Treatment for common conditions at pharmacies
From today (31st January 2024), patients in England will be able to get treatment for seven common conditions at their high street pharmacy without needing to see a GP.
Highly trained pharmacists will be able to assess and treat patients without the need for a GP appointment or prescription for common conditions:
- sore throat
- infected insect bite
- uncomplicated urinary tract infections in women (under the age of 65)
Over 90% of community pharmacies in England (10,265 in total) will be offering this service. It is hoped this will ease the pressure on GP practices and provide quicker and more convient treament for patients experiencing non-urgent health concerns.
To find your nearest pharmacy, you can use the NHS 'find a pharmacy' feature. Please be aware that not all pharmacies will be able to provide treament for these conditions.
Measles: Are you protected?
Across the UK, measles is on the rise.
Measles is highly contagious and can lead to complications such as ear infections, pneumonia, and inflammation of the brain which require hospitalisation and on rare occasions can lead to long term disability or death.
Spending 15 minutes or more in direct contact with someone infected with measles is enough to catch the infection. People whose immunity is compromised, pregnant women and unvaccinated children are at increased risk of severe disease.
Measles symptoms to be aware of include:
- high fever
- sore, red, watery eyes
- aching and feeling generally unwell
- a blotchy red brown rash, which usually appears after the initial symptoms.
Anyone with symptoms that could be measles is advised to stay at home and phone their GP or NHS 111 for advice, rather than visiting the surgery or A&E. This is because measles spreads very quickly and easily and so it is important to try and prevent the illness spreading further.
People who have symptoms should also especially try to stay away from areas where you could come into contact with vulnerable people such as schools, nurseries or care homes.
The increase in measles cases is largely due to the decrease in children being vaccinated against the disease.
The free MMR vaccine is a safe and effective way of protecting against measles, as well as mumps and rubella. Since the introduction of the measles vaccine in 1968 it is estimated that 20 million measles cases and 4,500 deaths have been prevented in the UK.
Anyone who is unsure if their child is up to date with all their routine vaccinations should check their child’s Red Book (personal child health record) in the first instance.
If you are still not sure, or if you need to bring your child up to date with their vaccines, contact your GP practice to check and book an appointment.
To find out more about childhood vaccinations, please visit the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/nhs-vaccinations-and-when-to-have-them/
We are delighted to be supporting Travel Well, the new initiative aiming to get city residents walking and cycling more.
With an active lifestyle having a massive impact on both mental and physical wellbeing, Nottingham City Council’s Travel Well project aims to help support people to build activity into their daily lives for lasting healthy changes.
As part of a national trial, Nottingham is one of 11 areas where it has been identified that people switching to more active lifestyles can make a real difference. The trial will give healthcare professionals and social prescribers the ability to refer patients to services that promote walking, cycling and wheeling delivered within the community.
The aim is to support people to become more active, manage mental and physical wellbeing, manage long-term health conditions or address social isolation.
The project will take place around Aspley, Beechdale, Bilborough, Bulwell, Sneinton, St Ann’s and Strelley.
Dr. Adele Cresswell's Retirement as Chief Operating Officer
It is with mixed emotions that we announce the retirement of Dr Adele Cresswell, Chief Operating Officer of Nottingham City General Practice Alliance (NCGPA). While we bid her farewell in her role, we also recognise and celebrate the significant impact she has had on NCGPA and City General Practice.
To ensure a smooth transition and continued success for NCGPA, the Board and executive team have established a recruitment committee. This committee will play a vital role in the selection process for Dr Cresswell's successor, and shaping the future vision of leadership at NCGPA.
During this transitional period, Dr Cresswell will be working through a notice period spanning several months. Dr Cresswell has been an invaluable member of NCGPA, contributing significantly to both the Alliance Board and as our Chief Operating Officer.
Her dedication and leadership have been instrumental in propelling NCGPA to the next stage in its development and growth. The organisation is undoubtedly in a better place today due to her unwavering commitment. Her hard work, passion, and the positive impact she leaves on our organisation and the broader community is appreciated by all.
NCGPA remains committed to providing excellent service to our staff and service users, and we are confident in the resilience of our organisation as we welcome new leadership.
Meadows Diabetes Health & Wellbeing Event - 16th November
Clifton and Meadows PCN are hosting a special Diabetes Health & Wellbeing Event on Thursday 16th November, from 12PM - 5PM at the Queens Walk Community Centre.
The day is a chance for people living with diabetes to get advice, guidance and health checks to help manage their conditions and get the most out of life.
There will be a variety of useful services being offered including:
- Blood glucose testing
- Height and weight monitoring
- Blood pressure checks
- Foot checks
It will be a fun, informative day and a great oppurtunity to meet new people in the community. There will even be free refreshments!
There will also be the oppurtunity to meet social prescribers and health and wellbeing coaches working in the city who will be able to provide you with ongoing advice and support.
Address: Queens Walk Community Centre The Meadows, Queens Walk, Nottingham, NG2 2D
Saluting Our Sisters: Celebrating Women of Colour for Black History Month
October is Black History Month, an annual and global event that celebrates the culture and contributions of Black people throughout history and how they have shaped the world.
This year's focus is 'Saluting our Sisters', celebrating the unsung contribution of Black women throughout history. Elizabeth Andam, Clinical Pharmacist for PCN4 at NCGPA, shares her thoughts on what this month means to her and why it is important to continue to breaking down barriers for Black women working in healthcare:
What does Black History Month mean to you and why is it important?
I have always found Black History Month exciting as it presents opportunities to learn about Black culture and people who have made, or are making, remarkable contributions to society and celebrate them.
It’s a time where we get to shine a spotlight on those minorities who do not necessarily always get the recognition and honour they deserve for their outstanding contributions to humanity/society.
Black History Month is also a time for reflection on the positive impact and influence Black people have made, motivating us to strive for excellence and make positive contributions in all spheres of life.
How can black women be supported more in the workplace?
Black women can be supported in the workplace by being given opportunities for further training and development to upskill and progress in their chosen career paths.
They should also be equally offered careers at the higher levels of decision making so they can serve as role models for others to aspire to reach leadership positions. Where possible, they should be offered mentorship by more senior leaders to help them with career progression and experience.
Black women also need allies in the workplace to combat microaggressions, and in some cases prejudice or unfair treatment, and help them feel included, respected, and valued. Organisations can make more effort to incorporate inclusive practice in the workplace.
Are the thoughts, feelings and experiences of black women represented in decision making in healthcare?
I have only occasionally come across black women in top leadership positions or positions where they can influence decision making in the healthcare sector. As such, I don’t feel we are adequately represented and therefore our thoughts, feelings and experiences are often not considered or accounted for.
I remain hopeful though. The numbers of black women in leadership positions on healthcare boards is slowly increasing. It would be great to see more people who look like me at those levels to inspire and mentor me.
As I also see a need for this for the next generation, I do my best to mentor other young black women whilst equally striving to reach those leadership levels myself so I can inspire others to do even better.
Are there any individuals, or programmes, that inspire you in your work?
There are many women of colour who inspire me in my work.
Quite recently I came across news of a black Intensive Care Nurse called Ginny Wanjiro who took combs and moisturiser for Afro-Caribbean patients the hospital she works in as she recognised a need for these basic tools to help care for their skin types and various hair texture types. From experience she realised that due to a lack of these tools, some patients were having to have their hair cut off as it became matted during long hospital stays and one can only imagine the added distress this would have caused patients.
Ginny created awareness for the need of inclusivity in the way patients are catered to in hospital and has since had these tools added onto the Trust catalogue and trained staff on how to comb Afro-Caribbean hair.
I found this inspiring because something so subtle has created a huge awareness and highlighted issues in our healthcare provisions and instigated the drive to seek solutions as to how best we can cater for the diverse communities we serve. A simple change like this also has quite a big impact on patient experiences as well as their health outcomes.
This has inspired me that no change is too little and has motivated me to be more sensitive to recognising gaps in healthcare provision and involve myself by contributing to the solutions that bring about positive change.
Honouring Precious Angels: Baby Loss Awareness Week 2023 in Nottingham
From the 9th - 15th October, we are supporting the national Baby Loss Awareness Week campaign. This awareness campaign takes place annually to remember babies gone too soon and support families who have experienced the devastating loss of a baby, at any stage.
This week holds a special place in the hearts of many, thanks to the tireless efforts of organisations like local charity Forever Stars, Sands, and Tommy's. The collective efforts of these organisations, combined with the compassion and strength of the Nottingham community, provide solace, hope, and a promise that those who have experienced baby loss will not be alone. The support available is a testament to the power of community and the resilience of the human spirit, reminding us that even in the darkest moments, there is hope and healing.
If you or someone you know is experiencing the pain of baby-loss, these amazing organisations can offer vital advice, care, and support in the darkest of times:
- Forever Stars: A Beacon of Hope
Nottingham-based charity Forever Stars has been a beacon of hope for grieving families since it was set up. Founded by Richard and Michelle Daniels after the loss of their daughter, Emily, they offer invaluable support to parents and family members who have been affected by baby loss. Forever Stars provides a safe space for sharing experiences, offering practical advice, and advocating for improved care for those affected by baby loss.
- Sands: Supporting Grief and Healing
Sands, a national charity dedicated to supporting anyone affected by the death of a baby, plays an important role during Baby Loss Awareness Week. They offer local support groups, a helpline, and online resources to help families navigate the complex and painful journey they are on. Sands actively engage with healthcare professionals and conducts research to reduce the number of baby deaths in the UK, contributing to the broader mission of preventing future losses.
- Tommy's: Pioneering Research and Care
Tommy's is renowned for its pioneering research into the causes of baby loss and premature birth. They are committed to providing medical care to pregnant women and their babies. In Nottingham and across the UK, Tommy's works to fund vital research, train healthcare professionals, and provide expert information to parents, ensuring the best possible care for pregnant individuals and their babies.
Baby Loss Awareness Week 2023 sees lots of activities taking place across the city for families who have faced the tragic loss of a baby. Whether it’s through organised events, buildings being lit up pink and blue, the wave of light on 15th October at 7pm, online forums, or local support groups, there is a strong sense of understanding and coming together. Grieving families can connect with others who have walked similar paths, share their stories, and find solace in knowing they are not alone.
Introducing the Health & Wellbeing LIVE video podcast series!
We are delighted to present the first edition of our revamped video podcast series 'Health & Wellbeing LIVE'.
Presented by NCGPA GP Board Director Dr Andy Foster, this series involves fascinating discussions about a range of topics around healthcare in Nottingham city.
In this first episode, Andy sits down with the former Clinical Director of Nottingham City Place-Based Partnership, Dr Hugh Porter. They look back over Hugh's time working in range of positions shaping Nottingham city healthcare on the eve of his retirement.
New episodes of the series will be launched monthly. Subscribe to the PBP Youtube channel to be updated when a new episode goes live.
Stub It! this Stoptober
Smokers in Nottingham city are being urged to make a quit attempt this month as part of the Stoptober campaign from Nottingham City Place-Based Partnership and Stub it!
Nottingham has a particular smoking problem, with the numbers of smokers in the city much higher than the national average. This has led to smoking being the largest single cause of death and ill-health in the city.
Figures show that over 20% of adults in Nottingham city smoke, with over 55 thousand smokers in the city. It is estimated that each year smoking costs the city £137million - this includes £115M in lost productivity, £12M in healthcare costs and £6.8M in costs to social care.
In the current cost of living crisis, the cost of smoking can also hit struggling households hard. The cost of buying cigarettes, missing work due to ill-health, and the price of medication for smoking-related illness can drive families and individuals into even deeper financial issues. This is particular problem for areas in the city with high levels of depravation and poverty.
But help is available. The free Stub it! Stop Smoking Service provides an achievable and personalised journey for all Nottingham city residents. 99% of people completing the Stub it! programme would recommend to friends and family and felt well supported by advisors during their quit attempt.
Evidence shows that if a smoker can quit for 28 days, then they are five times more likely to quit for good. 40% of graduates from Stub it! go on to quit for good. Combining behavioural support and nicotine replacement products (including vapes), those enrolled on Stub it! will receive tailored support to improve their chances of quitting permanently.
The service now delivers to anybody aged 12 or over who lives in Nottingham city. Citizens can self-refer to the Stub it! service by calling 0115 8240583 (Option 2), sending an email to email@example.com, using the form on the NCGPA website, or speaking to the GP+ reception team (4pm and 8pm).
Celebrating South Asian Heritage with the Royal Pharmaceutical Society
As part of South Asian Heritage Month, the Royal Pharmacuetical Society held a special event on the 9th August in London. The 'Stories to Tell' event brought pharmacy professionals of South Asian backgrounds together to celebrate their work, discuss the challenges they've faced, and tell their stories.
We were delighted to see Ankish Patel, the Chief Pharmacist for NCGPA, speak at this prestigious event. He was honoured to be invited to speak and found the experience incredibly moving. Here are his thoughts on the event:
"Standing at the podium as I delivered the keynote speech at the South Asian Heritage Event at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society was a profoundly moving experience that stirred a mix of emotions within me. The room was filled with faces (including my own parents), representing a diverse tapestry of pharmacy professionals from students to those individuals that had paved the way for the rest of us, all gathered to share and learn from our experiences.
"I was able to share and reflect on moments that have both moulded me as individual and have influenced my community and my profession. As the speech ended, I was flooded with a sense of accomplishment, and a profound gratitude for the opportunity to contribute to a cause close to my heart. The conversations that followed were filled with stories, questions, and a shared sense of purpose. Bonds were formed, ideas exchanged, and dreams kindled.
"Looking back, I'm struck by how this experience not only deepened my connection to my heritage and profession but also reminded me of the power of storytelling and personal connection in inspiring change. The South Asian Heritage Pharmacy Event wasn't just an event; it was a chapter in my own journey of growth, reflection, and empowerment."
People of South Asian heritage make up a large section of our workforce at NCGPA and we are proud to celebrate their incredible contributions to our organisation and the NHS as whole. You can find out more about how our workers have been celebrating South Asian Hertiage Month here.
New NHS gambling service launches across the East Midlands
A free NHS service has been launched to offer specialist treatment and support to people in the East Midlands who are struggling with a gambling problem.
The East Midlands Gambling Harms Service, which is based in Derby, will provide specialist therapies, treatment and recovery to those affected by gambling addiction and gambling problems in Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire and Rutland.
The team providing the service will include clinical psychologists, therapists, mental health practitioners and psychiatrists as well as experts-by-experience – people who have recovered from a gambling addiction themselves.
Most support will be provided through virtual treatment programmes and group workshops. Further support and advice will be available to family members and carers, with the support of other agencies to help with problems such as mental health, debt management and housing.
The service is being run by Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Paul Sanger, East Midlands Gambling Harms Service Manager, said: “The team are pleased to launch this service, to provide support and treatment to those individuals who are experiencing problems with gambling problems across the East Midlands region.
“We are excited to have the opportunity to work as one of a number of gambling services now in operation across the country in line with the NHS Long Term Plan.
“Our aim is to equip those in need of help with the tools to overcome the desire to gamble, and to support those close to someone who is experiencing problems with gambling. We are confident that this service will provide better access to help in the region.”
Chris Kershaw, a recovering compulsive gambler who has supported the launch of the East Midlands Gambling Harms Service, said: “Problem gambling can have extremely detrimental effects on people’s physical and mental health, relationships and work, as well as causing financial issues such as debt.
“For me, my 24/7 compulsive gambling led to a breakdown and suicide attempt in early February 2006. I lost everything – not just money but also many relationships, which had a massive impact on my mental health.
“This service is a vital resource for residents across the East Midlands, to help people make better life choices. The support available will help those struggling to lead better, more fulfilling lives – not only for themselves but also their often long-suffering loved ones.”
Any resident within the East Midlands wishing to access support from East Midlands Gambling Service can call 0300 013 2330 or visit www.eastmidlandsgambling.nhs.uk.
Celebrating Healthcare Workers of South Asian Heritage
As we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the NHS, we cannot do so with acknowledging the substantial contributions and dedication of South Asians and their expertise and cultural understanding in delivering healthcare services to the diverse population in the UK and overall functioning of the NHS.
South Asians make up a significant portion of the healthcare workforce in the NHS. Doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other healthcare professionals of South Asian origin have made substantial contributions to patient care and medical research. They have brought their expertise and cultural understanding to deliver healthcare services to diverse communities.
Kulvinder Hunjan, Head of IT and Centralised Services was one of a number of NCGPA colleagues who celebrated this milestone by attending the South Asian Heritage event held at the India Community Centre on the 20th July. Here are her thoughts on the event...
“The event was a heart-warming gathering of colleagues that came together to share their stories, journeys, and experiences within the NHS. Many guests spoke about their journey, or the journey of their parents, over from India and Pakistan to start a new life with very little money or personal belongings.
“With the current staffing issues facing the NHS, it has never been more important to recognise the contributions of the South Asian community as we will play a vital role in the service’s development over the next 75 years. Every one of us are so proud to be associated with the NHS and our contribution past, present, and future, is done from a place of love for the institution.”
We would like to thank South Asian colleagues past and present for their incredible skill, passion, and dedication to provide the best healthcare possible for patients. NCGPA, and the NHS as a whole, could not operate without their hard work.
Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Social Prescribing Conference
On Thursday 29th June, we held our first Social Prescribing Conference at Notts County Football Club. This event brought together link workers, community leaders, and other individuals key to helping the most vulnerable people in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.
The event was a fantastic opportunity for Social Prescribing Link Workers to come together and share their experiences of working in the city and across the county. With so much incredible work being done, it was a rare opportunity for the teams to celebrate their achievements, make new connections, and learn from the successes of others.
We were honoured to be joined by the Sheriff of Nottingham, Councillor Shuguftah Quddoos, who gave a moving speech about her personal experiences of how social prescribing link workers can impact lives at the start of the day. Her clear passion and admiration for this work was truly inspiring, especially given her influential role in the city.
As well as Cllr Quddoos, key individuals from a range of organisations presented to attendees:
- Ankish Patel, Head of PCN Workforce at Nottingham City GP Alliance (NCGPA), spoke about how social prescribing has changed over the past few years, and NCGPA’s vision for the future
- Bobby Lowen, Programme Director for Changing Futures, talked about helping those with severe multiple disadvantage (SMD)
- Simon Lavall, Advanced Customer Support Officer at the Department of Work & Pensions (DWP), discussed how the cost of living crisis is impacting the most vulnerable in society
The afternoon session was opened by Maria Willis, Head of Social Prescribing Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Integrated Care Board (ICB). Attendees were invited to take part in in a range of knowledge sharing workshops, depending on topics which would help them in their work, or were of particular interest to them. These included:
- GreenSpace Walk-Shop
- Young People's Social Prescribing
- Patients with Eyesight Impairments
- Artificial Intelligence in Social Prescribing
- Volunteering and Befriending "On Prescription"
There were also a couple of workshops conducted by NCGPA SMD Practitioner Martin Marcus for the whole group. These focused on minimum dataset delivery, and collaborative pathway planning for link workers.
The event was a huge success. It was great to see so many people making new connections and sharing the work they do with each other. Creating a community and a sense of being part of a wider team is vital for morale. We hope that attending link workers came away feeling supported and inspired by the work of others.
Thank you to everyone who attended, exhibited, and made it such an incredible day!
World Blood Donor Day: Why it Matters
This World Blood Donor Day (14th June), consider donating blood. It could save a life.
Donated blood is vital for treating patients with blood-affecting medical conditions such as anaemia, cancer, and other blood disorders, as well as those having surgery. This can be used for blood transfusion (healthy blood being directly put into the patient), or broken down into it's compenents (red blood cells, platelets, and plasma) for use.
To help everyone undergoing these treatments, we need more people donating their blood. There is a particular demand for donors from black backgrounds due to the demand for blood types more commonly found in people from black heritage. There is also high demand for donors with O negative, B negative, and A negative blood types.
If you want to donate, you can book an appointment with the Nottingham Blood Donor Centre. Their friendly staff will be able to support you through the process whether you have donated before or if it's your first time. For more information on how what you need to need to do to prepare for donation, you can use this handy guide: Preparing to give blood - NHS Blood Donation.
Beat The Heat: Staying Safe In The Hot Weather
While many people enjoy warmer summer weather, hot weather can cause some people to become unwell through overheating (becoming uncomfortably hot), dehydration, heat exhaustion and heatstroke:
- keep out of the sun at the hottest time of the day, between 11am and 3pm
- if you are going to do a physical activity (for example exercise or walking the dog), plan to do these during times of the day when it is cooler such as the morning or evening
- keep your home cool by closing windows and curtains in rooms that face the sun
- if you do go outside, cover up with suitable clothing such as an appropriate hat and sunglasses, seek shade and apply suncreen
- drink plenty of fluids and limit your alcohol intake
- check on family, friends and neighbours who may be at higher risk of becoming unwell, and if you are at higher risk, ask them to do the same for you
- know the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke and what to do if you or someone else has them
Heat exhaustion and heatstroke
Heat exhaustion occurs when the body overheats and cannot cool down. Heat exhaustion does not usually need emergency medical attention if you cool down within 30 minutes. If you do not take action to cool down, heat exhaustion can lead to heatstroke.
Common symptoms of heat exhaustion include:
- feeling faint
- muscle cramps
- feeling or being sick
- heavy sweating
- intense thirst
Heatstroke is where the body is no longer able to cool down and the body temperature becomes dangerously high.
Common symptoms of heatstroke include:
- lack of co-ordination
- fast heartbeat
- fast breathing or shortness of breath
- hot skin that is not sweating
Heatstroke is a medical emergency. If you think someone has heatstroke you should dial 999 and then try to cool them down.
You can find out more about symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke on NHS.UK.
How to cool down
How to cool down if you or someone else has symptoms of heat exhaustion:
- move to a cooler place such as a room with air conditioning or somewhere in the shade
- remove all unnecessary clothing like a jacket or socks
- drink cool water, a sports or rehydration drink, or eat cold and water rich foods like ice-lollies
- apply cool water by spray or sponge to exposed skin, and using cold packs wrapped in a cloth and put under the armpits or on the neck can also help
You should start to cool down and feel better within 30 minutes.
If you are concerned about symptoms, or they are worsening, seek medical advice by contacting NHS 111. In an emergency, or if you think someone has heatstroke, dial 999.
Spring Covid-19 Boosters For Vulnerable People – Book Your Appointment Today!
Bookings are now open for those who are at highest risk of becoming unwell from Covid-19.
Spring Booster vaccinations can be booked from today (5th April), with vaccinations being available from 17 April, subject to vaccine availability.
The spring booster will be offered to:
- everyone aged 75 years and over
- residents in care homes for older adults
- people aged 5 years and over who are immunosuppressed.
Eligible individuals will be offered the vaccine around 6 months after their previous dose.
The vaccination is available through a mixture of walk-in and booked appointments at pharmacies, GP sites, designated health centres and hospital hubs across the city and county.
People who have not yet received a 1st and 2nd dose of the Covid-19 vaccinations will still be able to receive this – however, following JCVI advice, availability of these vaccines will conclude at the end of the spring campaign on 30 June 2023.
Steve Upton, Deputy Director of Operations for the Covid-19 Vaccination Programme, said: “Like some other vaccines, levels of protection may decline over time. Boosters are offered to help you maintain strong protection from becoming seriously ill or needing to go to hospital if you catch Covid-19.
“That’s why the most vulnerable people are given a chance to top up their immunity with a seasonal booster. It is important those at highest risk of severe illness do not become complacent and I would encourage everyone who is eligible to come forward and book a spring booster as soon as possible.
“We have been delivering the life saving vaccine for more than two years now and our incredible teams of staff will be available to give you the very best service, help and advice throughout the whole process.”
People can book an appointment on the NHS website or by calling 119. Or you can also get a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from a walk-in site without an appointment. People can find their nearest walk-in sites on the NHS website.
How We Celebrated Social Prescribing Day 2023
On the 9th March 2023, we ran a number of events across Nottingham to celebrate social prescribing day. Despite the snow, it was great to see so many people turn out to these fantastic events to celebrate how social prescribing can help turn lives around.
What is Social Prescribing?
Social prescribing is a way of looking at healthcare which takes into account all the needs of the person, not just their health requirements. This could involve people with issues around mental health, social isolation, housing problems, financial or employment issues, in addition to their physical needs.
Social prescribing link workers can help people connect with the services they need for their issues, removing barriers and simplifying the process for them. Their work can have a huge impact on people’s lives, with countless stories of how our workers have helped people find a new lease of life.
Social Prescribing Day was a great chance for people to come together to celebrate how link workers can help create new social groups and spread joy throughout communities. Let’s take a look at just some of the events we ran this year, as well as some of the ongoing projects taking place…
Create & Calm Community Café - The Meadows
Clifton & Meadows PCN held their regular coffee morning with a special twist to celebrate the role of link workers and the great work they do in the community. The Create & Calm Community Café, which takes place every Thursday, brings members of the community together to relax, create, and socialise. It’s a fantastic outlet for those who are social isolated or struggling with the mental health and can massively improve the wellbeing of those who attend.
As well the usual games and crafts, there was also a special yoga session put on to help people unwind and become more in-tune with their mental wellbeing.
“Thoroughly recommend social prescribing for meeting new people. There’s always a lovely warm welcome and time for everyone” - Create & Calm Community Café attendee
Despite the snow, it was a great turnout and an enjoyable morning for all those that came. There was plenty of refreshments and food, as well as warm winter packs kindly donated by Groundworks and the Green Doctor, to keep everyone warm and comfortable.
Community Garden - Lenton
On 2nd March, PCN 7 (Wollaton, Bilborough and Lenton) started work on their community garden project on Sherwin Road in Lenton. This project looks to bring people of all different backgrounds together to form social groups with the common goal of creating a flourishing garden.
So far this has been great success. The base of the garden has been laid down and herbs, tomatoes, and parsnips have already started to grow.
Gardening can be beneficial to people’s mental wellbeing by reducing stress, giving people achievable goals, and as an accessible means of exercise. But as many people do not have access to gardens in their accommodation, projects like this provide a great outlet for them.
These sessions are also a great means for people to mix with others from different backgrounds and from different age groups, no matter their level of gardening experience! The attendees have already started to make new friends and form new social groups off the back of these sessions.
Due to this popularity, there currently no free spaces on this project, but you can contact Daniel Biggin to find out more and get put on their waiting list:
T: 07709 368 337
Bestwood & Sherwood
Our team for PCN 5 (Bestwood & Sherwood) were due to be holding their Renew Wellbeing Café on Social Prescribing Day, but due to the snow this could not go ahead. However, the team did not want to miss this opportunity to celebrate social prescribing, so instead attended the YOUNIQUE festival and Community Café at the New Art Exchange. It was a fantastic event to be a part of, allowing the team to spread the word about the great work they do.
Join the Health and Wellbeing Event in Bulwell on the 6th April!
Bulwell & Top Valley Primary Care Network (PCN) are looking forward to hosting their event promoting good health and wellbeing in the community at Bulwell Market Place.
There will be a range of fun activities for all the family put on throughout the day, designed by our healthcare experts to support active and healthy lifestyles. These FREE activities include:
- Sword Fit
- Bollywood Dancing
- Face painting
- Balloon modelling
Healthcare professionals will be on-hand to provide guidance and advice on how you can live healthier lifestyles. This will include members of the Stub It! team who will be there to provide information on the resources available for those looking to quit smoking.
It all starts at 10am and runs until 2pm. We hope to see you there!
Nottingham Healthcare and partners launch Notts 85258 mental health text messaging service
Nottinghamshire Healthcare, alongside partners across the Integrated Care System, has teamed up with mental health charity Mental Health Innovations to launch free and confidential mental health support 24/7, through the charity’s text messaging support service Shout.
From today (Monday 6 March 2023), anyone living in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire can text the word Notts to 85258 to be connected to a trained Shout Volunteer. The service is open around the clock and volunteers, supervised by a bank of clinicians, can help with issues such as anxiety, stress, loneliness, depression and suicidal thoughts.
The conversation, which takes place entirely by text message, aims to help the texter reach a calmer place with a plan to move forward. It will also signpost them to further support available locally.
Nottinghamshire Healthcare’s Deputy Director of Local Mental Health Services, Kazia Foster says: “This new dedicated texting service, specifically for people in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, is an excellent addition to our urgent mental health support offer, which includes a 24/7 crisis line and crisis sanctuaries. It offers local people a different way to access help when they need it and I would like to urge anyone who is struggling with their mental health or wellbeing to text ‘Notts’ to 85258 and get support from the Shout team.”
Shout is a free, confidential, anonymous service, designed to provide people with ‘in the moment’ support. Texting Shout does not appear on phone bills and all messages are confidential unless there is concern about someone’s safety.
- Nottinghamshire Healthcare provides a crisis line 0808 196 3779 available to anyone in mental health crisis at anytime, anywhere across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Available 24 hours a day, seven-days a week, it’s the number to call if you are experiencing a mental health crisis and need immediate help. It’s open to people of all ages who need urgent mental health support.
- Crisis sanctuaries are also available for adults over 18 at different locations across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, venues, days and opening times can be found here: Home | Nottinghamshire Crisis Sanctuaries
- For online support and advice for young people, visit: https://nottalone.org.uk
- Shout is a free, confidential, 24/7 text messaging support service for anyone who is struggling to cope. Powered by charity Mental Health Innovations, Shout launched publicly in May 2019 and has taken 1,8 million conversations with more than 620,000 people who were feeling anxious, stressed, depressed, suicidal or overwhelmed and who needed urgent support - About Shout 85258 | Shout 85258 (giveusashout.org)
No Smoking Day 2023 - Quit with Stub it!
Ahead of national No Smoking Day on the 8th March, there has never been a better time to attempt to quit smoking with Stub it!
With the cost of living crisis, we are all looking at ways to cut down on the amount of money we are spending. If you are a smoker one of the biggest drains your bank account may be the cost of smoking.
Estimates predict the average smoker spends £2,303.15 a year on cigarettes. That is more than the average annual energy bill, and around 8% of the average yearly salary in the UK. This is on top of the costs that come with suffering from smoking-related health problems, including having to miss work or buy medication.
This is where Stub it! can help.
Stub it! is a free stop smoking service available to all Nottingham city residents and provides personalised sessions with our stop smoking specialists to help find a way of quitting that works for you. This service is highly effective for many people, with 43% of people completing the programme managing to kick the habit.
Get in touch with us today to start your quit attempt: Stub it! - Nottingham City GP Alliance (ncgpa.org.uk)
Get On Your Bike and Take Part in ‘Love to Ride’!
Join the Nottingham biking revolution by taking part in ‘Love to Ride’.
Cyclists of all levels are invited to set personal goals, compete in challenges, and win prizes, all while experiencing the health and wellbeing benefits of bike riding.
Visit their website to register for free and take part - Register : Love to Ride UK
Free Lung Checks For 55-74 Year Old Smokers
Aged 55–74 with a history of smoking? You may be eligible for a free lung health check.
This free NHS service for Nottingham city residents will check that your lungs are fit and healthy.
Even if you have not noticed any problems with your breathing, we advise current and former smokers to their lungs checked so we can spot any potential problems early. Think of it like annual MOT for your lung health.
Eligible residents in Nottingham city, Mansfield, and Ashfield will receive a letter in the post with details of their appointment.
Find out more here: Nottingham NHS Lung Health Checks (nottslunghealthcheck.nhs.uk)
NHS 111 Online
If you are unwell or injured it is important to choose the right NHS service.
If you have a health concern but aren't sure what to do, try NHS 111 online first Choosing the right care first time, means that you and your family will get the best treatment available.
Get assessed and directed to the right place for you without leaving your armchair.
Use 111 online. Help us help you. 111.nhs.uk
Macmillan Big Coffee Morning
Stub it! Press Release
Want to make a quit attempt this Stoptober?
If Stoptober has got you thinking about quitting or making a quit attempt, you don’t have to do it alone. There are lots of great resources available on the NHS website or if you are worried you won't be able to quit alone, you can access support through Stub it! the dedicated stop smoking service for people of Nottingham city (aged 16+). The Stub it! team will support you in developing a personalised quit plan that combines behavioural support and nicotine replacement therapy.
Don’t just take our word for it. There is some great feedback from those who have sought support to quit with Stub it!:
- 88% of people who used the service felt extremely satisfied, and 91% of people who used the service said that they would be likely to recommend the service to a friend or family member.
- Since 2018, the Stub it! Team have seen over 2000 patients and counting! 40% of who have quit for good (higher than the national average).
Stopping smoking will save you money, improve your breathing and make you able to do more fitness and exercise. Take the first step on your stop smoking journey and fill out an online self-referral form.
If you would like to find out more visit the Stub it! website, call the team on 0115 824 0583 (option 2), email firstname.lastname@example.org or pop in and fill out a referral form with the reception team at GP+ between 4pm and 8pm at the Angel Row entrance (NG1 6JE).
It is of great sadness that we learned of the death of Her Majesty the Queen.
Queen Elizabeth II ruled for 70 years, longer than any other Monarch in British history, and it has been a constant for generations. As well as our Queen she was also a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. You can find the official announcement on the Royal Family website.
We would like to reassure you that’s the NHS, including NCGPA, will continue to provide services as planned. While we anticipate that appointments will continue as scheduled, we will offer compassionate care for those struggling with the impact of this news, please be considerate of others during this time.
We are not yet sure of the details for the period of national mourning, but we will update you as we learn more about arrangements and any potential impact it will have on the services we provide.
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'Living with COVID' Government Response
We don't yet know what the guidance will be for primary care in response to the new 'Living with Covid' reponse, therefore until this is confirmed, please can you continue to:
-Wear your mask when you visit your practice
-Keep distance when in your practice
-Arrive no longer than 5 minutes before your appointment time
-Avoid attending for routine care when you have COVID
-Tell your practice if you have COVID symptoms or are COVID positive when you have an appointment
That way all patients can feel safe - including those who cannot be vaccinated or whose immune systems are weak.
Bilborough Medical Centre Makes ‘Good’ Progress
Bilborough Medical Centre and its branch site Assarts Farm Medical Centre have been recognised as a ‘good’ following their first full inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Both practices have been managed by Nottingham City GP Alliance (NCGPA) since 1st April 20219, under a care-taker contract initially, and now as a full-time provider on a 10 year contract.
During the inspections, which took place in April 2020 and November 2021, the practices were examined on five key categories – ‘safe’, ‘effective’, ‘caring’, ‘well-led’ and ‘responsive’. The practices were awarded the rating of ‘good’ across the board, which is an excellent result and significant improvement from the last CQC inspection.
Inspectors have written up their findings in a report, which was issued to NCGPA on 11 January 2022. In the report it was noted that leaders had an inspiring shared purpose and strive to deliver and motivate staff to succeed. Focus was also given to the culture of innovation and continuous improvement at the practices thanks to the pilot of an automatic booking system that enables patients to respond to a text message and book an appointment for a specific clinic such as cervical screening.
To read the full press release, click here
#GrabAJab in Nottingham City Center
While you are out getting your last minute bits for Christmas (or even starting your shopping if you have left it a bit late) you can also #GrabAJab at Nottingham City GP Alliance.
There are appointments available Midday - 8pm Monday 20 December to Friday 24 December for 1st, 2nd or Booster vaccinations.
To book yourself in call the team on one of the following numbers:
You will need your name, date of birth, NHS number and last vaccination date (if applicable).
Once booked pop along to Nottingham City GP Alliance 64 Long Row (between Pepe's Chicken and Tescos) at your alloacted appointment time and get vaccinated.
AquAid - The Africa Trust
Here, at Nottingham City General Practice Alliance, we are aware that keeping our team hydrated will aid them to perform at their very best throughout the work day. As a result, we decided to invest in watercoolers from AquAid.
Our unique relationship with AquAid has also given our company the opportunity to help those less fortunate than ourselves, because with each purchase an automatic donation is made to The Africa Trust.
These funds are used to build ‘Elephant Pumps’ - a modified version of an age old Chinese rope pulley system. One such pump is currently being installed in Africa on our behalf and it will be a much needed source of clean and fresh drinking water for many.
Our organisation’s name will be proudly displayed on our well and we look forward to adding a photo and a letter of thanks from the villagers to our site in the near future.
To date AquAid have built over 8,000 such Elephant Pumps across parts of Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe; and have donated in excess of £17 million to charity.
Grange Farm Medical Centre
From 1 October 2021, Nottingham City GP Alliance (NCGPA) take over the management of Grange Farm Medical Centre. We would like to extend a warm welcome to all patients who are registered at the practice. The change will be mainly behind the scenes in back-office management. Patients will continue to see many of the same friendly faces when they visit the practice; with the addition of two new GP’s.
The practice opening times will remain the same and patients can contact the practice in the same way they always have. The website will look a little different to what patients are used to, but the new site is simple and easy to use www.gfmc.org.uk
Stub It! this Stoptober
Nottingham City ICP and partners are urging residents to use Stoptober as reason to make a quit attempt this October. More than 20% of adults who live in Nottingham City are registered as smokers, compared to 13.9% nationally. That means that a staggering 55,121 people in our city smoke.
Evidence shows that if a smoker can quit for 28 days then they are five times more likely to quit for good. Teaming this with behavioural support and nicotine replacement products, such as the service provided by Stub It! smokers will further increase their chance of quitting for life.
Parliament Street Medical Centre
Following a tender process by Nottingham and Nottinghamshire CCG NCGPA took over the provision of GP services for Platform One Practice on 1 July. The practice has become Parliament Street Medical Centre and has reloacted to 79a Upper Parliament Street, less than a mile from the Platform One Practice site.
If you were a patient at Platform One and need help or support you can visit the website: Homepage - Upper Parliament Street Medical Centre (parliamentstreetmc.co.uk) or you can contact the practice by phone of the same telephone number.