Agenda and minutes

Venue: Conference Room 1 - Herefordshire Council, Plough Lane Offices, Hereford, HR4 0LE. View directions

Contact: Ben Baugh, Democratic Services Officer 

Link: Watch this meeting on the Herefordshire Council YouTube channel


No. Item


Apologies for absence

To receive apologies for absence.



All committee members were present.  Apologies had been received from Councillor Carole Gandy (Cabinet Member Adults, Health and Wellbeing) and Christine Price (Chief Officer, Healthwatch Herefordshire).


Named substitutes

To receive details of any councillors nominated to attend the meeting in place of a member of the committee.


Councillor Ivan Powell (Cabinet Member Children and Young People) was in attendance to represent the executive.


Declarations of interest

To receive declarations of interest in respect of items on the agenda.


No declarations of interest were made.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 143 KB

To receive the minutes of the meeting held on Monday 11 September 2023.


The minutes of the previous meeting were received.




That the minutes of the meeting held on 11 September 2023 be confirmed as a correct record and be signed by the Chairperson.


Questions from members of the public

To receive any written questions from members of the public.


No questions had been received from members of the public.


Questions from members of the council

To receive any written questions from members of the council.


No questions had been received from councillors.


Home Care pdf icon PDF 128 KB

To provide the Health, Care and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee with an overview of home care services in Herefordshire, both services commissioned by the council and the wider market. The report also outlines plans to support hospital discharge arrangements over the winter and provides information on the council’s Shared Lives services.

Additional documents:


The committee considered a report on home care services, discharge arrangements during the winter, and Shared Lives services.  A presentation was given and the slide pack was published to the webpage for the committee following the meeting (link to the presentation).


The slides presented by officers from the Community Wellbeing Directorate are identified below, along with a summary of the principal points of discussion.


Home Care


A            The Interim Head of Care Commissioning presented the Home Care slides:- Legislative Framework; Key Facts; Commissioning History / Arrangements (1); Home Care Framework Providers – Areas; Commissioning History / Arrangements (2); Current Provider Landscape; Overview of Quality of Provision; Legacy Provision; Apr 2021 Estimated Demand to Sep 2023 Delivery; Commissioned Home Care Customers and Weekly Hours; Weekly Cost of Commissioned Home Care; Community Waiting List for Home Care; Challenges; Response to Challenges; Future Plans and Next Steps.


a.1.          It was noted that, unlike the Primary Framework, the Secondary Framework was not based on specific geographical areas.


a.2.          It was reported that demand had been lower than anticipated (the estimate for April 2021 was 710 people but the actual numbers were 559 in April 2021 and 593 in September 2023) but the total hours were similar (the estimate was 9000 hours but the actual hours were 8282 and 8882, respectively), reflecting the appropriate management of pathways but also increasing levels of acuity.


a.3.          The Chairperson noted the improvements that had been made in recent years and thanked the officers for their hard work.


a.4.          An overview was provided of the work of the Commissioning Support Unit (including brokerage, quality and review, and contract support) and the activities undertaken as part of the quality assurance process.


a.5.          It was noted that the Care Quality Commission (CQC) undertook inspections of providers periodically and there could be changes in the intervening period.  In terms of the one provider commissioned by the council currently rated as ‘requires improvement’, it was reported that the council was working closely with the provider to monitor and support improvements, and intelligence was shared with the CQC to inform the risk profile. 


a.6.          The committee was advised about the due diligence process undertaken for potential new providers prior to appointment to a framework.


a.7.          It was reported that care providers had to apply for a licence to recruit social care workers from overseas, intelligence on practices was shared via regional networks, and sanctions could be taken against providers if they were in breach of licence conditions.


a.8.          The committee was advised that, at the point of commissioning, an equality impact assessment was undertaken to ensure that diverse characteristics and emerging needs were considered in formulating the specification for the service.


a.9.          It was reported that there were regular fora with providers, there was a complaints process for individual clients, and an external process for obtaining feedback was being introduced.  The Vice-Chairperson commented on value of previous scrutiny activity involving providers.


a.10.      The council was working with providers to identify clients that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 16.



Work programme 2023/24 pdf icon PDF 122 KB

To consider the draft work programme for the Health, Care and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee for the municipal year 2023/24.

Additional documents:


The committee considered the work programme for the remainder of the municipal year 2023/24, noting additions made to the long list identified under the previous agenda item.


In response to a suggestion about a future item on mental health provision, the Statutory Scrutiny Officer advised the committee that further exploration of discrete topics would be beneficial.


With attention drawn to the item on ‘West Mercia Police “Most Appropriate Agency” Policy’, scheduled for 20 May 2024, the Cabinet Member Children and Young People noted that this topic was being discussed widely at a national level and offered help to inform the item.




That, subject to the agreed additions to the long list, the work programme 2023/24 be approved.



Date of the next meeting

The next scheduled meeting is Monday 29 January 2024 2.00 pm.


The date of the next scheduled meeting was identified as Monday 29 January 2024 2.00 pm.