Agenda item


Members of Committee gave consideration to a report regarding the work and progress of the Health Commission. Members were provided with the background to the Health Commission and it was explained that the Health Commission sought to be part of the solution to improving the health and wellbeing of communities in West Lindsey.


The Health Commission had been operational for sixteen months, Membership of the Commission was stable and working well, with individual members leading on the thematic areas as agreed and reporting back to the Commission.


Members were advised that it was apparent from work undertaken by the Health Commission and the Government’s agenda at a national level that there would be a continuing role for district councils to identify and promote the delivery for the health needs in their areas.


The experience of running the Health Commission for the last two years had been that it was benefiting the District by focusing on specific issues and helping partners understand the needs in West Lindsey.


The report therefore proposed that a further paper be brought to the Committee in the Autumn cycle of meetings on how the work the Commission had started could be continued through the establishment of a Strategic Health Partnership.


Debate ensued and at the request of a Member, the Chairman of the Health Commission summarised what had been achieved over the past 2 years, indicating that greater detail was contained in Appendix 2 of the report.  Assurance was sought that the Authority could achieve results in this area, with a Member citing a number of original drivers, for example access to GPs, where little progress had been made and service provision had continued to decline.


In responding it was acknowledged that a number of areas of concerns had continued and this was why there was a need to re-structure and re-focus the Group.  Establishing a Partnership would give those appointed the authority and mandate to keep pursuing and chasing partners to deliver the services the District needed.


Whilst not responsible for Health Services directly Members cited a number of ways in which they considered the Authority could influence Health internally, including ensuring major planning applications had to give consideration to health outcomes in their design and nature; and by creating a cycle plan for the District and ensuring the infrastructure for such was provided.  Such provision would go some way to underpinning healthy communities.


In responding Officers indicated their agreement, particularly in respect of planning applications and Members were advised that nationally the Town and Country Planning Association were driving an agenda to achieve just that.  The suggestion of including health outcomes within Committee reports could also be investigated. 


The Public Realm Working Group established by the Challenge and Improvement Committee was also assisting by auditing services such as bridle ways, cycle paths, sports fields etc, within local communities and its work had been influenced by and was supporting the Health Commission.


Members voiced their disappointment at some of the decisions taken by heath care providers in respect of access to services and the majority were in agreement that if re-structuring the Commission would give greater focus and powers of influence, then it should be undertaken. It was important the District Council kept holding partners to account and fighting for services for the District’s residents.




(a)     the Health Commission continue to meet 2 monthly until the end of its remit in 2018;


(b)     a report be brought to the Committee in the Autumn cycle of meetings recommending the establishment of a strategic health partnership for West Lindsey to replace the Health Commission on the completion of its remit (this report should include terms of reference, proposed membership, meeting cycles, desired outcomes, Officer support etc.); and


(c)     the aims and objectives of any “Strategic Health Partnership” for West Lindsey be aligned with those of the Lincolnshire Health and Wellbeing Strategy to ensure proper coordination of delivery within the District.

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