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Digital inclusion and exclusion in health and social care

What’s on offer?

Participants will have the opportunity to learn from local and national research regarding the impact of digital exclusion on different groups. This will include specific consideration of digital poverty but also of more nuanced findings relating to privacy and dependency.

We will draw on the expertise of participants with lived experience and practitioners working in Dorset in a range of settings. Participants will leave with an increased awareness of the challenges for people in their local community and having had the opportunity to explore potential solutions which they can implement in their own practice.

What’s it about?

Why are we holding this event?

A recent patient experience survey of Weymouth and Portland residents conducted by the PPG identified that 24% are not connected to the internet. This figure rises to 35% for disabled people and 50% for those over the age of 75.

Dr Mel Hughes and Stevie Corbin-Clarke from the Bournemouth University Research Centre for Seldom Heard Voices have conducted research on the impact of digital exclusion on people at risk of marginalisation. The research, commissioned by National Voices (a coalition of 170 health and care charities in England), informed a national report exploring the impact of digital exclusion on access to services. The report identified a number of solutions which we are keen to share.

The Research Centre for Seldom Heard Voices has joined forces with the Weymouth and Portland Patient Participation Group (PPG) to host the event as part of the ESRC Festival of Social Science. The interactive event will be an opportunity to share the findings of the research and bring services together to learn from lived experiences and identify local solutions.

UPDATE - Having reviewed the local and national Covid figures, and discussed concerns with the event presenters, including Dr Tanya Stead, Clinical Director of the Weymouth and Portland Primary Care Network, we have made the decision to move this event online. We are hugely disappointed given the focus of this event and the people this may exclude. We do however feel that it is the only and right decision open to us at this stage. It may, of course, make it more inclusive for some, who may now be able to attend.We do have contingency plans in place. Although online, we have lots of ways of still ensuring that this is an engaging and interactive event. This will include opportunities to work in small groups and discuss challenges and solutions in our local area. Please see attached for a revised programme for the event. If you need any support regarding the technical aspects of taking part in the event, please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss.

Event details

This half-day workshop will bring together people working in health, social care and community services in West Dorset to discuss and explore the impact of digital exclusion on the public’s access to services and support.

Event format

The event will harness the expertise of the people attending using a world café event format. World café methods are an emerging method for exploring inclusion by facilitating meaningful conversations which create positive change.

Participants will have the opportunity to hear from people with lived experience about the impact of digital access to services and support and to share and identify solutions.


Dr Tanya Stead, Clinical Director of the Weymouth and Portland Primary Care Network (PCN)

Dr Mel Hughes and Stevie Corbin-Clarke from the Research Centre for Seldom Heard Voices at Bournemouth University

Peter Greensmith, Chair of the Weymouth and Portland Patient Participation Group (PPG) and member of the Primary Care Network (PCN) Partnership board.

Who’s leading the event?

Dr Mel Hughes and Stevie Corbin-Clarke, researchers in social work at Bournemouth University.

Open to

This event is targeted mainly at people working in health and social care, local government/ councils, relevant charities and other organisations. The event is also open to members of the public with a personal interest in the topics, provided they are confident in and prepared for contributing actively to discussions.