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Developing Hybrid engagement tool to improve equity of access

We would like to develop an hybrid engagement tool (online and offline) that will help teams engage with communities to understand barriers to access of care and thus improve equity.

Read comments 5
  • Proposal
  • 2022

Meet the team


  • Amy Donovan, Josie Harding, members of User centred design and Co-design expert teams

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

Since early 2021, MSEFT exec has approved a programme focusing on reducing health inequalities in the  population we serve. Our initial focus was to undertake an analysis of waiting list using all the protected characteristics we had data for. We worked with various specialties to understand the unwarranted variation in their specialty to develop action plans. one of the groups that had unwarranted variation across board was ‘working age women’. There is limited literature published on causes and remedies to reduce this inequity.

We have started engagement with this group (more than half of our staff are working age women!) but with covid, work/care pressures (asking working age women who don’t attend appointments to attend service user sessions!), this is a challenge. We are bringing together the worlds of improvement, digital, user-centered design etc to enable faster and better understanding of issues and hence wanted to ask for Q community’s support.

What does your project aim to achieve?

The aim of the work is to:

– Develop a set of hybrid tools (online and offline) that will help us engage with the various parts of the population using the expertise of local, regional and national experts

We hope by doing this we will be able to give frontline teams the capability to engage with communities to understand barriers to access of care and help improve equity of care

How will the project be delivered?

This project will be delivered as part of the Health inequalities programme which sits within MSEFT’s Chief Strategy and Improvement officer’s portfolio. This uses expertise of:

– Improvement science

– evidence review

– analytics/predictive modelling

– project/programme management

-clinical/community engagement

– evaluation methodology

and has strategic partnership with co-design experts, locally and nationally.

As this is part of our health-inequalities programme, we have board level sponsorship and involvement of various system partners from MSE Health and care partnership.

Through our health inequalities work so far, our approach has been to disseminate our learning via a toolkit e.g. we tested a Health inequalities deep dive framework on behalf of our system partners and helped develop a toolkit so that other partners could implement the approach.

We expect this project to deliver such a toolkit (for offline and online engagement) that can be used by any frontline team.

Use expertise within Q community to support this project

How is your project going to share learning?

We propose to use the local, regional and national expertise to develop a hybrid toolkit that can be used by any frontline team seeking to engage specific groups to understand barriers to access and make changes in the service to improve them.

We will make this toolkit available on our website, Q community and through various other communities so that it can be used by anyone in need of tools for engaging various communities in a hybrid way.

We will also develop a expert Q community group to support in development of this toolkit which will then create avenues for further dissemination

We will use a learning-lab like methodology to continuously test and further develop the toolkit. this will also involve co-design experts and innovators which will further help spread the work. MSEFT is partner in NHS Clinical Entrepreneur programme, runs local innovation programme which gives further spread opportunities.

How you can contribute

  • We will use the Working-age-woman project or similar sub-focus area within MSEFT's health inequalities programme to test the work we do through this project.
  • We would need experts in online and offline engagement from Q community to come forward to help develop this toolkit.
  • we would need expertise of networkers and collaborators to help develop this project.

Plan timeline

6 Jun 2022 Project initiation
13 Jun 2022 Initiate recruitment of team for project delivery
5 Sep 2022 Project team in place
3 Oct 2022 series of workshops to help develop the hybrid toolkit
7 Nov 2022 parallel process to test the tool prototype
27 Mar 2023 Hybrid tool developed
3 Apr 2023 spread of toolkit via various routes
5 Jun 2023 Project Completion


  1. Really keen to understand more about this tool.  So many programmes where we could apply this engagement tool to across our improvement programme, to understand people's lived experience.

  2. Thank you for your comments. appreciate a few more before we finalise next week.

  3. This project sounds really interesting & exciting - so important that we understand what these barriers are for this population group and how we can make further improvements to address. Really like the idea of a set of hybrid tools for frontline teams to use. Be interesting to see what ideas for this come through- good luck with your project!

  4. Guest

    This is a really interesting project. Is the variation for 'working aged women' consistent across other characteristics, or are some more marked? This will be a great opportunity to engage and improve across the whole ICS.

  5. This is a great opportunity to understand this challenge from another perspective - whose problem are we really solving in addressing this? How can we use this project to understand the experience of women in accessing services and really using this to transform how we structure care and support.

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