The COVID-19 outbreak has posed fundamental challenges to how we go about meeting our usual duties to engage and communicate with our local communities and we have prioritised the health, safety and welfare of patients, staff and wider society in our response to the pandemic.
At North East Hampshire and Farnham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) we know that service provision can be improved if we can learn more about the views, experiences and concerns of patients, service users, carers and our wider communities.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all and caused many organisations to change the way they are working. One challenge for us has been how we continue to carry out the high standards of local engagement activity we would normally be working towards, whilst prioritising the health, safety and welfare of everyone.
Following the introduction of social distancing and in line with government and NHS England advice, we postponed all face-to-face engagement activity in March 2020. We do however recognise a continued and critical need to engage and have had a continued constructive dialogue with local people and patients throughout this time. We continue to monitor the situation in light of any new guidance which may allow us to resume more traditional forms of engagement work.
We are committed to being an organisation that delivers the best possible health and wellbeing outcomes for people who live within our local communities. This means adapting to new ways of working, ensuring a local focus but with the additional benefits of support, sharing good practice and learning across the Frimley Collaborative of CCGs and the wider Frimley Health and Care Integrated Care System (ICS).
We thought you may be interested to understand the ways in which we have engaged with a wide range of stakeholders (that’s those with an interest or concern in our organisation), patients, carers and the public throughout the pandemic. We have adopted a phased approach, recognising the constant need to adapt and evolve to an ever changing situation and would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone involved in this work for their patience, time and flexibility.
PHASE ONE – April-September 2020
Phase One (April – September 2020) involved three distinct pieces of work alongside a range of on-going engagement and communication activity: