Community Equipment Service questionnaire summary, Devon

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Devon undertook a postal survey of current and previous users of the Community Equipment Service, at the request of Devon County Council, to gather views to help shape the service when it was recommissioned. This report is a summary of the responses received. The Community Equipment Service (CES) in Devon is jointly funded by Devon County Council and the NHS and is, at the time of this report, provided by PLUSS, a social enterprise owned by Devon County Council, Plymouth City Council, Somerset County Council and Torbay Council. The Devon CES covers the Devon County Council footprint including North, East, West and South Devon, excluding the Plymouth and Torquay local authority areas. Although the questionnaire was targeted at members of the public responses were also received from Health Sector Workers and Support Organisations. The Health and Social Care workers expressed the same frustrations with the service as the people in receipt of the service; poor communication, heard to get in contact with, incorrect equipment or delayed delivery with no explanation or apology. One concern raised by both staff and service users was the waste when a particular piece of equipment was no longer required: "The problem with the small equipment (eg commodes, Mowbray frames, walking frames, shower stools, raisers, etc.) is that they are ordered on prescription from a local supplier and then when no longer required by the client are told to throw them on the rubbish tip. To disband the idea of writing prescriptions and throwing the equipment away. The reason given was that it was more expensive to clean and sterilise the equipment. This is not credible to the public."

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General details

Report title 
Community Equipment Service questionnaire summary, Devon
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Devon
Date of publication 
Sunday, 1 December, 2013
Date evidence capture began 
Friday, 23 August, 2013
Date evidence capture finished 
Friday, 6 September, 2013
Type of report 
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Cost of services
Digitalisation of services
Health and safety
Health promotion
Health protection
Holistic support
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Waiting times and lists for treatment
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
What type of organisation requested the work 
Local Council
If this work has been done in partnership, who is the partner? 
Devon Senior Voice, CAB Devon, Living Options, Devon Link-up, Devon People First, Be Involved Devon and Carers Voice, and Hikmat.
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

Social care services 
Assisted living
Community services 
Continuing care
Other services 
Equipment service

Details about conditions and diseases

Types of disabilities 
Not known
Types of long term conditions 
Not known
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 
Age group 
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? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
Allied health care professionals
Care / support workers
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? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
Not known
What type of impact was determined? 
Implied Impact

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.