Agenda and minutes

Adult Social Care and Services Scrutiny Panel - Wednesday 11th November, 2020 10.30 am

Venue: Virtual

Contact: Susie Blood 

No. Item


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.


There were no declarations of interest received at this point in the meeting.


Minutes- Adult Social Care and Services Scrutiny Panel - 14 September 2020


The minutes of the Adult Social Care and Services Scrutiny Panel meeting held on 14 September 2020 were submitted and approved as a correct record.



Ageing Better Middlesbrough (ABM) - Update and Future/Legacy Planning

Michelle Dawson, ABM's Programme Manager will be in attendance at the meeting to provide an update regarding work undertaken to date, impact of Covid 19, together with plans for the future


The Chair welcome Michelle Dawson, Manager of Aging Better Middlesbrough to provide an update regarding work undertaken to date, impact of Covid 19, together with plans for the future.

The Manager outlined that she worked for Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind and had worked there for the past 10 years. Aging Better Middlesbrough (ABM) was originally a 6 year funded programme of £6million over 6 years (April 2015- March 2021) to reduce loneliness and isolation for older people. The programme is a test and learn project co-designed with older people. The project gained evidence as at the time there was very little information about what worked. The project has gathered loads of Loads and loads of learning about loneliness, older people, communities, commissioning and partnerships, they have worked with thousands of older people.

The Panel learnt that the ABM website had a dedicated learning page, which contains information, not only from Middlesbrough but also from the 7 ABM projects across the Country to understand what works to reduce loneliness. Middlesbrough speciality, is around working with older people with complexity, mental health and chronic loneliness. The Manager outlined that chronic loneliness was different to transitional loneliness e.g. an impact from Covid, whereby older people find themselves lonely in a transition of time.

Over the past 5 years, ABM has delivered a whole host of projects with older people; which has included long term intervention, asset based development, peer and befriending projects , projects within the BME community, digital support for older people, , projects with older woman from Pakistan, projects with asylum seekers and refugees, small grants projects and projects around dance and exercise. The Manager outlined that most projects which you could think of to engage with older people and reduce loneliness and isolation have been tried.

In March 2020 at the start of the Covid- 19 pandemic, like most, the way working for ABM had to change. The Director of Adult Social Care and Health Integration contacted the Manager due to the number of older people coming through Help BORO and the shielding HUB.

In response to a request from the council, Middlebrough and Stockton Mind became a ‘destination’ point for people who were lonely or needed emotional support.
They undertook the following projects:
• Ageing Better formed a telephone support project for older people, bringing together staff from four different organisations. ABM also telephoned over 600 older people who they were in regular contact to check on their well being and to engage them in supplementary telephone support where they had additional need.
• ABM delivered wellbeing packs, activity packs to older people.
• They provided digital support and bought digital devices and data for older people to enable older people to use their devises and make the most of digital technology. They were also linked to a digital befriender.
• Middlesbrough and Stockton MIND carry out Social Prescribing, however ABM launched social prescribing on 1 April 2020 to support GP's who needed additional support to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20/20


Reducing Loneliness and/ or social isolation in Later life- an update pdf icon PDF 610 KB

n respect of the Adult Social Care and Services Scrutiny Panel's 2018 review of Reducing Loneliness and/ or social isolation in Later life- to consider an update from the Director of Adult Social Care and Health Integration on the progress made with the implementation of the agreed recommendations/actions.

The Panel has also requested an update in relation to how Covid-19 has impacted on social isolation and steps being taken to address this.

Additional documents:


In 2018, the Panel undertook a review into Reducing Loneliness and/ or social isolation in Later life. Part of the evidence, the Panel heard from Michelle Dawson, Manager of Aging Better Middlesbrough who support older people in this field. The Panel had received an updated action plan detailing updates on the recommendations and also asked for information relating to supporting older people curing Covid-19

Covid recovery
In terms of covid recovery, the Director outlined the work that TRUV are currently undertaking of how we respond to the mental health issues over the next 5 years. Covid 19 will have touched many peoples' lives through either personal or personal capacity.

The Director outlined that they have been the impact of Covid 19 in terms of service users restriction of mobility, difficult to socialise with family and friends, ability to access services e.g. day care and difficulty of visiting loved ones in care homes.

It outlined as the Country enter the second lock down, most of the day care centres have remained open in a covid safe way. In terms of visiting care homes, there is a balance of Individual human rights and the duty to protect the collective and this will always be a fought decision to take.
The Director stated that the Director of Public Health and the Director of Social Care and Health Integration have to make a decision on visiting due to the number of infection rates in the region and it was decided to restrict visiting to essential only with the caveat of end of life.
The Panel learnt that the Social infection, protection and control grant fund was introduced to help care homes with the infection of Covid. In Middlesbrough, some of this money was put into a grant fund whereby care homes could bid for money to introduce visiting pods, or additional outdoor hand washing and it hoped that this would facilitate visiting. However with the new lockdown, the guidance issued means some of the pods do not meet the requirements, however the Council is working on a home by home basis to see if they can facilitate this, however saving lives in paramount and safety will always be put first.

The ABM Manager also added that in terms of isolation and loneliness all aspects are linked and need to be interlinked e.g. not being able to see their friends, family, catching covid and we shouldn't talk about one without the other.

A Board member queried whether there was support in place for home workers or are experiencing isolation. In response, the Manager advised that ABM hadn't done any specific work, as they generally work with those who have complex needs and who have been out of work for long periods and never been in steady work. But she hopes that organisations would offer services to support their workers during this period.

In terms of the recommendations, a panel member raised that the briefing session on loneliness and isolation should be repeated to ensure  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20/21


Chair's OSB Update


No update received.


Any other urgent items which in the opinion of the Chair, may be considered.