Agenda and minutes

Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 1st September, 2022 10.30 am

Venue: Committee Suite 1,2 & 3, Westfields, Middlewich Road, Sandbach CW11 1HZ. View directions

Contact: Helen Davies  Tel: 01270 685705 Email:

No. Item


Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies of absence were received from Councillor Lloyd Roberts, Councillor David Marren (Councillor David Edwardes was substituting) and Councillor Liz Wardlaw (Councillor Patrick Redstone was substituting).



Declarations of Interest

To provide an opportunity for Members and Officers to declare any disclosable pecuniary and non-pecuniary interests in any item on the agenda.


There were no declarations of interest.


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 160 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the previous meeting held on 14 June 2022.



RESOLVED: That the minutes be received as a correct and accurate record.


Public Speaking/Open Session

There is no facility to allow questions by members of the public at meetings of the Scrutiny Committee. However, a period of 10 minutes will be provided at the beginning of such meetings to allow members of the public to make a statement on any matter that falls within the remit of the committee, subject to individual speakers being restricted to 3 minutes.


There were no members of the public registered to speak.



Feedback on Quality Accounts: Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust pdf icon PDF 123 KB

For the Committee to provide commentary on the Mid Cheshire NHS Foundation Trust (MCNHSFT) Quality Accounts which will be incorporated into the final document before it is published, as per NHS England and NHS Improvement recommendations to allow scrutiny and comment.  The item will be presented by Sally Mann, Deputy Director of Nursing and Oliver Bennett, Chief Operating Officer at MCNHSFT.


Additional documents:


Councillor Rachel Bailey joined the meeting.


Sally Mann, Deputy Director of Nursing at Mid Cheshire NHS Foundation Trust and Oliver Bennett, Chief Operating Officer at Mid Cheshire NHS Foundation Trust attended the Committee and provided a presentation on the Quality Account.


The Committee noted that:

·         waves two and three of the Covid-19 Pandemic were difficult for the NHS, not as much was achieved as was hoped but the top priority was the quality of care and safety;

·         feedback obtained from patients through NHS Choices showed that 78% had positive experiences as opposed to 22% negative;

·         with regard to Never Events (the kind of mistake (medical error) that should never happen) Mid Cheshire Hospital reported 3 events, no patients had been harmed and they all occurred in theatres.  Out of 1299 deaths it was reported that one could have been avoided;

·         There had been a 70.4% compliance with Sepsis Pathway which met the target; and

·         An anomaly had been uncovered in respect of measuring postpartum haemorrhaging this had been rectified and Mid Cheshire Hospital were no longer considered an outlier.


The Committee were invited to ask questions and there was some discussion that included:

·         There was a query about why Covid vaccinations had dropped from 93%, to 91% and then 71% with the booster.  The Deputy Director of Nursing noted that the figure was improving;

·         The Committee noted that Mid Cheshire Hospital had analysed data and there had been no cased of MRSA, this was deemed to be because there were no instances of norovirus, flu, or the normal infections for that time of the year.  People were wearing PPE and in a super-heightened awareness of infection control;

·         In terms of recruitment, it was acknowledged that recruitment and retention of staff was a challenge, particularly where there had been a reliance on international nurses.  The need for a diverse workforce was known, and the Committee were advised that Chester and Keale were the main areas locally for recruitment of student nurses.  Registered Nursing did not experience any drop in applications for employment, however there were issues attracting health care support workers.  During the pandemic, the availability of furlough and the opportunities of better paid jobs outside of health care meant that many did not return to the profession.  Where Mid Cheshire Hospital would have expected to receive 100 job applications in the past, that figure now reaches 29.

·         Sickness levels dropped to 6% during the pandemic, when they could have risen to 30%;

·         The Committee were particularly interested in the issue relating to de-brief appointments and how can capacity could be created, the Deputy Director of Nursing agreed to take this action back to the Head of Midwifery to get a full answer to the Committee;

·         The national expectation for priority and key national priority was for no patient to wait more than 2-years for treatment, there were none of these patients at Mid-Cheshire and the focus was now on cancer patients;

·         The maintained standard of ambulance handovers in Mid Cheshire,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 48.


Update from the Police and Crime Commissioner

To receive an update on the work of the Police and Crime Commissioner.



John Dwyer, Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Cheshire attended the meeting and gave a verbal update to the Committee.

For the purposes of transparency, the PCC noted that the PCC Panel is the only scrutiny panel for the Commissioner and that the update today was an overview that reflected the needs of the residents in Cheshire, in line with this Committees statutory Crime and Disorder obligation.


The PCC advised that his manifesto was drawn up during his campaigning and he then worked with the Police to determine how to deliver it against the budget.


Priorities included increasing the Police force by 20,000 across England and Wales, the core-handing of 101 non-emergency calls moving from between 40mins-1hour to 6 minutes following investment in the Control Force room.


The National Crime Agency estimated there were 700,000 active paedophiles online, there was a need to accept and understand the cyber world needed to be policed particularly with areas such as bank account fraud etc.  The PCC noted that modern policing was not all about Police on the streets.

The Committee were advised that there was Police and Crime Plan with an audio version available online, and sign language versions availability.

20,000 consultation responses have been fed into the new plan for 2023, following 520,000 household audits asking what future policing needs were.


£8million had been secured for Safer Streets.  This initiative used technology for those vulnerable on the streets or at home.  When calling 999 from a smart phone the operator would send a link to phone and link via video to the caller whilst deploying resources to help.


The PCC gave the opportunity to invite questions from the Committee.


There were some anecdotal points raised about Police Community Safety Officers (PCSOs) in specific areas of Macclesfield not being replaced, and information on the Police website not removing PCSOs that had vacated the post.  The PCC advised the best route to take was to contact his office.

The Safer Streets campaign had been televised on Northwest tonight and throughout the media but the PCC agreed to speak to his communications team to circulate information more widely.


There was praise by the committee for the Rural Crime Squad.  The Committee felt that it was an achievement that should be more widely publicised to move from 60mins to 6mins on the answering time for 101 calls and that it was recognised that a non-emergency could still escalate into an emergency.


The PCC acknowledged the Cost of Living Crisis and the potential impact to residents as a priority for the Police.


On the subject of carbon neutrality, the PCC acknowledged that there was no right answer and that his priority was to reduce costs but he had a team reviewing options for the Police to be carbon neutral by 2040.


John- yes will support road safety initiatives.  Would love to double that number, not going to happen- governed by government who provide figures and 60% of budget.

Government are now looking at  a new funding  ...  view the full minutes text for item 49.


Safer Cheshire East Partnership (SCEP) Update

To receive a presentation by the Director of Adult Social Care on the current priority areas for SCEP.



Jill Broomhall, Director of Adult Social Care and Chair of Safer Cheshire East Partnership (SCEP) Board, presented an update to the Committee, it had been 12-months since the last update.  Saliant points included:


·         The SCEP Board (formed under the Crime and Disorder Act), included representation from the Council, Police, Fire, Youth Offending, and received funded by Police and Crime Commissioner (£185k per annum);

·         SCEP produced strategic intelligence assessment and looked at emerging threats and risks;

·         Sandra Murphy, Head of Adult Safeguarding advised the Committee on how safeguarding linked into SCEP and trying to address criminality;

·         The Complex Safeguarding Forum was formed in May 2021, met every 6-weeks  and met those who were reluctant to engage with services.  Learning was taken away from each meeting and there were links to other councils to share best practice;

·         Domestic Abuse Services, was a theme that was cross-cutting across partnership agendas.  SCEP dealt with Domestic Homicide reviews, there had been an unprecedented amount of referrals but also to Adult Safeguarding Board for reviews.  The Partnership understood this could be due to lockdown pressures, understanding of reporting mechanisms but that learning where issues could have been avoided takes place;

·         SCEP had a safeguarding duty under the prevent legislation to those vulnerable to radicalisation.  SCEP recieved referrals from across spectrum, however there were more from schools than adults;

·         The PREVENT Board had been developed.  It had met once and had the aim to raise awareness with agencies who don’t normally sit around the table;

·         SCEP had developed a Multi-Agency operational Group, to improve outcomes for families from Gypsy and Traveller communities;

·         There was a negative perception of the Council by Gypsy and Roma Travellers and the work being done to address that such as updates to the website to focus on access to services to help with illegal encampments;

·         Working in partnership with both children and adult safeguarding board to tackle exploitation;

·         The Priority of County Lines across Liverpool and Manchester;

·         Domestic Abuse had been a big agenda since the death of Sarah Everett, the Home Office were invested in violence against women and girls.  A consultation in Cheshire East had showed women and girls felt unsafe in some areas of the borough;

·         Across Cheshire East four hotels had been stood-up for asylum seekers.  There were risks associated and safeguarding treatment with those families; and

·         The links from the Police and Crime Commissioner Plan the links back to SCEP.


The item was opened up for questions and there was some discussion that included:


·         The plans Cheshire East had to integrate Asylum Seekers at the Chimney House Hotel into the community.  The Committee were advised that whilst there were still people leaving Afghanistan, the hotel is still stood-up, however some people had moved across the country to live with relatives.  Some funding was received to the council from the Home Office.  Many of the Asylum Seekers had worked with the British and needed to be moved out of the country, and also Ukrainians displaced with the war;  ...  view the full minutes text for item 50.


Appointments to the Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care System Joint Health Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 163 KB

To appoint one Labour Group member and one Independent Group member to the Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care System Joint Health Scrutiny Committee.

Additional documents:


Brian Reed, Statutory Scrutiny Officer presented the report to the Committee that outlined the appointment of Members in line with the Council resolution.  Councillors Stephen Carter and Barry Burkhill had been nominated by the Leading Groups.




That one Labour Group member and one Independent Group member with the appropriate knowledge of health and adult social care be appointed to the Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care System Joint Health Scrutiny Committee.


Named Vote


Councillor Lata Anderson


Councillor Stephen Carter


Councillor Laura Crane


Councillor David Edwardes


Councillor Andrew Gregory


Councillor Brendan Murphy


Councillor Denis Murphy


Councillor Patrick Redstone


Councillor Margaret Simon


Councillor Lesley Smetham


Councillor Rob Vernon



For= 7

Against= 4

Abstention= 0


Decision Carried




Work Programme pdf icon PDF 300 KB

To consider the Work Programme and determine any required amendments.



Helen Davies, Democratic Services Officer updated the Committee on the Work Programme.  The Committee were advised that monthly meetings between the Chair, Vice Chair and designated officer representatives in the statutory scrutiny areas of Health, Crime and Disorder and Flooding were in the process of being scheduled.  This would ensure appropriate and relevant items being brought forward to the Committee.


Items that the Committee had agreed to add to the Work Programme during the previous items were:


1)    PREVENT training update for December 2023;

2)    Another update from the Police and Crime Commissioner early in 2023;

3)    North West Ambulance Service; and

4)    An update from Cheshire Police.




That the Work Programme be received and noted.