15 steps Online review

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Summary of report content

Young Healthwatch volunteers at Healthwatch Central Bedfordshire decided to undertake a review of health and social care websites using the 15 steps programme methodology.  They wanted to assess the accessibility of each website for the user; the navigability of the website and find particular information.  They also wanted to find out if the website contained useful advice and information and was well laid out and appealing to all.

They felt that all the websites offering support to young people experiencing mental health issues gave a welcoming experience and were well organised. More importantly they all appeared to be ‘safe’ websites for young people to use. Most websites reviewed appeared to cater well for the cohort of people likely to use them.

They felt that most of the GP and hospital websites they looked at were professional and well laid out with explicit categories and points of information making accessibility easier and less overwhelming for people of all ages. However, there were no welcoming pages or images making visitors feel more comfortable when visiting the site, and as each website was viewed from a young person’s perspective, they realised that there was not a section specifically aimed at young people or an area of the website created solely for that purpose. This could mean that the younger generation may be more hesitant when visiting the website or going to the doctors as it could be less welcoming or comforting.

In contrast, the Covid-19 information was placed very successfully in that it did not alarm people yet did inform them sufficiently about what to do in order to reduce rising cases of Covid-19.

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General details

Report title 
15 steps Online review
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Central Bedfordshire
Date of publication 
Monday, 7 June, 2021
Date evidence capture began 
Wednesday, 1 July, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Thursday, 31 December, 2020
Key themes 
Information providing

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
GP practice
Secondary care services 
Inpatient care
Mental health services 
Child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS)

Details about conditions and diseases

What type of pregnancy or maternity themes are included in the report 

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Not applicable
Age group 
Not known
Not known
Not known
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
Not known

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.