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1956 Putting young people at the centre of their health decisions & choices
  1. Becks Mortimer1,
  2. Young People’s Steering Group (need to seek permission to use names) Youth Forums from across London2,
  3. Anna Walsh3
  1. 1NHSi/E CYP Transformation Team, London Region
  2. 2London Youth Board, Spotlight Youth Club, Partnership for Young London, Mayor of London’s Peer Outreach Worker team, and Barnardo’s Harrow Horizons Youth Panel
  3. 3NHSE CYP Transformation Team, London Region


Objectives The 2021 CQC National Children and Young Person (CYP) inpatient survey showed that only 47% of CYP surveyed said they’d been involved in decisions about their care. Our objective is to shift this to 95%.

Through a youth-led campaign event, we have:

  1. Empowered Children and Young People through knowledge, skills, and confidence development to navigate and better access health-based resources.

  2. Raised awareness and improved skills of healthcare professionals to build positive relationships with young people and advocate for their rights in health.


Methods The NHS CYP Transformation Programme partnered with London Youth Board, Spotlight Youth Club, Partnership for Young London, Mayor of London’s Peer Outreach Worker team, and Barnardo’s Harrow Horizons Youth Panel to bring together CYP from across London to plan and run a youth-led event/campaign to amplify young people’s voices in their health choices. The event was held on 28th July 2022.

A group of 15 young people assembled as a steering group and led two meetings in July 2022 to plan the details and workshops of the event.

Healthcare professionals were invited to come and take part in the event.

Event Activities

  • Quiz to test healthcare rights knowledge.

  • Storytelling – positive and negative experiences of healthcare

  • Workshops – Children and Young People and Healthcare Professional conversations on:

  • Building trust, confidence, and relationships

  • Power dynamics and health care

  • Accessibility and health care

  • Mental Health

  • Reverse Panel – Healthcare professionals submitted questions to a panel of young experts about their healthcare experiences.

Results Co-produced event with over 60 young people and 25 healthcare professionals in attendance having honest conversations about how to improve healthcare with and for Children and Young People.

Preliminary themes

  1. Young people don’t feel listened to or valued by healthcare professionals, which causes mistrust and delays seeking help.

  2. Traditional health care environments can be stressful for young people. Most prefer to seek care in alternate environments.

  3. More diversity and training is needed within the healthcare system to provide better care to all ethnicities, gender identities, ages, and cultures.

  4. Healthcare professionals should take a compassionate and holistic approach to helping young people, valuing the importance of mental health.

  5. Previous negative experiences with the health care system, and experiences of their peers, influence how Children and Young People feel about health care today.

  6. Young people are fearful about the future of the NHS.

  7. Young people find the health care system difficult to access and confusing, especially if you have a disability, learning disability and/or other support need.

  8. Young people want more choice over their healthcare: where, when, and who they see.

Conclusions We are working with our young steering group to share this campaign including:

  • Youth-led presentations on themes and outcomes to senior leadership groups within the NHS and beyond.

  • Blog writing and social media campaign.

  • Planning an online reverse panel so the campaign can reach more healthcare professionals.

  • Advocacy around the inclusion of under 16s in GP survey.

  • Other activities to be finalised.

This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited, appropriate credit is given, any changes made indicated, and the use is non-commercial. See:

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