The NHS Youth Forum are 24 young people who are passionate about improving the NHS. They work with NHS England, Public Health England and the Department of Health, enabling them to have a genuine impact on health services.
This year there are four sub-groups to the NHS Youth Forum, each tackling a different area of healthcare. Each subgroup launched a nationwide survey to gather the views of young people in their area of interest, before analysing the results and producing a report based on their findings. The reports, linked below, contain detailed recommendations that the Youth Forum believe will have a positive impact within the NHS, and have been produced alongside input from key NHS staff. We hope you enjoy reading them and share them widely!
Health Literacy Report
We’re the Health Literacy sub-group of the NHS Youth Forum, looking to develop easily understandable healthcare resources for children and young people across England! Young people can be bombarded with misinformation around our health, promoting anxiety and reducing our agency. With this research, we intend to improve the design of NHS Children and Young People’s resources on NHS Social media channels so that information is more user friendly and easier to understand.
Health Inequalities Report
We are the Healthcare Inequalities sub-group. We have a shared goal of educating patients about their rights within healthcare in an accessible way and helping to make suggestions surrounding waiting lists. This report focuses on the area of racial/ethnic disparities, medical misogyny, ableism, and gender affirming healthcare for transgender patients.
We are the NHS Youth Forum digital sub-group, focused on improving the NHS App, to make it more suitable for children and young people. We identified three main areas that we believe could be developed: the design and accessibility of the user interface of NHS apps, the possibility of tracking symptoms online, and the NHS app’s role in facilitating access to healthcare. Our goal is to decrease the anxiety often associated with accessing healthcare through the NHS and make the online experience more inviting overall. With a little work, a streamlined digital system can improve the well-being of both patients and healthcare providers.
Mental Health Report
We have chosen to look at mental health services for young people. In 2021, Young Minds found that only just over a 1/3 of young people with a diagnosable mental health condition receive NHS mental health support. As the mental health subgroup, we aim to share young people’s first-hand experience of mental health services and highlight good practices taking place at a local level in different areas across England. Mental health services are currently under a lot of stress and the care is inaccessible for many. We have focused on looking at the differences in care young people have received across the different regions.
TRIGGER WARNING! – The contents of this report may be emotionally and mentally challenging as they mention mental health crises and may make you reflect on your own mental health journey. If you require any support, stop reading the report and feel free to access these mental health helplines:
- Text: 85258
- Call: 116 123
If you have any questions about the reports and their content, or would like to talk in depth with the Youth Forum about their work, please contact Youth Engagement Coordinator Laurence Young: email@example.com.
Linked below, you can see some examples of the impact the NHS Youth Forum’s research has had in previous years on health services for young people: