Engaging with the public helps us to understand people’s needs and ensure that health and care services are better designed to meet these needs.

Read on to find out how you can get involved and help to shape our decisions and services.

We are committed to putting patients, people who use services, carers and the wider public at the centre of everything we do, ensuring there is a public voice that can influence key decisions and help to shape our services.

Recently, we have carried out public engagement on a range of key projects, including our proposals to restrict access to fertility services in order to make essential savings, our ongoing review of community mental health services and our recently introduced Getting fit for Surgery programme.

Are you interested in having your say about how local health and care services are developed? Do you have views and experiences you want to share?

Click on the tabs above to find out how you can get involved and help shape our decisions and services.

Here are public consultations and engagement activities that you can take part in now:

1. Sexual violence psychological therapies

Together with Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG and Somerset CCG, we recently received commissioning responsibility for the ‘Sexual Violence Psychological Therapies’ service.

This current specialist service is provided across Bristol, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire, Bath and North East Somerset and Somerset by University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UH Bristol) and a consortium of providers led by The Green House.

The current services provide therapies for girls aged 13+, women and boys/men of any age, who have been sexually assaulted within the past 12 months. The future new service will also include the provision of therapies for girls under the age of 13 who have been sexually assaulted within the past 12 months.

Both the UH Bristol and the Green House contracts are due for renewal next year. We are therefore required to undertake an exercise of specifying what this service should be and buying this service on behalf of those who will be using the service. This will be carried out by us on behalf of all the CCGs for this specific element of the service.

This consultation relates specifically to the ‘Sexual Violence Psychological Therapies’ element of the service for people who have been sexually assaulted within the past 12 months.

Before completing the survey, please take time to read the service specification.

Please complete the survey here.

The consultation excludes:

The wider ‘Sexual Assault Referral Centre’ services recently commissioned by NHS England

Services designed to support people who have experienced historical sexual abuse (post 12 months)

Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services

The Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service consultation

2. B&NES Integrated Care Record

Virgin Care is working with its partner health and social care providers across Bath and North East Somerset (B&NES) to introduce an integrated B&NES health and care record.

The record will take relevant patient information from all the different health and care systems across the area, such as GPs and community services, to allow health and social care staff to deliver joined up care.

One health and care record will allow you to view a limited set of your own records via a health and care portal – a secure, online website that allows convenient, 24-hour access to personal health and care information from anywhere with an internet connection. Using a secure username and password you will be able to view information including notes of recent GP visits, discharge summaries and medications.

Virgin needs your help in designing the portal to ensure it is as user-friendly as possible.

You can get involved by completing the survey here

Our Your Health, Your Voice group meets every two months and provides an opportunity for the public to feedback on our plans to improve local health services.

The group is chaired by our Lay Member for Patient and Public Involvement and acts as a critical friend to the CCG, discussing proposed service changes with commissioners from planning through to delivery.

Members are also encouraged to inform and support the CCG’s engagement with the wider public, by advising us on different approaches and groups who we should consult with, and sharing information and surveys with any other local/community groups they are involved with.

Recently, members have been asked to share their views on a range of topics including:

  • How the CCG should consult on, and present, its Getting Fit for Surgery scheme.
  • What changes need to be considered, and which groups need to be engaged with, as part of the review of community mental health services.
  • How access to primary care can be improved.
  • How we can encourage people to give feedback on services and patient experience.
  • What they thought of the CCG’s proposals to restrict access to fertility and sterilisation services (in order to make necessary financial savings).
  • How changes to integrated urgent care services should be communicated with the public.

The findings of this group are formally reported to the CCG’s public Board for review and discussion. Minutes from the meetings are available on the CCG’s website here.

If you would be interested in joining the Your Health, Your Voice group, or would like to find out more information, please email or call 01225 831861.

We coordinate a group of Community Champions, jointly with Bath and North East Somerset Council.

Community Champions are volunteers who represent the public. They are the voice of the community and share their experiences and ideas for developing new services. They:

  • Played a key role in supporting our community services review, which resulted in the appointment of Virgin Care as the primary provider from April 2017.
  • Have been supporting our review of community mental health services – helping us to identify changes that need to be made, and advising us on how we can engage effectively with a range of groups.
  • Continue to be closely involved in the transformation of community health and care services, attending meetings with commissioners and Virgin Care across a number of different projects.

We are not currently recruiting any Community Champions, but will share any future roles and opportunities here.


In Autumn 2018, we are going to start producing a public involvement newsletter. This will be full of information about how you can have your say on the development of health and care services in Bath and North East Somerset.

The newsletter will be uploaded here on the website and will be available via email or post. Please note, the newsletter will be made available in a range of formats, including large print and audio file. If you would like to receive the newsletter, please email