Evaluation of the Impact of Consumer Engagement during COVID-19
January 2020 to January 2021
HCQ sought funding from Queensland Health to commission an independent evaluation of the impact of consumer engagement had during COVID-19 in its first year (January 2020-2021). Much of the learnings from this time, as well as from the recent Omicron surge in early 2022, demonstrates the importance of partnering with consumers during pandemics.
This evaluation clearly demonstrates the importance of meaningful consumer engagement.
The report found key positive outcomes from engaging consumers and Health Consumers Queensland during COVID-19, including:
- HCQ was assertive, advocating from the outset that consumer voices and representation was a strategic component in the pandemic response.
- HCQ identified population and service gaps and elevated relevant concerns and advice to a strategic level with Queensland Health.
- HCQ partnered with Queensland Health to improve communications with the community and create information and resources to assist consumers to navigate health system changes.
- HCQ extended the outreach and distribution of trusted and reliable pandemic information into regions and back to relevant central leadership areas of the Department.
In 2020-21, Health Consumers Queensland received COVID-19 funding from Queensland Health. Major projects initiated as part of this funding included:
- Amplifying the voices of young people – resulting in the development of a Youth Engagement Framework with plans underway to continue to involve young people in systems decision-making
- Evaluation of the Impact of consumer engagement during COVID-19
- Additional staffing and resourcing to support additional COVID-19 engagement support between consumers and the health system.
Annual Survey 2020
Every year, Health Consumers Queensland undertakes our Annual Survey to understand if our work is hitting the mark. We want to know how we can do better and where we can improve as well as what’s working well already.
This year we aimed for a short and snappy questionnaire, acknowledging the burden of answering yet another survey in a year of full of consultation. You rose to the challenge and more than 60 of you shared your thoughts and perspectives on a range of topics including training, recruitment, and online engagement.
Many of you want us to continue to do what we’ve been doing! In particular, you want a continued focus on training for Hospital and Health Service staff and advocacy for consumer involvement in all parts of the health system. Importantly, you want us to increase our focus on rural and regional health, aged care, culturally and linguistically diverse consumers and a wider range of opportunities for consumers of all experience levels.
These survey results will help to guide our work in 2021 and beyond. Thank you so much for your participation!