If you have encountered difficulty using health services in Southwark, there are a number of support options available. This might include medical concerns and their treatment options as well as accessing timely and/or accurate information and dealing with health bureaucracy.
Since April 2013 Healthwatch has acted as an independent consumer champion created to gather and represent the views of the public. It plays a role at both national and local level to make sure that the views of the public and people who use health and social care services are heard.
Healthwatch functions and responsibilities are to:
- Act as an independent consumer champion, gathering and representing the views of the public.
- Establish relationships with local authorities, Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs)
- Speak to patient representative groups, the voluntary and community sector and service providers to ensure the health and social care services they design and commission meets the needs of its citizens
- Have a seat on the new Health and Wellbeing boards ensuring that the views and experiences of patients, carers and local people are heard.
There is a Healthwatch organisation covering every local authority area in England. They will take the experiences that people have of local care and use them to help shape local services. They will also provide information and support to local people.
By sharing your experiences and ideas with Healthwatch you can influence the way services are run.
You can find out more about Southwark Healthwatch on their website www.healthwatchsouthwark.co.uk.
You can find out more about Healthwatch England at: www.healthwatch.co.uk
Making a complaint
In addition, if you would like to make a formal complaint about any health service you have received go to our Comment or Complain about Southwark NHS services page which will explain how to do this.