Our Previous Work 2018

What is the issue?

Access to dentistry in Kirklees has been a massive issue for Healthwatch in the last 5 years with 60% of people we asked in 2016 not having an NHS Dentist. One comment we heard in a bus station in Dewsbury said “I go to the dentist every 6 months. I never have any work done, just a checkup.” We wondered why people in pain could not find a dentist, whilst others has check-ups for healthy teeth.

Why we covered this issue?

We wanted to see if we could help make a difference. If people with healthy teeth went to the dentist less, it could help create more capacity for people who are in pain.

What is the impact?

We hope to create access for more people to dentists for 2.6 million people in West Yorkshire, by asking people to look after their own teeth a bit better.

VIDEO: How often do you need to go to the dentist?

On the right you can download a video on how often you should visit the dentist.

LEAFLET: How often do you need to go to the dentist?

Click the download button on the right to view our leaflet about how often you should visit the dentist.

This leaflet was sent to every dental practice in West Yorkshire by NHS England.

From May 2018 we will be sharing this leaflet via our social media campaign around how often patients should visit the dentist.

What is the issue?

During 2017, Healthwatch Kirklees repeatedly heard stories from people who were struggling to return equipment they no longer needed; things like crutches, zimmer frames and wheelchairs.

People either didn’t know where to return it or, when they tried to return it, they were often told they’d gone to the wrong place or that the service didn’t want it back.

Why did we cover this issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees wanted to understand the issues people were having so decided to run an equipment amnesty during February 2018 so that people could return things quickly and easily and give us any feedback about their experience of trying to return equipment.

Healthwatch Kirklees are working with equipment providers and the NHS to make it easier for people to return equipment to the right place in future.

POSTER: Amnesty Poster - February 2018

Throughout February 2018, Healthwatch Kirklees ran an amnesty for crutches, walking aids and wheelchairs.

We encouraged anyone who had any unwanted crutches, wheelchairs or walking aids to hand them in so that they could be re-used in local hospitals and in the community.

The amnesty poster can be downloaded on the right.

The poster was shared via social media and community groups. Hard copy leaflets leaflets were also provided to GPs, pharmacies and nursing homes who did not have an online presence.

There was an overwhelming response to the amnesty.

MEDIA: Local press coverage

Click the download button on the right to view the press coverage from the Huddersfield Examiner.

UPDATE: What happened as a result of the equipment amnesty?

We are talking to local hospitals and Medequip who provide most of the equipment to people in Kirklees.

They are all keen to have equipment returned and Healthwatch Kirklees want to support these organisations to get clear messages to people about the different ways they can return equipment they no longer need.

UPDATE: April

Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust and Medequip collected the walking aids and equipment we collected in our amnesty.

The equipment will now be cleaned and re-checked to be given back out to hospitals and patients.

To see how much equipment we collected click the download button on the right.

UPDATE: Amnesty bin locations - June 2018

As a result of our work there are now amnesty bins throughout Kirklees where people can drop off their used walking aids and crutches to be recycled.

To view the map of locations click the download button.

What is the issue?

In early March 2017 we received information from patients in Kirklees and Calderdale, who had used the posture and mobility service, that they were concerned over long waiting lists and equipment which was unfit for purpose.

We also found that positive feedback was submitted to the Healthwatch Calderdale website from some patients who did not have complex or changing needs.

Why are we covering this issue?

Healthwatch felt that we could help improve the experiences of posture and mobility services for young people and people with complex wheelchair needs.

What is the impact?

Posture and mobility services in Kirklees and Calderdale provide support to approximately 10,000 patients.

UPDATE: March/April 2017

Healthwatch Kirklees staff met with two parent groups to listen to their concerns around wheelchair services.

An online survey was created to gather additional feedback.

REPORT: Healthwatch findings

Click the link on the right to view the report outlining the findings of the work completed by Healthwatch
regarding Posture and Mobility Services (Opcare), the organisation commissioned by the NHS to provide wheelchair services.

CASE STUDY 1

Click the download button on the right to see Ellie’s story.

CASE STUDY 2

Click the download button on the right to see Olivia’s story.

CASE STUDY 3

Click the download button on the right to see Lucy’s story.

CASE STUDY 4

Click the download button on the right to see Katie’s story.

CASE STUDY 5

Click the download button on the right to see Alex’s story.

UPDATE: May 2017

In May Healthwatch met with the Quality Manager for both Greater Huddersfield and Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Groups to discuss the issues people were experiencing.

The Healthwatch report and case studies were presented to the Clinical Commissioning Groups.

UPDATE: September 2017

Healthwatch Calderdale and Kirklees met with Opcare to discuss our report findings.

Issues with wheelchair services have been selected by Scrutiny panels in Kirklees and Calderdale.

A scrutiny committee is responsible for examining all functions and responsibilities of the Council.

The Committee is made up of councilliors from the local area and they help to ensure that the Council delivers its key aims and objectives, by creating an open, transparent mechanism for Councillors to shape, question, evaluate and challenge the Council policies, decisions and performance.

UPDATE: October 2017

During October 2017, further engagement with Opcare’s stakeholders was completed via an online survey; this was to ensure that everyone who had used wheelchair services had the opportunity to have their say, including carers for adults and staff who refer people to posture and mobility services.

MEDIA: Opcare apology

Opcare issued an apology to family members of deceased patients who received postal versions of the survey.

Click download to see the apology released by Opcare regarding their error around patient databases.

MEDIA: Clinical Commissioning Group Statement

On 29 November 2017, the Clinical Commissioning Groups released the following statement on Opcare’s Wheelchair Services.

REPORT: Scrutiny Committee January 2018

In January 2018, Healthwatch presented this issue to scrutiny committees in Kirklees and Calderdale.

Click on the download button to the right to see the committees response.

UPDATE: March 2018

We understand that Clinical Commissioning Groups in Kirklees and Calderdale have agreed to invest significant additional resources to reduce the current waiting lists for wheelchairs in Kirklees and Calderdale.

We are due to meet with the Clinical Commissioning Groups and Opcare in April 2018 to understand better what this means for people in both area’s, and will provide a more detailed piece of feedback after that meeting.” Rory Deighton Director Healthwatch Kirklees

UPDATE: May 2018

Healthwatch welcomes over £1m to clear backlog in demand for wheelchairs in Calderdale and Kirklees.

Kirklees and Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Groups have committed to invest over £1,086,409 by September 2018 to clear a backlog in demand for wheelchairs.

What is the issue?

Over the past two years we have heard stories from patients about penalty charges from the NHS Business Services Authority.

Penalty notices are sent to patients who have incorrectly claimed free dental or prescription charges. The charges include the cost of the treatment and also a penalty fine of up to £100.00.

Why did we cover this issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees think that people who are most vulnerable within our local area are receiving penalty fines incorrectly.

CASE STUDY: Patient Story

Click on the download button to read the story of Mr X who was charged a fine of £100.00 for his dental treatment.

UPDATE: Next Steps

Healthwatch Kirklees has sent Mr X’s story to the NHS Business Services Authority for them to review and provide a response.

UPDATE: Response

Click on ‘download’ to see the response from Chris Dawson, Operational Lead at NHS Dental Services in regards to Mr X’s dental penalty charge.

UPDATE: April 2018

We are currently working with the British Dental Association about this issue.

We have also written to Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to tell them we think that people are being unfairly fined.

We are awaiting a response.

What is is the issue?

Following public concerns about travel and transport around changes to hospital services in Huddersfield and Halifax, a travel and transport group was created to ensure that public concern was addressed.

Healthwatch is represented on the group by our trustee Tony Wilkinson and the group has an independent chair, Mike Grady, with a wide background from the NHS, and members from CCG, Hospital, Public transport providers, West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Kirklees and Calderdale Council, mental health
services, & public transport interest group.

UPDATE: December 2017

The group received presentations covering the
affects of the Right Care Right Time reconfiguration plans, Care
Closer to Home, road re-designs and improvements,
quantity and time estimates of possible reconfiguration
scenarios on public transport, and shuttle bus services,
and the group have asked the public to become involved and share their views.

A final report will be produced and uploaded here.

What is the issue?

When Healthwatch Kirklees heard that North Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) had some ideas which might improve health services for care home residents, we very much wanted to be part of the engagement process, to ensure that as many people as possible could hear about the ideas and have their say on things which may affect them in future.

Some of the ideas the CCG put forward involve better access to GP services for residents and using a Telehealth service, allowing carers and residents to have 24 hour access to clinicians via an online service.

Why did we cover this issue?

We know that too many people in care homes are taken to A&E when they’ve had an accident or become unwell; they often wait for long periods of time which can cause unnecessary distress and worry. We know that some of those people could be better cared if there was a more effective way for a clinician to carry out an assessment, sometimes without the patient having to leave their home, which would mean that only people experiencing serious, life threatening illness are taken to A&E.

People who live in care homes might find it more difficult than others to say what they think about health services available to them.

Healthwatch Kirklees invested time and resource to engage with staff, residents and visitors in care homes to make sure everyone could have their say on the CCG’s ideas.

VIDEO: Engagement video

Engagement with residents of care and residential homes ran from 11th September 2017 for six weeks. To view the video click the download button on the right.

REPORT: What did residents tell us

The final report of what residents told us can be downloaded on the right.

What is the issue?

The Calderdale and Kirklees Independent ME Support group raised various issues with Healthwatch Kirklees regarding diagnosis, stigma and support for people with ME.

The ME group asked Healthwatch to support them with sharing their experience with local Clinical Commissioning Groups.

What is the impact?

Approximately there are between 3000 and 5000 people in Kirklees and Calderdale who have ME or CFS.

UPDATE: April 2017 - August 2017

Staff collected written, audio and video experiences from people who have ME in Kirklees and Calderdale.

VIDEO: Case study video

Click download to see the video of what people told us about their experiences of having ME in Kirklees and Calderdale.

CASE STUDY: Patient story 1

Click the download button on the right to view patient story one.

CASE STUDY: Patient story 2

Click the download button on the right to view patient story two.

CASE STUDY: Patient story 3

Click the download button on the right to view patient story three.

UPDATE: November 2018

The experiences and stories we collected were sent to Greater Huddersfield and North Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Group with a request that they meet with the Kirklees and Calderdale Independent ME Support Group to discuss how services within the local area could be improved.

UPDATE: January 2018

A meeting between representatives from the ME support group for Kirklees and Calderdale and the Clinical Commissioning Group took place to discuss how patient experiences could be improved.

To view the outcomes and future actions of this meeting please click the download button on the right.

UPDATE: June 2018

Healthwatch Kirklees and a member of the ME support group met with a representative from Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group

What is the issue?

Kirklees Council wanted to ensure that respite provision within Kirklees met the needs of service users and carers.

Why did we cover this issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees wanted to share the councils new ideas with patients and carers which included additional community based options to respite.

What is the impact?

Approximately 400 people and families use the respite service in Kirklees.

VIDEO: Engagement video

We asked patients what they thought about pre-bookable respite care for older people and people with mental ill health.

To view the video click the download button on the right.

REPORT: What did people tell us?

Click the download button to find out what people told us about the future of respite care in Kirklees.

What is the issue?

If there is one issue that defines Healthwatch in Kirklees, it is access to NHS Dentistry. It was the first thing that people said to us when we started in 2013, and people ring us every single week looking for NHS dentists in Kirklees.

Why did we cover this issue?

We’ve never really stopped listening about this issue. We’ve taken it to our Health and Wellbeing Board, Scrutiny, NHS England and Healthwatch England. We’ve written reports, met with MP’s, talked to dentists and been interviewed by Radio stations and Channel 4. In the last 5 years this issue has got worse and worse, so we are committed to keep on taking it forward until we help change things for the better.

What is the impact?

The last time we asked, we were told that only 57% of the adult population in Kirklees had seen an NHS dentist in the last 2 years. We think that only 75% of children have an NHS Dentist. Based on the population of Kirklees this could equate to approximately 140,000 adults and 24,000 children.

The lack of access affects poorer communities more, and contributes to the overall picture of health inequalities. It affects our emergency and A&E departments in our hospitals who have to deal with people self medicating and in pain. It affects people’s ability to get a job. It makes people unhappy, it’s unfair, and it’s been going on for just too long.

VIDEO: NHS dentists in West Yorkshire

Click the link on the right to watch our video about which dental practices in West Yorkshire are currently accepting new NHS patients.

UPLOADED 21.03.18

VIDEO: Is dentistry in Kirklees being privatised?

Click the download button on the right to view our video.

UPLOADED 23.03.18

VIDEO: Could a new dental contract solve any of the issues in Kirklees?

Click the download button on the right to view our video.

UPLOADED 23.03.18

VIDEO: Help me find a dentist

Click the download button on the right to view our video.

UPLOADED 23.03.18

What is the issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees and Healthwatch Calderdale were contacted by a few adults with Autistic Spectrum Conditions (ASC) who were concerned about complications around diagnosis and accessing services locally.

Why did we cover this issue?

We wanted to have a better understanding of the issues that people with ASC face in Calderdale and Kirklees, so that we could tell the NHS system and improve people’s experiences.

UPDATE: June - September 2017

We designed two surveys, one for people with ASC to complete so that they can tell us about their experiences, and another one for the parents, partners and carers of adults with ASC to use to give us their views and ideas.

We collected real life stories to show how having an Autism Spectrum Condition can affect people’s lives. We visited a number of support groups for adults with ASC and their parents, partners and carers, in which we asked for people’s views .

REPORT: What did we find?

Click the download button on the right to see our full report.

What is the issue?

Healthwatch was asked by West Yorkshire and Harrogate health services to talk to patients, carers and the wider public, about what people thought about possible new ways of providing the care that they need when they have a stroke or care for someone who has.

The work was aimed at people who have experienced a stroke but did include methods to capture the views of the wider public also.

Why did we cover this issue?

Healthwatch across the West Yorkshire area agreed that patients should have the chance to shape the future of a stroke service by providing their views.

What is the impact?

In 2015/2016 3,633 people across West Yorkshire and Harrogate had a stroke and numbers are increasing year on year.

REPORT: What did we find out?

Click on the download button to read the full report of what you told us.

VIDEO: What did people tell us video

Click the download button on the right to watch the video of our findings.

What is the issue?

The NHS Choices website is the only site that provides patients with information on which NHS dentists are currently accepting new NHS patients.

In March 2017 the NHS Choices website was updated following a large number of complaints raised by Healthwatch, Which? and the Advertising Standards Association (ASA) around lack of information.

However instead of the March 2017 changes providing improvements in the quality of information available to patients Healthwatch Kirklees feel that we are now seeing an increase in dentists failing to supply any data at all on the website.

Why are we covering this issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees thinks it is unfair that the only source of information for patients looking for a dentist is inaccurate.

What is the impact?

Approximately 52% of the population of Kirklees do not currently have an NHS dentist.

UPDATE: March 2017

From March 2017, the website NHS Choices removed data from dental practices who had not updated their information in the last 3 months.

The majority of dental practices now have ‘data not available’ showing which Healthwatch feel is not acceptable when patients are trying to find an NHS dentist for example.

UPDATE: April 2017

We contacted MP Tracey Brabin who contacted all dentists in her constituency to remind them to update their NHS choices records every three months.

UPDATE: June - November 2017

Healthwatch monitored the NHS Choices website to see if the situation had improved.

MEDIA: December 2017

The lack of informationabout dentists on NHS Choices had been recognised as an issue nationally. Many dentists are simply not updating their information on NHS Choices, giving patients no information at all about where to go. Click the download button to see the national press article.

UPDATE: March 2018

Healthwatch Kirklees began a new campaign to highlight the issues patients are facing when using NHS Choices website to find a dentist.

The campaign asks patients to tweet or write a letter to Steve Brine the Minister of Dentistry to show just how many people cannot access information about their local NHS dentists.

VIDEO: NHS dentists accepting patients

The video for the campaign can be downloaded by clicking the button on the right.

MEDIA: Questions to Health Ministers: March 2018

MP Tracy Brabin challenges the Health Minister on how the failed dental contract is causing a crisis in access to NHS dentistry.

Click the download button on the right to find out more.

What is is the issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees regularly go out into the community to talk to people about their experience of health and social care services.

We’re always looking for different ways to engage people so we decided to take out some equipment to provide people with some basic health checks.

Staff and volunteers received additional training and our new approach is working really well so far.

REPORT: Why we think it's a good idea to offer free Body Mass Index (BMI) checks to people in Kirklees

Every person who has a BMI check is given a record card to take away which shows their height, weight and BMI and also an explanation about BMI guidelines and some contact details for organisations who may be able to offer information and support if anyone is concerned about their BMI.

Why we think it's a good idea to offer free heart rate monitoring tests to people in Kirklees

There are approximately 2,868 people in Kirklees who have Atrial Fibrilation (AF) but are not known to have by themselves or the GP.

The chances of having AF increase with age and AF is commonly associated with heart disease, high blood pressure, COPD (Chronic obstructive Pulmonary Disease), previous stroke or TIA (transient ischaemic attack) diabetes and dementia like illnesses.

We aim to reduce the risks of these illnesses by providing people with the information they require and ensuring they are checked by their GP regularly.

Frequently asked questions

What is the issue?

Evidence shows that physical and mental health outcomes are worse for people who are not born within the UK.

Healthwatch Kirklees felt it was important to talk to people locally to identify health issues, inequalities and barriers in newer migrants including asylum seekers, refugees and people from emerging communities such as Romania or Poland, to gain an understanding of the health and wellbeing situation in Kirklees.

REPORT: Engagement findings report

To view the full report of our findings click the download button to the right.

What is the issue?

In 2017 Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in Kirklees stopped automatic repeat prescriptions in an attempt to cut down on medicines waste.

When we go out into the Kirklees community we have heard a couple of stories that we wanted to share.

Why did we cover this issue?

We agree that there is significant waste in medicines in Kirklees and are committed to help with this issue. But sometimes restricting access to repeat prescriptions has unintended consequences that we wanted to share with the NHS.

What is the impact?

The new rules impact on all of the 440,000 people in Kirklees. It especially impacts on people that GP’s might call “vulnerable” such as elderly people who are housebound.

CASE STUDY 1

To view John’s experiences of the repeat prescription service, click the download button on the right.

CASE STUDY 2

To read Margaret’s story click on the download button.

UPDATE: MAY

We have shared our case studies with both Kirklees CCGs and are now waiting for their response.

What is the issue?

In the last 6 months we have heard stories from people who have had their Continuing Health Care packages changed and replaced with social care support instead. This is often for people with long term, severe illness.

Why are we looking at this issue?
These stories impact on some of the most vulnerable people in our community. We are concerned that funding pressures in the NHS are leading to assessments of people that are leaving people and their carers in a vulnerable position. We are aware of reduced CCG funding in this area, and want to understand the impact that this is having on patients and their carers.

What is the impact of this issue?
The numbers of people in receipt of CHC packages are small, but the impact on their families if packages are changed is often significant. We hope to be able to quantify the numbers of people impacted as we review this issue further.

UPDATE:

If you have a story to tell about Continuing Healthcare packages then please contact info@healthwatchkirklees.co.uk

UPDATE: March 2018

We are due to meet with representatives from the Continuing Healthcare team in April 2018 to explore this issue further, to see how many people this is impacting and to feed back some of the stories that we have heard.

What is the issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees received written confirmation from the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) that the Huddersfield Assessment Centre for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) Work Capability Assessments (WCA) was expected to close in June/July 2018.

We have now been told that the Huddersfield Assessment Centre has been closed from 10th September 2018.

We have been informed by DWP that a decision has been made to merge the Huddersfield assessment centre with the Halifax assessment centre.

The assessments are currently completed by a private company called Centre for Health and Disability Assessments (CHDA), who we have discovered is a company owned by MAXIMUS which is a global private corporation.

Why did we cover this issue?

After listening to the concerns of partners, community groups and local ESA claimants we are concerned that the decision to close the Huddersfield Assessment Centre will negatively impact approximately 18,000 ESA claimants residing in Kirklees.

What did we want to achieve?

We would have liked the DWP to ensure that the Huddersfield Assessment Centre to remained open in Huddersfield.

What did we do?

We asked everyone who is affected by this closure to write to the Secretary of State.

We wrote a letter to Esther McVey who is the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, to bring to her attention the unfair decision of closing the Huddersfield Assessment Centre and how this would affect the ESA claimants in Kirklees. To view our letter click the download button on the right.

We encouraged other organisations and individuals to get involved and share their experiences/stories by using our template letter (this can be downloaded below).

Healthwatch Kirklees has done a very similar campaign before, with success!

2 years ago Healthwatch Kirklees carried out a similar campaign for an Atos PIP Assessment Centre in Huddersfield, thanks to the joint efforts of MPs, Councillors and local community organisation the campaign was a success and Atos opened an assessment centre in the centre of Huddersfield.

BACKGROUND:

In February 2018 we attended a mental health group meeting in Huddersfield where we heard from a service user that there were rumours of the Huddersfield assessment centre closing down. The service user expressed their concerns about how this would affect over 17,000 (Kirklees Metropolitan Council Electoral Services) Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) claimants.

UPDATE: Contacting the Centre for Health and Disability Assessments (CHDA) and Department for Work and Pensions

On the 20th of February 2018, we emailed the Centre for Health and Disability Assessments (CHDA) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) asking them to confirm if there were any plans to close the Huddersfield assessment centre.

Click the download button on the right to see the response from the DWP.

22nd of February 2018

We received the following email from the CHDA:

“The DWP are responsible for all our assessment centres and as such, I have forwarded your enquiry to the DWP Health Services Directorate who will be in contact with you in due course.”

20th of March 2018

We received a response from the DWP confirming that the Huddersfield assessment centre will close in June/July 2018.

UPDATE: DWP Confirm Closure of the Huddersfield Assessment Centre in June/July 2018

20th March 2018:

We emailed the DWP requesting a discussion regarding the impact of the closure of the Huddersfield assessment centre on ESA claimants residing in Kirklees.

29th March 2018:

We received a response from the DWP advising that it would not be possible to discuss the closure of the Huddersfield assessment centre and that there is no potential for another assessment centre to be opened in Huddersfield.

Click the download button on the right to see the response from the DWP.

UPDATE: Feedback from local partners

We spoke to other local organisations to understand this issue better and to understand the impact on vulnerable people in our community.

We spoke to the Kirklees Welfare Benefits Service at Kirklees Citizens Advice Bureau, Connect Housing and local community groups in Huddersfield to understand better the impact of this on their users, especially those with long term conditions.

The organisations described the impact on people with a variety of disabilities across our whole community.

Click on the download button on the right to see the feedback from them.

UPDATE: Feedback from local ESA claimants

We spoke to local ESA claimants to understand what their concerns were regarding the closure of the Huddersfield assessment centre.

Click on the download button on the right to see the feedback we received.

UPDATE: Lack of consultation with local people

We had a conversation on the 4th of April 2018 with the DWP to ask them who they had spoken to in the community about the closure.

Through the discussion it was confirmed that no consultation had taken place with local disability groups, advice agencies or claimants in the affected area.

LETTER: Our letter to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

We have now written a letter to Esther McVey MP who is the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions ,to bring to her attention the unfair decision of closing the Huddersfield Assessment Centre and how this would affect over 17,000 ESA claimants in Kirklees.

We would encourage other organisations and individuals to get involved and share their experiences/stories by using our template letter.

Please click the download button on the right to view the letter template.

UPDATE: April 2018

We were contacted by Maximus on 17th April 2018 who wanted us to make it clear that the decision to close the Huddersfield ESA assessment centre had been made by the government and the DWP not by Maximus/CHDA.

We have amended our template letter accordingly.

LETTER: DWP response April 2018

The Department of Work and Pensions have provided Healthwatch Kirklees with a response to our concerns over the closure of the Huddersfield ESA assessment centre.

To read the letter, click the download button.

REPORT: Equality Impact Assessment June 2017

In addition to the letter above the DWP provided us with a copy of their Equality Impact Assessment.

An Equality Impact Assessment is a process designed to ensure that the plans do not discriminate against any disadvantaged or vulnerable people within the local area.

To view this document click the download button.

LETTER: Correspondence with MPs

The DWP have informed us that they wrote to MPs in July 2017 regarding the closure of the assessment centre. We are checking with the MPs about this.

To view a copy of the letter sent to Kirklees MPs click the download button.

LETTER: Correspondence with DWP

We have received another update regarding the closure of the ESA assessment centre in Huddersfield.

To find out more click the download button

LETTER: Our Letter to the Equality and Human Rights Commission

We have now written a letter to the EHRC.

Click on the download button to see the copy of our letter.

UPDATE: The Huddersfield Assessment Centre has closed

From 10th September 2018, the Huddersfield Assessment Centre provided by the Centre for Health and Disability Assessment (CHDA) has closed.

We thank everyone who joined us in writing to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, and we are keen to hear how this decision has affected people with health issues and disabilities. Please get in touch if you want to share your story.

We also want people to know that they have a right to request a home visit for their ESA assessment if their health issues mean they can’t leave their home. They can also claim travel expenses. There’s more information about this at this link, provided by Citizens Advice

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/employment-and-support-allowance/help-with-your-esa-claim/esa-medical-assessment/

What is the issue?

We are aware that Dr Ahmad will not be renewing his GP contact with Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group. His GP contact ends 30th June 2018.

Why are we covering this issue?
We understand that patients of Dr Ahmad may be concerned over their local health services. We are here to provide up to date and correct information to patients.

What is the impact?
Clifton House Surgery and the Nook Group Practice have approximately 4,500 patients who will be affected by the closure of the services.

LETTER: Letter from Clinical Commissioning Group

For more information download the letter form Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group regarding Dr Ahmads GP contact.

UPDATE: What do patients have to do now?

Patients do not need to do anything at the moment. The Clinical Commissioning Group who buy GP services in Kirklees are looking at a number of options including whether another GP is able to take over the practice.

All patients will be written to regarding the outcome of this process as soon as possible.

If the Clinical Commissioning Group are unable to find a GP to take over the practice, they will still write to you and advise you what to do next.

UPDATE: Who can patients talk to about this?

If you have any concerns or further questions, please get in touch with Clifton House and Nook Group Practice by calling 01484 465420.

You can also contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Services (PALS), which is based at NHS Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group. PALS provide information and advice about services and can also provide you with advice if you want to make a comment or complaint. PALS treat every enquiry with the same level of importance and the same level of confidentiality.

You can contact PALS on 01484 464 222 or contactus@greaterhuddersfieldccg.nhs.uk

UPDATE: FAQs

To find out more information regarding Dr Ahmad’s resignation please click download to view the frequently asked questions.

What is the issue?

This work explores whether we can use social media to start a set of different conversations with our communities.

It explores how we might use social media to start new conversations about the NHS in West Yorkshire and Harrogate, about wellbeing in all of our communities, and about what really makes us healthy.

Why are we covering this issue?

Whilst we rely on hospitals, GP’s, care homes and dentists to look after us, Healthwatch Kirklees think the thing that has the biggest impact on our health is how we live our lives.

REPORT: Final report

To view the final report click the download button.

REPORT: Apendix

To view the weekly social media posts and appendix, click the download button.

What is the issue?

Kirklees has a higher than national average number of ethnic minorities. These communities generally have lower interactions with services and for South Asian people with learning disabilities, this is further exacerbated since people with learning disabilities and their carers can be isolated socially and when it comes to accessing NHS or social care services.

Why are we covering this issue?

Healthwatch Kirklees decided to conduct research with the help of a peer researcher in order to gain more insight from South Asian people in Kirklees with learning disabilities and/or their carers.

REPORT: June 2016

The research collected showed there is a general dissatisfaction by South Asian people with learning disabilities and their carers when it comes to accessing information, help and support. Although some people find the information they need easily, it seems that people find accessing services to be frustrating and difficult, which can result in feelings of isolation, mental health issues and poorer outcomes for people with learning disabilities, whose needs aren’t being met.

To view the full report click the download button.

What is the issue?

5 years ago, one of the main issues people spoke to us about was difficulty getting an appointment with their GP and we still regularly hear that people are experiencing problems when trying to access primary care services. When we heard about the new ‘extended access’ schemes across Kirklees, we were interested to know what people thought about the opportunity to see a GP (and other primary care practitioners) in the evenings and weekends.

UPDATE: November 2018

Extended access schemes are now running in both North and South Kirklees – you can see more information about the schemes on the links below:

https://www.northkirkleesccg.nhs.uk/news/better-access-to-evening-and-weekend-gp-appointments/ (North Kirklees)

https://www.greaterhuddersfieldccg.nhs.uk/extended-access-primary-care/ (Greater Huddersfield)

Our engagement for this project only focused on Greater Huddersfield. In October 2018, a survey was made available online and this was shared widely on social media and through our contacts. Staff and volunteers also sat in the extended access clinics to gather feedback from patients who were using the service.

The findings will be available to view in December 2018.

Survey Results Infographic

An infographic to highlight the main points from the survey results data.

What happened as a result of the feedback people gave

Your feedback really does make a difference!
Take a look at how your feedback has helped to shape the delivery of the GP Extended Access service in Huddersfield,.

What is the Issue?

Children and Young people (C&YP) are under constant pressure all the way through school life. Exam pressure, body image issues and bullying are only some of the problems our children face. Healthwatch Kirklees and Healthwatch Calderdale are looking into some of these issues and have gathered data from wide reaching surveys such as Kirklees Young people Survey (KYPS) and electronic Health Needs Assessment (eHNA) from Calderdale. After analysing these surveys, as well as researching national and regional issues, we are beginning to find the issues that matter most to the children and young people in Kirklees and Calderdale.

We are hoping to go into schools and groups with planned workshops to gather feedback, concerns and comments. If you work with children or have access to relevant groups please feel free to contact us at any time at our office on: 01924 450379 or email rio.kisjantoro@healthwatchkirklees.co.uk

Why are we covering this issue?
We are concerned that Children and Young People are facing more and more pressure from all aspects of their life. We want to ensure the correct measures are in place for all year groups to protect the health and wellbeing of the children.