Work Plan

Priorities for 2021/21:

Digital Exclusion 

The pandemic has forced a number of changes in our lives, including how we access health and social care services and how services engage with the public. This has created a divide between those who are able to use digital technology and want to, and those who do not have the ability, the knowledge or the want to use digital technology. 

This project aims to:

  • Identify the percentage of the public that doesn’t want to use technology for health and social care purposes 
  • Identify the percentage of the public that does not know how to use technology 
  • Identify the barriers that are stopping the public from wanting to use technology 
  • Identify barriers within the services that are not working together around technology


Mental Health

Throughout the pandemic, Mental Health has been one of the main areas that we have been contacted about by people who have not been able to access support for a number of reasons. In February we held a number of focus groups and a survey to find out what the public felt our priorities should be, Mental Health was at the top of that list. 

This priority will run alongside another Mental Health priority which is outlined below. 

The aims of this priority are:

  • Identify the impact of COVID on those who have mental health and newly diagnosed
  • Identify gaps in services 
  • Identify alternative support whilst waiting for treatment 
  • Identify support that will be required for individuals when things resume to normal


Young Peoples Mental Health

Young people have told us how important Mental Health is as an area to work on as well as the challenges they have faced during the pandemic. We also know that the Mental Health of many young people has been exacerbated because of the restrictions including lack of social contact and having to step into carer roles. 

Together, Healthwatch Wolverhampton, Walsall, Sandwell and Dudley will work collaboratively on this priority area along with Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust which provides mental health services across the Black Country. 

The aim of this priority is to:

  • Identify the impact of COVID on Young People
  • Identify gaps in services
  • Identify alternative support whilst waiting for treatment
  • Identify support that young people require when transitioning from young services to adult services


Communication With Multi-Disciplinary Professionals And Young People 

During the pandemic, we were successful in starting our Youth Healthwatch, a group of young volunteers who will help represent the views of young people in health and social care. Youth Healthwatch agreed their own priority which was to look at how services are communicating to young people and the manner in which it happens. When listening to their experiences it was clear that this project needed a wider remit than health and social care, and that it needed to include education. 

The aims of this priority are:

  • Identify the impact on young people where communication has not taken place 
  • Identify gaps in services
  • Identify alternative ways that young people want to be communicated with services
  • Identify support that will be required for young people

Details of how you can get involved will be shared on our website and social media as opportunities to get involved become available and the final reports will also be uploaded to the website and shared with services and commissioners. 


Register Your Interest for 2022/23

If you would like to be kept informed about how you can get involved in these priorities, or would like to register your interest in taking part, please use the form below:

Have your say on our priorities

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