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Declarations of Interest
To receive declarations of personal and prejudicial interest (if any) from Members/Officers in accordance with the provisions of the Members Code of Conduct adopted by Council from 1 September 2008 (including whipping declarations)
To receive for approval the minutes of a meeting of the Subject Overview and Scrutiny Committee 2 of the 29/11/2018
RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting of the Subject Overview and Scrutiny Committee 2 of 29 November 2018 be approved as a true and accurate record.
Councillor Phil White - Cabinet Member Social Services and Early Help
Susan Cooper - Corporate Director Social Services and Wellbeing
Jaqueline Davies - Head of Adult Social Care
Pete Tyson - Group Manager Commissioning Contracts
Arron Norman – Finance Manager Social Services & Wellbeing
The Group Manager Commissioning Contracts presented a report providing the Overview and Scrutiny Committee with an update on recent developments made and the proposed future developments in respect of Bridgend County Borough Council’s Direct Payment Scheme. He added that this report also assisted BCBC in meeting its duties under the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.
The Group Manager Commissioning Contracts explained the background to direct payments and the requirements placed on local authorities that related to direct payments. He explained that within BCBC the total number of people receiving a direct payment had more than doubled since 2012 to 322 in 2019. It was recognised that the service continued to be primarily focused on Learning Disabilities, Disabled Children and Physical Disabilities.
The Group Manager Commissioning Contracts reported that in order to increase and widen the scope for direct payments BCBC commissioned the Institute of Public Care to undertake a review of the direct payments scheme and to develop a strategy and action plan moving forward. Engagement and consultation was carried out including a written survey posted to all service users. Feedback was used to inform the development of a strategy and action plan for direct payments which centred on ten key areas to be taken forward and implemented over the next 3 years. He outlined the aims and objectives and explained that alongside the review, the directorate had also considered and reviewed the rates paid for direct payments. It was proposed to consolidate and simplify this into one amount and uplift the rate payable to direct payment recipients who choose to employ personal assistants to provide their support to £12/hr. He added that the direct payment support service contract ended on 4th July 2019 and officers were in the process of reviewing and recommissioning the service which would be carried out in accordance with relevant contractual and procedural requirements.
The Group Manager Commissioning Contracts outlined the cost implications of implementing the revised direct payment PA rate estimated to be in the region of £106k per annum. Provision had been made within the budget for 2019/20.
A member asked for an example of an innovative claim and information on the appeals process if a claim was refused. The Corporate Director Social Services and Wellbeing explained that the way an assessment was made had changed and the process was now more outcome focussed. The process was based on what was important to the individual and a financial amount was provided for that individual to purchase their own support rather that an allocation of care hours. The Corporate Director of Social Services and Wellbeing gave an innovative example of where a service user was able to purchase a season ticket and pay for a Personal Assistant to accompany him to watch football once a fortnight and this was of greater personal benefit than 5 days a week at a day service. An individual could also purchase services from the local authority such as use of a hydrotherapy pool or support ... view the full minutes text for item 67.
The Scrutiny Officer informed members that the next item to be considered by the committee at the 27 March 2019 meeting would be CAMHS. A report request had already been sent but she asked members to let her know if they wanted to request any other information.
The Scrutiny Officer reported that there would be a forward work programme workshop in April which would provide an opportunity for members to share their views.
Members requested that quarterly updates on Direct Payments be added to the work programme.
RESOLVED: The Committee:
(i) Approved the feedback from the previous meetings of the Subject Overview and Scrutiny Committee 2 and noted the list of responses including any still outstanding at Appendix A to the report.
(ii) Identified any additional information the Committee wished to receive on the next item delegated to them by the Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee and any other item in the overall FWP shown in Appendix B
(iii)Identified any additional items using the criteria form, for consideration on the Scrutiny Forward Work Programme.
To consider any item(s) of business in respect of which notice has been given in
accordance with Part 4 (paragraph 4) of the Council Procedure Rules and which the person presiding at the meeting is of the opinion should by reason of special circumstances be transacted at the meeting as a matter of urgency.
There were no urgent items.
The meeting closed at 11:15 am.