Ealing Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is trying to encourage more people to get involved in local healthcare decisions by joining the Patient Participation Group (PPG) attached to their GP surgery.
The CCG say that through these groups, patients and carers can highlight issues affecting the local population, influence their GP and local health care providers, and help deliver improved health outcomes.
For people who are already members, they may want to represent their PPG at a ‘Network PPG’.
Ealing CCG, in partnership with Healthwatch Ealing, have set up seven Network PPGs across the borough to bring together representatives from the practice based PPGs.
Zereen Rahman-Jennings, patient and public engagement and equalities manager at Ealing CCG, said: “We strongly encourage people from all ages and backgrounds to get involved in their practice PPGs and find out what it’s all about.
“It’ll be a chance to meet other patients and carers, learn about local health initiatives, hear about examples of achievements and an opportunity to make a difference in partnership with the practice team.”
Healthwatch Waling director Suzanne Lyn-Cook said: “PPGs have an important part to play in working with practices to make real changes.
"As patients, we tend to talk a lot about things but rarely get involved in problem-solving. PPGs can be the platform for raising awareness of patient issues, as well as giving patients an opportunity to find out what’s going on in the practice and the wider NHS.”
Keith Marshall, chair of a Network PPG group in the north of Ealing, added: “Genuine patient involvement is critical to the development of both GP practices and NHS commissioning.
“The aim of PPGs is to ensure the voice of patients is heard and their views used to help shape and deliver high-quality primary care services.”