People in Rutland give views on new health watchdog

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More than 50 people attended two meetings in the county last week to give their opinion on changes to a health watchdog.

Rutland Local Involvement Network, known as Link, held the meetings at Manton Village Hall on Wednesday and at Voluntary Action Rutland on Thursday.

The Link group is made up of interested people and organisations, which report back to NHS organisations.

But from April, these Link groups will be disbanded and replaced by new organisations called Healthwatch, which will build on the achievements of Link groups but have more powers and functions.

Healthwatch will be able to report concerns about the quality of care directly to Healthwatch England, which will then make recommendations to the Care Quality Commission.

Chairman of Rutland Link Kathy Reynolds thanked the people who attended the meetings.

She said: “They provided lively and constructive discussion about what the local community will expect from Healthwatch Rutland as it begins work in April, following the timetable set by the Health and Social Care Act 2012.

“Link and Rutland County Council, which is charged with ensuring that an effective Healthwatch is set up, now have much food for thought as they begin work on the development of Healthwatch Rutland.”

To find out more about Healthwatch visit