RESIDENTS of the Durham dales are being encouraged to join a forum which makes decisions on how their local health services are run.

The Patient and Public Involvement forum for the Durham Dales wants new members to help to deliver existing work programmes and bring new issues forward to help improve health in the dales.

The forums are independent statutory bodies with powers which place local people at the heart of health decisions.

The Durham Dales forum is working on a range of issues including supporting parents who are carers for young people with learning disabilities and the impact of Nurse Practitioners.

Ian Wood, the chairman of the Durham Dales forum said: "In the 13 months since the PPI Forums started in the Durham dales, we have identified issues that reflect the concerns of local communities."

Anyone wanting to become a forum member can contact Jane Morris, the recruitment and membership officer, on 0191-448 4300.