Consumer Advisory Network
Central West Hospital and Health Service encourages community members who want to have a say about local health needs and services to join their local Consumer Advisory Network (CAN).
Making sure our health services meet the reasonable expectations and needs of local communities is a major priority for the Central West Hospital and Health Service (CWHHS) board. Local communities and patients who have recently experienced our care first hand are well placed to assist the board in making decisions about which services are needed, where and how frequently they are provided and whether the quality of our care met their expectations.
The Hospital and Health Boards Act 2011 recognises the importance of involving consumers and communities, local volunteers and community leaders as well as other partners in the delivery of health services into the Central West. In order to improve local health services, the government has established a mandate that each health service establish and implement a consumer and community engagement strategy. The establishment, support and encouragement of local Consumer Advisory Networks (CANs) is an essential part of our engagement strategy. In the Central West there has been a healthy history of local communities engaging with the various health services and we would like to draw those together to build a model that shares this wealth of knowledge and experience for the benefit of all health service planning, delivery and evaluation in the future.
CANs are also an integral component of the Western Queensland Primary Health Network, which is committed to working in partnership with the three Hospital and Health Services in undertaking ongoing joint engagement with western Queensland communities. This reduces unnecessary overlap and provides communities the strongest opportunity to influence and shape both state and federally funded healthcare activities.
|Pictured above: Members of the Barcaldine Central West Health Advisory Committee during a meeting.|
The principle role of each CAN is to connect with locals in order to provide feedback about local health issues, service needs and service performance. The network can review strategic and operational plans and provide feedback on service gaps, care concerns, health facilities and health literacy. CANs should also monitor service integration between health and aged care providers and assist local healthcare staff to understand local needs and improve care. CANs can also play a role in providing consumer representation on various committees such as patient safety (as required).
Join Your Local CAN
If you are interested in joining your local CAN, please contact your local Primary Health Centre or Hospital for more information.