Summary of report content
Healthwatch Barnet asked local residents about their experiences of accessing health and social care services during Covid-19 pandemic. The survey was live from 5 April 2020 – 1 July 2020 and 68 people responded to it.
The majority of respondents said that their healthcare provision was affected by some kind of change(s) during the Covid-19 outbreak. Many reported negative impacts resulting from these changes. However, some respondents also told us about positive impacts including services being quieter and offering new more accessible ways to speak medical professionals. Good communication about changes in healthcare provision emerged as an important key theme both in terms of ensuring on-going accessibility of healthcare during lockdown but also in ensuring that certain groups did not face digital exclusion.
The Covid-19 lockdown had a significant impact on respondents’ mental wellbeing. Many people struggled to access mental health support during lockdown. They were concerned about the long-term impact of the Covid-19 on the provision of mental health services including risks of longer waiting lists and increased health inequalities in the borough.
Many Barnet residents experienced changes to the frequency or delivery of their care. Poor communication from care providers exacerbated stress and anxiety around changes in care.