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The Muslim Network Health Collaboration is an umbrella organisation for the Muslim networks of Public Health England, NHS Improvement, Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England.

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Building awareness and care quality

The Muslim Network Health Collaboration represents a collaboration of voluntary Networks across the health space to provide health staff with a strong, unified voice so that issues facing them are heard at a senior level. The Collaboration also has a significant focus on improving the health and wellbeing of the Muslim communities we live in by focusing on awareness of various health issues and faith sensitive policy setting.

On the external front, the Collaboration works with a number of health agencies, including NHS England & NHS Improvement, Public Health England and the Department of Health & Social Care, to tackle health inequalities in Muslim communities. This is achieved by providing these health agencies with access to harder-to-reach parts of the Muslim community and to provide a feedback loop so issues facing Muslim communities are addressed and considered during policy setting.

A great wealth of research exists suggesting that Mosques and other faith institutions can play a key role in improving the health of various communities. This is because they are institutions that are already public facing and they are used frequently by the elderly who might not otherwise be accessible to health authorities. And because of the trust element, they are a great way to get health messaging out to harder-to-reach parts of the Muslim community, even women, whose children would normally attend classes in the Mosques.

As such, the Collaboration have carried out government health pilots across the country, collaborating particularly with mosques, community organisations and charities to help policy reach members of different communities who might otherwise have found the information and consultation inaccessible.

Alongside the focus on giving health staff a unified voice, the Collaboration is also interested in ensuring the development of members. As a result, we run a number of professional development workshops and schemes, aimed at developing soft skills and developing confidence in the workplace. This is in addition to the work we do to buddy Muslim health staff with others in their respective field and mentoring so staff can overcome any barriers to senior leadership.

Finally, the Collaboration has a further aim of developing faith literacy and faith sensitivity in all areas, both internal to workplaces and external in practice. The Collaboration is dedicated to showcasing new research and faith sensitive resources to improve people’s understanding of the Muslim community so that more faith sensitive policies can result.

Conferences

The mental health policy event focusing on diversity but also working with community organisations and achieving pledges to the PHE Mental Health Concordat

Our strategy for 2020

Supporting our organisations’ strategic objectives, developing network members, ensuring appropriate provision in all NHS Estates, developing faith literacy and cultural sensitivity, improving the structure of the network and increasing regional presence

Strategy

The cancer screening event with NHS Chief Executive Simon Stevens arranging for further work with Sir Mike Richards on cancer screening in the Muslim community

Collaboration

The national pilots across selected mosques in the UK for various health topics. Working with the DEFRA permanent secretary and Civil Service Faith and Belief Champion, Claire Moriarty, on creating the ‘Let’s talk about Faith’ Programm

Professor Gina Radford

DCMO and DHSC Faith and Belief Champion, said:

As DHSC’s Faith and Belief Champion, I very much welcome the offer the Muslim Network is making to support colleagues both in terms of helping inform our policy-making, but also at an individual level – on any questions and issues anyone may have about Islam. We are fortunate to have a number of networks across the DHSC family that cover a number of religions and beliefs. I would really encourage colleagues to engage with the relevant networks as appropriate.

The Muslim network is a good example of how networks can help – whether directly by feeding into policy which affects the Muslim community, by helping us engage with its partner and community organisation links, or offering individuals information, support and advice.

Going forward

The Muslim Health Network Collaboration is now looking to work more closely with policy teams in central government, using this direct link to aid policy work through consultation and collaboration with different organisations. In doing this, we can help carry out departmental aims and objectives through new and innovative ways, reaching communities and demographics that find it harder to access certain services and knowledge.

We are looking to grow our network by holding more awareness sessions and events on various religious practices. These may be of interest to anyone who wants to find out more about Islam, in order to be mindful and inclusive of the differences that colleagues have in beliefs and practices.

Email us

Say hello: contact@muslimhealthcollaboration.co.uk

The Muslim Network Health Collaboration is an umbrella organisation for a number of voluntary networks across the health space, including the Muslim networks of Public Health England, NHS England & NHS Improvement and Department of Health & Social Care.

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