Agenda item


A representative from Bury Healthwatch to provide an update.



Anne Marie from Healthwatch reported on the project looking at access to GP services for people with sensory loss and physical disabilities. A small-scale mystery shop, interviews and focus groups had taken place so far, and visits to services will follow shortly. They would invite any interest in participation to get in touch, as well as sharing any experiences Members may have received concerning this subject.


Brought to their attention were issues surrounding access to GPs at weekends for families of people that have passed away. Problems with accessing services can delay burial, and in Muslim and Jewish faiths it is essential to bury someone as fast as is possible, with delays causing further suffering. They are looking to gather information and experiences to inform actions and would again welcome any input members of the committee may have on this.


The enter and view programme was now underway with initial focus on care homes. They had undertaken a first visit and the report was due out shortly. The programme of future visits was being prepared, along with a plan to start looking at day care and extra care facilities in the borough.


There are two Healthwatch Bury reports included with the papers attached to the agenda packs and one recently published, is on Dementia diagnosis with the other on Pharmacy services. Any feedback from the committee was welcome.


The Chair invited any questions on the Bury pharmacy survey report and Councillor Rizvi welcomed the extra hours and how can the message be spread across GP surgeries.


Anne Marie reported that work was being done with health partners to get that message across to local people that pharmacies offer different services and had different opening times.


Councillor Harris commented on extended hours and the problem of locating a pharmacy that was open and a window poster promoting other night time services in the borough would let the public know.


Dr Cathy Finds added people with minor ailments should be signposted to a community pharmacy.


Councillor Tariq commented on 24-hour online pharmacy services and that data usage of these services could be gauged and inputted into the GM pharmaceutical body.


Councillor Walsh requested that under the demographics section of the report, could Radcliffe be added as a township area instead of being classed as ‘other’ in the data fields.


Will Blandamer referred to the Bury Pharmaceutical  Needs Assessment 2022-25 which was endorsed by the health and wellbeing board and the link to access this was included on page 45 of the agenda pack.


The Chair summed up discussions and better communications would provide where to obtain pharmacy information and moving forward this should be conducted in the same manner across the GM network area.


The Dementia Survey Report was also attached to the agenda packs and the Chair reminded Members of the committee that Healthwatch Bury had produced the report only and were a watchdog body and did not provide the specialised services.


Some Members enquired about the memory test being used as a diagnostic tool and how effective it was.


Will Blandamer commented that the resident and patient feedback would be listened to and included in the GM steering group. The Chair added this item may come back at some point in the next year.


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