Transforming Cardiology Services Consultation

Draft Delivery Plan December 2021- March 2022



This plan describes how we will communicate and engage with the public and our stakeholders during the formal consultation process regarding the proposals for the transformation of Cardiology Services at East Sussex Hospital Trust (ESHT) which is due to take place between Monday 6th December 2021 and Friday 11th March 2022.  The plan has been informed by our pre-consultation engagement work, by the Options Development and Appraisal process and by the Equalities and Health Inequalities Impact Assessment.


The plan does not include any communications and engagement that may be required with staff.

Background and context

The CCG is developing proposals for how hospital-based cardiology services can best provide high quality treatment, care and support for local people and meet increasing local population need.  Cardiology services for adults in East Sussex are provided by ESHT at Eastbourne District General Hospital and the Conquest Hospital in Hastings.


Cardiology is the branch of medicine dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of heart disorders and related conditions.  While there are many clinical conditions that can affect the heart in people of all ages, many heart conditions are age-related, making heart health (cardiology) services more and more important as people get older. Cardiology is also constantly evolving with new developments in disease prevention, diagnostics and therapeutics.


The CCG’s vision for the future is to provide a high-quality cardiology service for patients, carers and their families regardless of age, disability, gender or ethnicity.  This includes:

•          providing clinically excellent specialised cardiology services;

•          developing and encouraging innovation in the delivery of cardiology services;

•          developing services that are clinically, financially and environmentally sustainable;

•          increasing the ability to look after a growing and ageing population;

•          providing increased support and development for the cardiology workforce.




Pre-consultation Engagement

To consider how cardiology services could be transformed, the Public Involvement (PI) team undertook pre-consultation engagement which commenced on 4 January 2021 and lasted six weeks (concluding on 14 February 2021). 


To reach the local population in East Sussex the PI team co-developed questionnaires with partners and members of the public and these were promoted widely in paper copies and electronically.  The team undertook interviews with current and former patients of the service and joined virtual local forums and groups to hear from people about their experiences.  The insight gained from this engagement then informed the development and appraisal of options for the future of the service.


Options Development and Appraisal

The CCG commissioned the independent organisation Opinion Research Services (ORS) to lead the options development and appraisal process.  Patients, representatives from relevant VCS organisations and Community Ambassadors attended.  PI team members and cardiology specialists from ESHT attended to observe, present key information and respond to questions, but did not actively participate in the options appraisal scoring and ranking activities.


Three options development and appraisal workshops (independently chaired and facilitated by ORS researchers) took place in March 2021 to identify and consider a longlist of possible options for the future provision of cardiology services.  Participants were provided with information to enable informed discussion, including summaries of key contextual information (e.g. population health needs, clinical standards, activity demand and capacity, finances, estate footprint, workforce) and summaries of key programme documents (e.g. Equality and Health Inequality Impact Assessment and Case for Change).


Various potential models of care were developed and discussed at the workshops and participants then ranked and scored the options against the agreed criteria, as a result of which five options were shortlisted for cardiology:


1.             Option 1: keeping current services as they are;

2.             Option 2: keeping current services as they are while adding new assessment areas in emergency departments and ‘hot clinics’ at both acute hospital sites;

3.             Option 3: building up both acute hospitals, with the addition of assessment areas and ‘hot clinics’ (‘everything, everywhere’);

4.             Option 4: separating services so that Percutaneous Coronary Interventions (PCI) are delivered at one acute hospital site, while elective Electrophysiology (EP), Permanent Pacemaker (PPM) and Devices services are delivered on the other acute site, with the addition of a cardiology assessment areas and ‘hot clinics’ at both acute sites;

5.             Option 5: co-locating all catheterisation laboratories and inpatient services on one acute hospital site, with acute outpatients and diagnostic services at both acute sites, with the addition of cardiology assessment areas and ‘hot clinics’ at both acute sites.


Discussions were based on these five possible approaches. Participants in the workshops were also invited to suggest other approaches for consideration and appraisal, but the consensus was that the five options above were appropriate therefore no further options were added.


These options were then reviewed by ESHT and the CCG and it was decided to proceed to full consultation on Option 5.


Participants at the workshops raised a series of concerns which the PI team will ensure form a focus of the full public consultation currently scheduled to take place in early 2022.  These concerns were:


•          travel and access: time, distance and cost;

•          the ability to cope with increased patient demand;

•          concerns about moves to digital appointments.



Clinical Senate Recommendations

In August 2021 the CCG submitted the Pre-Consultation Business Case to the Southeast Clinical Senate for review.  The Clinical Senate made the following recommendations regarding Patient and Public Engagement:


Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) populations are vulnerable to heart and circulatory disease and are more likely to be associated with increased deprivation. Their engagement and involvement are therefore paramount.


In response, this Delivery Plan ensures that there is a focus on these groups.


Equality and Health Inequalities Impact Assessment (EHIA)

The CCG has reviewed the EHIA.  This document made a series of recommendations and responses to each of these recommendations have been included in the Delivery Plan.


Protected characteristic

Engagement activity


·      Links with local faith communities or cultural groups in order to encourage involvement and gain feedback through all stages of patient and public involvement.

·      Friends, Families and Travellers will receive information on all involvement activity.

·      Questionnaires will be translated into community languages (on request)

·      Attend Eastbourne Cultural Involvement Group to promote engagement opportunities

·      Request support from Diversity Resource International to promote engagement opportunities with local ethnically diverse communities, including refugees and asylum seekers

People who have English as a second language

•   Work with organisations that provide translation services to better understand the need for translation support for patients accessing cardiology services in East Sussex

•   Offer telephone interpretation to support those who speak English as a second language and wish to engage

•   Translate materials into community languages (on request)

Gender reassignment

·      Approach Hastings and Rother Rainbow Alliance Trans Support Group and ask to establish focus groups

·      Approach Bourne Out via Facebook and ask for support with engagement

·      Contact The Clare Project and Switchboard in Brighton and Hove to see if they have reach in East Sussex to encourage participation


•   Take measures at the outset to identify organisations that support younger people living with cardiovascular disease

•   Attend East Sussex Senior Association to talk about acute cardiology service transformation and provide opportunities to feedback/ get involved

•   Contact Age Concern to ask about attending some drop in sessions

•   Attend PPG forums across East Sussex and offer drop in sessions

•   Liaison and engagement with Age UK East Sussex

Religion and Belief

·      Ensure that we have forged links with faith communities in East Sussex to engage in this project.

·      Invite faith elders to complete the survey, and offer translated versions if required


•   Explore opportunities with CVS organisations such as Possibility People to see what forums and networks we can utilise to support engagement

•   Approach Hastings disability forum to ask for support

•   Arrange a drop in opportunity for d/Deaf members to come and talk about experiences of cardiology services

•   Make the materials available in Easy Read and British Sign Language on request.

•   Approach the East Sussex Dementia Adviser Service to support the reach of our engagement

•   Approach the East Sussex Community Learning Disability Team for support

•   Take action to identify and engage with charities and organisations that support patients with diabetes

•   Take action to identify and engage with charities and organisations that support patients with their mental health

Sexual Orientation

·      Take action to identify and engage with LGBTQ groups in East Sussex

Pregnancy and Maternity

·       Attend East Sussex Maternity Voices Partnership meeting

Other disadvantaged or inclusion groups

·       Engaging with carers through one-to-one interviews, liaison with representative groups and questionnaires

·       Engage with homeless and rough sleepers through pre-existing relationships with supporting organisations such as Rough Sleepers Initiative, Matthew25 and YMCA

·       Liaise with the NHS Armed Forces Network and relevant organisations e.g. Blue Van Veterans, to ensure this cohort is heard from


Deprivation and socio-economic disadvantage

·       Utilise foodbanks to share paper copies of questionnaires with freepost address

·       Ask for support from RVA, HVA and 3VA and other relevant organisations to target those living in areas of deprivation.

*This list is not exhaustive but provides examples of the activities planned to reach marginalised groups



The Cardiology Communications and Public Involvement Task and Finish Group will be overseen by the Joint Cardiology and Ophthalmology Steering Group which reports to LMT.  An assurance oversight group with membership from Healthwatch, Local Authority and a Community Ambassador will be established to ensure the process is robust and there are no avoidable gaps in engagement.


Key principles

In undertaking communications and engagement around our formal consultation we will adopt a transparent, best practice approach based on a number of key principles:


·                Building on our wide range of previous engagement with local people and describing our journey, the purpose of our review and our intent to consult.

·                ‘Strength-testing’ all aspects of our thinking, planning and approach.

·                Acknowledging the importance our communities place on local services and our interest in all available feedback and insight to further inform our options.

·                Incorporating the findings from our Equalities/Health Inequalities Impact Assessment (EHIA) to help us identify the groups and communities we should target for our communications and engagement work.

·                Utilising our stakeholder mapping to ensure that we engage with all groups and partners with an interest in our plans including local councillors and MPs.

·                Approaching our conversations with transparency in relation to our financial challenge and our need to balance the sustainability of local services whilst offering high quality care, at the right time and place for local people.

·                Being transparent about the benefits and risks of our approach and testing our thinking on those.



Supporting information/materials



          EngagementHQ is an interactive platform that enables people to give their views and feedback on programmes and public consultations. For this public consultation a project page will be created which holds all important documents, promotes all engagement opportunities and encourages the public to share their views through the use of the official survey, quick polls, sharing stories, a live Q and A section and an ideas area.


          The CCG’s public website will also be updated with the correct documents and promotes the new webpage.







Consultation document

Available in print and on CCG website and EngagementHQ website

Information on the consultation, including all relevant documentation, to be widely shared by email

Communications lead

Easy Read Consultation document

Available in print and on CCG website and EngagementHQ website


Involvement Lead

Overseas language translated consultation summary

Top five languages translated

Will be translated further as required

Involvement Lead


Link on CCG website and EngagementHQ website; paper copies provided at engagement events and on request


Involvement Lead

BSL survey

BSL translated survey on CCG website and EngagementHQ website


Involvement Lead

Easy Read survey

Easy Read survey on CCG website and EngagementHQ website


Involvement Lead


On CCG website and EngagementHQ website


Involvement Lead


On CCG website and EngagementHQ website


Project team

Frequently Asked Questions

On CCG website and EngagementHQ website

To be updated during consultation

Comms lead/project lead


A4 poster, display in local hospitals, high street opticians, GP practices

“Have your say” generic message

Communications lead


A5 leaflet, available at local hospitals and GP practices, in any other languages identified as a result of the EHIA and our engagement. Also to be sent out with food parcels from foodbanks.

To include dates and details of key engagement opportunities

Involvement Lead


Draft consultation activity plan for the period 6th December 2021 – 11th March 2022

Note: some activity subject to change and confirmation of dates







October – November 2021


Key documents to be revisited including:

Pre-consultation Business Case

EHIA - reviewed to include any learning from Covid-19 and from the initial stages of the consultation (prior to the pause)

Engagement plan – updated engagement delivery plan recognising updated EHIA

Consultation document updated, approved and printed

Frequently Asked Questions - updated

Posters, flyers and leaflets updated, website approved and printed

Press release drafted and approved

Pre consultation launch :

16.11.21 onwards

Phone calls to identified stakeholders

Stakeholder briefing to be issued on day of Joint Committee

MP briefing

Reactive media statement in place

6th December onwards


·                 Consultation document and associated supporting documents published on East Sussex CCG website with link to complete consultation questions on independent organisation webpage

·                 Leaflets to be distributed via food banks, Community and Voluntary Sector (CVS) organisations and digitally via newsletters 

·                 Press release issued (including press release in British Sign Language)

·                 Tailored emails to:

Ø  Key stakeholders (based on stakeholder mapping)

Ø  Eastbourne Patient Participation Group members

Ø  Eastbourne, Hailsham and Seaford GP practices

Ø  Healthwatch East Sussex

·                 Social media posts

·                 Inclusion in GP bulletin

·                 Article in East Sussex Health and Social Care News

·                 Articles in local newsletters - ongoing

·                 Content sharing by key partners (e.g. ESHT, ESCC, Healthwatch, voluntary and community sector etc.) on social media, public websites, intranets, newsletters, etc. 

6th December- 11th March

·                 Social media posts continue until end of the consultation

·                 Reminder in GP bulletin

·                 Article in East Sussex Health and Social Care News

·                 Articles in local newsletters - ongoing

·                 Content sharing by key partners (e.g. ESHT, ESCC, Healthwatch, voluntary and community sector etc.) on social media, public websites, intranets, newsletters, etc.

·                 Tailored emails to:

Ø  Key stakeholders

Ø  Eastbourne PPG members and GP practices

Post Consultation and final report

·                 Tailored emails to:

Ø  Key stakeholders

Ø  ESHC public distribution list

Ø  Eastbourne PPG members and GP practices

Ø  CVS organisations who supported the public consultation

·                 Article on East Sussex CCG website

·                 Press release which includes highlights from consultation feedback report and a link to the full report

·                 Provide update and copies of the final report at all forums and groups that took part in the consultation



Engagement Activities 06.12.21- 14.03.21



Membership and provider engagement










Attendance at East Sussex Communications and Engagement Steering Group: distribution of materials including questionnaires, posters, etc.

Public Involvement Team


January 2022

Dedicated webinar for Eastbourne Hailsham and Seaford, Hastings and Rother, High Weald and Lewes and Havens locality members

Clinical leads


Patient and public involvement



Ongoing throughout consultation

Provide information on consultation to Sussex Health and Care Partnership, District, Borough and Parish Councils, community and voluntary sector organisations and relevant services and neighbouring CCGs and Acute Trust (particularly Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust): include material for distribution, questionnaires, web links etc. and offer attendance if requested:


HVA, RVA, 3VA, Southdown, Fulfilling Lives, East Sussex County Council Young People’s Services, YMCA, Red Cross, Citizens’ Advice Bureau, East Sussex Chambers of Commerce, Eastbourne and Hampden Park Libraries, Beacon Shopping Centre,  Maternity Voices, Action in Rural Sussex, Deaf Cultural Outreach Group (DeafCOG), Diabetes UK (local groups), St John’s Ambulance, Sussex Community Development Association, Sussex U3A groups, Armed Forces Network, Age Concern, Age UK, Amaze SENDIASS East Sussex, Churches Together Sussex, Friends, Families and Travellers, Rough Sleepers’ Initiative, Mathew 25, Salvation Army, Homeless and Rough Sleepers’ Service, East Sussex food banks, Leagues of Friends, Save the DGH, Save the NHS, Friends of the Conquest Hospital, Rainbow Alliance, Bourne Out, Possability People, MIND East Sussex, Grace Eyre, Amaze, HEART Hastings

Communications and Public Involvement team


06.12.21 onwards

Attendance at meetings:

British Heart Foundation

Sussex Heart Charity

East Sussex Disability Association

Care for the Carers – East Sussex

Autism Partnership Board

LD Partnership Board

East Sussex County Federation of WIs

Fellowship of St Nicholas

Hub on Rye Hill Community Centre

Oasis Community Projects (Ore Valley)

Rotherfield St Martin (community hub)

Pelham Community Hub (Bexhill)

Shinewater North Langney Neighbourhood Partnership (Eastbourne)

Blue Van Veterans

East Sussex Seniors’ Association

Dementia Alliances: Eastbourne, Hastings and St Leonard’s, Bexhill, Wealden, Havens

Deaf Cultural Outreach Group (DeafCOG)

Eastbourne Cultural Involvement Group

Seaview Centre St Leonards

Hastings and Rother Interfaith Forum (tbc)

Eastbourne Faith Forum (tbc)

Hastings Older People’s Ethnic Group HOPE-G

Hastings Age-friendly Community Coffee Mornings

Hellingly over-60s Coffee Mornings

Parent Carer Forums (via ESCC)

Black Butterfly (ethnically diverse communities, asylum seekers, refugees)

LGBTQ – contacts being investigated

Public Involvement team


06.12.21 onwards

Individual interviews with service users and carers

Public Involvement team


January 2022

Stakeholder workshops e.g. Patient Transport Services, Healthwatch, Community Cardiology Services

Public Involvement team



Local Voices Network – invitations to participate in events, links to questionnaires, regular updates on consultation progress


Public Involvement team



East Sussex Local Strategic Partnership Boards – information prior to and during consultation, updates re: consultation, offer to attend


Public Involvement team


30th November

4th December 

7th December   21st December

18th January

High Weald PPG forum

Eastbourne Hailsham and Seaford PPG forum

Hastings and Rother PPG forum

Lewes and Havens PPG forum

East Sussex PPG Steering Group


Public Involvement team



GP practices sent information on consultation including material for distribution, questionnaires, information for electronic screens, posters


Communications team


06.12.21 onwards

Telephone interviews offered to members of the public using dedicated telephone number, with Signlive assigned and interpretation available

Public Involvement team


January / February 2022

Public meetings: focus on communities identified by EHIA/Clinical Senate recommendations: focus on communities identified by EHIA/Clinical Senate recommendations:

Hastings/St Leonards: Hollington Four Towers - Eastbourne: Langney Community Centre - Rural Rother: Hub on Rye Hill Community Centre - High Weald: Uckfield Civic Centre

Chief Executive ESHT/CCG and clinicians


06.12.21 onwards

Public events e.g. Eastbourne Open Air Market, Rye Market, Hastings Priory Meadow, Hollington Tesco, Beacon Shopping Centre Eastbourne, Hailsham shopping centre, Crowborough Farmers Market, Seaford Library, Newhaven Country Market, Lewes Farmers’ Market. 

Public Involvement team



This is a live document and will continue to be added to during the consultation period.