from Cllr. Daniel Elmer, Forehoe Division – Mulbarton, South Wymondham, Newton Flotman, Spooner Row, Wreningham, Swardeston, Bracon Ash, Swainsthorpe, East Carleton, Flordon, Ketteringham

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Fire and Rescue
• New Emergency Medical Service – We are pleased to be able to let you know that, after lengthy regional discussions, we have an agreement across all Eastern fire and rescue services and the East of England Ambulance Service Trust which will enable firefighters to attend to adult cardiac arrest patients in parts of Norfolk. This is a trial scheme, which we agreed to explore as part of our current Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP 2020-23) work, and follows a successful pilot project in 2016.
A memorandum of understanding is in place across all parties and the costs to the service will be recouped from the NHS.
The welfare of our own staff remains a top priority. Our on-call crews in Sheringham and North Walsham have signed up to help and are receiving training and support before they undertake this additional task. While we are not making it mandatory, all those asked have agreed to take part, citing that they joined the service to save lives and this is another way of being able to do so.
Our crews will be called to support medically where there is a patient in need within 10 minutes of their local fire stations. They will attend alongside EEAST ambulance crews. We are also looking at the possibility of extending this pilot scheme at a later date to include further fire stations.
You will remember that, during the pandemic, our crews offered much support to EEAST and the NHS across Norfolk as part of our commitment to collaboration. We remain committed to reducing risk and saving lives across Norfolk.

• Have Your Say on Bus Services in Norfolk – Consultation has been launched asking for residents’ views on bus services in Norfolk. Whether you use buses every day, or not at all, Norfolk County Council would like to know what improvements are the most important for you.
With Norfolk set to be awarded almost £50m from the Department for Transport to make the county’s bus services and facilities better, your views will help to decide what the money should be spent on.
In October 2021 the County Council published Norfolk’s Bus Service Improvement Plan which outlines the ambitions for the next 5 years. The plan includes ideas to simplify ticketing and journey information, cut fares for under 25s, bring in cleaner and greener buses, improve accessibility and bus stops, and make better and more frequent links between the places people live, work and shop.

The indicative offer of £49.6m for Norfolk will help to put this plan into action and the County Council is now working alongside bus operators to shape details of what the money will be spent on. A vital part of this is understanding what is important to residents, and what will help to attract more people to choose public transport for their journeys more often.
The Bus Service Improvement Plan consultation is open for seven weeks, from Tuesday 17 May to Tuesday 5 July.

Cost of Living and Care:
• New Cost of Living Scheme Launched – Norfolk County Council unveiled last Friday a £7.7m package of hardship support offering increased flexibility and choice in the way a broader range of households can access help.
The council is topping up £6.7m of Government funding from the Household Support Fund with a further £1m to create a new Norfolk Cost of Living Support Scheme which will help people who are struggling to pay for food, energy and water bills, and other essentials.
To ensure part of the support the council is offering is sustainable for the longer term, in addition to the £7.7 million Cost of Living Support Scheme, the council is investing a further £225,000 of capital into its partnership with the Norfolk Community Foundation Nourishing Norfolk food hub offer, bringing the total investment over the last year to £500,000.
We would always encourage residents who find themselves in hardship to contact the council on 0344 800 8020, so we can offer support either directly or through our partners.
• Adult Services Update – Proposals for a new Board to drive up the quality of privately provided Adult Social Care across Norfolk are due to be discussed by the County Council’s Cabinet.
In the wake of the Covid 19 Pandemic, which placed unprecedented pressures on the care sector, councillors are discussing ways to help providers improve from a position in which only 71.1% of care providers in Norfolk are rated Good or Outstanding. The County Council is looking at how it can help providers improve the quality of care they provide, and what form that support can take.
The new Programme Board will operate within the Interrelated Care System (ICS) framework being put in place in Norfolk.
A new Care Quality Programme Board will work to deliver a Norfolk wide care quality strategic framework. This will enable all partners, including care providers, to work together to coordinate and direct action to improve care quality.

About Michael Hill

Wreningham Parish Council Chair

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