Local Voice is the first user-led organisation to engage and support resident voice through a recognised evidence-based community insights data system.
The things that we do include:
From stakeholders and community partners.
You really are guiding us to provide better services of care.
The ‘What would you do?’ report has been talked about in numerous meetings and forums that I’ve been involved in. It’s really helped to bring the NHS Long Term Plan, to life and show what it could be in practice and how we could listen. I give that as an example to show how well respected the work of Local Voice is.
Local Voice patient experience data has been an incredibly valuable tool in helping practices understand how they can improve and where they need to focus their energy. The triangulated data sets provide a broad picture of patient experience and feedback, giving practices the most rounded view of how they are performing. The regularly updated and centralised repository of patient feedback has been used to help practices improve their processes and the CCG commission and deliver broader strategic programmes. I feel confident that this has led to a direct improvement in GP access for the residents of Tower Hamlets.
Local Voice had done a fantastic job of pulling together a comprehensive analysis of the issues which mattered to TH residents. There was a depth and breadth to this analysis which is not always the case in patient experience research which was very helpful. Insights from this work fed directly into the co-development of the Tower Hamlets Together Out of Hospital strategy.
Improving GP access is a challenging issue for general practices across the country, and certainly in Tower Hamlets where there is considerable variation in practice processes leading to significant variation in patient experience. Local Voice was well organised in its approach to the task of information gathering and then it produced highly informative reports. This type of exercise will inevitably invite criticism by patients whose experience is poor, and can lead to defensiveness and embarrassment amongst the practices, who are a small business community.
I was therefore particularly impressed by the way Local Voice handled the delivery of the outcomes of their work. Their reports were balanced and gave praise where it was due while ensuring that the areas of poor patient experience were clearly set out with practical recommendations on how to improve them. Healthwatch worked with us very closely to ensure the message handling was appropriate and sensitive, without diminishing the message itself and now have a programme of regular monitoring which has been accepted and is being used by practices to improve their service.
The insights from Local Voice reports influence what we do as partners and within the Health and Wellbeing Board.
One of them, which I thought was really great, was the question ‘how would you like to keep yourself physically active?’. And what came out, people in Tower Hamlets like to walk, they like to move, they don’t necessarily want to go to the gym unless you’re under 25 but they want to walk around the borough and they want to feel safe when they do. The council are setting up their physical activity strategy and that is a really important insight because if it’s all about everyday walking then what we should be doing is making people feel safe to be using our green spaces better and making it pleasant for them to walk.
We also learned that people want many healthcare services under one roof. That’s important for us because we work with the council to create new health services. We want to make sure there are places that go beyond just being a GP but carry out a number of services.
Local Voice have helped us with our research, public health, to write documents called joint strategic needs assessment that talk about what’s going on with specific health issue. Through the local Healthwatch they were running at the time, Local Voice have helped inform those research documents.
And also there have been practical impacts on services, for example Local Voice have done extensive research on drug and alcohol services and speaking to my colleagues they were saying how much they value the feedback from an independent organization.
The council commissioned sexual health services and Local Voice have been instrumental in getting us where we are. We have invested a lot of money and time improving the physical building of the sexual health services.
Local Voice data is crucial to the EQUP programme as it allows improvement in patient experience to be measured over time, across the care journey with reference to life course, demographics and equality groups. This is the only source of patient experience data we have immediate access and it enable the EQUIP philosophy of continually test and change to have patient improvement as a key aspect of testing. We are able to view trends and compare direct changes in satisfaction on specific areas of our work, and also build a qualitative section of our data wall highlighting user experience. This offers a crucial narrative to inform our wider quantitative feedback, and is without doubt one of the sources of data we most value and trust.
The data comes from a wide range of sources that are clearly identifiable and can be accessed directly by the team according to our needs. The data arrives “in the patient’s voice”, an exercise which saves the programme, and practices, considerable amounts of time and money.
Local Voice have worked collaboratively with a number QI projects leading to a direct impact on services. We are better able to evaluate our impact and our best areas of focus through the Healthwatch reports, which are an invaluable source of information for the team.
This is a good quality product that we would have to pay considerable more to access from an external provider and it would not have the unique input from the large number of volunteers who work to support the data collection and coding.
The reports that Raluca produces are incredibly incite full, well presented, easy to understand and have led to real impact in terms of improving GP access in Tower Hamlets. Raluca has the unique skill to be able to both drill down to key messages of relevance and interest, and display these in a way that is eye catching, and immediately comprehensible.
Our coproduction and Patient Leadership uses the Local Voice data as an evidence base to speak authoritatively from, and our engagement work would be insubstantial without the Healthwatch data.
In a nutshell, Local Voice produces high quality data (quantitative and qualitative), and insights which are presented in a format that is accessible, up to date and ready for secondary analysis. The Healthwatch dataset (and the team that develop it) are a huge asset and have helped bring the voice of citizens into the heart of EQUIP's work in primary care. The EQUIP team unanimously feels that Local Voice should be considered an exemplar for WEL and beyond.
Thank you for sharing your reports and recent surveys with us. They have been extremely useful in determining where we focus our quality assurance visits and as a means of intelligence for informing our CQRM agendas. As you are aware, patient and public feedback is a key element in supporting us to improve the quality of care patients receive in our hospitals.
I hope we can continue to work together and share our intelligence.
This is a valuable source of qualitative data and information – including meta data that can be used as quantitative data points. We have found it to be a very helpful resource to offer visibility of feedback from local people. (both themes and specific quotations).
It has helped support and help explain the findings we are seeing in our work, a well-tailored quote can help make our analysis more tangible. It was also useful to highlight themes emerging from complaints and feedback, which help us to target quantitative analysis (of activity and spend) using the patient-level linked data set.