Archive for March, 2015

Easter health services

March 30th, 2015 | News | 0 Comments

As the long Easter break approaches, Sefton residents are reminded to ‘Examine their Options’ over the bank holidays.

Examine your Options provides practical advice and support about how to choose the right NHS service at the right time, reinforcing the message that A&E and 999 services are for life-threatening and serious conditions.

Dr Rob Caudwell, chair of NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “Bank holidays are generally busy times for our emergency health services, so we’re encouraging people to take a look at the alternative options and really think about which is the most appropriate for their needs.

“There are also some simple things you can do to make sure you’re prepared for Easter, like stocking up your home medicine cabinet with remedies like indigestion relief and paracetamol, as well as things like antiseptic and plasters for minor cuts and scrapes. If you are prescribed medication, make sure you have enough to cover the holidays.”

So if you do need health advice or treatment over Easter, download our handy guide to help you examine which option is best for you. The guide gives more information about all these options below: – where you can check symptoms, get answers to common health questions, enquire about non urgent health matters and find local services.

Your local pharmacy — can give expert advice about common illnesses and ailments and the best medicines to treat them. Many are open on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday and you’ll find details in our guide.

GP out of hours service – when your doctor’s surgery is closed, you can still see a local GP by calling your usual practice number and following the instructions to connect to the service.

NHS 111 – when you need medical help fast but it is not a 999 emergency. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Call 111 – free from landlines and mobiles.

Emergency dental services – when your dentist is closed you can call 0161 476 9651 for advice and assistance with urgent problems.

All this information is on our app, ideal for when you’re out and about. Get the app from Google Play or the iTunes App Store and search NHS SFCCG.

Adult’s diabetes services among best in the country

March 19th, 2015 | News | 0 Comments

Diabetes services in Southport, Formby and West Lancashire are among the best in the country in helping patients to manage their condition.

Latest data from NHS England ranks NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) the best in the country in supporting adult diabetic to control their blood glucose levels, with NHS West Lancashire CCG ranked sixth out of 211 CCGs in 2013/14.

In West Lancashire almost 6000 people live with diabetes. In Southport and Formby there are 6500. In West Lancashire a further 2,500 people have had a blood test which indicates they are at high risk of developing the chronic disease, with a similar number of patients across Southport and Formby.

Both West Lancashire and Southport and Formby CCGs commission diabetes services with a real focus on prevention as well as educating people on how to successfully manage diabetes in order to reduce the risk of complications in the future.

Testing blood glucose levels is one aspect of controlling diabetes. While Type 1 diabetics are encouraged to test their levels regularly, many Type 2 diabetics are testing more often than they need to which is proving costly and directing funding away from other areas of patient care as well as causing unnecessary discomfort to the patient.

Dr Bapi Biswas, local GP and NHS West Lancashire CCG’s lead for diabetes, said: “It is fantastic news that the people of West Lancashire are controlling their glucose levels. By controlling glucose levels, diabetics can help to successfully control their condition and go about their day-to-day business.

There are several key measures that are important in monitoring diabetes – blood pressure cholesterol and blood glucose levels. The latest National Diabetes Audit (2012/13) shows Southport and Formby to be in the top 25% of CCGs in the country for achieving targets against these measures.

Doug Callow local GP and NHS Southport and Formby CCG’s lead for diabetes added: “Improving care for people with diabetes is a priority for us and we’re pleased that all our work in this area is contributing to better support for our patients in Southport and Formby in managing their condition.    

“We also work with our partners from public health to ensure that patients at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes have access to lifestyle advice and support through the Healthy Sefton service to help them stay healthy and well and diabetes free.”

Both CCGs commission diabetes services from Southport & Ormskirk Hospitals NHS Trust and part of this includes supporting people to successfully manage diabetes in the community in order to reduce the risk of complications in the future.

Bapi added: “A lot of the work we do at the CCG focuses on giving people the information and access to services they need in order to live with their diabetes. Type 2 diabetics don’t need to test as regularly as Type 1 diabetics so talk to your GP or come to one of the local diabetes services to find out how you can manage your condition.”

A number of diabetes services are available across West Lancashire, including Walking Away from Diabetes which is aimed at people who have been identified as being at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. The course helps people to understand their risk and the changes they could make to significantly reduce the chances of developing Type 2 Diabetes. There are similar services in Southport and Formby, which focus on lifestyle diet and exercise available via lifestyle services referral.

NHS West Lancashire CCG’s Diabetes Patient Network gives service users the opportunity to have their say on how diabetes services should be delivered locally and to provide support to each other.

Doug said: “We would urge anyone with questions about their health and diabetes to speak to their GP practice, who will be happy to help.”

To find out more about these diabetes services in West Lancashire, please contact

Call Healthy Sefton on 0300 100 100 or visit for information about the range of free services to help Sefton residents live healthier lives.

Changes to Out of Hours Pharmacy

March 19th, 2015 | News | 0 Comments

The Out of Hours Pharmacy at Litherland Town Hall is set to close at the end of March 2015 and it will be replaced with a new system to make sure people can still get any urgent medicines they need after seeing an out of hours doctor at the health centre.

It follows a thorough review of this service based inside the Hatton Hill Road centre. The Out of Hours Pharmacy is restricted to patients using the GP Out of Hours (OOH) service, dispensing relatively small amounts of medicines, which is fewer than 1% of all medicines dispensed across Sefton. Around 3,600 people attend the GP OOH service each year and not all of these will need a prescription. Due to its links with the GP OOH service, the Out of Hours Pharmacy also has much shorter opening times than regular high street chemists.

A public consultation about the future of the Out of Hours Pharmacy was included in the review. Over 60% of people questioned thought the closure of the service would cause them little or no ‘inconvenience’ if they had to travel to another chemist and around 80% thought the NHS should target its money on more priority services.

Governing Body members from NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG agreed the decision at their meetings in January 2015, after receiving assurances that appropriate alternatives would be put in place for all patients who might be affected by the service’s closure.

Dr Clive Shaw, chair of NHS South Sefton CCG, explains: “A great deal has changed since the Out of Hours Pharmacy was set up and now there is little or no need for such a small and restricted service. It doesn’t provide all the services that it did when it was originally set up and these days there are plenty of chemists nearby that closely match the opening times of the Out of Hours Pharmacy in the evenings.

“We know that some people appreciate the convenience of this service and as a result of their feedback, we have developed an alternative system to make sure patients still have access to the medicines they need during the out of hours period. During the times when other local chemists are closed, the new wraparound GP prescribing system will mean that doctors from the GP OOH service will supply medications directly to patients during their consultation. In addition, anyone who finds it difficult to travel to an alternative chemist will also be eligible for the wraparound GP prescribing system throughout the entire out of hours period, so they are not disadvantaged by this decision.”

Dr Hilal Mulla, governing body lead for medicines management, NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “We have a duty to use our limited resources wisely on services that will have the greatest effect for local people. Because the Out of Hours Pharmacy is so underused, it is difficult to justify keeping it open when we know we could be providing more effective services that benefit a greater number of our patients.”

The alternative wraparound GP prescribing and supply service will be regularly reviewed to ensure patients continue to get their prescriptions when they need them during the out of hours period.

  • See a summary report of the service review and public consultation
  • The full Governing Body report and equality assessment can be found in the January meeting papers from the ‘About us’ section of this website

‘Listen to my Story’

March 17th, 2015 | News, Partner News | 0 Comments

Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group has launched ‘Listen to my Story’ a campaign in partnership with Merseyside Police to tackle the sensitive subject of child sexual exploitation (CSE).

CSE is a form of child abuse and is against the law.

It can have devastating effects on the lives of victims and their families.

For more information about the campaign and for details of how you can help raise awareness of this subject, visit

March Governing Body meeting

March 16th, 2015 | Events | 0 Comments

NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is inviting local residents to come along to its March governing body meeting.

Healthcare commissioners from the organisation hold bi-monthly governing body meetings in public to discuss and make decisions about local health services.

Doctors, nurses and other health professionals who make up the committees will discuss a range of issue including the performance of the services they commission, like hospitals and community care.

There is a chance for people to ask questions prior to the start of the formal meeting at 1pm, which takes place on Wednesday 25 March at the Family Life Centre, Ash St, Southport

Anyone with an interest in local health is welcome to come along and is asked to call to confirm their attendance.

Papers for the meetings will be available from this website ahead of the meeting.

Are you deaf or do you have hearing loss?

March 5th, 2015 | Events, Partner News | 0 Comments

Do you access out-patient appointments at the following hospitals: Aintree University Hospital, Southport and Formby District General Hospital or Ormskirk and District General Hospital?

Local patient champion Healthwatch Sefton is holding an informal group chat to hear your experiences, both good and bad. They would like to hear ideas on how improvements can be made.

The event is taking place at Brunswick Youth and Community Centre, Bootle, on Friday 13 March at 10.30am-12 noon.

If you would like to book your place please call Freephone or ext: 240, text , email or write to FREEPOST RTCG-HGXH-LHRS, Sefton Council for Voluntary Service (CVS), 3rd Floor, Suite 3B, North Wing, Burlington House, Crosby Road North, Waterloo, L22 0LG, please state whether an interpreter is required.

Be proud to be a quitter

March 5th, 2015 | Events, Partner News | 0 Comments

Sefton SUPPORT stop smoking service is encouraging smokers to ‘be proud to be a quitter’ by pledging to stop smoking on National No Smoking Day on 11 March 2015.

Over 10 million people in the UK still smoke, and around 100,000 die every year from smoking-related causes. The British Heart Foundation’s annual campaign inspires and helps smokers who want to quit. This year, over one million smokers are expected to use No Smoking Day to quit.

Sefton’s stop smoking team will be encouraging smokers to take the first step in their efforts to quit smoking and to be proud to be a quitter and to break the habit.

The team will be holding information stands in venues across Sefton to promote ‘No Smoking Day’.

Sefton SUPPORT stop smoking service community road shows will take place on No Smoking Day with regular clinics:

  • Wednesday 11 March at 10.30am – 4.00pm, The Atkinson Centre in Southport
  • Wednesday 11 March at 10:00am – 3:00pm, The Feelgood Factory in Netherton
  • Wednesday 11 March at 10.00am – 4.00pm, Aintree Hospital
  • Wednesday 11 March at 9.00am – 7.00pm, The May Logan Centre in Bootle
  • Wednesday 11 March at 10.00am – 4.00pm, Bootle Strand Shopping Centre

NHS Stop Smoking Services provide free advice and support on finding the best method of stopping including:

  • One-to-one support
  • Personal stop smoking plans
  • Treatments such as Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT), Champix and other medications that can prevent cravings

Colette Kearney, Team Leader for SUPPORT, Sefton’s local NHS stop smoking team said: “We are really excited about this year’s ‘proud quitters’ campaign as last year Sefton Support Stop Smoking Service helped over 2000 proud quitters to kick the habit. Research shows that if you access a stop smoking service you are 4 times more likely to kick the habit for good”

For further help and advice call Healthy Sefton on or visit


Fostering information session

March 4th, 2015 | Events, Partner News | 0 Comments

Sefton Council’s Fostering Service has launched an inner superhero themed recruitment campaign, encouraging local residents to come forward to provide the love and stability for children in care to flourish by encouraging their inner superhero, to be the best they can be.

To promote the campaign, Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre is hosting a free session from Sefton Fostering and Adoption Service on 11 March, 6.30pm.

At the event there will be informative presentations and the chance to ask any questions you have of Sefton’s expert team.

Experienced carers will also be on hand to give you the inside track and chat all things fostering and adoption over a warm brew.

To find out more contact the service on .