Agenda item

Health and Wellbeing Board Annual Report

Councillor Roche (Chair) and Ben Anderson, Director of Public Health, to present


The Chair and Ben Anderson, Director of Public Health, presented the 2020/21 Annual Report “A Healthier Rotherham by 2025” with the aim of the following powerpoint presentation:-


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Board had continued to meet virtually, and as the report showed, it had achieved much over the past year such as its work on loneliness, encouraging better physical health and activities, supporting young people’s mental health, setting up an unpaid carers group that was supporting the refresh of the Carers Strategy and placing an increasing emphasis on the wider determinants of health.


There was still a lot more work to be done on tackling health inequalities, including inequalities between Rotherham’s least and most deprived communities. The Board had committed that this would be its main area of focus, to ensure that the health of the most vulnerable was improving the fastest. In the coming year, The Board would need to refresh its priorities, taking into account the impact of the pandemic, as well as the changes that would be brought in through the Health and Care Bill.


As well as partners working closely together on the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, there has also been significant progress made over the past year to support delivery of the Health and Wellbeing Strategy:-


-        Engaging with the Local Maternity System on the Maternity Transformation Plan


-        Implementation of the Mental Health Trailblazer in schools ‘With Me in Mind’


-        Delivery of the Suicide Prevention and Self-Harm Reduction Action Plan, including promoting information around debt advice and signposting to Rotherhive website, sharing information for people at risk of relationship breakdown, helping carers and following up missed appointments


-        Pooling knowledge, expertise and resources across the partnership with regards to the mental health and wellbeing of our workforce


-        Launching the Moving Rotherham campaign to encourage local people to be more physically active


-        Establishing an unpaid carers group to ensure carers had the support they needed throughout the pandemic. This group has also been closely involved in the co-production of the Carers Strategy


-        Tackling loneliness and social isolation during COVID-19, including reaching out to at-risk groups, raising awareness via social media and redeveloping the MECC training


-        An estimated 400,000 people engaged in the Rotherham Together programme, which was developed to respond and support recovery from COVID-19. The programme focussed on 3 key themes: Joy, Gratitude and Hope and provided innovative and COVID-secure ways to foster connectedness


-        Working with the other Boards across the Rotherham Together Partnership to deliver the safeguarding protocol, including coming together to discuss mental health as a cross-cutting issue


-        Maintaining a link between the Health and Wellbeing Board and the Local Outbreak Engagement Board


What are we worried about?

-        There were large gaps in life expectancy and healthy life expectancy both within the Borough and compared with the national average. Moreover, the coronavirus pandemic had exacerbated existing health inequalities, with the most disadvantaged communities being hit the hardest


-        The leading causes of death in Rotherham included ischaemic heart disease (IHD), stroke, lung cancer, COPD and Alzheimer’s / dementia


-        Mental Health and wellbeing


What will the Board do next:-

-        The current priorities and action plan ran until June, 2021.  The next step would be to engage with Board members to update the Board’s priorities and the action plan which underpinned the Strategy


-        Embed a prevention-led systems approach across the Place


-        Work with the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw ICS to shape the future arrangements


-        Continue to monitor the longer-term impacts of the pandemic on our communities


-        Focus on reducing health inequalities between our most and least deprived communities.


The Challenges

-        Health inequalities between our most and least deprived communities and between Rotherham and the national average


-        Mental health and wellbeing remained a concern


-        The leading causes of death in Rotherham were associated with preventable risk factors


-        The pandemic would continue to impact on local people’s lives in the long term


Forward Look

-        Implementation of the Health and Social Care White Paper – implications for our system and our partnership

-        Supporting our communities through Covid recovery

-        Board members’ feedback in the annual review survey:

Further prioritisation – not trying to do everything

Doing more to communicate with Rotherham people about our work

Involving partners engaged with the wider determinants

Increasing our focus on health inequalities


Discussion ensued with the following issues raised:-


·        The 4 aims worked well but what sat under them needed to be reviewed in light of the Covid response-recovery and strengthen prevention of health inequalities

·        Tobacco needed to be included

·        Economic impact of Covid particularly as furlough came to an end in September as well as the impact on mental health

·        The 4 Strategy Aim leads would be requested to discuss with the project leads how the action plan may be changed/the Strategy developed

·        Older people had really suffered during the pandemic and an increase in referrals for dementia expected to be seen

·        Establish whether the appropriate services were commissioned and how the priorities fitted under the aims

·        TRFT’s focus would be to not widen the health inequality gap and work with Public Health

·        Access to Primary Care was becoming an issue and striking a balance between face-to-face appointments with a GP and non face-to-face

·        Mental Health Services would need to find a different way of thinking about their services and understanding the impact of long Covid

·        Voluntary Action Rotherham had a big role to play in prevention and early intervention and the need to understand where resources went/what worked well and what did not

·        The need to embed into the Strategy the work currently being undertaken on social value and getting the best value for the residents of Rotherham


Resolved:-  (1)  That the report be noted.


(2)  That the current Strategy be circulated to all Board members and that Aim sponsors review the appropriateness of their Aims.

ACTION:-  Becky Woolley

Supporting documents: