Patient experience

We love getting your feedback

When you tell us about our services, we like to share it with others. This is so we can learn from our patient's experiences. We want to know what is working well, and what may need improving. We do not identify people who give feedback. We changed names to protect their identity and always ask permission to share their stories. By telling your stories and giving your views you are helping us to achieve our goal of outstanding services. Thank you.

Some of the ways we find out about and use patients' experience of our services are:

Graphic of a clipboard with a list of ticked questions - white image on dark pink backgroundFriends and family test

Would you recommend our services to friends or family? We ask patients to complete a questionnaire and rate our service from 'very poor' to 'very good'. Your feedback helps us improve services.


YGraphic of a person with an open book - white on dark pink backgroundour stories

We use patient stories across HCT. They are told to our Board and Directors on a regular basis. They are also used by our staff to check how patients are accessing and responding to our services. Patients have given permission for us to share their stories. Below are some of our patient's stories.

YoGraphic showing two people with arrows connecting them in a continuous loop - white on dark pink backgroundu said we did

Providing outstanding services is our priority and we need your help to do that. We know completing surveys can be a low priority when you have been unwell. However, it really does help us to make things better for everyone. You can see some examples below of what we did after you gave us feedback on our services.

Friends and family test

Put us to the the test

The Friends and Family Test (FFT) helps us understand how happy you are with our services. It's a quick and anonymous questionnaire used across the NHS. You will be asked:

"Overall, how was your experience of our service?" 

You can rank your answer from "very good" to "very poor". You can add comments to explain your score. This is important as to make changes we need to know exactly what is or is not working

Who takes the test

Whenever you receive care or treatment from the NHS you may be asked to complete this questionnaire. You may be given a form to complete, but it can also sent by text or email.  A friend or family member can answer the question if you're unable to. You do not need to answer. But if you do your feedback give us valuable information to make improvements.

I was not offered the friends and family test

If you feel that you should have been given the opportunity to respond, but did not receive the questionnaire, speak to a member of staff first.

If you wish to give feedback contact our Patient Experience Team
Image of blue character pushing a pink character in a wheelchair. Includes NHS logo and links to video about the friends and family test











For more information about the Friends and Family Test watch the short video above.


You said we did

You said we did

You said information about what is available for Carers would have been useful.

Graphic showing two people with arrows connecting them in a continuous loop - white on dark pink backgroundWe provided information for Carers on the our website



You said it was difficult to plan the day when you did not know when the carers would be coming.

Graphic showing two people with arrows connecting them in a continuous loop - white on dark pink backgroundWe shared this feedback with the organisation responsible for the home carers.


You said communication needs to improve between everyone involved including carers.

Graphic showing two people with arrows connecting them in a continuous loop - white on dark pink backgroundWe undertook a survey which asked patients if they were asked how they would like information shared with carer and family members. This highlighted the need for this to be discussed with patients and recorded. This has been shared with all staff and the survey will be repeated to measure improvement

You said the feedback form was left in the notes, no one asked for it and there was not a return address

Graphic showing two people with arrows connecting them in a continuous loop - white on dark pink backgroundWe asked all staff to implement a system to ask patients who they are visiting at home, for feedback once a month

Your stories - care at home

Care at home 'she talked to Mum and found out what she needed'

Good experience: care at home from the Integrated Community Team

Graphic of a person with an open book - white on dark pink background The Occupational Therapist Megan was really, really good. She talked to Mum and found out what her needs were.

Equipment such as walking frame, toilet seat frame and bath seat were provided.

Prior to this Mum was not safe, she was hanging onto furniture and having falls.

The Therapists did what they said they would do and no chasing up was required.

The Physiotherapist and Occupational Therapist looked at Mum as a whole person.

Could talk to Therapists about health concerns that were significant but did not warrant a trip to GP.

Contact numbers left.

The Therapists visited at home following discharge from the rehabilitation ward. This was a fantastic service enabling continued work towards achieving independence goals.

Needs improvement 1: carers at home (not HCT service)

Graphic of a person with an open book - white on dark pink backgroundReally difficult to find home carers despite being provided with information about different agencies.

Carers constantly changing, no consistency.

Expected times of visits too long a time frame of 2 to 3 hours. We felt like prisoners in our home. I could not pop out when they were coming four times a day as no one would have been there to let the carers in. Bedtime could be as early as 6pm.

Needs improvement 2: information and communication

Graphic of a person with an open book - white on dark pink backgroundIt would have been good to know about things like day groups that Mum could go to as she is in the house on her own when I am at work. I don’t have time to explore the options as either at work or meeting Mum's care needs.

Information about what is available to Carers would have been useful. I found out about Dial a ride from a noticeboard at the supermarket.

When Mum needed a blood test she was too unwell to go out and was told by GP practice that it could not be done at home.

When a lot of services are involved it is difficult to know who provides what. A summary leaflet would have been useful.

Improved communication with Carer from the District Nurse and other services involved. The District Nurse goes in to change Mum’s bandages for her ulcer but I do not know when they have been in or whether it is getting better.

A feedback form was in notes at home and it was discovered by chance. The envelope to return it did not have full return address on it, just service name.

Carer rights

What carers should expect

Graphic showing two people, one hold a banner with scales of justice the other holds a banner with a tick sign - white on dark pink background You should expect to be valued and supported in you caring role. 

The Care Act 2014 legally entitles all adult carers to a Carer Assessment. This is regardless of the level of support you are providing someone.



Caring for someone covers lots of different things, such as:

  • Helping with washing, dressing, and feeding
  • Ensuring medication is being taken correctly
  • Checking to ensure someone is okay
  • Taking someone to regular appointments
  • Being a companion when they are anxious or lonely

Carer assessments

Carer Assessments are carried out by the local authority where the person you care for lives. You can have a Carer Assessment even if the person you care for does not get any formal help from their local authority. You do not need permission form the person you care for to request a Carer Assessment. You are entitled to a Carer Assessment in your own right.

The Carer Assessment looks at how caring affects your life. It helps you work out how you can carry on doing the things that are important to you and your family. It looks at your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Your assessment should cover:

  • Your caring role and how it affects your life and wellbeing
  • Your health – physical, mental and emotional issues
  • Your feelings and choices about caring
  • How your caring role affects your work, study, training and leisure
  • Relationships, social activities and your goals
  • Housing
  • Planning for emergencies, such as a backup plan

The aim of the assessment is to help you get the support you need. It is best to give
your honest opinion about your caring role, the care you provide and your feelings about being a carer. As a result of an assessment you may be eligible for support from your local authority. They will be able to offer advice and guidance to help you with your caring responsibilities.

You may wish to request a review of your Carer Assessment if your caring responsibilities change. Carer Assesments in Hertfordshire are done by the County Council.

Go to Carer Assessment at Hertfordshire County Council 

Caring from a distance

Caring can be more difficult if you do not live with or near to the person you care for, or if it takes you a long time to get to their home. In these situations it is important to plan ahead and consider any potential issues.

Get caring from a distance fact sheet


Understanding benefits that you and the person you care for may be entitled to can be a confusing and long process but it is worth checking. Age UK, Citizens Advice or the Money Advice Unit at your local authority can help, and they may also help with completing the application forms on your behalf.

Caring and working

It can be very challenging if you are trying to combine work with caring. The Work and
Families Act 2006 gives carers the right to request flexible working. This can take the form of flexible working arrangements: changing shifts to suit caring commitments; compressed hours (working agreed hours over fewer days or shifts); job shares or working from home.

You can make one request for flexible working per year. Although, the company you work for is legally obliged to consider your application, they do not have to agree with your proposals. If you wish to make more than one request in a year, you can still approach your employer to discuss flexible working arrangements. The charity Carers UK provide unpaid carers with expert information, advice and support. - including information about caring and working. 

Go to Carers UK website