PATIENTS across Wearside are being offered a chance to have a say in how the health service is run.
Since July, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust has been responsible for community health services in Sunderland and so is seeking to recruit members from the city.
Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Norma Wright, is urging people to consider putting their names forward.
She said: “This is an opportunity for the people of Sunderland to really influence the way many health services in our city are provided.
“I would encourage as many as possible to become members so they can play their part in ensuring our local health services meet the needs of our population.
“We all have a real chance of improving how services are delivered by identifying any concerns that we may have and then working together through the foundation trust to address them.”
The community services the trust provides include district nursing, health visiting, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, palliative care and walk-in minor injury units.
Peter Davidson, chairman of the South Tyneside Trust, said: “We already have 10,000 public and staff members but given our new responsibilities it’s very important to us that we extend our membership.
“We want the residents of Sunderland to have a voice in how we provide services for them.”
People who join are able to elect members to the board of governors, stand for election as a governor and be consulted about proposed service changes.
There is also a prize draw for all public members at the Annual Members’ Meeting on December 5. To find out more about becoming a member, ring 202 4121.