The Board received a presentation from Michael Laing, Director of Integrated Community Services outlining how health and social care integration was progressing locally (for copy see file of Minutes).
The presentation highlighted:
· Background to the Integration and the White Paper
· Main White Paper proposals
· What does this mean in County Durham
· Activity in County Durham
· Revised County Durham Care Partnership
· Integration Programme
· Next steps
o Continue to engage with the ICS and the Department of Health and Social Care
o Get the new County Durham Care Partnership structures up and running and refine based on feedback and changing guidance
o Start the Integration Programme work-streams with agreed timescales for delivery
o Keep partners engaged and support each other during a period of change
o Continue to deliver services to 530,000 people in County Durham
Councillor T Henderson asked how would the Integrated Care System take account of patients and young people’s views for improved health and care system. Michael Laing explained that this was yet to be determined as a forum had been set up to gather the views of children and young people. In addition, the ICS engagement plan was also to be determined and how we really understood the young people’s experiences, emotional and mental health needs.
Nicola Bailey, Chief Officer NHS County Durham Clinical Commissioning Group, added that the guidance of the ICS design framework could be circulated which showed the engagement and involvement of the service users. They were involved in all aspects of decision making and they would continue to be part of the delivery and improvements with a focus on County Durham. She further added that the board of the ICS would hear the voices of children and young people as they were an important part of the process.
Councillor R Bell believed the system already worked well but that the design framework for the ICS required sharing and listening to people’s views. He said that it was important to consult on the proposed changes and to listen to those views expressed.
Nicola Bailey added that it was clear that there had to be an agreement on the design framework but that there were still a lot of areas that could collectively be influenced.
Jane Robinson said that the LA7 Chief Executives had met with Alan Foster and also wrote to him expressing their concerns. She assured the board that this would remain part of their agenda going forward.
Dr Findlay understood the fear people might have regarding the changes however he explained that the two Clinical Commissioning groups had merged and worked well together. With regards to funding being potentially lost through the ICS he said that we should be asking what we could do to help in terms of the integration.
From a children and young people perspective, John Pearce said that this risk was now being addressed in the design framework and that we needed to ensure their voices continued to be heard. He believed that excellent progress had been made but looking forward there were significant challenges for young people following the pandemic which could have underlying problems for them.
Amanda Healy, Director of Public Health said that there was an opportunity to build upon the progress already made through LA7 and at a North East level but to be delivered at place level.
That the presentation be noted.