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Agenda item

Healthwatch Annual Report/Work Programme



Emma Whitby, Healthwatch was present, and outlined the report to the Committee, following which these main points were made –


·         Vision – Improved health and social care outcomes for local residents – Part of a national network, in which Healthwatch leads on impact measurement)

·         Part funded by LBI to fulfil statutory functions of Health and Social Care Act 2013 – Healthwatch gather, and report, on views on health and social care, and provide people with information on services

·         Healthwatch has a collaborative, critical friend approach, working in partnership, wherever it can

·         Healthwatch impact in 2019 - autism health checks for adults introduced, autism awareness training for GP practice staff, environment checks of GP practices being carried out by parents of children with autism, patients waiting for an ADHD assessment can now access peer support, whilst waiting for their assessment, and provision of sign language interpreting has increased. This will help deaf residents to access same-day GP services

·         More residents were reached in 2019 – 1400 people shared their health and social care story with Healthwatch, 40% more than last year. 197 residents participated in a Healthwatch digital inclusion workshop. 324 people accessed Healthwatch Islington advice and information service, and Healthwatch visited 53 services, and 25 community events, to understand people’s experience of care

·         Healthwatch partnerships – Healthwatch shares responsibility and finances fairly, and brings resources to small grass roots organisations, supporting their development through skills sharing and training, and valuing their experience

·         Healthwatch works with BAME communities with Diverse Communities Health Voice

·         Healthwatch works closely with Manor Gardens, Cloudesley, Elfrida Society, and are seeking out other partnerships

·         Healthwatch activities 2019 – Led on a community sector response to the Camden and Islington Estates Strategy Consultation, and responded to other key consultations. Supported resident engagement in Mental Health Day Centre specification design and procurement. Worked with Diverse Communities Health Voice, to gather BAME resident input on experiences of primary care social prescribing. Delivered two Islington Patient Group meetings on key topics of relevance to residents – supplemented by e-surveys, and community conversations. Visited care homes for older people to find out how residents are given choice, and control, of everyday activities, such as what to wear, and visited hospitals about the Accessible Information Standard

·         Healthwatch Work Plan 2019/20 – Continued to deliver signposting service to at least 250 residents, reflecting the diversity of the borough, has led a community sector response to the Moorfields strategy, engaged residents from protected characteristics in the Whittington Estate discussions, visited health centres to gather views on the NHS long term plan, held two Islington Patient Group meetings on topics of interest, worked with Diverse Communities Health Voice to gather BAME input on mental health support, and visited care homes for older people to find out about residents experiences of oral health care

·         It was stated that concern had also been expressed by some residents about hate crime and an event had been organised with the Police which had been successful. Emma Whitby stated that she would forward details to the Committee

·         In response to a question it was stated that Healthwatch did signpost residents to partners who could assist with the effects of austerity and changes to the benefits system

·         Reference was made to the fact that future work should include sheltered accommodation and home care

·         It was stated that a dementia partnership had been developed with UCLH and that this had proved successful, and a workshop had been held where residents were informed of services available

·         In response to a question it was stated that the challenges of austerity and BREXIT, together with reduced funding made for a challenging environment

·         Reference was made to GP on line appointments, and it was stated that this was not working effectively at present as not all GP surgeries currently offered this service



That the report be noted, and detail of hate crime, referred to above, be circulated to Members of the Committee



The Chair thanked Emma Whitby for attending and her presentation

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