Over the past six months we have been working with Hackney Council to help them with the development of a local Healthwatch in Hackney. The new organisation will be launched on 1 April 2013. Hackney was keen to find out what local stakeholders in health, social care and the voluntary and community sector want to get out of Healthwatch in terms of improving health outcomes for local people and to involve them in developing a new and vibrant organisation, learning from both the successes and failures of earlier models of patient and public engagement.
On Hackney Council’s behalf we interviewed 29 key stakeholders to reflect on what was working well at the moment and what might be done differently in the future. We wrote a detailed report on our findings including guidance on the legal, practical and governance issues around establishing a new organisation and we made a number of recommendations to the Council.
The Council has since agreed to establish Healthwatch in Hackney as a social enterprise (a Community Interest Company), to appoint a Chair in December 2012 and to procure company management services to support Healthwatch.
Continuing the dialogue
Today sees the launch of a new project website, hosted by MAC, which aims to continue the conversation with local organisations, patients, carers and the public,whilst Hackney Healthwatch is being developed. The website includes background information about Healthwatch, both nationally and in Hackney, and news on progress towards the establishment of the new organisation. Over the next few months we will be running a number of short surveys in order to seek the views of local people and organisations as part of a process of identifying the priorities for the new organisation.
Please take a look and let us know what you think. If you live or work in Hackney, why not sign up for the newletter?
The Moore Adamson Craig Partnership supports user and public participation, trains lay representatives and develops responsive health, care and education organisations. We look forward to the citizens of Hackney going on to make their local Healthwatch an active and effective body.