How it works

As part of our leadership development programmes patients, carers and staff are invited to talk about their positive or negative experiences with participants on the programmes. With facilitation, these stories then become discussion areas for the patients and participants during their experiential learning.

Experience of care partner roles include:

Educators/story tellers

Patients have always been involved in the co-creation and design of our leadership programmes. The first design day began with a patient telling their story which has since continued. As educators and narrators, patients, service users and carers can share their experiences of care – positive and negative – with leaders undertaking development programmes. The narrator has some preparation to do and is debriefed afterwards. They are supported throughout the session, as it can often get emotional. The storytellers we have share a range of experiences, some very positive with a ‘why can’t all care be like this?’ focus to those who have had very poor care.

People champions

The people champions are five individuals who originally sat on the NHS Leadership Academy’s strategic advisory board, chaired by Simon Stevens. They were selected through interview processes and hold senior patient focused roles elsewhere either as chairs of Health Watch or as members of NICE and National Voices. Their role is like the activity undertaken by patient advisory forum (PAF) members. People champions support the strategy of the organisation and, from their positions of experience in senior arenas, can guide our decision-making. The current focus of people champion involvement is in the re-tender of our national programmes and the development of education for foundation doctors with Health Education England.

Assessors [viva panels]

At the end of our senior leadership development programmes, the participant is required to undertake an examination. This is conducted by NHS frontline staff and patients with a chair from the organisation. Patients assess whether, from their perspective, the participants have credibility as a senior leader and whether they have truly engaged in the learning to bring about changes to patient care and staff engagement.

Programme and practice board members

All Academy programmes have a programme and practice board. The purpose of the board is governance, but also continuous quality improvement based on evaluation and feedback from participants. Patients are very active in all boards.