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We presented at the Health and Adult Social Care Scrutiny Committee

On 9 February, Shelly Khan our Community and Engagement Volunteer Manager reported to the Health and Adult Social Care Scrutiny Committee meeting at the Town Hall with Cllr Alison Kelly.  

Shelly gave an insight into what was learned from Camden’s diverse Bangladeshi community on the problems they experience in accessing health and wellbeing services in Camden.

The presentation was about a joint initiative between Healthwatch Camden and the Scrutiny Committee: Learning from Camden's diverse Bangladeshi community to drive and sustain improvements in their health and wellbeing.

Cllr Alison Kelly said: “…We couldn’t have done the work without Shelly and without Healthwatch….”

The Bangladeshi community is the largest BME community in Camden and has the worst healthcare outcomes in Camden. Healthwatch Camden spoke to around 300 Bangladeshi people, both young and old, in a combination of focus groups and attending events and venues, such as mosques, schools, and community centres.

There were some encouraging findings, particularly how well Bangladeshi children are doing in school. However, a number of issues were raised as concerns which need addressing.

Shelly stated that some of the key findings were around mental health with Bangladeshi people voicing concern, for example, over the lack of GP referrals to appropriate services which results in long-term use of antidepressant medication which is not desired.

Benefits cuts are also cited as exacerbating the situation, and a lack of knowledge of places to go for help, which is made worse by a lack of appropriate services.

The project asked people what differences they would like to see in services, to improve their wellbeing.

Based on what people said, a range of recommendations were made which were sent to members of Camden’s Cabinet, and which asked for members to develop an action plan, outlining how progress will be measured, and report this back to the committee.

Councillors have already welcomed the report. Cllr Nasim Ali said:

“This is such a crucial report which has had so much engagement from the Bangladeshi community . It will make a massive difference to tackling health inequality in Camden.”

Cllr Meric Apak said “This is a fantastic piece of work which helps break down silos.” 

To see the full presentation click here and look at part 11 Report of the Bangladeshi Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Panel

Let us know your thoughts – comment below.