Patient Participation Groups: A voice for patients for 50 years

Jun 8, 2022

Written by Dom Partridge, Medical Writer

6th to 13th June 2022 is Patient Participation Group (PPG) Awareness Week; aiming to raise the profile of PPGs within primary healthcare.

The first Patient Participation Group

The first PPG was set up in 1972 by Dr Peter Pritchard at his practice in Berinsfield, near Oxford, and in 1975 he published a paper in the British Medical Journal detailing his observations. Although this paper was published nearly 50 years ago, the issues that members raised still resonate today. For example, it’s interesting to read that receptionists struggled to fit everyone in, while staffing difficulties at weekends and evenings, and the need for limited non-urgent consulting time in “unsocial hours”, were discussed. Dr Pritchard goes on to note that after listening to patients’ concerns and thoughts, a booklet on “hints on keeping well” was written and distributed, and a chiropody service with transport for older people was organised.

Current Patient Participation Groups

In the 50 years since Dr Pritchard’s innovation, PPGs have become commonplace throughout the country. Their role however has remained similar, they now:

  • Advise the practice on the patient perspective
  • Organise health promotion events
  • Communicate with the wider patient body
  • Run volunteer services and support groups to meet local needs
  • Carry out research into the views of those who use the practice (and their carers)
  • Influence the practice or the wider NHS to improve commissioning
  • Fundraise to improve the services provided by the practice.

You may have noticed that one aspect of PPGs in particular has remained consistent; communication.

Communication is at the heart of what we do at Source Health Economics.

Our team of medical writers are experienced in developing clear and concise written materials, which effectively communicate evidence-based messages. Our writing is tailored to the audience, whether that is colleagues in the pharmaceutical/medical device industry, health technology assessment body assessors, clinicians, payers, or patient groups. If you are interested in finding out more about our value communication services, please contact us at Source Health Economics, an independent consultancy specialising in evidence generation, health economics, and communication.

More Insights

Conceptual modelling and NICE requirements: a significant change or hill of beans?

Conceptual modelling and NICE requirements: a significant change or hill of beans?

Written by Alec Miners, Head of Health Economics The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence’s (NICE’s) new processes and methods guide includes several important changes to the way submitted economic evaluations should be conducted ... Read more

British Heart Week 2022

British Heart Week 2022

As we approach the end of British Heart Week, we reflect on some of the key stats around heart conditions in the UK and our contribution as a company to help bring cutting-edge treatments to patients with cardiovascular diseases Read more

The Innovative Medicines Fund is now available to fast-track non-cancer medicines recommended with managed access

The Innovative Medicines Fund is now available to fast-track non-cancer medicines recommended with managed access

The Innovative Medicines Fund (IMF) launched this month (June 2022) to support faster access to non-cancer drugs. This process involves NHS England and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) working in partnership with ... Read more

NICE tests a new approach for evaluating and reimbursing antimicrobials

NICE tests a new approach for evaluating and reimbursing antimicrobials

Written by Chris Hellmund, Senior Medical Writer Antimicrobial resistance is a major threat to global health that threatens to reverse the progress of modern medicine. More infections are becoming harder to treat, and without coordinated efforts Read more