Healthwatch aims to help users of health and social care services have a voice on the quality of their care. In doing so, we are particularly committed to helping disadvantaged communities have a voice. Whether it be disabled people, ethnic minorities, or LGBT communities, among others, we aim to gather views from these populations and work with commissioners to act on these views to improve services.
So how successful is Healthwatch at reaching these communities and getting their views?
Our recent GP patient survey provides a useful measure of our performance in this respect. The survey ran from June until October gaining submissions from 1,460 GP users across the city covering all GP practices.
The figures suggest that the survey did relatively well in reaching disadvantaged communities. 10% of responses were received from lesbian, gay and bisexuals who represent 11% of the city population. Healthwatch did particularly well in reaching the Trans population, 1.5% of responses compared to 0.9% of the city population.
Healthwatch also did particularly well with disabled people, who represented a third of responses compared to 16% of the city population.
For ethnic minorities there were more mixed results. Healthwatch achieved good results for Asian/Asian British and Other Ethnic groups, reaching or exceeding the city population. However, Healthwatch received weaker results for Black/Black British and Mixed groups, with responses slightly below the population for the city.