Healthwatch Brighton and Hove has been shortlisted for two national awards, recognising the watchdog’s team of volunteers and its response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The results of the national Healthwatch Network Awards are due to be announced during Healthwatch Week which starts tomorrow (Tuesday 9 November).
Five local Healthwatch groups have been shortlisted for an award for their response to covid-19 – one of the five categories for this year’s national awards.
The awards organisers said: “Healthwatch Brighton and Hove (was shortlisted) for making over 1,700 welfare calls to people after they left hospital, signposting them to community support for food, mental health services and other specialist support.”
And just three local groups are in the running for the volunteer team of the year, with the organisers saying: “Healthwatch Brighton and Hove volunteers (were shortlisted) for helping to improve people’s experience of leaving hospital.”
The local group said: “Our nominated projects have helped over 1,700 people, helped improve hospital discharge processes, signposted people to community support and aided our local NHS trust’s hospital discharge team and local authority during lockdown.
“They also demonstrate our close collaboration with other partners across the network.
“This annual event celebrates the difference Healthwatch’s 4,000 plus staff and volunteers across England have made over the past year.
“Healthwatch Brighton and Hove is one of only 30 local Healthwatch teams out of a total of 152 across England to be in the running for one of the awards.
“We are one of just a handful of Healthwatch teams to have been nominated in two separate categories.”
Healthwatch Brighton and Hove chief executive David Liley said: “Over the last year, we reached out to – and supported – more people than ever before.
“None of this could have been done without our dedicated staffing team and amazing and very experienced volunteers and I am extremely proud of them for all that they have helped our organisation to achieve.”
Healthwatch Brighton and Hove chair Fran McCabe said: “It is a real tribute to the staff and volunteers in Healthwatch Brighton and Hove that we have been nominated by Healthwatch England for not just one but two awards.”
Healthwatch England chair Sir Robert Francis said: “This year once again the standard of entries for the Healthwatch Week awards was extremely high.
“Your local Healthwatch has been shortlisted because of excellent work which has really benefited your community.
“I am extremely proud of the inspiring dedication shown by our staff and volunteers to making a real difference for your community, whether that be by reaching out to those whose views are not being heard, helping people find the support they need or making sure NHS and social care services act on the improvements that you want to see.”
Healthwatch Brighton and Hove added that it was looking for new directors, including someone to chair the board and a finance expert.
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