Over the summer Mike Freer MP ran his annual Summer School for local young people, which gave them a taste of working in politics and engaging with the general public. One of the tasks he set them was to design and deliver a flier inviting local residents to attend a free ‘Health MOT’ drop-in event in the car park of Waitrose on Ballards Lane. At the drop-in, two qualified nurses and a support worker offered a range of non-invasive health checks and advice on healthy living and the early detection of cancer.
As in previous years, the event was kindly funded by the Public Health Team at the London Borough of Barnet and run by Williams and Associates, the healthcare training company. The company has now reported back on the event and the feedback is very positive. 39 members of the public and a number of the students receiving health checks; those that took part reported that they valued the experience and that is had made them think about some of their lifestyle choices, such as healthier eating and reducing their salt intake.
Below is the detailed feedback supplied by Williams and Associates.
From the public
The summer school students were asked to talk to visitors after they had had their health MOT in order to complete the feedback form and views on the event.
26 of the 39 seen (66%) completed the forms with the help of the summer school students.
The feedback form asked: ‘Following your visit today how likely are you to improve your lifestyle by doing any of the following’?
I will be eat more fruit and vegetables and less processed foods
23(88 %) said they were either very likely or likely to.
2 persons stated they were unlikely to increase their intake
1 person stated that this was not applicable to them i.e. they were already doing this.
I will increase my daily activity
23 (88 %) said they were either very likely or likely to increase activity
1 person stated they were unlikely to increase their activity
2 persons stated that this was not applicable to them i.e. they were already achieving this.
I will seek advice to help me “stop smoking”
3 persons said they were either very likely or likely to seek advice
23 (88%) stated this was not applicable to them i.e. they were not smokers.
I will reduce my weekly alcohol intake
6 said they were very likely or likely to reduce their alcohol intake
5 (12%) stated they were unlikely to reduce their intake
31 (75%) stated that this was not applicable to them
People were also invited to add some of their own comments and some of these were
“Excellent service, very welcome, staff extremely helpful”
“Very pleased” “Amazing” “Very welcome and useful checks thank you”
“Very good as people don’t realise how good or bad their health is”
“Thanks very useful and informative” “Excellent!” “Very impressed”
“Thank you for the opportunity” “I think what you do here is brilliant. Thank you”
“I think this is an amazing idea thank you” “Thank you” “Good idea”
“Amazing opportunity" I advise everyone to get checked”
“Very useful as I’ve been anxious about my blood sugar”
“Very useful reassuring to have blood pressure taken not done for a while
From the students
Feedback was collected from the students during the debrief session after the MOT event verbally and in written form
All rated the day as “good”, “very good” or “excellent”.
Verbal feedback included:-
Several students took the opportunity to have a health check themselves
Students expressed that the day had made them consider their own lifestyle especially regarding diet and exercise
Students felt the activity had been very useful for them and some said they gained confidence in speaking to people
Really enjoyed being part of the event
Students generally felt the MOT exercise was very useful and were really surprised at how many people were interested in having a health check
Below are some of the comments added by the students to their evaluation forms
“The information was very useful”
“Today’s event has taught me how to react when someone is unconscious”
“I now know exactly what to do if someone needs first aid”
“Today’s event will benefit me in the future, I now have a clearer knowledge of first aid”
“Helped me to improve my confidence”
“Made me more aware of prevention and how this could help the NHS”
“I will change some of my lifestyle choices”
“I have a better understanding of health”
Those members of the public who attended the health MOT and spoke to the nurses appeared to: -
Welcome the opportunity to discuss issues regarding their health
Accepted the opportunity to take on ways to improve their long-term health such as
Importance of reporting early symptoms
Screening programmes for cancer
Increasing their daily activity
Eating less salt and fat
Ways to reduce stress
Eating more fruit and vegetables
Eating more fish especially oily fish
During the event approximately hundreds of leaflets were given out.
During the educational sessions students appeared fully engaged and interested in all topics and asked many questions
A small number had previously attended a first aid course before but were keen to refresh their skills
This year Williams and Associates produced a briefing sheet for the students so they had the correct information on the content and process of the health MOT as preparation for their flyer design (see appendix 8)
Following comments from previous year’s events of having too many students around the gazebo this year the students were assigned to two teams each assisting for 60 minutes either giving out health leaflets or interviewing members of the public on their experience of the health MOT or completing the feedback questionnaire. This worked well
Having name badges helped students to feel confident in approaching members of the public
Students gave out some 500 hundred leaflets on health advice