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Healthwatch Cumbria Activity Update – Sep 2015

Parkinson’s Service User Group

The Parkinson’s Service User Group from West Cumbria asked HWC to give a brief presentation to the group about the role of HWC and the work we do. The presentation and meeting provided an opportunity for group members to share their views and experiences of health and social care services.

The group are providing awareness raising sessions in residential homes to help staff understand the importance of the timing of administering medication to people living with Parkinson’s.  If you have any questions, or would like further information about the group please contact John Kane (Chairman) on 07867 983 989 or email

The Healthwatch team will be undergoing awareness raising training in the near future.
If you have any views/ experiences that you would like to share with HWC about Parkinson’s disease you can contact us on: or 01900 607208.

Primary Care Communities

Primary Care Communities (PCC) are those where services and communities work together to provide a sustainable model of care outside of hospital, where everyone can take ownership of their health.

HWC has previously taken part in PCC workshops in the West of the county set up by the Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). We have now been invited to work with our colleagues at the CCG on building PCC’s in both the South & North of the county. This work will roll out over the coming weeks, so watch this space!

Penrith Library Drop – In’s

We can now confirm that we will be at the Library in St. Andrews Churchyard Penrith on Thursday 24th September between10:30am – 12:30pm.

Why not come along to see us and share your views and experiences of health and social care services in Cumbria.

National Maternity Review

Healthwatch Cumbria (HWC) was invited to meet with the Chair and Vice Chair of the National Maternity Review Team, Baroness Julia Cumberlege and Sir Cyril Chantler, respectively. The Team was in Carlisle as part of its national tour to hear how women, their families and advocates, provider organisations and the professional bodies involved in maternity care feel about current services. The National Maternity Review is an independent review of maternity services in England which will assess current maternity care provision and consider how services should be developed to meet the changing needs of women and babies.

Sue Stevenson, HWC, attended to highlight the key messages included in a HWC briefing paper, attached, which had been provided as part of the Cumbria information pack supplied to the Chair and Vice Chair. The views expressed in the HWC paper have all been recorded in engagement sessions run by the HWC team. Sue was able to highlight the concerns and issues that local people have told us must be taken into account when considering how maternity services could be delivered in the future.

Access to health & social care services for the Deaf update:

HWC has now visited Deaf support groups around the county to gather experiences of accessing health services. Group members were assisted to complete surveys and to share their experiences of services in Cumbria. A GP specific survey has been sent to all GP practices in the county to help us understand what procedures are in place to support Deaf patients. We look forward to receiving the completed surveys and sharing best practice from local surgeries.

Diabetes Update:

Healthwatch Cumbria is working in partnership with the Cumbria Diabetes Service User Group (CDSUG) to develop our understanding of access to health checks for those living with diabetes.

We would like to hear from everyone living with diabetes. Please share your experience by completing a short 10 minute survey. You can access the survey here


HWC is delighted to have recruited 3 new Ambassador Volunteers to the team this month.

Our Ambassadors provide vital support in a number of different ways including specialist interest i.e. eye health and adult services, visits to health and social care services, taking part in engagement events or attending meetings on behalf of the HWC team.

We are constantly on the lookout for people who are passionate about health and social care and who have a little spare time to support the team and their local community.  We are looking to recruit more volunteer Ambassadors across Cumbria and particularly in the south of the county. If you feel that this would interest you then contact Sue Hannah our Senior Engagement Officer on 01900 607208 or