Agenda and minutes

Gateshead Health and Wellbeing Board - Friday, 6th March, 2020 9.00 am

Venue: Whickham Room - Civic Centre. View directions

Contact: Melvyn Mallam-Churchill, Tel: 0191 433 2149, Email: 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Gary Haley, Mark Adams, Sir Paul Ennals and Bill Westwood.


The Chair welcomed Councillor Oliphant to the Board as the new Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing in Gateshead.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 220 KB

Additional documents:


The minutes of the last meeting were reviewed. A summary of the Action List was also provided which highlighted that an update report on the Childhood Immunisations Programme 2020/21 would come back to the Board in the summer.



(i)            The Board approved the minutes of the last meeting and noted the update from the Action List.



Declarations of Interest

Members of the Board to declare an interest in any particular agenda item.



(i)            There were no declarations of interest.



Minimum Unit Pricing - Colin Shevills pdf icon PDF 162 KB


The Board received a report and presentation to seek views on how the introduction of alcohol minimum unit pricing can be supported.


It was reported that the Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP) sets a floor price for a unit of alcohol; it was also noted that this targets the cheapest alcohol most commonly consumed by the heaviest drinkers.


The Board were provided with an overview of key findings from MUP research which would indicate that in Gateshead:


·         174 deaths would be prevented over the next 20 years

·         Alcohol related hospital admissions would reduce (thus reducing pressures on local NHS services)

·         Crime rates would reduce due to fewer thefts, robberies, criminal damage and violence

·         Areas of deprivation would benefit the most which will help reduce health inequalities

It was highlighted that there is no single solution to tackling alcohol related harm but that all independent evidence shows that the removal of the cheapest, strongest alcohol would have the greatest impact. It was further stated that following the introduction of MUP in Scotland, three litres of strong cider now costs no less than £11.25, the same bottle would currently cost £3.50 in England.


The Board were advised that the Health and Wellbeing Boards of South Tyneside and Sunderland have agreed to write to Central Government in support of the introduction of MUP; it was also stated that a number of MP’s have shown their support to the cause.


A comment was made stating that MUP was a targeted measure for the highest risk drinkers. It was also noted that the benefits to the NHS and the criminal justice system cannot be ignored.


A suggestion was made that Gateshead’s communications team could develop a campaign to target local traders as well as schools to increase awareness on the benefits of MUP. It was also asked whether there was evidence to suggest that heavy drinkers moved on to use other substances when MUP is introduced; it was stated that there is anecdotal evidence to suggest this does not happen.


The Board were advised that research is underway to look at implementing MUP at a local level using the Sustainable Communities Act; it was acknowledged that some counties such as the North West and Yorkshire are not prepared to explore this route yet.


Concern was noted that should MUP be introduced there would be a black market developed for cheap alcohol. It was acknowledged that this was a possibility but that research from Canada shows that this activity is minimal when compared to the overall impact on local rates of criminality.


A comment was made that alcohol abuse has a huge impact on the lives of individuals and families across Gateshead. It was also highlighted that this abuse contributes to the rising cost of social care. It was further stated that alcohol abuse during pregnancy is resulting in higher rates of children being born with foetal alcohol related conditions.



(i)            The Board agreed to write to the Secretary of State to support the introduction of  ...  view the full minutes text for item HW177


Health & Wellbeing Strategy - Alice Wiseman pdf icon PDF 227 KB

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The Board received a report for endorsement of the new Health and Wellbeing Strategy for Gateshead, ‘Good jobs, homes, health and friends’. It was highlighted that the strategy has been approved by Cabinet.


The Board were advised that the current version of the strategy does not feature the logo of CNTW as permission had not been secured to use it. It was also highlighted that the strategy is intended to be a ‘working document’ featuring market testing conducted by Healthwatch. The Board were also advised that a report on the market testing will be presented at the next Board meeting.


It was noted from the report that the focus of the new strategy is based upon the policy objectives from the Marmot framework “Fair Society, Healthy Lives” which focuses on health inequalities. It was further noted that the strategy builds upon the issues identified from the 2017 DPH annual report.


The Board were advised that the new strategy has six policy objectives which were outlined within the report. It was stated that the highest priority from the strategy is “Give every child the best start in life”.


A comment was made stating that the buy in from the community and voluntary sector will be key to the success of the strategy’s aims; it was further noted that the primary care sector have an important role to play.


The Board agreed that the strategy was strong and should be promoted far and wide. The relationship with Professor Marmot was also acknowledged as being a key factor in the strength of the strategy.



(i)            The Board endorsed the new Health and Wellbeing Strategy.


Integrated Care Partnership (ICP) Suicide Prevention Developments - Iain Miller pdf icon PDF 530 KB

Additional documents:


The Board received a report providing an update on the Public Mental Health approach to Suicide Prevention planning across Northumberland Tyne and Wear and the benefits to Gateshead.


From the report it was noted that suicide prevention policy has expanded considerably in the UK as concerns around suicide rates have intensified. It was also highlighted that suicide is the leading cause of death among young people aged 20-34 in the UK, with figures considerably higher in men.


A summary of postvention support was provided from the report which advised that If U Care Share have been commissioned across Northumberland, Tyne and Wear to provide bereavement support to those bereaved by suicide. From the report it was further noted that South Tyneside Public Health have led a tendering process for a sub-regional Mental Health Training Hub; the Board were advised that the hub should be available by early April 2020.


Appended to the report for information was the suicide age-standardisation rate for persons 15+ years per 100,000 (3-year average) Gateshead V’s National and Regional data.


A comment was made that suicide rates in Gateshead are reported to be lower due to the coroner’s reluctance to log deaths as suicide; it was further stated that the coroner will instead provide a wider interpretation of the cause of death such as the impact of austerity.


Discussions took place on the issue of self-harm in Gateshead which highlighted the importance of support from the community and voluntary sector.



(i)            The Board agreed the recommendations from the report.

(ii)           The Board agreed to receive an update on the matter in 6 months.



Gateshead Health & Care System Update - All


Dr Mark Dornan advised the Board that progress is continuing across all priority areas including best start in life and frailty.


The Board were also advised that funding has been secured to support carers which includes the commencement of a ‘Hospice at Home’ scheme and rapid response integration.


The Coronavirus was highlighted, the Board noted that there are procedures in place across the whole system should the issue escalate. Alice Wiseman also reminded the Board that the Gateshead Pandemic Flu Plan has identified priority services to be maintained in the event of a pandemic. It was also highlighted that strong support procedures are in place across Gateshead to support the most vulnerable in society with partnership working across the system including the voluntary sector.


The Board were also reminded that it is Work Social Work Day on 17 March 2020.



(i)            The Board noted the updates.



Updates from Board Members



(i)            There were no further updates to note.





(i)            There was no other business to note.