Agenda and minutes

Health Overview & Scrutiny Panel - Wednesday, 17th July, 2019 2.00 pm

Venue: The Council Chamber, Moorlands House, Leek

Contact: Sally Hampton - Member & Community Support Officer  Tel: 01538 395429 Email:

No. Item


Notification of Substitute Members, if any.


Councillor Page was substitute member for Councillor Atkins.


To Approve the Minutes of the Previous Meeting. pdf icon PDF 107 KB


At this point of the meeting, Councillor Salt requested further detail in relation to the update received from Healthwatch on neurological conditions. Councillor Swindlehurst also asked if the Council had received a further update on an ME Clinic in the Moorlands and more detail on male suicide. The Officers advised that an update had not been received and the matter would be followed up.





1)    That the Minutes of the meeting of the Health Overview & Scrutiny Panel held on 22 May 2019 be APPROVED as a correct record and signed by the Chair;


2)    That a further update in relation to neurological conditions be requested from Healthwatch;


3)    That the request for an update on an ME Clinic in the Moorlands and male suicide be followed up.




Minutes of the Last Meeting of the Healthy Staffordshire Select Committee. pdf icon PDF 192 KB


DECIDED – That the Minutes of the meeting of the Healthy Staffordshire Select Committee held on 10 June 2019 be NOTED.



Urgent Items of Business, if any. (24 hours notice to be provided to the Chairman).


Councillor Salt raised the following urgent item of business:-


“NHS England published its annual Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) assessment on July 11th. Out of 195 CCGs, 11 were graded as inadequate and two of these are in North Staffordshire. I would like to add this item to the agenda for discussion but also propose that “The Chair of SMDC Health Overview and Scrutiny Panel writes to Marcus Warnes and asks him to explain what he intends to do in order for North Staffordshire to provide the ‘outstanding’ practices its citizens deserve.”


In addition to this, Councillor Salt asked for a full of copy of the NHS England report to be provided to members and for the Panel to agree a vote of no confidence in the North Staffordshire CCG.


Members debated this matter in detail and were very concerned about this recent rating of the CCG. To conclude, the Panel and all other members present were supportive of a vote of no confidence in the Leadership Team of the North Staffordshire CCG. Councillor Lawson also offered to raise this matter at the County Council.





1)    The Panel agreed a vote of no confidence in the Leadership Team of the CCG;

2)    For a letter to be sent to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to urge the Department to place the CCG into special measures;

3)    For Marcus Warnes to be invited to attend a meeting of the Health Overview and Scrutiny Panel, to provide a copy of an action plan and explain how the organisation planned to improve the NHS England rating;

4)    For a full copy of the NHS England report to be requested. 



Declaration of Interests:

·         Disclosable Pecuniary Interests

·         Other Interests


Agenda No.

Member Declaring Interest

Nature of Interest



None specific

Cllr P. Wood

Other – Daughter is employed by the NHS


None specific

Cllr J. Jones

Other – Employed by the WMAS.



Questions to Portfolio Holders, if any.


(At least two clear days notice required, in writing, to the Proper Officer in accordance with Procedure Rule 15).




Questions from Councillor Malyon:


Q1. With regard to the question I asked about dyslexia last month, I understood that the Moorlands hospital is providing this service, is this correct?




According to information received, the dyslexia issue will be dealt with by a diagnostic unit which will be installed as part of the extended range of services provided by the hospital hub.


Councillor Malyon advised that she had made her own enquiries with the staff at the hospital and they were not aware of any plans for a dyslexia service to be offered at the hospital. Councillor Bowen re-affirmed that this was the information currently available to the Leader of the Council.


Other members felt that dyslexia was an issue for the Department of Education which in their opinion was currently underfunded.


Q2. Will this council in partnership with the police make all children and families aware of the danger of the drug that is widely available that looks like silver bullets?




Cllr Malyon is referring to the nitrous oxide (known as laughing gas) which is purchased in small silver coloured gas containers.


Staffordshire Young Person’s Substance Misuse Service report that they are aware of some young people who misuse Nitrous Oxide. However, this tends not to be alongside other forms of substance misuse and not to be the primary drug of choice. The most common drugs are still cannabis or alcohol.  In the past 12 months, the Substance Misuse Service identified 7 users of Nitrous Oxide. None of these were from Staffordshire Moorlands.


Staffordshire Police report that they have seem some evidence of Nitrous Oxide misuse in Staffordshire Moorlands but not on a large scale or focussed in any particular locations.


In Sept 2018, the Young Person’s Substance Misuse Service sent a newsletter out to partners in schools, social care, Youth Offending Services, care homes etc around Nitrous Oxide and the risks.  The Staffordshire Moorlands Substance Misuse Worker also provides drop-in sessions at most if not all High Schools and Colleges within Staffordshire Moorlands area so young people can discuss this if they have any concerns 


The Community Safety Partnership will continue to monitor the situation but it is not currently seen as a priority when compared with misuse of other substances.

By way of a supplementary point, Councillor Malyon advised the Panel that this substance was easily obtained and showed an example of a silver cartridge. Councillor Jones advised that in his role as a paramedic he had not witnessed any overdoses due to nitrous oxide and it was usually due to other types of drugs. 


Q3.   Dementia is an increasing illness and the paper that is to come out from the government highlighting the costs of 15 billion to families, will this council be helping families to benefit from the new green paper that the government are producing?




Government Green Papers set out for discussion, proposals which are still at a formative stage. They are consultation documents produced by the Government which aim to allow  ...  view the full minutes text for item 47.


Work Programme. pdf icon PDF 49 KB


Any additional items to be added to the Work Programme:-


i)          Chairman’s items;

ii)         Members items;



The Panel considered its Work Programme and agreed the items listed.


Councillor Swindlehurst provided the Panel with an update on the pilot scheme to move diabetic eye screening into dedicated NHS provision rather than patient’s own opticians. The aim was to increase attendance and provide staff specifically trained in diabetic eye care. There were currently 74,000 registered diabetic patients across Staffordshire.


The aim of the project was to achieve over 80% access to eye clinics within the 6-month trial. As the trial was approaching completion, she had contacted Mr. King who provided positive data showing that the aim had been achieved. A tender had now been submitted to NHS England to continue this service across Staffordshire and Staffordshire Midlands Partnership.


DECIDED: That the Panel’s Work Programme for 2019/20 be agreed.