What we did:
A survey was developed to gather people’s experiences of managing their health and care during the coronavirus lockdown; what worked well for local people and what could have been improved, and what needs to be considered as the situation continues to change.
This was an online survey and was promoted widely through contacts and social media.
What we were told:
Some were happy with the information they received, some felt that they had the level of health and care they needed or as could be expected in the situation; for example, some liked using digital methods and some did not experience any particular problems.
Many found much needed support from families and their community. However, a significant number of participants shared experiences of difficulties and concerns, especially carers or people who cared for others.
Many people reported that the circumstances had an impact on their mental health. As many organisations closed their doors, people sought information from national or known sources but information was not always clear or easy to find.
Findings and recommendations:
Full findings and recommendations are included later in the report and include a need for:
- Clear information and advice, particularly about health and care support available (including mental health wellbeing). Locally relevant messages should be relevant and ‘sharable’ within the community.
- New or improved ways of accessing information and services.
- Development of support for carers and those disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.
What happens next:
We have already shared our findings with local decision makers as the survey responses had been completed. This included an emerging findings report presented to Wandsworth Health and Care Board. We will continue to refer to these findings in discussions with decision makers.
The findings have also shaped our own work following the Covid-19 pandemic, including a project about digital and telephone appointments, working with NHS mental health wellbeing services to design and test online wellbeing workshops and informing the programme for our first virtual public event.