The experiences of children and young people when they visit health and care providers

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Northamptonshire wanted to capture the views of children in a way that was appropriate and engaging for the age group. The purpose of these visits was to find out how children felt the last time they used a service such as the GP, opticians, dentist or hospital. Throughout the spring and summer of 2017 Healthwatch Northamptonshire attended various events held by partners across the county to gain views from a diverse range of children, some of whom had special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) or were in foster care. The engagement involved 137 children using stickers, emojis and coloured pens to express how using healthcare services made them feel. Services included GP surgeries, dentists, hospitals, opticians and orthodontists. Key findings indicate that experiences are mixed, with many feeling anxious, worried or scared and parents and carers play a big part in making children feel more at ease. Three recommendations were made, which included suggestions to involve children more in the design of services and to provide more entertainment to alleviate boredom and anxiety for older children. It was also recommended that clear explanations should be given to prepare young people for treatment and to ensure their understanding of procedures. It was recommended that Nene and Corby CCG engage further with young people about services, with the support of Healthwatch Northamptonshire.

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General details

Report title 
The experiences of children and young people when they visit health and care providers
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Northamptonshire
Date of publication 
Friday, 1 December, 2017
Type of report 
Key themes 
Building and facilities
Consent to care and treatment
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Public involvement
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Engagement event
How was the information collected? 
Engagement Event
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 
Dentist (non-hospital)
GP practice
Optometry services
Secondary care services 
Acute services with overnight beds

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
1-15 years
Not known
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 
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? 

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.