Area Partnership Forum – 24 March 2006 (unconfirmed)
Fife NHS Board
MINUTES OF THE NHS FIFE AREA PARTNERSHIP FORUM HELD AT 1.30 P.M.
ON FRIDAY, 24 MARCH 2006 IN THE COMMON ROOM, QMH
Mr S Fevre (Chair) Mr R McLean
Mrs C Adamson (part time) Mrs S Manion
Mr B Anderson Mr R Nisbet
Mr G Brechin Ms L Parsons (until 2.20 p.m.)
Mr J Docherty Mr R Pettigrew
Dr F Elliot Dr C Saunders
Ms M Gardiner Ms L Sheriffs
Mrs C Inwood Ms L Small
Mrs V Irons Mr S Watt
Mr G Keatings Mrs R Webster
Mr J Leiper Mr J Wilson
Mr D Archibald, Henderson Loggie
Mr G Wagner
Mrs J Millar
Mr Fevre advised that due to the Chancellor’s announcement, the presentation on
“Home Computing Initiative” by Club IT had been cancelled.
Mr Fevre welcomed Mr Archibald from the External Auditors, Henderson Loggie.
Mr Fevre advised that Cathy McLean and Carmel Smith had both retired. He said
that he would write to both of them on behalf of the APF to thank them for their
contributions over the years.
015/06 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies were received from Ms BA Boyter, Dr S Clark,
Ms B Cooke, Mr G Cunningham, Ms S Hutchins, Ms L Rosie,
Ms A Nicol, Mr C Walker and Ms L Whelan.
016/06 MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING
The Minutes of the previous meetings held on 23 September
2005 and 25 November 2005 were approved as a true record.
The following amendments were required to the Minutes of the
previous meeting on 27 January 2006:
• Lynn Parsons’ apologies should have been noted;
• Item 9 did not make sense and required to be re-worded;
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• Under T&Cs in Item 10, the first sentence should read
“…..that these are being agreed nationally.”
With the above amendments the Minutes of the meeting held
on 27 January 2006 were approved as a true record. It was
agreed that Mrs Webster would re-word the paragraph under RW
item 9 and the minutes would be re-issued at the next meeting
017/06 MATTERS ARISING
(a) Home Computing Initiative
Mr Anderson stated that significant progress had been
made and it had been hoped to present a
recommendation today with a proposed launch in June
but the Chancellor had intervened and removed the tax
exemptions from the Home Computing Initiative (HCI)
and this was no longer feasible.
He advised that Club IT intended to have some
discussion with the Scottish Executive about tendering for
the scheme but Mr Anderson said that the risks involved
without the tax and National Insurance benefits seemed
unappealing in terms of the work involved.
Ms Russell said that Club IT had indicated that there was
a small window of opportunity until 6 April to get people
signed up to the scheme. She said that Staffside had
worked really hard on this initiative and wondered if there
was any possibility they would be given that opportunity.
Mr Anderson said that this option had been looked at but
for various good reasons including the extremely tight
timescale, it was felt that this was not a realistic
Mr Fevre said that this should be communicated to staff,
however it was Staffside’s intention to write to the
Chancellor outlining their frustration at the decision.
Dr Saunders said that a number of other NHS Boards had
been able to take up the initiative in the timescale and
wondered if there were lessons to be learned.
Mrs Webster said that it had been made clear at the time
why NHS Fife should not go forward with the scheme as it
Discussion took place on the events that had held up the
decision to take the initiative forward. Mrs Russell said
that, once again, everything had been left to the last
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Mr Docherty was concerned that staff morale would
suffer, especially the lower paid workers, with this
disappointing outcome after the withdrawal of Historic
Scotland and Fife Council benefits.
It was agreed that Mr Anderson and Mrs Russell would
draw up a notice to staff informing them of the situation
and how this was going to be taken forward.
(b) Endowments – General Fund
Mr Pettigrew reminded Members that it had been agreed
to set up the Fife-wide General Fund from 1 April 2006
and it had been envisaged that the LPFs would be used
to generate ideas for the use of the Fund.
The paper set out how this was intended to work and had
been brought to the APF to ensure the Members were
comfortable with the principles and then move it out to the
Discussion took place on the proposals and Mr Pettigrew
said that there was an ongoing debate around the
Kingdom Lottery funding. Mr Fevre stated that there was
a Lottery Committee meeting on 20 April when hopefully
the position would be clarified.
The Forum approved the contents of the report.
(c) Staff Survey
Mr Fevre reported that the response to the survey had
been disappointing at 21% and it was not expected that
this would increase significantly. Mr Fevre said that the
APF needed to link in with the Communications
Department to establish better methods of communicating
Mrs Webster said that the whole issues of how the survey
had been handled required to be looked at. There had
been some issues in terms of how the electronic part had
been dealt with and how and when the forms were
disseminated to staff which might inform that debate.
The Forum noted the update.
(d) Shared Services Projects
Mr Pettigrew reminded Members of the proposed model
to have a national distribution centre supplying all Boards
and NHS Ayrshire & Arran had been identified as the first
Board to use the interim distribution centre.
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The Full Business Case was still work in progress and
issues that had been raised were being pursued. There
had been questions around the anticipated savings
generated from the project and what Boards themselves
felt might be achieved
(ii) Financial Services
With regard to the Finance and Payroll aspect, there had
been no decision on the Hub locations and the National
Project Team were doing their best to get the decision
accelerated. There were a number of very important
issues in terms of statutory, regulatory technical and
accounting and these would be addressed through a
series of workshops with NHS staff.
There was a lot of activity ongoing around the HR and OD
aspects of the project and the National Project Team was
anxious to get a revised information pack out to staff,
taking into account feedback that they had received.
Mr Pettigrew said that this was a key change which, in
itself, implied that it was becoming more definitive as time
passed and was looking at the implications for the rest of
the financial structures within Boards.
Overall, the Project Team had accepted that some of the
bigger issues had not been handled as well as they might
and were currently going through a catch up exercise,
particularly around the corporate and financial
governance issues. Mr Pettigrew said that a revised
project plan and timetable was expected and it was likely
that the FBC would come out towards the end of
A meeting had been held with staff three weeks previous
and there had been some call for a more definitive
version of the plan. Mr Pettigrew said that they would
obviously be brought up to speed as soon as possible.
The Forum noted the verbal update.
(e) Lynebank Phase IV Discharge
Mrs Manion advised that the principles in the Service
Agreement between Fife Council and NHS Fife had been
agreed and would be signed off shortly. As agreed at
the last meeting, she advised that some nominations had
been received from Staffside to join the Project Board and
it was hoped that the Project Board would be complete in
terms of the discharge by the end of the summer.
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Mrs Manion said that they would now be looking at the
ongoing arrangements for the community service and
how that would be supported jointly.
Mr Anderson said that meetings with each of the service
providers had been held to try and drum up interest from
staff, however there had been a fairly muted response.
Fife Council taking on eight NHS Fife staff and a
Secondment Agreement had been drafted from the PIN to
be used as the basis with providers on which
secondments attachments would be sought.
Mr Anderson said that the figures required to be re-
worked to take account of trained and untrained nursing
staff and it may be that there would be a shortage of
trained staff although there would be 22 WTE untrained
staff available. Mr Anderson said that a formal decision
was required to decide that some staff were on ‘at risk’
categories and hopefully that decision would be made
within the next few weeks.
Mr Fevre said that it appeared the risks for untrained staff
were quite significant. Of the 22 WTE staff, eleven were
on temporary contracts due to end in the summer. The
previous use of ‘last in/first out’ would come into play and
decisions would have to be made. Although there were
available posts, the eleven staff whose contracts would
end in the summer may not be able to take them up in the
Mrs Manion said that it was important that NHS Fife
should secure any opportunities with the Ark Housing and
Broad Street projects.
Mr Fevre asked for a decision on the “at risk” element and
Mr Anderson stated that, in employment terms, the
trained staff were not at risk but the untrained staff were
at risk. He said however that even with the trained staff
there may be some anxieties about the client group and
this was an issue that had to be overcome.
Mr Fevre said that this was a complex problem and it
would be useful to get all the issues mapped out in a
Mr Anderson said that the situation was so fluid and to
come back to this group with a paper in two months
would not be appropriate.
Mrs Webster agreed and said that it came back to how
the Redeployment Policy would be run. She said that she
was not looking for a decision from the APF, merely
giving an update on the position and assuring Members
that this would be managed on an ongoing basis.
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Mr Fevre asked if the Dunfermline & West Fife LPF
membership required to be enhanced to become more
robust. Mrs Manion said that given the issues to discuss,
it had been disappointing that the last meeting had not
been quorate and it would be helpful if some way of
enhancing the process without setting up other
arrangements could be found.
Mr Anderson said that there was an open invitation to
Staffside representatives. Discussion took place on the
difficulty of attending these meetings and Mr Nesbit said
that there required to be clarity and unity amongst all the
CHPs and LPFs about how to engage people to attend
Mr Fevre suggested that he and Mr Nesbit had a meeting SF/RN
outwith the Forum to discuss this issue.
The Forum noted the update.
018/06 FINANCE REPORT
Mr Pettigrew reported that the financial position at 28 February
which would be reported to the NHS Fife Board the following
week was as follows:
• Overall there was an underspend of £5.6m;
• Operational Division were overspent by £600k, with energy
costs being a major factor;
• The combined CHPs were underspent by £1.0m;
• Family Health Services were overspent by £1.1m, the
major factors being the overspend on the GMS Contract,
offset in part by the underspend on GP Prescribing;
• Budgets held by Corporate Directorates were all
underspent, with slippage and unused allocations the major
• The year-end forecast was an underspend of £5m but the
provision for Agenda for Change was virtually certain to
need to be increased. The outturn underspend would
therefore fall within the Board’s 1% carry forward
entitlement most of which was earmarked for commitments
deferred into 2006/07.
Mr Pettigrew advised that the Local Delivery Plan had gone in
draft to SEHD and attached to that were the financial
projections for the next five years. They were still work in
progress and would need to be translated into the local
The Forum noted the verbal report.
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019/06 SELF ASSESSMENT AUDIT TOOL
(a) 2005/06 Progress Update
Mrs Webster introduced the 2005/06 Action Plan. She
advised that this would be the last visit by Mr Archibald
and, on a personal basis, thanked him for his work and
assistance in the past. She said that there had been a six
month review which had assisted in the production of the
Mr Fevre stated that the plan had been discussed with
Staffside that morning and having had the six month
paper had been really useful. The report formulated the
work of LPFs and would provide evidence of performance
within each CHP and the Operating Division. Mr Fevre
said that there had been concerns about the process and
it had been acknowledged that the process had not been
as robust as in previous years.
Mr Brechin advised that the Violence & Aggression
training pack had been launched earlier in the month but
had not been explicitly mentioned. Mr Fevre said that this
should be added.
Dr Saunders said that arrangements for the cascading of
information for the Corporate Directorates had been
omitted in the second paragraph on Page 1.
Mrs Webster said that would be added.
Mr Archibald said that Mrs Webster had touched on the
guidance that had been issued by Audit Scotland which
gave all auditors a list of criteria outputs for the year. This
was the first year that Staff Governance had not been a
mandatory item but Henderson Loggie had opted to keep
in the plan as it was seen as an important piece of work
within their area. He said that he hoped it would be
restored as a mandatory output next year.
Mr Archibald was conscious that they had not had the
input to the document this year prior to it coming to the
APF. The Action Plans had to lodged with SEHD by
31 March and Mr Archibald said that comments would
therefore be required prior to that and any amendments
Mr Docherty said that the external audit gave more
confidence that the process had been handled properly
and had proper direction.
The Forum noted the Staff Governance Action Plan:
Progress Update March 2006 and the timescale for its
submission to SEHD. This would include minor
amendments from discussion today and comments from
the External Auditors.
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(b) Action Plan 2006/07
Mr Fevre said that it would be interesting to get the LPF
view on the 2006/07 document as they had tried to
highlight what was thought of as an important role around
the input for LPFs. He said that this would require some
support from the APF and he, together with Ms Webster
and other members would work with the LPFs to see
what was required.
Discussion took place on the timescales included in the
plan and Mr Fevre said that hopefully it was robust
enough and included things that could actually be
The Forum noted the Action Plan and the timescale for
its submission to SEHD which would include minor
amendments and comments from the External Auditors.
020/06 LOCAL PARTNERSHIP FORUM DEVELOPMENT –
KIRKCALDY & LEVENMOUTH CHP CONSTITUTION
Mr Fevre advised that all LPF Constitutions should be formally
submitted to the APF for approval.
The Forum approved the Constitution.
021/06 REDEPLOYMENT GROUP
Mr Fevre introduced the report which was for information and
feedback. He advised that there was currently a
Redeployment Group within NHS Fife and it was becoming
more and more important that that there was an agreed
process around redeployment.
Mr Fevre advised that Craig Brown was the lead on that group
and if there were any comments on the paper they should be
fed back to Mr Brown. Mr Fevre said that it was important to
get a process that would meet all the requirements of the
service and the members of staff who required to be
Dr Saunders said that it would be helpful to know how long
from the authorisation being signed to the external advertising
of jobs. Mrs Webster said that they were trying to put
timescales around this but the needs of individuals being
redeployed had to be considered.
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Mr Pettigrew issued a warning to Members around the
recruitment process. Recently an advertisement had been
placed quite properly; subsequently an individual member of
staff had been approached by telephone by another publishing
company which then billed the Board for £2.5k. Mr Pettigrew
drew this to the Members attention to this incident so that
people were aware that unscrupulous organisations were
preying on people’s naivety.
Mr Brechin said that he was aware of a number of areas where
people had either been asked to sign for advertisements or
invoices or had been asked to pursue routes which had costs
attached and it might be useful to put out a warning around the
The Forum noted the paper and that any feedback should be
given to Mr Brown.
022/06 SMOKING POLICY
Mrs Webster introduced the Smoking Policy which had been
updated in light of the new legislation for Scotland being
introduced on 26 March 2006.
Mrs Webster said that implementation of the new legislation
would have a direct impact on staff and one of the issues that
had been discussed was the question of staff smoking in
uniform which had been passed to the HAI team for their input.
Mr Fevre advised that Staffside that morning had broadly
welcomed the policy however there was an issue around ‘on
call’ and ‘on call rooms’ within NHS Fife and how that would be
managed and required clarity around that element.
Mrs Webster said that there was a general no smoking policy
in all hospital premises including residences.
Mr Fevre said another issue raised by Staffside was smoking
on NHS grounds and the sensitive approach required by
managers to deal with this. Mrs Webster said that managers
should be dealing with smoking within NHS grounds sensitively
however if somebody consistently chose to ignore the rules
they could be looking at disciplinary action.
Mr Fevre said that it may be useful if the element of sensitivity
and spirit of what had been in the Acute Policy could to be
translated into this policy.
Mr Wilson said that the issue had to be dealt with sensitively
from both sides. Although the policy stated that smoking in the
grounds was prohibited, it would be impossible to police that.
Page 9 of 14
Mr Brechn said that the difference between the 1992 smoking
policy and the present one was that the policy now had to be
written to reflect the law. Whereas it may be agreed to
implement the new law, it would be inappropriate to build in
tolerance into the policy.
Dr Saunders drew attention to Item 5.1 and said that it would
be helpful to clarify that ‘on duty’ referred to work as opposed
to ‘on duty’ at home. Mrs Webster agreed to clarify this item.
Mr Pettigrew wondered if the words “whether owned or leased”
should be added to item 5.2.
Mr Fevre said that the Policy would be revisited in light of
discussion today and revised accordingly. With these potential
amendments the Forum approved the Smoking Policy.
023/06 LEASE CAR POLICY
Mrs Webster introduced the Policy which had been the
culmination of a piece of work in trying to pull together the
three previous lease car policies into one NHS Fife Policy. The
majority of the content had been taken from the Primary Care
Division Policy and included the Agenda for Change
conditions; it should be noted that there were significant
changes for those people who had been covered under the old
Fife Health Board scheme.
Mrs Webster said that lease car contracts were normally drawn
up on a three year basis and the contract was between the
individual and the employer. Mrs Webster advised that in the
past there had been specified Base Cars and a provision that
the Remuneration Sub-Committee would determine the Base
Car for Directors. The view at the SMT meeting was that there
should be one Base Car for everyone, i.e. Ford Fiesta.
Mr Fevre said that under item 1.10, the review process
required to be reported and agreed by the APF to ensure that
any changes would be communicated to all individuals within
the leased car arrangements. Mr Fevre also asked, in light of
the recent budget, for confirmation that 1250cc base car did
not take it into the higher road tax bracket.
Discussion took place on several issues within the policy with
particular debate on the monthly charge to the individual. Mrs
Webster agreed that an extra sentence be added at Item 8.2:
“which will be followed by discussion between the individual
member of staff and the lease car manager.”
As suggested by Dr Saunders, it was agreed that the NHS Fife
Policy should be consulted to obtain wording and clarification
around some of the issues.
Page 10 of 14
Dr Saunders asked if the insurance cover under the new policy
would cover courtesy cars provided by a garage if the leased
car was in for repair. Mr Brechin said that in his experience
extra had to be paid to get a courtesy car and Mrs Webster RW
undertook to check this item.
Mrs Webster said that notwithstanding that some of the
wording in the Policy required to be altered, these were not
material and the policy would be the one used for new leased
The Forum approved the Lease Car Policy with the
amendments as discussed.
024/06 AGENDA FOR CHANGE
Mr Garrick Wagner updated members on the situation with
Agenda for Change. He said that work was ongoing around
consistency checking with the National Consistency Group and
getting jobs to payroll as expected. 1033 people had now been
paid on the Agenda for Change benefits. Work was being
carried out with Payroll colleagues and the target in the next
month was 1000 people.
A new implementation plan had been received from SEHD with
revised timescales to get all staff assimilated by October and
work with Payroll was required to ensure all arrears were paid
by the end of December.
Mr Wagner said that to date approximately 60% of people were
covered under KSF. Progress was being made and reminders
had been sent out to managers asking for updates. He said
that it was only through feedback from managers that they
would be able to get an accurate estimation of where NHS Fife
stood with KSF.
Mr Wagner said that at the last update it had been hoped to
see the new system introduced on unsociable hours by
October 2006 however in the latest national update, the date
for the introduction of the unsociable hours agreement was
Mrs Webster said that the dates that should be ringed to meet
the national timetable were 1 October when all staff had to be
assimilated on Agenda for Change and 31 December when all
arrears had to be paid.
Mrs Webster said that NHS Fife was currently missing the
31 March deadline for all KSF outlines and there had been a
push to encourage Staffside representatives and managers to
get these outlines completed.
The Forum noted the update.
Page 11 of 14
025/06 OHS XTRA
Mrs Webster advised that NHS Fife along with NHS
Lanarkshire were taking part in a two year pilot project, funded
by SEHD to provide a pro-active service to support staff by
providing rapid access to a dedicated network of services.
Mrs Webster said that it was hoped to bring regular reports on
the effect of the service and then report back to SEHD.
Meetings would be held to try and raise the profile of OHSxtra
so that people would be clear how they could access the
Mr Fevre said that it was crucial to get the information out to all
staff to ensure that people were aware of where the meetings
would take place.
The Forum noted the verbal report.
026/06 WORKFORCE MODERNISATION AND DEVELOPMENT
Mrs Webster introduced the report which would be considered
by the NHS Fife Board the following week. She said that any
comments would still be appreciated and the final document
was due to be submitted to SEHD by the end of April.
The Forum noted the report and that comments should be fed
back to Mrs Webster no later than Friday 21 April.
027/06 JOINT FUTURE STAFFING FRAMEWORK
Mr Fevre said that Staffside had met the previous month to get
the paper endorsed however the paper had not gone through
the normal negotiating processes. There had been a meeting
the previous week to drive that forward and assist some of the
work around the Lynebank discharge programme.
Mr Fevre advised that Staffside were comfortable to approve
the document and Forum members had had the opportunity in
the past to comment.
The Forum approved the Joint Future Staffing Framework.
028/06 ITEMS FOR NOTING:
(a) Minutes of the Glenrothes and North East Fife Local
Mr Fevre said that LPFs should be encouraged to submit
the minutes of their meetings to this Forum. Whilst this
was not a formal requirement, it would be useful for these
minutes to come to the APF.
Page 12 of 14
Mr Fevre highlighted the item on the repatriation of
management of staff in Podiatry and Physiotherapy. Mrs
Irons said that no final decision had been taken and all of
the issues were ongoing.
029/06 ANY OTHER COMPETENT BUSINESS
(a) Travel Survey
Ms Russell advised that there had been discussions with
Staffside she had been asked by Ann McCarlie, the
Project Manager, to bring the questionnaire to the
meeting for approval and get the survey issued to staff
with wage slips at the end of April.
Mr Fevre said that Staffside had made some
amendments to the survey. Some discussion took place
on the survey and Mr Brechin highlighted three areas
where he had reservations:
1. The survey read as if all staff travelled to a base and
2. It was not sensible to list four hospitals; and
3. The question on “Do you expect to move to the
Victoria Hospital or Queen Margaret Hospital” should
be made more general and say, perhaps, “Do you
expect your base to move. If so, when.”
Mr Brechn said that it should either be much more
focused on the Victoria and Queen Margaret Hospitals or
it should be more general and at the present it was
Ms Russell said that she would feed these comments
back to the Project Manager.
(b) Counter Fraud Service
Mrs Webster advised that a letter had been received from
the Head of the Counter Fraud Service who had offered
to come and deliver presentations and/or workshops to
staff. She thought that it would be worthwhile inviting
them along to give a presentation to the APF.
Mr Pettigrew said that this was part of a rolling
programme to raise awareness of staff generally and was
Mr Fevre said that while he welcomed the presentation,
the agenda for the APF was too busy and a separate
event should be set up. Invitations would go out to APF
members but other people would also be welcome to
Page 13 of 14
(c) ACCA Accreditation
Mr Pettigrew advised that the NHS Fife Finance
Directorate had been in negotiations with the ACCA and
had gained approved employer status. Mr Pettigrew said
that this accreditation was beneficial to staff themselves
and would have a positive effect on encouraging self
development within the organisation.
030/06 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
Friday, 26 May 2006 at 1.30 p.m. in the Board Room,
Hayfield House, Kirkcaldy
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