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Healthwatch marks network launch across five events in England simultaneously


The Healthwatch network went live on 1 April 2013. To launch the new network of consumer champions, Healthwatch England hosted a series of five simultaneous events across the country – in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Taunton and Leeds – on 11 April 2013. 

Each morning event was led by a local Healthwatch, supported by Healthwatch England committee members and staff. In the afternoon the national stakeholder event took place from London, joining the other four events by live video link.

We were joined by Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, along with MPs and Peers, media, leaders from the charities and non-profit sector plus a range of chief executives and chairs from local Healthwatch.

The Healthwatch network is being established to strengthen consumer voice in the health and social care infrastructure; it will replace the outgoing Local Involvement Networks.

Anna Bradley, Chair of Healthwatch England said: “The Healthwatch network is a fresh start for the voice of the consumer to be heard and acted upon. With our independent statutory powers, the network as a whole has a fantastic opportunity to make a difference.  Healthwatch England looks forward to making sure the public’s voice is heard loud and clear by those who plan, run and regulate health and social care services.”

Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State, said: "The Healthwatch network will play an important role in championing the voice of the consumer. We look forward to them making progress on the ground, helping people's voices be heard and turning them into action. Through Healthwatch, we have a real opportunity to make a difference."