“The health sector needs to learn how to work with patient leaders” Tessa Richards The BMJ Dec 2017“The concept of patient leadership is emerging as one important new way of working collaboratively with patients and carers…Patient and carer leaders can raise the profile of improving experience of care and can have a real impact on action being taken in response to patient and carer feedback.” NHS England“Patient leaders bring a credible voice, and can work with system leaders to create a compelling case for change. This gives the system ‘permission to act’. Patient leaders influence health services’ priorities, placing a greater emphasis on the experience of care. Patient leaders can help to design services on the ground, and when system leaders involve patient leaders and carers in this service design, they are able to focus more closely on what patients and carers want.” NHS EnglandThis national summit chaired and co-produced with Jonathon Hope MBE will focus on the important issue of Patient Leadership and how you can support patients in your organization to co-design and improve services, how you can help patients to develop patient leadership skills and how to effectively work with patient leaders.Increasingly, in response to this call to action and the growing pressure on services, charities, think tanks and organisations across the NHS are turning to patients to gain irreplaceable insight into how organisations, services and cultures need to be changed. Increasingly, Patient Leaders are at the forefront of this change, building collaborative relationships with fellow patients, trusts and community services, especially in areas of patient experience and patient engagement. Work is being done by the King’s Fund, the NHS, the Coalition for Collaborative Care and many trusts across the NHS to explore the concept of Patient Leadership and to develop Patient Leadership programmes.However, since the concept and practice of Patient Leadership is still an emerging field in healthcare science, and as is often the case with any new ideas, is only spreading in isolated pockets of best practice across the NHS, there remains a very significant number of staff and organisations who are unfamiliar with what a Patient Leader is and of the potential patient-centred leadership skills, roles and capabilities they can bring to the NHS. There is also a lack of understanding of the considerable strategic advantages of involving Patient Leaders, especially, but not exclusively, in future strategic planning, areas such as assurance and validation and service delivery and design at Board level or below.In addition, another barrier to building a broader momentum behind Patient Leadership approaches is that large areas of the NHS England and the NHS are still focused strategically on a PPI mindset rather than a ‘Patient Leadership and Public Involvement’ (PLPI) mindset with only a few organisations putting together comprehensive organisation-wide patient leadership strategies to effectively recruit, support and collaborate with emerging local Patient Leaders. Thus many trusts Patient and Public Involvement Strategies do not yet specifically highlight the potential of Patient Leaders.If you feel that your organisations or key members of your staff such as Patient & Public Engagement Managers, Service-Design Leads, Assurance Leads, Directors of Patient Experience, Governors, Non-executive Directors or others need to be brought up to date on emerging best practice in this area then this national summit will provide essential advice, tips and practical solutions to implement patient leadership within your service. The conference features presentations and extended workshops from patient leaders who have made a difference in practice, and organisations that have established patient leadership as a core part of their culture. There will also be an extended focus on developing training in patient leadership and implementing a patient leadership programme in your service.