Here at Delib we like change, and we like democracy. With the NHS arguably experiencing it’s greatest overhaul since it’s conception in 1948, I thought I would share some ideas for engaging patients and other stakeholders in 2012.

The NHS Operating Framework puts patients at the centre of decision making with their experience of health and supporting care services central to the drive for further improvements. Patient engagement will be a key part of the new look NHS; add this to the emphasised ideals and healthcare professionals face rapidly approaching hurdles on the horizon.

New digital strategies can engage and involve patients and other stakeholders, proving a cost effective addition to traditional methods, with the ability to reach some groups that wouldn’t be reached by traditional means. Lambeth Health and Wellbeing Board has recently been delving into this with gusto, as covered here by Guardian Healthcare.

The Department of Health has also been using digital engagement to reach stakeholders across the country, and the current Trusts and PCT’s are linked to this consultation hub (provided by us using Citizen Space – hassle-free software for managing and running all consultation and engagement activity across your organisation).

Meanwhile, although long-established (1978), the National Association for Patient Participation (NAPP) has great case studies and practical advice for GPs, particularly relevant since a General Medical Services contract change in April 2011 requires GP practices to involve patients and undertake local surveys.

GP practices in Stockport are taking advantage of Citizen Space to run their local surveys. The system has been adopted by Stockport PCT, and can be used across the PCT, including by GP practices and other affiliated providers at no additional cost.

We’re speaking to lots of NHS organisations who want to engage more effectively with their stakeholders. If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of using Citizen Space, please get in touch or request a demo