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Getting the voice of the people into the Success Regime

19 April 2016

A meeting held this morning in Chelmsford has outlined how health bosses are going to listen to the people of Essex when considering the redesign of services in the county as part of a programme known as ‘the Success Regime’.

At the event hosted by Essex County Council’s Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HOSC) and Healthwatch Essex, delegates heard that the Success Regime will transform health services in mid and south Essex, and yet for many people it may just be a vague term that they have heard mentioned, or it may mean nothing to them at all.

But the impact the Success Regime will have on their health services will be fundamental and long-lasting, which is why it is important that the patients, carers and users of health services have a say.

“That’s what we’re here for,” explained Dr Tom Nutt, Chief Executive of Healthwatch Essex. “We were established to ensure the voice of those people who use health and care services are heard by the decision-makers.

“The Success Regime must capture the views of people to help shape how they meet the needs of patients, carers and service users. We work hard to capture the ‘lived experience’ of people – what people actually find when they visit a GP, hospital, care home etc.”

The conference this morning looked to find the best ways ‘Citizen Engagement’ can be an integral part of the process that guides the decisions made as part of the Success Regime.

As well as Healthwatch Essex and members of the HOSC, the conference was also attended by representatives from patient engagement groups, health commissioners and providers, and the community and voluntary sector.

Cllr Jill Reeves, Chairman of HOSC, said: “We have to see the Success Regime as an opportunity to deliver improved and consistent clinical care for all and the HOSC wants to help ensure that, despite the financial pressures on the NHS, there is meaningful engagement with the public.”

Andy Vowles, Programme Director for the Essex Success Regime outlined what the Success Regime would look like and how the changes would impact on services. He also highlighted the need – stressing that if nothing were done to change the way services are delivered, by the end of the year 2018/19 the deficit would rise to over £200million.

Details of how the Success Regime will engage and consult with local people were outlined, with the timetable highlighting an important period of discussion over the summer before formal consultations are likely to begin in September.