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  • Writer's pictureCarl Adams

Co-production Programme; what we’ve learnt so far...

Co-production involves healthcare professionals working in partnership with patients, carers, and communities to develop, shape and improve services. The aim is enhanced patient experiences, and more effective and efficient healthcare services.


As the Participation Team at the Academy, we have witnessed a growing interest and demand for support with co-production. We decided to develop a training programme. This is first in a series of blogs sharing what we’re learning and some of the successes (and fails) of how we have done this, and the impact it has had.


Embodying the principles of co-production, we started by bringing together a working group which included patients and other service users, health care staff, and Participation Facilitators from Solent’s Child and Family Services. Together, we designed and are now delivering the co-production training programme, with our patient and public representatives leading parts of the days. The aim is to learn, apply and build on our co-production experiences.


The first co-production programme launched in May 2023, and it includes 7 teams from across the Trust, each with their own co-production aim. We are evaluating the programme as we go along.

 

What we’ve heard is really important for success

Involve the right people

It is critical to involve the people most impacted by potential change rather than just involving the people who are typically forthcoming. It’s then important to work in partnership with these people in a way which is inclusive and where the time is taken to fully learn what matters to them.

‘Who aren’t we talking to and should be? We seem to speak to the same people.’
“We want to make sure that they are right for the people who use them, so we have the people who are going to be using these services, develop them.”
“It is not any kind of hierarchy; we want to work on this problem together and find a solution “
“It is about working collaboratively and creatively to problem solve different solutions.”
“Getting those people who should be involved especially the vulnerable people, and, allowing them some control to make a difference’”

Service buy-in and support

For many, co-production is in addition to existing work and day to day pressures. The hope is in having the flexibility, investment of time and support from colleagues and managers which will support in making a difference through co-production.

‘I hope I feel more empowered.’
‘Management within the organisation is supportive.’
 

What we've heard people are worried about:

The wider health and care system

Participants feel concerned that they can’t achieve what they want to, due to the existing systems and the lack of ability to change.

‘Slow moving large organisations can limit flexibility and be the gap between what is wanted and what can be achieved.’

Funding

Either for making the changes, or for recognising and reimbursing the people involved, to truly value them for their invested time, knowledge, skills, and experiences.

 

Reflections from the co-pro team

The co-production working group regularly meet to reflect on what is working and what could change.

‘We're really starting to take a deep understanding of the actions and what needs to be done to achieve our dream. It is great to see how that journey progresses within the different teams and how they are approaching it.’
‘It inspires me, gives me an amazing feeling. It is really great to see ideas building throughout the day’.

Overall, we have learnt there is a real desire to shape services through co-production and there is huge value in bringing people together to learn and support each other.

The journey of co-production requires continuous effort and learning from experience of working in partnership. Check back here to see how the programme and the teams are doing, and the outcomes of this way of improving.


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