Pembrokeshire council scrutiny committee review demand management for social services

MANAGING demand for social services is a “complex issue” which can change regularly with the council’s response required to meet the needs of those above certain thresholds.

Head of adult care and housing Jason Bennett said demand management was complex as the service dealt with people and “people by nature” had varying and fluctuating needs.

A focus on prevention has continued with the work of the community hub coordination centre, set up at the start of the pandemic, to maintain the “really valuable” community connection, he added at Thursday’s (November 5) social care overview and scrutiny committee.

In children’s’ services a looked after children reduction strategy in light of increase numbers was not about failure but doing more earlier intervention to prevent and remove young people local authority care, the man in charge, Darren Mutter, said in response to questions from Cllr Vic Dennis.

“I don’t think we are failing because the children in care are the right ones, we don’t have children in care that don’t need to be, we are succeeding in protecting children in Pembrokeshire,” added Mr Mutter.

He said that the reduction strategy would improve early intervention work to prevent children being taken into care and help them go home or to independent living sooner.

Cabinet member for social services Cllr Tessa Hodgson said that the “scope and scale” of the reports represent to the committee have members a “real flavour of the huge amount of work going on in Pembrokeshire.”

The reports also outlined efficiency programmes, ways of working differently including minor adaptations, partnership working and regional support for children with complex needs.

Increases in demand for services such as foodbanks and those experiencing loneliness are monitored, particularly in the recent period of Covid-19, it adds, with the Community Hub an important factor in people’s support.

An introduction to Delta CONNECT was included in the reports pack, highlighting a wrap-around support service to help keep people livening independently for longer.

The scheme is a partnership with neighbouring authorities, health board and West Wales Care Partnership, for more details visit deltawellbeing.org.uk

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