Healthwatch, NHS and local people in collaboration: Southeast Regional Conference, 28th June 2022

Healthwatch Brighton and Hove led the organisation of a regional conference, alongside other local Healthwatch partners in East Sussex, West Sussex, Surrey, Kent and Meadway.
HW Regional Conference
"The Healthwatch Regional Conference came at a crucial time...focusing on what Healthwatch does best, interrogating the detail, questioning the NHS jargon, and providing timely meaningful critical feedback."
— Tom Goodridge, Public Involvement Manager for West Sussex, NHS Sussex (Participant)

The event took place at the Amex Stadium, Brighton. 75 people registered for the conference. We had 65 physically present on the day, with all non-attendees requesting the post-conference notes. The day was split roughly into two parts: keynote speakers gave presentations with questions and answers (Q&A) in the morning; presentations and discussion groups in the afternoon. One keynote speaker joined us online. Attendees were given the option of submitting questions in advance as well as in person, on the day.

The schedule of the day is below, including: 

  • Presenter slides,
  • Questions submitted in advance, responses of which were provided by speakers in the Q&A sessions, and
  • All recordings made on the day.

Recordings include: 

  • Conference Chair's Introduction and closing summary.
  • Keynote speeches
  • Q&A sessions with keynote speakers
  • Afternoon presentations 
"It was thought provoking and useful and helping me shape my work for the future."
— Participant: Helen Rice, CEO, Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove

Schedule

Questions submitted in advance

Conference Chair: Geoffrey Bowden, Healthwatch Brighton and Hove

Introduction by Conference Chair: Geoffrey Bowden, Healthwatch Brighton and Hove

Morning Session - Keynote Speakers (please note that some speakers did not provide slides)

Afternoon Session - Presenters:

"We have forged a firm foundation to both challenge and collaborate with the Sussex Health and Care system on behalf of patients and the public."
— Conference Organiser: David Liley, Chief Officer, Healthwatch Brighton and Hove
"The conference was a great step in further engagement and understanding between Healthwatch, the VCSE, and the newly formed NHS Sussex."
— Keynote speaker: Louise Ansari, Healthwatch England Chair
"I was particularly struck by the pivotal role that Healthwatch will have in both scrutinising and supporting the design of services.”
— Conference Chair: Geoffrey Bowden, Healthwatch Brighton and Hove
"The Healthwatch Conference was a great opportunity to discuss how we can work together to improve the delivery of health and care services in Sussex and the high level of engagement in the room was fantastic.”
— Keynote speaker: Stephen Lightfoot, Chair, NHS Sussex, Keynote Speaker
"The desire to involve Healthwatch and the VCSE sector was encouraging. I hope this new approach will lead to more transparency and greater prioritisation of local needs."
— Participant: Chris Jennings, Healthwatch Volunteer

What people said about the conference

“The morning was very useful and thought provoking, to hear the range of perspectives. I hope the discussions will ensure we can work even more productively together across organisations.”
Becky Shaw, CEO, East and West Sussex County Councils, (Keynote Speaker)

"The speakers were extremely interesting, especially Stephen Lightfoot, who explained the new trust system and working with local charities. I think the charities that attended really benefited from his, and the other speakers, interaction." Elaine, Healthwatch Volunteer (Participant)

"The Healthwatch Regional Conference came at a crucial time, with the NHS Sussex beginning its transformation journey. The conference focused on what Healthwatch does best, interrogating the detail, questioning the NHS jargon and providing timely meaningful critical feedback. Great to explore the big health and wider determinants topics with a great variety of attendees. The conference itinerary flowed very well and allowed for in-depth discussion." Tom Goodridge, Public Involvement Manager for West Sussex, NHS Sussex (Participant)

"It was thought provoking and useful: full of people I’ve wanted to connect in person with for a long time. It’s helping me shape my work for the future and I hope I have managed to support future work for those present too." Helen Rice, CEO, Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove (participant)

"I really enjoyed the presentations (particularly from Young Healthwatch colleagues), Q&A and workshop sessions. I learnt a lot and enjoyed meeting colleagues from across my home county!" Louise Ansari, Healthwatch England Chair (Keynote speaker)

“It was a privilege to have been asked to chair this Sussex-wide conference. I came away with a real sense of a new beginning for the delivery of health and social care. I was particularly struck by the pivotal role that Healthwatch will have in both scrutinising and supporting the design of services.” Geoffrey Bowden, Healthwatch Brighton and Hove Interim Chair (Conference Chair)

"The whole day was enjoyable and worthwhile. I found the talk given by Stephen Lightfoot especially realistic and interesting, particularly "we have to make better use of the money" and involve public dialogue around prevention being better than cure. Integrated services will give patients better experiences." Sylvia New, Healthwatch volunteer (participant)

"The Healthwatch Conference was a great opportunity to discuss how we can work together to improve the delivery of health and care services for the 1.7 million people who live in Sussex and the high level of engagement in the room was fantastic.  I look forward to continuing to work closely with our local Healthwatch organisations as critical friends and partners to help us deliver better health and care for all across Sussex.” Stephen Lightfoot, Chair, NHS Sussex, Keynote Speaker (Keynote speaker)

"It was useful to hear at an early stage a description of the new ICS commissioning system and how it would work. The desire to involve Healthwatch and the VCSE sector was also encouraging. I hope this new approach will lead to more transparency and greater prioritisation of local needs." Chris Jennings, Healthwatch Volunteer (participant)

"A useful and interesting day with good tabletop discussions." Debra Balfour, Head of Collaborative Working (West Sussex), NHS Sussex (Participant)

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