Healthwatch Portsmouth Volunteers, Board members and staff attended ‘Make Every Contact Count’ (MECC) training in November 2019. We are now receiving follow-up support from the course trainers to help us continue to engage with patients and the public in Portsmouth to understand how important it is to discuss behaviour change to help improve a person’s health and wellbeing.

The purpose of MECC training is to learn how improve a person’s health and wellbeing by helping them to change their behaviour.

The MECC training is designed to support any future interactions and conversations with patients and social care service users about their health and wellbeing and the services needed with those people providing them. The relevance of accessing MECC training to Healthwatch Portsmouth and other non-statutory bodies in the city is that we can then identify the themes discussed in the patient experience conversations and escalate these to the relevant services, seeking improvement or requesting provision where there are reported gaps.

By the end of last year Make Every Contact Count (MECC) had been provided to all staff working in Public Health at the City Council, 130 Care Navigators (in GP surgeries) across the city and, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, was being provided to housing association housing officer staff across the city. The more we talk about the benefits of MECC training the more organisations and groups are asking to receive the training on positive ways to have meaningful conversations about behaviour change that benefits our health. We recommend this training to any public facing organisation in Portsmouth.

As a patient or member of the public: if you have had a conversation with a health or social care professional in the last few months and it felt like it was more targeted towards improving your overall health and wellbeing by helping you to change your behaviour please let us know.

You can email us on info@healthwatchportsmouth.co.uk

You don’t need to tell us what the conversation was about, just tell us whether you felt it discussed improving your overall health and wellbeing through behaviour change, such moving on to a vape if you are a smoker, or making healthier decisions about what food to buy or cook.

We will (anonymise) and summarise the feedback we receive and send this to Portsmouth City Council to help encourage more commissioning of the MECC course to help public facing bodies reach even more people.

You can access the Public Health training programme here.