Agenda and minutes

Health Services Task and Finish Group - Monday, 18th October, 2021 12.00 pm

Venue: The White House, Hockliffe Street, Leighton Buzzard, LU7 1HD

Contact: Committee Officer  01525 631920 or: Email:

Note: This will be a hybrid meeting; remote attendees may join via MS Teams - link to be provided upon request. 

No. Item




Apologies for absence had been received from the Town Clerk and from B Collins (NHS BLMK CCG).  It was noted that N Barnes had been delayed and would join the meeting as soon as possible.




(i)     Under the Localism Act 2011 (sections 26-37 and Schedule 4) and in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct, Members are required to declare any interests which are not currently entered in the Member’s Register of Interests or if he/she has not notified the Monitoring Officer of it.

(ii)    Should any Member have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in an item on the agenda, the Member may not participate in consideration of that item unless a Dispensation has first been requested (in writing) and granted by the Council (see Dispensation Procedure).



No pecuniary declarations were made or dispensations requested.




To receive questions and statements from members of the public in respect of any item of business included in the agenda, as provided for in Standing Order No.s 3 (e)(f)(g) and (h).


Members of the public are welcome to attend the meeting but are asked to note that attendance numbers must be limited to mitigate for Covid-19 risks. Please contact us to advise if you wish to attend before 4pm on the Friday before the meeting. Written representations may also be submitted before 4pm on the Friday before the meeting.




There were no members of the public present.





The Task and Finish Group received the minutes of the Health Services Task and Finish Group meeting held on 15 July 2021.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the Health Services Task and Finish Group meeting held 15 July 2021 be approved as a correct record and were signed accordingly.


Minute reference 18/HS: Mr Selous was asked if he would provide a copy of the letter.


Minute reference 17/HS: clarification was sought regarding whether the town’s GP practices had started discussing the Hub and potential service delivery. Dr Lewis advised there were regular meetings of the Primary Care Network and preliminary discussions were taking place regarding collaborative working.




To receive an update from Central Bedfordshire Council and BLMK Clinical Commissioning Group in respect of the integrated health and care hub programme and in particular, plans for current and future healthcare in Leighton-Linslade.



Patricia Coker, Head of Partnerships and Performance for the department of Social Care, Health and Housing at Central Bedfordshire Council, introduced a presentation regarding improving service delivery in Leighton Buzzard. This set out the joint aspiration of the local authority with the health service to deliver five integrated health and care hubs across the geographical area, in a phased approach and based on a hub and spoke model.


The Leighton Buzzard hub was intended to be the fifth hub delivered based on various prioritisation criteria including the current number of patients per square metre and the operational/space constraints of the GP practices. Currently there was an average of 16.87 patients per square metre across the three GP practices which represented a lesser operational constraint than in other areas.


The challenges faced in Leighton Buzzard were echoed across other areas and included: ageing population, housing growth, growth in service demand, lack of capacity in primary care, workforce shortages within primary care and the need to find efficiencies by changing the way in which services were delivered. Essentially, the historic model of all patients first seeing a GP before being referred on to other services was no longer sustainable.


A strategic outline case was the first phase in developing a business case and was testing feasibility. Following the development of the strategic outline case, two stakeholder workshops had taken place in May 2018 with a focus on identifying the needs of the locality and considering potential location options. A shortlisting process had identified three potential sites which were: land south of the High Street, land south of Vandyke Road and the Leighton Buzzard VOSA testing station. A selection of the comments made about the three sites was shared. The conclusion drawn was that the land south of the High Street site was more problematic in terms of vehicular access and impact on the town centre, so the Vandyke Road site and the VOSA test station site would both be considered as the preferred way forward.


It was clarified that the potential sites could be revisited at the outline business case stage.


No significant capital funding had yet been identified for the Hubs in West Mid Beds, Houghton Regis or Leighton Buzzard. The difficulties of accessing NHS capital funding were explained, with funding often being fragmented, not consistent or with short timescales. This lack of certainty over funding made it impossible to give a firm timescale for development of an integrated hub in Leighton-Linslade. There was potential for discussion with the developers of the Clipstone Park housing estate as to whether the land allocated for a GP practice could be converted to capital receipts and that Town Council support would be welcomed in this respect.


The next step would be development of a service model – the range and type of services needed – and an outline business case.  This work would require significant engagement. CBC and BLMK CCG would continue to work together as quickly as possible to be ready to respond  ...  view the full minutes text for item 23.




Councillors expressed some frustration about not having been able to review the presentation slides in advance as these contained a lot of detailed information. P Coker apologised for this which had been due to annual leave and advised she would share the presentation slides following the meeting. 


Councillor Owen asked whether Central Bedfordshire Council was prepared to share the strategic outline case – as had been requested at previous meetings – and also the summary findings of the two stakeholder workshops held in May 2018. P Coker advised some summary information had been shared but that the documents contained some sensitive information and partners would need to consider the request further.


It was confirmed that representatives would be happy to come back to a future meeting to share information on how things were progressing across healthcare services, as well as progress with the integrated hub programme.


No future meeting date was agreed but the Chair advised he hoped the Group could receive an update on progress in around six months’ time.