Bradford NHS commissioners have set up a People’s Board to provide a sounding board for their policy and service design ideas.

The People’s Board is a new pilot initiative designed to build on the strong foundations of patient and public involvement already in place at the local NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).

The CCGs decided they wanted local people to have even closer involvement in their work by getting direct feedback from them on plans for new services and significant changes.

Now, 18 citizens from across Bradford, who have been selected through a rigorous recruitment process, will provide assurance and advice on the delivery of relevant CCG programmes of work.

In particular, the group will support delivery of the CCGs’ Five Year Forward View plan, which includes proposals to transform healthcare services and deliver care closer to people’s homes.

Max Mclean, lay member for patient and public involvement at Bradford City CCG, said:

“This is a really exciting and ground-breaking initiative; the People’s Board will strengthen and champion patient and public participation across the CCGs, providing a sounding board for important plans to improve local services.

“The development of the People’s Board has grown through our involvement with patients, carers and the public through the patient networks and our community engagement. It’s a bold new way for the CCGs to get real-time, grassroots feedback which can influence the decisions our governing bodies and clinical boards make.”

The group will meet on a monthly basis until 2017, when the pilot scheme will be reviewed. Development of the People’s Board is being supported independently by Sam Keighley, from Action for Communities Ltd.

Key areas of work for the group will be around:

  • influence: creating two-way dialogue to inform the CCGs’ decisions
  • greater transparency: holding the CCGs to account and improving feedback
  • involvement and reach: making sure we hear and involve all Bradford communities
  • effective activity: building trust to have effective discussions and actions.