Find out what children and young people have to say about health and care services in Devon.


The debate on health and care services in Devon tends to focus on the County’s ageing population.  But we are keen to ensure that experiences and needs of young people are taken just as seriously – not least because early help for young people can have lifelong benefits.

A year ago, we published a report on young people’s views on health and care services in Devon. They told us that their main health issues were mental health (including depression/anxiety, self-harm and eating disorders), smoking, drugs and alcohol, and sexual health and pregnancy.

To ensure that young people’s views continue to be heard, we undertook a survey to find out whether those views had changed in the last year.

What we did

Between the 1st February and 31st May 2016, we spoke to young people across Devon asking them what health issues matter to them, how they think health services could be improved, and how active they are.

Children and Young People: Speaking out on health and care services

Read our report

Our findings

427 young people took part in our survey.

The top 3 healthcare issues that respondents indicated were most important to them include: depression and anxiety, sexual health and self harm.

Key areas for improvement identified from the feedback provided include: better access to healthcare services, attitudes of healthcare staff, access to information and better access to support for children and young people.

The top 3 reasons that prevent respondents from being physically active include: education/work commitments, a lack of motivation and a physical health issue.

Read our full report here.

Follow up

We have shared our findings with providers and commissioners. The report has been well received and you can find responses to our findings in the Appendix.

We will continue to work with children and young people to allow them to share their views on issues affecting their health and wellbeing. We will ensure that these views are shared with decision makers so improvements can continue to be made to health and social care services for children and young people.

We will also continue to encourage conversations between children, families and healthcare professionals so that they are involved in the decision making process when it comes to commissioning and delivery of health and social care services.

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