Healthwatch Northamptonshire chair to make sure commissioners 'put the needs of local communities and people' first
Northamptonshire Healthwatch's new chairman is to make sure any decisions taken by theÂ government-appointed commissioners will bear the needs of the county's adult and social care users in mind when making decisions on the council's finances.
Yesterday, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government James Brokenshire MP brought in Tony McArdle and Brian Roberts to work at One Angel Square overseeing finance and governance.
With the largest part of county council budgets devoted to adult and children's services Dr David Jones - the newly appointed chair of Healthwatch Northamptonshire - is keen to ensure the needs of communities and the county's residents are kept in mind by the commissioners.
“Any developments in Northamptonshire which affect the delivery and quality of these council services will have a direct impact on the most vulnerable people in the community”, said Dr Jones.
“One of the main duties of the new commissioners is therefore to ensure effective support and protection for vulnerable people in the county and we will remind them of this responsibility.
“This is a troubling time for the people of Northamptonshire.
“Change always brings both opportunity and anxiety. People expect to be consulted and are seeking reassurance that the problems in the county will not result in even more problems for individuals and families.
“Healthwatch Northamptonshire works to help local people get the best out of their local health and social care services, whether it's improving them today or helping to shape them for tomorrow. We are determined to provide a channel for Northamptonshire people to comment on these changes.
"We are all about enabling local voices to influence the delivery and design of local services. And we want to hear not just from people who use the services, but anyone who might need to in future.
“The council changes alongside the financial pressures in health services present a very real challenge for council and health service leaders.
"We know they are committed to doing their best. As chair of Healthwatch, I will do my best to make sure that the newly appointed commissioners and local leaders always put the needs of local communities and people at the centre of their thinking and their decisions."