IN an unusual move, GPs are inviting members of the public to a family-friendly Patient Congress.

The idea of the Wednesday May 14 event - in Bowburn Community Centre, County Durham - is to give local residents the opportunity to find out how NHS services are going to develop in their area and to give them the chance to comment or make suggestions.

The Patient Congress is hosted by the NHS North Durham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

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Members of the public, including families, are welcome to attend the event, which lasts from 9.30am—1pm.

Those attending will also be invited to get involved with Patient Reference Groups, which can influence future decisions about health services in the area.

Activities will include stalls, healthy stir-fry samples as well as free health and community advice.

The event is fully accessible and a crèche will also be available free of charge.

The CCG will also reimburse travel expenses at a daysaver rate.

To book a place contact Anne-Marie Parkin on (01207) 529621 or at