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Lancashire and South Cumbria to benefit from national funding to help patients have their say on health services

11th September 2018

A windfall of £450,000 to support practical and innovative ways to help patients improve health services has been announced nationally.

The funding will provide tailored support for co-production in Lancashire and South Cumbria, helping to more easily involve patients and carers in designing the services they use.

To date, the Building Health Partnerships programme, delivered by the Institute of Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) and Social Enterprise UK (SEUK), has helped communities to bring together patients with local, voluntary, community and social enterprise groups.

This has included:

  • Gaining recognition for the role of mental health peer support workers in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight
  • Helping healthcare professionals bring carers into conversations about patients in Herefordshire and Worcestershire
  • Making it easier for organisations that plan local health services to support community groups by developing a shared set of aims or “outcome measures” in Humber, Coast and Vale
  • A new programme to get early diagnosis for people with lung diseases in Essex

Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria will bring local groups and key decision makers together to put patients at the heart of decision-making, being supported by a series of externally facilitated sessions.

Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, Lancashire County Council Director for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: “It is important we work with local people, patients, voluntary community organisations and the public sector to develop new ways of supporting people in our communities to live longer, healthier lives. The support Lancashire and South Cumbria will receive from the Building Health Partnerships programme will help us to do this by bringing communities and health care professionals together.”

Michael MacDonnell, Director of System Transformation at NHS England, said: “It’s important we work as closely as we can with a variety of community groups to ensure we get the richest input into designing services. The voices and views of a range of people from different backgrounds and circumstances can really make a difference to the solutions we find.”

Gemma Bull, Director of the Big Lottery Fund said: “People with real experience of living with health conditions have the insight into what support is needed. We’re pleased that National Lottery funding will be used to bring people and communities together with healthcare professionals to design services that really work for them.”

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