Agenda and draft minutes

Special JHOSC meeting - NHS Quality Accounts, North Central London Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Friday, 31st May, 2024 10.00 am

Venue: Committee Rooms 5&6, Islington Town Hall, Upper Street N1 2UD

Contact: Dominic O'Brien, Principal Scrutiny Officer  Email:

No. Item



Please note this meeting may be filmed or recorded by the Council or by anyone attending the meeting using any communication method. Members of the public participating in the meeting (e.g. making deputations, asking questions, making oral protests) should be aware that they are likely to be filmed, recorded or reported on.  By entering the ‘meeting room’, you are consenting to being filmed and to the possible use of those images and sound recordings.


The Chair of the meeting has the discretion to terminate or suspend filming or recording, if in his or her opinion continuation of the filming, recording or reporting would disrupt or prejudice the proceedings, infringe the rights of any individual, or may lead to the breach of a legal obligation by the Council.


The Chair referred Members present to agenda Item 1 as shown on the agenda in respect of filming at this meeting, and Members noted the information contained therein’.



To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Cohen, Cllr James and Cllr Revah.

It was noted that four Councillors (Cllrs Atolagbe, Chakraborty, Chowdhury & Milne) had joined the meeting online. As only Councillors attending the meeting in-person could be considered towards the quorum requirements (which was a minimum requirement of four Members required, with one Member from at least four of the five boroughs), the meeting was technically not quorate. The meeting therefore continued as an informal briefing and it was noted that any formal decisions would need to be deferred to a future quorate meeting.




The Chair will consider the admission of any late items of Urgent Business. 


The Committee noted the pre-election guidance which indicated that, during the current pre-election period, Councillors should exercise caution to avoid any potentially controversial statements/decisions that could be associated with a particular party.




A member with a disclosable pecuniary interest or a prejudicial interest in a matter who attends a meeting of the authority at which the matter is considered:


(i) must disclose the interest at the start of the meeting or when the interest becomes apparent, and

(ii) may not participate in any discussion or vote on the matter and must withdraw from the meeting room.


A member who discloses at a meeting a disclosable pecuniary interest which is not registered in the Register of Members’ Interests or the subject of a pending notification must notify the Monitoring Officer of the interest within 28 days of the disclosure.


Disclosable pecuniary interests, personal interests and prejudicial interests are defined at Paragraphs 5-7 and Appendix A of the Members’ Code of Conduct



Cllr Pippa Connor declared an interest by virtue of her membership of the Royal College of Nursing.

Cllr Pippa Connor declared an interest by virtue of her sister working as a GP in Tottenham.




To consider any requests received in accordance with Part 4, Section B, paragraph 29 of the Council’s constitution.





·         Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

·         Whittington Health NHS Trust

·         North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust (quality accounts document to follow)

Additional documents:


Gillian Smith, Chief Medical Officer at the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, introduced the draft quality accounts report for the Trust, noting that its main hospital sites were Barnet Hospital, Chase Farm Hospital and Royal Free Hospital with a range of services also delivered across other sites such as community hospitals and community-based clinics.

Gillian Smith explained that the theme of this year’s quality account report was equality issues with the progress in these areas highlighted in the report, including through the quality priorities. It was also recognised that there was more to do on equality, diversity & inclusion and on addressing health inequalities.

Other developments included:

  • The launch of a new Quality Strategy and the implementation of a new Patient Safety Incident Response Framework.
  • There had been an increase in demand for services including urgent and emergency care and cancer diagnosis/treatment with further increases expected in the coming years. This challenge was reflected in the level of cancer performance against national targets and the Trust had moved into an enhanced support framework with NHS England to recover that position.
  • In terms of elective care, there had been a huge impact from the industrial action which had impacted on the ability to reduce waiting lists, although a good position had been maintained against the longer waiting times.
  • Good progress had been made against the quality priorities set out the previous year, including on patient involvement and the establishment of an involvement framework.


Gillian Smith then responded to questions from the Committee:

  • Cllr Clarke asked about maternity services at the Royal Free Hospital in the context of the expected changes to services in North Central London (NCL) that had recently been consulted upon. Gillian Smith explained that the birth rate in NCL was falling and that, while the quality of services and patient feedback was good, it would not be possible to sustain services at the number of units currently in place in the longer term with the declining number of births.
  • Cllr Connor referred to page 4 of the report, which stated that the CQC had carried out a focused inspection of maternity services at Edgware Community Hospital and had rated the service as ‘Good’ for the safe and well-led domains and requested further details on the ratings for the other domains. Gillian Smith clarified that these were the only domains that had been inspected and that this had been the only CQC inspection of maternity services within the past year. The actions relating to previous CQC inspections had been covered in previous quality accounts reports and had now been closed.
  • Asked by Cllr Connor about other CQC inspections relating to the Royal Free, Gillian Smith said that they were at an early stage of understanding what the inspection schedule would be under the new CQC framework, but that no announced inspections were anticipated at present. She confirmed that the most recent inspection of the whole Trust took place in 2018 and that the report was published in 2019 with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.