The Communication and Engagement Strategy sets out our approach to communicating with stakeholders and the public and involving local people in changes to NHS services in Telford & Wrekin. Its effective delivery will ensure that patient views are at the heart of the services we commission. We will develop a wide ranging programme of engagement, which enables measureable involvement to ensure that the CCG listens and responds, and influences the commissioning decisions of the CCG.
Our strategy is informed by the CCGs five and two year commissioning plans, the organisational development plan and by the local engagement and consultation work already undertaken. The strategy will be supported by a set of robust policies which will include a media policy, social media policy and corporate brand guidelines.
Whilst we will ensure we adhere to policies for good governance, this strategy will not be prescriptive in the methods to be used for particular audiences, we want to encourage innovative and genuine engagement according to the subject area we are discussing. What we do advocate is a set of principles and objectives to act as a guide for commissioners thinking about and designing their communication and engagement plans. At its conception the CCG had agreed the guiding principles it would follow in communication and engagement. These were ratified and further developed in a joint event with patients and carers and enshrined in the Patient Magna Charter, a copy of which is prominently displayed in our CCG headquarters.
As a CCG we will undertake effective and accessible engagement with people in general, but also where required with people who have specific protected characteristics as set out in the Equality Act 2010 and our Equality & Inclusion Strategy 2015-19.
Communication and Engagement throughout the Commissioning Cycle
Commissioning is the process of arranging continuous improvements to services. This helps the CCG to deliver the best possible quality and outcomes for patients, meet the needs of the local health population and reduce inequalities with the resources available. Commissioning can be divided into three distinct parts of a continuous cycle:
Strategic planning – planning the optimum services which meet national standards and local ambitions, ensuring patients and the public are involved in the process alongside other key stakeholders and the range of health professionals who contribute to patient care;
Specifying outcomes and procuring – securing services, using the contracting route that will deliver the best quality and outcomes and promote shared decision making, patient choice and integration; we will involve patients and carers in development of service outcomes and as appropriate throughout the procurement process
Managing demand and performance – monitoring, assessing and where necessary, challenging the quality of services and using this intelligence to design and plan continuously improving services for the future. We will actively seek and act on patient feedback, both collected via the CCG engagement activities and through PALs, Complaints and provider or National Surveys.
In the diagram below we show what engagement and communications the CCG expects to see at each stage of the commissioning cycle:
CCG Stakeholders and Stakeholder Mapping
The key to successful communication and engagement is recognising and understanding who our stakeholders are and the most effective way to communicate with them.
Our stakeholders include, but are not limited to, the following groups:
GP practice members
Partner organisations: (NHS England, Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Telford and Wrekin Council, Healthwatch Telford & Wrekin
Provider organisations: Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust, West Midlands Ambulance Trust, Midlands Partnership Foundation Trust, Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Health Foundation Trust, Shropdoc (NB there are other multiple smaller providers according to the area of commissioning)
Influencers (councillors, MPs, Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Media, Health & Wellbeing Board Leads
Voluntary sector (Age UK, CVS)
- Professional Bodies (Local Medical Council, Local Pharmaceutical Committee)
Understanding our stakeholders needs is vital in everything we do to understand the impact of the CCGs plans and decisions may have on them and vice versa.
All executives and deputies have the responsibility to ensure the service redesign and commissioning functions of their teams have due regard to both the principles of engagement and the legal requirement.
The individual commissioners have support in order to engage and involve patients and the public in their service redesign, it includes:-
- Communication and Engagement Supporting Brief
- Communication and Engagement Plan Template
- List of contacts for vulnerable groups
- Engagement Feedback form - How was it for you
- Project Tracker