Despite all my complaints as a teenager to the contrary, Dorset is quite forward thinking, and it has demonstrated this in its approach to transformation in the local NHS. In mid-2014, the Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) decided to take pre-emptive action to maintain health and wellbeing, quality services and to avoid a looming gap in local NHS finances and began a Clinical Services Review (CSR). With the aim of supporting people in Dorset to lead healthier lives, Dorset CCG recognized that significant, meaningful and effective engagement and involvement with local people who use services was essential. As with any project on this scale, engagement and involvement needs to be multifaceted. I was most involved in one these facets, as Chair of the Patient, (Carer) and Public Engagement Group (PPEG).
As the national conversation moves apace around Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) and calls for engagement, involvement and coproduction grow louder, I wanted to share our learning in this context. We didn't get everything right, but I am really proud of the impact of the PPEG.