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Health Reference Group

Who we are

NHS Thanet (CCG) is committed to working with patients and public to improve healthcare for all patients living and working in Thanet.

As part of this commitment the CCG has developed a number of opportunities for patients to support  the development of services and commissioning plans, which include:public meetings, collecting experience and views through the Health  Network and listening to patients and carers about services with our Esther ambassadors. We also hold our Governing body and Primary Care Commissioning Committee in public and welcome questions.

In addition to these opportunities for patients and stakeholders to input into local health services, the CCG has set up our Health Reference Group (HRG). This is a permanent advisory group that forms an integral part of the CCG’s planning and decision making processes.

The HRG provides a regular opportunity for patient representatives to influence the design and delivery of health care services across  Thanet Clinical Commissioning Group. The representatives enable issues raised by patients, carers and members of the public to contribute to the identification of local healthcare priorities and the commissioning of local health care services. The Health Reference Group also supports the CCG with engagement projects and gives feedback on our plans and communication to ensure things are written in plain English, non jargon and are clear

The HRG is formed by 15 representatives which include the chairs of  Patient Participation Groups (PPGs) representing practices across Thanet, with the remaining members of Thanet HRG come from local voluntary and community sector organisations who help us to ensure that the quieter voices from our local communities are heard.

 To support the link between the HRG and the insights gathered, and other CCG standing committees, such as Quality and Assurance, the CCG patient and public lay member, Clive Hart, chairs the HRG and champions the patient and public voice at each committee and governing body meeting to check that the formation is received and listened to.

What do we do?

The HRG acts to represent the voices of Thanet patients, public and stakeholders. They work with the CCG commissioners to support them around public and patient involvement in the CCG’s commissioning intentions.

Some of the work the HRG has been involved in includes:

  • Shared care records (to ensure that the voice of patients is heard in the design of shared electronic records between health and social care professionals).
  • Project scoping for testing for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in primary care.
  • Supporting the development of the CCG’s five-year strategy, including out-of-hospital care services.
  • Mapping patient pathways to support the development of the future CCG mental health strategy.