Experiences of health and care in Trafford during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Trafford undertook research about local people’s experiences of accessing health and care services, as well as the wider impact of COVID-19 on their lives. They undertook a survey to which 246 people responded. They also undertook focus groups with 12 members of the public and 29 community group workers or professionals.

A significant number had tried to access services during the pandemic.  The main reason people gave for not accessing it was the feeling that it was unnecessary. GPs, hospital outpatients, and dentists were the most commented on services.

GPs’ use of telephone and video was welcomed as an effective way to continue services.  People were concerned that hospital outpatient services and dentists were closed.  They were unsure when they would reopen.

GP surgeries, television, social media, the internet, friends and family, and Trafford Council were the top ways of accessing information.  Clear communication was felt to be the most important way that information could be improved.

There were a variety of effects on mental health; while the majority felt it had become slightly worse there were a significant number that felt unaffected. The reasons for mental health changes were complex with a mix of changes to social life, work, confinement, shielding, and family being together all the time playing a part.

Some people had a positive experience during lockdown, but overall a lot of turmoil had been created, especially around family life and access to support services. Food access was also a significant concern for many at the early stages of the pandemic.

There were 5 recommendations about improving information, reaching people, service response and mental health.

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General details

Report title 
Experiences of health and care in Trafford during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Trafford
Date of publication 
Tuesday, 10 November, 2020
Date evidence capture began 
Monday, 16 November, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Wednesday, 30 September, 2020
Type of report 
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Digitalisation of services
Health inequalities
Holistic support
Information providing
Service closure
Other information of note about this report 
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Focus group
How was the information collected? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
Community pharmacy
Dentist (non-hospital)
GP practice
Secondary care services 
Mental health services 
Community mental health team (CMHT)
Community services 

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
16-17 years
18-24 years
25-64 years
65-85 years
Specific ethnicity if 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? 
Not known

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.