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Shaping the future of young people's care at NGH

Healthwatch news story visits

Volunteers from Young Healthwatch have been helping to shape the future of children’s and young people’s care at Northampton General Hospital.

Four volunteers, who give their time to help influence health services as part of Young Healthwatch Northamptonshire, visited the hospital in November to look at the facilities available for children in our county.

The group visited different children’s areas in the hospital and completed a 15 Steps assessment looking at what the hospital looks and feels like from a patient perspective. The 15 Steps Challenge is about capturing how departments and wards feel for patients based on their first impressions within 15 steps of walking into a hospital space.

Gabriella Van Beek, Healthwatch Manager said, “It is very exciting to be able to collaborate with Northampton General Hospital. The young volunteers enjoyed the opportunity to provide insight into the departments and bring impact to young people services.”

Chris Johnson, Head of Patient Experience and Engagement, at Northampton General Hospital said: “We were delighted to welcome the visit from the members of Young Healthwatch. Their observations and feedback help us to understand how we can improve our services from the perception of a young person.

“The visit covered the children’s wards, child development centre, clinics, play activity centre and children’s A&E which hopefully gave Young Healthwatch a good insight to services they may encounter at Northampton General Hospital.

“We look forward to reviewing the published report so that we can consider any recommendations provided and celebrate aspects that Young Healthwatch felt were positive.”

Esther Stimpson, Projects and Engagement Office, from Young Healthwatch said: “Every single staff member we encountered was amazing. The young people had a great day and really enjoyed it.”

The report was written by Young Healthwatch volunteers in their own words, allowing the young volunteers to express their opinions and then finalised by the Healthwatch North and West Northamptonshire staff. The report is based on what they observed and the people they spoke to. The full report can be accessed here.

As well as the visit from Young Healthwatch, Kate Pye, Deputy Director for Childrens and Young People’s Nursing for NHS England also visited the hospital in November to provide a national update, speak with patients and parents about their experience and tour the children’s and neonatal wards and the Play Activity Centre.

Kate said: “It was a great visit and I really enjoyed spending time with the whole senior team who were all so welcoming. The positive feel of the unit as we went round was clear. There was real happiness in the staff, busy, but lots of smiles and all were happy to talk to me.

“There was a feeling of really positive teamwork and lots of the staff with the children, mothers and their families and the celebration of a little neonate coming out of an incubator into a cot for the first time was an example of how committed and caring the staff were to make this a special event for the mother.”

Posted on Thursday 18th January 2024
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