In a world first, a pioneering new facility dubbed ‘TripAdvisor for wheelchair services’ aiming to give disabled people a voice to rate and review their experiences, is being backed by national disability charity Whizz-Kidz.
Disabled people unhappy with the wheelchair service they get, who have had to endure lengthy waits, or those wanting to praise a service that’s helped them can now do just that – anonymously – on patient experience website www.iwantgreatcare.org.
Whizz-Kidz is proud to support and encourage users to engage with the new service, with CEO Ruth Owen OBE claiming it will paint a true picture of the experiences of wheelchair users across the UK:
‘Whizz-Kidz knows from listening to the young people and their families who have to turn to us, that in many areas wheelchair users have lengthy waits and often aren’t given appropriate equipment by their local NHS wheelchair service,’ she said.
‘We believe iWantGreatCare.org affords us all – including me as a wheelchair user – an opportunity to reflect the reality of wheelchair services across the UK, and affect lasting change by having our voices heard and concerns acted upon.’
The site already provides a platform for feedback on other aspects of healthcare including doctors, hospitals and pharmacies, the latest service is aimed at giving a voice to wheelchair users. Already a number of users have documented their experiences, with claims of a postcode lottery of services, and unsuitable equipment for young people.
Others have commended their local service for putting the user at the centre of the consultation for a new chair and keeping them informed throughout the process.
iWantGreatCare.org.uk site founder Neil Bacon said: ‘It’s time to listen to the previously unheard voices of wheelchair users and their families.’
Wheelchair user Dame Anne Begg – MP for Aberdeen South, and Chair of the Work and Pensions Select Committee – said: ‘This is a really important step in giving a voice to wheelchair users across the UK. As a wheelchair user myself and an MP representing wheelchair users and their families in my constituency, I am really excited by this development which, for the first time, will give wheelchair users the opportunity to rate and review the services they receive. I hope we will see improved services and better outcomes for wheelchair users as a result.’
To rate your service visit https://www.iwantgreatcare.org/reviews/search.
Whizz-Kidz estimates there are still over 70,000 children in the UK waiting for the right equipment to fit their young lives. The right wheelchair and mobility equipment is not automatically provided on the NHS. Whizz-Kidz aims to work where possible with local NHS services, and aims to ensure that much-needed improvements are made in delivering wheelchair services for children in the UK. www.whizz-kidz.org.uk.