We’re here for you: new guides make it easier to access health services in Crawley
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The ‘We’re here for you’ resources have been developed by the NHS in partnership with local communities in response to feedback about the barriers people sometimes experience in getting the care they need.
The resources are part of an initiative to improve health and health services for people in Crawley. The town is one of the most diverse places in West Sussex and the COVID-19 pandemic brought into focus the serious health inequalities experienced across the community. Working with local partners, NHS Sussex launched the Crawley Programme to improve health outcomes by ensuring that services better meet the specific needs of the local community, now and for the future.
The guides cover a wide range of topics including maternity, emotional wellbeing and GP, urgent and emergency care, along with useful information on interpreters, transport and getting help with healthcare costs. The guides are being provided online, in hard copy and in a range of languages.
In addition, tailored information been developed for specific Crawley communities that have been identified as experiencing particular barriers to good health and care. These include the homeless, armed forces veterans and refugees and asylum seekers.
The involvement of communities across Crawley has underpinned the development of the resources. The initial idea came from the findings of the ‘Let’s Talk Crawley’ conversations that involved listening to the views of hundreds of Crawley residents in the Autumn of 2022. This found that people were often unaware of the ways that could get the services and support they need.
To develop the resources, community leaders and representatives were asked to set out the information they wanted to see and how they wanted it presented. NHS Sussex worked with local partners, including local government and the voluntary and community sector, to bring the information together. The wording and design of the guides was then tested and further refined with local people.
Iyadh Daoud, Chair of Crawley Interfaith Network, is one of the dozens of community members involved in the development of the guides. He said: “These guides are comprehensive and easy to read. They will make it much easier for people from all our diverse communities in Crawley to find the NHS services they need. The way they have been developed has shown a genuine commitment from the NHS to not just listen to local people but to truly understand their needs and act upon them.”
Fouzia Harrington, NHS Sussex Programme Director (West Sussex Strategy), said: “There are some great health services in Crawley, but too often people experience barriers in getting the health care they need. These information guides are an important part of our work to make sure everyone in Crawley can experience the best health and receive the best care. I’d like to thank our partners and everyone in Crawley who has helped to create them.”
Access the ‘We’re here for you’ guides from the Crawley health access resources microsite. [link to https://www.sussex.ics.nhs.uk/health-access-crawley].