Members received an overview of progress on
the areas of work within the terms of reference of this Committee
and covered by the Portfolio Holder for Adults’ Services,
Councillor Brake, as set out below:
Adults' Mental Health and Disability Services
(including Learning and Physical Disabilities)
Adults' Partnership Commissioning (25+) and Better
Health and Health Partnerships
Independent Safeguarding and Review
Public Health - Lead Member,
including Health and Wellbeing Boards.
Councillor Brake responded to Members’
questions and comments as follows:
safeguarding concerns – in response to
a query whether Councillor Brake was concerned by the increase in
this area, the Portfolio Holder commented that people felt more
comfortable raising concerns now and the Council was a victim of
its own success.
discharges – regarding
whether the current situation in the NHS was impacting on discharge
pathways, Councillor Brake replied that in normal circumstances
when someone was ready to be discharged there was a plan for this.
The Council would do its utmost to support the hospital but not at
the expense of patient safety and, as far as he was aware, the
situation in the NHS was not impacting on the Council. The
Assistant Director – Adult Social Care added that the
situation was challenging and the Council was working very closely
with the hospital to minimise delays to discharges and by
discussing where patients can be discharged to.
Government funding for
extra care beds – in response to
a query about how many care homes in Medway would receive this
funding, the Portfolio Holder commented that he was aware that the
Government was supporting hospitals
with discharges into the community.
alliance – whether this
Alliance was receiving sufficient support was queried. The
Portfolio Holder responded that he shared the concerns around this.
The number of people with dementia was increasing but the
Council’s work on this would not cease.
Board – regarding
whether Medway would receive its fair share from the new Kent and
Medway Integrated Board, the Director of People commented she was
confident Medway would be treated fairly and was respected as a
partner but whether the area received the level of resources it
needed would remain to be seen.
Recruitment in the care
sector – in terms of
what the Council was doing to help its partners with recruitment in
this sector, the Portfolio Holder noted some staff had left the
sector following the pandemic, although some were starting to
return. The people who worked in care were very committed and saw
it as a vocation. The Council wanted to work with partners to make
this a career. Using expensive agency staff was not the way
forward. In response, the point was made that low pay was a key
reason why people were leaving care and there was a need for a
complete review of the care industry.
Support to live at home
service - noting this service was being recommissioned,
whether there were any plans to develop a step-down service to help
people to recover in a supported environment was queried. The
Portfolio Holder commented that there were newer facilities in some
areas for people with longer term conditions. The Assistant
Director – Adult Social Care added that the Council was
looking at how funding could be used for step down
account - the content of this document was praised and a
suggestion was made that the work of the adult social care team
should be promoted on the Council’s social media platforms,
which the Portfolio Holder agreed with.
Adult mental health and
disability services – a point was made that
the number of people aged under 64 needing these services would
increase and an assurance was sought that this increase in demand
had been future proofed. The Portfolio Holder commented that Medway
was well placed as the Council was constantly reviewing services
and he was not aware of any concerns. The Assistant Director
– Adult Social Care added that the supported living service
had recently been re-procured. The service was in tiers to make sure people with complex needs got
the right support.
hubs – the Portfolio
Holder was asked to do more to highlight work done in community
hubs on mental health and wellbeing.
Role of Voluntary
Sector- the Portfolio Holder
was asked to promote the work of the voluntary sector on the
cost-of-living crisis. The Portfolio Holder acknowledged the work
of the sector and that the Council helped by providing respite care
for carers. The Council had also awarded grants to local food
inequalities – in response to
what was being done on this, the Portfolio Holder commented this
was constantly under review. The
Director of Public Health added that Medway performed the best in
the south East for NHS health checks and had
some of the lowest smoking rates. 80% of the impact on health
outcomes related to non-clinical determinants. He was aware of the
challenges and felt he had the resources to do more.
Support for people with
a learning disability – a comment was
made that 705 seemed a low number of people supported with a
long-term package of care with a primary support reason of Learning
Disability. The Assistant Director
– Adult Social Care clarified that the Council was required
to categorise people and the figure of 705 related to those people
who were supported because they had a primary support reason of
learning disability. The Assistant Director added she could not
be 100% confident everyone was captured and the Council was
looking at how everyone could be identified.
The Committee agreed to
thank the Portfolio Holder for his support and noted the