Options UK has been developing and training people in a variety of areas for many years. We draw extensively on our own professional insights, where our own ‘on the ground’ experience enables us to give essential guidance. We give the conceptual foundations and the practical tools that all people working in health and social care need to address health inequalities. We have trained and are currently giving professional support to a variety of audiences, including local health and social care agencies, youth groups, third sector agencies and advocacy organisations.
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Public and Patient Engagement
Public and Patient Engagement (PPE) is at the heart of Options UK’s work, and is a requirement for many health and social agencies. However, strategies for conducting PPE are not always readily understood, and in some areas (like sexual and reproductive health) quite complex to conduct. Engagement with service users appears to come at a high cost, if staff time and resources are scarce.
Options UK’s training use interactive methods, ‘real life’ case studies and tool kits to enable course attendees to get a grip on methods that are easy to roll out, generate real insights into customer needs and motivations, and establish collaborative means of engaging people in the commissioning and service development cycle.
This course is aimed at local commissioners, health and social care agencies and third sector organisations who want to improve their public and patient engagement strategies.
Sexual Health Needs Assessments ‘How to’
In 2005, Options UK (formerly Design Options) was commissioned by the Department of Health to produce a ‘How to Guide’ for conducting Sexual Health Needs Assessments. Since then, this guide has been widely used by local PCTs, health observatories and health protection agencies. Options UK has conducted over 30 sexual and reproductive health needs assessments since 2005.
A local or regional sexual health needs assessment provides evidence for the strategic planning, commissioning, development and provision of high quality, innovative, productive, preventative and world class sexual health services.
This training will build on Options UK’s guide, providing guidance based on our extensive experience in this field. The course covers:
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- Stakeholder analysis
- Analysing and identifying local data that you can use
- Use patient and service level data
- Designing and conducting service reviews
- Mapping service configurations
- Engaging with marginalized populations.
Participatory Research for Engaging ‘Hard to Reach’ Groups – The PEER approachPEER is a participatory qualitative research method designed by experts at Options Consultancy Services Ltd in collaboration with academics at Swansea University. Members of a community (peer researchers) are trained to carry out in-depth conversational interviews with friends in their social networks, and to report back findings in a series of in-depth interviews with a social scientist. Peer researchers are often from marginalised and harder to reach social groups, and PEER works equally well with non-literate groups.
By working with established relationships of trust between friends, PEER generates rich narrative data which provide insight into how people view their world, and how they make decisions on key issues. The close partnerships developed with peer researchers represent entry points for future work with marginalised social groups.
The PEER team can train and support organisations to conduct their own PEER project, working alongside them, usually on a specific project. This approach gives an organisations the practical insights into planning and managing a participatory qualitative research project, the types of data it generates, and how to analyse the research findings.
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Using a Service User Approach – Design for Health
Service design can support service providers and commissioners to review service configurations and make real improvements in service delivery, cost effectiveness and quality of care. Under current health service changes, services are increasingly going to have to compete for clients.
Using the principles of service design, this course will enable participants to adopt a service-user’s perspective on services, understanding what service users want and how best to attract them through the door, making the best use of available resources for the least amount of investment. Our service design lead Lucy Denham will be on hand to give practical guidance and direction to understanding this approach.
This course was successfully rolled out under the North East Improvement Efficiency Partnership (NEIEP), and can be delivered to a diverse audience across health and social care agencies.