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National Voices Project: Unlocking the digital front door

19th May 2021

Stevie Corbin-Clarke and Dr Mel Hughes from the BU Research Centre for Seldom Heard Voices have been collaborating with National Voices on a project which aimed to develop an understanding of practical ways to support people who might find it difficult to access virtual or remote health services and who might be affected by wider inequalities.

To find out even more about the project, download the report and explore other resources, visit the National Voices website here: https://www.nationalvoices.org.uk/publications/our-publications/unlocking-digital-front-door-keys-inclusive-healthcare

Covid-19 has meant changes in the way that people access services and accelerated a move to virtual and remote models of care – a digital “front door”. This has opened up may opportunities for  innovation to develop easier access, but has also thrown a spotlight on inequalities, barriers for people to access health and social care and a digital divide.

With the pandemic leading a move to NHS 111 First and digital first access to primary care, health and social care services must to adapt in order to be inclusive and responsive to people from all backgrounds and with a range of needs. Through our listening exercise we explored people’s experience of this rapid shift.

We hoped to explore what a more joined-up and person-centred experience of care looks like, how virtual services could meet the full range of clinical, emotional and practical needs of people at risk of exclusion and address the barriers to access and use confronting some groups. We wanted to address barriers to good care and improve health and wellbeing outcomes, particularly for those people who have high burdens of ill health and who are affected by inequality.

The report also explores how the move to remote service models impacted people and how the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise sector (VCSE) has led innovative ways to deliver healthcare and support people during the COVID 19 pandemic.

  • NCPP Bournemouth University
    Stevie Corbin-Clarke
    Research Assistant

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