New chairperson for hospitals’ patient council

Well-known patient advocate Neil Johnson has been elected as the first chairperson of the recently formed patient council for Saolta University Health Care Group.

The group includes the following hospitals: University Hospital Galway and Merlin Park University Hospital; Sligo Regional Hospital; Letterkenny General Hospital; Mayo General Hospital; Portiuncula Hospital Ballinasloe; and Roscommon Hospital.

Jean Kelly, Saolta’s director of nursing and midwifery, will act as vice chair as per the Terms of Reference.

The aim of the council is to work closely with staff to improve patients’ experience of using hospital services.

The council is part of the healthcare group’s patient and public involvement strategy and will provide a powerful, independent voice for patients, service users and communities on health service issues.

It will help assess the current quality of service, recommend new services or changes required to existing services, review policies and procedures, oversee the development of patient involvement initiatives and help communicate to the wider population.

The patient council is endorsed by the board of Saolta University Health Care Group and will report through the executive lead to the board on its progress and advising and relaying key messages on patient opinion

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