Agenda and minutes

Health and Wellbeing Board - Wednesday, 17th January, 2024 2.00 p.m.

Venue: Karalius Suite, Halton Stadium, Widnes. View directions

Contact: Kim Butler on 0151 5117496 or e-mail 

No. Item




          The Minutes of the meeting held on 11 October 2023 having been circulated were signed as a correct record.



Research Ready Community Project pdf icon PDF 105 KB


          The Board received a report regarding the Research Ready Community Champion Power in Partnership Project (PIP) which was based in Runcorn. 


The Research Ready Community (RRC) Project commenced in Halton in June 2023 and employed six RRC Champions and one NIHR Research Engagement Officer.  The Champions were young adults and care leavers who were part of a National programme to help build better relationships with communities and increase equitable access to health research amongst under-represented groups.


The Board also received a short film which provided a snapshot of what the Champions had achieved so far. 


The Champions had identified six areas of health that had affected them the most:


·       Isolation and loneliness;

·       Diabetes and its complications;

·       Managing heart conditions;

·       Addiction (alcohol, drugs and gambling);

·       Depression, mental health and wellbeing; and

·       Sexual health support.


The young people had also made further developments by attending meetings with senior health professionals for the local NHS and shared their own experiences to help organisations to make the changes needed to improve their lives.


The report also outlined the background to the programme and the findings to the community research that had been carried out.


The Board discussed the information presented to them and the following comments were noted:


·       Local organisations needed to promote the services that were available;

·       How should this initiative be used to shape services and how will be make a difference?  A wider discussion was needed; and

·       Service providers were keen to speak to the Champions and have some further conversations. 


RESOLVED:  that the Board note the presentation. 


Health and Wellbeing Board Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 84 KB


          The Board received a report regarding the Health and Wellbeing Board Forward Plan. 


          Members were reminded that a review of the Board and its role that took place in 2022, where it was suggested that part 1 of the agenda included the statutory functions and accountabilities and part 2 of the agenda was thematic; led by the priorities of the Health and Wellbeing Strategy. 


          There were four themes and these would be aligned with the quarterly Board meetings.  The report contained an outline plan which would be updated accordingly when more details were available.  Lead officers would work with members of the Board to identify content for the agenda.  


          Members of the Board noted the contents of the report


          RESOLVED:  That the Board:


1)    note the content of the report; and

2)    endorse the use of a thematic Forward Plan.


Halton Family Hubs pdf icon PDF 57 KB


          The Board received a presentation and report which provided an update of the progress of Halton Family Hubs.


          In 2019, the Government’s Manifesto pledged to champion Family Hubs across England.  In December 2020, the Minister for Children outlined plans to create a National Centre for Excellence for Hubs, funded by the Department for Education (DfE).  This included a Best Start for Life Review which was a programme to ensure the best support during the first 1001 days of a baby’s life and maximise lifelong emotional and physical wellbeing. 


          In April 2022, the DfE and DHSC announced that Halton would be one of the 75 Local Authorities who would become a pilot area for the Family Hubs and Best Start to Life Scheme.  Since December 2022, Halton had been working hard to develop this model. 


          The Board was advised that Family Hubs were designed to support children and families by bringing together all the support families may need from pregnancy through to young people turning 19, or 25 if they had a disability.  They brought together early help and intervention delivered by a range of partners and organisations and services that could be delivered in various ways from different venues i.e. children’s centres, libraries, health centres, GP practices and many more.


          The presentation outlined the journey so far in the development of the model, its achievements and challenges over the past 12 months and the next steps for the future.


          The Chair provided some positive feedback she had received about an event organised by the service.


          RESOLVED:  That the Board noted the presentation.



Corporate Parenting pdf icon PDF 64 KB


          A report was presented to update the Board on the role it plays in supporting and delivering corporate parenting responsibilities. 


The Board also received a presentation which set out the corporate parenting principles, the role and responsibilities of a corporate parent and who the members were on the Corporate Parenting Board. 


Members were advised that the Corporate Parenting Strategy was shortly to be re-launched and invites would be sent out in due course. 


RESOLVED:  That the Board: 


1)    adopts the principles of the corporate parenting strategy and the defining of the seven key priorities, to support the improvement journey of Halton care experienced young people and care leavers;


2)    notes the senior management representation across Halton and affirm the corporate commitment to develop stronger partnership working to ensure the needs of care experienced young people and care leavers are galvanised and prioritised by all stakeholders, ensuring ‘our children are our future’; and


3)    notes that the cross-party members, senior managers and key stakeholders would meet bi-monthly, receive reports, including performance reports, undertaking strategic and thematic enquiry into specific elements of the strategy, and seek ways of resolving barriers to support the success of our people place and practice.



Inspection of SEND Local Area Partnership pdf icon PDF 70 KB


The Board received a presentation from the Operational Director, Education, Inclusion and Provision, which provided an update on the recent Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Local Area Partnership Ofsted Inspection. 


          The presentation described the membership of the Local Area Partnership and who they were.  Under the umbrella of One Halton, the Council, community and NHS organisations work together for the benefit of children and young people living in Halton.  It outlined the responsibilities and priorities of the partnership. 


The presentation also outlined the partnership’s learning from the process; the outcome of the inspection was embargoed until the publication of the final Ofsted report. The report would share the responsibilities of the Local Area Partnership and help to inform the Board of priorities which would inform strategic planning and support the partnership to deliver the right support at the right time, in the right way, for children and young people with SEND.


Once the inspection report was published, the findings would be shared with all stakeholders.  The Strategy and priority plans for the SEND Local Area Partnership would be shared and steps would be taken to progress as a partnership on the collective vision for children and young people with SEND in Halton.


RESOLVED:  That the report and presentation be noted.



Update on the Transition Team pdf icon PDF 68 KB

Additional documents:


          The Board received a report which provided an overview on the Transition Team.  The Transition Team was established in 2017 with a remit to work with young people with severe learning disabilities (SLD) and physical and sensory disabilities (PSD) to ensure they had a smooth transition from children’s services to adult services.


          The Board also received a presentation from the lead Occupational Therapist, which described a piece of research that had been undertaken to identify some of the issues surrounding the delays in provision of disabled paediatric equipment in Halton and the impact this had on families.


          The research made a number of recommendations which were noted as follows:


·       Review how the process of service provision could be streamlined;

·       Compile a policy for the supply of all equipment for disabled children encompassing acceptable timescales in all areas of provision; and

·       Purchase a core stock to reduce early intervention time after initial assessment.


It was also noted that the budget for this service area was currently £25,000, however, in order to purchase the required specialised bespoke equipment, this budget would require a substantial increase.


RESOLVED:  That the Board note the report.


Citizens Advice Halton - Child Poverty Update pdf icon PDF 57 KB

Additional documents:


          The Board considered a report on how the rising rate of the National Living Wage (NLW) in April 2024 and the rising cost of school uniforms could impact on child poverty levels in Halton. 


          The report highlighted some of the issues faced by local families and set out some steps which local partners could take to help reduce the financial burden faced by families with young children in schools. 


          The report also described the negative impact of the rising NLW and the potential implications which included:


·       Low income working households will not see the full value of a higher NLW;

·       Few parents will be exempt from the benefits cap;

·       Families would not be eligible for free school meals;

·       There would be implications for Universal Credit conditions; and

·       Self-employed parents may lose benefit income.


The report outlined a number of recommendations relating to the rising NLW and cost of school uniforms.


The Board noted and discussed the report and suggested that further work needed to be done to revisit interventions and maximise income.


RESOLVED:  That the report be received and the Board determines a way forward. 




The Chair expressed thanks to Kath Parker, Chair of Healthwatch Halton who had now retired from the role.  Kath had been a member of the Board for many years and her support had been invaluable.  The Chair also welcomed Lydia Hughes who had taken over the role on an interim basis.