Health Inclusion Matters is trying to understand better the difference it makes to the lives of those who use our services. We want to ensure that we are achieving outcomes that are relevant and meet the needs of our patients and the commissioners who pay for our services. It is also important that we find a way of measuring this so we can share our story of change to others. This will also help us to retain and win new work and grow our business to help more people.
To help us do this we have been successful in being one of a small group of social enterprises that has been awarded a grant from the Cabinet Office's Impact Readiness Fund. We have started a small project to begin to identify the outcomes we are achieving, the way we are doing this and how we can create a simple measurement system.
One of the things that is very important to us in understanding the difference we can make to people’s lives is by listening to what our patients tell us about what sorts of services they need and the outcomes that they want us to help them to achieve.
As part of our impact project we gave out short questionnaires to patients visiting the surgery in a two week period in May and again in July. The 2 questionnaires asked patients for their views on our services and the sorts of impact it had on their health and the difficulties many of them face in their lives.
Around fifty of our patients took the time to respond to one or both of our surveys. Thank you very much!
We will be repeating our patient survey each year but also finding other ways to ensure that patients ‘have their say’, that we listen and that we take on board your suggestions to improve our services.
What you told us
Patients were very clear about the ways in which Health Inclusion Matters helped them to improve both the state of their health but also other aspects of their life, including which, for some, were very complex and difficult.
86% told us that if our service was unavailable it would have an impact on their health needs and for nearly 2out of 3 of these people the impact would be serious.
It would make a massive impact on my life. All bad’
‘A great impact as the doctors know and understand my needs’
‘Awful. No one else wants to know’
‘Terrible, because a few times in the past I’ve moved and changed doctors and no one has given me the attention and care that I’ve got here’
‘I truly believe my recovery would be at risk’
Patients also told us that since being a patient with us that other areas of their life had improved too and this included
· feeling better about themselves and their sense of self-worth
· having a better sense of being in control of their life
· behaving with more respect towards others
· engaging with other local services
Patients were very positive about the services that they received and wanted to praise our staff and doctors for not only the quality of the care but for their friendliness, being prepared to listen and recognising them as individuals.
This is encouraging for us but we want to make certain we can do even more and to make the biggest difference possible to the health and lives of our patients by ensuring that they have easy access to the health care and the other services that they need.
Whilst some patients reported that their housing needs had improved, for many finding safe, appropriate and long-term accommodation was still a huge problem. We recognise this and will continue to do all that we can to help our patients engage with housing providers and to be an advocate for their needs.
A few patients described ways that our services could be improved. This is very helpful to us and we will be looking carefully at the suggestions made. The common frustration expressed was about waiting times but other things were mentioned like the absence of a water machine and ideas about appointments booking and text messaging.
What some of our other stakeholder told us
We also asked some of the organisations that we work closely with about our services, our relationship and communication with them, what they think we help our patients to achieve and how we can improve. This included representatives from NHS and Local Authority commissioners, GPs and voluntary sector organisations.
All of the responses that we received were extremely positive and these stakeholders - like our patients - described the value of our services in more than just meeting health needs but also about being able to support our patients in tackling some of the difficulties in other areas of their personal and social lives.
They valued our commitment to working in partnership with other services and agencies in support of our patients’ needs and want us to find ways with them to do more of this. We will look forward to sharing our ideas with them over the coming months.
We are very pleased to be working on this project with Local Partnerships. Local Partnerships has been supporting Health inclusion Matters in its journey over the last few years and are bringing their expertise and knowledge of social enterprise to help us with our impact project
We will posting more details of our impact project in due course and will launch our first impact report in 2016!
August 3rd 2015