The Chief Executive Office (CEO) of the Health Service Executive (HSE) and the Department of Health and Children (DoHC) commissioned this literature review as part of its work under 'The HSE Corporate Plan 2005-2008' (HSE 2005) and 'Transformation Programme 2007-2010' (HSE 2007); both of which commit to improving peoples experiences of our health and social services as a key priority. It is envisaged that this review will act as a resource for helping to build a health service that 'is committed to learning from the experience of our service users, partner service providers, staff and other stakeholders' (HSE 2005) and is part of the foundations on which the 'strategy for service user involvement in the Irish Health service' will be built (HSE and DoHC 2008).
The main focus of this overview has been on literature documenting:
- Models of service user involvement
- Arguments for and against service user involvement
- Mechanisms for service user involvement
- Addressing the challenges to effective service user involvement
- International developments in service user participation.