This week is Patient Participation Awareness Week (6-11 June) and NHS Lambeth Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is celebrating the support it gets from patients to help shape services.
Most of the 47 GP practices in Lambeth have Patient Participation Groups which work with their surgeries and the CCG to improve services for patients. The groups are made up of local patients.
Dr Adrian McLachlan, Chair of NHS Lambeth CCG, and GP at Hetherington Group Practice, said: "In Lambeth, local people are at the heart of all we do as a Clinical Commissioning Group.
"We recognise how important it is to shape services with the active involvement of local people and patients. We know this will help us to better understand our communities and develop high quality effective care for people when they need it.
"Patient Participation Groups are improving services for other patients. They are the patients' eyes and ears and can feedback to GP practices what works well, and what doesn't."
The CCG is holding an event this week to launch a new video about the value of Patient Participation Groups and celebrate the support they give.
Sandra Jones, Chair of the Lambeth Patient Participation Group Network (LPPGN) said: "We are really pleased that so many of our members and patient groups are embracing awareness week, to showcase how they are making a difference in their practices.
"Many have planned activities, which include health related workshops, carers' drop in sessions, leaflet and poster displays and discussions about improving access to services. The Lambeth PPG Network is delighted that patient groups and their achievements are being recognised and celebrated during awareness week."
The network is urging patients to contact their local surgery for details of what's going on at their practice.
NHS Lambeth CCG involves patients in improving services in a number of ways.
We like to have a continuous dialogue with Lambeth people and always welcome views and feedback on our services.
We attend community events and festivals, meeting groups and we take part in public meetings. We work with patient organisations who support patient groups and help them develop in our GP practices.
Our Governing Body meetings in public include a patient forum for people to ask questions about our work.
Dr McLachlan said: "We know that engagement with our communities will help us to better understand local people and how we can best enable them to stay healthy and get the right support when they need it."
The Patient Participation Group video is available to watch on YouTube .
If you'd like to get involved with your PPG, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Wai Ha on 07535 805027 or Cheryl on 07427 873090.
*Lambeth Patient Participation Group (PPG) Network brings patient groups together, where collectively they have a strong cohesive voice to influence quality and planning across the NHS in Lambeth.
Lambeth PPG Network promotes and supports the creation, development and work of PPGs in the borough.
It provides opportunities for PPGs to meet, share information, experiences and good practice. It also seeks to make sure the patients' voice is heard by commissioners and provider organisations and common issues and concerns are raised.