Healthwatch Wolverhampton is in line to win a prize in a national initiative.

The Network awards are designed to recognise the ways in which Healthwatch organisations across the UK have helped make residents’ views heard on health and social care.

More than 150 entries were made to this year’s competition and Healthwatch Wolverhampton has been shortlisted for Championing diversity and inclusion award category.

As part of our ongoing work with Deaf and hearing-impaired individuals, we have worked with Zebra Access, commissioners and providers to understand the issues this community have around various health areas.

Healthwatch brought together the Clinical Commissioning Group, local council, urgent care providers and NHS trust to create a plan of action and hold an event to share with the community the changes being made as a result of their feedback.

The changes included:

  • The development of a card people can show when visiting health and care services to highlight their need for additional help communicating, to help reduce anxiety over booking an appointment and asking for an interpreter.
  • Several facilitated health forums to enable Deaf people to become more aware of health issues, such as dementia, mental health, cancer and diabetes.
  • Discussions on how interpreter services are commissioned across Wolverhampton to help improve consistency and quality.

As a result, the Deaf community felt their views had not only been shared, but that they were being taken seriously and acted upon to help improve care for themselves and others.

Every year, the awards celebrate positive stories of how local Healthwatch are helping to make care better for thousands of people. The Healthwatch Network Awards are an opportunity to demonstrate where local Healthwatch have gone above and beyond, to make sure health and social care services meet everybody’s needs.

Healthwatch across the country listen to what people like about the NHS and social care and what could be changed. They share these views with professionals, so that services can understand what people and their families want from care.

These awards recognise the importance of how people’s feedback is vital. Thanks to the 406,000 people who shared their experiences with Healthwatch last year, positive changes have been made to how local health and care services are run.

The local Healthwatch shortlisted for 2019 Healthwatch Network Awards were picked from almost 150 award entries.

The winner from each category will be chosen by a panel of external judges and announced at the Healthwatch England Annual Conference on 1 October 2019.

Award categories

Championing diversity and inclusion

This award recognises how Healthwatch have made a difference to the experience of diverse communities using health and social care services.

  • Healthwatch Bexley
  • Healthwatch East Sussex
  • Healthwatch Kent
  • Healthwatch Lincolnshire
  • Healthwatch Wolverhampton

Tracy Cresswell, Wolverhampton Healthwatch Manager said “We are really pleased to be shortlisted for this award as we have worked hard over the last 18 months with stakeholders to ensure that the voices of the deaf and hearing-impaired community are being heard and acted on in Wolverhampton.   

I would like to thank everyone who have been involved in this piece of work, it has been a joint effort with all involved.

Healthwatch is supported by volunteers, if you are interested in volunteering or having your say on Health and Social Care Services in Wolverhampton contact the office on 0800 4701944 and a member of the team will support you”.

Jacob Lant, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at Healthwatch said, “The Healthwatch Network Awards are a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the difference local Healthwatch have made across the country.

“This year we received some outstanding entries from the network, which has made the shortlisting even more challenging. We have been very impressed by the quality and incredible range of work on show. 

“These entries highlight the real impact we can have when people come forward and tell us about their experiences. Healthwatch can only make a difference when people speak up and help services understand what is working and what is not.”


For more information about the awards and the others that have been shortlisted click here.