We have been working with Public Health Torbay and a range of local community wellbeing groups to create a dedicated online COVID-19 information and advice service.
Hundreds of different local services and support links have been added to the Healthwatch Torbay website, the local independent health consumer champion service we are partners with. The new website section offers trusted links to National Guidance, Local Information, General Advice, Mental health services & support, Bereavement Services and even links for Parents, Carers, Children and Young People.
This regularly updated information tool can be found by CLICKING HERE.
Ordinarily, Healthwatch Torbay’s main priority is to collate community feedback about local health and care services, but the COVID-19 outbreak a few months ago has led to them adapting their public service, as our Chair Dr Kevin Dixon explains:
“As the COVID-19 situation was emerging, we set up a single webpage to provide up-to-date health information and advice in order to help protect the public, our staff, volunteers, service users, clients and visitors. But since then we have been inundated with visitors to the page and requests from local voluntary, community, and statutory partners requesting us to include their own COVID response offer on the Healthwatch website.
Due to public demand and the sheer volume of useful information, advice and guidance on offer, we have now transformed the COVID-19 section of our website to clearly exhibit the hundreds of support services and links available to people during the current lockdown. I’d very much like to thank Public Health Torbay and the local community wellbeing groups for working together with us to help collate most of the trusted information uploaded in our COVID-19 section.
We really hope Torbay residents can use it to get any help or support they require, and that healthcare professionals such as GPs can signpost people in need to this valuable resource.”
Engaging Communities South West staff and volunteers are also helping to staff the Torbay Community Coronavirus Helplines seven days a week, together with local organisations including the Torbay Community Development Trust, Brixham Does Care, Age UK Torbay, Healthwatch Torbay, Ageing Well Torbay, Citizens Advice Torbay, the Torbay Advice Network, Homemaker Southwest and What’s Your Problem, all working alongside Torbay Council and Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust.
There have been nearly 6000 calls to the community helplines – 01803 446022 and 01803 857727 – which aim to provide much-needed help for the Bay’s most vulnerable during lockdown such as food shopping, prescription deliveries and telephone befriending. For more information please visit www.torbayhelphub.com.