Healthwatch Advisory Committee Meeting Minutes – 07/06/2023
Healthwatch Staffordshire Advisory Committee
Wednesday 7th June 2023 –
Committee Meeting Minutes
|Welcome and Apologies
No formal apologies sent.
|Declarations of Interests
|Chair to discuss direction of committee and interests.
ED opened with the celebration that Healthwatch is now 10 years old & expressed how proud & valued the service is.
Gratitude was expressed for the volunteers.
ED made everyone aware Health Watch England now have a New Chair, Professor David Croisdale- Appleby (who also chairs Durham University International Business School and Dementia UK alongside other ventures).
Highlighted how informative Healthwatch Future Focus Plan is and pleased that is a 3-year plan from 2023-2026.
BT demonstrated to the committee on the agenda and discussed Healthwatch updates.
|Work programme Project Updates/ Intelligence/Feedback update – Public issues
Power Point presentation given to the committee today. (Healthwatch Update) & the vision for Healthwatch Staffordshire over next 12 months.
The committee was made aware this was also presented at the South Staffordshire Wellbeing Select Committee yesterday evening Codsall.
Within this document was brief background on Healthwatch, meet the team, reactive and Pro-active work (including updates), Information on current Deep Dives and the outlook for year two 2022-2023.
BT made committee aware due to the reshaping of the service since the move from ECS to Support Staffordshire we no longer offer advocacy services or case work. That we now signpost to partner Asist. (can send Link)
The key issues being fed back to Healthwatch by members of the public continue to be:
Lack of Access to Primary and Secondary Care – Most complaints were around long waiting times, GP call times were extremely long and often people would be waiting in the que and being told they were number 40 or 50 in the ques just to finally get through and be told there were no more appointments today and call back tomorrow. Healthwatch is supporting with good signposting and IAG around residents calling their GP pharmacies or 111 number to be signposting appropriately to help them get their needs met. The feedback from carers groups has be well received and Healthwatch was praised for their assistance to help people calling in.
Lack of NHS Dentistry appointments – Most feedback Healthwatch is receiving is around NHS dentistry and lack of available appointments. Healthwatch has been helping to ring around different practices to help residents find practices who can take them on. Over 70 pieces of evidence has been fed back to Healthwatch England and Healthwatch England collated over 700 pieces of patient experience to used in the final session and inquiry by the scrutiny parliamentary scrutiny committee as part of the governments inquiry in NHS dentistry.
Issues around cost of living and winter – increased use of foodbanks, effecting people to attend appointments due to rurality and costs of transport to see a GP or for medication.
Long A&E waiting times and ambulances – Ambulance times are long and this is leading to people having to wait longer in a state of emergency, this is leading to more conditions for the patient. There have been cases of patients waiting on the floor for an ambulance for hours.
SR asked if ambulance service has considered using smaller vehicles.
NHS strikes – This is further impacting the waiting list times for operations.
Delays in hospital discharges – People entering into hospital due to frailty are then getting worse and this is then requiring more from Social Care to plug the cap to allow for a positive discharge. Healthwatch is now feedbacking to the various quality teams on prevention and better advice when people call in on the 999 number and to encourage family to help people at home. The fire services have been getting more involved to help with preventing falls.
Healthwatch Intelligence Network (HWIN) – has been increasing with many Support Staffordshire member as part of its own network. This has allowed Healthwatch to increase feedback from Staffordshire wide services and the impact of current Health and Social Care services are having on the patient experience. This feedback is two way and good practice is being shared.
Enter & View – HW can visit a range of NHS & Social care premises, we have a statutory power to gain entry & gain feedback from staff, patients and carers.
This enables us to produce reports with recommendations to improve services.
We don’t need evidence to enter but we want to remain a positive friend to encourage better practices and collaborative working.
ST George’s & George Bryant – discussion within committee to see if any feedback regarding the MH service and impact it is having on patients.
ED asked If considered using part of Sir Robert Peel Hospital for local community.
BT updated on the deep dive investigations and how these are progressing.
Year 1 deep dive investigations:
1. Accessing Primary Care face to face (”When I want to and when I need to”)
2. Being a Seldom Heard/LGBTQI+ patient/resident in the health and care system
3. Root causes of good and poor teenage mental wellbeing and Health outcomes
when you’ve been in care as a child.
Discussed size of Healthwatch team and set expectations.
Governance and Information Advice and Guidance.
Healthwatch remit (feedback and signposting).
Discussed Funding for Healthwatch and impact on hours of service to deliver positive discussions/challenges and changes.
BT to update Healthwatch website, removing old links & add partnership working. (Asist advocacy and other useful links. SR having trouble accessing some of Healthwatch & PPG’s.
BT to try and find out if HW should be doing some work with the public around what the feelings will be if GPs are considering potential strikes. (IN to share this with BT)
How retention of staffing in NHS is impacting on other services.
BT to ask DB about deep dive and how the closure of the George Bryant centre is Impacting the local area.
DH questioning the insurance on the George Bryant building and shared outcomes of some of these conversations.
BT to send Links for annual report and today’s presentation.
BT to gain information on how the new GP appointment system will work & feedback to committee.
|Any other business
BT made committee aware that he will share today’s presentation slides to the Health and Wellbeing board tomorrow.
DH raised questions around volunteers being used again with Healthwatch Staffordshire BT introduced CS new member of team and her role she will have with volunteers.
|Date and Time of Next Meetings:
Not yet decided. Motivation for a Face to Face meeting for the next meeting, Time & date to be confirmed. Possibly Civic Centre
First half will be Public and then second half private.
Chair – Healthwatch Advisory Committee