Agenda and minutes

Adult Social Care Cabinet Committee - Tuesday, 29th September, 2020 10.00 am

Venue: Online

Contact: Emma West  03000 412421


No. Item


Apologies and Substitutes


No apologies for absence had been received.


Declarations of Interest by Members in items on the agenda


(1)        Mr Burden declared an interest in relation to item 6 on the agenda, as he was the Director of Age UK North West Kent.


(2)        Mrs Allen declared an interest in relation to item 6 on the agenda, as she was a member of Age UK North West Kent.



Minutes of the meeting held on 14 July 2020 pdf icon PDF 165 KB



Verbal Updates by Cabinet Member and Corporate Director pdf icon PDF 100 KB


(1)        Mrs Bell (Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health) gave a verbal update on the following issues:


a)    Adult Social Care (ASC) Covid-19 Winter Plan

The government had recently published its ASC Covid-19 Winter Plan to support care providers through the winter and limit the spread of the coronavirus. The plan set out the challenges facing ASC this winter and the key actions for the Department for Health and Social Care, the NHS, local authorities and for providers. It covered a number of themes, including supporting people who received social care, the workforce and carers, collaboration across health and care services and also the prevention and control of the spread of infection in care sectors, the plan covered the entire ASC sector. The government had committed £546m of additional funding to extend the infection control fund to March 2021 to help the care sector restrict the movement of staff between care homes and paying staff to self-isolate. Local authorities such as Kent County Council were required to put their own winter plans in place, building on existing planning, including the local outbreak control plan and confirm to the department that they had done this by 31st October 2020. Kent County Council continued to work closely with providers and representatives and recently held a roundtable meeting with the Kent Integrated Care Alliance, chaired by the Leader of the Council and winter planning was the main item on the agenda.


b)   Kent and Medway Medical School


The Kent and Medway Medical School had recently opened, and students were there. The Leader of the Council had appointed Mrs Bell to be the Kent County Council representative on the Medical School Partnership Board. The Board provided a mechanism to enable co-ordinated and effective partnership and relationship development between the school and Kent and Medway Health agencies. The board was made up of representatives of the Medical School, plus nominees from the CCG and all of the health trusts in the county, including clinicians and the public health directors of Kent and Medway. The Board had three strategic priorities, and these were innovation, encouraging wider participation and creating a sense of place and belonging.


(2)        Mr Smith (Corporate Director of Adult Social Care and Health) gave a verbal update on the following issues:


a)    Chris McKenzie - Director of Adult Social Care and Health North and West Kent


Mr Smith welcomed Chris McKenzie to the ASC Senior Leadership team. Mr McKenzie had been appointed as the Director of North and West Kent.


b)   Local Planning for Winter


Mr Smith expressed his thanks to Kent’s Finance and Commissioning colleagues who had successfully distributed up to £18.6m of the infection control grant over the last 6 months and said that there was a small surplus allocated to preparing for winter. In terms of the digital aspects, ASC were continuing to roll-out the tablet-based system which allowed individuals that were self-isolating or were not able to keep in touch with their loved ones to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 223.


20/00098 - Community Based Wellbeing Services Procurement Restart pdf icon PDF 321 KB

Additional documents:


Mr S Mitchell (Senior Commissioner) was in attendance for this item


(1)        Mr Mitchell introduced the report and said that the Covid-19 pandemic had delayed the procurement process for the Community Based Wellbeing Services contracts. The procurement process would restart in September 2020. A revised timetable would be required and as such, an extension to some grant and contract agreements into the 2021/2022 financial year.


a)    In response to a question, Mr Mitchell referred to the third phase of the procurement programme which would be a re-procurement of the Carers Short Breaks contract. He said that the third phase would start from the beginning of next year and in order for the work that needed to be undertaken to go through the procurement process, a significant amount of consultation work needed to be undertaken to grasp an understanding of what carers were seeking in terms of support.


b)    In response to a question which related to Age UK Canterbury, Mr Mitchell said that it would be part of the second phase of the procurement programme as the approval would seek grant arrangements to continue up until approximately October 2021. He added that he could not foresee who the future providers may or may not be at this stage of the process.


(2)        RESOLVED that the decision proposed to be taken by the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health to:


a)    extend all required grant arrangements to cover Phase 2 of procurement until 30 September 2021;


b)    extend existing grant agreements to Edenbridge Voluntary Transport Service, Sevenoaks Volunteer Transport Group, Hospice in the Weald and Heart of Kent Hospice, for the full duration of the procurement programme (to end March 2022);


c)    extend the Carers Short Breaks contract, to Crossroads Care Kent, until 31 March 2022; and


d)    delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Adult Social Care and Health to take other relevant actions, including but not limited to entering into and finalising the terms of relevant contracts or other legal agreements, as necessary to implement the decision,


be endorsed.


Mr Burden abstained from the recommendation and asked that this be recorded in the minutes.



Adult Social Care Performance and COVID-19 pdf icon PDF 248 KB


Mr M Chatfield (Operations Analytics and Systems Manager) was in attendance for this item


(1)        Mr Chatfield introduced the report which provided an oversight of Adult Social Care activity during and since the Covid-19 pandemic.


Officers then responded to a number of comments and questions from Members, including the following: -


a)    Mr Smith referred to the winter plan and the issues of self-isolation in care homes and individuals not being able to be discharged out of hospital and said that one of the requirements within the winter plan was for the local authority, Public Health colleagues and the NHS to work with the CQC to put arrangements in place locally to ensure that people who were discharged out of hospital with a positive test for Covid-19 could be kept safe and in an appropriate environment. He added that Kent County Council continued to support the sector and reassured the Committee that each care home had an Infection Control nurse and a robust plan that was reported through the cell.


b)    Mr Smith referred to the issue of ongoing financial support for the sector and said that the topic would be focused on heavily over coming months as the Covid-19 situation continued to evolve. In relation to the additional pressures throughout the winter, Kent County Council would continue to work closely with the NHS and CCGs. He added that the ASC budget at present was sufficient to meet current demand, any additional demand would need to be supported and financed through the winter monies and through working with health colleagues.


c)    Mr Smith reminded Committee Members that they should contact Mr Scott-Clark (Director of Public Health) or himself if they had concerns which related to specific care homes.


d)    Mr Chatfield stated that he would provide further information to Committee Members outside of the meeting in relation to the number of clients that had left residential care.


e)    Mr Smith stated that the winter plan from government had been published on 26th September 2020. He added that he would circulate the relevant link to the plan to Committee Members outside of the meeting.


f)     Mr Smith said that the Council’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic was a long-term response and the winter plan covered up until March 2021. There was provision within the infection control element of the plan for care homes not to have staff travelling between different places and that they could be paid whilst they were isolating. As well as promoting the use of technology, the Council were continuing to work with providers through Kent Integrated Care Alliance (KICA) and trade associations to ensure that they had all that they need in these unprecedented times. The winter plan also provided Mr Scott-Clark with the ability to restrict care home visits if necessary. Visitation restrictions within care homes would only ever be necessary following a dynamic risk assessment and in the best interests and needs of people within the care homes.


g)    Mr Chatfield referred  ...  view the full minutes text for item 225.


Adult Social Care Diagnostic and Roadmap pdf icon PDF 348 KB


(1)        Mr McKenzie and Ms Duff introduced the presentation slides which set out information relating to the Covid-19 pandemic, the significant pressures and challenges for ASC both nationally and locally, the three pillars within ASC outlining the overarching areas of focus for development and the basis for ASC’s diagnostic approach and the projects that had been planned.


(2)        Mrs Bell (Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health) emphasised the significance of the project and said that it affected the whole directorate in every aspect of work that the service undertook. She added that Mr Smith had wealth of experience of working within ASC in other authorities and had been able to draw upon what he had experienced and bring it to Kent to provide a more modern, innovative, data-focused service, not only for the staff but for Kent’s residents and clients. She stated that the diagnostic would be submitted to future meetings of the Committee as it progressed through the different stages of implementation.


Officers then responded to a number of comments and questions from Members, including the following: -


a)    Mr McKenzie referred to the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic had had on ASC services and said that whilst the number of Covid-19 cases had reduced over the summer nationally, a second spike was likely. He said that ASC were actively preparing for a second spike of Covid-19 by working closely with the health service, the voluntary and community sector, district councils and communities.


b)    Ms Duff reiterated the comments that Mr McKenzie had made in relation to the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic had had on ASC services and said that the Council had worked very closely with the district and borough councils and communities to set up community networks to support people locally. She said that the whole communication experience had changed significantly for users and that many of the barriers that had been present before had been removed. She added that the community focus had significantly strengthened support to the public and information sharing.


c)    In terms of staffing, Ms Duff said that there were a number of staff within ASC that continued to work remotely but had also taken the opportunity to explore all ways of communicating with partner organisations and clients. ASC’s front door service and area referral management teams had moved back into the office because it was important for them to be able to draw upon the support for themselves and access professional support. Ms Duff added that ASC were looking at increasing face-to-face assessments with the public to ensure that their voices were still heard and that statutory responsibilities in relation to the Care Act were met.


d)    Mr McKenzie reiterated Ms Duff’s comments and said that ASC’s approach had been adjusted to ensure best practice, best use of staff and resources and to continue to support staff in every way possible. In terms of trusted assessors, as part of the work that had been undertaken  with health colleagues  ...  view the full minutes text for item 226.


Decisions Taken Outside of the Cabinet Committee Cycle pdf icon PDF 202 KB


The Chairman introduced the item which set out information relating to the decision which had been taken by the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health as an ‘out of cycle’ decision.



20/00084 - Section 75 Partnership Agreement Variation - COVID-19 Hospital Discharges and out of Hospital Work pdf icon PDF 147 KB


(1)        In response to a question, Mr McKenzie stated that the relevant arrangements had been put in place to ensure that individuals that were being discharged out to a care home did receive a Covid-19 test.


(2)        RESOLVED that the report be noted.



Work Programme 2020-21 pdf icon PDF 256 KB

Additional documents:


(1)        RESOLVED that the work programme for 2020-21 be noted, subject to the inclusion of the following item:


·         Winter Plan