pool in Waltham Forest in the event that the pool at

     Whipps Cross remains closed including the possible use of the pool at

     Whitefield School;

 

(ii)          review the access times for members of the Save Our Spines

           Action Group to use the hydrotherapy pool at Mile End Hospital

           pending final decisions on the use of the hydrotherapy pool at Whipps

           Cross;

 

(iii)          give an assurance that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

WALTHAM FOREST'S NEW MENTAL HEALTH WELLBEING STRATEGY pdf icon PDF 469 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Russell Carter (Public Health Consultant) presented a progress report on the development of a new mental wellbeing strategy for Waltham Forest in line with the Health and Wellbeing Board’s decision to select mental health and wellbeing as a priority work area over the next two years.

 

The report summarised the steps taken to date and the actions proposed to deliver the strategy objectives which are set out below:

 

  • Improve awareness of mental health issues among the general population to reduce stigma and discrimination.
  • Develop understanding across all sectors in the borough of the wider determinants of mental health and wellbeing and identify opportunities for work to reduce risk factors for poor mental health.
  • Propose new approaches to promoting mental wellbeing in the population including the 5 ways to wellbeing and the promotion of good sleep patterns.
  • Identify opportunities and actions for early intervention in those who are struggling with their mental wellbeing in order to prevent future mental ill-health.
  • Propose a standardised set of measures and tools for measuring mental wellbeing and evaluating the impact of services and projects across the borough.

 The Committee discussed the report and asked several questions.

 

Councillor Sheree Rackham was interested to know what action was being taken to engage with mothers to an endeavour to increase breastfeeding rates given the physical and mental health benefits of breastfeeding. She also wanted more information about the reasons why Hounslow topped the table for Life Satisfaction in London in 2016/17.

 

Joe McDonnell said the point about breastfeeding would be covered in the themed review report on post-natal services. The officers agreed to look into the issue concerning the Life Satisfaction Survey and said more information was likely to be included in the new strategy. The Committee was particularly interested to know how Waltham Forest compared with other boroughs in terms of life satisfaction for young people given that positive satisfaction with life among 15 year olds in Waltham Forest was reported to be significantly lower than the national average - 56.9% compared with 63.8%.    

                                                                              

Councillor Richard Sweden raised a number of points. He wanted to know more about:

 

·          collaborative working in the borough on mental health services;

·          the steps being taken to engage with “hard to reach” communities on the availability of mental health services;

·          the signposting of mental health services;

·          the work with Waltham Forest Talking Therapies to provide support for people with mental health risks; and

·          the availability on-line support for people with mental health needs.

 

In response Russell Carter drew attention to the Time to Change Campaign being organised locally to end the stigma and discrimination associated with mental health and to encourage people with mental health problems to seek help from appropriate health professionals. He highlighted the importance of early intervention to prevent mental health problems and drew attention to the Mental Health First Aid Training being provided throughout the borough in schools and in the voluntary sector etc. to spot the early signs of mental health problems and signpost accordingly. He  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

WHIPPS CROSS HOSPITAL PERFORMANCE UPDATE ON THE IMPROVEMENT PLAN pdf icon PDF 46 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a copy of the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) latest report on Whipps Cross Hospital published on 12 September 2017 following their unannounced re-inspection of the hospital on 10 and 11 May 2017 when they inspected the three core services of surgery, end of life care and outpatients and diagnostic imaging.

 

The Committee also received a report from Barts NHS Hospital Trust on the improvements it has made.

 

The Committee noted that the CQC has now given the hospital an overall rating of “requires improvement”. The CQC found improvements had been made in both end of life care and diagnostic imaging which reflected the improved ratings given for these services but saw limited evidence of improvements in surgery from its last inspection and its rating of “inadequate” accordingly remained unchanged. In relation to surgery the CQC was concerned that the hospital’s clinical governance structures were still not sufficiently robust and some clinical parameters were below target.     

 

Alan Gurney (Managing Director) and Zebina Ratansi (Director of Nursing and Governance) from Whipps Cross Hospital attended the meeting and gave further details of the action taken by the Trust to address the concerns raised in the CQC’s inspections and responded to Members’ questions on a range of issues arising from their discussion of the inspection report.

 

The Committee particularly noted the improvements made in staffing levels and staff retention rates at the hospital, notwithstanding the national shortage of nursing staff, and the steps taken by the Trust to recruit staff through social media advertising and overseas recruitment campaigns. The hospital now has a new Recruitment Manager and has set itself a target of 95% staff in post by September 2018. Of particular interest was the work being done with Whitefield School to recruit apprentices.  

 

Arising from questioning Zebina Ratansi drew the Committee’s attention to changes which had made in the Trust’s organisational culture and HR processes arising from previous concerns about staff relations including bullying and advised that the provision of more staff supervision, training and support had resulted in better staff communications with managers; a more settled workforce; and improved staff morale. This included the availability of confidential drop in sessions for staff to raise issues of concern and for behavioural issues to be addressed.

 

The Committee sought an update on the Trust’s plans to modernise the hospital and redevelop the Whipps Cross site as a first class facility. Whilst Alan Gurney reminded the Committee of the capital investment which has been made at the hospital over the past two years which included building two new operating theatres, a new high dependency unit and a new breast screening service, he emphasised that much of the hospital site is not fit for purpose and there is a high maintenance backlog. He updated the Committee on the progress the Trust is making in developing its Strategic Outline Business Case for the redevelopment of the site for submission to NHS England and in response to a question made it clear that whilst the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

ANNUAL REPORT FOR THE WALTHAM FOREST CHILDREN'S DEATH OVERVIEW PANEL pdf icon PDF 79 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Public Health presented the ninth annual report of the Waltham Forest Child Death Overview Panel covering the period 1st April 2016 to 31st March 2017. 

 

The Committee was advised that there were 21 deaths of children in 2016/17 the majority of which were under the age of 1. 52% of these children were less than 28 days old. In one third of the cases the parents were consanguineous. No particular trend was identified with regard to sex, ethnicity or locality of residence. 

 

During the same period 27 deaths were reviewed 16 of which took place during 2016/17. The most common categorisation of death was death during pregnancy or delivery (33%) followed by malignancy, chromosomal, genetic and congenital anomalies. Of the reviewed cases consanguinity was considered to have contributed to death in 6 cases (22%).

 

The number of child death notifications in Waltham Forest has reduced by half since monitoring began in 2008.

 

Decision

   

The Committee:

 

(a)  noted the report and the on-going recommendations previously made by the Child Death Overview Panel as set out in the report; and

 

(b)  asked the Director of Public Health to provide up to date statistical information on the number of still births in the borough.   

8.

STATISTICS FOR AMBULANCES QUEUING AT HOSPITAL A&E DEPARTMENTS IN EXCESS OF THE 15 MINUTE HANDOVER TIME pdf icon PDF 50 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report setting out statistical information on the number of hours spent by ambulances queueing at A&E Departments in excess of the agreed 15 minute handover time.

 

The statistics showed that the three A&E Departments that serve Waltham Forest residents had significant variations in performance as set out below:

 

North Middlesex - 66% over 15 minutes – average overrun - 9.4 minutes

Whipps Cross – 70.7% over 15 minutes – average overrun - 12.7 minutes

Homerton – 30.8% over 15 minutes – average overrun -3.7 minutes 

 

Decision 

 

The Committee:

 

(a)   noted the report; and

 

(b)   agreed to ask Barts NHS Health Trust for a report on the action it is taking to improve ambulance waiting times at Whipps Cross Hospital.  

9.

THEMED REVIEW INTO PRE AND POST-NATAL SERVICES: CHILDREN AND FAMILIES CENTRES pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In pursuance of its decision to choose the provision of pre and post-natal care services for mothers in Waltham Forest as its chosen topic for this year’s themed review the Committee received an update report on the Waltham Forest Integrated Early Years Model launched in the Autumn of 2016 to look at how Children and Family Centres working alongside specialist health services can improve the health, wellbeing and development of children aged 0-5 and their families.

 

The report set out the progress made to date in achieving the each of the aims and expected outcomes set out in the Model to give children the best start in life and transform the support available for parents and young children from pregnancy to starting school.

 

The Committee welcomed the improvements that have been made in the first year of the three year programme particularly in relation to the children and family centre and health visiting services and in response to questioning received further information from Daniel Phelps and Joe McDonnell on the particular areas of interest they wished the themed review to focus upon.

 

These were:

 

·         Child Poverty - How to identify low-income families and vulnerable people who may need additional support to ensure they access appropriate services.

 

·         Outreach Work - Need to reach (a) families that do not wish to access services and are being harmed by problems that are diagnosable; and (b) families that wish to access services but are unable to do so.

 

·         Obesity - How to reach groups where obesity is an issue.

 

·         Maternal Mental Health - How to identify people with maternal mental health difficulties and to encourage them to access services.

How to tackle stigma and cultural differences.

Better and earlier identification of perinatal depression given the impact on parents’ ability to bond with their babies.

 

·         Mental Health Services – Need to assess whether services are being rationed.

 

·         1 Year and 2/2.5 Year Child Health Reviews – Performance on the number of children receiving first year health checks slow and needs to be addressed. Despite the 25% increase in the number of 2/2.5 year reviews in the past eighteen months more needs to be done given that 200 mothers are still not being seen.

 

·         Take Up of Free Nursery places – This is one of the Council’s key priorities in supporting families and a London-wide issue that needs to be addressed.

 

·         On-Line Information and Advice Services for New Parents – Information required on current provision especially out-of-hours service.

 

·         Fathers and Co-Parents – Need to ensure that fathers and co-parents are encouraged and welcomed to play a full part in children’s services.  

 

Decision          

 

The Committee:

 

(a)  noted the report and welcomed the progress made in implementing the Early Years Model;

 

(b)  asked the officers to take on board the issues outlined above in scoping the themed review; and

 

(c)  asked that arrangements be made for Members of the Committee to visit the Lloyd Park Children’s Centre and Neighbourhood Midwives Project to see for themselves the services being  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

HEALTH SCRUTINY COMMITTEE - ACTION LOG pdf icon PDF 36 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee noted its Action Log and the updates provided on issues outstanding from previous meetings.

11.

JAMES HOLDEN - POLICY AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER

Minutes:

The Committee was informed that this was the last meeting being attended by James Holden prior to him taking up an appointment with the County Councils Network.

 

The Committee thanked Mr. Holden for the valuable contribution he had made to the work of the Committee over the past three years and wished him well in his future career. 

 

 

 

The meeting ended at 9.55pm