Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: 25 January 2012

Venue: Senate Chamber, Parliament Buildings

The meeting commenced at 2.02 p.m. in public session.

1. Apologies

Apologies noted above.

2. Chair’s Business

The Chairperson welcomed Sue Ramsey to the Committee.

The Chairperson reminded members that the Committee will hold a series of informal meetings on Thursday 2nd February 2012.

The Committee agreed to invite the Fire Brigades Union to an informal meeting.

The Committee agreed to write to the Department regarding the pseudomonas outbreaks in the Royal Jubilee & Altnagelvin hospitals. The Committee also agreed to invite the Minister to give evidence to it on the outbreak.

3.Draft minutes of the meeting on Wednesday 18th January 2012

The minutes of the Committee meeting on Wednesday 18th January 2012 were agreed.

The Committee agreed to write to the Minister regarding allegations of abuse at Lissue & Forster Green Hospitals.

2.19 p.m. Mr Jim Wells left the meeting.

4. Matters arising

The Committee noted a response from the Minister regarding the provision of IVF treatment and the Regional Fertility Centre and agreed to write back to request further information and to prepare a Committee motion on this matter.

The Committee noted a response from the Minister about HPV testing and agreed to forward this information to NICVA.  

The Committee noted a response from the Minister about the availability of prescription only medication on the internet and agreed to write to the Department again on this matter. The Committee also agreed to write to Dr Davidson who raised this matter seeking his views.

2.40 p.m. Mr Jim Wells rejoined the meeting. 

The Committee noted a response from the Minister to the Committee for Education about pupils who require medication in school.

The Committee noted responses from the Chairs of the five Local Commissioning Groups regarding the commissioning of services from the Music Therapy Trust & Homestart andagreed to write to the Department about this matter.

The Committee agreed to arrange a cross-sectoral event focusing on the importance of early years interventions.

2.56 p.m. Ms Michelle Gildernew left the meeting.

2.56 p.m. Mr Jim Wells took the Chair.

5. Evidence session on resource spend for 2011/2012

The Committee took evidence from:

Ms Julie Thompson    Deputy Secretary of Resources and Performance, Management, DHSSPS

Mr Peter Toogood   Director of Finance, DHSSPS

Ms Christine Jendoubi   Director, Mental Health, Disability & Older People Policy

A question and answer session ensued.

3.10 p.m Ms Michelle Gildernew rejoined the meeting & resumed the chair.

3.15 p.m. Ms Paula Bradley left the meeting.

3.38 p.m. Ms Paula Bradley rejoined the meeting.

3.39 p.m. Mr John McCallister left the meeting.

3.49 p.m. Mr Kieran McCarthy left the meeting.

3.52 p.m. Mr Kieran McCarthy rejoined the meeting.

3.57 p.m. Ms Sue Ramsey left the meeting.

The Chairperson thanked the witnesses for attending. The witnesses agreed to provide the Committee with additional information.

6. Statutory Rule. SR 2012/3 The Specified Products from China  (Restriction on First Placing on the Market) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012

The Committee considered SR 2012/3 The Specified Products from China (Restriction on First Placing on the Market) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012 and had no objection to the Rule subject to the report of the Examiner of Statutory Rules.

7. Evidence session on legislative consent motion regarding amendments to the Health & Social Care Bill

The Committee took evidence from:

Dr Mike Mawhinney                 Head of Medicines Regulatory Group, DHSSPS

Mrs Shona Coy                          Medicines Regulatory Group, DHSSPS

Mr Tony Wallace                       Medicines Regulatory Group, DHSSPS,

Mr Craig Allen                          Legislation Unit, DHSSPS

A question and answer session ensued. The Chairperson thanked the witnesses for attending.

4.00 p.m. Ms Sue Ramsey rejoined the meeting.

4.01 p.m. Mr Gordon Dunne left the meeting.

4.10 p.m. Mr John McCallister rejoined the meeting.

4.23 p.m. Mrs Pam Lewis left the meeting.

4.27 p.m. Mr John McCallister left the meeting.

4.29 p.m. Mrs Pam Lewis rejoined the meeting.

 The Committee agreed to consider this matter further at its next meeting. 

8. Proposed statutory rules

The Committee considered the Food Hygiene (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012 and agreed that it was content for the Food Standards Agency to prepare the rule. 

The Committee took evidence on the Health and Personal Social Services (Superannuation Scheme, Injury Benefits and Additional Voluntary Contributions), Health and Social Care (Pension Scheme) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012 from:

Mr Phil McCusker                     HSC Pension Policy, DHSSPS

Mr Russell McGowan               HSC Pension Policy, DHSSPS

A question and answer session ensued. The Chairperson thanked the witnesses for attending. The Committee agreed to defer consideration of the SL1.

9. Forward Work Programme

The Committee agreed its Forward Work Programme.

10. Correspondence

The Committee noted a letter from the Minister regarding the Department’s consultation on ‘A Draft Policy for Developing Advocacy Services – A Guide for Commissioners’ and agreed to return to this matter at its next meeting.

The Committee noted a letter from the Minister regarding the UK Government response to the Second Interim Assessment from the Stakeholder Advisory Group on Extremely Low Frequency Electric and Magnetic Fields and agreed to write to the Department for further information.

The Committee noted correspondence from the Committee for Finance and Personnel regarding the monitoring of Departmental Savings Delivery Plans.

The Committee noted a letter from Mr Steven Agnew MLA seeking the Committee’s views on proposed legislation and agreed to write to Mr Agnew to inform him that it would defer consideration of the proposals until a public consultation had been completed.

The Committee noted correspondence regarding the use of homeopathy.

The Committee noted a briefing paper from Kinship Care and agreed to write to the Department for an update on the timescales for introducing the Adoption & Children Bill and the Mental Capacity Bill.

The Committee noted correspondence from the Family Group Conference Forum.

11. Any Other Business

The Committee agreed to write to the Department about the cost of phoning some doctors surgeries.

The Committee agreed to write to Mr Sam Gardiner MLA.

12. Date, time and place of next meeting

The next Committee meeting will be on Wednesday 1st February 2012 at 2.00pm in the Senate Chamber, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 4.48 p.m.


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