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Everyone can help change health and social care for the better


Today, 11 March is HSC Change Day, when people right across Northern Ireland will join thousands of health and social care workers, patients, service users and the public from 30 other nations to make a pledge, to improve health and social care as part of the ‘Change Day’ movement.

‘Change Day’, started three years ago, and is now a global social movement, which encourages people to make a pledge – something that you promise to do, or to change, to help improve your health and social care system !

HSC Change Day is supported by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety, the Health and Social Care Board, the Public Health Agency and Health and Social Care Trusts.

Anyone can make a pledge. Whether you are a member of the public, a patient, a service user, a social worker, allied health professional, nurse, doctor, student, pharmacist, optometrist, manager, or dentist, you can pledge to change for the better.

Heather Moorhead, Director, NI Confederation of Health and Social Care and Chair of the organising group explained: “People know our health and social care service in Northern Ireland has been amazingly successful over the last few decades supporting people live much longer lives – but now we must make sure that how we keep people well and deliver care keeps pace, especially as we seek to care for our older and growing population.

“The changes needed cannot just happen from the top – there are many opportunities to improve care. We can all eat more healthily and keep fit, include our older citizens in social activities and we can work to redesign how we deliver care, as suggested in the recent Donaldson report ‘The Right Time – The Right Place’. Everyone can be involved to make a difference. Nothing is too big or too small – this is all about people power!”

Chief Nursing Officer for Northern Ireland Charlotte McArdle, added: “I am delighted that the pledges so far support many projects that will become the longer term solutions – early intervention, helping people stay well, as well as making hospital care much safer and more efficient.”
“This initiative is making people much more aware of the needs and solutions and importantly showcasing that people themselves have the power to act.”

Making her individual pledge Charlotte added: “I pledge to support patients, clients and families to have a stronger voice at all levels in Health and Social Care.”

Over 30 events will take place over the course of the day and will include; senior executives shadowing front line staff in both Belfast and Northern Trusts for the day, a social media chat on patient leadership, led by the Patient Client Council and a Pledge Booth at Queen’s University, Belfast lead by students. Artscare will also be involved on the day showcasing their artworks by vulnerable teenagers in care and the Health Committee will join several pledgers on the day to celebrate.

Almost 500 pledges have been received so far. To help improve our health and social care in Northern Ireland why not add your own pledge now by logging onto our website at www.hscchangeday.com

Below is a flavour of some of the pledges made so far:

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