"I am delighted to take up the post of Chair of the PCC; and I am looking forward to leading the PCC in these exciting but very challenging times for health and social care...
I would like to take this opportunity to thank my fellow Board Members, Bill Halliday, Seána Talbot, Joan McEwan, Liz Cuddy and Martin Reilly for their warm welcome to the PCC; and to pay tribute to my predecessor, Professor Maureen Edmondson, and to Professor Hugh McKenna, Dr May McCann, and Brian Compston, for their staunch advocacy on behalf of the PCC over their long tenure. I’d also like formally to recognise Louise Skelly’s sterling contribution over many years; and Glynis Henry’s tireless work over recent months in managing a difficult transition. This is public service of a high order; people in Northern Ireland have benefitted greatly from it.
I am look forward to working closely with the PCC Staff Team led by Vivian McConvey, who joins us as Chief Executive in April; and to welcoming our new PCC Board Members in April.
Our Health and Social Care system belongs to us all- to every one in Northern Ireland; we each have a responsibility to do what we can to make it the very best that it can be.
Service Users and Carers (or Patients and Clients) and their families who depend on HSC understand from personal experience the pressing need for change in many aspects of the system. Many want to be able to participate and to contribute meaningfully to the fundamental changes that are now underway.
I believe that the PCC has a key role to play in making this happen so that Service Users’ and Carers’ knowledge, experience and expertise is taken seriously; that concerns and ideas can be reported, and that action results.
I want everyone who uses, or who works in, the HSC system to know that the PCC will work constructively with them, towards the vision of a transformed Health and Social Care system, delivering world class care to all in Northern Ireland.
Over the coming months, we will continue to support and facilitate people in direct participation in a variety of ways in HSC structures and processes; and in reaching positive resolutions in the complaints processes. This is in keeping with the proud tradition of the PCC.
We will deepen and intensify our work alongside the Department of Health, the Health and Social Care Board, the Public Health Agency, the Health and Social Care Trusts and the NI Ambulance Service, and community, voluntary and professional organisations in taking forward the major programmes of work around Delivering Together, the Hyponatremia Inquiry Recommendations, the consultation on the “Power to People” Report; and around other key issues.
Next month sees the 10th Anniversary of the PCC’s creation. It is a time for celebration, and for a look at what the PCC has done well.
It’s also time to look ahead: what should we be doing, and how, in this changing world? How do we enable the PCC to make the most effective contribution possible to the challenges facing the Health and Social Care system?
We are determined that the PCC will continue to be a worthwhile investment of public resources so that you can be confident that your ideas and experiences are being heard and acted upon, where it matters. We will work together so that your voice is listened to in your local and regional HSC services and in the Department of Health.
So we are asking all users of our health and social care services, and all those who work in them, to tell us what their experience has been; and what changes you would like to see in how the PCC works, and what we do in future. Change takes time, and results will not be immediately obvious, but we have to start somewhere!
So please contact the PCC (email@example.com ; or tweet @PatientClient) and let us know your views: we are listening!"
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