As we regularly receive NHS news bulletins for SE Essex, we will be putting all news items on two pages, the latest added item at the top of the first page, instead of creating separate pages for each news item. Simply scroll down to see the latter items
Health technology improves outcomes for care home residents
Care home residents in Southend are benefitting from new technology, supplied by the local NHS, that means care home staff can play a key role monitoring the health of residents to improve health outcomes and reduce avoidable and distressing trips to hospital.
The health technology has been commissioned by Southend Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as a pilot scheme, for a 12 month period. The scheme is currently running across eighteen residential care homes in Southend.
The health technology consists of a portable handheld device that connects to Bluebooth medical appliances, such as weighing scales, blood pressure monitors, oximeters and thermometers, it enables care home staff to record and monitor a resident’s key health indicators easily and more efficiently. If health data readings are outside of the usual parameters set for a particular resident, an alert will automatically be raised on the system. The findings will then be clinically triaged by an experienced team of nurses.
Care home staff are then advised on the best action to take. This enables healthcare professionals to intervene at a much earlier stage and it lowers the risk of them becoming so unwell, they require a hospital admission.
For example, if a reading shows an increase in a resident’s temperature it can indicate the start of an infection, but this health technology can provide a much earlier identification of potential health issues; this is particularly helpful for residents with dementia who may not be able to describe their symptoms clearly.
The health data collected for each resident can also be shared securely with other healthcare professionals involved in the residents’ care, such as the Out of Hours GP service or NHS 111. This is very useful should a resident fall ill during the night or over a weekend.
Due to the success of the pilot scheme Southend Clinical Commissioning Group is now looking at a future pilot for Skype between care homes and GP practices. This will support remote consultations by allowing GPs to make informed clinical decisions remotely, which should reduce the number of GP visits required each year.
Healthwatch Essex Takes Local Views To Heart of Westminster
On Monday 21st January 2019 representatives from Healthwatch Essex travelled to London to join forces with more than 100 fellow local Healthwatch organisations to raise the real life concerns of people using health and social care services with their local MPs.
Attended by parliamentarians and key decision makers from across the health and social care, the event provided an opportunity for us to speak about the work we have been doing to shape local services on behalf of Essex residents, including:
• Raising awareness of the challenges that patients, their families and hospital staff experience when planning their care at the end of life a four-
• Highlighting the attitudes of young people in Essex to body image, smoking, drug use and mental health following three years of engagement with 2000 young people in the country
• Highlighting the continuing need for high quality information and signposting delivered by Healthwatch Essex via their telephone line supporting the public
With local health and social care services going through rapid change, with the launch of the NHS Long Term Plan, it has never been more important for services to involve the people they serve in shaping the future of health and social care.
The good news is that Healthwatch is getting more people to come forward to share their views on the issues in their areas. When acted upon by commissioners, care providers and clinicians, people’s experiences and ideas are leading to safer, better quality care. In this way people are where they should be – at the centre of their service.
Dr David Sollis, Chief Executive of Healthwatch Essex, said: “It was a great opportunity to attend Parliament and highlight our hard work locally to parliamentarians. The efforts of our dedicated team of staff and volunteers at helping to influence the way health and social care services are delivered in Essex were praised by all we met, particularly by Healthwatch England.”
Held in the Houses of Parliament, the reception was hosted by national body Healthwatch England to mark the launch of its sixth annual report.
Public sector partners work together to support menopause in work place
Menopause is a natural condition that affects all women at some stage of their life, the symptoms of which are too often under recognised, undervalued and not taken seriously.
To support staff working locally in the NHS and at Southend-
Local GP and Governing Body member at NHS Southend CCG, Dr Kate Baruysa, said:
“Thanks to closer partnership working between the NHS and Southend-
Studies have shown that menopause symptoms can have a significant impact on work attendance and performance. It doesn’t help that women are often misdiagnosed with a mental health or other condition, as this also impacts on their work and this can sometimes be wrongly identified as a work performance issue when it is not.
I strongly believe that GPs should give their patients the time and the information they require to help them to make informed choices regarding their menopause and its management. There are now excellent guidelines available that will empower clinicians in the NHS with more knowledge and confidence enabling them to diagnose and manage menopause better.”
The employment rate for women in the UK has actually increased over the past few decades and so women now represent nearly half of the UK labour force. This means that many women will be affected by symptoms of their menopause in the daily course of their lives and often to the detriment of their work and their life in general.
It is likely that early diagnosis, more education and adjustments at work can act as a preventative measure for menopause related sickness. When it is managed
correctly, not only will it reduce absenteeism, it will also enable women to talk about their concerns with work colleagues or managers. Employers should be putting measures in place to provide support, in what is considered a significant physical change for women, in line with pregnancy, which has been supported in the work place for many years.
Issued by NHS Castle Point and Rochford CCG, NHS Southend CCG, October 2018
More GP appointments available at evenings and weekends
Local residents can now access more evening and weekend appointments with a GP, nurse or healthcare assistant. The new, improved service will see GP practices working together to offer patients appointments at more convenient times when they call their local practice.
Appointments are now available from 6:30pm -
To make an appointment, you can call your own GP practice during normal business hours.
These appointments are in addition to the usual GP surgery opening hours from 8am to 6.30pm. It means that when patients contact their doctor they will be offered appointments at an accessible time and day at surgeries where appointments are available, which may not always be patient’s usual practice.
Dr Kashif Siddiqui, Clinical Chair of NHS Castle Point and Rochford CCG, said: “We understand that people cannot always go to see their GP during standard working hours. Appointments may not be at your usual practice, but if you talk to your GP practice receptionist, they can help you find the right service and at a time that works best for you where possible.”
Local residents will see a GP or healthcare professional who may or may not be from the practice they are registered with. The GP or other professional will have access to your medical record to ensure that you receive the best possible care and support.
People can also dial 111 if they need medical help but are not in a life-