Working alongside our communities is an important part of our partnership - seeing the people we serve as assets. Working alongside local communities, ward councillors, council colleagues, voluntary community organisations and many others is essential if we are to fully understand the real value of early help and self-care. There is a wealth of expertise across West Yorkshire and Harrogate and communities are better placed than us to know what they need and to make positive change happen. If we are to genuinely work alongside communities as equal partners, then we need to change our relationships and build trust. We have good leadership from the voluntary sector, and we are attracting support from Healthwatch, NHS England, Nurture Development and National Voices to help us to think about our next steps.

To make sure our work adds the greatest value possible and supports existing projects and groups across the area we started with a number of design workshops in the summer. The aim of these were to agree a shared set of principles and a common understanding of what we mean by ‘communities doing more for themselves’, ‘co-production’, ‘asset based community development’, ‘co-design’ etc., and what the shared ambition for working with communities should be. This includes: co-produce and co-design an approach with communities

Work with programmes to ensure good voluntary and community sector representation on all of our work streams

Inspire NHS senior leadership to be ambassadors for the work

Consider how the services we commission and procure might improve the economic, social and environmental well-being of the area in commissioning and contracting across West Yorkshire and Harrogate.

Raise the profile of and share the excellent work taking place across the area - celebrate the difference this is making in our communities on a regional and national level.

It’s important to note that we are the beginning of this work, and are building on the good work to date – further sessions will take place over the coming months with communities.

Our Community/Patient Panel is just one of the ways in which West Yorkshire and Harrogate Cancer Alliance is working with those affected by cancer across our area - patients and their families, carers, service users - to ensure their experiences and views influence the work that we do and the decisions we take.

To do this effectively, we want to ensure that the membership of the panel is as diverse as possible, in terms of where people live; the type(s) of cancer they are experiencing or have experienced; the communities they come from and their personal backgrounds and circumstances.

To help us make this happen, we are working with our partners at Healthwatch Wakefield and with other Healthwatch services around the region. Our Panel Co-ordinator, Fraser Corry, is based at Healthwatch Wakefield.

If you're interested, contact Fraser by telephone on 01924 208327, email or by post at Healthwatch Wakefield, Unity House, Westgate, Wakefield WF1 1EP

For more information about getting inolved with the Cancer Alliance, go to

We are developing our plans around how we will engage and consult with people and how it will work across the future planning process and the role of the Health and Wellbeing Boards.

There are Health and Wellbeing Boards in Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, North Yorkshire County Council and Wakefield.

Health and Wellbeing Boards are made up of key leaders from the health and care system. They work together to improve the health and wellbeing of their local population and reduce health inequalities. Members work together to understand the needs of local people, agree priorities and encourage organisations who provide care to work in a more joined-up way.

The six local plans vary, there is a great deal of diversity across our area, but at their heart they have the same common themes. Three of the priority themes identified in the West Yorkshire and Harrogate draft plan proposals run deep through all six of our local delivery plans. Prevention, supported self-care, primary and community care services - all of which are better delivered at a local level.

We will also work with the West Yorkshire Joint Health and Overview Scrutiny Committee to agree the mechanisms for engagement and any necessary consultation.

We work closely with Healthwatch which is the 'consumer champion for health and social care'. Healthwatch has statutory powers to ensure the voice of the consumer is strengthened and heard by those who commission, deliver and regulate health and care services.


Throughout July and August 2017, Healthwatch Bradford and District worked on behalf of local partners to create a conversation with local people about the future of health and social care. You can read more about this here.

We are looking to recruit patient and public members to be part of our priority work areas to ensure a fair, impartial and transparent process and bring patient and / or carer knowledge and experience to each of the priority areas.

All you have to do is read our patient and public member role description. If you feel this is something you would like to do and have the time to commit to this role then please complete the two forms below and return to the address or email provided on the expression of interest form.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Maternity Voices Partnerships (MVPs) are working groups: teams of women and their families, commissioners, maternity staff working together to review and contribute to the development of their local maternity care.

Across West Yorkshire and Harrogate there are 7 local MVPs  each working with their hospital Trust to transform local maternity provision.  West Yorkshire and Harrogate Local Maternity System (LMS)/ Health Care Partnership developed a network of MVPs which provided an opportunity for the Chairs of the MVPs to support and learn from each other and where appropriate system wide approaches for example literature for women and families, guidelines and surveys.

The MVPs have supported the LMS with the co-production of the strategy and are part of the decision making process as they have representation on the LMS Board and other workstreams. 

They provided input to the development of their own local Maternity Voices Partnership website which provides local information and details of the work the groups have been involved in to improve maternity services. 

A report into the findings of the West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership's Planned Care Citizens’ Panel was published on 24 June 2022, exactly one year after the panel met for the first time. The panel was introduced in 2021, in partnership with Healthwatch, to support communications around delays to planned care caused by the pandemic.

You can read more about the panel, their experiences and their recommendations in this media release Seeking patients' views on delays to planned care caused by the pandemic. The report is available in PDF and Word versions below.

The Integrated Stroke Delivery Network are looking to recruit a group chair, deputy chair and approximately 15 patient and carer representatives, who have experience of living with or caring for someone affected by stroke, to form a stroke patient and carer assurance group.

Our ambition

We want people with learning disabilities in West Yorkshire and Harrogate to receive the best possible care. We want people with learning disabilities to feel supported to have their say as they are the experts when it comes to knowing what help, support and personalised care they need.

What are we doing?

We want to help identify health and care champions with learning disabilities from all equality groups across West Yorkshire and Harrogate. We would like those health and care champions to help us to engage with the wider community of people with learning disabilities so we can further develop our plans and put them into action by involving them in future conversations about improvement and change.  To help achieve this, we want to support a group of health champions with learning disabilities from across West Yorkshire and Harrogate:

• to help us talk to other people with learning disabilities so we can hear the views and experiences of as many people as possible

• to work with some of our partners and the people who manage our work around a range of important health and care issues, to help us improve services and experience of care for people with learning disabilities.

What next?

We have commissioned an organisation called Bradford Talking Media (BTM) for a period of 12 months initially to help us identify health and care champions with learning disabilities from all equality groups across West Yorkshire and Harrogate to help us in supporting those health and care champions with learning disabilities to become more informed, experienced, and meaningfully engaged in designing and improving health and care services.

West Yorkshire and Harrogate (WY&H), Public and Patient Involvement (PPI) Assurance Group (formally known as Lay Member Reference Group) is now operating as a formal part of the Joint Committee of WY&H Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) governance arrangements.

The PPI Assurance Group will assure the Joint Committee that the public and patient voice is represented and heard, and that public and patient views and experiences inform decisions on the planning, development, design, redesign, implementation and evaluation of commissioned services.

The memebership of the Group includes Governing Body members for Patient and Public Involvement of each CCGs across WY&H and it will meet six times a year. 

View minutes of the Public and Patient Inovolvement Assurance Group meeting minutes.


Apply to become a West Yorkshire and Harrogate Integrated Stroke Delivery Network Patient and Carer Assurance Group Representative

The Integrated Stroke Delivery Network are looking to recruit a group chair, deputy chair and approximately 15 patient and carer representatives, who have experience of living with or caring for someone affected by stroke, to form a stroke patient and carer assurance group.

There is currently a lay member assurance group for the Joint Committee of the nine Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) with the aim of assuring the CCGs Governing Bodies through their respective patient and public involvement work.  This is an important part of our priority programmes, which includes cancer, urgent and emergency care, mental health and stroke.

Our Parnership is also establishing a new Board to strengthen joint working arrangement between all organisations involved and most importantly to futher improve health and care for the 2.6 million people living across the area.

There will also be a recruitment process for co-opted public voice representatives on the Partnership Board early 2019.  The role of the representative will be a critical friend with lived experience of health care. Full details of the role and how to apply will be advertised soon.

You can read more about the Partnership Board here.


We are also looking at how we can engage with young people to find out if they would like to contribute to the work of the Partnership, and what ideas they may have on how we can ensure the voice of young people are included in the future of health and care services.

A survey was carried out across the area and we received responses from over 60 youth organisations. The intention is to access support from these groups on an ongoing basis as and when needed – rather than inventing something new.  You can read the report here.

You can also read more about what young people from all over the country say who have a passion for improving health services for young people here, with lots of useful resources for engaging with young people.