The waiting game

Since March 2020 we have had a lot of feedback from the public telling us about delays, difficulties and changes in NHS and social care services, due to the Covid-19 pandemic affecting how these services were run. Healthwatch Kirklees and Healthwatch Calderdale worked collaboratively during 2021 to collect the experiences of people living in Calderdale and Kirklees during the Covid-19 pandemic who had experienced delays to health and social care for non-Covid related conditions since March 2020.

NHS Report Delivery Plan For Tackling The Covid-19 Backlog

Council and Clinical Commissioning Group Engagement Covid-19

We wanted to get a clear picture of how those delays had been impacting on people’s health and wellbeing, and what kind of support they had been able to access. We asked people about the kind of support they would have liked, how effective they had found video and phone appointments, and how they would feel if they were offered NHS treatment further away from home, or at a private hospital (as an NHS patient, if that meant they would be seen sooner).

We also took the opportunity to ask whether people would seek medical help for a serious or worsening condition during the pandemic, if they could change one thing about the NHS what that would be and finally, we asked people to tell us one thing they needed to help improve their health and wellbeing.

Access to services - people reported having difficulties making appointments to see GPs face-to-face, not receiving expected follow-up care or diagnostic tests in a timely manner and delays in accessing specialist services.

Related Reports

Care home residents and access to GP services

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.

Social care General Practitioner (GP)
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Experiences relating to medication during the Covid-19 pandemic

“I still need my medication, even in a pandemic!” 

What people in Kirklees told us about ordering, receiving, changing, and reviewing their medication in challenging times 

Engagement Covid-19
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Health and care experiences of Kirklees residents during the Covid-19 outbreak

To gather a full understanding of the experience of health and care services during the Covid-19 outbreak, over a period over of 12 weeks (end of May to end of August 2020) Healthwatch Kirklees used a variety of different engagement approaches and tools including a survey and virtual focus groups to talk to people living and working in Kirklees.

Engagement Covid-19
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