Engaging young people in NHS service delivery and development: Recommendations from a scoping review and research project

Lizzie Wortley, Ann Hagell, Louca-Mai Brady

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

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Young people need to be involved at all levels of our healthcare system, from shaping the care they are receiving at the front line right up to co-designing and inputting to strategic change. What we mean by health services in this context is any NHS funded or branded service that manages the health and wellbeing of young people (10-25 year olds), ranging from primary care, through secondary and tertiary services, and including community services, mental health services, and allied health professional services such as physiotherapy and occupational health.
NHS England is committed to working in partnership with young people but this requires planning, resources and guidance. There is high level policy support for this, and anecdotal accounts of good work going on in practice on the ground. However, despite high levels of commitment to working together with young people and representing their voice in policy and planning, our understanding of what is actually happening on the ground within the system is somewhat lacking. NHSE’s children and young peoples’ transformation team commissioned the authors to map the territory and provide an understanding of what we do and do not know about best practice in this area. As a result of an evidence scope and our own research into what is happening in the system, we concluded that very limited progress had been made in developing this workstream in recent years. Echoing other reports dating back two decades, our conclusions were that we need better accounts of what is going on, more resources dedicated to these kinds of activities, and some serious investment in evaluating impact. These conclusions do not need repeating and provide us with nothing new. What we need now is action to improve the evidence base. This document, linked to reports on the associated research and scoping review lists recommendations for taking forward work in this area.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherAssociation for Young People's Health
Commissioning bodyNHS England
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2024


  • Young people
  • participation
  • health services
  • NHS


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