Measures for Covid well-received
Covid-19 measures were, on the whole, well received by patients, with one recommendation being made to allow, where appropriate, an additional person to attend a triage appointment, to increase understanding between patient and clinician.
Suggestions made by patients
A small number out of the 74 respondents felt accessing urgent and emergency care services would lead to a face-to-face consultation with a clinician and had chosen to access them as an alternative to primary care. This was highlighted as a potential issue for services with the onset of winter pressures.
The report was very positive with a few suggestions being made for improvements that the patients thought could potentially enhance their experience in the future.
Listening to patients’ experiences of urgent and emergency care during August 2020 was a follow up to the project undertaken by Healthwatch volunteers in September 2019.
However, the Covid-19 restrictions meant that the engagement strategy had to be completely revised in order to gather the experiences of patients. Healthwatch Doncaster volunteers and Volunteer Co-ordinator devised a method for gaining consent for volunteers to contact patients after their visits.
Patients have their say
With the co-operation of services, this led to a good response with 85 people giving their consent to be contacted. Healthwatch Doncaster’s volunteers asked what people thought had gone well, not so well, what could have been better and how they felt about the Covid-19 measures that were in place at the time of their visit.
Sandie Hodson, Healthwatch Doncaster Volunteer Co-ordinator and Project Lead said:
"Engaging with people is something that our volunteers excel at and their input has been invaluable. I am very proud of what has been achieved in spite of the current restrictions on face-to-face engagement.
"The volunteers contributed a lot of time and energy to making the calls and capturing how people felt about their experience of Urgent and Emergency Care."
In a joint statement from Fylde Coast Medical Services (FCMS) and Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals, a spokesperson said:
“We would like to thank Healthwatch Doncaster who kindly undertook this independent survey. Patient feedback is invaluable to us as service providers, and helps us improve – something which, given the challenges of the past six months, is now more important than ever.
“It is reassuring that patients have consistently described our services as efficient, professional, approachable and accessible for all. This is a reflection of the fantastic work undertaken by colleagues, and for that we share our thanks.
"We also recognise that we don’t always get it right, and this feedback will be used to make further improvements to ensure that we are always learning for the experiences of our patients, and developing our services to meet expectations."
The full report can be viewed on our website:
Notes to editors:
Healthwatch Doncaster is a Community Interest Company as of 1st July 2016, to continue its work across Doncaster supporting the improvement of health and care services through engagement, involvement and influence.
This entails engagement work throughout the community and signposting people to the right service.
Press release contact:
Healthwatch Doncaster Engagement and Volunteer co-ordinator Sandie Hodson:
Healthwatch Doncaster Chief Operating Officer Andrew Goodall: