The role of Healthwatch is to find out people’s experiences of health and social care services with a view to making sure they are meeting people’s needs, and to call for improvements where needed based on people’s experiences.
What does Healthwatch do?
Healthwatch has the power to make sure that people’s voices are heard by the government and those running services. As well as seeking the public’s views ourselves, we also encourage services to involve people in decisions that affect them. Our sole purpose is to help make care better for people.
In summary Healthwatch is here to:
- Help people find out about local care.
- Listen to what people think of services.
- Help improve the quality of services by letting those running services and the government know what people want from care.
- Encourage people running services to involve people in changes to care.
Healthwatch was established in 2013 and each local authority area has its own Healthwatch service. For details of Healthwatch services in other areas, click here.
How do we work?
Healthwatch is for everyone in our community – adults, young people and children. Every voice counts when it comes to shaping the future of services and improving them for today. Healthwatch will help people get the best out of their local health and social care services.
People often don’t speak up because they don’t think they can make a difference. We know that people can be unaware of the care and support that is out there. People can feel excluded from services and access to services and treatment isn’t always equal. Those who are least able to speak out will be heard through Healthwatch.
Every voice counts when it comes to shaping the future of health and social care, and when it comes to improving it for today. Everything that Healthwatch does will bring the voice and influence of local people to the development and delivery of local services.
Through our network of volunteers, working with existing voluntary and community groups, and our independent research, we can find out what matters to you most about health and social care. Together, your views and our expertise will help shape improvements for everyone.
We will use the information we gather to spot important local issues and trends. And we will carry out our own research into those issues that need more investigating, working closely with existing voluntary and community groups and the authorities.
Most importantly, we have powers in law which gives us influence. We will feedback what we discover to the authorities who have a legal responsibility to respond and use our findings to shape and improve services and feedback to you on the outcomes. This means you can be reassured that your views really do count.
How are we set up?
Each local Healthwatch is commissioned and funded by the Local Authority. In the East Riding of Yorkshire, the organisation who has been commissioned to ensure the effective delivery of the Healthwatch Service is Meeting New Horizons.
The Trustee Board of Hull CVS provides strategic leadership, promotes good governance and accountability on all contractual, legal and financial duties of Healthwatch.
Who manages your local Healthwatch?
The Healthwatch East Riding of Yorkshire Executive Team consists of members with varying specialties and experiences; they support the core duties of Healthwatch; delivering our statutory and contractual obligations to ensure that our communities voices are heard by those who provide and commission local services.
To find out more about your local Healthwatch team, please visit our Meet the Team page.
Who supports the local Healthwatch team?
Supporting our Executive Team is our Independent Advisory Group (IAG).
The IAG are a strategic partner to the Executive team, bringing added independent lay insight and overview regarding delivery of the annual strategic workplan and contributing to safeguarding the probity and transparency of Local Healthwatch.
You can find out more about the IAG, please visit our Independent Advisory Group page.
What powers do Healthwatch have?
Under the Healthwatch regulations, local Healthwatch organisations have the power to ‘Enter and View’ providers so that we can observe how services are being delivered.
The purpose of the visits are to identify good practice that can be celebrated and shared with others, and to identify any issues raised by service users.
Please out more by visiting our Enter and View page.