Agenda item

Agenda item


To consider a report (copy enclosed) from the Interim Head of Community Support Services, on the Regional Market Stability Report based on the Population Needs Assessment as per the requirements of the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014.

11:30am – 12:00pm


The Lead Member for Health and Social Care introduced the report (previously circulated). The Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014 introduced a new duty on local authorities and health boards to develop a joint assessment of the sufficiency and sustainability of the social care market. The Market Stability Report had been produced by the North Wales Regional Partnership Board in line with the Code of Practice (Welsh Government, 2021a). It was the first Market Stability Report to be produced, informed by the North Wales Population Needs Assessment 2022.


The report assessed the sufficiency of care and support in meeting the needs and demand for social care as well as the stability of the market.


The Interim Head of Service, Business Support Services referred to the key messages in relation to adult social care for Denbighshire, a slight reduction in overall capacity of the care home sector in Denbighshire. The capacity that was available (basic residential care) did not meet current or future needs of clients which was for more complex needs – Elderly Mentally Infirm (EMI) residential and nursing care.


Changing operations from existing residential homes into EMI compatible homes was not an easy conversion. The buildings were often unsuitable and fees did not always cover the cost to the provider.


Advancements in health care and medicine had a significant impact on social care requirements. People with learning difficulties were moving through from children’s services to adults’ services with complex packages of care that would be required for life.


The desire for clients to remain independent and stay in their own homes had increased the demand for domiciliary care. The challenges around recruitment and retention in the domiciliary field further exacerbated difficulty in provision of cover in that area.


Respite care for people with complex health conditions – stroke, acquired brain injury etc. – was in limited supply and would be reviewed under future commissioning exercises.


The Head of Children Services advised that the report highlighted issues that were already known to Denbighshire. Particularly the lack of local, short term foster placements available, especially for children with complex needs, both in-house and in the independent sector. Those particular placements were targeted to be the focus of commissioning going forward.


Whilst there were residential placements available in Denbighshire, they tended to be for specialist and specific criteria. For more general behaviour placements these were having to be sourced further afield. Future commissioning would be focused on Bwthyn y Ddôl a residential assessment unit shared with Conwy and BCUHB.


Future focus areas would be:

·         Commissioning intent on promoting fostering close to home and

·         Implementation of an action plan over the next 12-18 months for the in-house team. Including review core support given to carers.


Responding to members’ questions officers advised:


·         There was a shortage of social care staff and a recruitment and retention crisis (at all levels) throughout the UK.

·         Social care and foster care recruitment was being publicised / promoted at every opportunity e.g. backgrounds at virtual meetings, sides of fleet vehicles, recruitment fayres etc.

·         A special board had been established to explore various methods of improving recruitment and retention of staff in social care.  Amongst the areas being explored were terms and conditions.  However, it was acknowledged that attempting to address recruitment and retention of social care staff via terms and conditions would impact on roles throughout the council.

·         Whilst the extra care housing in the north of the county were owned by registered social landlords the care provided to residents was undertaken by Denbighshire County Council staff.

·         The demand for extra care housing was being managed. If residential care home providers wanted to change their operations Denbighshire was willing to have that conversation.

·         Discussion was underway as a region to implement a consortia approach the local authority would be the lead body for an apprenticeship scheme with placements sourced in different settings with both in-house care and independent providers.

·         From a market stability perspective, the key objectives for each Service over the next 12 months would be:

o   to attain stability in domiciliary care, looking at micro-enterprise and rural providers and

o   Implementing fostering friendly policies within Denbighshire and preparing for the launch of Bwthyn y Ddôl residential assessment unit.


The Committee, having considered the report and the answers given to members’ questions:




(i)   to recommend the approval of the North Wales Market Stability Report 2022 (Appendix 1); and

(ii)   to confirm that the Committee, as part of its consideration, had read, understood and taken account of the Equalities Impact Assessment (Appendix 2).


Supporting documents: