Public health and social care is provided across Aberdeen City by NHS Grampian (NHSG), Aberdeen City Council (ACC) and the Aberdeen Health and Social Care Partnership (ACHSCP). This latter body was established in 2016 by NHSG and ACC to provide integrated health and social care and has delegated responsibility for a range of local services, including most services provided outside a hospital setting but excluding children’s services.
There are two General Practitioner groups within the CBM area, the Cults Medical Group and the Camphill Medical Practice, but a number of residents are registered with practices outside the CBM area, particularly with the Culter Medical Practice and the Great Western Practice. There are two pharmacists and two dental practices located in Cults. A special factor in the provision of health and social care is the high proportion of retired people (see sections 1 and 11). There are five nursing/care homes and a range of sheltered accommodation for the elderly.
Wellbeing and Support by the Community
Health and social care provision by the by statutory bodies is limited by finance available from taxes and does not, and is unlikely to, meet all the needs of the population, particularly the elderly. Demographic changes, rising expectations and medical advances will all add to the pressure. Churches, voluntary bodies and individuals are all active in the CBM area in variety of provision for the elderly – clubs, lunches, short term respite care and befriending. These services are often more effective than if they were provided by the statutory bodies as they are provided in a spirit of neighbourliness and community.
The current community engagement set up will no longer provide direct engagement between local ACHSCP professionals and community representatives. Local health and social care matters will need to be included in the overall South Locality Plan co-produced by the (Community) Locality Empowerment Group and ACC and ACHSCP Engagement officers. Any local HSC issues will have to be conveyed to ACHSCP management via this Plan and through the recently introduced community representation in the Strategic Planning Group of that organisation.
Current Key Issues
1. GP Practices. All GP practices nationally are under pressure – financially and due to GP recruitment issues. The large population of elderly people adds to the pressure. The CC has a regular dialogue with the Cults Medical Group exchanging information on patient views and practice operations.
2. ACHSCP. In the past the CC has been active in discussions with ACHSCP to ensure management is aware of current local issues. One issue is the future provision of GP services with the increase in housing (Countesswells, Oldfold and Friarsfield) and the proposed development of more accommodation for the elderly. The recent change of structure of the Partnership organisation and the consequent interruption of direct engagement are of great concern as these could be detrimental to effective local influence.
3. Social Care. The large elderly population means that there is a high demand for social care input.
4. Defibrillators. The availability of life-saving defibrillators and their location is not generally known by residents and the community council has developed plans to post information at local bus stops and to improve their number with 24/7 accessibility.
Community Council Objectives
To ensure that the views of the community are fully taken into account in all health and social care issues particularly in relation to new housing developments and other proposals, plans and changes affecting the local community.
1. To stay involved positively in the changed community engagement structure.
2. To provide firm local health and social care input in the South Locality Plan.
3. To obtain a seat on the ACHSCP Strategic Planning Group to ensure that particular issues of the CBM community receive the appropriate priority and attention of the ACHSCP professionals.
4. To investigate the best way of determine the views of the community – in particularly vulnerable groups and those with particular needs.
5. To undertake a scoping exercise to what local provision there is for the elderly, including those who have carers, covering clubs, coffee mornings, luncheons, short term (even a few hours) respite help, befriending.
6. To secure funding for the defibrillator projects.
Views are specifically invited on the following:
- Are there gaps in local health and social care provision?
- The CC is not able to deal with individual complaints, but will always consider investigating any general issues that may arise.
- Suggestions are welcome as to how the CC can ensure it is aware of local needs (see 3 under Proposed Action above)
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