Agenda item

Options for the future delivery of extra care housing and social inclusion


Councillor Mary Aspinall (Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care) introduced the report and highlighted:


a)    Extra care housing and social inclusion was vital to support residents of Plymouth to be able to live independently for longer without the need to more into more expensive and inappropriate social and nursing care;

b)    The aim was to ensure that residents were able to continue participating in social activities that supported mental health and wellbeing;

c)    Without sufficient provision in place, there was a risk that the needs would be unmet and lead to an increase in demands on housing support and care services;

d)    Through the commissioning approach, services would work co-operatively with partners such as LiveWell and those in the voluntary sector to serve the best interests of the community as detailed on Page 60 of the report.


Emma Crowther (Interim Head of Commissioning), Hannah Shaw (Commissioning Officer) and Joanne Green (Strategic Comissioning Manager) added:


e)    The proposal was to procure new contracts for both extra care provision and social inclusion within all of the seven existing extra care schemes and this would include a core care service for all tenants, self-directed support for individual care needs, and social inclusion for all tenants;

f)     The team intended on holding market engagement sessions to support and encourage collaborative and co-operative bidding from providers;

g)    The demand for housing with care provision was going to increase over the next 10 to 12 years and was reflected through the population data which predicted an increase in the older population of 27% from 2020-2035 and so the business case allowed for the potential to build on and increase the extra care housing stock in the city through the proposed contract term which would mean the council could flex the contract to meet growing demand;

h)     Feedback showed that social inclusion was a critical part of the service, helping residents moving into schemes and making them feel settled and welcome;

i)     The existing service needed to be provided whilst the commissioning work so it was recommended that the current provider continued for another eight months.


Councillor Chris Penberthy (Cabinet Member for Housing, Co-operative Development and Communities) added:


j)     He would be working with Councillor Mary Aspinall through the Plan for Homes, which would ensure that there was enough supported housing in the pipeline to meet future demand.


In response to questions, it was reported:


k)    That the aim was to encourage companies and organisations that would normally be in competition to work collaboratively;

l)     Contracts would go live at the beginning of April 2024.



The Cabinet agreed to:


1.    Approve the Business Case;

2.    Approve the direct award of a new contract to the current Extra Care provider, Gemcare Southwest T/A Cera Care, for a period of 8 months to 31st March 2024 in order to bridge the gap in provision of services whilst a procurement exercise is undertaken (with a contract value for 8 months of circa £2.3m);

3.    Approve the decision to commence a procurement process for the commencement of new contracts in April 2024 for extra care housing service for older people (care element) and social inclusion (total potential contract value for full contract term and potential additional ECH stock to address future demand – circa £50m);

4.    Delegate authority to the Strategic Director for People to make the contract award decision, and other relevant decisions in relation to this contract where authority to do so is not already delegated to officers.

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