Healthwatch Stockport AGM - Making Care Better in Stockport
Over 250 people spoke to Healthwatch Stockport about their experiences of health and social care services in the borough this year.
Our fifth Annual Report sets out what people think of current care and how we have helped services hear what works, what doesn’t and what local people want from care in the future.
As well as speaking to people who contacted us to share their stories, we’ve visited 27 local services to find out if they are meeting people’s needs. The published report outlines this work and what we have done to tell those in charge of local services about the improvements people would like to see.
We have also been able to help more than 100 people who contacted us for information and advice about health and social care services in 2017/18, as well as hosting and take part in over 30 events, Enter and View visits, presentations, working groups and more with the help of our 200+ volunteers.
To celebrate their work and the work of the Healthwatch Stockport team, we will host our Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, September 19, at Stockport Guildhall.
Running from 5.15pm to 7.15pm, we will be looking back over the work we have completed in the last year, and looking ahead to what we have planned for 2018/19. There will also be a financial overview and guest speaker.
How your stories are helping make a difference
- Annual Health Checks: When we asked people with a learning disability and their families about what matters to them, they told us that they were not getting the annual health checks they were entitled to.
“It always seems we have to fight for what should be routine practice. As an older parent of a son with Autism I am already tired”
We brought this to the attention of Stockport Clinical Commissioning Group with recommendations. They then helped raise awareness amongst GPs.
Now all GPs are aware of their responsibility and should be providing a comprehensive service.
- Home Care: Over the past year we worked with Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council to host a series of Afternoon Tea events to speak face-to-face with domiciliary care services users, families and carers.
We found that the majority of care receivers and their family were grateful for the support they received and they were usually treated with dignity and respect. However, the disparity in social care funding and continuing healthcare was highlighted as a huge divide.
“It’s the small personal things that do matter a lot to me and my family: It’s the little things that matter: not wiping feet, bothering to take their coat off, leaks with incontinence pads as they have not been put on properly, not putting a pot towel to dry, not folding clothes, socks not on properly”
Feedback from the events heavily influenced the recommendations for an increase in budget for care homes in Stockport and home support providers, which was passed by at the Council’s Cabinet meeting in February.
- Access to Dental Care: After receiving a number of phone calls regarding issues faced when visiting the dentist or when trying to access a dentist for the first time, Healthwatch Stockport decided to try and find out more about the difficulties local people were having.
“I used all my credit [on phone] to search and call dentists that were taking on NHS Patients, the information was all wrong on the website”
We ran a survey and visited 16 dental practices in Stockport, speaking to patients and staff to gather their views. A final report will be presented with our recommendations to the Local Dental Committee.
Healthwatch Stockport Chair Sue Carroll said: “We want to thank everyone who shared their story with us over the past 12 months. By coming forward and speaking about your experiences, you have helped to bring about real, positive change in our local health and social care services.
“Going forward, we hope more people feel inspired to talk to us and get involved. If it matters to you, it could matter to someone else.
“As well as continuing our work in areas such as home and dental care, we also hope people will get involved in our future projects which include dementia care, transition through services and engaging with black and ethnic minority groups.”
If you have an experience you would like to share – no matter how big or small – we want to hear about it.
Get with us to share your story, or book a place at our AGM, by calling 0161 974 0753 or visit www.healthwatchstockport.co.uk.