Ways to get involved

When it comes to commissioning services, we know the best results come from working together with our local communities.

On this page you will find information about the different ways you can be involved in shaping how healthcare is planned and delivered in Kent and Medway.

The CCG has received external funding from NHS England to pilot a citizens’ panel.

We are currently procuring an organisation to work with us to establish this panel and will be recruiting to the panel in spring 2021.

Citizens' panels proactively recruit a representative sample of a population to ensure we can collect feedback from our population including hard to reach groups that may not engage through other channels.

Initially we will aim to recruit around 2,000 people for the Kent and Medway Citizens' Panel.

Members will be actively recruited through a professional market research organisation and enlisted for a time limited period, after which new panel members will be recruited to ensure continued access to fresh views and continued representation to any changing demographic. As the panel has full demographic coverage we can ensure we target specific groups e.g. younger people or people from specific communities to ensure we hear their voices.

Panel members will take part in regular surveys and be invited to take part in other specific engagement activities such as a Health Assembly or project specific task and finish groups. People wanting to remain engaged after their time on the Citizens’ Panel will be able to join the Health Network and continue to be actively engaged.

NHS England funding already received will allow us to establish a panel as a pilot that will need to be evaluated during 2021/22 and options for recurrent funding (to support regular recruitment of new panel members) identified if the pilot proves effective.

We need members of the public who reflect the population in age, ethnicity, gender, location and other demographics to regularly share their views and ideas on a wide range of issues. The information they provide will help us to understand and meet the needs of our local communities and improve the quality of services we offer.

To register your interest please email us.

The Involving Medway community development programme was designed to support the engagement needs of the CCG whilst also actively building community resilience and encouraging community-led initiatives to improve health and wellbeing.

Following a successful pilot in Medway, we are keen to introduce a community development approach to engagement in other areas of Kent.

This model of engagement looks to go above and beyond the basic statutory requirements of CCGs to engage people in service design and changes. It recognises that active engagement can deliver health and wellbeing benefits and support communities to take more active roles in promoting positive physical and mental health behaviours.

In Medway the project has already been used to recruit and train community health researchers from BAME communities to research community views into communications around Covid 19 messages – forming the basis for the Covid community champions initiative led by public health teams at Medway and Kent councils. 

For 2021/22 we are reviewing options for resourcing a Kent and Medway wide model.

A detailed proposal on resourcing options for introducing a Kent and Medway wide community development approach will be developed and taken through the executive team for approval. An option to develop this as an Integrated Care System (ICS) model with contributions from all system partners would be explored as part of developing options.

We propose piloting an online public health assembly to engage key community partners and patient representatives on CCG priority programmes.

A health assembly is a form of large facilitated workshop that takes 40 – 50 participants through a series of discussions on a given topic. The assembly would consist of a range of representative community organisations together with selected members of the public invited through the Citizens’ Panel/Health Network Membership. It would involve half a day of online discussion including selected breakout sessions.

We are planning the next Community Health Assembly for May 2021 and will be focusing on the NHS system changes and CCG priorities for the coming year.

If you're interested in joining, please get in touch with the Engagement team.

As part of our plans to expand the community development approach used in the Involving Medway project, we are planning to establish a larger pool of trained community health researchers to deliver outreach work on specific engagement projects. 

If you'd like to be a community health researcher, please get in touch with our Engagement team.

We are particularly interested in hearing from people interested in helping us specifically improve engagement with hard to reach groups or disadvantaged communities to support addressing health inequalities.  

We've been working with Kent County Council and Medway Council to inform and engage with the community about Covid. The Covid Community Champions have been supporting their local communities.

Monthly meetings are held for the champions to hear from and feed back to the public health teams and clinical leads and a regular bulletin is produced.

  

Find out more and how you can get involved.

Involving Medway is a community development and engagement programme delivered by the CCG engagement team and partners Medway Voluntary Action, Kent Community Foundation and Tempo Time Credits.  It works on specific projects. If you'd like to know how to get involved, please contact the Engagement team.

You can find out more about the work Involving Medway has been doing in the Our involvement work section.

 

The Kent and Medway Health Network is a virtual group of patients, carers, local residents, or representatives from local community, and voluntary groups from across the area. Many of our members were recruited by our former CCGs to assist in improving local health services.

The network’s feedback will helps our CCG decide how our strategic plans can best serve the whole population and how local health services are planned and designed. When becoming a member, you can decide to participate as much or as little as you like.

You will:

  • receive our bulletins so you can stay up-to-date with the health topics that interest you,
  • be offered opportunities to share your ideas and views about local health services,
  • be sent invitations to participate in focus groups, consultations and surveys about healthcare.

To join our health network or subscribe to the Community Bulletin, please email our Engagement Team.

We'll share more news about the network as our plans develop.

We know people care deeply about their local health and care services and are keen to share their views and experience of using services to improve the quality of care we deliver.

We regularly meet with patients and carers in local area groups to hear about how services are working in their area and discuss any plans we have for service improvement. 

Due to the pandemic and social distancing guidance, these meetings happen online at the moment in eight local areas.

The meetings make sure Kent and Medway CCG stays in touch with local communities. They also act as one of many ways in which local communities can help to develop local systems for engagement with the primary care networks and new integrated care partnerships being established in 2020/21.

Local area groups are:

  • Ashford
  • Canterbury and coastal - Canterbury, Herne Bay, Faversham and Whitstable and the rural villages
  • Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley
  • Medway
  • Swale
  • South Kent Coast – Dover, Deal, Sandwich, Folkestone, Hythe and New Romney
  • Thanet - Margate, Broadstairs, Ramsgate and the rural villages
  • west Kent – Maidstone, Tonbridge, Sevenoaks, Tunbridge Wells and the rural towns and villages.

If you would like to know more or get involved please email: kmccg.engage@nhs.net

Our GP practices in Kent and Medway have their own patient groups who work with them to improve services.

The Patient Participation Groups (PPGs) consider how GP services can be improved in their surgeries and liaise with the local community, sharing important health messages.

Some of them hold events and meetings for patients. Please contact your own surgery for more details.

* We hold a regular meeting for the Chairs of Kent and Medway PPGs for them to hear direct from the CCG about developments which will affect patients at their surgeries and take that back to their groups. They are also able to provide the CCG with feedback at these meetings.

Task and finish groups allow people to directly engage on topics of particular interest to them, but do not commit people to a long-term involvement.

They give the NHS access to a targeted audience of people with direct experience of the service they are working on.

Task and finish groups normally consist of 10-12 people who are engaged through a range of tools from focus groups, surveys and workshops and play a key role in reviewing and shaping proposals for service changes and shaping plans for engagement/consultation activity with a wider audience where necessary.

Task and finish groups have regular and in-depth involvement in a project from its early conception through design, decision making and implementation.

If you are interested in registering your interest in a task and finish group on any of our services, please get in touch with the Engagement team.

You can provide feedback on any of our services at any time. We will forward it to the commissioners or providers of those services and use your valued feedback to help us improve services. 

Please email the Engagement team with your feedback.

 

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