Thursday, 6 December 2012
The Your Thurrock unseen news items
Below are three news items submitted to Your Thurrock but not posted. They are here for your entertainment only.
Adult Social Care Performance
Thurrock Council was reported to be comparing reasonably against the national average on its performance in Adult Social Care in 2011-12, the Health & Well-Being Overview & Scrutiny Committee heard last night. Thurrock performed better on seven of the Key Performance Indicators on which the authority is judged whilst performing worse on five indicators.
Thurrock is said to be performing "good overall" on four important Corporate Balanced Scorecard indicators for Quarter 2 2012-13. Monitored monthly, the indicators provide a picture of the well-being of Thurrock including the number of permanent admissions to residential care per 100,000 population aged 18 or over.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is working with the council to monitor external providers of residential and domiciliary care. Only one provider has given cause for concern over issues with staff training and their ability to handle the current workload. The unnamed domiciliary care provider will be receiving no more new referrals until the quality of care improves.
Concerns were raised over the reports in the national media of ex-prisoners being encouraged to take up careers in social care but councillors were told by Roger Harris, Head of Commissioning, that council policy is that all workers in the sector must have an enhanced CRB check. There were no other issues regarding recruitment as far as Mr Harris was aware.
Thurrock Clinical Commissioning Group
A report on the Thurrock Clinical Commissioning Group, given to the Health & Well-Being Overview & Scrutiny Committee, showed good progress with 75% of the population of Thurrock now being covered by the group. Only ten GP practices are yet to join the clinical commissioning group, the members of which are due to take over the commissioning of health services as part of the Coalition Government's NHS reforms.
When quizzed on the possible use of sanctions against GPs who were reluctant to join the TCCG, Mandy Ansell, Chief Operating Officer for the group, insisted that there would be no sanctions against GPs as healthcare providers but they would be "forced" into joining eventually. Ms Ansell eased fears by remarking that patient care would not be adversely affected.
The NHS Commissioning Board will be undertaking a site visit to Thurrock on 20 December as part of the authorisation process by which time the group hope to have 100% coverage of the population.
South Essex Mental Health Strategy
Catherine Wilson, Service Manager Commissioning, unveiled the second draft of the South Essex Mental Health Strategy which has finally been completed after extensive dialogue with stakeholders. Ms Wilson stated that the strategy was now a clearer and more concise document that focuses on the steps for a redesign of the current mental health service provision across
The strategy introduces a five step approach to mental health intervention with more support being given to GPs and practice nurses to deliver initial services to people experiencing a range of mental health problems in primary care. A ‘gateway’ organisation will be added into the mental health care pathway, staffed by psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses and social workers, to allow for better crisis response and act as a form of triage. This new ‘gateway’ will offer assessment at a single point of access and will filter out the less urgent cases that would otherwise have been referred to more cost-heavy service provision that may not be required.
The intention of the strategy is to improve the current provision that has been described as “not as good as it should be” in
Thurrock. The strategy is also intended to be more cost efficient as the current provision is too focused on in-patient care than on care in the community and on crises and severe mental ill-health with little focus on prevention.
Cllr Healy, member of the Health & Well-Being Overview & Scrutiny Committee, was told that the ‘gateway’ organisation would provide information, support and signposting to alternative help for those who were rejected by the system when he quizzed Ms Wilson on that point.
The strategy document is due to go back out to consultation with stakeholders shortly.
Until next time…