Tens of thousands of people across Greater Manchester are being asked to share their struggles and successes in making healthy lifestyle choices, as the region prepares to take responsibility for a £6bn health and social care budget.
The results of the ‘Taking Charge Together’ campaign, which was launched on Monday 15 February, will help in shaping health and social care plans for the next five years. The feedback will be used to help health and social care seniors intervene in some of the worst health outcomes in the country.
It will tackle these situations by revealing insights in to what the people of Greater Manchester believe hinders or enables healthy choices and by identifying outstanding work that can be celebrated and developed at scale across the region.
Feedback from the ‘Taking Charge Together’ will also help health and care officials to design services that can deliver the greatest and fastest improvement in the region’s health and wellbeing.
Greater Manchester’s Director of Population Health Transformation, Wendy Meredith, has stated, “Traditionally health organisations have been the ones talking about the health of the population, but we want the 2.8 million people of Greater Manchester to shape the conversation through this innovative campaign”.
The questions are being posed as Greater Manchester prepares to take responsibility for a £6bn health and social care budget, which will be used to tackle some of the worst health problems in the country.
For example more than ⅔ of early deaths in Greater Manchester are caused by behaviour that could be avoided. In addition nearly 25% of the Greater Manchester population have a mental health or wellbeing issue, which can affect everything including health, employment, parenting and housing.
People can join a conversation about everything from exercise to mental health by going to www.takingchargetogether.org.uk and filling in a quick survey, or by attending one of ten community roadshows, which are being hosted in each of 10 boroughs throughout Greater Manchester by Key103.
Greater Manchester will launch a new five-year vision for health and social care services in April of 2016, consequently health and social care officials are eager to get as many people as possible involved in discussions, either through the survey or through online conversations.
The different elements of the campaign have been designed and monitored by a collaborative group, with representatives from the NHS, voluntary and community sectors, local authorities and the media.
The volunteer sector will also play a significant role by carrying out over 100 local and regional community events for specific audiences.
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