Issue - meetings

Procurement of Independent Living Care and Support Provision

Meeting: 16/11/2023 - Executive (Item 534)

534 Procurement of Independent Living Care and Support Provision pdf icon PDF 502 KB






That the Executive:


a)      Approved the procurement of Care & Support provision within Independent Living Schemes to ensure North Northamptonshire remains compliant in its statutory responsibilities.


b)      Delegated authority to the Executive Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing, in consultation with the Executive Director of Adults, Health Partnerships and Housing (DASS), to take any further decisions and/or actions required to conclude the procurement and award of the contract.


c)      Delegated authority to the Executive Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing, in consultation with the Executive Director of Adults, Health Partnerships and Housing (DASS), to take any decisions in relation to future call-off and mini-competitions from the agreement.



Reasons for Recommendations:


·        A Framework will ensure that the Council can efficiently source specialist care and support in Independent Living settings in a timely fashion when responding to new scheme developments.

·        The provision of high-quality care and support within Independent Living settings offers a beneficial and impactful alternative to residential care when Home First is no longer a sustainable long term accommodation option for individuals

·        Commissioning of Care & Support provision within Independent Living settings, ensures the Council fulfils its statutory duty under the Care Act 2014 to provide care and support whilst preventing and influencing the delay of increasing need of ageing individuals.


The recommended approach maximises outcomes and value for money by supporting individuals with care and support needs to remain living independently for as long as they are able, delaying the need for residential care solutions. The Council is also better able to engage with contracted providers to support quality improvement and the shaping of services to meet the needs of people in North Northamptonshire. Furthermore, the Council is able to make informed decisions about its medium-term financial plan due to the reduction in need to source delivery with rates negotiated on a scheme-by-scheme basis.


Alternative Options Considered:


·        Making use of the Homecare Framework to source care and support provision – acknowledged not recommended due to absence of non-specialised support conducive to Independent Living settings. This would mean we could not influence the development of services tailored to the provision of extra care and would limit opportunities to target care and support in a way that maximises independence in these settings.


·        Negotiating individual contracts for each scheme on a non-framework agreement basis - acknowledged equally not recommended due to likelihood of higher cost impact in doing so. This also reduced our oversight of quality and safety and abilities to stimulate an efficient and effective market and service model.



The Chair invited Cllr Dorothy Maxwell to address the Executive. Cllr Maxwell spoke to note that the report before members was a step in the right direction and made reference to monitoring of provider care packages and staff training. Cllr Maxwell also noted the importance of care-receivers being able to remain in their own home whilst they received care.


The Chair thanked Cllr Maxwell for her comments before Lyn Buckingham was  invited to address the meeting. Cllr Buckingham noted that the report currently covered four schemes and 52 care-receivers and further noted a lack of extra care schemes in the North Northamptonshire area. Cllr Buckingham queried whether schemes would look to be extended where there were gaps in service during the contract duration and also referenced budgetary considerations.


The Chair thanked Cllr Buckingham for her contribution before inviting Cllr Helen Harrison, Executive Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing to present a report that sought agreement from the Executive to procure a Care and Support provision within Independent Living schemes for adults who were ordinarily resident in North Northamptonshire, inclusive of those with mental health needs, autism, learning disabilities, and physical/sensory disability. Where required, support would also be available to provide palliative and end of life regulated social care.


Responding to Cllr Maxwell’s comments, Cllr Harrison stated that any care organisation that contracted with the Council was very closely monitored for quality and performance, with an element of the contracts agreed enabling care providers to access free training by provided by the Council. Cllr Harrison stated that people with learning disabilities were a valued group within communities and the care and support provided to help them remain independent was of vital importance. It was heard that the Council had great aspirations to increase the amount of Independent Living across North Northamptonshire and this would be reflected in the forthcoming Housing Strategy.


The Executive noted that that Independent Living schemes supported Adult Social Care priorities by reducing the number of people who went into long-term residential care and by avoiding preventable hospital re-admissions. Such schemes also facilitated timely hospital discharges and allowed people to die at home with dignity and support. Development of future Independent Living sites was an aspect to be considered separately, with the proposed provision before members laying the foundation for ongoing work.


The framework for specialist care and support provision ensured the Council was ready with a contractual arrangement to call on new schemes as they were built across the Council area. The current framework, which had commenced in April 2019, was due to expire at the end of March 2024. A review of current provision and engagement with the wider specialist care and support market plus stakeholders had been conducted. In addition, benchmarking of both cost and service models had been undertaken. Based on the findings it was proposed that a six-year contract be awarded, with the possibility of a one-year extension to allow certainty and stability to the system. The total contract value across the seven  ...  view the full minutes text for item 534