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Health and Social Care Review - Make Your Voice Count, Urges Provost

1 November 2011

People living in the North West will have a chance to make their voices heard and opinions count when the first in a series of public consultation meetings organised as part of a review of Health and Social Care Services in Northern Ireland takes place at the University's Magee campus next Tuesday, November 8.

The review was announced earlier this year by Minister for Health, Social Services and Public Safety, Edwin Poots who appointed a panel of five external advisers to provide expert advice and independent assurance.

Professor Deirdre Heenan, Provost and Dean of Academic Development at Ulster’s Magee campus and  member of the Review advisory appeal has urged people to come along to next week’s consultation meeting at Magee.

“Health and social care is something we should all be concerned about as it affects all of us. Health and Social Care services in Northern Ireland are facing unprecedented challenges to deliver high quality, fair, accessible and cost effective health and social care so if you have something to say about the provision of health and social care services in Northern Ireland, this is the chance to make your opinion known and possibly help shape the future of health and social care services,” says Professor Heenan.

She continues: “The Review panel has been asked to assess all aspects of health and social care services on the present quality and accessibility of services; the extent to which the needs of patients, clients, carers and communities are being met by existing arrangements; and to make recommendations on future delivery of services in hospital, primary care, community or other settings.

“The Health and Social Care services provided must be fit for purpose. It is important that we get as much input as possible, both from people using the services and from service providers.”

Other members of the advisory panel are Professor Chris Ham (Chief Executive of the King's Fund), Dr Ian Rutter (General Practitioner), Paul Simpson (retired senior civil servant) and Mark Ennis (Executive Chair of SSE Ireland).

The public consultation meeting will take place in the Great Hall, University of Ulster Magee Campus from 7 – 9 pm on Tuesday, November 8 2011.

Notes to Editors

Everyone will make some use of the health and social care (HSC) service at different times in their lives. Care provided can range from, sophisticated surgery to basic social care in the patient’s home. Within Northern Ireland on a typical day:

28,000 people see a family doctor or practice nurse;

20,000 people visit a community pharmacy where around 84,186 prescription items are dispensed;

2,800 new courses of dental treatment are started;

8,500 people are provided with intensive support in their own homes;

12,000 people are receiving a nursing home or residential care package;

7,000 people received a meals service care package;

24,000 people received a Home Help care package; and

2,400 children are looked after in some form of care.