Healthwatch revisits Headway

March 12, 2024

We first visited Headway in November 2023 and took part in a guest speaker session to speak about the work of Healthwatch, as well as gathering feedback about health and social care services in Lancashire. 

During the session, we heard from members of the group about their experiences and supported members through offering signposting information as well as supporting one individual with appointment booking. 

We revisited Headway in February 2024 to follow up with individuals spoken to, as well as engaging with more members of the group. 

One individual who we spoke to at the first event, had shared that they were struggling to understand when their hospital appointment was due to only being send information electronically which was not accessible to them. During the session, we supported this individual by ringing the hospital on their behalf to get their appointment details as well as requesting any future communications being sent via a letter to their address. During the second session, we spoke to the individual who confirmed they had attended their appointment and were grateful for our support.

Other feedback gathered during the second session came from carers supporting members of the group. Feedback was mixed around the support available to carers, with one carer being happy with the support provided, one sharing that they have received no support a tall, and a further sharing that they had just received a diagnosis and did not feel they needed support at this time. Feedback was also received about a lack of support given at the time of diagnosis.

Personal experiences were also shared, with one carer sharing that they have been through major lifestyle changes since becoming a carer, including no longer being able to work. This has impacted their health which has continued to decline. They also shared their experience of carers support groups which are set up for carers but not their relatives. It was shared that this is not always useful  as carers cannot receive respite care in order to attend these sessions, which is often what they are looking for.

“I am a carer for a family member, and I feel I haven’t been given any support or help with anything. My health has declined since being a carer and I don’t feel I get any support with this. I was given a lot of information, and it is good information and accessible to me, but I can’t join them.”

We ensured to provide signposting information to all members and carers of the group who requested it, including Carers UK, Age UK, Lancashire Carers and Advocacy Focus.

We ended the session by telling the group about our upcoming project ‘Who can help me?’ which is exploring the experiences of carers supporting those with a neurological disorder. We agreed to send the survey over to the group when it is live, as they were keen to have their voices heard. 

Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed revisiting the group and it was a great opportunity to speak to members again to see how their experiences had progressed as well as meeting new people and offering signposting support. 

Do you have feedback to share about a health or social care service? There are plenty of ways you can do this:

Call us on 01524 239100

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Visit our independent feedback centre