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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.

 

Chance to take part in health survey

Sefton Councils’s Public Health team is working in partnership with Healthwatch Sefton to encourage as many Sefton residents as possible to complete a survey as part of the NHS Health Check programme.

This is a national programme which aims to check for early signs of heart disease, stroke, kidney damage, Type 2 diabetes or dementia.

The survey data will help to improve the programme and so Sefton’s Public Health team want to hear from local people to evaluate Sefton’s NHS health checks.

Already many people have submitted their comments via the online survey but there is still time to register yours. Click on this link to take you to the survey which closes at the end of November:
https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/SeftonHealthCheck

If you have any queries about the survey then please contact the Healthwatch Sefton team on 0800 206 1304 / 0151 920 0726 ext 214 or email: info@healthwatchsefton.co.uk

 

Dementia service users turn back time at vintage music afternoon

A specialist Southport day service for Sefton residents with dementia turned back the clock this week and entertained clients with a musical variety afternoon.

Tuneful memories from the last half century and beyond were on offer at Brookdale Resource Centre in Ainsdale which is run by the borough’s leading adult social care provider, New Directions.

Stars of the show were the Tarleton-based Dolly Mops, a 12-strong group of retired singers and dancers who soon had the Brookdale service users singing along to their varied repertoire.

This ranged from songs from shows like Oklahoma, and country and western classics, to hits made famous by Elvis Presley and Liza Minnelli in Cabaret.

Meanwhile, as the concert was staged on Halloween, staff were attired in suitably spooky fancy dress, and items on the afternoon tea menu included edible spider cakes and blood-red beverages.

Brookdale Resource Centre’s day service enables the carers of Sefton residents with advanced dementia to have an important respite break.

Service users enjoy a wide range of activities including arts and crafts, sensory stimulation and music and reminiscence therapies.

Brookdale Manager, Salwa Moustafa, commented:

“This was a really lovely event and we’ve had some excellent feedback from everyone who attended.

“The Dolly Mops put on a terrific show, with a wide-ranging programme and frequent costume changes, which ensured there was something to suit all musical tastes during the course of the afternoon.”

New Directions was established in Sefton in 2007 as the first local authority social care trading company in the country.

Ten years on, the organisation remains at the forefront of the local care sector, with a team of more than 300 staff caring for older Sefton residents, or people with disabilities or mental health support needs.

For more information about the services offered by New Directions, or to find out about joining the team, ring 0151 934 3726 or visit www.ndirections.co.uk.

Health experts encourage residents to talk to their pharmacists

Health experts in Sefton are reminding residents to ask their pharmacist about the range of services available in local chemists during November, and beyond.

NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS South Sefton CCG are supporting ‘Ask Your Pharmacist’ week, which highlights the range of services and support that is available to people from their local chemist.

Ask Your Pharmacist complements the national Stay Well This Winter campaign, encouraging people to look after themselves during the winter months – reminding them to see a pharmacist if they need advice on managing cough or cold symptoms.

Often, people make unnecessary trips to the GP or even A&E, when their neighbourhood chemist could help instead.

In recent years, pharmacists have expanded their role, and now provide a wide range of clinical and public health services, within easy reach of the people who need them most. However, whilst most people go first to their chemist for medicines and medicines advice, many don’t know about the range of other healthcare services on offer in chemists.

Sarah Halpin, a pharmacist at Alexander’s Pharmacy in Waterloo, said:

“Your local pharmacist is often the best place to go when you have a concern or question about a minor ailment. We can advise you on a number of conditions including aches and pains, sore throats, coughs, colds, flu, earache, cystitis, skin rashes and more.

“Your local pharmacy can help you look after your own and your family’s health by offering advice on healthy eating, physical activity, losing weight and stopping smoking.

“The best part about seeking advice from your pharmacist is that you don’t need to book an appointment, and many pharmacies are open longer hours than some GP surgeries.”

Thousands of children enjoy hot meals thanks to Sefton’s Access to Food scheme

Sefton Council have once again given food for thought at its annual Children’s Access to Food Programme, supplying nearly four thousand hot meals to those in need.

The scheme, which is in its second year, helps to support families across Sefton who are most in need of help and hot meals, allowing them to end a reliance on school meals to help nourish their children.

3981 meals were served across Sefton during a six week period.

Councillor Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing said:

“We had feedback from one mum who said that without this service, she would have had to miss paying bills to accommodate the extra cost of feeding her children during the 6 week period

“During the scheme we also saw a definite reduction in families requesting food vouchers for the food bank at one Centre because they were able to access free meals.

“The huge increase on last year shows that there is a need for schemes such as the Access To Food Programme and we are delighted that we have been able to help and support those families that are most in need within our communities.”

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