COVID-19 in Three Communities: investigating the effectiveness of information for Chinese, Deaf and South Asian Communities

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Manchester investigated the effectiveness of safety information given about the COVID-19 pandemic. People from disadvantaged communities often face pronounced health inequalities, particularly around accessing the information they need.

Members of the Healthwatch Manchester trustee board directed the investigation toward the South Asian, Deaf and Chinese communities as priority areas for investigation.

A questionnaire survey was developed, the aim of which was to uncover the reasons behind people’s lack of access to the information they required around COVID-19 and safety from infection.

Key Findings:

  • A majority of those for whom English is a second language reported that they did not feel well informed about COVID-19, compared to people with a disability and the general public.
  • People’s main concerns about the pandemic were about the impact on their general health and wellbeing, as well as reduced access to healthcare services.
  • Information from the local NHS or local authority was rated highly in general. However, for disadvantaged communities this rating varies, and often has a lower rating of its accessibility and usefulness.

Four recommendations were made in this report:

1. Further consideration of accessibility is required by local providers of services when producing information and guidance for Manchester residents in those communities where English is not the first language.

2. The role of local voluntary and cultural-specific organisations in providing useful and accessible information through the correct methods to the communities they support should be acknowledged and gain investment by all key health and social care partners.

3. The role of pharmacy as a key point of contact and service uptake should be acknowledged and resourced as a provider and outlet of accessible information to disadvantaged communities.

4. Healthwatch Manchester needs to continue to invest in more accessible engagement methods in order to reach people from disadvantaged and marginalised communities.

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General details

Report title 
COVID-19 in Three Communities: investigating the effectiveness of information for Chinese, Deaf and South Asian Communities
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Manchester
Date of publication 
Wednesday, 2 December, 2020
Date evidence capture began 
Wednesday, 1 July, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Wednesday, 30 September, 2020
Type of report 
Key themes 
Health inequalities
Health promotion
Information providing
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
What type of organisation requested the work 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
GP practice

Details of people who shared their views

Age group 
Mixed / multiple ethnic groups
Specific ethnicity if known 
Any other Asian background
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? 

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.