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10+ things to do now I'm a member

Updated 15 June 2017

You may be wondering what you could be doing as a member to show your support for your NHS hospitals. Well here are 10 things we thought of:

1. Use your voice - membership gives members a 'voice' when the Trust discusses the future of NHS hospital services in north east Essex. This is done through the Trust's Council of Governors , one of the key elements of being an FT.

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2. Vote! - when an election is announced we will write to relevant members asking them to vote. Members vote for the person standing from their own constituency, e.g. 'Support staff member' votes for 'Support staff governor' or a 'Tendring public member' votes for 'Tendring public governor'.

3. Read our magazine - Mainstream, the magazine for members. We send it monthly to all our members on email. Or you can read it monthly here.

4. Follow us on Twitter! - @ColchesterNHSFT. If you don't understand Twitter, visit Twitter explained

5. Rumour mill - the rumour mill can sometimes take hold with inaccurate accounts going into circulation. So if you hear a rumour, send an email to and let us know. We will always try and establish the truth behind the rumour and let you know.

6. Read up about the Trust - browse our website and read the material you come across. Find out What is being said about our hospitals. Or use the search box on the left to find out specific things.

7. Find us on Facebook! - join our other friends and "like" us on our Colchester General Hospital Facebook page, and our Essex County Hospital Facebook page.

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8. Don't DNA if you're a patient - missed appointments, also known as 'did not attend' (DNA) appointments, are a serious problem for the NHS, not least because they increase wait times and prevent other patients from receiving health care sooner than they could. We bear the cost of resources and time used to manage every missed appointment. If you cannot keep your appointment

9. Tell us how you want to be involved - different people want to get involved in different ways. You may wish to stand as a Governor. You may wish to take an interest in the hospital by just reading the newsletter. You may wish to become a volunteer or do some fund-raising. Or you may want to help us recruit more members. Whichever way you want to get involved can we thank you in advance. Tell us your healthcare interests and the topics you want to hear about.

10. Check your data - if any of the details are wrong when we write to you please let us know. You can email

11. Sign up to our membership benefits. As a member you are eligible to join the Health Service Discounts scheme, with its cashback offers, discount voucher offers and a whole range of benefits. This is usually reserved for NHS employees.

12. 'Refer a friend' - recruit more members by visiting this webpage and referring your friends or family. The more members we have, the more representative we are of people who live in Essex and Suffolk.