Scrutiny Agenda: Thursday , 30 July 2015 ; 6.00pm

Click to access 300715-scrutiny-agenda-combined.pdf

8  NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group decision on community hospital beds (pages 9 – 10)   A representative from the NEW Devon CCG has been requested to attend by the Chairman to discuss the recent decision on community beds on 16 July 2015, with particular focus on the weight given to the stakeholder report, chaired by Sir JohnEvans.
Financial Plan and Draft Transformation strategy
(pages 11- 45) A  chance for the Committee to debate the Financial Plan and draft Transformation
Strategy that sets both the financial and cultural approach for the future.
Sickness absence (pages 46–51) A report on measures in place to impact on the number of working days lost due to sickness absence. The requirement for this report was previously identified by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee in reviewing the performance indicator relating to working days lost.
11 Media Protocol (pages 52 – 62) An opportunity for the Committee to familiarise themselves with the recently updated and approved protocol and raise questions in respect of the Council’s East Devon District Council communications.   The protocol as presented to Cabinet on 17 June 2015 is reproduced in these agenda papers.
Local Elections 7 May 2015 (pages 63 – 71)  A report of the Chief Executive on the issues raised by the Committee in relation to the recent local elections and the learning points for future elections.
Scrutiny forward plan (page 72)  Opportunity for the committee to raise topics for scoping, to determine if and when they should be listed on the forward plan.


“Multiple errors
64* –Some authorities experienced more than one issue in their delivery of the elections which either individually or cumulatively may have had a detrimental impact on voters and those standing for election.

Seven ROs overseeing elections in the following local authorities: Allerdale, Darlington, East Devon, East Lindsey, Kingston upon Hull, Stoke on Trent, and West Lindsey.”

So, when Mark Williams makes light of his difficulties with this year’s elections and blames  pressure of work and inexperienced staff , remember that only these 7 local authorities out of a total of 433 had multiple mistakes.


Extraordinary Meeting of the Council – 138 page agenda and background papers

“Newly elected Councillors please note that the Extra Ordinary and Ordinary meetings will be preceded at 5.00 pm with a briefing in the Council Chamber – the Chief Executive will outline the business of the meeting and the procedures.”


Planning Minister “will write local plans himself” if councils don’t buck up

He says he and his department will write up Local Plans “in consultation with local people” if any Local Plan is not finalised by early 2017.

Some voters might feel this is an innovation that may be worth waiting for, local people having had little or no influence on current Local Plans!

Cabinet Minister Michael Gove’s wife complains about his treatment at Minor Injuries Unit and a nurse replies

A bone to pick with NHS
My husband tripped over a toy and banged his foot in the middle of the night on Saturday (as you do).

The next morning, I drove him to the nearest minor injuries unit, where a nurse said it was probably broken and required an X-ray. Except, being a Sunday, radiology was shut. She suggested he come back on Monday.

But his work diary was packed (he left home before 8am and returned after I was asleep); Tuesday’s, too. He is still hobbling around on crutches, chucking down painkillers and groaning melodramatically. The foot has not yet been X-rayed. Obviously it’s not life threatening. But it is very painful.Trouble is, like most people, he doesn’t have a spare half-day to sit around awaiting the pleasure of the hospital radiographer.

No one is suggesting NHS staff don’t work very hard and do an excellent job. Just that the service needs to be a 24/7 one. And that means all departments — not just acute emergency departments — need to be available at weekends.

Read more:

A nurse replies

Dear Mr Cameron and Mr Gove,

The hits just keep on coming as they say.

I read with interest this article published in the Telegraph yesterday. It would appear that the practice of besmirching the reputation of the people that keep the NHS working (predominantly on the basis of goodwill alone I might add) is spreading within the Cabinet that governs this nation.
Perhaps I could enlighten you on a few issues that have been grossly misrepresented in this article.

1. The headline claims that Mr Gove was ” left on crutches after doctors were unable to see him over weekend”. Well if Mr Gove attends a nurse lead minor injuries unit why would he expect to see a doctor? Its likely Mr Gove would have known he was visiting a minor injuries unit and it also clearly stated on the hospital’s website that its nurse-lead. Surely it is not beyond the wit of a former Education Secretary to realise this and if indeed a doctors opinion was specifically required, why not make use of the out of hours service? Finally and perhaps most important, is it being implied that an experienced nurse is incapable of providing sound medical advice?

2. Mr Gove was unable to receive treatment because of a lack of “Sunday services”. Again if you visit a hospital with a minor injuries unit who’s main function is rehabilitation (see website) what do you expect? It cannot be claimed that such a small community hospital is representative of NHS acute services. I’m pretty sure that Mr Gove would have been redirected to a hospital with an A&E if it was clinically indicated. There I’m certain he would have found plenty of consultants and dare I say it radiographers too!

3. “NHS radiology departments are closed on Sundays”. On what planet?! Ask the thousands of people involved in road traffic accidents, the people attending hospitals over the weekend with chest complaints, the inpatients who need urgent scans, the patients suffering heart attacks that need cardiologists; the list goes on. Most importantly, ask the legion of radiographers and radiologists who perform and interpret the images 24 hours a day 365 days a year. How dare you tell such a bare faced lie Ms Vine?!

4. Ms Vine also states that Mr Gove “like most people, doesn’t have a spare half-day to sit around awaiting the pleasure of the hospital radiographer”.

What an incredibly offensive statement. This exemplifies the total lack of understanding this government has. If you want 7 day services, PAY FOR IT! If you cannot or don’t want to pay for it be honest, say so and stop LYING to the public.

Indeed on this particular point, it is claimed that Mr Gove was too busy to see a doctor during the week because of his busy schedule. I’m afraid it was Mr Gove’s decision to wait till the weekend when his condition and pain worsened before seeking medical attention. If you are ill, see a doctor promptly if its that bad; preferably when the medical services are better staffed and equipped to deal with your complaint. If you insist on using under resourced acute and emergency services to fit in with your working life, please do not complain when you have to wait to see the hardworking and dedicated professionals that are prioritising their time according to clinical need.

Finally Gentlemen, lets stop with the propaganda and political games. It is simply dangerous to continue having this steady drip of negative press, its not journalism. There are far bigger issues to deal with and these “stories” are divisive and ultimately dangerous especially when given any semblance of legitimacy by the national press. We healthcare professionals understand this danger which is why we will never give in. So please roll up your sleeves and do what you were elected to do, solve the problems of our nation and don’t allow the NHS to fall apart under your watch.