Decision Maker: Adults and Health Committee, Scrutiny Committee, Council
Decision status: Recommmend Forward to Council
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
For the Committee to note the progress on the new governance arrangements for local Health and Care services, to consider and comment on the proposed joint scrutiny arrangements for Cheshire & Merseyside and approve the amended ‘Protocol for the establishment of Joint Health Scrutiny Arrangements in Cheshire and Merseyside’.
Helen Charlesworth-May, Executive Director of Adults, Health and Integration introduced the report to the Committee, the report was considered by the Adults and Health Service Committee on 30 May, who had been asked to make decisions, detail of which was contained within the report that was for review by the Scrutiny Committee.
The report outlined progress with design and implementation and the proposed scrutiny arrangements for Cheshire East when the Integrated Care System (ICS) would be implemented across the Cheshire and Merseyside (C&M) footprint on the 1 July.
The key considerations for the report included the joint scrutiny arrangements and the political balance arrangement across the nine authorities, the Committee was advised that these did not impact on any existing stand-alone arrangements the local authority had in place for Health Scrutiny.
Deborah Upton, Senior Lawyer advised the Committee that as an example, if the Integrated Care Board (ICB) wished to implement any new policies across the C&M area, the joint committee would consider the referral. Political balance has to be calculated across all nine authorities, and would be reviewed post-elections and on an annual basis to ensure that any changes were taken into account.
The Chair noted there had been a point raised by members of the Adults and Health Committee, as to the proportionality of the joint committee, as Cheshire East had a larger population than some others and Members felt that this should have been taken into account when considering the proportionality. The Senior Lawyer advised that, the calculation of political balance had been adhered to across C&M as a collective and this did not take population numbers into consideration.
The Committee were invited to ask questions and make comments.
There were comments of concern that related to the proportionality of the joint committee.
The Senior Lawyer advised the Committee that there had been a request to write to the Secretary of State (SoS) by Members of the Adult and Health Committee. The Monitoring Officer had advised that any appeal to the SoS would require a change to legislation and therefore was unlikely to be successful.
The Committee were pleased to note that rural proofing had been retained within the report, however there was some discussion about coterminous boundaries. The Committee had a strong desire to retain co-terminosity across Cheshire. The Executive Director of Adults, Health and Integration advised that patient choice was recognised, and there are options for those requiring care into Greater Manchester, Derbyshire, or Staffordshire, however Cheshire East would be part of the wider C&M footprint and even if Cheshire East had local arrangements with Cheshire West, there were no guarantees that funding would flow from C&M equally.
The Chair asked that the specific and unique requirements of the rural borough be acknowledged, and additionally she requested further information for the Committee regarding the 2 seats allocated to Cheshire East for the Joint Scrutiny committee who was responsible for choosing/nominating Cheshire East representatives, and on what premise was the political proportionality of the Cheshire East representation to the Joint Scrutiny Committee based?
The recommendations within the report were considered, there was agreement to split the two parts of the second recommendation as the Committee were unable to reach an accord on the third recommendation.
1) the progress to date on the Place Partnership Board (working title) be noted;
2) the establishment of a Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care System Joint Health Scrutiny Committee be recommended to Council; and
3) a meeting date be sought for this Committee in July to discuss in more detail the ‘Protocol for the establishment of Joint Health Scrutiny Arrangements in Cheshire and Merseyside’.
Report author: Brian Reed
Publication date: 25/07/2022
Date of decision: 14/06/2022
Decided at meeting: 14/06/2022 - Scrutiny Committee