212 shared their experiences of care and wellbeing with us during the peak of the Coronavirus period but we're still collection data and will produce further updates outlining people's views, needs and experiences at regular intervals.
Here are the headlines from the report:
- People wanted to feel safer when accessing care and support. They were concerned about the way that social distancing was observed, the lack of clarity over PPE arrangements and safety both on the way to and in clinical settings
- Virtual appointments had a mixed reception with the determining factor in whether or not people accept this sort of support is whether the care that they receive addresses their need in a timely fashions. Some people told us that they had better access to care such as GPs appointments but those who needed a face to face assessment or procedure (e.g. dentistry, blood tests) felt that their needs were not met through virtual appointments
- Significant numbers of people struggled to access dentistry and prescriptions during the crisis period
- Those who are less confident about using the internet have reported difficulties with accessing care online (i.e repeat prescriptions) and there is a growing digital divide
- Many people reported of not seeking care because "they don't want to burden the system"
- Loneliness and isolation represented the most significant issues cited by the wellbeing survey respondents
- Vulnerable individuals were concerned about accessing food, medication and transport to healthcare appointments
- Carers carry a significant burden since the crisis begun and often did not have the information that they need about how to continue caring safely or about how to access testing.
As the NHS, community services and social care recover from the crisis, people need to know how to safely attend appointments and services. For many accessing support or care will be the first time that they use transport. Signage, visual aids, practical advice and support may about how to manage social distancing will be important in giving people confidence to reengage with services.
Loneliness and isolation were amongst the most significant issues cited by respondents to our wellbeing survey and we anticipate that this need will continue as people remain isolated to reduce their own risks of contracting and spreading the virus, for example through social distancing, shielding and self-isolation.
Multiple options including virtual, phone and face-to-face appointments will be needed to meet the communities needs and people must be reminded that support is still available (e.g. "NHS is open" campaign) and should be sought when needed.
Additional effort should be put in to reaching the digitally excluded, non-english speakers BAME communities, carers, people with long term conditions and those who are classified as vulnerable.
To download and read the full report please press the button.
Have you shared your experience yet?
It is not late to help us understand more on how care and support services have changed during the Covid-19 pandemic, how they are working for you and how we can support meaningful improvements that matter to you.
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