A good start but lots more work to do

Matthew Shaw shares his perspective on the first meeting of the NHS Future Forum.

So, today was the day when the meeting of minds happened in the NHS Future Forum.

The risk of being part of such a group is that you wonder whether there will be any listening done and hence any changes made. So was this just going through the motions?

I am really pleased to say that the day was productive and there was heated debate concerning some of the key issues. There was a diversity of people present and for those concerned about this being a whitewash: from my point of view it didn’t feel like it. However, the devil will be in the detail of the report!

To make an aspirational system I think you need to make courageous changes and the Bill certainly does this.

The concerns I have always had is that we continue to deliver a fair and free system at the point of entry, we maintain training and education standards and that commissioning does not get in the way of the doctor patient relationship and is done to a high standard.

I have been reassured regarding the first but we have some way to go on the second and third points.

There is no doubt that knowledge is power and what becomes more obvious the longer I work in the NHS is that there is lots of data, but little information. Without this knowledge intelligent commissioning will not happen and hence the system will not work.

A good start but lots more work to do.

Matthew Shaw is Consultant Spinal Surgeon, Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital; and Co-founder, Remedy UK. He is sitting on the Forum’s education and training theme.

In NHS Future Forum: Pausing, listening, reflecting, improving | Tagged ,

4 Responses to A good start but lots more work to do

  1. francesco Palma says:

    Uncertain how the first point got onto the agenda, this is surely beyond the remit of the forum, what would be good would be to have a patients blog or commentary from the patient representative on the forum. The composition of the forum is too high ended in favour of the delivery side of services, this is understood but given that NHS complaints have reached record levels, having a comsumer focus on delivery of services would be a step in the right direction.

  2. Kate@DH says:

    All the members of the NHS Future Forum, including those who represent patients, will have the opportunity to share their thoughts on the listening exercise over the next few weeks. The website will have all the latest developments as they happen.

    • rosemary whitbread says:

      How many patient representatives are there? Who are these patient representatives, how were they chosen, what gives them the authority to represent me and how do I contact them?

      How are these representatives getting the views of patients?

      The answers to all of these questions should be available and easy for the public to find.

      So, where are the answers to these questions posted? What steps have been taken to inform the general public(ie the patients) of how they can contact their representaitve (s)?

      Please let me know urgently as I am the Secretary of our Patient participation group and we wish to put this information on our notice board.

    • Kate@DH says:

      A list of Future Forum members is available on the Forum members page and this website carries regular news of how the Forum is engaging with patients and the public. Forum members are really keen to hear from everyone who wants to have their concerns heard and comments can be submitted via this website or by email to nhsfutureforum@dh.gsi.gov.uk.

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