Citizens’ Assembly to improve health and care in Camden restarts

Camden’s first ever Citizens’ Assembly looking at the future of health, care and wellbeing restarted online last week (29 June), giving residents the opportunity to help shape the future of health and social care in the borough.

The health and care Citizens’ Assembly, which began in February, is enabling the Council to work closely with residents, GPs and local hospitals to find ways to make Camden the best place to live and grow now and in the future.

The Assembly is taking place over five sessions and members will participate in a series of events to discuss their top ambitions for health and care services in the borough, before attending a final meeting to agree their recommendations.

All recommendations will then be made to the Council and local NHS organisations to develop the Camden joint health and wellbeing strategy, which will act as a framework for care services in the borough over the next few years.

As the next three sessions of the Assembly will be held online, to ensure those who don’t have access to technology can participate, members can either phone in or be provided with iPads from Kentish Town Library. The Council is also providing an internet connection to those who don’t have access to one and there is British sign language and interpreters joining the video sessions for those who need them.

We have seen through this Covid-19 crisis how important our front-line health and care staff are to helping people survive and recover. But we have also seen the unequal impact of poor long-term health, and how this has made some communities more vulnerable to Covid-19.

Population health and keeping people well is at the core of ensuring equality in our communities. That is why we made restarting our Health and Care Citizens Assembly a priority recognising that whilst the pandemic continues to impact our communities, we are putting our residents voice at the heart of thinking about how we design services to keep people well and care for them when they need it.
Cllr Georgia Gould, Leader of the Council and chair of the Health and Wellbeing board
Our residents are at the heart of health and care services in Camden and this Citizens’ Assembly provides us with a fantastic opportunity to hear first-hand from our residents on what matters most to them when it comes to healthcare. As we restart the Assembly, we will continue to focus on the priorities that members identified in the first session, but also shape this around their personal experiences of the covid-19 outbreak.

We also want to make sure these sessions are as inclusive as possible, so we consulted with organisations including Age UK Camden and North London Cares to make sure the set-up of the assembly is as inclusive for our residents as possible.
Cllr Pat Callaghan, Cabinet Member for a Healthy and Caring Camden

An expert panel made up of local and national NHS professionals, think tanks and Council health staff will support the Assembly to inform local health and care leaders.

Camden’s Full Council and Health and Wellbeing Board will also hear the recommendations of the Assembly.

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