Local people are embracing the opportunity to have their say on health and social care issues anonymously through a pilot online system operated by Healthwatch Derbyshire.


Healthwatch Derbyshire is the independent organisation representing the views of the Derbyshire public on health and social care services.


Since the launch of the organisation’s online feedback system last October, more than 500 local people have reported their experiences – good and bad – and flagged up issues when accessing health and social care services in the county.


Of those, 42 comments have been shared anonymously on the organisation’s website.


Healthwatch Derbyshire CEO Karen Ritchie explained that the online feedback system addressed some people’s reluctance to go directly to a provider with concerns.


She said: “Health and social care providers have their own complaints departments where people can get in touch with them directly with concerns or complaints.


“We however find that there is often a reluctance to do this directly – particularly if the issue is around on-going care.


“Our feedback system enables people to report issues anonymously.  We are then able to raise concerns on their behalf and to act as the mediator to resolve the situation.


“Having piloted the system for six months, we are delighted with the response from the public and the progress made in resolving issues.”


Mrs Ritchie continued that the majority of comments made via the website were about hospital care and GP services.


“It was heartening that many of the comments were about positive experiences but there have been issues highlighted in terms of quality of treatment, staff attitudes, waiting times, difficulties in accessing services and issues with dignity and respect.


“Our role is to raise these concerns with the providers and commissioners of health and social care services so that improvements can be made both to the individual concerned and for the wider public.”


The Healthwatch feedback system can be found at https://www.healthwatchderbyshire.co.uk/rate-a-service/ 

© Healthwatch Derbyshire 2021

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