Your chance to shape health services across Ashburton
Ashburton Consumer Forum is calling for new members to influence how health services are designed and delivered in the area.
Established in 2016, the forum aims to support everyday people to engage with and influence the way health services are planned and delivered across the Ashburton region.
Jess Timmo, 16, of Allenton joined the forum early last year to provide a youth perspective. “As a consumer of health services you wouldn’t normally have much insight or say in how those services are designed and delivered,” she said.
“But through the forum our feedback is taken into account and we’re encouraged to actively share ideas and experiences so we can make improvements. I really value how inclusive it is.”
The forum is accountable to Canterbury Clinical Network’s (CCN) Ashburton Service Level Alliance (ASLA) and the Ashburton Health Services Manager based at Ashburton hospital.
Jess, who is also Chair of Ashburton Youth Council, says the commitment of attending two-hour meetings every eight weeks is minimal. “The SLA is very understanding of our schedules – it’s not a huge commitment but the benefits are big. It’s a really supportive and flexible environment where I can speak my piece from a youth perspective.
“Now people in the youth council share their thoughts and experiences with me and I feel empowered to share those with the forum when it’s appropriate. It’s about getting everyone involved and contributing towards successes for the greater community.”
In the last three years, Ashburton Consumer Forum has contributed to the work around how patients access urgent care, specifically outside normal working hours.
It’s been pivotal to the success of the #carearoundtheclock campaign, which advises patients to call their usual GP number no matter the time (day or night) to speak to a health professional who can provide advice about what to do and where to go if you need urgent care.
Gordon Guthrie, Chairperson of the Ashburton Service Level Alliance, says the links between the forum, the SLA and the hospital is key to getting health services right for the people of Ashburton.
“Having a consumer voice means that the way services are designed and how they are delivered can be sense-checked by the people who’ll be using them. It also gives our community a space to make suggestions and have a voice when they’re hearing feedback from their communities.”
The group currently has eight vacancies to fill:
- 1 x Child and Youth perspective
- 1 x Older Persons Health and Aged Care perspective
- 1 x Mental Health perspective
- 1 x Maternity Services and Family perspective
- 1 x Maori perspective
- 2 x Pasifika perspectives
- 1 x migrant/ culturally and linguistically diverse perspective
For more information visit the CCN website and view the forum’s terms of reference and the CCN remuneration policy.
To apply for one of the roles, complete the nomination form and submit it to ASLA Facilitator, Hiedee Harris, at Hiedee.Harris@ccn.health.nz by 5pm Friday 12 July.
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