NHS England is running a real-time feedback service for patients starting in London and the North East of England.
NHS England’s director of patients and information Tim Kelsey said the CareConnect service was based on the 311 service in the US.
311 enables people to access information about and provide feedback on government services via the web, phones, skype, twitter and apps.
Kelsey said the ability to hear the public voice could be incredibly helpful for people running services.
“We want to offer patients and citizens in the NHS a chance to become part of the commissioning process,” he added.
NHS England is working with a group of hospitals in London and the North East in phase one of the roll-out before CareConnect is expanded across the country.
By March 2015, everyone should have the opportunity to comment on NHS services in real-time.
People will be able to telephone, text or email in their feedback on NHS services.
The original idea was for NHS 111 to field these calls, but problems with the roll-out of the non-urgent care telephone help line meant the feedback telephone service would, for now, be a discrete programme.
“We have some thinking to do about what the 111 service will look like, but my view is that it should be a broad customer service front-door for people for people wanting to find out more about the health service,” Kelsey explained.
The feedback service will initially appear on NHS Choices, but will ultimately be core to the integrated customer service platform being developed by NHS England.
As part of this development, NHS Choices is being transitioned in-house to the Health and Social Care Information Centre.
The centre’s latest board minutes say the Cabinet Office rejected a further extension of the NHS Choices contract with Capita and about 140 staff and 40 sub-contracts are being moved to the HSCIC.
Kelsey also told EHI that the Code4Health initiative would be launched by the end of the Autumn.
The plan was to offer clinicians and patients the opportunity to learn to code, with a particular focus on health data.
He added that various groups, such as junior doctors, were involved in developing the project and further details would be announced shortly.