Agenda item

Better Lives Programme

That the Scrutiny Commission consider:


1)      How to engage a diverse range of citizens in the development and design of the next phase of the Better Lives Programme;

2)      How Members could help communicate the key messages around the Programme’s direction of travel to citizens.


Officer Presenting Report : Terry Dafter


Cllr Helen Holland thanked all those who took part in the Social Care Task Group, which was helpful for policy development, enabling cross party support.

Terry Dafter (Director of Care and Support – Adults, Bristol City Council) delivered a presentation


The following are some of the key discussion points:

          New system will be more stable and resilient – although it is not a quick solution.

          Social care is a challenge nationally .  There is the demand of an aging population and budget pressures.

          Adult Care has very working relationship with housing colleagues. There is a need to work more closely with Children’s services.

          We use a person centred approach, which asks, not ‘what’s the matter with you’, but ‘what matters to you?’ This is a person centred approach.

          Looking to invest in technology, including voice activation, enabling people to have more control in their home.

          The Ethical Care Charter is to be signed in the new year.  (A set of commitments that Councils make which fix minimum standards that will protect the dignity and quality of life for those people and the workers who care for them)

A Member asked about joint commissioning with health service.

Officer response:

          Our current progress on joint commissioning with health is limited but we are now looking to do more around mental health and learning disability services.


A Member asked what approaches are available for integrating care and health.

Officer response:

          There are various models for integrating care and health: the two principal ones are either based around and led by an acute hospital, or by collaboration between community providers in an alliance arrangement.

          The preferred arrangement is the community approach.


A Member asked if the Council can use DFG (Disabled Facilities Grants) in a more constructive way.

Officer response:

          We are looking to make sure we maximise our use of DFG.

          There is a significant amount of this grant available and we want to use it in ways that encourage greater use of accommodation in the community, either through purchasing houses or upgrading existing stock.


A Member asked why the cost of new nursing care for age group 65+ has reduced substantially from the beginning of 2018.

Officer response:

          This may reflect a higher demand in the winter months     

A Member commented on the work force figures, showing a substantial reduction in turnover and average working days lost, stating that to achieve these figures is excellent and the service should be commended for this.  Officer stated all staff are responsible and take credit.

The Council is looking at refurbishment of existing sheltered housing and childrens homes.  The dialogue with housing colleagues has  just started, including scoping out what is required, and what options and innovation are available including refurbishment, off site manufacture, new build, and assistive technology.

Member asked whether the Council is liaising with GPs.

Officer response:

          GPs are key.  Achieving a common approach with GPs is a challenge.  Need to try and ensure the message to GPs is this isn’t a burden but will make life easier.

A Member asked whether there are robust systems in place to ensure quality does not reduce. 

Officer response: 

          Sharing good practice with colleagues from Manchester.  Bristol is full of voluntary groups – but all are not engaged at the moment, so we need to think about how we engage. 

The Chair thanked Officer, stating that the information provides confidence that the service is not silo working; and is proactively looking for solutions.


ACTION:  Officer to circulate to Commission Members details of  ling around the Better Lives Programme

Supporting documents: