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The Chair welcomed everyone to the remote meeting of the Outer West Community Committee to discuss the proposed closure of Richmond House.
The Chair explained that internet connectivity may be an issue for some participants and suggested it may be appropriate to appoint a Vice Chair who could assume the Chair should the Chair lose connectivity. The Chair proposed that Councillor David Blackburn be nominated as the Vice Chair, the proposal was seconded, upon been put to the vote the motion was passed.
There had been a number of technical issues prior to the start of the meeting it was noted that Cllr David Blackburn was having connectivity issues. Therefore, the Chair proposed that if she and Cllr David Blackburn both lost connectivity that it would be appropriate to propose a third person to assume the Chair. The Chair proposed Cllr Trish Smith, this proposal was seconded and on being put to the vote the motion was passed.
It was noted that there were a number of technical issues. Unfortunately, the meeting was delayed and did not commence until 13:15.
Appeals Against Refusal of Inspection of Documents
To consider any appeals in accordance with Procedure Rule 15.2 of the Access to Information Procedure Rules (in the event of an Appeal the press and public will be excluded).
(*In accordance with Procedure Rule 15.2, written notice of an appeal must be received by the Head of Governance Services at least 24 hours before the meeting.)
There were no appeals against refusal of inspection of documents.
Exempt Information - Possible Exclusion Of The Press And Public
1 To highlight reports or appendices which officers have identified as containing exempt information, and where officers consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information, for the reasons outlined in the report.
2 To consider whether or not to accept the officers recommendation in respect of the above information.
3 If so, to formally pass the following resolution:-
RESOLVED – That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following parts of the agenda designated as containing exempt information on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the press and public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information, as follows:
There were no exempt items.
To identify items which have been admitted to the agenda by the Chair for consideration.
(The special circumstances shall be specified in the minutes.)
There were no late items.
Declaration Of Disclosable Pecuniary Interest
To disclose or draw attention to any Disclosable pecuniary interests for the purposes of Section 31 of the Localism Act 2011 and paragraphs 13-16 of the Members’ Code Conduct.
There were no declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests.
Apologies For Absence
To receive any apologies for absence.
Apologies were received from Cllr. Forsaith.
Open Forum / Community Forum
In accordance with Paragraphs 4.16 and 4.17 of the Community Committee Procedure Rules, at the discretion of the Chair a period of up to 10 minutes may be allocated at each ordinary meeting for members of the public to make representations or to ask questions on matters within the terms of reference of the Community Committee. This period of time may be extended at the discretion of the Chair. No member of the public shall speak for more than three minutes in the Open Forum, except by permission of the Chair.
In order to facilitate the Open Forum item whilst Community Committee meetings are being held remotely, the process has been adapted slightly, so that members of the public are invited to make written submissions in advance of the meeting on any matter which falls within the Committee’s terms of reference.
On this occasion two submissions had been received from:
· Ms Sylvia Landells on behalf of Leeds Hospital Alert;
· Ms Stella Smales on behalf of UNISON trade union.
The following submissions were read out at the meeting:
“Richmond House has a reputation second to none for supportive, person-centred and effective rehab care for older people.
Successful rehab for older people coming out of hospital is extremely cost-effective for both the NHS and Social Care.
The "market" in Care Home/Respite/Rehab accommodation is extremely unstable (and likely to be more so after the pandemic). If Richmond House closes, private provision is unlikely to meet these needs in future.
When you break up a good staff team in a care home they are gone forever. ”
“Leeds UNISON believes it is because of Covid that the last 11 months Richmond House has been under used. LCC upgraded Richmond House extensively in 2018 to ensure it was fit for purpose to accommodate residents comfortably. By closing Richmond house the money that was spent will be wasted. Richmond House was awarded a CQC rating of good.
Leeds UNISON believes there may be an alternative to closing Richmond House. The alternative would be to turn it into a residential dementia care unit.
The Green in Seacroft provided long term care for dementia patients, but this was closed by the Council. The closure of the Green was strongly opposed by Leeds UNISON at the time.
LCC has only 10 specific beds for service users with Dementia care across the City.
Caring for people who are suffering from dementia is a specialised job that requires skills, understanding, patience, and commitment.
Leeds UNISON believe if Richmond House was opened as a Residential Care home specialising in dementia care this would give people who have family members suffering from dementia the reassurance that their loved ones were being cared for in a safe environment.
If LCC go ahead with closing Richmond House this will be another important resource that will be gone from Farsley and the west of Leeds.”
To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 1st December 2020 as a correct record.
RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting held on 1st December 2020, be approved as a correct record.
The report of the Director of Adults and Health provides information about the consultation on the proposed closure of Home Lea House Long Stay Residential Care Home and Richmond House Short Stay Residential Care Home. This includes; timescales, options for participation, how to seek support to participate where needed and next steps following the consultation period.
The Chair informed the Members that Ms Landells had posed a number of questions as part of her submission to the Open Forum. However, there was not enough time to go through the questions, therefore she read out the questions and requested that the officers answered them as part of the presentation to the Committee.
The questions were as follows:
1. Has a full impact assessment been done on the implications of the closure of Richmond House on current and possible future residents' physical and mental health and rehabilitation potential?
2. What evidence is there that the proposed future placements for people who would have gone to Richmond House will be anymore effective and safe?
3. The Council-employed hospital social workers are working with people in the 4 wards in Beckett Wing at St.James Hospital and Wharfedale General Hospital, outsourced to Villacare, which all "need improvement" according to the latest Care Quality Commission reports. Why not transfer directly to Richmond House, a "good" care home?
The report of the Director Adults & Health provided information about the consultation on the proposed closure of Home Lea House Long Stay Residential Care Home and Richmond House Short Stay Residential Care Home. This included; timescales, options for participation, how to seek support to participate where needed and next steps following the consultation period.
In attendance for this item were:
· Cllr Charlwood - Executive Member for Health, Wellbeing and Adults;
· Cath Roff – Director of Adults & Health;
· Sarah Buncall – Project Manager for Adults & Health;
· Steve Hume, Chief Officer Resources & Strategy, Adults & Health;
· Shona MacFarlane, Deputy Director Social Care & SC Service , Adults & Health;
· Debbie Ramskill, Head of Service, Care Delivery.
Cllr Charlwood said that this was a difficult time for local council finances and there were some difficult decisions being made. She referred to the closure of the Green, explaining that difficult negotiations had taken place with the NHS in relation to its closure, as they ceased to provide residential care and moved to a more sustainable model funding wise, to provide intermediate care.
During these negotiations Richmond House was not commissioned by the NHS for the purpose of intermediate care. Cllr Charlwood said that Covid had caused issues with a 20% reduction in spend. She explained that where possible the council would commission services with the NHS.
Cath Roff, the Director of Adults and Health provided a brief overview of the issues. Members were informed that Richmond House was a 20 bed residential home which is quite small in comparison to the capacity required by the NHS of residential care. This has an impact on unit cost and how staffed.
It was noted that in 2017 funding had ceased for Richmond House. The council had looked at alternative uses and settled on short term support in the way of short breaks, and convalescence.
Members were advised that occupancy had been low pre Covid, with only 54% occupancy. Rehab capacity which was commissioned by CCG had also been under occupied with people ... view the full minutes text for item 30.
Any other business
Members requested an informal meeting to discuss funding in relation to projects such as CCTV and the Christmas lights. It was noted that at the next formal meeting of the Community Committee, information would be provided in relation to the rolling projects supported by the Committee.
The Localities Officer agreed that he would contact the organisations to provide them with information with regards to funding submissions.
Cllr Seary advised the Members that the computers which had been donated to schools would be added to the schools network, and it would be for the schools to decide who the devices should go to.
Date and time of next meeting
The next meeting of the Outer West Community Committee will be on 17th February 2021, at 1pm.
The next meeting of the Outer West Community Committee will be on Wednesday 17th February 2021, at 1:00pm.
The meeting concluded at 14:30