Agenda item - Public Involvement

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Agenda item

Public Involvement

To consider the following items raised by members of the public:


Three written questions have been received (see addendum)


27.1    Public Question from Linda Miller

27.1(a)            The following question was asked by Ms Linda Miller:

“What data is HOSC keeping?

Do you have accurate data for:

·         A&E waiting times?

·         62-day target of being seen for cancer?

·         18-week target for surgery?

·         How many hospital beds per 1000 in Brighton and Hove?

·         How many beds per 1000 for mental health patients? 

·         The current population of Brighton and Hove?

·         How much was the CCG budget for 2016-17? How much is the budget for 2017-18?

The CCG, via their Big Conversation events, claim to be improving A&E, cancer care and mental health. We need to know that accurate records are being kept, that every 3 months this data will be compared with the previous period, and whether the services are improving or getting worse will be published.

If the Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee isn’t keeping accurate records how will we know if things are improving or getting worse? How will HOSC hold the CCG to account?” 

27.1(b)            The Chair responded: “Thank you for your question. The HOSC does not itself gather and record data, but it works closely with NHS bodies to understand and monitor performance. For example, Sussex HOSCs meet regularly with Brighton & Sussex University Hospitals Trust to examine the trust’s quality and performance and improvement data. This includes data on A&E waiting times, cancer targets and the 18 week referral to treatment target.

The HOSC holds similar meetings with Sussex Partnership Trust and with South East Coast Ambulance Trust. The minutes from these meetings are included for information in the HOSC papers. Performance data is also regularly published in the trust board papers which are available on their websites. The CCG publishes extensive financial data, including annual budget figures on its website.”

27.1(c) Ms Miller asked a supplementary question querying what the HOSC does with NHS performance data to hold local NHS bodies to account. The Chair agreed to provide a written answer to this question.





27.2    Public Question from Christopher Tredgold



27.2(a)            The following question was asked by Dr Tredgold:


“At the last HOSC meeting it was stated that the eight Brighton and Hove GP practices that had by then closed were mostly small ones and that it was the total number of General Practitioners, rather than the number of practices, that was important.


I think both are important. Patients, especially as they get older, don’t want to travel a long distance to see their GP.


As for total numbers, the CCG has told me that Brighton and Hove have only 1 Full Time Equivalent GP per 2300 patients against a national average of 1 per 1800/1900.


I would like to know if and how this shortage impacts on the quality of care GP in Brighton and Hove is providing and how that is measured?”


27.2(b)            The Chair responded: “Thank you for your question. As we have an item on GP sustainability on today’s agenda, and as information provided by the CCG for this item explicitly addresses the issue of local GP to patient ratios, I will be sure to ask about how this low level of GPs impacts upon patient care. I am sure that other members will bear your question in mind also.”




27.3      Public Question from Tony Graham


27.3(a)            Mr Graham asked the following question:


“In the Council's Policy, Resources & Growth Committee Minutes (from 12th Oct 17, Agenda Item 48, Section 6.15) reference is made to Health & Social Care Integration Plans supporting... 'all our key principles; Public accountability, Citizen focussed, Increasing equality and Active citizenship (sic)'.    Later on, Appendix 3 of this Agenda Item referring to the 'Cross Party Health and Social Care Integration Working Group' includes the following:  

"Papers and minutes of each meeting will be issued within seven days before subsequent meetings and will be confidential; Members will decide at the end of the meeting those items which may be discussed more widely." 


In the light of the Council's key principles, will HOSC commit to securing the removal of the confidentiality requirement drawn up for the Cross Party Health and Social Care Integration Working Group?   If not, please will HOSC explain why exactly such secrecy is seen as necessary?” 


27.3(b)            The Chair replied: “Thank you for your question. The council is committed to transparency and operates a committee system which ensures that as many decisions as possible are taken in public.


However, neither the council nor any other public body could reasonably commit to holding every planning, scoping and preparatory meeting in public or making the notes of those meetings publicly available. In the early stages of a project it is particularly important that information can be shared and ideas developed in an informal and confidential space.


As health and social care integration progresses there will be regular reports in public, as there have been to date – to wit the reports to Policy, Resources & Growth Committee in July and in October 2017.”


27.3(c)            Mr Graham asked a supplementary question: “Do Councillor Members of HOSC have a red line in relation to the possible development of an Accountable Care Organisation for this area? (I ask this where such an ACO is envisaged as having one or more commercial organisations as key players with capitation-set budgets, and where they are without meaningful democratic accountability to the electorate.) The Chair agreed to provide a written answer to this question.


27.4      Public Question from Valerie Mainstone


27.4(a)            Ms Mainstone asked the following question:


"Will the Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee please scrutinise the Patient Transport Service with all possible speed?

My personal experiences (which have been circulated to members separately) demonstrate that PTS is close to breakdown, and that its management is lamentable. Valuable human and material resources are being wasted at huge public expense every day, while PTS staff and patients are completely frustrated."


27.4(b)            The Chair responded: “Thank you for your question. Your original question included lots of information about the problems you have encountered with the patient transport service. This has been circulated to members, and I’m sure everyone shares my concerns about your experiences.


However, the HOSC is barred from considering individual cases or complaints, so we haven’t included this information in the papers for today’s meeting.


We do have concerns about PTS services and were already planning to have a report on patient transport at the next HOSC meeting. I have also asked Healthwatch to present their findings on PTS at this meeting.”


27.4(c)            Ms Mainstone noted that she was concerned with the time taken to scrutinise patient transport services. Fran McCabe told members that the Healthwatch report on PTS will be published before the next HOSC meeting and will be available on the Healthwatch website.





Supporting documents:


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