Tuesday, December 12, 2006

PPI is dead

The Department of Health published A stronger local voice in July which set out five key elements to enable us to create a stronger voice for local people in influencing the health and social care services in their area. These plans included proposals to establish Local Involvement Networks (LINks), which will gather the views and experiences of people on their health and social care services, as well as plans to update the requirements of NHS bodies to involve and consult patients and the public.

A stronger local voice posed five questions, and sought comments from stakeholders about how these plans could best be implemented. I am delighted that we received almost 500 responses, demonstrating the commitment and engagement of people working in this field. We greatly value this input, especially the views of people currently working within the PPI system, as their input will be vital to successfully establishing Local Involvement Networks. Amongst the responses there were many practical suggestions relating to the five questions posed. In addition, stakeholders raised other questions, and asked for further information on how LINks, for example, will operate.

The responses we have received have been vital to us in the development of our proposals. The attached document seeks to address the comments and questions we have received, and demonstrate how we have used these to develop and improve the system of patient and public involvement. I believe that our proposals represent several key improvements to the
involvement system which will deliver a more powerful voice to local people.
One of the most significant changes is that the structure of LINks will allow a far greater number of people to become involved in shaping their health and social care services. This is vital in ensuring that providers, commissioners, Overview
and Scrutiny Committees, and the regulators take real account of LINks’ views.

The Public Patient Involvement Forums were created in 2003 for Patients and Public to have a voice , as good as they have been they have had little impact in guiding the decision making of the NHS and it's allied bodies, looking through this proposal it appears that there is some substance behind this and it could provide the public with more of a say and the NHS Chief Executives much accountablilty of which the system is currently lacking, there would have to be an end to the short term  contract, big salaried "Troubleshooters" who currently burden the NHS with their quick fix methods and huge wage packets.