Be Involved In Your Healthcare
There are many ways you can become more involved in your healthcare. Read on to find out more.
1. Join a Patient Group
There are a number of ways within NHS North East Essex that you can join as a public or patient representative. For more information, contact Tricia Cassidy on 01206 286831 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Come along to a Board meeting and Open to Question session
3. Take part in patient surveys and consultations
4. Current developments and future plans for Patient and Public Involvement
• Be honest with patients and the public and actively involve them using a variety of methods.
The NHS North East Essex strategy for communicating with patients and the public can be downloaded here Patient and Public Engagement Strategy (Adobe Acrobat - 292 Kb).
The NHS Centre for Involvement's website www.nhscentreforinvolvement.nhs.uk is a good resource for turning patient and public involvement into everyday practice.
Volunteers devote many thousands of hours to helping NHS North East Essex. Their help and hard work enable clinical and administration staff to use their time and professional skills more effectively.
Volunteers come from all walks of life but many are people who have taken early retirement or, conversely, people thinking of returning to work and see volunteering as a way of getting back their confidence before re-entering the workplace.
On average each volunteer contributes approximately 3-4 hours of their own time each week, carrying out a wide variety of tasks. Importantly, they have the time to stop and chat with patients – support that is really valued by patients and staff alike.
Volunteers have their own individual skills and, by working alongside staff, they enhance the whole service for the benefit of patients. The voluntary services department identifies the needs of staff and patients and matches the volunteers to those needs. To do this, we keep in mind what each of our volunteers is hoping to achieve as well as their personal preferences, qualities and skills.
Volunteers will give assistance, but will not take the place of paid members of staff.
But whatever tasks they undertake as volunteers, the time and effort given by these local people is greatly appreciated by the Trust and our patients.
Services and Support
Our volunteers contribute to our services in a vast range of ways from the wards at the hospitals, to reception at Cornerstone, from clerical to helping the patients at lunchtime, and all areas in between. Their help and support is invaluable.
In addition we also have pets as therapy dogs with owners and dogs visiting patients on the wards.
Work experience and observation days
The Human Resources department in Provider services runs the work experience programme for NHS North East Essex. We place students from 16 years upwards on the Trident scheme together with those requesting private placements, back to work placements and students on access courses.
Work experience students are placed on wards and departments throughout NHS North East Essex for either one or two week block placements. These are approved placements and are detailed in the organisation's policy Working With Work Experience Students.
One day observation visits are negotiated for students with a definite interest in a given area of health and are on a one-off basis.
We also hold a one day Sixth Form 'Careers in Health' conference in partnership with local coastal schools.
To find out more about volunteering for NHS North East Essex, work experience or observation placements, contact:
Health Trainer Coordinator
659-662 The Crescent
Colchester Business park
Colchester CO4 9YQ