In South West London and Surrey Downs, when restrictions on social contact came into place, the local CCGs were already 10 weeks into a 12 week consultation, Improving Healthcare Together (IHT), and most of their face to face engagement activities had taken place.
They had one scheduled listening event and one deliberative event left and they emphasise that these were just two out of 15 different ways for stakeholders to share their views.
For the listening event:
- they notified their stakeholders of its cancellation via social media and uploading messaging onto the IHT website
- they emailed all stakeholders on their IHT database. (As a result, none turned up to the venue on the evening of the listening event)
- they planned to pre-record the IHT listening event presentation and upload it onto their website (two members of the panel due to social distancing considerations)
- they gave local people the opportunity to raise questions via the IHT inbox which they answered in writing.
They explored the idea of live streaming the meeting, however this was really difficult due to social distancing and getting all the panel members in the room. Clinicians are also currently and understandably re-prioritising their clinical work.
For the deliberative event, run by delivery partner You Gov:
- The planned four hour deliberative meeting was divided into four separate focus groups (with the same representatives); these focus groups were delivered virtually by You Gov
- YouGov conducted the research with these participants online. The 40 participants that had been recruited were separated into four focus groups of ten each, and YouGov conducted ‘chat-based’ online discussions with them
- In this way, the engagement still took place, and, though the participants did not have as much time to digest the information as they would have in a face to face setting, they were still able to give their considered thoughts and opinions.
Many thanks to Charlotte Keeble and the team at Improving Healthcare Together for this useful practical information.
Sue Cavill email@example.com