Having your say about health services
There are several organisations that work to ensure that the views of patients, carers and the public are heard and acted upon by those making decisions concerning health services.
NHS Clinical Commissing Groups (CCGs)
NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are responsible for planning and delivering local health services.
These groups allow patients to share experiences of health and healthcare services and influence future decisions. You can find out about CCG development plans and give your views on their work to help improve health services by participating in regular sessions such as
- Patient Forums
- Community Forums
- Voluntary Sector Meetings
- Governing Body Meetings
Each GP Practice should have a patient group. This may be a face to face group or a virtual group. Find out by asking your GP practice Manager
Involve North East
Involve North East is a charity that works to improve health and wellbeing through involving communities in decisions around health provision and giving people the chance to have their voices heard.
Involve North East work with and represent communities through Health Action Networks. Networks come together to discuss issues related to all aspects of health, whether it be identifying gaps in services, putting forward ideas for new GP services, or sharing views and thoughts.
To get involved, you could:
- join the Health Action Network and take part in its work; or
- bring your local health issues along to the meetings.
Healthwatch Newcastle helps people speak up about health and social care services in Newcastle, and can provide information about these services.
They help residents have their say on services in many ways: such as their online ‘Feedback Centre’, which allows you to search for local social care and health services, as well as review and rate them, using a star system. They also have an app for smartphones and tablets to make reviews even easier. The app is available for Android, Windows and iPhone. Just search for ‘Healthwatch Newcastle’ in the relevant app store.
The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has a members forum which is made up of people who represent their local community and reflect a variety of different views.
You may want to become a member if you are interested in finding out about the Hospitals Trust’s current and future proposals and want to contribute to some of the projects. You can comment through the How did we do link or to get involved, you could register and:
- attend events to see what goes on behind the scenes at the hospitals;
- receive information about the hospitals’ plans and developments via a members only website and newsletter;
- join specific projects and give your views on services;
- stand for election to the Members Council (the governing body for the Hospitals Trust); and
- vote for your representatives on the Members Council.
There is a new opportunity to influence services for patients and carers – Advising on Patient Experience. Contact 0191 213 9622 or 0191 223 1214.
Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust
Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust provides a wide range of mental health, disability and substance misuse services.
To get involved, you could register and:
- receive regular information about the Trust;
- give your views on the Trust’s future plans and your ideas to make things better for everyone who uses its services;
- have your say on issues that interest you;
- elect people to the Council of Governors (which represents the views of the members); and
- stand for election to the Council of Governors.
Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)
Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) provides support and information to patients, their families and carers, and helps to sort out any problems or concerns about NHS services and the care they receive from any health care service.
Last updated: November 15, 2018