To consider the report of the Chief Executive providing an update on the actions of the Leeds Health and Social Care system and Leeds City Council, working with broader partners, in response to and facilitating the recovery from the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic
(Report to follow)
Further to Minute No. 86, 18th November 2020, the Chief Executive submitted a report which provided an update on the continued Coronavirus (COVID-19) work being undertaken across the city including the recovery approach, outbreak management, and details of current issues and risks. The report focussed upon the impact of entering into Tier 3 (‘Very High’) restrictions, current developments and the support in place for people and businesses, with it being noted that the city’s multi-agency command and control arrangements continued to be used with the Response and Recovery plan, aiming to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on those in the city, especially the most vulnerable.
With the agreement of the Chair, the submitted report had been circulated to Board Members as a late item of business prior to the meeting for the reasons as set out in section 9 of the submitted report, and as detailed in Minute No. 93.
By way of introduction to the report, the Chair thanked Council officers, partners across all sectors and also the wider community for their continued efforts in response to the pandemic. The Board also received an update on the roll out of the vaccine in Leeds, the latest position regarding the localised contact tracing service, ongoing liaison with universities and the provision of self-isolation payments and business support grants.
Following the latest review undertaken by Government, it was highlighted that the Council was expecting to hear the outcome of the Government’s deliberations tomorrow on which tier the city would be in. It was noted that this followed Leeds’ recent submission to Government where a Tier 2 designation was recommended.
It was also noted that further guidance from Government regarding the Christmas period was expected imminently, with Members highlighting the importance of any such guidance from Government being clear and consistent.
In response to a Member’s suggestion regarding the vaccination process and the actions which could be taken to help facilitate the provision of community transport to and from vaccination centres, officers undertook to look into this matter further, with the Board also being provided with greater detail on how the roll out of the vaccine and maximising accessibility was envisaged.
In conclusion, the crucial role that Local Government continued to play on such matters was reiterated and it was undertaken that Members would continue to be kept informed on any related developments.
(a) That the change in national restrictions from 2nd December 2020, and the introduction of a revised Tier system and West Yorkshire being placed in Tier 3, be noted, with it also being noted that this is due to be reviewed on 16th December 2020 and that the outcomes of the Government’s deliberations on such matters were expected imminently;
(b) That the extensive work being undertaken across the partnerships to control the spread of the virus, prepare for Covid-19 vaccination, undertake local contact tracing, prepare for asymptomatic community testing, protect the health service, and deliver support to vulnerable people and to businesses, be noted; and that agreement be given for these priorities to continue to be progressed;
(c) That the concurrent pressures on the system, which include winter pressures on the health and care system, flood risk and extreme weather, local government finance and capacity concerns and continued uncertainty around EU Exit, be noted;
(d) That in respect of the financial implications for the Council arising from the Coronavirus pandemic, the contents of the submitted report be used as context when the Board considers the more detailed finance based reports, as presented elsewhere on the agenda.