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    [title] => Bradford District and Craven mums-to-be  encouraged to fight the flu with free vaccine
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    [date] => 2017-12-15
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    [standfirst] => GPs from Bradford City, Bradford District and Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are encouraging pregnant women across Bradford District and Craven to protect themselves from flu. The free flu vaccination is being offered to every mum-to-be, to protect them and their unborn baby from the illness.
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GPs from Bradford City, Bradford District and Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are encouraging pregnant women across Bradford District and Craven to protect themselves from flu. The free flu vaccination is being offered to every mum-to-be, to protect them and their unborn baby from the illness.

Figures show that last year around half of pregnant women across Bradford District and Craven were not vaccinated against flu, despite the increased risks they face by catching the virus. 

Getting immunised against flu is the best way for expectant mums to protect themselves and their babies against the virus. The jab is quick, free and safe for both mum and baby, and mums can have it at any stage of pregnancy. Newborns cannot be given the flu vaccine so expectant mums who do get immunised will ensure baby will be protected for their first few months too.

Free flu jabs are available from midwives, GPs and local pharmacies. Even those who find out they’re pregnant later in the winter flu season are still be eligible for the free vaccination.

Pregnant women are at increased risk of serious illness if they catch flu. In fact, studies have shown that pregnant women with some strains of flu are four times more likely to develop serious illness and four to five times more likely to be admitted to hospital than the general population.

The flu vaccine only lasts for a year, so expectant mums who had their jab last year or during a previous pregnancy will need another one to protect themselves and baby. The jab doesn’t contain the ‘live’ virus so it cannot give you the flu. It normally takes up to two weeks to develop protection after having the vaccine and protection lasts all winter.

[content4] =>

Anne Connolly, clinical lead for maternity and women’s health at the CCGs said: “Every year we encourage those who are most at-risk to get their free flu vaccination. Mums-to-be could develop complications if they catch the virus; affecting both their health and the health of their unborn baby. Flu is an unpleasant illness that can result in expectant mums developing pneumonia, suffering a miscarriage, stillbirth and premature labour, and those who don’t develop complications will find they are out of action for a couple of weeks; making life particularly hard for mums who have other young children to care for.

"I am aware of the concerns of pregnant women have about the effect the flu vaccine could have on their unborn child, as well as the threat of catching the flu themselves. However, I want to reassure people that the seasonal flu vaccine is safe.

“As we’ve seen from reports over in Australia, an outbreak of flu can have a serious impact on the health of those with long-term conditions or who are vulnerable, like mums-to-be. Some people can have the flu but not show any symptoms, so it’s impossible to avoid catching it if you’re around people who haven’t been immunised unless you’ve had the jab to protect yourself and your baby.

“If you don’t have the jab you also are at increased risk of passing the virus onto vulnerable friends or family members, particularly others who are pregnant, young children or those over the age of 65, or people who have a long-term health condition.”

[content7] =>

Mums should also get their two or three-year-old children vaccinated. Free vaccinations for school children in reception and years 1 to 4 should have taken place in school, but if your child has not been vaccinated at school you can take them to their GP or local pharmacy.

Anne added: “Flu is an unpleasant illness which can result in a stay in hospital. In severe cases flu can be a killer. Don’t take the risk – speak to your midwife or GP today to make sure you have a happy and healthy pregnancy by getting the jab and getting flu safe.”

You can watch a video of Anne Connolly’s advice on avoiding flu for mums-to-be below on the CCGs’ Facebook or YouTube page here

For more information, speak to your GP, midwife or local pharmacist, or visit NHS Choiceshttp://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Flu

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15/12/17 / News

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Advice from GPs on staying well this winter as the temperature drops.

Following a severe cold weather warning for ice, wind and snow this weekend from the Met Office, GPs at Bradford City, Bradford District and Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are urging people to take extra care.

Winter sees a significant number of injuries and illnesses due to the cold weather, snow and ice, with older people being especially vulnerable. GPs are recommending a number of steps you should take to ensure you stay well this winter during this weekend’s cold snap: 

  • only go out in severe weather if you journey is absolutely necessary
  • if you are going outside, make sure you wrap up well (don’t forget your hat and scarf) and wear sturdy, flat, sensible shoes with good grip
  • for those in a wheelchair make sure you add an extra layer
  • take in lots of hot drinks and meals like stews and soups
  • keep your living room at 70°F (21°C) if you can
  • keep your bedroom at 65°F (18°C) if you can
  • keep your curtains open in the day and closed at night

If the weather means you can’t get out and about, speak to friends, family and neighbours to see if they can help you out. Similarly, if you know a vulnerable older person living alone, make sure to stop by for a cup of tea and see if there’s any shopping they need while the weather is bad.

[content4] =>

Cold weather does not just affect older people, everyone is at risk of slips and falls when pavements and roads become icy and being prepared can prevent unnecessary trips to hospital when you’d rather be cosy indoors.

If you have a journey that cannot be avoided this weekend and you must travel by car, make sure to plan your route, allow extra time, ensure your vehicle is fully prepared, you have plenty of fuel, and pack an emergency kit. Advice on preparing your vehicle in winter and what to make sure you have in your boot is available on the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents’ (ROSPA) website.

Dr David Tatham, clinical lead for urgent and emergency care at the CCGs said: “Each winter we see lots of people attending hospital with injuries and broken bones from slips, trips and falls which could have been prevented, with ice and snow making it even more difficult to stay safe outdoors.

“These are especially common in older people, whose bones are more fragile and who may not be able to recover so quickly.

“I’d urge everyone to avoid going out in the snow and ice wherever they can. If you journey is absolutely necessary, make sure you take extra care in what you wear; wrap up warm and ensure you have sturdy footwear with good grip.”

[content7] =>

If you need urgent advice in the cold weather but it’s not a life-threatening emergency, call NHS 111 by dialing 111 from your mobile or landline telephone. Calls are free and lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

To find your nearest GP, walk-in centre or pharmacy visit the NHS Choices website  or for further information on staying well this winter visit the NHS Stay Well website.  

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08/12/17 / News

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A spokesman for the three Bradford District and Craven Clinical Commissioning Groups said:  “This is the third annual carol service for the NHS, which has been very well attended and much enjoyed by everyone who has attended the festive get-together in previous years.

“In the run up to the 70th year of the NHS, we are looking forward to welcoming staff, partner organisations and their families and friends, as well as anyone whose life has been touched by the NHS.”

The service of readings and carols is also open to members of the public to attend. Tickets are not required, and doors open at 6.30 pm with the carol service starting at 7pm.

The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Cllr Abid Hussain, will attend.

[content2] =>

Bradford Cathedral will once again celebrate the work of local healthcare staff when it holds its Christmas carol service for the NHS on Thursday 14 December.

Current and former NHS staff across Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven - along with their friends and family - are invited to join the service at the Cathedral on Thursday evening.

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05/12/17 / News

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Bevan Healthcare Community Interest Company (CIC) has been nationally recognised for outstanding leadership.

Gina Rowlands, managing director at Bevan Healthcare CIC was selected as one of the Grant Thornton 100 Faces of a Vibrant Economy for 2017. The 100 faces are people who have demonstrated progressive leadership; they come from across the UK and work in a wide range of different industries.

Bevan Healthcare is a social enterprise, based in the heart of Bradford, committed to promoting high quality health and social care for the most vulnerable people in society. They work with the homeless, asylum seekers, refugees and others who may not engage with mainstream services.

[content4] =>

Every person nominated was asked about their strengths in three categories; growth, innovation and purpose. This then enabled the panel to decide the final 100 based on the people who best demonstrated the achievements and values that they feel are essential in creating a vibrant economy.

The panel said Gina stood out in every category but especially in terms of having purpose as the main driver in all the work that she does. For the judges, what really stood out was the way that Bevan as a service pushes above and beyond to really improve the lives of the people they work with.

Gina Rowlands, managing director, Bevan Healthcare CIC, said: “I am so proud to be on this list and especially proud of the team of people here at Bevan. The whole team work so hard and are really determined to improve the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in our society and it’s fantastic that we’ve been recognised for our approach to this.

“To me, leadership is about having engagement with your team and being inclusive. I think it’s so important to never underestimate your abilities or the abilities of people around you. Be true to your values and lead by influence and example.”

[content7] =>

Find out more about Gina and the Grant Thornton 100 Faces of a Vibrant Economy here

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27/11/17 / News

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Over 100 volunteer members of patient participation groups across Bradford City and Districts attended a celebration at Kala Sangam last week to mark the contribution they make to improve health and care provided at GP surgeries.

The event, hosted by NHS Bradford City and Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), recognised the valuable input of patient participation groups across the 65 surgeries in the area.

Each GP surgery has a patient participation group and representatives from each group take part in the Bradford-wide Patient and Community Network. The network meets regularly to look at how the views and opinions of all Bradford’s communities can be reflected in the care provided and to share new ideas.

Volunteers met last week to share and discuss good practice on a range of topics including; encouraging self-care, working with local schools, supporting young carers, understanding and sharing patient experience, the creation of Practice Health Champions schemes and how to recruit new volunteers.

[content4] =>

Successes at each group were celebrated and a competition was held to judge the best patient participation group notice board generated some fierce competition. Avicenna Medical Practice’s group took the top prize, followed by Kensington Partnership in second place and Grange Medical Centre in third.

David Richardson, lay member for Bradford Districts CCG said: “The celebration was very well attended by patient group members from across Bradford and their enthusiasm and ideas on how to develop the work of patient groups across the district shows terrific commitment to improving healthcare for everyone.”

The CCGs use the valuable information collected by patient volunteers as a key part of their engagement work. Feedback from patient participation groups is collected alongside the Grass Roots feedback scheme and is used to inform commissioning decisions about both current and future services.

[content7] =>

Details of patient participation groups are available at each GP surgery or on surgery websites. There is no minimum time commitment required to take part and you don’t need any qualifications to join a group, just a desire to help and support your local community, a commitment to ensuring patient voices are shared and a wish to share your thoughts and ideas on improving services at your GP surgery.

More information on how to get involved in the Patient and Community Network is available on the 'get involved' pages on our website. 

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14/11/17 / News

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    [standfirst] => Next week is national self-care week and there's a huge amount of events happening across Bradford district and Craven between 13-19 November. 
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Next week is national self-care week and there's a huge amount of events happening across Bradford district and Craven between 13-19 November. 

Highlights of the week include events at the Kirkgate Shopping centre with Billy Bantam and the Lord Mayor (Tuesday 14 November) and pop-up shops in the Airedale shopping centre, Keighley, throughout the week.

There are also events in Skipton, Shipley and Bingley to help people understand how simple lifestyle choices can make a big difference to their quality of life in the future.

The theme of the week is asking people to take part in the #makeonechange challenge - all about making one small change that will make a big difference to health and wellbeing. By taking part in the challenge, it is hoped people will be empowered to take control of their health and feel better for making a change.

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The small changes are meant to be things people can commit to throughout the year, not just during the week. Suggestions for changes people can make include:

  • cutting down the amount of sugar in your tea and coffee
  • taking a brisk walk for ten minutes a day
  • keeping a day alcohol free each week
  • having an extra portion of fruit and vegetables
  • quitting smoking.

Making a change is always easier when it’s done together and individuals are also asked to make pledges with family, friends or work colleagues if they can and share them on social media using #make1change

Cllr Val Slater, Deputy Leader of Bradford Council and portfolio holder for health and wellbeing, said: “We often take our own health for granted and it is only when we get ill or have an accident that we realise how important it is to look after yourself.

“Whether you are eight or 80, anyone can make a small change to their lifestyle to improve your own life and it’s never too late to make a change.

“By doing something now, it means you are more likely to live a longer, healthier and happier life which benefits everyone in the long run.”

Dr Waheed Hussain, GP and clinical board member at NHS Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), and lead for self-care and prevention, said: “There are things we can all do to make sure we take good care of ourselves and stay healthy.

“Self-care week is a great opportunity to learn more about the steps you can take to lead a happy and healthy life, both physically and in terms of your mental wellbeing. So whether that’s managing a long-term health condition or supporting a friend or loved one with their health or care needs, come along and find out more about the support available.

“We hope as many people as possible take this opportunity to have a look at the information being shared throughout the week or to stop by one of the many events, a healthy community benefits everyone.”

Steve Gascoyne, Head of Adult Community Health Services at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, said: "The events will be organised by Bradford Council, NHS Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), the Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Airedale Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and a number of other business and charities."

You can find out more about self care week by downloading the programme of events here. 

[content7] =>

Some highlights of events taking place during the week include: 

Monday: 

  • Airedale General Hospital – self care advice being given on first landing area in the main entrance. Possible vox pop location.
  • Mental health advice in the Kirkgate shopping centre.
  • Learn how to improve your fitness and manage your weight at Dyneley Barn, Skipton.
  • Free education session on living with Asthma or COPD at Douglas Mill, Bradford

Tuesday:

Join the Lord Mayor of Bradford, Bradford Bull’s player Ross Peltier and Bradford City mascot Billy Bantam to take up the ‘Make One Change Challenge and try out exercise equipment in Kirkgate Shopping Centre

  • It’s National Diabetes Day so why not make one of your pledges linked to preventing the disease. Exercising, eating more healthily and managing your weight can all help prevent the Type 2 diabetes which is one of the major health issues in Bradford.

Wednesday:

  • Come along and meet staff from the Public Health Smoking Cessation Team, Healthwatch, Relate and Champions Show the Way who will be offering self care advice information and top tips to reduce or stop smoking. There will also be an opportunity to join the ‘Make One Change Challenge at the Oastler Shopping Centre.
  • Come along to a drop in session where staff from Age UK will be offering self care information, advice and signposting using a range of tools and resources including the ‘Practical Guide to Healthy Ageing’ at the Wrose Independent Living Centre.

Thursday:

  • Come along to the Airedale Shopping Centre and meet the staff from Public Health Smoking Cessation Team, Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, Champions Show the Way, Healthwatch, HALE and Keighley Healthy Living Centre who will be offering health checks, self care information and advice about reducing or stopping smoking.

Friday:

  • An art group for people living with dementia and led by art therapists from Pioneer Projects will be happening at the Dyneley Barn, Skipton.
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10/11/17 / News

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As the Chief Medical Officer and experts around the world warn of a “post-antibiotic apocalypse” and “the end of modern medicine”, Public Health England launches a major new campaign in Bradford Districts and Craven to help ‘Keep Antibiotics Working’. The campaign warns people that taking antibiotics when they are not needed puts them at risk of a more severe or longer infection, and urges people to take their doctor’s advice on antibiotics.

  • It is estimated that at least 5,000 deaths are caused every year in England because antibiotics no longer work for some infections[i],[ii]
  • A new report from PHE out today reveals that four in 10 patients with an E.coli bloodstream infection in England cannot be treated with the most commonly used antibiotic in hospitals
  • ‘Keep Antibiotics Working’ campaign which has been launched by PHE warns people that taking antibiotics when they are not needed puts them at risk of a more severe or longer infection

Public Health England’s ESPAUR[1] report, published today, reveals that as antibiotic resistance grows, the options for treatment decrease. Worryingly, four in 10 patients with an E.coli bloodstream infection in England cannot be treated with the most commonly used antibiotic in hospitals.

[content4] =>

Antibiotics are essential to treat serious bacterial infections, such as meningitis, pneumonia and sepsis, but they are frequently being used to treat illnesses, such as coughs, earache and sore throats that can get better by themselves. Taking antibiotics encourages harmful bacteria that live inside you to become resistant. That means that antibiotics may not work when you really need them. It is estimated that at least 5,000 deaths are caused every year in England because antibiotics no longer work for some infections and this figure is set to rise with experts predicting that in just over 30 years antibiotic resistance will kill more people than cancer and diabetes combined.[iii]

The ‘Keep Antibiotics Working’ campaign urges residents in Bradford Districts and Craven to always trust their doctor, nurse or pharmacist’s advice as to when they need antibiotics and if they are prescribed, take antibiotics as directed and never save them for later use or share them with others. The campaign also provides effective self-care advice to help individuals and their families feel better if they are not prescribed antibiotics.

Dr Roohi Azam, GP and Clinical Prescribing Lead at Bradford City CCG, comments:

“As GPs we have a huge role to play in working with people to ensure antibiotics are prescribed appropriately and only when required. This campaign is a fantastic way to reinforce these messages.

“Penicillin, the first antibiotic, was discovered almost 90 years ago. This revolutionised medicine as diseases that caused life-threatening illnesses became curable. But gradually over time another problem has emerged and the terrifying reality is that some infections are now resistant to antibiotics. This is when antibiotics stop working effectively.

“Antibiotics do not work against all common infections as many are often caused by viruses. Sometimes the best remedy is time and rest. Your local pharmacist is often best placed to give expert advice on simple remedies first and many treatments for common illnesses can be purchased over the counter.

“Of course, you should see your GP if you are worried about an illness, as they will give you the most appropriate advice on how to manage your symptoms further.”

[content7] =>

Paul Cosford, Medical Director at Public Health England, comments:

“Antibiotic resistance is not a distant threat, but is in fact one of the most dangerous global crises facing the modern world today. Taking antibiotics when you don’t need them puts you and your family at risk of developing infections which in turn cannot be easily treated with antibiotics. Without urgent action from all of us, common infections, minor injuries and routine operations will become much riskier. PHE’s ‘Keep Antibiotics Working’ campaign helps to explain the risks of antibiotic resistance to the public. It is important for people to understand that if they are feeling under the weather and see their GP or a nurse, antibiotics may not be prescribed if they are not effective for their condition, but they should expect to have a full discussion about how to manage their symptoms.”

Professor Dame Sally Davies, Chief Medical Officer, comments:

“Without effective antibiotics, minor infections could become deadly and many medical advances could be at risk; surgery, chemotherapy and caesareans could become simply too dangerous. But reducing inappropriate use of antibiotics can help us stay ahead of superbugs. The public has a critical role to play and can help by taking collective action. I welcome the launch of the ‘Keep Antibiotics Working’ campaign, and remember that antibiotics are not always needed so always take your doctor’s advice.”

Dr Chris Van Tulleken, TV and of infectious diseases doctor at University College London Hospitals, comments:
“As an infectious diseases doctor, I see first-hand what happens if antibiotics don’t work – and it’s scary. Antibiotics are not just vital for treating serious bacterial infections, they’re needed to help with other treatments like chemotherapy. Antibiotic resistance is a problem that will affect every one of us, so we all have a role to play. As GPs we are often asked to prescribe antibiotics by patients who think that they will cure all their ills. The reality is that antibiotics are not always needed so you shouldn’t expect to be prescribed them by your doctor or nurse. Always take their advice and remember that your pharmacist can recommend medicines to help with your symptoms or pain.”

Public Health England’s new campaign is part of a wider cross-Government strategy, involving the agricultural, pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors, which tackles the threat of antibiotic resistance by increasing supply and reducing inappropriate demand. To help keep this precious resource in the fight against infections working, the public are asked to play their part and urged to always take their doctor, nurse or pharmacist’s advice on antibiotics.

For further information on antibiotics, their uses and the risk of resistance, please search ‘NHS Antibiotics’ online.

 

[1] English Surveillance Programme for Antimicrobial Utilisation and Resistance Report

[i] Gov.uk. Thirty-day all-cause fatality subsequent to MRSA, MSSA and E.coli bacteraemia and C. difficile infection, 2015/16. 2017. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/581282/HCAI_Fatality_report_2015_2016.pdf
[ii] Gov.uk. Annual Report of the Chief Medical Officer. Infections and the rise of antimicrobial resistance. Volume Two. 2013. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/138331/CMO_Annual_Report_Volume_2_2011.pdf
[iii] O’Neill, J. Tackling Drug-Resistant Infections Globally: final report and recommendations. 2017. Available at: https://amr-review.org/sites/default/files/160525_Final%20paper_with%20cover.pdf

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09/11/17 / News

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People living in Bradford are invited to share and celebrate the work of local patient participation groups (PPGs).

The event, hosted by NHS Bradford City and NHS Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), will bring together local PPGs to highlight, celebrate and share their work. It’s also a chance to encourage patients and the public to get actively involved in their NHS.

People of all ages are invited to come to the event which will be held from 12-3pm on Wednesday 8 November at Kala Sangam, St Peter’s House, 1 Forster Square, Bradford, BD1 4TY.

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Members of the public can come to the event to learn about the achievements of patient groups as well as share and learn new ideas and initiatives to improve or revitalise PPGs. It is also a chance for people to find out more about the benefits of joining a PPG and how they can get involved.

There is lots of work that local PPGs are doing which will be celebrated throughout the event. This includes engagement work with young people in Bradford, promotion of self-care initiatives and working closely together as a network. The event will also discuss how PPGs feed into the work that the two Bradford CCGs do. 

Max Mclean, lay member for patient and public involvement at Bradford City CCG, said: “This is a great way for us to celebrate how far patient engagement has come in Bradford, and how much has been achieved.

“Talking to people about health services is a priority area for the CCGs; we are always keen to hear people’s views on how we can get more people involved in the way their health services are organised and run. Getting patients involved, and the CCGs learning from their experiences, can really help improve the quality of healthcare services.”

To book a place at the event, please email: engage@bradford.nhs.uk or call 01274 237503.

PHOTOCALL: Wednesday 8 November, 1.30pm at Kala Sangam, St Peter’s House, 1 Forster Square, Bradford. Ask for Saeed Khan, from the CCGs engagement team. 

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02/11/17 / News

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The Primary Care Wellbeing Service has won a National Positive Practice in Mental Health Award for primary and secondary mental health care collaboration.

Provided by Bradford District Care Trust it was recognised for its partnership working and innovative approach. The service is provided at four GP practices across the Bradford district: Kilmeny Group Medical Practice, in Keighley, Tong Medical Practice, Moorside Surgery and Clarendon Medical Centre in Bradford.

[content4] =>

The team, working in partnership with GPs and the practice team, includes a consultant clinical psychologist, occupational therapist, physiotherapist, EMDR therapist, specialist dietician and a consultant psychiatrist. Staff work with patients with long-term illnesses or chronic diseases; and who frequently visit their doctor with physical and mental health problems, aiming to:

  • better support the patient’s long-term conditions or illness
  • improve patient care and clinical outcomes
  • reduce unnecessary hospital admissions
  • improve the quality of care.

Recent patient feedback includes:

“I have chronic pain and the team is helping me manage this pain better. I still get anxious but, but I am seeing my GP less and going to the hospital loads less.”

“The wellbeing team are brilliant! I have never had help like this before. I have stopped slashing (self harming) and I would not have coped without them.”

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25/10/17 / News

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People making a difference to the health and wellbeing of local people have been celebrated at the annual general meetings of the three Bradford district and Craven clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).

NHS Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts CCGs wanted to recognise the hard work of NHS staff, volunteers and patients at their annual general meetings (AGMs) which were held in September. The awards are a celebration of the work of those people whose work often goes unrecognised.

[content4] =>

Pam Essler, lay member, patient and public involvement, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG said: “The awards are a way of celebrating the success of individuals and teams who go above and beyond their day job to make a real difference to the people around them. It is great to see that there are so many patients on this list who take the time to work with their GP practices to improve and develop services for the wider population.”

David Richardson, lay member, patient and public involvement, Bradford Districts CCG said: “It is really important to be able to thank the people who quietly get on and help others around them as they often go under the radar without a chance to celebrate their achievements. All our winners – whether staff, volunteers or community champions – all play a key part in the health and care services provided in Bradford and district.”

Max Mclean, lay member, patient and public involvement, Bradford City CCG said: “These awards show how much commitment there is from staff, patients and the public to improve the experience of people using services in Bradford. I want to say well done to all the winners and thank you for all your hard work and dedication over the past year.”

The AGMs are attended by members of the public, patients, partners, volunteers, members of the CCGs’ and staff. It is also a chance to hear about the progress and plans, including the work that is being done to improve the quality of services for local people and address future challenges facing the NHS.

A tribute was also given to Isobel Scarborough who worked tirelessly across the district over a number of years to represent the views and experiences of the public at every opportunity. Isobel was a founding member of a number of local charities all of which supported the health and wellbeing of local people.

[content7] =>

The winners are:

Practice volunteer

Barry Rogers – Dyneley House Surgery (Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG)

Grange Medical Centre (Bradford City CCG)

Janet Menehbi and John Sheen – Rockwell Community Centre and Rockwell Medical Centre partnership – (Bradford Districts CCG)

Patient group

Practice health champions – Fisher Medical Centre (Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG)

The patient participation group at Clarendon Medical Centre (Bradford City CCG)

The patient participation group at Springfield Surgery (Bradford Districts CCG)

Practice staff member / colleague

Lis Baxter – Kilmeny Group Medical Practice (Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG)

Marie Stout – on behalf of Bradford Care Alliance (Bradford City and Bradford Districts CCG)

Sarah Rhodes – Barkerend Health Centre (Bradford City CCG)

Razan Begum – Bilton Medical Centre (Bradford City CCG)

Alan Bennett – Bowling Hall Medical Practice (Bradford Districts CCG)

Patient engagement lead (Bradford City CCG only)

Zara Bashir – Bilton Medical Centre

Nigel Bull – Kensington Partnership

CCG community partner / volunteer

Vicki Beere – Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven Health and Wellbeing Hub (Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG)

Rebel and Harris – Sharing Voices (Bradford City and Bradford Districts CCGs)

Community Connectors – HALE and partners (Bradford City and Bradford Districts CCGs)

Achievement awards

Julie Winterbottom, Managing Partner, Westcliffe Care UK Ltd on behalf of the team at North Street Practice (Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG)

The #selfcareeverywhere campaign group (Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts CCGs)

The patient network (Bradford City CCG)

Louise Keighley (Bradford City and Bradford Districts CCGs)

Wendy Parkin, patient chair of the steering group/network and chair of local patient participation group (Bradford Districts CCG)

Wibsey and Queensbury Medical Practice (Bradford Districts CCG)

Tong Medical Practice (Bradford Districts CCG)

Dr Jessica Drinkwater – Bowling Medical Practice (Bradford Districts CCG)

You can find out more about priorities and plans for each CCG in their annual reviews, available on each CCG website.

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16/10/17 / News

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    [standfirst] => Bradford Council is looking into whether there is the right level of access to pharmacies across the district and whether they are offering the service you need.
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Pharmacists are becoming increasingly important in the way we look after our health and the health of our families.

As well as picking up our prescriptions, we are also using them as to access advice and a broad range of services.

Bradford Council is looking into whether there is the right level of access to pharmacies across the district and whether they are offering the service you need.

Take part in this quick survey and you could help improve how pharmacy services are provided across the district. 

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10/10/17 / News

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    [standfirst] => An enhanced medicines support at home service (MESH) is supporting local people to take control of their medicines. The MESH service, funded by NHS Bradford City and Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), gives medicines management support at home to people in Bradford. 
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An enhanced medicines support at home service (MESH) is supporting local people to take control of their medicines. The MESH service, funded by NHS Bradford City and Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), gives medicines management support at home to people in Bradford.

The service, which started in April 2017, enables people to receive care closer to home and avoids unnecessary admissions to hospital. It is aimed at people who regularly take 10 or more medicines, are unsure of what their medicines are for, regularly forget to take their medicines, or are not feeling the benefit of taking the medicines they are prescribed.

Medicines waste is a big issue across the NHS, costing around £300m every year. For patients diagnosed with a long term condition such as diabetes, it is estimated that up to 50% of prescribed medicines are not taken as recommended and that just 10 days after starting a new medicine, 30% of patients are already non-adherent.

[content4] =>

Image: example of medicines waste found by the MESH team

Over 1,000 MESH reviews have been completed with many people having found the service to be extremely beneficial to the patient experience. So far, over 97% of people asked were extremely likely or likely to recommend the service to a friend or family member. 

Dr Sohail Abbas, GP and clinical lead, Bradford CCGs, said: “It is important for patients who are often prescribed a lot of medicines to understand what they are taking and what it is for. People may still be prescribed medicines that they no longer need as their health may have changed, which means that they won’t be receiving the benefits of taking that drug. The MESH service is also beneficial for people who have medicines at home that they no longer take.

“People can be referred into the service by their GP, a community worker, pharmacist or social worker. Carers can also flag to a health professional where they feel as though there may be a need for additional support around medicines use.”

Claire Standage, pharmacist manager for the MESH service, Prescribing Support Services, said: “The feedback we have had from patients who have received a visit has been fantastic, especially around how informative the visits have been and how beneficial the support has been in helping people better understand and organise their medicines.

“Our team listens to what people want to do with their medicines as well as providing advice and guidance. As well as the clinical benefit of understanding your medicines, the MESH team helps reduce stockpiling of medicines which contributes hugely to medicines waste.”

[content7] =>

More information about the MESH service can be found on the Prescribing Support at Home Services website.

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13/09/17 / News

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    [title] => World suicide prevention day: Men talking more the key to reducing suicide rates in Bradford
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    [date] => 2017-09-07
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    [standfirst] => Encouraging people to talk about their anxieties and worries, and seek help if they need to, is a key part of efforts to cut suicide rates in Bradford by health organisations in the district.
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Encouraging people to talk about their anxieties and worries, and seek help if they need to, is a key part of efforts to cut suicide rates in Bradford by health organisations in the district.

Bradford Council is raising awareness of the issue ahead of world suicide prevention day.

It also comes as Bradford Council launches a new campaign to offer support to people at who need support during time of crisis which encourages them to talk about their problems.

Credit card sized cards are being distributed to GPs and other health workers to give them tips on how best to start a conversation with someone who they are concerned about.

Nationally, men are three times more likely to take their own life than women. They are also less likely to share their problems and seek help for poor mental health. Because of this, the Samaritans promote the #itsoktotalk hashtag on social media.

[content4] =>

Between 40 and 50 people die each year through suicide in Bradford and the rate of 12.1 deaths per 100,000 people is above the national average.

However, suicide is preventable and it is not an inevitable act: the vast majority of people who do have thoughts about taking their life are able to find help and support, and go on to happier, mentally healthier lives.

If someone does experience suicidal thoughts, they should contact their GP for a conversation about how they can be best supported.

If they feel they are in a crisis, Bradford’s First Response service offers support for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis across the district: 01274 221181. They can also get support from the Samaritans online or by calling 116 123 on any type of phone, a free and totally confidential service.

Cllr Val Slater, deputy leader and portfolio holder for Health and Wellbeing, said: “We can all play our part in helping to improve the mental health of the district.”

“Talking about your mental health isn’t strange or wrong – it’s an important first step in being able to resolve the issues you face and finding help.

“Taking a few minutes to listen to family, friends or work colleagues concerns can really be a significant help which can often guide them find their own solutions.

“We are working with our health partners across the NHS and voluntary sector to raise awareness of the importance of listening to people’s concerns and aim to reduce the number of men in the district who attempt to take their own life.”

[content7] =>

Dr Angela Moulson, a local GP with a special interest in mental health, encourages anyone who is feeling suicidal to ask for help. She said: “There’s lots of help available for people living in Bradford and Airedale, including from their GP surgery, the First Response Service, and from the safe spaces provided by our excellent voluntary and community services.

“If you are feeling down, seek help early to help improve your mood and prevent further deterioration in your wellbeing. And if you are worried about someone else, ask them how they are feeling and encourage them to seek help – you could save a life.”

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07/09/17 / News

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Over 800 residents of Bradford district and Craven have had their say on the future of health and social care across the districts as part of a project run by Healthwatch Bradford and District.

The initiative ran throughout July and August on behalf of health and care organisations in Bradford District and Craven and was commissioned by Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). The ‘Big Conversations’ offered the opportunity for people to contribute ideas and thoughts which will help shape the future of local health, care and support services.

It aimed to be open and transparent about the challenges facing the health, care and support system, and invited feedback and new ideas on how to make sure we could maintain sustainable services as well as improving them for people. Findings will help to shape the Bradford District and Craven Health and Wellbeing Plan and will be discussed at the Health and Wellbeing Board following further analysis of the feedback later this year.

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Initial findings show that access to a GP and timely emergency care are high on the list for local people with recognition that problems accessing a GP appointment have a knock on impact on emergency care in terms of accident and emergency (A&E) admissions.

Feedback also included discussion around early intervention, prevention, the importance of self-care and a focus on early health and wellbeing education for children and young people along with an emphasis on involving people more in their own care, and looking at wider health and wellbeing with a more holistic viewpoint.

The initial findings will be discussed at the CCGs’ Governing Body meetings on Tuesday 12 September.

A spokesperson for the CCGs said: “The health and social care system is under pressure and we need to find smarter, more efficient ways of working to ensure people receive the right care, first time, every time. We cannot make decisions around how we approach this without the involvement of local people, so we’re grateful to everyone who took part to share their ideas on how we can develop services in the future.”

Cllr Val Slater, Portfolio Holder for Health and Wellbeing at Bradford Council said:  “We’re looking forward to receiving a more detailed report later this year and to continuing our conversations with the people of our districts to ensure their voices are heard and their concerns are addressed as we build a sustainable health and social care system for the future.”

Victoria Simmons, Manager at Healthwatch Bradford and District added: “Local people have been really willing to share their views and talk to Healthwatch about what’s most important to them. This interim report is just the first step in reporting back on what people had to say and making sure these views help shape the decisions that are made about the future of health and care.

“This has been a good start to opening up the important, honest conversations between organisations and the public about the need for change, and we hope there will be lots more to come.”

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More information on the ‘Big Conversations’ project is available on the Healthwatch Bradford and District website.

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06/09/17 / News

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With the August bank holiday weekend less than two weeks away, the three NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven are reminding people what they need to do to have a healthy bank holiday.

GP practices will be closed on Monday 28 August, so it is important to plan ahead and order any repeat prescriptions needed before the bank holiday in advance. People are also reminded to take their medicines with them if they are planning to be away from home.

For advice on medicines and minor ailments, people can drop in to their local pharmacy without an appointment.  Pharmacists can provide advice for many common illnesses such as coughs, colds, hay fever, allergic rashes and headaches. They can also advise if people should visit other NHS services.

GPs are also reminding people who may start to feel unwell over the holidays that they can check their symptoms using the NHS Choices website. It offers up to date and expert advice on a range of illnesses, as well details of local health services.  In some cases ‘self-care’ at home could be the answer.

[content4] =>

When medical help is needed but it is not an emergency, people can ring NHS 111 for advice and direction to the most appropriate service. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and calls are free.

People are urged only to go to their local A&E department or dial 999 in critical or life-threatening situations. For example:

  • loss of consciousness 
  • acute confused state
  • fits that are not stopping
  • persistent, severe chest pain (possible signs of a heart attack)
  • breathing difficulties
  • severe bleeding that can't be stopped
  • slurred speech, a face that droops on one side, or weakness or numbness on one side of the body (possible signs of a stroke)

In the case of heart attack or stroke, call 999 immediately. Every second counts with these conditions.

[content7] =>

Dr Dave Tatham, clinical lead for urgent and emergency care at the Bradford CCGs, said: “If you are taking regular medicines, make sure you have enough to last over the bank holiday weekend. By making sure you have enough of your repeat prescription to last over the long weekend, you can prevent becoming ill or even avert a medical emergency.

“A well-stocked medicine cupboard is essential, especially over holiday times. Having home remedies to hand means peace of mind. People can pop into their local pharmacy and ask for advice about essential items, there is also some great advice on the NHS Choices website about what items you should keep at home – www.nhs.uk.”

To find a local pharmacy and details of opening hours over the bank holiday, click here.

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17/08/17 / News

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People across Bradford District and Craven are reminded that there is still time to have their say on local health and wellbeing plans.

The ‘big conversation’ is continuing to run online until 9 August 2017, and aims to find out what’s most important to the public, to help shape future plans for health and wellbeing.

The conversations are being run by Healthwatch Bradford and District on behalf of local partners, led by NHS Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in partnership with Bradford Council and community organisations.

The aim is to be open and transparent about the challenges facing the health and care system, take soundings about current plans and help health and care develop new or different ideas. This is the opportunity for people to contribute ideas and thoughts which will help shape the future of local health, care and support services. 

[content4] =>

Julie Lawreniuk, chief finance officer and deputy chief officer, Bradford District and Craven CCGs said: “We’ve had fantastic attendance at the three events held so far. There was recognition from the people who attended the events that our health and care system is under pressure and understanding that there may be some difficult decisions that lie ahead. It was a great opportunity to hear what really matters to local people and have that open and honest dialogue. Although, it is important to say that no major decisions will be made without consultation with local people.”

Councillor Val Slater, portfolio holder for health and wellbeing, Bradford Council, said: “I would encourage local people to take just five minutes to have their say using the online survey. What you tell us as part of these big conversations can really make a difference to the future of health and social care in Bradford District and Craven.”

Victoria Simmons from Healthwatch, said: “We know local people really care about their health and care services, and we have had a great response to the events and online survey, nearly 500 people have already given their views. In the next few months we will also be sharing with local people the key themes and ideas that were given as part of these important conversations.”

People can continue to give their views by completing a quick online survey - https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/oursaycounts - or by contributing to the conversation on social media using #oursaycounts and following @HealthwatchBfd (Twitter) / @healthwatchbradford (Facebook).

[content7] =>

If people require information in a different format, they can contact Healthwatch on 0300 56 10 987 or email info@healthwatchbradford.co.uk

To find out more about the local health and wellbeing plans visit the Healthwatch Bradford and District website - http://www.healthwatchbradford.co.uk/oursaycounts

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28/07/17 / News

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NHS England has launched a national consultation about items which should not be routinely prescribed in primary care.

This consultation is open now and closes on 21 October 2017.

To read more about the consultation and to read the full consultation document, visit the NHS England website.

You can give NHS England your views using the online survey here.

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28/07/17 / News

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A new wellbeing centre at Bevan Healthcare will be officially opened on Wednesday 12 July. The refurbished space, based in Piccadilly in Bradford City Centre, has been transformed into a bright and welcoming centre for the vulnerable patients and communities at Bevan House. 

The new facility will be used to deliver more wellbeing activities such as cook and eat sessions, arts and creative workshops; and a homework club for refugees and asylum seeking children.

The health and wellbeing centre will also offer a range of services including education, training and employment opportunities. Experts will also be on hand to help people make the best use of services available in the community, known as social prescribing. 

[content4] =>

Max Mclean, lay member for patient and public involvement at NHS Bradford City Clinical Commissioning Group will officially open the centre. He said: “I’m really pleased to officially open the wellbeing centre which will provide new and innovative services to some of the most socially excluded groups of people in Bradford.

“This spacious facility will give people a safe environment where they can be supported to undertake activities that will improve their physical health and mental wellbeing.”

Gina Rowlands, managing director of Bevan Healthcare, said: “I’m delighted that we can now offer a greater choice of activities to our patients. Creating a calm, relaxing and comfortable environment for our patients is vital and will have a positive impact on our patient’s lives.

“We will continue to grow and extend our partnerships with like- minded organisations so our patients can truly benefit from a full range of opportunities available across Bradford.”

The whole practice team has contributed enormously to this outcome with persistent hard work, dedication and a fantastic attitude.”

Bradford City CCG’s clinical chair, Dr Akram Khan, added: “The wellbeing centre reflects the real commitment by the practice to help people live healthier lives, whatever their background or circumstances, and support them in other areas of their life.

“Expanding the services and activities offered will pave the way for patients to transfer back into mainstream healthcare and integrate into the wider community.”

[content7] =>

Bevan Healthcare is a social enterprise GP practice providing health and social care to homeless people, asylum seekers and refugees, across the Bradford district.

It provides a full range of GP services to its patients and works with partner organisations to offer a wider holistic service. It supports people to find stable accommodation, training and employment – and move onto mainstream healthcare.

Bevan Healthcare has funded the refurbishment using a Big Lottery Fund grant of almost £500,000, under its ‘Help through crisis’ initiative. Bevan Healthcare was one of only 58 applicants to be successful out of 677 bids from across the country.

For information or to use the wellbeing centre, please contact Helen Lincoln, wellbeing centre manager on 01274 905323. 

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07/07/17 / News

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People across Bradford District and Craven are being asked to have their say on local health and wellbeing plans. A ‘big conversation’ will be running throughout July and August to find out what’s most important to the public, to help shape future plans for health and wellbeing.

The conversations are being run by Healthwatch Bradford and District on behalf of local partners, led by NHS Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in partnership with Bradford Council and community organisations.

The aim is to be open and transparent about the challenges facing the health and care system, take soundings about current plans and help the health and care system develop new or different ideas.    Healthwatch want to hear what people think. The big conversations are the opportunity for people to contribute ideas and thoughts which will help shape the future of local health, care and support services. 

[content4] =>

Helen Hirst, chief officer, Bradford District and Craven CCGs, said: “We hope the ‘big conversations’ will encourage people to have their say and make a real difference to the way health and care services run in the future.  What people tell us during these ‘big conversations’ will have significant influence on how we plan for the future. There is no doubt that our health and care system is under pressure, and that there may be some difficult decisions that lie ahead. No major decisions will be made without consultation with local people but first we need to listen to hear what really matters most to people.

Gary, a carer who has already shared his views with Healthwatch, said: “Health and social care is probably the biggest impact on society, and we all need to make sure that we’re getting involved. I think it’s important for everybody’s voice to be heard – we’ve all got one. We all use these services. It’s our choice.”

Cllr Val Slater, portfolio holder for Health and Wellbeing at Bradford council, said: “What you say as part of the Big Conversation could make a real difference as we transform the way social care is delivered for the twenty first century and we’d encourage you to take part.”

Victoria Simmons from Healthwatch, said: “The public events next week in Keighley, Bradford, and Bingley are the start of an important conversation about the future of health and wellbeing for our District. I hope lots of people will come along, have their say and ask questions. We know local people really care about their health and care services so I’m sure there will be a healthy debate  – please sign up online at healthwatchbradford.co.uk or call Healthwatch on 01535 665258 to register and find out more.” 

[content7] =>

There are lots of ways that people can give their views:

  • completing a quick online survey - https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/oursaycounts
  • contributing to the conversation on social media using #oursaycounts and following @HealthwatchBfd (Twitter) / @healthwatchbradford (Facebook)
  • attending one of three public events:
    • Monday 10 July, 3-5pm, Central Hall, Keighley, BD21 3JD
    • Wednesday 12 July, 5.30-7.30pm, Carlisle Business Centre, Bradford, BD8 8BD (BSL interpreted)
    • Friday 14 July, 1-3pm, Mercure Bankfield Hotel, Bingley, BD16 1TU

If people require information in a different format, they can contact Healthwatch on 0300 56 10 987 or email info@healthwatchbradford.co.uk

To find out more about the local health and wellbeing plans visit the Healthwatch Bradford and District website - http://www.healthwatchbradford.co.uk/oursaycounts

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04/07/17 / News

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People in the Bradford district and Craven are being encouraged to know diabetes and fight it, as part of national Diabetes Week which kicks off on Sunday 11 June.

Over 35,000 people living in the area are diagnosed with diabetes. Nine in every ten people diagnosed with the condition have Type 2 diabetes which is preventable. That’s why the local clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven are supporting the campaign, run by Diabetes UK.

Diabetes UK are calling on people with the condition to talk about their experiences and share how they learned more about the condition, in a bid to inspire others to do the same and fight the disease. You can join the conversation throughout the week on social media using the hashtag #diabetesweek.

[content4] =>

Dr Sohail Abbas, clinical lead for diabetes, Bradford City CCG, said: “One in 16 people in the UK have diabetes. But it’s not just a national problem, there are also many people in the Bradford district who either have diabetes or are at risk of developing it.

“We hope that by supporting the campaign we will raise awareness and encourage people to find out more about the condition. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed if people look after their health and have access to the right support.

“Knowing about the condition and catching it early is important so that the condition can be managed much more easily through making lifestyle changes such as improving diet and exercising more.”

Dr Colin Renwick, GP executive. Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven CCG, said: “Diabetes is a long term condition that can have many complications with circulation, vision, kidneys and nervous system problems being some of these. The earlier we can diagnose it and start effective treatment then the less chance of developing these conditions will be.  It is important that people with diabetes understand and share in the management of their condition with their health professionals.”

Some people are more at risk of developing diabetes than others, including; those who have a family history of diabetes; are overweight or have a large waist size; are not physically active; and people who are south Asian or African Caribbean.

Diabetes is a serious life-long health condition that occurs when the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood is too high because the body can’t use it properly. If left untreated, high blood glucose levels can cause serious health complications. 

[content7] =>

People who are concerned about diabetes can talk to their pharmacist or GP, or visit: www.betterhealthbradford.nhs.uk/BBD

More information about Diabetes Week can be found at: https://www.diabetes.org.uk/Get_involved/Diabetes-Week/

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09/06/17 / News

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An inner city GP practice which cares for some of the most disadvantaged patients in Bradford is helping to improve the future lives of refugee and asylum children through an innovative mental health scheme.

Bevan Healthcare has developed a programme – Sharing Stories, Building Hope – which focuses on helping children who have fled their war-torn homelands to become more resilient and to flourish, supporting them to make friends, do well at school and sleep well.

The practice’s involvement has seen children grow in confidence, smile more and be happy, settled and make friends at school.

“This has been a remarkable piece of work and has been a really humbling and uplifting experience for us,” said Gina Rowlands, managing director at Bevan.

“It has showed us that with these children it does not require a huge amount of bureaucracy – this is the barrier which will stop the children accessing services. It needs to be fluid and responsive to their needs and they must know that it is safe.”

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At its meeting on 14 June, Bradford City CCG’s governing body will hear first-hand about the positive effects the programme has had on children, many of whom came to Bradford traumatised after witnessing war crimes, being victims of war crimes and staying in refugee camps.

Bradford has become one of the northern hubs for receiving refugee families through Home Office schemes such as the vulnerable person’s relocation scheme (VPRS) and the Gateway Protection Programme (GPP). In the last three years, Bevan Healthcare alone has received 650 refugees as new patients from these programmes.

In March this year, Bevan received the first arrivals from the new Home Office initiative: the vulnerable children resettlement scheme; and it is expected that, in total, 300 refugees will come to Bradford every year for the next five years, plus ad hoc unaccompanied children.

Sharing Stories, Building Hope has three elements: one-to-one counselling for GPP refugee children, group psychotherapy for VPRS refugees and antenatal courses for expectant mothers.

Counselling has been provided to children who have experienced violence against their families and communities as well as personal abuse. The impact on them has included being too frightened to go to school, flashbacks, sleeping problems and nightmares, loneliness and problems interacting with others.

With this support, children’s confidence has grown; they get along better with others, smile more, and more regularly attend, settle in and enjoy school.

Antenatal courses for expectant mothers, who are asylum seekers or refugees, are also provided, to focus on the importance of bonding between mums and their babies. The sessions, which were developed in response to reports of high ‘did not attend’ rates from this group of women, have led to positive changes for expectant mums.

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Dr Akram Khan, clinical chair of Bradford City CCG, said: “The practice has had a truly life-changing effect on some of the most vulnerable and traumatised children in the world; it reminds us all of what the NHS is about and the positive impact it can have.”

Going forward and recognising gaps in provision, Bevan aims to provide a more sustainable service to support children and their families now and for the future.

Bevan Healthcare is a social enterprise GP practice providing health and social care to homeless people, asylum seekers and refugees, across the Bradford district

It provides a full range of GP services to its patients and works with partner organisations to offer a wider holistic service which supports people to find stable accommodation, training and employment – and move onto mainstream healthcare.

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09/06/17 / News

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An awareness event organised by a Shipley medical practice, part of NHS Bradford Districts CCG, will give people chance to check their heart health.

The open day, aimed at raising awareness of heart irregularities, will be held on Thursday 8 June at Kirkgate Community Centre, Shipley, from 10am to 4pm. It has been set up by Westcliffe Medical Practice’s cardiology service, and takes place during Heart Rhythm Week, which runs from 5-11 June.

The event is the idea of Bradford Arrhythmia Group, a patient support group based at the surgery. It was formed five years ago by Dr Matt Fay, GP principal at Westcliffe and specialist in cardiology and Bernie Cahill, assistant practitioner in cardiology.

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The group, made up of patients with heart conditions such as atrial fibrillation (AF) a condition which causes abnormalities in heart rhythm, has gone from strength to strength, and now regularly organises awareness events as well as inviting professional speakers along to its bi-monthly meetings.

Bernie Cahill said: “The group came to us with a great idea for an event or speaker and members decided that Heart Rhythm Week is the perfect opportunity for an awareness event. This event is all about knowledge and getting to recognise symptoms of a possible heart problem.”

A simple pulse check could indicate whether a person may have AF. On the day, medical staff will be using a special ‘rhythm stick’ which changes colour if an irregular pulse is detected, along with a mobile phone app ECG. People would then be given a letter of referral to see their GP.

“We want as many people as possible to come along because often there are no symptoms with heart disorders and this simple test could save someone from having a devastating stroke later on,” added Bernie.

Dr Fay has been pioneering an innovative improvement project for patients living with the potential ticking-time bomb of AF. Prescribing anti-coagulant drugs in place of aspirin has led to fewer strokes in the district.

He said: “Abnormalities in the rhythm of the heart put people at risk of sudden cardiac arrest, heart attack or stroke. All strokes are devastating but AF strokes are bigger and potentially lethal. However, with a simple check such as regular pulse checks, any abnormalities can be detected and with the right care and intervention these strokes can be avoided.

“This awareness event is the perfect opportunity for people to come along and find out if they – or a loved one – could be at risk.”

There will also be a selection of informative leaflets and literature on hand from the British Heart Foundation, the Atrial Fibrillation Association and the Arrhythmia Alliance: the heart rhythm charity behind Heart Rhythm Week.

[content7] =>

Everyone is welcome at the event – no booking is necessary and refreshments will be available. Come along to the Kirkgate Community Centre, 39a Kirkgate, Shipley BD18 3E.                        

For more information about Heart Rhythm Week and Arrhythmia Alliance, visit: www.aaaw.org.uk/ and for more information about AF and the Atrial Fibrillation Association, visit: http://www.atrialfibrillation.org.uk/


PHOTOCALL: Thursday 8 June, 11.15am, Kirkgate Community Centre, Shipley. Bradford’s Lord Mayor Councillor Geoff Reid and Mrs Chris Reid, the Lady Mayoress, will call into the event. Ask for Bernie Cahill on arrival.

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01/06/17 / News

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A Keighley man who works for the NHS will truly be scaling the dizzy heights when he treks to the legendary Everest Base Camp to raise funds for Marie Curie Cancer Care.

Mohammed Sharif, engagement officer for the three local NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs): Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven, Bradford City and Bradford Districts and his friend Iqbal Singh are taking their passion for walking to a whole new level with this fundraising trip of a lifetime.

Sharif and Iqbal, who lives in Bradford and works for Securitas UK, will trek 200km up to Base Camp and back in October.

They are funding the entire trip themselves, so every penny raised will go to Marie Curie Cancer Care – a charity close to both of their hearts, after seeing the fantastic support they gave to family members who lost their lives to cancer.

Although both seasoned walkers – regularly tackling the Lake District’s 214 fells known as the Wainwrights - Sharif and Iqbal are upping their training over the next few months to meet the high level of fitness and training required.

Sharif said: “We have set ourselves a lifetime challenge to raise as much money as possible for Marie Curie as both of us have been affected by cancer, suffered by our loved ones. Cancer doesn’t just stop when someone dies: it lives on in the hearts of family and friends.

“This trek is a fantastic opportunity to test us to the limits, doing what we absolutely love, and raise money for the charity which provided our whole families with such kind and caring support.”

The exciting and challenging trek to Everest Base Camp will give the pair the opportunity to take in some of the most breathtaking scenery in the Himalayas and set eyes on the world’s highest summit.

They will fly to Kathmandu then drive 10 hours by jeep to the starting point, Salleri, which is the alternative to flying directly to Lukla. The trek will take them in the footsteps of the early Everest pioneers, when expeditions trekked to Everest Base Camp, before Lukla airport was built.

When they reach Base Camp – they’ll enter the stunning glacial environment of blue ice, and see the Khumbu icefall - the gateway to Everest, and cast their eyes on the world's highest peak.

At the highest point they’ll reach 5,500m in altitude. The challenge is strenuous and graded as extreme due to the length of days trekking at high altitude.                                                          

Sharif said one of the highlights will be meeting villagers as they trek the route through some breathtakingly beautiful scenery.

To help Sharif raise money for this great cause, you can donate to his fundraising page on Just Giving. Go to www.justgiving.com and search for ‘icky-sharif challenge salleri to ebc’.

  • pictured are Iqbal, left, and Sharif.
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30/05/17 / News

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An innovative and ambitious Bradford hospitals’ project aimed at improving care of the elderly, has won a major national award.

The Bradford Elderly Care Virtual Ward was named a winner in the Health Service Journal (HSJ) Value in Healthcare Awards 2017, in the ‘Improving Value in the Care of Frail Older Patients’ category.

The prestigious awards’ ceremony was held in London on Wednesday, when judges described the project as ‘an excellent example of highly functioning integrated health and social care service.’

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This year saw fierce competition for these coveted awards with over 400 entries – and just  20 winners announced.

The Bradford Elderly Care Virtual Ward is aimed at simultaneously moving care closer to home, whilst enabling more patient-centred care, and it has been developed by Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust along with NHS Bradford City and NHS Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and Bradford Council’s Adult Services.

It provides a single point of access for GPs, staff in the community and other health and social care professionals to refer patients from the Bradford district into all intermediate care.

This includes short-term hospital beds and services that give patients support to stay in their own homes, rather than being admitted to hospital.

It is run by health and social care staff who will have an overview of capacity across the district.

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The Trust’s Lead Consultant Geriatrician and Director of Elderly Care, Maj Pushpangadan said: “We are absolutely thrilled to win the award and for the project to be recognised in this way.

“Research tells us that when it comes to treating older people, the best place to care for them is in the comfort of their own homes.

“This new hub represents an exciting development in elderly care as it brings together health and social care professionals from across the district in one centre, all working together for the benefit of our patients, with the overall aim of providing a co-ordinated, personalised service which prevents needless emergency admissions to our hospitals. This leaves more of our beds available for those most critically ill.” 

Dr Pushpangadan explained that the Bradford Elderly Care Virtual Ward began in 2012 as a discharge-to-assess model, relying from the outset on working together across organisational boundaries of health and social care teams. The team is multidisciplinary, comprising therapists, qualified nurses, advanced nurse practitioners, rehabilitation support workers, local authority colleagues and consultant geriatrician input.

In 2015 the team developed an integrated hub with partners, and new pathways taking direct referrals from community matrons, GPs and local ambulance services. Within hours, on any day of the week, the hub can escalate community support, initiate rehabilitation-at-home, or directly admit to community hospital rehabilitation or a nursing home flexi-bed.

“Multiple hospital admissions have been entirely prevented, and length of stay in hospital has been further reduced. As a result, Bradford Teaching Hospitals is now in the top 5 per cent of trusts across the country for shortest length of stay.

“More importantly the Trust has also demonstrated significant improvements in patient quality of life and high rates of patient satisfaction,” added Dr Pushpangadan.

In awarding the honour, judges said: “This is an excellent example of highly functioning integrated health and social care service. Its multi-skilled team including social care staff used clear data to demonstrate improvement in quantitative data and patient experience.”

Lead Advanced Nurse Practitioner, Elderly and Intermediate Care, Andrea Allanach added: “Whilst only a few of us were able to attend the ceremony, it must be remembered that it is the hard work of the whole team that has achieved this award. Without the whole team’s commitment, care and compassion our success in improving care for frail older people in Bradford would not have been possible.”

The Trust’s Chief Executive, Professor Clive Kay said: “I’d like to congratulate Dr Pushpangadan and his team on this very well-deserved success. Not only do they provide an outstanding service but such achievements continue to help put BTHFT 'on the map'.

“This is just recognition for the team's superb efforts over many years in providing truly multi-disciplinary patient-centred care.”

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[isfolder] => 0 [tags] => [media_id] => 1333 [posttype_id] => 1 [eventstart] => [eventend] => ) [tainted] => 1 [sys.belongs-to] => Array ( [0] => 1 ) [sys.shadow.sharedCategory] => Array ( [1] => RedBean_OODBBean Object ( [flagSkipBeau:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [properties:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( [id] => 1 [name] => Bradford City CCG [posttype_id] => 1 [page_id] => 7 [template] => Default - Bradford City [objecttype] => post ) [__info:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( [type] => category [sys.id] => id [sys.orig] => Array ( [id] => 1 [name] => Bradford City CCG [posttype_id] => 1 [page_id] => 7 [template] => Default - Bradford City [objecttype] => post ) [tainted] => [sys.belongs-to] => Array ( [0] => 850 ) ) [beanHelper:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => RedBean_BeanHelper_Facade Object ( ) [fetchType:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [withSql:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [withParams:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( ) [aliasName:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [via:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [writeOnly:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => ) [2] => RedBean_OODBBean Object ( [flagSkipBeau:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [properties:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( [id] => 2 [name] => Bradford Districts CCG [posttype_id] => 1 [page_id] => 65 [template] => Default - Bradford District [objecttype] => post ) [__info:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( [type] => category [sys.id] => id [sys.orig] => Array ( [id] => 2 [name] => Bradford Districts CCG [posttype_id] => 1 [page_id] => 65 [template] => Default - Bradford District [objecttype] => post ) [tainted] => [sys.belongs-to] => Array ( [0] => 850 ) ) [beanHelper:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => RedBean_BeanHelper_Facade Object ( ) [fetchType:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [withSql:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [withParams:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( ) [aliasName:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [via:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [writeOnly:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => ) ) ) [beanHelper:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => RedBean_BeanHelper_Facade Object ( ) [fetchType:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [withSql:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [withParams:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => Array ( ) [aliasName:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [via:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => [writeOnly:RedBean_OODBBean:private] => ) [adfs] => Array ( ) )

26/05/17 / News