Breathe Easy this winter - join the #Scarfie campaign

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East Tilbury Village Self care week

Health professionals across mid and south Essex are encouraging people with respiratory conditions to stay well this winter by joining in with a new campaign #Scarfie launching this winter.

#Scarfie hopes to encourage people with Asthma, COPD and other respiratory illnesses to wear a scarf this winter to ease their breathing and keep well.

Dr Vickram Bhat, local GP and Planned and Unplanned Care lead for Thurrock CCG said: “By wearing a scarf, people warm up their breath before it goes into their lungs and can help to ease any respiratory conditions from getting worse in the colder weather.

“843 people attended A&E due to respiratory problems and of these 220 people were ambulanced to hospital last winter. This simple tip could help many people stay well this winter.”

9,155 people living in Thurrock have a recorded diagnosis of Asthma and 3,270 with a recorded diagnosis of COPD.

Outcome of Consultation on Items Which Should Not Be Routinely Prescribed

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NHS England has today (30/11/17) agreed plans to save hundreds of millions of pounds each year by recommending low value treatments, including fish oil, herbal remedies and homeopathy no longer be provided on the NHS, and launching a consultation on curbs to prescriptions for some ‘over the counter’ products such as paracetamol.

GPs issued 1.1 billion prescription items at a cost of £9.2 billion in 2015/16. The vast majority were appropriate but many were for medicines, products or treatments that do not require a prescription and can be purchased over the counter from pharmacies, supermarkets, petrol stations, corner shops or other retailers in some cases at a much lower cost than the price paid by the NHS.

The NHS could save around £190 million a year by cutting such prescriptions for minor, short-term conditions, many of which will cure themselves or cause no long term effect on health.

Over the counter products currently prescribed include cough mixture and cold treatments, eye drops, laxatives and sun cream lotions. A detailed follow-up consultation on an initial list of conditions will be launched in the New Year.

This will also free up millions of GP appointments that are currently taken up with prescribing these medicines.

CCGs in mid and south Essex launch public consultation

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The five clinical commission groups in mid and south Essex have launched a formal public consultation on outline plans for the future of health and care services.

The proposals are a result of detailed work undertaken by clinical teams across health and care organisations to improve the services provided to the 1.2 million people living in mid and south Essex.

The Joint Committee of the CCGs yesterday gave approval to begin consultation on proposals which include:

Making improvements in A&E at all three hospitals with the development of new assessment and treatment centres alongside each A&E. All three A&Es will be led by a consultant, open 24 hours a day and will receive “blue light” ambulances.

Develop a new specialist stroke centre which would provide the highest dependency and intensive care for people in the first 72 hours following a stroke alongside rapid access to diagnostics and specialist interventions. This would be in addition to the existing stroke care units at all three hospitals which would remain in place.

CCGs in mid and south Essex to decide on consultation

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The Joint Committee of the five clinical commissioning groups are set to consider proposals for public consultation at the end of this month on the future of health and care services across mid and south Essex.

These proposals are a result of detailed work undertaken by clinical teams across health and care organisations to improve the services provided to the 1.2 million people living in mid and south Essex.

A detailed pre-consultation business case and a plan for a period of public consultation will be considered and have been published in draft (will be available at the follwoing web address shortly: http://bit.ly/2mUdsKq). These will be discussed at a meeting to be held on the 29th November 2017 in the Marconi Suite, Civic Centre, Duke Street, Chelmsford at 3pm.

The Joint Committee will be asked to give approval to commence consultation on these proposals, which include:

  • Improvements in A&E at all three hospitals with the development of four new assessment and treatment centres alongside each A&E. All three A&Es will be led by a consultant, open 24 hours a day and will receive “blue light” ambulances. They will be able to treat the majority of cases. It is estimated that the number of patients that would need to transfer from a local A&E to a specialist team in another hospital could be around 14 patients a day.
  • A new “hyper acute stroke unit” close to the existing cardiothoracic centre in Basildon, which specialises in treatments for serious heart and lung problems. The new unit would provide the highest dependency and intensive care for people that have had a stroke in the first 72 hours following a stroke. This would be in addition to the existing stroke care units at all three hospitals which would remain in place.
  • Some specialist inpatient care being brought together in one place, where there is existing expertise and to allow for extended hours, seven day a week consultant and specialist cover for these services. This is based clinical evidence that this would improve care and chances of a making a good recovery. Examples include gynaecological surgery at Southend Hospital, urological surgery at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford and surgery for arteries and veins at Basildon Hospital.
  • Some planned operations being done separately from emergency cases. Some complex operations that need a few days hospital stay could be performed in Southend Hospital for people in south Essex and Braintree Community Hospital for people in mid Essex.
  • Move community services closer to where people live. For example in Thurrock the proposals outline how services currently provided at Orsett Hospital could be provided in four new “integrated medical centres” and existing community centres in Basildon and Brentwood. Once this has happened it will be possible to close Orsett Hospital which is difficult to access by public transport and needs significant investment to bring up to modern standard.

Thurrock community wraps up for Self Care Week

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self care week 2017

Organisations including Thurrock Council, Thurrock CCG and Thurrock CVS, St Margaret’s Church in Stanford le Hope and Thurrock’s Community Hub in Chadwell have got together to wrap local areas across Thurrock for Self Care Week.

Groups were invited to knit or bring scarves to wrap around their nose and mouth to keep cold air out and keep warm. Self Care Week runs from 13-19th November and was set up to help empower people to find ways of keeping themselves healthy and warm this winter.

Jane Foster-Taylor, Chief Nurse for Thurrock Clinical Commissioning Group said:
“This is a fun way of getting people together to raise awareness of how we can all help ourselves to stay well this winter. We are bringing the community together for a simple message.”

This Thursday 16 November at 4pm, Thurrock Council staff, CCG Staff, Thurrock CVS, Healthwatch and students from South Essex College will all join together to wrap around the council building in Grays.

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