A new community forum bringing together community and NHS leaders across Carlisle and Eden will hold its first meeting this week.
The Carlisle and Eden Community Forum (CECF) is being established by Healthwatch Cumbria to mirror the regular forum held in west Cumbria.
It will be chaired by the Archdeacon of West Cumberland, the Venerable Richard Pratt, and will be a place for local people, representatives of local groups and health and care system leaders to discuss together how the health and care system is developing.
The first meeting of the Carlisle and Eden Community Forum (CECF) is planned for Friday September 20 between 10am-noon at The Stoneybeck Inn at Penrith.
The Venerable Richard Pratt said: “The West Cumbria Community Forum has been meeting regularly since late 2014 and has proved to be valuable to both community groups, who can find out first hand about developments in the NHS, but also to our healthcare leaders who have open and informative discussions about services and how they are evolving.
“Over this time we have developed relationships which have enabled conversations which are important for all involved and for some time we have wanted to develop something similar for the other side of the county.”
The West Cumbria Community Forum (WCCF) is a network of networks where people feed back to their community groups the developments they have discussed.
The forum is supported by NHS leaders including Professor John Howarth who is a practicing GP and deputy chief executive of both North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust and Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.
Professor Howarth said: “Our NHS is going through some exciting changes across north Cumbria, our acute and community Trusts are merging, we are welcoming a new provider of mental health services and we are developing more care closer to where people live through Integrated Care Communities, not to mention the development of a new cancer centre for north Cumbria. We really want to involve our wider communities as these projects are developing to see what it means for all of us who use these services.”
The forum will be hosted by Healthwatch Cumbria. Its chief operating officer Sue Stevenson said: “We know services are stronger when we involve people in how they improve and develop, and we are keen to make sure that Carlisle and Eden has that strong voice. The forum in west has worked well because leaders in health and care and the community have valued and supported it and because local people have felt
listened to and had their questions answered”.
Items on the agenda for the first CECF include the development of North Cumbria Health and Care System and how our services are working together more closely than ever, as well as the area’s response to the NHS Long Term Plan.
You can find more information here https://healthwatchcumbria.co.uk/