Patient Bed Roadshow Goes Down a Storm

Last week hundreds of people engaged with Healthwatch Essex as they jumped on our patient bed to tell their stories.

The bed travelled around five locations in each part of the county – Chelmsford, Colchester, Brentwood, Southend and Harlow.

In each location we heard interesting stories which shed light on patient experiences and the issues that matter most to people.

Emma Wiles told us about the excellent care she received at Broomfield Hospital after her baby daughter died there earlier this year.

Emma with Specialist Midwife, Tabitha, said that she owed Tabitha a huge thank you for her support during a very difficult time.

In Harlow, we heard from a lady who had discovered thousands of pounds of unused medication that someone she knew had in their home. She expressed concern about the amount of wastage when people don’t review their repeat prescriptions.

83-year-old Pam, from Colchester, said that her GP’s surgery was outstanding; “They are the best in the world. I have been a patient at the surgery for 40 years and although my children want me to move to be closer to them, I don’t want to because it would mean having to register at a different surgery.”

But she also raised the issue of carer support as something she is concerned about: “Unpaid carers should be paid – or at least better-considered. My son is an unpaid carer for me, two days a week. I also think paid carers should get a better salary so that the job appeals to high quality candidates”

Across each of the locations we attended, trends emerged about what mattered most to people.  Across all locations, access to and provision for mental health support appeared as a key concern, as well as access to GP services when people needed them.

The feedback will now be collated and use to inform Healthwatch Essex’ activity through the year.