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Local independent health and care champion chosen to help citizens shape future NHS in Surrey

Local people will have the opportunity to shape the future of the NHS in Surrey thanks to new Citizen Ambassador roles being created by Healthwatch Surrey.

The independent watchdog has been selected to recruit seven Citizen Ambassadors to enable local people’s voices to be properly heard as local health and care leaders shape the future of NHS and social care services in Surrey.

Citizen Ambassadors will be able to bring a constructive and independent perspective to the work of seven transformation programmes. They will be paid roles for up to 10 hours/month and will be advertised towards the end of November.

Kate Scribbins, Healthwatch Surrey Chief Executive said:

“We are really excited that the health and social care system recognise the value that our independence and experience will bring in helping to ensure the voices and needs of local people – citizens – remain at the heart of discussions and plans about the future of services.

“It is a great opportunity to truly embed the role of local people in the development of the local NHS and builds on work we have already been doing to develop patient leaders and use patient feedback to improve services.”

The contract has been awarded by Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership:

Sarah Parker, Director of Transformation at Surrey Heartlands said:

“We are delighted with Healthwatch Surrey’s support. Citizen Ambassadors will be invaluable in supporting our social research and co-design of health and care. We want services in Surrey Heartlands to be underpinned by understanding what the public we serve need. In particular we need to understand what we can do differently in prevention, earlier intervention and more effective post care support. What would care in the future look like to you and how can you help us shape this? Being a Citizen Ambassador will help us help others better.”

People can register their interest in the Citizen Ambassador roles on the Healthwatch Surrey website, by text message (SMS) on 07592 787 533 or via the telephone Helpdesk on 0303 303 0023 (local rate).