Healthwatch, and more specifically our local Healthwatch Waltham Forest, is an important resource for anyone who uses health and/or social care services, or is a carer, friend or family member of someone who does.
Relatively new (set up in April 2013), its purpose is to serve as a health and social care watchdog, supporting patients and their friends, family members and carers as they navigate local health and social care services.
The aim of Healthwatch Waltham Forest is to give children, young people and adults a powerful voice to influence how health and social care services are provided in Waltham Forest. They signpost people to local health and social care services, collect and analyse the views and experience of people who use local health and social care services, and use this information to help shape local services.
They also have a seat on the local Health and Wellbeing Board and are authorised by the Health and Social Care Act 2012 to ‘enter and view’ health and social care services to observe the nature and quality of services at the point of delivery. In carrying out their duties and working with their communities and partners they hope to encourage health and social care providers to hear directly from people themselves and improve patient engagement and involvement mechanisms across the borough.
Healthwatch believes that everyone has the right to safe, dignified and high quality health and social care services:
the right to essential services
the right to access
the right to a safe, dignified and quality service
the right to information and education
the right to choose
the right to be listened to
the right to be involved
the right to live in a healthy environment
Talk to Healthwatch
If you have views or concerns about any aspect of health and social care, talking to your local Healthwatch will help make sure your voice is heard and counts. Health and social care providers must listen to Healtwatch because it was set up as part of the Health & Social Care Act of 2012. Additionally, if they can’t help you they will know someone who can. Services you can talk to them about include:
Mental Health Services
More Information about Healthwatch/Local Health Services
Healthwatch sends out a monthly bulletin that includes health and social care news, details of events and opportunities to give input on local health and social care services, and training opportunities. Click here to sign up for the Healthwatch bulletin.
If you would like more information or would like to arrange to have someone come and speak to your organisation/group about Healthwatch Waltham Forest please contact Jaime Walsh on 020 3078 9990 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Not in Waltham Forest?
There are local Healthwatches all over England – to find one for where you live go to www.HealthwatchEngland.co.uk.