Agenda and draft minutes

Adults and Safer City Scrutiny Panel - Monday, 8th March, 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Microsoft Teams Meeting

Contact: Earl Piggott Smith  01902 551251 email:


No. Item


Welcome and Introductions

[The Chair to welcome everyone to the meeting. The Scrutiny Officer will then read out a list of those invited to the meeting to confirm who is in attendance.]



Cllr Val Evans, Chair, welcomed everyone to the virtual meeting and advised it was being live streamed to the press and public. A recording of the meeting would be available for viewing on the Council’s website at a future date.


Meeting procedures to be followed

[The Chair will explain how the meeting will proceed, how questions are to be asked and any matters of meeting etiquette.]



Cllr Evans explained the protocol to be followed during the meeting for asking questions and reminded everyone that microphones should be muted and cameras off, unless they have been invited to speak. Earl Piggott-Smith, Scrutiny Officer, confirmed the list of people in attendance.




Apologies were received from the following members of the panel:


·         Cllr Olivia Birch

·         Cllr Rupinderjit Kaur


Declarations of Interest


There were no declarations of interest recorded. Cllr Anwen Muston added that a relative is receiving care support.


Care and Support Provider Fee Review report - pre-decision (report to follow) pdf icon PDF 766 KB

This item is being considered as pre-decision scrutiny and will therefore not be available to call-in once a decision is made by the Executive.


[Alicia Woods, Lead Commissioner,to present report]


Alicia Wood, Lead Commissioner, introduced the presentation to the panel on proposed changes to care fees for 2021/22 for comment and consideration.

The Lead Commissioner advised the panel that the main report will be presented to Cabinet Resources Panel meeting on 17 March 2021 for approval of the proposed changes to the fees for the care sector commissioned externally within Wolverhampton.

The Lead Commissioner advised the panel that the Council has a duty to ensure that the care needs of residents in Wolverhampton are met.

In the past all care provision would have been provided by Council but this changed following a change to legislation which introduced a commercial market. There is still some in-house Council provision such as Bradley Resource Centre and also Earnest Bold respite and day care and Duke Street bungalows, long term residential for under 65’s, but these services only meet a very small percentage of the care needs of people in Wolverhampton. The rest of the provision is delivered by externally commissioned care service providers.

The service annually reviews the sufficiency of externally commissioned care services and whether the current fees will enable provision of care and for the Council to purchase them to meet the care needs of residents in Wolverhampton.

The fee review process considers how the Council has been able to meet care needs of residents, whether there have been any issues with actually purchasing care needed at the rates currently set and the fee levels to be set for the following year. The Lead Commissioner advised the panel of the factors that would be considered when setting the level of fees for externally commissioned care services, for example, changes in national living wage and inflation.

The Council budget includes a forecast for fees to be increased, to cover any increases in costs to providers such as increases in the National Living Wage or inflation.

During COVID-19 the government has provided grant funds (called the Infection Prevention Control Fund) and this should cover the majority of additional cost pressures to social care providers due to COVID-19. There may some future unknown costs due to the impact of COVID-19 on the care sector that have not already been met.

The Lead Commissioner gave an overview of the role of the service in supporting the care sector during the pandemic such as the provision of advice from Public Heath England, Wolverhampton CCG, the local NHS Trust (Royal Wolverhampton Hospital) and the Council’s Commissioning Team, Quality Assurance and Compliance Team and Social Work Teams. These partners meet twice weekly to consider the needs of care providers to look at their needs (in addition to arranging special one-off meetings to support providers in response to an outbreak of COVID-19). There is also a fortnightly Q&A and information sharing session open to all care providers.

The service also does a daily provider survey which monitors any issues raised by care managers, for example, getting sufficient PPE and also how they can access funding, for example COVID-19  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.