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Healthwatch Isle of Wight win 2 national awards

Healthwatch Isle of Wight has been recognised for its work over the last 12 months helping to improve the experiences of local NHS patients and social care users. Nominated against tough competition from across England in the ‘Engagement in Service Improvement’ category, Healthwatch Isle of Wight came out top for their work improving the quality of care in local nursing homes and residential care.

After hearing reports from the public about poor standards of care in local care homes, the team spotted an opportunity to improve things. They spoke with the Care Quality Commission about what they’d seen during inspections and then spoke to care home staff, residents, and their families about their experiences. They found out about the pressures staff were facing and what they needed to provide a better service.

After sharing what they’d heard with the key local decision makers, a variety of steps have been taken to make things better. Thanks in part to Healthwatch Isle of Wight’s efforts, 69% of all care and nursing homes have now received a good rating by CQC, 30% require improvement and no homes are rated as inadequate.

Award judger Debbie Sorkin, National Director of Systems Leadership at The Leadership Centre, said: “Taking the concerns shared with them by local people, Healthwatch Isle of Wight’s work has seen the local council reinstate quality monitoring visits to local care homes (the Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group) set up an integrated quality surveillance group and established a registered care homes managers’ network. This has had a clear impact with CQC ratings across the island dramatically improving, and now other local Healthwatch looking to replicate the project elsewhere.”  

This work was also awarded the NICE Better Care Award sponsored by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. This special award celebrated the most outstanding example of where a local Healthwatch has been able to help improve local health or care services by using NICE advice or guidance. This was achieved for the way in which Healthwatch Isle of Wight used NICE guidance to demonstrate to those running residential homes why it was important to have clear plans in place for residents. They also helped local authorities understand the difference that improving the quality of care can make to people’s lives.

‘We were so proud to receive this amazing accolade which reflects the hard work put in by our talented volunteers and staff team. This piece of work began when people contacted us with their experiences of residential care services and this demonstrates the difference that people can make by sharing what happened to them. We would like to personally thank the residents, families and friends that contacted us, for their contribution to the improvement in the quality of care provided to local people’ – Joanna Smith, Healthwatch Isle of Wight Manager.

To read the report and the responses from the Isle of Wight Council and the Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group please visit http://www.healthwatchisleofwight.co.uk/reports-0 or telephone 01983 608608 to request a hard copy version.

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NEWPORT PO30 1SS
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