Blue Badge Report Summary of Evidence, Devon

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Summary of report content

In November 2016 Healthwatch Devon conducted an independent inquiry into assessments for a Blue Badge in Devon. This report contains 13 experiences that have been shared with Healthwatch Devon by Healthwatch Champions who are based in Citizens Advice Centres across the County. Individuals had contacted Citizens Advice because they were worried about the outcome of a recent Blue Badge assessment. Assessments had resulted in them not being eligible for a Blue Badge award, even though in some cases they had been eligible before. Similar concerns had also been received by Devon County Council, which were: 1. Applicant disagrees with information contained in the assessment 2. Applicant who was recently eligible for a Blue Badge, assessed as no longer eligible 3. Attitude of the assessor Key findings Based on the experiences presented within this report the main issues were found to be: An inconsistency in the quality of blue badge assessments. • Concerns regarding how the assessment criteria is applied and its consistency with the national guidelines. • A lack of privacy, resulting in the process being uncomfortable and intimidating. • Staff attitudes; a lack of dignity and respect. Individuals did not feel that their voice had been heard or that their needs been fully considered. • The negative impact that being refused a Blue Badge can have on an individual’s health and wellbeing. Recommendations 1. That Devon County Council and Devon Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee review this report alongside any other the evidence Devon County Council holds in relation to people’s experiences of the Blue Badge assessment service. 2. That Devon County Council considers carrying out a review of the blue badge assessment process to identify what steps can be taken to improve the quality of the service for applicants.

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General details

Report title 
Blue Badge Report Summary of Evidence, Devon
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Devon
Date of publication 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2016
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 3 March, 2016
Date evidence capture finished 
Tuesday, 13 September, 2016
Type of report 
Key themes 
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
User stories
How was the information collected? 
Not known

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
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? 
Not applicable
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
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? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Not applicable

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.