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Health and Well-being news alert Issue 16

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Healthwatch – an update

Follow these links to see some of the key documents that describe the emerging policy for Healthwatch England and Local Healthwatch:

Delivering good commissioning and reducing health inequalities – Free event
When: 25 April 2012 10.15-16.00

Where: London, Baden Powell House

Meet with national and local VCS provider organisations and national and local commissioners to share learning, insights and best practice in order to influence good commissioning and to reduce health inequalities.

Themes of the event
• NHS Commissioning Board & Clinical Commissioning Groups
• What good commissioning looks like
• Citizen, community and voluntary sector engagement
• Tackling health inequalities.

See flyer here [217kB, PDF]

To book your free place and to find out more about the event please visit or email or call 0207 843 6309.


Fit for the Future: Conference for third sector and social enterprises working in health and social care

When: 17th May 2010
Where: Trent Vineyard, Nottingham

There is a promotional code for Regional Voice network members which is RV10 (It’s case sensitive and gives a 15% discount on the early bird ticket prices).

See flyer to book your place.

Delivering Public Health in the Voluntary Sector? – tell your story

PHORCaST (, a UK-wide website designed to promote careers in Public Health, is looking for personal stories from workers in the voluntary sector who have a Public Health aspect to their jobs.

By providing a wide range of stories, they aim to attract people into public health and to show them the variety of ways other people have entered the field, what they do, and why they enjoy it.

You can see one or two stories on PHORCaST at:

If you would like to share your story of how you do public health in the voluntary sector you can write it up yourself, using a question guide (see below) to help shape your story, or you can tell your story over the phone. If you would like to do this over the phone, please contact Lyn Stone ( to arrange a convenient time to chat. In this case your response will be written down and returned to you for checking before sign-off.

You can share your story anonymously, if you prefer.

See the story guide here [378kB, DOC]

Working with Service Users to Improve Services
Guide for commissioners on how NHS staff and service users can work together to improve services

The findings of a three year collaborative pilot study, Beyond Consultation have been launched. The project supported African service users and NHS staff to work together to improve sexual health and HIV services in London.

The project produced a new step-by-step guide to help commissioners engage both staff and service users in identifying and acting on service improvements. It is of particular interest to anyone who wants to strengthen service-user engagement, and in particular engage seldom heard groups in shaping health services.

See the guide here

Government appoints independent group to look at impact of NHS Constitution

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has announced the formation of a new independent expert panel, led by Professor Steve Field, leader of the NHS Future Forum, which will contribute to a Government report on the NHS Constitution.

The NHS Future Forum Working Group on the NHS Constitution is made up of medical professionals, patient champions, staff representatives and charities. At the meeting, the group began to consider what effect the NHS Constitution has had for patients and staff since it was launched in 2009.

Andrew Lansley has also asked the new Future Forum group to advise him whether there is any scope for strengthening the NHS Constitution to support high quality services for patients. A public consultation later this year will give patients and staff the opportunity to have their say about what can be done to improve and reinforce the Constitution.

Read more here

Human Rights in Healthcare

The Equality and Human Rights Commission recently launched a major review of human rights in the UK. As part of the review they have produced some video case studies with organisations such as Mersey Care NHS Trust talking about the value to patients and service users of a human rights approach.

The health care related case studies can be seen here 

Plan to help pupils get more help from the school nurse

A new report “Getting it right for children, young people and families”, includes plans to raise the profile of the school nurse and give them a greater role in improving care for children and young people.

School nurses have a crucial role to play in healthcare during school years providing advice on obesity, teenage pregnancy and the harms caused by drugs and alcohol.

For further information, see here


New health maps to drive children’s health improvements

The NHS Atlas of Variation in Healthcare for Children and Young People maps out the variation in healthcare for 25 different child health issues across England, including asthma, epilepsy and diabetes. The Atlas will help hospitals, community services, PCTs and emerging clinical commissioning groups see how their area compares to others around the country, and put plans in place to make improvements if needed.

For further information see here


End of life care services letting down lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people say leading charities

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGB&T) people report feeling let down by end of life care services, according to a new report by the National Council for Palliative Care (NCPC) and the Consortium of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Voluntary and Community Organisations.

The report, ‘Open to all? Meeting the needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people nearing the end of life’, draws on a survey of over 700 hospices, care homes and hospitals, as well as clinicians and service users. It provides a unique insight into perceptions of end of life care for the 22,000 LGB&T people who die each year.

Many LGB&T people do not feel that end of life care services are open to them and are concerned that they will face discrimination and a lack of understanding from health and social care providers when they are dying.
See more here