Keeping service users at the centre: the talk of the Annual Members' Meeting

Service users and their families are helping us to improve the way we care

The Trust keeps service users at the heart of everything it does, and staff have been listening to how we can do better. It’s on the back of feedback from service users and their families following a ‘big conversation’ with service users, carers, members, staff and third sector partners last month.

The conversation took place at this year’s Annual Members’ Meeting, which was held on Tuesday 31 July at Horizon, Leeds.

The session included examples of how we’ve been delivering our three strategic objectives:

Guests were then invited to share their own experiences of ‘person-centred care’ before discussing ideas and suggestions for change.

Among the ideas, which were captured by illustrator Tom Bailey from the Arts and Minds Network (see below), was improving how we communicate with service users and carers, and adapting care to each individual person, recognising that it can be difficult when systems and services aren’t connected.

Chair of the Trust, Professor Sue Proctor, said: “Our service users and carers are at the heart of everything we do. Everyone who comes into contact with our Trust can expect to be treated with dignity and respect, and we work with our partners to offer service users a choice of interventions, treatments and joined up care which aims to meet their particular needs.

“It’s so important that we provide person-centred care, so that we know people are receiving care specifically tailored to their needs. We also need to know when we get it right, and when we don’t. Only by doing this can we continuously improve what we do.

“A written report on the comments, ideas and suggestions we heard at the ‘big conversation’ will go to the Council of Governors for discussion in November and will be placed on our website. We will discuss how this work fits into the Trust’s Quality Strategy so that it becomes a core part of our work, not simply a tick list of things to do.

The event was also an opportunity to reflect on and celebrate the work of the Trust, and featured presentations from our Chief Executive, Dr Sara Munro, Chief Financial Officer, Dawn Hanwell, and our Lead Governor, Steve Howarth about our achievements and challenges over 2017/18. Members also took part in a question and answer session with the speakers, and formally received the annual report and accounts.