NHS fair encourages public to air concerns

From left, NHS Portsmouth CCG chief clinical officer Dr Jim Hogan, director of strategy for Solent NBHS Trust Sarah Austin, and Portsmouth CCG chief operating officer Innes Richens, talking to staff from South Central Ambulance Service
From left, NHS Portsmouth CCG chief clinical officer Dr Jim Hogan, director of strategy for Solent NBHS Trust Sarah Austin, and Portsmouth CCG chief operating officer Innes Richens, talking to staff from South Central Ambulance Service

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NHS professionals gave people free advice at a health fair in Portsmouth.

The first Your Health event was held in Guildhall Square yesterday, with hundreds of people taking the chance to visit dozens of stalls devoted to the local NHS, social care and voluntary groups.

Visitors could take tests to find out more about their health, talk to staff to find out more about what support might be there for them in the city, and to rate the NHS services they receive.

GPs talked to people about what they would like surgeries to offer services in the future.

And there was a chance to use some pedal power to tasty effect on the ‘smoothie bike’, look inside an ambulance, learn more about sexual health and to get teeth checked on the tooth bus.

Dr Linda Collie, a Portsmouth GP and executive member of NHS Portsmouth Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: ‘We think that the day went really well.

It is always nice to hear compliments, but it is also essential that we give people opportunities to tell us when things aren’t working so well so we can learn lessons, and make improvements

Dr Linda Collie

‘I hope the people who came along enjoyed themselves, and learned something as well.

‘In the future we know that the NHS must get better at supporting people to keep themselves well – not just step in when they are ill.

‘Events like this give people a great chance to pick up a few tips on living more healthily.

‘NHS staff have had the chance to hear lots of views from people about how the health service is performing locally.

‘It’s always nice to hear compliments but it’s essential that we give people opportunities to tell us when things aren’t working so well so we can learn lessons and make improvements.’

There was a large representation from the voluntary sector as well, from Age UK to the Wessex Cancer Trust.

n To get involved in your local health service visit portsmouthccg.nhs.uk/Join-In.