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Work starts on new £20 million Southport Hospital

Health chiefs got an early Christmas present when construction of Southport’s new £20 million mental health hospital got underway with a ceremony to mark ground breaking on the site.

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust Chairman Beatrice Fraenkel and Chief Executive Joe Rafferty were joined by construction partners and guests for the sod-cutting to commemorate the official start of building and ground works.

It will give a new lease of life to the historic site situated off Scarisbrick New Road, rejuvenating the only remaining hospital provision left on the former Southport General Infirmary site. The new-build will replace Mersey Care’s existing Boothroyd Unit located there, as well as nearby Hesketh Centre, which will close once the new facility is complete.

 The hospital will combine local mental health inpatient care and some related community services on one site, with its own parking and close to a main route well served by buses. All 44 bedrooms will all be single with en-suite bathrooms and patients will have access to inner garden courtyards, therapy and activity areas. There will be an on-site café for patients, visitors and staff, a family visiting room and sacred space, suite of offices and outpatient services.

Mersey Care’s Design Champion and Chairman Beatrice Fraenkel:

“We know that the right physical environment helps recovery and the design of our new building has been developed together with our service users and staff to ensure it’s both beautiful and therapeutic – and a great place to work.”

Chief Executive Joe Rafferty added:

“People in our care deserve the best standards of accommodation and therapeutic environments within the resources we have. This new hospital builds on the success of our most recent hospital at Clock View, Walton, and goes a long way towards parity for the people of Sefton who access our services.”

At the launch were representatives of Liverpool and Sefton Health Partnership (LSHP), which has over the past 12 years delivered 15 new health facilities, representing a capital investment of over £150 million across Liverpool and Sefton. LSHP General Manager Mike Webb said:

“LSHP has been honoured to be part of the health transformation that continues to take place across Merseyside. It is great to see a much-needed, modern mental health unit taking shape on the old Infirmary site, replacing two older units and aiding improved patient care.”

Carrying out construction over the next two years will be Farran Heron Joint Venture (FHJV), who built Mersey Care’s award-winning hospital at Clock View in Walton, which opened in March 2015. Commercial Director at FHJV Noel Mullan said:

“Farran Heron Joint Venture aim to have a positive impact on the local community by providing job opportunities and promoting careers in construction with neighbouring schools and colleges. We look forward to working closely with our health partners and the local community while delivering the scheme.”

The construction team are now working closely with Sefton Council to ensure safe access arrangements are put in place before heavy site equipment is moved on site.

First port of call to stop smoking

Smokefree Sefton’s partnership with Peel Ports to improve staff health and wellbeing is proving to be a success.

Many staff members work shifts including nights so Smokefree Sefton, managed by Solutions4Health and a partner of Living Well Sefton, have brought their support to the Bootle and Seaforth docks on board their new Wellness on Wheels (WoW) bus.

Colette Kearney, team leader, explained:

“We contacted Peel Ports because we realised it was difficult for workers to access our stop smoking clinics. Using the WoW bus means we can go to them instead. It has been well received with both men and women coming to see us for support in quitting smoking. Many of them have not accessed our service before.”

Steve, a Living Well Sefton mentor with the May Logan Centre, also hitches a ride to offer blood pressure checks. As a result of this collaboration, one woman has successfully stopped smoking and the blood pressure check indicated it was high so the team signposted her to her GP who changed her medication accordingly. The team also identified a man with high blood pressure who sought advice from his GP.

The team from Smokefree Sefton, which is commissioned by Sefton Council Public Health, can visit your workplace or community venue with their Wellness on Wheels bus. To find out more details contact Colette on 0300 100 1000, and for how the other Living Well Sefton partners can support you, visit: www.livingwellsefton.org.uk

Help yours-elf to stay well this winter  

 

THE festive season is now upon us and your local NHS in Sefton is offering residents advice on how to stay well this winter and avoid those nasty winter illnesses.

Winter is an exciting time for many, but this time of the year can pose problems for our health and wellbeing, especially for people with a long-term condition and those people aged over-65. Cold and wet weather, ice, snow and windy conditions all play their part in making existing health conditions worst and making people vulnerable to picking up winter illnesses such as colds, sore throats, asthma, norovirus and most commonly the flu.

Help is at hand though, by being prepared, thinking carefully and knowing how to examine your options in Sefton.

Dr Andy Mimnagh, chair of NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group, said:

“Everyone wants to enjoy themselves at this time of the year, but a winter bug can dampen any spirits.

“The best advice that I can offer is to be prepared, if you are entitled to a free flu vaccination then make sure you get it, visit your pharmacist to ensure that you have the right at home medication, order your repeat prescriptions using Patient Access well before the bank holiday rush and make sure that you have plenty of food stocked up at home, just in case we are visited by some nasty weather.

“It’s also really important to make sure that we look out for not only family and friends, but also for any elderly neighbours as well, those who may struggle to get out of the house this time of the year, to ensure that they have everything that they need.

“If you are unlucky and get poorly, knowing what to do and where to go for your specific medical need, will ensure that you have a speedy recovery.”

Dr Rob Caudwell, Southport GP and chair of NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said:

“It is vital to remember that the ambulance service and A&E should not be used as an alternative to your GP if your surgery is closed.

“If you or your children require medical assistance outside of normal surgery hours this bank holiday, patients in Southport and Formby have access to a wide range of alternative health services available including GP out-of-hours services and pharmacists who are qualified to offer advice and treat common, everyday illnesses quickly and conveniently.”

For up to the minute information on where to go if you fall ill during the bank holiday, visit your local CCG’s websites, as well as their Twitter and Facebook pages, or visit Examine Your Options: www.examineyouroptions.info

Feeling Unwell? – Examine Your Options

Across the region 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.

Pharmacy Services

Several pharmacies will be open throughout the Christmas bank holiday period and the best way to find out which pharmacy is open and when is to visit your CCG’s website and check out their Twitter and Facebook pages for on the day updates.

Your local pharmacy can offer free, confidential and expert advice on a range of health issues. They can also help you to self-care and prepare for many common winter illnesses and offer advice on which medicines to keep in stock at home.

Whilst all pharmacies provide advice and treatment for a range of minor illnesses and ailments, a number in Sefton offer Care at the Chemist, which ensures our most vulnerable patients who don’t routinely pay for their prescriptions have free and easy access to over the counter medicines they may need without the need to see a doctor.

NHS.UK

 You can find a wealth of trusted advice about hundreds of health conditions and details of GPs, pharmacies in your local area by visiting www.nhs.uk. This useful website also includes a handy 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. A GP will be available from 8.00am to 6.30pm weekdays (local GP practice times may vary). 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

Urgent Treatment/Walk-in centres

 

Litherland Walk in Centre is open 8am – 8pm every day including Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. No matter where you live in Sefton you can simply drop in – there is no need for an appointment and all ages can get treatment here. The service treats minor illnesses and injuries that do not need a visit to accident and emergency (A&E). Remember A&E is for serious and life threatening illnesses or injuries. 

Litherland walk in centre is based in Litherland Town Hall, Hatton Hill Rd, L21 9JN. Call 0151 475 4667.

Patient Access

Manage your repeat prescriptions and make GP appointments from the comfort of your own home, without having to venture outside, by using the new FREE Patient Access website and smartphone app. Simply search for ‘Patient Access’ in the app store.

Remember though, if using Patient Access for the very first time, you will first have to contact your GP practice so that you can register to use the app.

Sefton Council dedicated to tackling obesity

Sefton Council has signed a declaration to show its dedication to promoting healthy weight across the borough through improved food and drink provision.

 The declaration shows a commitment to reducing overweight and obesity in the borough by helping residents to make healthier choices.

 Developed by North West based Health Equalities Group’s Food Active project, the healthy weight declaration was first adopted by Blackpool Council in 2016 where it has been shown to have made a positive impact on policy at local authority level.

 Overweight and obesity in Sefton is currently above the national average with figures from 2013 to 2015 estimating that 69.7% of Sefton adults are overweight or obese.

 Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said:

“Obesity is a huge problem for us in Sefton. 35.1% of children in the borough are overweight or obese by the time they start secondary school.

 “We will be working with all departments to ensure healthy weight is included in all policies, strategies and actions and I’m really pleased that the council has taken this positive step in tackling this.”

 As part of the declaration, Sefton Council will be reviewing the catering and vending options in council leisure centres to ensure the promotion and availability of more healthy items.

 The Council has also recently adopted planning guidance in an effort to restrict the opening of new hot food takeaways, specifically in the areas around secondary schools and further education centres. 

 Robin Ireland, Director of Research at Food Active (Honorary) and the lead for this project, said:

“Congratulations to Sefton Council for taking this stand.

 “We all know how difficult it is to make the right choices when we are surrounded by unhealthy food, the wrong advertising messages and when sugary drinks are cheaper than water.

 “I am delighted that Sefton Council is doing everything they can to help their residents, workers and pupils eat healthier. I hope other councils will follow Sefton’s example.”

 

Involving you in the development of health services

Sefton residents are being invited to share their thoughts and ideas on how health commissioners in the borough could better involve them in their local NHS.

There are a number of ways that people can currently find out more about the work of NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS South Sefton CCG or get involved in what they do. This includes taking part in surveys, coming along to their governing body meetings, or directly contacting the CCGs with their queries and questions via email, website, phone or post.

Gill Brown, lay representative for patient and public engagement of NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said:

“We greatly value the views of our residents and their feedback helps to shape our work. So it’s important that as many people as possible have the opportunity to give their views when we are asking about health issues that matter to them most.”

Both CCGs hold regular public events, called ‘Big Chats’, where residents are asked for their views and experiences to help shape the health commissioners’ latest work. However, the CCGs understand that different people will prefer different ways to feedback their experiences of local health services, or to get involved in what they do.

Graham Bayliss, lay representative for patient and public engagement of NHS South Sefton CCG, said:

“There is always more we can do to get people involved in our work and new and different ways like social media that we can use to do this. We want to hear from residents about how they would like us to involve them and we’re inviting people to tell us how we can best do this by taking part in our survey.”

Sefton residents are asked to complete a short online survey about the ways they would like the CCGs to update them or involve them in their work. Feedback will help the CCGs to look at new and different ways to involve and inform their residents in the future.

Anyone with an interest in local health is invited to take part in the questionnaire, which can be found on each CCG website, along with short films highlighting the views of Big Chat attendees and how they think the CCGs could improve how the involve people in the work of the local NHS.

http://www.southportandformbyccg.nhs.uk/get-involved/current-exercises/tell-us-how-we-can-involve-you-in-our-work/

http://www.southseftonccg.nhs.uk/get-involved/current-exercises/tell-us-how-we-can-involve-you-in-our-work/

Examples of how the CCGs have used people’s feedback to shape health services and strategies can also be found on their websites.

 

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