Riding to beat rare form of Parkinson’s disease

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Thurrock nurse and fellow cyclists prepare for a gruelling 250 mile bike ride in memory of father-in-law who died from a rare form of Parkinson’s disease.

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The riders will be raising money for the Multiple System Atrophy Trust by cycling the 250 miles from Padstow to Bath this September. Chris Jennions, one of the riders taking part, lost his father-in-law to the disease last year.

Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a rare form of Parkinson’s disease which can lead to loss of mobility and the ability to communicate. Unfortunately, there is no cure and the medication that can help relieve symptoms for people with Parkinson’s is less effective for people with MSA.

Claire Webber, a general practice nurse at Peartree Surgery in South Ockendon, said “I love to cycle, and try to bike to and from work at least three times a week. I am really looking forward to this West Country Ride it offers a great opportunity to raise funds and awareness of MSA and the Trust. This disease is gruelling and debilitating and I hope my Sister-in-law can take some comfort from the funds raised for the MSA Trust having lost her Dad to this disease last year. No sponsor is too little and I would appreciate any support, thank you”

The Multiple System Atrophy Trust is the UK’s leading charity supporting people affected by MSA. The organisation provides advice, information and support nationwide and funds medical research to find the cause and cure for MSA.

If you can spare a few pounds to sponsor the bikers and support the vital work of the MSA Trust, please click on the link below:

250-mile West Country Way fund raising ride for MSA 

New scheme to help keep dementia patients safe

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Essex Police have launched a new initiative to help find vulnerable people with dementia if they go missing.

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Developed in partnership with Health and Social Care organisations and Alzheimer’s Society, the scheme encourages carers to record useful information which can be used if a person with dementia goes missing.

Wandering and getting lost is common among people with dementia and can happen at any stage of the disease. They will often wonder with a purpose, for example, looking for old home addresses or places of work.

To help find a person in the event that they go missing, Essex Police have created a form which asks a number of useful questions that can aid in the search. Detailed and up-to-date information can help police make decisive and timely actions that can help locate a person quickly.

Waiting for your exams results getting you down?

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The exam period can be a stressful time and waiting for the results can cause feelings of stress, worry and anxiety but there are services available to help. 

So, you’ve done all the revision, completed the exams and now it’s a waiting game for the results. Sounds simple enough, but not knowing what to expect can be overwhelming and can leave you feeling anxious or worried, particularly as you start to plan your future.

If you are expecting GCSE or A-Level results soon, you might be concerned about the outcome and the impact this could have. While it’s perfectly normal to feel down sometimes, if you notice these feelings start to become worse, or they occur more frequently, it’s time to talk to someone. This could be a family member, friend or professional. Or if you don’t want to speak to someone face-to-face, there are plenty of opportunities available online to access the support and advice you need to feel better.

Start by checking out Big White Wall, a safe, anonymous, online community which gives you the opportunity to share your experiences with others who may be going through the same thing. Big White Wall lets you be yourself without being judged and will give you the confidence to take control and achieve your goals.

Free opportunity for public to test their blood pressure and health in Grays community

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People in Grays will be able to have a free blood pressure and general health check at Grays Baptist Church Hall and Thameside Library this August.

The checks will be done with support from College Health practices, who are offering healthcare professionals at:

  • Grays Baptist Church, Orsett Road, Grays - 14 August 10.30am – 1.30pm
  • Thameside Library, Orsett Rd, Grays RM17 5DX – 16 August 9.30am – 12.30pm

Cllr James Halden, Portfolio Holder for Health

“In our Annual Public Health Report* we found that there are many thousands of people undiagnosed with conditions like high blood pressure and other health and wellbeing problems.

“We want to work with health colleagues to find the missing thousands we know are undiagnosed in Thurrock.”

"People can come to the ‘pop-up’ clinic to get their blood pressure and general health checked. If the tests find anything wrong, patients will be referred to the local Blood Pressure Clinic or sent to their GP.”

Rahul Chaudhari, Head of Primary Care at NHS Thurrock CCG said:

“It is great to see these outreach clinics supported by College Health practices. Hypertension and heart problems, if undiagnosed can lead to many health challenges. Diagnosing people in the community is an innovative way to improve public health and capture people who do not normally go to their GP.”

Sharon Hogarth, Area Manager for College Health practices said:

“We know that for some people visiting the doctor is the last thing they want to do. But we are committed to providing the best possible service for people in Thurrock. Conditions like Hypertension (high blood pressure) and other underlying conditions can turn into more serious problems if people are not aware of them and are not getting adequate treatment. “These community sessions, which we hope will be the first of many, will provide an informal opportunity to the public to get a quick, painless and free health check.”

Further clinics will be announced during August and September.

*The estimated number of people with Hypertension (High Blood Pressure) in Thurrock is 23,931 and a further 15,953 are undiagnosed

New for Thurrock, pharmacists in GP surgeries to help manage long-term health conditions

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Anesi Healthcare Ltd, a group of GP practices in Thurrock and Basildon, have been successful in gaining funding for a new NHS England scheme to recruit clinical pharmacists working in GP Practices.

The new initiative has seen over £100m investment across England to help alleviate pressure on GPs. The clinical pharmacists are highly trained experts in disease and medication that can work as part of the general practice team to provide specialist advice for patients, particularly the elderly and those with more than one health condition.

Denise Rabbette, Head of Medicines Optimisation at Thurrock Clinical Commissioning Group said;
“We are very pleased to be able to improve access to healthcare through the use of clinical pharmacists. Recruitment for the pharmacists is starting imminently and we hope to have the scheme up and running by September. We have had issues in Thurrock with recruiting nurses and GPs, so we had to think about other ways to support patients’ healthcare needs.

“By taking responsibility for patients with chronic diseases, clinical pharmacists can enable GPs to focus on more complex patients. It is hoped this will prevent people who can’t get appointments, from going to A&E departments. The pharmacists will work closely with community and hospital pharmacists to provide joined-up NHS pharmacy services for patients.”

Russell Vine, CEO Anesi Healthcare Ltd said:
“Winning the bid for funding means we can really start to make radical improvements in the service our practices can offer to patients. We are working to quickly recruit three clinical pharmacists from our known talent pool and hope to have them available as soon as possible. Whilst this bid covers Thurrock – we look to do the same in Basildon and Brentwood CCG area soon.”

Anesi Healthcare Ltd, is owned by a Federation of GP practices in Thurrock and Basildon, the Thurrock practices who will initially benefit from the first clinical pharmacists, include:

  • Hassengate Medical Centre
  • Sai Medical Centre
  • Dr Yadava Practice
  • Dr T Abela and Partners
  • College Health at Corringham Health Centre
  • The Surgery, Orsett

In addition to working with patients with long-term health conditions, clinical pharmacists may also carry out the following roles:

  • Supporting people with their medicines review
  • Providing support to vulnerable patients in reviewing their treatment
  • Monitoring adherence to medication
  • Educating patients on appropriate antibiotic use
  • Improving medicine safety by encouraging patients to report side effects/benefits of medications.

The funding is for three years initially with funding on a sliding scale. The CCG hopes that more practices across Thurrock will be keen to bid for funding to have a pharmacist to support their patients.

Every year in the Basildon and Thurrock areas £2.5 million is spent on medication that is never used. Click here to find out more about our campaign to cut down on waste

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