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Reduce your risk of cervical cancer by getting screened

Cervical Cancer Prevention Week advertThis week Monday 1th to Sunday 23rd January is Cervical Cancer Prevention Week  and health leaders in Sefton want to help even more people protect themselves against cervical cancer.

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG are encouraging those eligible aged 25 to 64 to have screening to reduce their risk of developing cervical cancer. The test detects human papilloma virus (HPV) and signs of early abnormal cells.

Cervical screening is available to women and people with a cervix aged 25 to 64 in England.


Dr Debbie Harvey, Macmillan GP and primary care cancer lead for NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “It’s important you attend screening when you’re invited.

“Eligible people aged 25 to 49 are offered screening every three years and 50 to 64 year olds are invited every five years.

“Cervical Cancer Prevention Week is a great opportunity to talk about screening, understand the symptoms of cervical cancer, and to book that appointment you may have been putting off.”


Dr Graeme Allan, Macmillan GP and primary care cancer lead for NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “If you are worried about going for screening due to coronavirus, speak to your GP practice about your questions or concerns.

“Since the pandemic, all GP practices have put increased infection control measures in place, including the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

“You can request a female nurse or doctor, and we encourage you to discuss any concerns with our staff beforehand.

“Having cervical screening is one of the best ways to protect yourself from cervical cancer”

“If you have symptoms such as bleeding between periods, pain during or after sex, changes to vaginal discharge or unexplained lower back or pelvic pain, please contact your practice to have your symptoms assessed.

“Your GP practice is still here for you, so don’t wait to be invited for your next cervical screening test before getting your symptoms checked out.”

Your cervical screening test is quick and simple and it looks for the human papilloma virus (HPV). If positive for the virus, your sample will then be tested for early abnormal cells.


All eligible people who are registered with a GP as female automatically receive an invitation by mail.

Trans men do not receive invitations if registered as male with their GP but are still entitled to screening if they have a cervix. They just need to ask their GP practice for an appointment.

The best way to protect yourself from cervical cancer is by attending cervical screening when invited.

Find out more about cervical cancer and what the screening test involves. 

New service for Sefton Parents and Families with babies

Smiling woman and babyMersey Care has secured funding from Sefton Council for a 12-month pilot of the Building Attachments and Bonds Service (BABS) to enhance its early years support for children and families.

BABS is a new Parent Infant Mental Health Service in Sefton supporting vulnerable families while mum is pregnant and in the early weeks after the baby is born. It will offer specialist, therapeutic support to families in Sefton to help them build good bonds and attachment with their baby.

Important relationship

Consultant Clinical Psychologist and BABS Lead Dr Lisa Marsland Hall said: “In BABS we believe that relationships are everything and that the most important relationship is between parent and child. We need to support our vulnerable families in the community to build good bonds and attachment and invest well in the parent infant relationship.

“Most parents want to be the best possible parent they can be to their baby, but life is hard for many families and sadly things get in the way.  We want to support parents to separate out their own past parenting experience, issues and struggles from their relationship with their baby so they can be the parent they want to be to their baby.”

BABS offers therapy and support, for pregnant women, new parents and partners, who struggle with their emotional wellbeing, other vulnerabilities, and who have concerns about their bonding and relationship with their baby. Sessions may take place in the family home or in the local Family or Wellbeing Hubs in the community.

Increased risk

Professor Joe Rafferty CBE, Chief Executive at Mersey Care, said: “Adverse experiences in childhood are associated with an increased risk of health and social problems later.

“One in every two adults in England is thought to have suffered at least one adverse childhood experience. Early help will offer support to our families in Sefton to help them focus on staying healthy, happy and independent.”

Parent-infant bond

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “Providing this very early support to cement the parent-infant bond where it is needed can provide life-long benefits and opportunities, so I am delighted that Sefton Council has been able to support this service.”

More information about the new service can found via GPs, midwives, health visitors and any other multi-agency professional, who can all refer through to BABS.

In addition to the clinical support provided to families, specialist parent infant mental health training and consultation to multi-agency professionals locally is also provided.

Parents can call the service on 07787 277 524 or email

A Christmas wish for Sefton residents from Director of Public Health, Margaret Jones

Sefton residents have been wished a happy Christmas and new year by Director of Public Health, Margaret Jones, but with a clear n0te of caution:

“I want to wish all of our residents a very Merry Christmas and a happy festive period. I’d like to say a big thank you for all of the efforts you have made over the past two years, and continue to make to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect our families, friends and communities.

“Unfortunately, as we move towards 2022, we are facing a new variant of COVID-19 – the Omicron strain. The impacts of this variant are still far from fully understood, however we do know that we are seeing record numbers of national infections. We need to continue to do everything we can to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe throughout the festive period and beyond.

“It is important that people continue to access asymptomatic Lateral Flow Testing (LFT), stay at home and get tested if they develop symptoms of COVID-19, wear face coverings in public spaces, wash hands regularly, use tissues to catch sneezes and try to keep rooms well-ventilated when meeting people from outside your household. I also encourage everyone to get vaccinated, whichever dose is offered to you.

“Please have a lovely Christmas with friends and family, but above all, do so safely.”

Sefton’s social care plans for the future as new strategies approved

Sefton Council, along with NHS partners, is looking ahead and planning for the future as new strategies for Adult Social Care were approved.

The strategies set out an integrated approach to the delivery of Adult Social Care in Sefton with a model built around the needs of Sefton’s population and the recognition that care and support should be tailored to a person dependent on their needs and the life they choose to lead.


Care Homes

The Care Homes Strategy represents a shared commitment across the NHS and the Council to continue to support and develop the market with a strong focus on the provision of high quality services. The strategy is a statement of intent to continue to work closely together in the wake of the pandemic and improve outcomes and tailor support for care home residents.


Technology Enabled Care Solutions

The Technology Enabled Care Solutions Strategy gives us the opportunity to be innovative  and ambitious in how we plan to help all people to stay healthy and avoid complications that may lead to further health and social care needs. TECS can support independent living and  self-care and empowers our residents to own their own care.


Intermediate Care Strategy

The Intermediate Care Strategy takes an integrated approach, both in commissioning and provision of services to ensure the best outcomes for people in Sefton. This ensures that both the social care and healthcare needs of individuals are assessed and met within a holistic approach.


The three strategies together outline a future for adult health and social care services that are integrated and deliver outstanding care and support across our community and improving outcomes for the people of Sefton.


Cllr Paul Cummins, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care at Sefton Council said:

“I am thrilled the Health and Wellbeing Board have approved these three strategies which represents a clear statement of intent to working in a more integrated way to deliver safe, good quality and outcome focussed services to people in Sefton

“By capitalising  on  new  and  emerging  technology, we have the opportunity to provide a modern model of continuous, coordinated care centred on the individual, with professionals  acting in partnership with the person to improve their health and wellbeing and providing top quality care and support to lead the lives they choose.”  


Fiona Taylor, Chief Officer, NHS South Sefton and NHS Southport and Formby CCGs said:

“These strategies are ambitious and much needed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is essential that we work together more closely on health and social care and that we continue to support each other to deliver the best outcomes for the people of Sefton.

“We are pleased that the Health and Wellbeing Board approved our direction of travel as the future of health and social care in Sefton depends on all partners working closely and moving in the same direction to ensure we have a service built around the needs of Sefton’s population.”


The Health and Wellbeing board is made up of elected members and officers from a range of partners including police, fire, NHS, advocacy groups and the voluntary sector.

For more information on the most recent meeting, please visit our website


Bootle-based Christmas business spread festive sparkle with magical tree

Decorators for Christmas tree taking pride of place in Bootle Town Hall's foyer
Decorators for Christmas tree taking pride of place in Bootle Town Hall’s foyer

Bootle-based business, Decorators for Christmas, has spread festive sparkle and cheer to Sefton Council’s Bootle Town Hall with the loan of a professionally decorated Christmas tree.

The tree, which is taking pride of place in the foyer of Bootle Town Hall, has been loaned by the business as a special thank you to Council staff for their continued support throughout the pandemic.

Decorators for Christmas said: “We love Christmas and our passion for the festive season is reflected in our beautiful decorations which we design, manufacture and install. It’s been an absolute pleasure to share one of our stunning Christmas trees with the Council this year as a small thank you for everything they have done to support Sefton businesses over the past 18 months or so.”

The Council’s InvestSefton and Business Rates teams would normally have been delivering business growth and inward investment support while administering and collecting business rates. Instead the focus during the pandemic has been on supporting businesses financially, ensuring they could access important grant payments and other means of support as the health crisis continued.

Colleagues from different departments such as Tourism, Corporate Resources, Housing, Planning, Sefton@Work, Early Years and Adult Care have supported this vital stream of work to ensure that grants were issued to all eligible businesses.

Similarly, officers have helped businesses with practical support, issuing them with PPE, providing vital infrastructure for Covid-19 testing and Environmental Health colleagues have supported the re-opening of the retail, hospitality and personal care sectors.

To find out how InvestSefton can help your business contact 0151 934 3452 or email or visit

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