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Reminder to have your say on Sefton health policies review

Sefton residents have a month left to share their views on a number of local health policies that aim to make sure NHS resources are used on the most effective treatments for patients.

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG are working together with Halton, Liverpool, St Helens and Warrington CCGs to review a group of policies for procedures and treatments that are known as Criteria Based Clinical Treatments (CBCT).  These are routine procedures that are known to have medical benefit only in very specific situations, or for a small number of people.

This is the third phase of the review, which aims to keep NHS care up to date with the latest national clinical guidelines, methods and technology, whilst also making the best use of NHS resources.

The policies that Sefton residents are being asked to provide views on in this latest phase are:

  • Continuous glucose monitoring systems
  • Cough assist devices
  • Insulin pumps
  • Secondary care administered peripheral joint injections
  • Surgery for prostatism or lower urinary tract infections
  • Transanal irrigation

At the same time, the CCGs are letting people know about updates to their policy for Botulinum toxin treatments, bringing it in line with national guidance from NICE, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and the Pan Mersey Area Prescribing Committee.

Dr Rob Caudwell, local GP and chair of NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “It is right that we regularly review the services we commission to ensure that we’re providing the most effective treatments that make the best use of our limited NHS resources.”

Dr Craig Gillespie, local GP and chair of NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “This review of policies is about looking at the latest guidelines, treatments, methods and technologies and where there is very little or no evidence of effectiveness, there is no benefit in offering them to patients.

Craig added: “Any procedure comes with risk, so it’s important patients are offered those with the maximum clinical or functional benefit, not for cosmetic or psychological reasons. As clinicians we will explore other, more suitable treatments for patients with these types of needs.”

The information gathered will be used to help develop new or revised polices.

No final decisions have been made at this stage and we are asking as many people as possible to share their views by completing a survey before 7 July. This feedback is really important and will help shape local NHS policies for the future.  Patients who might not be eligible for treatment will still be able to apply through an Individual Funding Request (IFR) where appropriate.

More details on proposed changes to the policies being reviewed along with a survey, open until 7 July 2019, can be found on each CCG’s website or or by emailing or calling 01782 872 506.

Sefton looks out for best of friends as special year reaches a big milestone

National Best Friends Day (June 8), marks the halfway point in Sefton’s Year of Friendship, a perfect time for Sefton Council to look back on the year so far and look ahead to the rest of what promises to be an exciting 2019.

Throughout the Year of Friendship Sefton Council is dedicated to tackling loneliness and social isolation of local residents by making them aware of the many groups and activities on offer throughout the borough.

So far, the campaign has shone a light on specialist groups and organisations such as Sefton Carers Centre and the Life After Cancer group; discovered the power of companionship through pet ownership, met a very special centenarian leading a very active life and cheered on an inclusive football team making great strides for disabled young people.

Sefton communities, voluntary sector, charities and businesses have embraced the campaign, including on social media where over 270,000 people have seen the Year of Friendship, and over 6000 taking the opportunity to engage with the local authority.

Upcoming themes for the rest of the Year of Friendship include learning, diversity, food, children and young people and older people.

Cllr. Paulette Lappin, Cabinet Member – Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services said

“Best Friends Day is a chance for us all to celebrate the special friendships that we have, or those wonderful friends we have lost down the years.

“Social isolation and loneliness have a detrimental effect on all aspects of a person’s life. The Year of Friendship has not only gained exposure for local groups and services dealing with these issues, it has also given people who need them a chance to discover them.

“Running through the Year of Friendship is Sefton’s warm community spirit, with those small instances of kindness that make a world of difference coming to the fore. I really look forward to seeing what the rest of the campaign holds.”

To learn more about the Year of Friendship, enjoy the many uplifting stories of the year so far and discover the many befriending services in the borough, visit the MySefton website or follow Sefton Council on Twitter and Facebook

Sefton awards prove there are ‘No Limits’ for our children in care

Some of Sefton’s most vulnerable children and young people have been recognised for their outstanding achievements at the ‘No Limits’ awards ceremony.

 Social workers, teachers and mentors, nominate children and young people who are in the care of Sefton Council, for an award in recognition of their successes throughout the year.

 Now in its 19th year, the ‘No Limits’ awards predominately acknowledge a young person’s achievement in a learning environment, whether in school, further education or an alternative setting. 

 However, the awards are not based solely on academic progress as they can be won by showing improvement in attendance, personal development, skills and knowledge. Many of the children who have won awards have gone on to do some remarkable things in their lives. 

 Each year the event is attended by about 300 children and young people and more than 100 of our foster and kinship carers. Every child nominated is invited to the awards ceremony, with their guests, and all nominees receive a medal, vouchers and certificates in recognition of their hard work. 

 21-year-old Caitlyne is the winner of this year’s 1st prize. She came into foster care at 13 and has had such a positive experience that she has stayed put with her foster family.

 She is a dedicated, passionate and extremely hard-working student. She is about to complete a foundation degree in Children and Young People’s studies and has secured a place at the University of Central Lancaster starting in September. 

The judging panel said they are in no doubt that the future is bright for Caitlyne and any future employer will be lucky to have her.

 Cllr John Joseph Kelly, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said: “Every one of the young people at these awards fully deserves to be recognised for their determination, hard work and dedication. I’m delighted that we are supporting them to reach such achievements.

“Children in care and care leavers are the most vulnerable young people within our communities. The circumstances in which they are growing up in are more complex and they may not have the same family support as their peers. It is our responsibility to fulfil the traditional parenting role. We also need to be ambitious for them and support and encourage them to make a success of their adult life.”

All in a day’s work as Sefton Council Contact Centre reaches big milestone

From random queries about it being too hot in the shops, or rodents on the rampage stealing belongings, to the much-expected questions such as bin collections, it’s all in day’s work for Sefton Council’s Contact Centre who are celebrating their 15th birthday.

The Contact Centre is the first point of contact for Sefton residents and handle very difficult situations as well as the very varied weird, wonderful and rewarding enquiries that range from help with benefits to support with Council Tax payments, street cleaning, to social care enquiries and much more.

As the Contact Centre celebrates their 15th birthday, the team has been reflecting on successes and how much has changed in the ways in which residents and visitors communicate with the local authority.

Gone are the days of simply a phone call. The continued rise of digital communications now sees the small but extremely busy team at the contact centre answer many queries by email, webchat and social media messages.  In the last year alone, the team at the centre has answered over 425,000 calls, 2,500 webchats, 19,000 emails and 27,000 social media messages.

But one thing has not changed for the team over the last 15 years – they always put the customer at the heart of everything they do.

Cllr Paulette Lapin, Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services

“It’s said that you never have a second chance to make a first impression, which is so true for the fantastic staff in our contact centre, who have a very important role to play as a first point of contact and the eyes, ears and voice of Sefton Council.

“I wish them a big happy birthday and I look forward to watching the team evolve in line with the needs of our communities and how they want to communicate with us in the future.”

Lisa Conway, Contact Centre Manager said:

“Time has really flown since we established the service and it has been good to reflect on how far we have come, but also think of the challenges as we continue to adapt to the ever-changing needs of customers and the evolving digital landscape.

“When you speak to that helpful voice on the phone or on social media, you do not see the meticulous planning that takes place ahead of each day, week, month, year. Something as simple as a change in the weather or a bank holiday can influence the kinds of calls the team finds answers to. For instance, after bank holidays, it is normal to receive lots of social care enquiries as people worry about isolated loved ones.

“The team needs to be alert and flexible and I’m proud to be part of a dynamic team that gives a warm welcome to residents while resolving their issues. The role can be very challenging but also very rewarding – ultimately we are making a difference for residents no matter what their enquiry.”

Join the celebrations on social media and look out for some of the memories the Contact Centre are sharing on the Council’s Twitter feed throughout the rest of May.

If you have any queries for Sefton Council, you can visit the Sefton Council website, call 0345 140 0845 or visit Twitter @seftoncouncil or Facebook /onesefton

Exclusive Formby home wins top building and design award

An exclusive property in Formby has been named as the Best Individual New Home in the LABC North West Building Excellence Awards.

Firwood Hall in Formby took the honours at a prestigious awards ceremony held at the Emirates, Old Trafford in Manchester.

The LABC Building Excellence Awards showcase buildings and design teams that have faced complex technical or construction issues and building site constraints. The awards also celebrate innovative, smart solutions across the North West region of England.

Sefton Council’s Building Control team advised over compliance with the building regulations during construction of the property, which is owned by Mike McComb.

The contractors Creative Design & Build (North West) Ltd and the Project Architects RAL Architect Ltd were all also recognised.

Stuart Barnes, Sefton Council’s Head of Economic Growth and Housing, said: “This has been a long term, unique and complex project, and taken its time to reach delivery.

“During this period, there have been a number of design alterations, client led and technical, that have required a collaborative approach between all parties, including the Council’s Building Control team.

“The results of the ambition of the land owner and the quality of the design and execution have rightly been recognised, and the LABC award is a worthy accolade.”

Paul Everall CBE, Chief Executive at LABC, added: “These awards are different. They are about quality and standards. No other building awards look at how well buildings are put together from start to finish and the skills and competencies of those who design and construct them. We are very proud of everyone involved – they show the way ahead for the industry.”

Rob Anderson, from RAL Architects, said: “Delivering a home of this quality requires a collaborative effort between architect, builder and the local authority with all parties appreciating the end goal but, above all it requires a client with vision who is willing to put significant trust in the project team.

“RAL are extremely pleased with the end result and are delighted to have the efforts of all involved recognised with an LABC Building Excellence Award.”

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