More about Patient and public involvement

Patient and public involvement (PPI)

Patients' Panel

The trust has had a Patients’ Panel since 2003. Members are not representatives of other organisations but are just a small group of ordinary people living in West Hertfordshire who have been, and in several cases currently are, patients of the trust. They have been invited by the Trust to join the Patients’ Panel as individuals because they have shown a positive interest in its work and a willingness to devote time to bringing a patient's point of view into improving what the trust does.

The Panel has been described as being a ‘critical friend’ of the trust – supporting the Trust in many ways but not hesitating to act when finding things to criticise, and then helping to put things right.

The Panel has access to all levels of the trust’s management and can, as a group or individuals, visit any ward or clinic in the trust’s three hospitals at Watford, Hemel Hempstead and St Albans. Good relations have been established with nurses, doctors and administrative staff, building up mutual respect and valuing each other's contribution to patients' care and concerns.

At present there are 6 Panel members: Chair, Gill Balen; Gwen Andrew; Sean Bolton; Pauline Dolling; Tom Drabble; Leight Hutchings; Frances Kippling; Jo Tyldesley and Wendy Wilson.

Gill Balen, Chair

Gwen Andrew

Sean Bolton

Pauline Dolling

Tom Drabble

Leigh Hutchings

Frances Kipping

Joanne Tyldesley

Wendy Wilson

The Panel takes part in many working groups set up by the trust. These include:

If you recognise a panel member and have the time, do stop and talk to them as they would love to hear your views, as a patient or carer, on how the trust is doing and how it might improve.

For further information on the Patients' Panel or an opportunity to talk to the Patients' Panel Chair, Please contact: Colette Datt Lead Nurse Patient Experience on 01923 244366  or email

Updated March 2018

Become a member of the Trust's Patients’ Panel

Come and make a difference to our patients, carers and relatives by becoming a member of the Trust's Patients’ Panel. For further information on how to become a member of the Panel or to request an application please contact Colette Datt Lead Nurse Patient Experience on 01923 244366  or email

Documents for download