"Feedback from service user forum: the 5 things we think the Healthy Living Service could do differently to better support people."
About: Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust / Healthy living service Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust Healthy living service LS15 8ZB
Posted by AmyJayne (as ),
We met as a group of current and previous service users of the Healthy Living Service on 24th April. We met to share our feedback about the service, to discuss what we feel the service does really well and how we think the service could better support people.
Below are the 5 things we think the Healthy Living Service could do differently to better support people:
1. "I'd like to be able to support others in the same situation"
We feel the Healthy Living Service could do more to put people in touch with each other, enable peer mentoring or just supportive sessions where current service users who are further along the line could offer their advice and example.
2. "I wanted to carry on, but I was discharged and it felt like the support just dropped away"
I was really started to achieve, and then when I was discharged from the service the support just dropped away and I found it very hard to stay motivated. I didn't want to go backwards, I wanted to be able to keep going. I would really like to see better arrangements for continued support, or after care. I understand that the service can only support so many people but I think many people will revert to their old behaviour if the service only supports people in the beginning. It would also be nice for the staff to see the results you achieve later down the line, they have put so much hard work into you, I'm sure they'd like to see you achieve your goals.
3. "I was promised opportunities would be offered to me as I finished, but they weren't"
Along the same lines of the above, I was promised a plan which helped to 'ween' me off the service and into mainstream exercising but that didn't really happen. That left me all of a sudden feeling like I didn't know what I was going to do.
4. "When an inpatient, I felt trapped"
A few members of the group shared that when they were an inpatient at the Becklin Centre, they felt trapped. They were not well enough (other health issues) to take part in the more active exercise, but would have loved to be able to go for a walk with someone, even just on or around the grounds. There didn't seem to be much flexibility about how to stay active, unless you could take part in the planned group activities.
5. "I didn't feel like the staff really got to know me, and what I needed"
Though most people were pleased with the time the staff had spent getting to know them and what they wanted to achieve, one person felt that this wasn't the case for them. They felt that the staff had not really understood what they wanted to achieve and had made assumptions about weight etc, though this was not this person's goal. They felt that this was vital in making someone feel good.
One service user shared that because their family lived at quite a distance, they were not made aware of them having been admitted to the Becklin, and information about the subsequent support from all the different services (including the HLS) were not shared with the family - though the service user would have been happy for this to happen.
Generally, the service user group felt very positively towards the Healthy Living Service (and the staff involved), but would love to see some of the above points taken into account.