The Scrutiny Support Officer submitted an introductory report on the development of Middlesbrough's first Joint Health and Well Being Strategy 2012-2022 which set out the long - term vision of the Middlesbrough Health and Well Being Board and how through collaborative working would respond to priorities identified in the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment.
The Strategy provided the overarching vision and strategic framework for improving health and well being and tackling health inequalities in Middlesbrough. The Strategy was underpinned by a number of national and local policies, strategies and action plans as set out in the draft document.
The Director of Public Health gave a presentation which included a Middlesbrough Health Transformation Programme update, progress on improving health and well being challenges and the emerging Joint Health and Well Being Strategy framework.
Specific reference was made to ongoing discussions regarding the most appropriate model to be established for the local Health Watch which would be supported by national Health Watch. The preferred option was to allow sufficient time for a Local Health Watch to develop expertise over the next few years and then consideration given to adopting a south tees approach as in the case of existing Foundation Trusts.
In response to clarification sought concerning the involvement of the MVDA with regard to representation on the Health and Well Being Board the Panel was advised that the organisation was facilitating the identification of the most appropriate voluntary sector representation on the Board.
In discussing the importance for community engagement to be at the right level, Members requested further information on such mechanisms and with particular regard to the BME community. Reference was made to evidence which had been obtained from local health representatives which had demonstrated problems of access and take up by members of the BME community to certain health services. Whilst reference was made to the supporting structures including the Task and Finish Groups of the Health and Well Being Board the Panel was keen to ascertain more detailed information on which group and persons would be responsible for that area of work.
In terms of the current health picture in Middlesbrough the Panel's attention was first drawn to improving trends.
Statistical information was provided which showed that male life expectancy rates were increasing although still below the rate for Tees and the English average. It was noted that there was a similar pattern in respect of female life expectancy.
Middlesbrough had continued to make progress in improving health outcomes for the local population over recent years but an increased rate of improvement was required to narrow the gap with the England trend.
Specific reference was made to deaths from cardiovascular diseases which had fallen faster in Middlesbrough compared to England falling by 66% between 1995 and 2010. It was acknowledged that this had been achieved not only by improvements in primary and secondary care but contributions from a whole system approach including early diagnosis, preventative measures and early screening.
Graphical information was also provided which demonstrated the gradient of social inequalities in health life expectancy which reduced by two years for every mile from the suburb to the Town Centre. One of the challenges was to focus on reducing the life expectancy gap even further between Middlesbrough and England.
Through consultation with key partners and reflecting on the findings of the JSNA, the Health and Well Being Board had identified four strategic aims as follows:-
- Ensure children and young people have the best health and well being.
- Reduce preventable ill-health and early deaths.
- Ensure high quality, sustainable and joined up health, social care and well being services.
- Tackle social causes of poor health and well being.
Such themes would form the basis of the Board's annual work programme and focus on implementing actions and ways of working, over and above existing activity under each of the themes. The draft Strategy document provided details on the current picture, strategic priorities for the Board to focus on and high level outcomes.
Targets within the Strategy would be monitored against the JSNA priorities and the public health outcomes framework.
In terms of the proposed timetable it was noted that the Strategy was to be considered and agreed by the Health and Well Being Board in October 2012.
The Panel noted that as part of its remit the Health and Well Being Board was responsible for promoting integrated and partnership working between the NHS, social care, public health and other local services. Whilst Members acknowledged the statement made that the Board would influence partner agencies and strategic forums to ensure social causes of poor health and well being were being addressed it was considered that there should be more explicit reference to how issues such as the impact of average household income and access to affordable sport and leisure facilities would be advocated in the existing and emerging structures.
RECOMMENDED as follows:-
1. That in consultation with the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Panel a briefing note be compiled outlining the Panel's views on the matters raised with regard to the Health and Well Being Board.
2. That further information be provided on the mechanisms for providing appropriate representation from the voluntary sector on the Health and Well Being Board and its supporting structures and specifically the engagement with the BME community.
3. That further clarification be provided as to the areas within the existing and emerging structures which would focus on the influencing social factors, explicitly the impact of average household income and affordable access to sport and leisure facilities.