Worcester News Article – 13th July

On Thursday 30 June for the first time since Covid Healthwatch Worcestershire held its Annual Conference at the Sixways Stadium, Worcester.  The conference was well attended by members of the public, patients, service users and carers, many of whom were representing those voluntary and community organisations that are members of our Reference & Engagement Group and it was my great pleasure to welcome them all. We started the day by presenting Healthwatch Worcestershire’s Annual Report for 2021/2022 which is available on our website but is also available in print from our office, which is so important to me as Healthwatch Worcestershire’s champion for ensuring that the current digital innovation in health and care services does not leave behind those who do not have access to the internet.

Having listened to the Director of Communications and Engagement speak about the approach the new NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire ICB will take to the future involvement of patients and the public in planning services, after lunch the audience had the opportunity to quiz a panel of some of the most senior leaders of Worcestershire’s health and care services in a ‘Question Time’ session that was independently chaired. On a range of issues, the panellists provided answers with some straight talking from both the audience and panellists at times.  We closed the meeting with a video of a member organisation of our Reference & Engagement Group which emphasised that our work is all about hearing the voice of those who use our health and care services and making a difference for them. Finally, it was so lovely to have the opportunity to re-new and make new acquaintances in person.

We are already planning for next years Annual Conference and will promote the date to members of our Reference & Engagement Group as soon as it is available. If you are a member of a community group that would like to be involved in our work or just know more about what we do, or you want a printed copy of our Annual Report or want to share an experience of health and care services with us in confidence please contact our office on 01386 550264, or alternatively email us at info@healthwatchworcestershire.co.uk .