Approximately 6.5 million people in the UK are carers, looking after a parent, partner, child or friend. A carer is someone who provides unpaid care and support to a family member or friend who has a disability, illness, mental health problem or who needs extra help as they grow older.
Carer’s Rights Day aims to help ensure carers are aware of their rights, they know where to get help and support and to raise awareness of the needs of carers.
For more information and support visit https://www.carersuk.org/news-and-campaigns/carers-rights-day and https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/social-care-and-support-guide/support-and-benefits-for-carers/
Firstly, an update about patients’ access to their GP records via the NHS app. The plan is that entries, including those made by free text, and correspondence sent into general practice, will be visible to all patients in the future, and was to have gone live on the 1st of November. This has now been postponed, with a new launch date to be announced. We shall keep you informed of developments.
Many thanks to everyone for the positive feedback we receive. This makes such a difference to the staff and clinicians at the surgery, who often feel undervalued and sometimes demoralised. It really is appreciated. That is not to say that negative feedback is not useful, particularly when it is constructive, as it can help improve the service we provide. Gratuitous abuse, however, serves no useful purpose.
Have you ever wondered what a receptionist does beyond answering the phone and booking appointments? A receptionist’s job is surprisingly complicated, busy, fast-paced, and stressful, and requires excellent communication and organisational skills. Receptionists work a shift pattern to enable adequate cover for busy times of the day. On any given day, the roles involved include arriving early to open the Surgery for 8 am, answering the phone and getting details from patients wanting an appointment or with other queries, receiving deliveries and passing on samples and letters to the hospital courier, generating repeat prescriptions for signature, scanning documents to patient records, dealing with patient and document tasks, and sending, and receiving emails. Booking an appointment for the nursing team is complicated because there are many different appointment lengths for each different problem, and all the nurses have separate roles. They must have enough training to recognise potentially serious symptoms when speaking to patients, or identify ill patients in the waiting room, and alert clinicians when needed. They need to understand the NHS and available local services. Finally, and at the end of the day, they make a check of the premises, shut down their computers and lock up the surgery at 6 pm (or later, if there are still patients in the building). And all this needs to be done with a smile. Challenging does not come close to describing it! So, if you are bored with your current job and feel you have the necessary skills and aptitude for reception work, please contact the Practice Manager, Louise Smith.
We would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Stay healthy and safe in 2022.
Self-Care Week is the annual national event that raises awareness of what we can all do to improve our physical health and mental wellbeing. This year, the theme is Exercise Self Care for Life.
The organiser of Self Care Week is the Self Care Forum, a charity which aims to empower and encourage everyone to make self-care their everyday habit. And the Self Care Forum knows just how important this message is, particularly when times are as tough as they are right now.
Incorporating the practise of self-care into our everyday lives can help us to live as healthily as possible. And there’s evidence that suggests being as healthy as we can also help us to better cope with life’s challenges that come our way.
Self-Care Week is a perfect time to think about how we live our lives and maybe make some small changes that will improve our health and wellbeing, and our families. Those changes could mean looking at what we eat or drink, or how much exercise we do or how much sleep we are getting. They could be about our work-life balance, because staying connected to our friends and family is also vital to our wellbeing, and theirs.
Knowing what to do and where to go for help is an important part of practising self-care for life. Remember, it isn’t just the GP practice that can help, pharmacies are also health experts. They are on every High Street and can help with all sorts of ailments. Pharmacists can also signpost you to the right place for additional health advice or treatment.
Remember, NHS 111 can also be a good resource for health advice for things that are not life-threatening. And the NHS website has lots of information on what steps to take to look after you and your family. https://www.nhs.uk/ The Self Care Forum also has some useful fact sheets you might like to download. https://www.selfcareforum.org/fact-sheets/
The important thing to remember is, practising self-care is something we all need to do every day. For ourselves. For our families. And for the NHS.
We know what it is like to feel stressed and being under pressure is a normal part of life. But becoming overwhelmed by stress can lead to mental health problems or male existing problems worse.
Stress is the feeling of being under too much mental or emotional pressure. When you are stressed, your body releases stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol. A small amount of stress can be useful and can even get you motivated to take action and get tasks completed. But too much stress can cause a negative effect.
Find out more about stress, how to spot it and what you can do to try and help – https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/feelings-symptoms-behaviours/feelings-and-symptoms/stress/
November is Mouth Cancer Action Month, raising awareness of the signs and symptoms of mouth cancer. The sooner mouth cancer is detected the much better chance there is of beating it.
The most common symptoms are:
Many of these can be caused by less serious conditions however, it is strongly recommended that you see your GP or dentist if any of these last longer than 3 weeks.
For further information visit https://www.dentalhealth.org/spotthesigns or https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/mouth-cancer/symptom
November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month, and as it’s the most common cause of death from cancer in both men and women claiming almost 35,000 lives a year, the campaign is encouraging people to visit their GP sooner if they have symptoms.
Early detection of lung cancer makes it more treatable, so encouraging people to recognise symptoms such as a persistent cough, breathlessness and sudden weight loss and to see their GP could save lives.
To find out more about Lung Cancer Awareness Month, visit https://roycastle.org/.
Whilst the pandemic has, and continues to, take its toll on our mental health, the ability to reconnect through World Mental Health Day 2022 provides us with an opportunity to show what support and information is available for anyone affected by mental health issues.
It’s Back Care Awareness Week and as a lot more of us are working from home we may have become susceptible to lower back pain. Poor posture can be an unfortunate issue when working at home, but staying active can help ease lower back pain. For more tips exercises for back pain visit Back pain – NHS (www.nhs.uk)
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, when we talk about the causes of breast cancer, what symptoms to look out for and what support is available.
The first symptom of breast cancer that women notice is a lump or area of thickened tissue in their breast. Most breast lumps are not cancerous, but it’s always best to have them checked by a doctor.
You should see a GP if you notice any of the following:
Breast pain is not usually a symptom of breast cancer.
The first symptoms of breast cancer in men can include:
You can find more information at:
Cancer Research UK- https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/breast-cancer/symptoms
Check for Cancer – https://www.check4cancer.com
Why not go Sober for October with Macmillan Cancer Support. Some of the main benefits of going sober or cutting down are:
The NHS Better Health Campaign have a free ‘Drink Free Days’ app, allowing you to track your alcohol intake, view tips on cutting down and receive reminders when you need them most. The app is available on the app store or Google Play.