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Be prepared if you get sick over Easter

With Easter fast approaching, local health professionals are reminding people to examine their options should they or their family members become unwell over the long weekend.

Many GP practices will be closed on the bank holidays over Easter, so it is also wise for people to think about repeat prescriptions they will need before the holiday period begins.

Dr Rob Caudwell, a Southport GP and NHS Southport and Formby CCG chair, said: “We remind people to examine their options all year round but it is even more important over the bank holidays when GP practices are closed.

“We want to make sure that people have a good Easter break and that they use the right service should they need it. We don’t want patients to become poorly and have to spend part of their holiday in hospital. Another thing we don’t want to happen is for people to run out of their medication but it is also important that they don’t over order to avoid unnecessary waste.

Dr John Caine, a GP in Parbold and chair at NHS West Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “We are reminding people about the services on offer to them such as advice on the NHS choices website and by calling NHS 111 which will be invaluable over Easter.

“Your pharmacist can also give you useful advice on how to deal with common bugs, such as coughs, colds, sore throats and the flu so that you can take precautions and have a great Easter.”

The local NHS CCGs in Southport, Formby and West Lancashire are reminding people that A&E and 999 services are for life-threatening and serious conditions.

Feeling Unwell? – Examine Your Options

Across the area there are a range of health services to support people if they feel unwell or have any health concerns. There are services which you may be unfamiliar with, but could be more appropriate and convenient for you depending on your specific issue.

For minor ailments and injuries your best route to recover is likely to be self-care. There are a variety of services that can support you to do this:

Pharmacy Services

Your local pharmacy can offer free, confidential and expert advice on a range of health issues. They can help you prepare for many of the common illnesses like coughs and colds and ensure you have a well-stocked medicine cabinet over the holiday period.

NHS.UK

You can find a wealth of trusted advice about hundreds of health conditions and details of GPs, pharmacies and dentists in your local area by visiting the NHS.uk website:  www.nhs.uk. It also includes a symptom checker.

NHS 111

When you need medical help or advice fast, but it is not a 999 emergency, you can also call the NHS 111 service.  NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and calls are free from mobiles and landlines.

If you need medical care for illnesses you cannot treat yourself, then your GP should be your next port of call.

Your Local GP

Your GP should be your first point of contact for non-emergency illnesses you can’t treat yourself. Your GP is available from 8.00am to 6.30pm weekdays.

If you don’t have a GP, you can register with your local surgery. If you’re not sure where this is, you can find out at: www.nhs.uk or call 0300 77 77 007.

GP Out of Hours Service

If your local surgery is closed, you can still see a GP with the GP out-of-hours service; just call 111 and you can speak to a local GP over the phone or face to face if necessary. 

It is very likely that you and your family will be seen and treated more quickly using the out-of-hours service than if you were waiting to see a doctor in A&E, especially at busy times.

For more information please visit www.examineyouroptions.info

For Southport and Formby pharmacy opening times over the bank holiday please visit: www.southportandformbyccg.nhs.uk/your-health-and-services/pharmacy-opening-times-over-easter-bank-holiday

For West Lancashire pharmacy opening times over the bank holiday, please visit www.westlancashireccg.nhs.uk/resources/patient-and-public-information/west-lancashire-pharmacy-bank-holiday-opening-times

Living Well in Sefton for World Health Day

Local well-being organisation, Living Well Sefton, is inviting Sefton residents to mark World Health Day on Friday, 7 April by taking part in a postcard raffle to win one of a variety of prizes at their well-being event outside the Strand Shopping Centre in Bootle.

Living Well Sefton will also be joined by Active Sefton, May Logan Centre and the Feelgood Factory between 10am – 4pm on the blue health bus to talk about the different ways people can feel better about themselves.

 

Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital

Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital, Thomas Drive, Liverpool L14 3PE

 Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital is holding a free public health information event on Cardiac Devices. 

Consultant Cardiologist Dr Jay Wright will give an easy to understand presentation on a range of cardiac devices including pacemakers, ICD and CRT defibrillators.

Find out more about:

  • Which patients need a pacemaker, ICD or CRT defibrillator device?
  • What do devices look and feel like?
  • How to live with a device.

There will also be an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the session.

Everyone is welcome including patients, families, carers, students and colleagues.

Our Election Information Open Evening is also taking place at 5.30 – 6.30pm before Cardiac Devices for anyone interested in becoming a Public Governor at LHCH for our Merseyside, Cheshire or North Wales constituencies.

To book your place at either of these events or for further information, please contact the LHCH Membership Office by emailing membership.office@lhch.nhs.uk or call 0151 600 1410, visit www.lhch.nhs.uk or follow us on Twitter @LHCHFT 

Our next events are:

  • Saturday 6 May, 10am-1pm, LHCH:  Annual Open Day
  • Wednesday 24 May, 7pm, Ramada Plaza Wrexham:  Diabetes

Care at the Chemist scheme to continue

Health commissioners in Sefton have confirmed that following a recent review the Care at the Chemist scheme, available via community pharmacies, will continue from the 1st April 2017 although it will be available from fewer pharmacies. 

Pharmacists ordinarily and routinely provide health advice to their customers regardless of Care at the Chemist but the scheme additionally ensures residents have access to a range of medicines for minor illnesses for which they might otherwise consider a trip to the doctor.     

Medicines that are supplied to a patient as a result of their Care at the Chemist consultation are free for those who do not already pay for their prescriptions. All items available on the scheme are also available to buy over the counter.

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, like many other CCGs, are required to make savings where possible but are keen to keep this valuable service where they can to help those residents who need it.

Following reviews of current services the CCGs have informed pharmacies that the consultation fee for the scheme will be reduced for 2017-18 which has led to a number of pharmacies choosing to no longer provide the additional  service. There will however be 14 pharmacies across Sefton who will continue to offer the service.

The range of medicines currently available is also being reviewed in order to make the scheme more efficient.

Dr Rob Caudwell, local GP and chair of NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “In this challenging financial climate we are having to make savings on many of our services but we do understand how valuable Care at the Chemist is, particularly for the borough’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged communities. We are therefore pleased to be able to support the pharmacies who voluntarily wish to offer this service to patients.”

Dr Andrew Mimnagh, local GP and chair of NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “We are still reminding people to use their pharmacy for health advice for minor illnesses. Whether it is through the Care at the Chemist scheme or not, pharmacists can offer you advice on a wide range of minor health conditions and offer medication to assist.” 

 

A full list of pharmacies offering Care at the Chemist as of 1st April 2017 can be found on each CCG web page below:

www.southportandformbyccg.nhs.uk/your-health-and-services/care-at-the-chemist
www.southseftonccg.nhs.uk/your-health-and-services/care-at-the-chemist

First ever health and wellbeing event for those affected by cancer

The first ever ‘Health and Wellbeing event’ for people affected by cancer is to be held in south Sefton.

The free event, a joint venture between NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Sefton Council, will be held on Tuesday 18th April at The Meadows Leisure Centre in Maghull. It is for anyone who has been affected by cancer, whether directly or through supporting a friend or family member.  

The event will run from 12.30pm – 3.30pm where there will be lots of information stalls for people to visit and access support from cancer nurse specialists, support groups and other key organisations. There will also be a healthy eating demonstration and a virtual gym session.

Dr Debbie Harvey, Macmillan GP at NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “These events are ideal for people to come along and meet others who have had a similar experience. It is always useful to share and the hope is that there may be an activity or group out there that suits an individual’s needs, so you might go away with an idea of what we can help you with. It’s a friendly and informative event and everyone is very welcome.”

Clare Byrne, lead cancer nurse at Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This is the first event we are running in the community in south Sefton but similar events have been a huge success in Southport.

“The events aim to support people in adjusting to life with and beyond cancer by providing information on the wide range of services which are available locally as well as healthy living activities.”

Anyone affected by cancer, either recently or in the past, as well as family and friends supporting others are welcome to book onto this free event.

The events are friendly and educational with the opportunity for visitors to chat to cancer nurse specialists, key organisations and support groups.

The Health and Wellbeing events are free of charge and refreshments are provided, but booking is essential. To book onto the next event please call 0151 920 0726 ext 217

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