Don’t talk down to us!

Young people from Hucknall told health chiefs they are fed up of being ‘spoken down to and patronised’ when they use the NHS.

More than 40 youngsters from across the county took part in a ‘Mystery Shopper’ project to evaluate how ‘young-person friendly’ health services are.

On Thursday they took part in a presentation of their findings at Mansfield’s MyPlace youth Centre.

The event also reported back on the views of more than 1,000 young people aged 10 – 25 who have recently filled in a Young People’s Health Survey, which aims to discover which services are important to this age group and what topics are most frequently discussed.

The survey revealed that young people feel that they receive enough information on a range of topics but are lacking awareness and knowledge on the subject of mental and emotional health and wellbeing.

They would also like an information service online where they could get answers to health queries, quickly and easily.

Speaking at the event, Sophie Clark, 15 a member of the Youth parliament for Ashfield South said: “There should be more confidentiality - when young people go into a GPs they don’t talk to us as they would with adults.

“When I went in and asked for something the woman shouted across the reception which was full of people. I don’t want to feel like I am a child when I go to a GP. GPs should not talk to us in a patronising way and they should be more straight forward.”

Aimee Johnson, 14, from Hucknall said there should me more support for pupils who were stressed and pressurised by studying for exams.

She said:”We need people to talk to who have gone through it and can give us tips on how to cope under stress.”

Coun Joyce Bosnjak, chairman of the Nottinghamshire Health and Wellbeing Board, said: “We want Nottinghamshire’s young people to be healthy and safe and to make choices that benefit them and others.

“Young people should have a loud voice in shaping health services and we want to empower them to be confident users and consumers of all aspects of our health services.

“Young people need to know that they are welcomed, valued and respected whatever their ethnicity, religion, gender or sexuality.”