RCPCH Ambassadors - advocating for children in Integrated Care Systems (ICS)

Our volunteer RCPCH member Ambassadors across England advocate locally for children, young people and the workforce that serves them. Find out more about what our Ambassadors do, where they are based and how you can apply for this role.
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Last modified
2 February 2023

Why RCPCH Ambassadors?

The RCPCH Ambassadors programme was initiated in 2019 in response to the planned devolution of service, workforce and financial planning responsibilities to Integrated Care Systems (ICS).

Integrated Care Systems are partnerships that bring together providers and commissioners of NHS services across a geographical area with local authorities and other local partners to collectively plan health and care services to meet the needs of their population. Since April 2021, all parts of England have been covered by one of 42 ICS and in July 2022 the Health and Care Act put them on a statutory footing. 

This presents a great opportunity for improving and integrating services, however, ICS have many competing priorities. It is crucial that the needs of children and young people (CYP) are considered and prioritised in every ICS in England in order to deliver the commitments set out in the NHS Long Term Plan and to improve the health of CYP across the country.

ICS also have responsibility for workforce. In order to meet the needs of CYP it is essential to have robust planning to ensure that there is an adequately resourced paediatric and wider child health workforce able to provide the highest quality care to children and young people.

The role of Ambassadors is to locally advocate for the needs of children and young people and the workforce that serves them to be understood and prioritised within the Integrated Care System. 

Who are RCPCH Ambassadors?

RCPCH Ambassadors is an England-wide network of volunteer RCPCH members that use their clinical expertise, local knowledge and medical experience to create change for children and young people in their area by engaging with their local ICS.

What do RCPCH Ambassadors do? 

  • Advocate for the integration and improvement of local services in ways that benefit children and young people.
  • Advocate for the local paediatric and the broader child health workforce
  • Communicate workforce knowledge, child health data, quality standards and guidance held by the RCPCH and other organisations.
  • Share progress made by the ICS in relation to children and young people
  • Amplify children and young people’s voices and rights within the ICS to inform, influence and shape better care and better outcomes.

Since becoming an RCPCH Ambassador, I have not only been able to create new professional connections outside the hospital, but by learning about good practice across the nation, now have the space to think about what should happen next in my region. Personally I think this role highlights and recognises that leaders exist at all levels, as now I feel like an effective learning leader.

Dr Prabhu Rajendran, Ambassador for Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes ICS - more in his blog

I'd like to become an RCPCH Ambassador - how do I apply?

We are recruiting for RCPCH Ambassadors in a number of areas across England (see map below). Our last round of recruitment ended on the 8 December. We will be reopening applications on 9th January 2023.  

I want to talk to my local RCPCH Ambassador - how do I do this?

Below is a map which shows where we currently have Ambassadors in post and where there are vacancies. If you would like to contact your local Ambassador email ambassadors@rcpch.ac.uk. If you would like to apply for a vacant role apply here.


You can also view this map in a new browser tab.