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Big White Wall wins Tech4Good award at Investor Allstars 2018

Big White Wall, the digital mental health and wellbeing service available free to all people using a Fylde and Wyre postcode, was presented with the Tech4Good award for its outstanding social impact mission at the Investor Allstars 2018 ceremony.

Now in its 16th year, the annual event celebrates the achievements of investors and entrepreneurs that are shaping the future growth and impact of the European digital economy.

Investor Allstar 2018 winner, Big White Wall, received the Tech4Good award at the London ceremony for its founding mission to improve the mental health and wellbeing of the UK and beyond.

Dr Kath Greenwood, a Poulton GP who is the clinical lead for mental health at NHS Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “Big White Wall is an excellent resource that can be accessed free of charge by anyone using a Fylde and Wyre postcode. It is also available in some other areas of Lancashire.

“I’m delighted to hear the service has won this award which is very well deserved. The service provides on line support manned and  monitored 24 hours a day, by trained counsellors, as well as many self help resources and a peer support network. It is a responsive service but completely anonymous to ensure patients safety.

“I would recommend it to anybody in Fylde and Wyre who has mental health problems as an extra support tool they can use, at any time of the day or night, and be sure that somebody will get back to them. It is especially useful if somebody is on a long waiting list and needs some more immediate support.”

Liam Black, executive chair of Big White Wall, said: “Being shortlisted for this award in 2017, and then announced as the winner this year is a phenomenal achievement for us, and one that we are extremely proud of.

“It is fantastic to be named alongside some of the most innovative companies in the technology sector that are shaping and changing the way that technology is used for the better. Our social mission is clear, we want to transform mental health services in the UK and beyond.”

Big White Wall is active in helping shape policy that supports transformative models of healthcare through digital offerings. Its social mission is to transform mental health services in the UK, improving the wellbeing of thousands of people, with investment from Impact Ventures UK allowing the business to scale in activity and bring innovative solutions to reach even more people.

Big White Wall is accessible to 15 million people in the UK and is widely commissioned across the NHS, employers, universities and the military. The service gives its users access to 24/7 professionally moderated online peer support and can provide online 1:1 therapy as part of its offering. Thus far, Big White Wall has reported that 95% of users have seen overall improvements in their wellbeing.

Big White Wall is the first digital mental health service to be registered by the CQC, and in 2016 received a coveted ‘Good’ rating. In addition, is influenced and evidenced-formed in alignment with NICE guidelines, enabling Big White Wall’s online therapy segment of the service to achieve outstanding recovery rates for depression and anxiety.

Service user and carer mental health listening event

Have you experience of mental health service in Lancashire and South Cumbria?  Do you care for someone who has used mental health services?

Your help is needed to shape the future of mental health services in Lancashire and South Cumbria, the first step is to come to one of our listening events.

The listening events will be led independently and aim to give an opportunity to listen to people that use services and the people who care for them.  We want to find out which bits you think need to improve and what you think ‘good’ services would be like – all of your ideas, feedback and experiences will be used to develop future plans for mental health services in Lancashire and South Cumbria.

A Fylde Coast event will be held on Wednesday 14 November from 4pm to 6pm at Blackpool FC Hotel and Conference Centre in Seasiders Way, Blackpool, FY1 6JJ.

To book your place, visit https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/mental-health-listening-event-in-blackpool-fylde-coast-tickets-51402201368

Alternatively you can contactus to book your place, or to find out more:

We will reimburse for travel expenses (motor mileage or rail/bus travel costs) if this is required. If you need further support to get to the events please let us know when you make your booking.  

Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria is a partnership of organisations working together to improve services and help the 1.7 million people in Lancashire and South Cumbria live longer, healthier lives.

Find out more at www.healthierlsc.co.uk


Former council boss joins CCG

Former South Ribble Council chief executive Mike Nuttall has joined the Governing Body at NHS Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

Mr Nuttall has been appointed as lay member for governance, overseeing crucial areas such as financial management, audit, remuneration, risk, managing conflicts of interest and ensuring management and assurance systems are in place and regularly reviewed.

The football fan and Preston North End season ticket-holder has taken the role following the retirement of Paul Olive from the CCG, the organisation that plans and buys health services for the 176,000 people living across the Fylde and Wyre boroughs.

He said: “I have more than three decades of experience within local government and the public sector and was keen to put this to use within the local NHS.

“I have seen a lot of exciting and innovative work being done at Fylde and Wyre over the past few years so I’m delighted to come on board.

“I have lived and worked in Lancashire all my life so have a really good understanding of the opportunities the area has to offer as well as its challenges.

“Coming from a non-NHS background I think this is a perfect opportunity for me to experience a new way of working but also to offer a new way of looking at things.”

A qualified accountant, Mr Nuttall spent 20 years as a director of finance in local government. As part of his new role he will chair the CCG’s audit committee and play a key role in preparing the annual accounts.

CCG chair Mary Dowling said: “I am delighted to welcome Mike to the CCG.  He will build on Paul Olive’s work and play an important role in maintaining and improving our governance arrangements.”

Selling self care with selfies

People living on the Fylde Coast have been encouraged to promote self-care by taking a selfie.

From November 12 to 18 the national Self Care Week campaign will encourage people to do something to promote their own health and wellbeing.

Self Care Week is an opportunity to promote self-care, which is one of the most effective tools in the promotion of prolonged good health and wellbeing.

The week-long campaign will be supported by local NHS organisations and local councils across the Fylde Coast and they will encourage people to ‘choose self care for life.’

In the build-up to the week, residents who already lead a healthy lifestyle, whether that’s physically or mentally have been asked to help inspire others.

If you do anything that helps your mental or physical health you can be an inspiration to those that need a little encouragement. Whatever it is you do, take a quick photo and share it using #selfcareselfie on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Dr Amanda Doyle OBE, a Fylde Coast GP who is also accountable officer of the two CCGs, said: “Self-care is a vital element to prolonged and sustained health and wellbeing.

“The Self Care Week campaign provides healthcare providers and our partners with an opportunity to shine a light on this issue and encourage people to do things to improve their health. There are an almost limitless amount of things you can do to improve your health and I would encourage everyone to get involved with this campaign.”

Self care encompasses a broad range of subjects, from healthier eating and increased activity to improved physical health to book groups and knit-and-natter groups to reduce loneliness and social isolation.

There are thousands of opportunities on the Fylde Coast through various groups, clubs and services; many of which are listed on the FYi Directory. During Self Care Week, organisations will promote the activities and work with health professionals to promote the benefits of leading a self caring lifestyle.

They will be used to show the vast range of opportunities available. Who knows, your selfie could help change someone’s life.

For more information about Self Care Week, visit www.fitterfyldecoast.nhs.uk.

Have your say on proposed NHS policy for the reversal of sterilisation

People living across the Fylde Coast have been invited to have their say on a proposed new NHS policy for the reversal of sterilisation in both men and women.

It comes as part of work by the NHS across Lancashire to standardise policies to ensure a consistent and fair approach; update current policies in accordance with national guidelines and best clinical practice; and to make sure it is using its limited resources to maximum effect.

Along with the other six Lancashire and South Cumbria clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), NHS Blackpool and NHS Fylde and Wyre CCGs have asked the public to let them know what they think of the proposals.

Full details of the changes can be found within the policy. People are invited to read the revised draft policies and to complete a survey.

Dr Amanda Doyle OBE, a Fylde Coast GP who is also accountable officer for NHS Blackpool CCG and interim accountable officer for NHS Fylde and Wyre CCG, said: “We need to ensure this is done in an open, fair and transparent way while also taking into account the limited resources we have.

“A key role for the CCGs is to develop clinical policies that help us make decisions about the use of those limited resources.

“I would encourage any resident with an interest in these policies to visit the CCG websites and have their say.”

To view the proposed policy and complete the survey, visit https://www.healthierlsc.co.uk/our-priority-areas/reviewing-clinical-policies/current-clinical-policy-reviews/sterilisation-reversal-males-and-females  

The survey will close on Friday 2 November 2018.

Monkeypox information

Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus.

Most cases have been in Africa. The risk of catching monkeypox in the UK is very low.

It’s usually a mild illness that will get better on its own without treatment. Some people can develop more serious symptoms, so patients with monkeypox in the UK are cared for in specialist hospitals.

What is the risk of catching monkeypox in the UK?

There have been 3 cases of monkeypox in the UK in September 2018. The first two were in people who had travelled from Africa.

The third person was a healthcare worker who cared for one of the two first cases. The healthcare worker was infected before monkeypox was suspected and special precautions were put in place.

Public Health England has already contacted everyone who was known to be in close contact with the 3 infected people.

If you haven’t been contacted by Public Health England, be reassured you are extremely unlikely to catch monkeypox.

Symptoms of monkeypox

The illness begins with:

  • high temperature
  • headache
  • muscle aches
  • backache
  • swollen glands
  • chills
  • exhaustion

A rash usually begins 1 to 5 days after the first symptoms appear. The spots often start on the face before spreading to other parts of the body.

During the illness the rash changes from raised red bumps, to spots filled with fluid. The spots eventually form scabs which later fall off.

How monkeypox is spread

Monkeypox does not spread easily between people, but it’s possible to catch it from:

  • touching items like clothing, bedding or towels used by an infected person
  • touching monkeypox spots or scabs
  • a person with a monkeypox rash who coughs or sneezes near you

Diagnosis of monkeypox

It’s difficult to know if the infection is monkeypox as it can often be confused with other infections such as chickenpox.

It is diagnosed after an examination by a specialist and testing by Public Health England.

Treating monkeypox

Treatment for monkeypox aims to relieve the symptoms and takes place in specialist hospitals.

Further information

Find more detailed information on monkeypox on GOV.UK.

Don’t miss out on your chance to be a Guinness World Record breaker

People living across the Fylde Coast can still sign up to break a Guinness World Record on Saturday morning.

As part of the NHS’ 70th birthday, people across the area have been encouraged to bring their children and families to Lytham Festival’s main arena on Lytham Green to help break the record for the most people exercising to a fitness video. The current record, set in China, stands at 4,814 people.

Local doctors have teamed up with Lytham Festival organisers Cuffe & Taylor to hold the attempt in the middle of the Lancashire music festival. Local councils and other organisations including the Blue Skies Foundation have also played a part in organising the record attempt.

Dancing on Ice star Daniel Whiston has choreographed and filmed a fitness routine, called the Whiston Wave, to be used at the event and promote a ‘fitter Fylde Coast’.

Daniel said: “I can’t wait for this Saturday. It’s a great excuse to get together with your friends and family and be part of a Guinness World Record attempt.

“Loads of people have been limbering up to get ready for this and the support is fantastic, so we want to see as many people as possible taking part and hopefully they will all go away with a record breaking medal.”

Dr Tony Naughton, clinical chief officer at NHS Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), who has spearheaded the attempt, has urged people to go to www.fitterfyldecoast.nhs.uk and sign up.

Dr Naughton said: “We have had a fantastic response to our Guinness World Record attempt so far and I am really excited to see all the children and families come down on Saturday to become record breakers.

“I would urge everyone who wants to join in to go online and book a free ticket as this is the only way to guarantee entry and to avoid queueing on Saturday morning.

“This is going to be a great day for everyone and what’s more, everyone who takes part will get a medal as a memento of the special occasion.”

The Guinness World Record attempt for the most people exercising to a fitness video will take place in the main arena at Lytham Festival from 10am on Saturday July 21. To register, visit www.fitterfyldecoast.nhs.uk

Volunteer to help create a Fitter Fylde Coast

People living across the Fylde coast have been invited to play a key role in an exciting and unique event taking place later this month.

Organisers of the world record attempt – for the most people exercising to a fitness video at Lytham Festival on Saturday 21 July – need to recruit more than 100 volunteer marshals to make sure the event is a success.

The Fylde coast NHS has joined forces with local authorities including Fylde Council, as well as Lytham Festival organisers Cuffe and Taylor, to hold the event to raise awareness of the need to keep fit while also celebrating the NHS’ 70th birthday.

A six-minute exercise routine has been choreographed and filmed by Blackpool-based Dancing on Ice star Dan Whiston.

Fylde coast GP Dr Tony Naughton, who has been the driving force behind the event, said: “We need volunteers to make sure we break the record while following the rules set by Guinness World Records.

“This means we need a volunteer for every 50 participants who will watch them to make sure they follow the exercise routine to the best of their ability.

“This is a great opportunity for people across the area to become part of the team and to have a key role in breaking the record. All volunteers will receive a medal and recognition of being part of the attempt.”

All volunteers will need to be on the site at Lytham Green on Saturday 21 July from 8am. Everyone will be finished by noon.

Anyone interested in signing up to be a volunteer is asked to visit www.fitterfyldecoast.nhs.uk/volunteer/ and fill out the form.


NHS welcomes questions for annual meetings

People living across the Fylde coast can ask questions of their local NHS as the three local organisations in the area come together for their joint annual meetings.

The annual general meetings of NHS Blackpool and Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and the annual members meeting of Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust will, for the third year running, be held as a single joint meeting.

This year’s meeting is on Thursday 5 July at the education centre at Blackpool Victoria Hospital from 9.45am. The meeting will be followed by a chance to visit the celebrations for the NHS’ 70th anniversary taking place in the main hospital building.

In preparation for the meeting the two CCGs have already published their annual reports on their websites with paper copies available at the meeting. The reports set out the progress made to develop safe, high quality health services for local people. It also describes how the NHS has worked closely with local GPs, patients, carers, local authorities and partner organisations to shape plans for the future that put patients at the very heart of services.

Residents are also invited to send any questions for the organisations ahead of the meeting by email to [email protected]. The questions will be answered during the meeting and also made available on the organisations’ websites afterwards.

The meeting will also be streamed live via the NHS Blackpool CCG Facebook page found at www.facebook.com/blackpoolccg

Have your say on NHS hearing aid services

The views and experiences of NHS hearing aid users with age related hearing loss, over 50 years of age, are being sought to help understand what NHS hearing aid services are like locally and to help improve them.

Dr Adam Black, GP lead for audiology services in Lancashire and South Cumbria, said: “We are asking people living anywhere in Lancashire or South Cumbria, who are over the age of 50 who use NHS hearing aids to tell us what they think of the service and their experience of living with an NHS hearing aid.

“The survey,  which has been produced in partnership with patients, doesn’t take much time to complete, is confidential, and will help us understand what people who use NHS hearing aid services think about those services.  Our vision for people with age related hearing problems is for them to receive, high quality, efficient services delivered closer to home, with short waiting times which are highly responsive to their needs.

“We are looking to ensure that patients over 50 with age related hearing loss have a comprehensive patient-centred integrated adult hearing service which will include the provision of hearing aids for age-related hearing loss in line with national guidance and local requirements.

“We think that there is significant variation in the service arrangements, quality and the outcomes for the over 50s who use NHS hearing aid services across Lancashire and South Cumbria.   So that’s why we are asking NHS hearing aid users over the age of 50 with age related hearing loss for their views about NHS hearing aid services”.

People over 50 with age related hearing loss, can currently chose to obtain an NHS hearing aid, following a referral from their GP from their local NHS Trust or from high street retail providers . Services include:

  • Audiology (hearing tests and assessments)
  • Provision and fitting of hearing aids,
  • Patient education, including self-care advice and information,
  • Follow up appointments and after care,

People using NHS hearing aids, over the age of 50 or relatives or carers can complete the questionnaire online : https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/NHS_hearing_aids or can contact 01282 644 627 to obtain help to complete the survey.