Essex SWEET! report

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Summary of report content

Following the publication of the YEAH! Report1 (‘Young Essex Attitudes on Health and Social Care,’ Healthwatch Essex, 2015) which engaged with hundreds of young people across the county, Healthwatch Essex went on to capture the lived experience of hard-to-reach young people living in areas of recognised deprivation. In the spring and summer of 2015, Healthwatch Essex worked with Achievement Through Football (ATF), a charity engaging with young people at risk of exclusion from education, based in the Southend and Shoeburyness areas. 203 young people (aged 11-25) were engaged with from seldom-heard groups such as Eastern European/migrant communities, gypsy, traveller and Roma communities, young ex-offenders, and young people living in social housing and/or foster care. We know that these young people are rarely represented through usual engagement platforms (e.g. listening events, youth councils and mainstream youth schemes), but have valuable lived experience that needs to be heard. For example, the ‘Public Perceptions of the NHS and Social Care’ report (2015), found that relatively high proportions of the population said they did not know about social care topics.2 Yet by contrast, our sample of young people had a wealth of social care experience. This report, therefore, provides a nuanced snapshot of deprivation and marginalisation in Essex that sheds a light on social determinants of health,3 showing the relationship between health and the environment in which these young people live, including an emotional and psychological insight to the young people’s lives. The lived experience of these young people can shape our understanding of why health and social care outcomes might work better for other sections of the population. Engaging with these groups has ensured stronger representation for young people living in areas of deprivation, and their health and social care needs. Designed by Healthwatch Essex and facilitated by Achievement Through Football (ATF), the SWEET! Report collates this lived experience in a way we hope can influence decision making in health and social care that keeps young people in mind. The findings inform Healthwatch Essex engaged with SWEET! participants on a broad range of health and social care topics, which highlighted a wealth of lived experience in each particular area of our study. However, certain themes and issues recurred across the spectrum of health and social care which included the importance of being heard, wanting support in challenging times, the need for flexible care, receiving early and effective education, having a sense of self-worth and having a goal.

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General details

Report title 
Essex SWEET! report
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Essex
Date of publication 
Tuesday, 1 March, 2016
Date evidence capture began 
Tuesday, 1 March, 2016
Date evidence capture finished 
Tuesday, 1 March, 2016
Type of report 
Key themes 
Health inequalities
Health promotion
Health protection
Holistic support
Information providing
Integration of services
Public involvement
Quality of care
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 
Focus group
User stories
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
Urgent care services
Secondary care services 
Sexual health
Accident & emergency
Mental health services 
Child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS)

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
All people under the age of 18
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? 
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? 
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.