Every voice counts when it comes to shaping the future of health and social care services, and when it comes to improving it for today. Everything that Healthwatch Bedford Borough does will bring the voice and influence of local people to the development and delivery of local health and social care services. We will do this by:-
(1) Gathering views and understanding the experiences of people,carers and the wider community who use health and social care services, by:-
- Gathering the information that is already available and working with other local voluntary and community groups to understand local views and experiences of health and care services.
- Actively seeking the views of those who don’t generally come forward.
- Publicising information using good information governance, including confidentially, through a range of channels.
- Working in collaboration with the Care Quality Commission (CQC).
- Working in collaboration with other local Healthwatch organisations.
- Developing the skills to understand and interpret different kinds of data and information.
- Collating information as evidence to support recommendations to Healthwatch England and/or the CQC.
(2) Making people’s views known by:-
- Developing systematic methods of gathering views from local and national sources, particularly where there are gaps in information.
- Being responsive to what it finds out and report back on developments.
- Publishing findings and making them fully accessibleIdentifying causes for concern and celebration amongst the local community and feedback on these findings to the CQC and to local commissioners as part of an ongoing and regular dialogue.
- Using people’s views to influence the relevant decision-making bodies including local commissioning groups, Health and Wellbeing Board, Healthwatch England, CQC, the national regulators (including Ofsted) and the Secretary of State.
- Understanding existing arrangements in order to avoid duplication of effort.
To support this approach Healthwatch Bedford Borough is working in a "Network of Networks"(please see diagram in "Useful Documents") where it can utilise the considerable resources already available in the wider community and voluntary sector.