NHS Citizen

NHS England’s Patient and Public Voice Team, part of the Directorate of Patients and Information are committed to engaging not just patients but citizens in the planning and delivery of health and social care.

The radical part of the idea (NHS Citizen) is to genuinely create a system that will hold the Board of NHS England to account – taking engagement from rhetoric into practice.

The pinnacle of the new engagement system is the Citizens Assembly that will hold the Board to account, on issues gathered and synthesised in the Discover and Gather processes (some of which will take place virtually using a newly developed digital solution).

There are nine workstreams and the biggest challenge of them all is the ‘organisational development/culture change’ workstream which is led by the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations. NHS England recognises that if the digital solution is going to work and the board is to listen to ‘unheard’ voices, then behaviours within the organisation will have to change.

The other partners are: DemsocPublic-i and Involve, together they have formed a strong bond based on mutual respect and complementarity of skills and approaches.


From April 2013 NHS England took on many of the functions of the former primary care trusts (PCTs) with regard to the commissioning of primary care health services, as well as some nationally-based functions previously undertaken by the Department of Health.The new arrangements comprise a single operating model for the commissioning of primary care services. The operating model describes the system by which we will use the £100bn to buy health services.

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