Agenda item - Winter Service Pressures

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Agenda item

Winter Service Pressures

Report of Director of Public Health (copy attached).


35.1         The Board considered a report of the Director of Public Health which explained that the requirement for effective winter planning crossed different organisations and a wide range of services, such as highways, emergency planning, housing, adult social care, schools, and primary & secondary health care services.  Some organisations produced their own detailed operational winter plans.  The report described the preparations and connectivity in winter planning across the local authority and clinical commissioning group in Brighton and Hove.   The report was presented by Dr Max Kammerling, Consultant in Public Health and Kevin Claxton, Resilience Manager.


35.2    Councillor Meadows referred to a scrutiny panel in 2010 which had asked for a winter plan for all council services.  She asked how many of the recommendations of the panel had been incorporated into the current report. 


35.3    The Resilience Manager explained that a great deal of work had been carried out since the scrutiny panel.  The current report co-ordinated the good work that was taking place.  The Consultant in Public Health explained that officers had checked to ensure that the report was consistent with the scrutiny panel recommendations.  


35.4    Frances McCabe asked whether there would be co-ordinated planning.  She stressed that flu epidemics could be serious and noted that the figure for staff uptake was low.  She asked if large organisations provided the opportunity for staff to have flu vaccinations on the premises. If staff were not taking up flu vaccination this would not be giving confidence to members of the public.  Ms McCabe suggested that the role of the voluntary sector could be considered.  The voluntary sector carried out a great deal of work with vulnerable people.  Ms McCabe referred to paragraph 3.2.5 in relation to pharmacies.  Ms McCabe stated that both issues had now been resolved.  Ms McCabe informed members that an urgent care report would be produced by the CCG and Healthwatch. 


35.5    Tom Scanlon reported that there had been an uptake in flu vaccinations.  Geraldine Hoban agreed that there had been a continued increase in uptake and targets on uptake had almost been met.   


35.6    The Resilience Manager informed members that he was working closely with the Civil Contingency Team with regard to joint planning.  With regard to the voluntary sector, there was an umbrella group of resilience groups for Sussex.  There was now clarification that cold weather work would be carried out to all local pharmacies.


35.7    Councillor Norman referred to the issue of gritting during cold weather.  He accepted that main bus routes were gritted, but stressed that a big issue to address was the fact that many older people lived in the outer areas of the city which were not gritted.  This meant that many older, frail people could not leave their homes during periods of snow and ice.

35.8    Councillor Norman stressed that many accidents happened in these outer areas and this occupied the emergency services and A&E.  He did accept, however, that a great deal of good work was carried out by officers visiting vulnerable people in 4 by 4 vehicles. 


35.9    Tom Scanlon reported that research had shown that grit was distributed where most accidents occurred.  He stressed that there was a need to discourage older people from leaving their homes in periods of severe weather.  There was a need to ensure that GPs, meals on wheels etc could reach older people during these periods. 


35.10  RESOLVED – (1)That the range of activities are noted and that the Director of Public Health is given delegated responsibility to develop further mechanisms to ensure coordinated and integrated working.



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