Successful work to improve the health and wellbeing of people in County Durham will be outlined to councillors this week.
Durham County Council’s Cabinet will consider the latest annual report from the Health and Wellbeing Board (HWB) when it meets on Wednesday (September 12).
The report gives an overview of work the board has carried out over the last 12 months, along with projects earmarked for the future.
Key achievements are also outlined, including the creation of the County Durham Integrated Care Board to lead on work towards the Government’s target of creating a fully integrated health and social care service by 2020.
Teams Around Patients (TAPs) are already operational across Durham, Dales, Easington and Sedgefield (DDES) and North Durham (ND) Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) areas. These multi-agency teams work to reduce avoidable hospital admissions and permanent admissions to care homes, reduce delays in the transfer of care, and improve the health and wellbeing of older people and those with long term conditions.
Other achievements include:
• The continued success of the Wellbeing for Life service which runs a 12 week programme to help people improve their wellbeing, become more active and achieve and maintain a healthy weight
• Oral health improvements, such as the introduction of tooth brushing schemes in nurseries in deprived communities as part of the County Durham Oral Health Strategy
• The County Durham Joint Commissioning Plan 2017-2018 Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) has been approved. The HWB has also adopted principles set out in the SEND Promise, a charter for and written by young people with special educational needs
• The Healthy Weight Alliance has continued its work to halt the rise of obesity across the county by 2022. Work is underway to deliver the Sugar Smart campaign, which encourages organisations to help communities reduce their sugar consumption
• Durham has been chosen by the Local Government Association to pilot a project exploring how to improve the scale and pace of mental health prevention and early intervention initiatives
• The HWB has agreed the recommendations of the County Durham Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment 2018-21, which looks at the current provision of pharmacy services.
The County Durham HWB was set up in April 2013. It includes representatives from the council, CCGs, Healthwatch, NHS foundation trusts, County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service and the Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner.
Cllr Lucy Hovvels MBE, Cabinet member for adult and health services at Durham County Council and chair of the HWB, said: “It’s great to see the work of the HWB is being recognised. We will continue to build on our success to improve health and wellbeing and reduce inequalities across the county.”
Vice chair Dr Stewart Findlay, chief clinical officer at DDES CCG, said: “This report highlights the joint working arrangements between partners across Durham and demonstrates how they are driving up the quality of care our population can expect.
“I would particularly like to comment on the development of TAPs which wrap primary, community and social care around small populations of between 30,000 and 50,000 people. This is the driving force behind the integration of health and social care at a very local level.”
Cabinet will be asked to note the achievements and future work detailed in the report, which can be found at www.countydurhampartnership.co.uk/article/8546/Documents