Launch of the MYCCS phone app at Kingsway Hospital ion Derby.Pictured are  Kim Spencer, Ashley Toon, Michael Dwyer, Claire Wright, Wendy Slater, Kate Majid, Peter Sandison, Dan Illsley, Ian Johnson, Judith McCready and David Gardner.Photo by Fabio De Paola/UNPPatients across Derbyshire are to benefit from an app for smartphones and tablets which breaks new ground for the NHS in the way it improves people’s health and well-being.

The app – designed and developed by Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust – went live last week and also boasts a novel feature that enables users to be just a touch away from rating services and giving feedback on their patient experience.

This is designed to give the Trust a unique real-time insight into the quality of care it provides, equipping it with an important new source of information in an instant which it can act upon to improve its range of services.

A key benefit of the free-to-download app is the way it can be personalised to meet the different health needs of users.

It features an ‘appointment tracker’ which serves as a reminder for people to know where they need to be and when; and links to advice on what to do when they need help in an emergency.

It also offers users the ability to shape their own care plan for keeping well. It achieves this by enabling then to add ‘Dos’ and ‘Don’ts’ for staying well day-to-day; highlighting warning signs and trigger points; and listing sources of help for staying on top of their recovery process. This can also be emailed to family, friends and carers.

There is a wealth of general information about all the Trust’s services and locations, as well as a ‘plain English’ summary of its Core Care Standards – which set out the minimum rights and expectations that the community can expect throughout their care.

The Trust provides mental health, drugs and alcohol/substance misuse, and learning disability services to adults, as well as a range of specialist services to children, across the county.

Its Chief Executive Prof Steve Trenchard said: ” As well as a caring organisation, we are a listening one too.

“This app not only gives the community we serve greater ownership and control over improving their own health, but it also adds a new dimension to the way we improve services by capturing their comments and experiences in an instant.”

He added: “Today’s launch of the app marks an important step forward for us as we continue our journey to be at the forefront of healthcare technology and cement our position amongst the top performing Trusts in the NHS.”

Users of the Trust’s services have played a key role in shaping its Core Care Standards ¬†and the development of the app. One of them, Jonathan Norton, said: “This is a real commitment to honesty, openness and transparency.

“It is a resource for patients as it is a resource for staff. The Trust have committed that it won’t stop here – it is a dynamic concept – over time the Trust will seek to drive standards even higher.

“I believe this is something the Trust can justifiably be proud of and I congratulate it on it. Nothing is perfect and I, with other service receivers, will hold it to account. That’s how we learn, that’s how we improve.

“As a service user of the Trust for many years – including six acute admissions and very many years of support in the community – I can attest to so much positive change by letting service users in to influence service development and how they are delivered.

“That’s why I see it as ‘my Trust’. We are all stakeholders working together.”

The app can be downloaded by searching for ‘My CCS’ on the Apple App Store, Google Play, or Blackberry World.