Report: Evaluation of Brighton and Hove’s Equipment & Adaptations Service

Our latest report highlights the views of service users and prescribers, of Brighton & Hove's Equipment and Adaptations Service.
The cover of the report, with text Healthwatch BH - Equipment Report Cover.png


This review of the Equipment and Adaptations Service was commissioned by Brighton and Hove City Council to inform the recommissioning process, due in 2023.

To support this process, this report presents the experiences and opinions of Service Users and Prescribers of the service.

Service Users

343 responses from Service Users were received.

The average age of respondents was 71.1 years.

From the 343 Service Users who responded to the survey, most were generally satisfied with the support they received regarding their equipment and minor adaptations:

Key Findings:

  • Most Service Users did not have any problems when waiting for their equipment.
  • Most were contacted by the Community Equipment Service (CES) when arranging equipment delivery.
  • Delivery and fitting occurred mostly on the agreed day and time expected and was to a good standard.
  • The equipment had ultimately helped most people stay at home rather than having to be in a care environment.

However, compared to the 2017 survey findings, a lower proportion of Service Users were ‘extremely’ or ‘very’ satisfied with the equipment they received from the service.

In 2021, 68% were ‘extremely’ or ‘very’ satisfied with the equipment (compared to 83% in 2017).

This may reflect:

  • The one in five Service Users who had problems when waiting for their equipment (however this could relate to waits outside of the providers’ control, including the waiting time for a clinician assessment and the prescription of the equipment).
  • The 17% who were not told how to report a fault or return the equipment.
  • The 16% who were ‘very unhappy’ with the quality of the installation of a ceiling hoist, ramp, or handrail.
  • The 16% who were ‘very unhappy’ with the politeness of the Customer Service Team.

A further finding was that the majority of Service Users would not use an online form, website, or App to manage their orders.

Although most people still needed their equipment, a sizeable 15% had equipment they no longer needed, suggesting that not all equipment is being recycled.


A total of 92 Prescribers responded.

Most Prescribers responding to this survey worked for Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust (51%), followed by Brighton and Hove City Council (BHCC) Adult Social Care (23%).

The Prescribers were highly satisfied with the CES in a number of different areas.

These were:

  • The general communication including telephone and email responses.
  • The ordering and process of orders.
  • Access to online information regarding catalogue items and non-standard equipment.
  • Access to technical information and advice from warehouse staff.
  • High levels of agreement towards the support from the CES online system and reports, and the level of equipment choice including spare parts.

However, there were also some concerns:

  • Nearly one in ten Prescribers said they were dissatisfied with the access to technical information and advice from warehouse staff, and access to online information regarding catalogue items and non-standard equipment.
  • Nearly one in five Prescribers said that installation did not happen on the planned date.
  • In terms of recycling, 13% of Prescribers said they did not review items of equipment that were no longer required when completing an assessment, and nearly two-thirds said they do not have access to a ‘Hand It Back’ postcard.
  • The use of online technology is limited, with only 37% using the IRIS system remotely.

13 recommendations are shown in the report.


You can download the report here, or contact us if you need it in a different format:

01273 234 041

Healthwatch BH - Equipment Report - Full
Healthwatch BH - Equipment Report - Executive Summary

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