Access to Health and Social Care in Barnet during COVID-19 Lockdown

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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.

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General details

Report title 
Access to Health and Social Care in Barnet during COVID-19 Lockdown
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Barnet
Date of publication 
Thursday, 26 November, 2020
Date evidence capture began 
Sunday, 5 April, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Wednesday, 1 July, 2020
Type of report 
Key themes 
Cleanliness hygiene and infection control
Communication between staff and patients
Health inequalities
Health protection
Information providing
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Quality of care
Service closure
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 
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 
Cancer services
Mental health services 
Community mental health team (CMHT)
Social care services 
Day care (social care services)
Nursing care home
Residential care home

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
All people 18 and over
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Not known
Does the information include staff's views? 
Does the information include other people'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? 
Not applicable
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.