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Sunday, 1 June 2014

Busy times, SIB, Carers voices being heard...

Hi guys, it's been a busy few days - I've been out with my Local Authority again!

Here in Scotland, NHS and Social Care are merging and I was asked to be involved with the Shadow Integration Board.
Now, you will know exactly how I feel about Carers voices being heard and just how important it is to influence those with the real power to positively change things for Carers so...of course I said yes!
I'm now the Carer member of the... 'Shadow Integration Board for Health and Social Care' for North Ayrshire.

My first 'SIB' event on Wednesday...
The event was busy and it was a fairly high profile group, mostly, if not all professionals working within NHS, Local Authority and third sector organisations and when we broke into working groups, I was the only lay person in our group.
Sometimes this type of meeting can be a little bit intimidating but I just remember why I have been selected and just why I have a place on the board - I'm a Carer and my experience of both 'caring' and navigating the 'Health and Social Care' system is really valuable! The experience and knowledge I have gained and shared with other Carers, is pertinent in us all finding a better way, a better deal if you like, especially for Carers. That can only be achieved by working together, with Carers placed right at the heart of policy and decision making and with places on the board...now that is valuable!
I spoke out strongly for Carers, shared experiences, issues and ideas and any doubts about why I was there were quickly dispelled! Carers need to be there!

All-in-all it was a very productive meeting - I'm glad I agreed to be involved  and I hope the other local Authorities and NHS Trusts involve Carers at the decision making process too!
I honestly feel, it's only by truly listening and working together, we can build a better service for everyone!
Stay strong and speak out wherever you can!
(((hugs)))
Maz x

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