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Four-in-10 ICBs have no formal patient involvement

Four-in-10 ICBs have no formal patient involvement
By Jess Hacker
5 September 2023

Around four-in-10 ICBs in England have no formal patient involvement in meetings and subcommittees, new data has revealed.

And the worst examples of patient engagement were in the midlands and the south, while ICBs in the north east of England have sufficiently integrated patient insight into their decision making.

The Medical Technology Group (MTG) – who obtained the data via a Freedom of Information (FOI) request – has now called on all NHS regions to ‘properly consult patients’ as to how to improve outcomes.

Published in a report today (5 September) the results of the FOI indicate that 25 of the 42 ICSs have a formal patient representative at board and sub-committee meetings.

A further five ICBs are yet to publish a strategy for working with people and communities, while those that do have one in place may still lack patient representation on their board.

Given as an example of best practice, Cornwall and the Isle of Scilly ICB was praised for its Health and care vignettes’ held at each board meeting, which involves a presentation from a HealthWatch representative.

The report also highlighted Derby and Derbyshire ICB’s 37 patient and public partner (PPP) roles who offer feedback on existing services and contribute to quality improvement efforts.

The MTG recommended NHS England better incentivise ICBs to involve patients.

They also argued that the Care Quality Commission (CQC) should be given more freedom to scrutinise an ICB’s patient involvement.

In the report, the MTG also recommended ICBs ensure that patient feedback loops are properly established and to include a standing item on their board meetings to consider patient voices.

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