To receive an update on the progress of Community Hubs. (30 mins)
The Committee received a presentation from Rhian Warner, Better Care Fund Project Manager, Wokingham Community Health and Social Care about Community Hubs.
Rhian went through the slides and explained that the Community Health and Social Care programme (CHSC) was a complex proposal which aimed: ‘to keep the residents of Wokingham fit, well and living as independently as they can be in their own homes for as long as possible by working as a single health and social care system that supports people, promotes self-care and prevention and ultimately makes the most effective use of resources in the system’.
Rhian explained that the proposal was that residents would initially contact their GP practice who would be able to identify which service was needed and direct them to the right professional. It was hoped this streamlined process would be clearer to residents as they would not need to contact different people to access the right service.
Rhian stated that there were a number of benefits to this system (which were listed in the presentation) and described the timeline for its implementation.
Regarding community engagement, Rhian stated that there were now eight active Community Navigator volunteers, four trained and ready to go and four at enquire stage. The scheme had been launched on 1 March 2016 at three GP surgeries: Wargrave, Wokingham and Swallowfield. Twyford, Brookside and Parkside started on 16 October 2016.
Rhian stated that the Community Navigator strategy across health and social care was to increase knowledge and referrals. The plan was to have a network of 30 volunteers across the Borough. Rhian pointed out that as with most business enterprises, it was expected that it would take three years for the project to be fully embedded. Rhian stated that Involve has been complimentary about the Navigator services as they helped to reduce the workload.
The following comments were made:
· Councillor Smith noted that the graph containing the CHSC finances did not project inflation increases for the line relating to ‘on-going costs for running operations’ and asked for a clarification. Katie Summers stated that the budget for the project was £3m, she would take this observation back to the finance team for further analysis;
· In relation to the CHSC finance graph, Councillor Smith drew attention to the line about ‘GP appointments avoidance’ and asked why there was no variation. Dr Zylstra explained that GPs were under a type of contract that was not tied to the number of patients the saw in a day, they were paid a fixed amount independently of their volume of work;
· Members suggested that the line about GP appointments avoided be taken out of the graph;
· Councillor Dolinski expressed frustration that he had received information about this project from different sources and every time it was a slightly different picture was presented. It was not clear to him who was leading the project;
· Dr Zylstra clarified that Wokingham Integration Strategic Partnership (WISP) was the organisation which was accountable for this project. Katie Summers confirmed that Involve was also engaged in the project;
· Councillor Dolinski expressed concern that the proposal would not be able to effectively link different care agencies and share information when two different patients were in need of intervention. Katie Summers suggested that Councillor Dolinski’s example be used to test the model;
· In response to a question, Rhian stated that health professionals would be to communicate better and have access to patients history records;
· In response to a question Rhian stated that there was a ‘ladder of change’ in place to measure success in the form of specific changes in people’s lives.
REOLVED That: The report and the presentation be noted.