Hounslow Council

Agenda and minutes

Health and Adults Care Scrutiny Panel
Monday, 6 June 2011 7:00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, Civic Centre, Lampton Road, Hounslow. View directions

Contact: Carol Stiles Tel: 0208 583 2066 or email:  carol.stiles@hounslow.gov.uk 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence, declarations of Interest and other Communication


The Chair welcomed all present to the Scrutiny Panel.


Apologies had been received from Councillor Harris, Councillor Vaught, who had a clash with another Council meeting, and Councillor Kaur, who was unwell. Councillor Collins would be joining the meeting later from the meeting of the Disability Community Forum.


Councillor Colin Ellar, Councillor Poonam Dhillon and Councillor Todd were also in attendance.


There were no declarations of interest or other communications.




Minutes of the meeting held on 18 April 2011 and matters arising pdf icon PDF 87 KB


The minutes of the meeting held on 18 April 2011 were confirmed as an accurate record.


There were the following matters arising:


Members had requested - a list of organisations that were consulted in relation to day centre closures and Leaders following the extension of the consultation period; that the Panel should seek advice from Legal Services on concerns relating to the consultation process; and a list of forthcoming inspections in Community Services and the Trusts in the borough. Panel members had been provided with an update in relation to these points in their briefing note.




Update from West Middlesex University Hospital - Turnaround Strategy - Presentation by West Middlesex Hospital pdf icon PDF 804 KB

Additional documents:


The Chair welcomed the team from West Middlesex University Hospital who were attending for the presentation. Jacqueline Docherty, Chief Executive of West Middlesex University Hospital, Tom Hayhoe, Chairman, West Middlesex Hospital Trust and Andrew Murphy, Turnaround Director, West Middlesex Hospital were all present. Sue Jeffers, NHS Hounslow, also attended.


The Chair proposed that members should allow Jacqueline Docherty to give her presentation and then hold questions until the end.


Ms Docherty explained that the presentation set out the plans for West Middlesex University Hospital and its future organisation. It looked back as well as forward. As the new Chief Executive she was aware of the chequered history and pressures on bed management, so it had been decided to look at a better way of working. The outcome was a two year productivity improvement programme. Year 1 involved efficiency gains and introducing a way of working to achieve savings. There was a planned deficit in Year 1.


Year 2 involved the delivery of £9m in savings and the Trust breaking even. Work had been consolidated by bringing in Andrew Murphy and his expertise. His involvement would gradually be tailed down as the plan was going forward.


However, having developed the programme, there was then a change in Government policy to take into account, aiming at the continuation of care closer to home and the consolidation of specialist services. There were issues here for West Middlesex as a general hospital.


Ms Docherty spoke of GP led commissioning. Her personal view was that this would help as it allowed a clinical focus on treating patients. She believed that there were lots of benefits from the proposals but it was a matter of how to take them forward.


Ms Docherty pointed out that the present Government and the previous administration were moving towards all Trusts becoming Foundation Trusts. There would no longer be a separate category other than Foundation Trust. The Trust was also expected to make savings of 15-20% over 4 years and sought to provide a good quality service within the financial ‘envelope’ available. Hence they were looking at tariffs and efficiency savings to consider how to make the savings happen. The Hospital was a small organisation with high overheads, partly because of the Private Finance Initiative (PFI). So the plan sought to move to low overheads. Ms Docherty noted that the Hospital had a good site, well served by public transport. They needed to consider whether to utilise the site to the maximum or to retrench from the older buildings, but it was felt that there were advantages to utilising the site to the full.


Councillor Todd asked what was meant by tariff and was informed that this referred to what the hospital got from those commissioning its services. She spoke of the level of tariff nationally without the impact of the PFI. There was a move to achieve consistent quality. In some areas the hospital was in the upper quartile for performance but the aim was to be consistent  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.


Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Health and Adult’s Care Scrutiny Panel will be Wednesday, 20 July 2011 at 7.00 p.m.  This is the date confirmed in the current Council calendar agreed at the Annual Borough Council.


Please note that this is a change from the date scheduled in an earlier version of the calendar, which was Tuesday, 19 July 2011.


The date of the next meeting was confirmed as Wednesday, 20 July 2011 at 7.00 p.m. This date had been moved from 19 July 2011.


Any other matters that the Chair considers urgent


The Chair had been notified of and agreed to accept two urgent matters.


  1. Councillor Collins advised that in the late autumn around October/November 2010 he had raised a question about the inspection of care homes, especially in respect of inspection via the local authority. He had received an unsatisfactory response from the Director of Community Care Services, which was a standard response without explanation. There had then been work on the Community Services cuts programme and he was not sure whether Scrutiny, recognising the workload, had the opportunity to respond back and seek a more considered response.


Councillor Collins asked whether the Panel might take up this matter again and raise it through the London Scrutiny Network in view of the recent Panorama programme. He believed that the latter could have an impact on the London Borough of Hounslow if it led to closure of homes to which the authority might refer residents. He also referred to the Sheltered Housing Review.


The Chair agreed personally that it would be a good idea as an area to look at but potentially there would be a change in the membership of the panel and it would be proper to allow an appreciation of the work programme by whoever was chairing the panel in the coming Municipal Year. He suggested that following the Overview and Scrutiny Committee’s appointments, Councillor Collins might bring this back with the new Chair of the Panel.


Deepa Patel, Scrutiny Officer, advised that Scrutiny could in the meantime ask for an update from the Director of Community Services.


Councillor Pam Fisher suggested that rather than Panel members trailing around the homes, it would be sensible if they requested copies of the CQC reports so that members could read through recommendations and then go back to see whether the recommendations had been put in place.


Councillor Todd pointed out that in respect of the Panorama programme, CQC had conceded that they had failed. He had raised concern on a similar related point that there were no councillors’ visits to Children’s Homes and believed that members should be trained up to undertake visits as they had the responsibility for Corporate Parenting. This was part of members’ overall responsibility of governance and he welcomed the suggestion.


The Chair confirmed that Deepa Patel would ask for further information.



  1. As Vice Chair, Councillor Pam Fisher, commended Councillor Rajawat in his role as Chair. She had been pleased to be his deputy and believed that they had worked well together in a cross party situation. She expressed sadness that he would not be Chair for the forthcoming Municipal Year. She believed that he had worked extra hard and given his all in understanding the brief. She commented that all the opposition members on the Panel were very disappointed as Councillor Rajawat had taken a consensual approach with colleagues. She hoped that they could ‘keep the flag flying’ in continuing this positive work.


The Chair appreciated the sentiments, noting that change happened and could be for  ...  view the full minutes text for item 17.