THE HEDON BLOG has sought to encourage local people to become actively involved in the East Riding of Yorkshire Local Involvement Network (see ERYLINk website).

The ERYLINk aims to improve health and social care by giving local people a stronger voice to influence how services operate.

The affect that a LINk can have has been demonstrated in Hull. The Hull LINk network has published a report on Hospital Transport based upon speaking to patients, carers and hospital visitors. The report has highlighted the overall lack of car parking spaces at Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital – and the problems and distress that result from this.

The Hull LINK made some practical suggestions to improve things for hospital visitors; it recommended that the Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust:

  • Stagger visiting times to reduce parking pressures at peak times.
  • Introduce short term parking areas to free  up more space and a ‘pay as you leave’ system to save patients money.
  • Improve the provision of disabled parking bays.

In response, see the Yorkshire Post, the NHS Trust has said that it hopes to create an extra 200 car parking spaces at Castle Hill Hospital over the next few months.

The LINk model has been recognised as successful by the Government who have proposed that they become part of a new independent ‘patient champion’ organisation called HealthWatch to be established in 2012.

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