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All views matter: Improving feedback mechanisms for non-English speaking patients

This project aims to increase feedback from non-English speaking patients attending sexual health clinics using digital and quality improvement methods, so that services can be improved for these groups.

Read comments 2
  • Proposal
  • 2022

Meet the team


  • Dr Tina Dwivedi
  • Dr Ashley Jeffries
  • Dr Heather Catt
  • Eleanor Walsh
  • Natalie Ennis
  • Kellie Mason
  • Andrea Graham
  • Patient Safety Partner (to be recruited)

What is the challenge your project is going to address and how does it connect to the theme?

The COVID-19 pandemic brought inequalities in healthcare to the forefront. For example, the majority of pregnant women who died were from ethnic minority backgrounds. Even before the pandemic, women from these backgrounds were more likely to die in and around their pregnancy.

In order to improve care for any group of patients, we must collect routine feedback from the patients themselves. Research has reported that language is a dominant barrier for healthcare access, very little feedback is received from patients who are non-English speaking. This makes it difficult to improve services. This project aims to use digital technology to translate feedback surveys and to make them more accessible (e.g. providing IPads in confidential areas for providing feedback. Using quality improvement methodology will ensure that the changes are making a measurable impact and that findings lead to improvement in priority areas.

What does your project aim to achieve?

The aim will be to increase the patient feedback received from non-English speaking patients using the Trusts sexual health services from 0% to 50%. This project will allow us to work with some of the most vulnerable groups that the Trust cares for, to help improve services.

Individuals who are non-English speaking may struggle more to access care and therefore may be at risk of poorer health outcomes. We want to further understand and address why this may be by gathering feedback.

Once feedback is received from users, we can help to identify priority areas for improvement, using QI methodology we can continuously monitor whether services are improving for these groups of patients.

Using the funding, the Trust will link with local leaders to engage a diverse range of patient and public volunteers to help ensure the project is right and we are hearing from people that we don’t usually hear from.

How will the project be delivered?

An expert faculty will be developed that includes the relevant internal colleagues but also external consultants who will use their expertise and experience to make the development process more efficient. To ensure efficient use of resources, the project will be tested in one sexual health clinic and gradually scaled up as interventions are refined.

To aid the testing process, interventions will be included in a driver diagram that will be developed with the expert faculty and improved over time.

As the interventions are refined they will be included in a change package/guide for any service to adapt and use.

How is your project going to share learning?

To share learning, communication and publication strategies will be developed. This will be guided by members of the project expert faculty with communications backgrounds, research backgrounds and Patient Safety Partners. The strategies are likely to include:

  • A website with more information about the work
  • Quality Improvement Project publication to reach an international audience and help others to do similar work
  • Linking with local communities to increase awareness of the work
  • Contacting local radio stations to increase awareness of the work
  •  Resources including the change package to be shared once developed with Q members and the wider system across the UK and Ireland

The learning and improvement should be continuous, therefore the website will include a dashboard and visual tools to see how many people are engaging with the feedback mechanisms, and provide case studies of how the feedback had made a difference.

How you can contribute

  • Experience of similar improvement projects
  • Peer reviews.
  • Available resources
  • Recommendations on how to connect with under represented groups
  • Recommendations on how to engage with media
  • Recommendations on how to engage with community leaders
  • Support with scaling the improvement work nationally if good outcomes are identified.
  • Shared, translated patient information leaflets to help increase adherence to contraception and therefore reduce unplanned pregnancies.

Plan timeline

1 Jul 2022 Faculty formed including patient and community representatives
1 Aug 2022 initial testing of translated forms
1 Sep 2022 Website development
1 Oct 2022 Test digital solutions
1 Oct 2022 analyse initial data, feedback and develop case studies


  1. Such an important thing you are aiming to address. It has some connections with our project proposal - Hearing those seldom heard. I would like to see a little more about how you are involving people who use sexual health services in the design and implementation of the solution.

    1. This is good that the importance of the project has been recognised -thank you. In other specialties, we may have developed focus groups, however due to the strict confidentiality associated with Sexual Health users and their reluctance often to even have family members know or to be contacted at home, there are some difficulties.

      We plan to start by engaging service users within clinics which have pre-booked patients (needing interpretation), developing suggestion and feedback channels.

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