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  • Writer's pictureHealthwatch Wokingham

What patients want: a vision for the NHS in 2030 - report from Healthwatch England

Our national body Healthwatch England has used the experiences of care from over 10 million people across the UK (including residents in Wokingham Borough) collected over the past ten years and created a bold vision for the NHS in 2030. Find out where we think the NHS should be in six years and how it can get there.

Where we are now

Healthwatch England are presenting this vision at a time when the NHS faces the most significant pressures in its history. It's not surprising that confidence that the NHS can provide for everyone is being undermined, with 43% of people believing the NHS cannot meet the whole country's needs.

Our vision therefore calls for a focus on three key themes:

  1. Making the NHS easier to access and navigate.

  2. Tackling health inequalities. 

  3. Building a patient-centred culture. 

Making the NHS easier to access and navigate

We all want to be seen quickly when we have new symptoms or concerns about our health. But alongside quicker access, patients also want simplicity at each touchpoint with the NHS. People told us they felt admin and communication can be slow, inefficient and sometimes lacking empathy. 

We want the NHS to consistently adopt an ‘excellent customer service’ ethos, ensuring people can get their queries answered and appointments booked. We also want patients to be able to access real-time information about their care, and have a two-way dialogue with those responsible for their care. 

Tackling health inequalities

Health inequalities in England are stark and growing. Those living in the most deprived areas can expect to live in good health for a far shorter period compared to those in the least deprived areas. Multiple factors create these inequalities, but in healthcare people experience varying quality of care. 

We want the NHS to provide excellent care for everyone. Gaps in life expectancy and healthy life expectancy between the most well off and deprived areas should be falling by 2030. We are also calling for Integrated Care Systems to work with local councils to ensure communities get advice and support to prevent ill health, and that people with extra communication needs receive full support every time they interact with the NHS. 

Building a patient-centred culture in the NHS

The majority of patients told us they felt respected by healthcare professionals. However, we see that the care experience varies considerably. The NHS still has a culture focused on the system’s business – not that of the patients. 

By 2030, we want a fundamental shift in the culture of the NHS so that there is a greater focus on listening to patients and acting on their experiences to improve care today and in the future. 


Download the full report

Share your views, thoughts and experiences on local NHS services with us here.

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