Judith Brodie has joined the PRSB as a patient engagement consultant. She talks to us about her new role and why she got involved with the organisation.

What will your work at the PRSB involve?

The PRSB has a strong commitment to patient and public engagement, which is evident through the work it has been doing so far. While the organisation has been making great strides in this area, I have come on board to strengthen the patient engagement work. I started working with PRSB last year when I joined the assurance committee, which gave me the opportunity to contribute and offer patient insight. I’ve now joined as a consultant, as the PRSB seeks to develop its work in this area. My role will be to look at everything the organisation is currently doing, but through the lens of the public and patients. I will be looking at the ways we can get patients even more integrated into PRSB activities and support them in making recommendations for change.

Why do you feel so passionately about patients and citizens being involved in their own care?

Health and social care is all about the individual. I think it’s sad that sometimes in a system under intense pressure that can be lost. In our lives we’re all patients and we’re all citizens. To be in a position to make a difference to patients is why most people join health and care organisations in the first place, so it’s really important that patient voices are heard. Increasingly, more and more people are getting involved in their own care. For example, we have older and disabled people getting personal care budgets and people going on self-management courses for long-term conditions. Patients want to be partners in their own care so it’s really important that the system supports this. Personalised care is like a positive circle. Engaged patients who are able to self-manage rely on healthcare providers less, and are happier and healthier as a result.

Why are standardised records such an important part of enabling better personalised care and self management?

If you have a long-term condition, it’s really important that you work in partnership with everyone involved in your care so that you can self-manage as far as possible, and get the right treatment when needed. Good and accurate records means that information on your history is available in one place, enabling healthcare providers to offer better and safer care. It also means patients can see what’s been recorded about them, enabling them to play a much bigger role in working with specialists. PRSB is a really critical player in making that become a reality.

It’s well known that when there’s a transition in the patient journey, things are more at risk of breaking down. Whether you’re being transferred from hospital to the community or another service, communication is crucial. PRSB is facilitating the smooth and accurate transferring of information with the patient, making the system less vulnerable to errors. This is where I believe technology can make a huge difference.

To find out more about our work with patient engagement, please contact Judith.brodie@theprsb.org

 

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