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A new watch for health in Gloucestershire

Published
09.11.2016

Cabinet members are being asked to approve plans to find a new provider of the county's Healthwatch service

With the current contract to provide the service due to come to an end in March of next year, the council has used feedback from public consultation to help design a new service to start in April 2017.

The council is now looking to commission a local Healthwatch service that uses the knowledge and strengths of our communities, uses technology to make health and social care information easy to find, and can influence the way services are provided.

Health and social care has changed a lot since Healthwatch Gloucestershire started in April 2013 and so have the ways people access information. Young people in particular said they want to access more information online.

The council wants to make sure that it offers more opportunities for volunteers to get involved and more collaboration between the service and partners.

The new contract would initially be for five years, with an option to extend for an extra two years on top of that. The total value of the contract would be up to £1.8million over seven years.

Cllr Dorcas Binns, cabinet member for older people, said: "We had some really good feedback during our consultation, and I'd like to thank everyone for taking part.

"With the current contract due to expire, this is the first time that we've been able to look at how Healthwatch works. We've looked at other examples of best practice around the country to help make this decision.

"This, combined with the feedback we've had, will help us to offer a Healthwatch service that will really represent our communities."

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