Are you looking after someone in the role of a Carer?
Many people at some point provide unpaid care for someone who is older, disabled or seriously ill. Carers Rights Day brings together organisations from across the UK to provide carers with information, advice and support.
This year’s theme is Know Your Rights. The Looking after Someone Guide 2020-2021 gives carers the practical and financial support available to them every year.
Wiltshire Health and Care has already taken several steps to support carers but we want to do even more.
So far we have:
- Proudly achieved accreditation as a “Working For Carers” Employer and developed a WHC Carers Charter
- Championed flexible working where possible, particularly during the pandemic and updated our Flexible Working Policy to confirm the right to flexible working requests for those individuals who are Carers
- Developed a Managers Guide to supporting Carers in the Workplace
- Invested in an additional and new Employee Assistance Programme for staff which can provide 24/7 personal help and support as well as advice and information on different areas of wellbeing
Key tips and support available for Carers:
- Get a benefits check
Carer’s Allowance is known as the main benefit for carers. But not everyone is eligible to claim it, so it’s a good idea to arrange a benefits check to see what financial support you may be entitled to. You can also use the Turn2us benefits calculator on our website: carersuk.org/benefits-calculator
For information about what financial support is available, visit carersuk.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org, visit the Turn2us website or contact your local Citizens Advice.
- Find out about practical support
You may need practical support to help you care, like short breaks, equipment to help make caring easier or information about local groups that can help.
All carers are entitled to a carer’s assessment from their local council which could lead to you receiving extra support from social care services to help with caring.
Contact your local council/trust social services department for a carer’s assessment or visit carersuk.org/assessment for more information.
- Connect with other carers
When we’re looking after someone, it’s not always easy to find people who really know what caring is like and are able to give us help and understanding. There are carer support groups across the UK that can help you meet other carers, as well as access local advice and support. Carers UK’s website has a directory of local services at carersuk.org/localsupport
The Carers Support Wiltshire leaflet contain further information.
Many carers also find online forums a huge source of support – a place where you can share what’s on your mind, anytime of the day or night, with other carers who understand what you are going through. Find out more about the Carers UK Forum at carersuk.org/help-and-advice/get-support/carersuk-forum
Carers Support Wiltshire has also produced this useful guide on helping to ease the discharge process.
Over the next 16 days we will be helping to raise awareness of domestic abuse in young people’s relationships. Wiltshire has identified the impact of domestic abuse on young people and have developed resources to raise the profile of the issues found within this group.
Young people are surprisingly tolerant of violence in relationships, with 1 in 5 young men and 1 in 10 young women, who think that abuse and violence against young women is acceptable.
We do have the opportunity to influence teenagers if their views are not entrenched.
Abuse in relationships can happen to anyone regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation and family situation. Teenage relationship abuse can often be hidden, because teenagers typically:
- Have little experience of relationships
- Can be under pressure from peers to act cool
- Have ‘romantic’ views of love.
The likely consequences of teenage relationship abuse:
- Violence and abuse can have a long term impact on the teenagers’ physical and mental health.
- It may lead to depression, obesity, substance misuse and sexually risk taking behaviours.
- Sexual abuse can lead to early and unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.
Teenage Relationship Abuse: A parent and carers guide to violence and abuse in teenage relationships can be viewed here
In schools, teenagers will receive lessons addressing the issues around domestic abuse as part of the PSHE curriculum and teachers will have the opportunity to attend a virtual session with the Independent Domestic Abuse adviser for Young People in Wiltshire.
If you or your family are affected by domestic abuse please phone the numbers advertised below.
Contact details for support across Swindon and Wiltshire can be found here.
At this time of year we celebrate our long serving volunteers who have dedicated their time and commitment to supporting community hospitals across Wiltshire. Volunteers make a difference in so many ways; helping to improve the patient experience and supporting staff. We give our thanks to all of our volunteers and our appreciation for their achievements.
Due to the current restrictions we were unable to host our annual presentation ceremony this year, however we will invite this year’s long serving volunteers to join next year’s event.
This year we have sent certificates and our thanks to the following people – who’s combined time volunteering totals an incredible 110 years!
Sandra Burcham – Chippenham Hospital – Admin
Judy Morris – Chippenham Hospital- Gardening
Anna Davis – Chippenham Hospital – Ward
Julie Bennett – Trowbridge Hospital – Admin
Lucy Elms – Chippenham Hospital – Pets as Therapy
Barbara Paine – Warminster Hospital – Admin
Ann Johnson – Chippenham Hospital – Ward & Trolley Shop
Christine Reed – Warminster Hospital – Trolley Shop
Peggy Birdseye – Warminster Hospital – Trolley Shop
Susan Twiddy – Warminster Hospital – Ward & Trolley Shop
Bobbie Slade – Savernake Hospital – Physio Inpatients Team
Lesley Lacey – Warminster Hospital – originally helped with Hospital Fetes then set up the hospital trolley shop
Suzanne Bennett, Voluntary Services Coordinator at Wiltshire Health and Care said: “I am always amazed by the effort, time and commitment of volunteers who selflessly dedicate their free time for their community hospitals”.
Hanna Mansell, Head of People at Wiltshire Health and Care added: “We give our thanks to all our volunteers who continue to dedicate their time to supporting all types of services across Wiltshire Health and Care. These individuals have selflessly worked with us, and this is an opportunity to show our gratitude, especially in these challenging times.”
Thank you to all of our volunteers for the great work that they do and the difference they make to our patients and staff.
Thank you to the Friends of Warminster Hospital who have kindly donated an interactive multi-sensory projector to Longleat Ward.
The OMI Mobii projector has made a big difference to our patients and their experience on the ward.
Charlotte Aldridge, Activities Coordinator on Longleat Ward said: “The Friends of Warminster Hospital are a wonderful support to our hospital, patients and the community. Our patients and staff have absolutely loved getting to use the new addition to the ward.”
Thank you to the Friends of Warminster Hospital for your continued support.
New Director of Quality, Professions & Workforce
Sara Quarrie has been appointed as our new Director of Quality, Professions and Workforce and takes up her post on 1 October 2020. Sara has an Occupational Therapy background and joins us from Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust, where she held the position of Division Head of Professional Staffing and Nursing.
Douglas Blair, Managing Director said: “I am delighted to welcome Sara to the Wiltshire Health and Care team. She will build on our strong focus on quality, lead our increased focus on professional leadership and also oversee our continuing work on developing and building our workforce. I am sure she will receive a warm welcome to the team, and to Wiltshire.”
Sara said: “I am really excited to be joining the Wiltshire Health and Care team. I look forward to facing the challenges of the future with you all, and to making my home in the lovely county of Wiltshire.”
Trowbridge Minor Injury Unit to re-open for booked appointments
The Minor Injury Unit (MIU) at Trowbridge Community Hospital will start to receive referrals from NHS 111 and GPs from Monday 28 September 2020.
Trowbridge MIU will have appointments available 7 days a week from 10:00 hrs – 1800 hrs for patients who have contacted NHS 111 either by phone or online and are referred for an MIU appointment. It will not be open to ‘walk in’ patients and there will be no x-ray facility on site. This change in service has been designed to maintain the safety of patients and staff and is in line with the national campaign to ‘Think 111 First’.
Patients will not be able to directly book an appointment. NHS 111 will continue to triage all appointments and if a patient meets the criteria they will be referred to the unit and a member of staff will call them back to arrange an appointment. Anyone with a life threatening condition should call 999.
Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should not attend any medical setting unless explicitly directed to do so by the NHS 111 service or a 999 call operator.
Minor Injury Units offer a facility for treating injuries that are not serious, such as sprains and strains; minor burns and scalds, wound infections, insect and animal bites, and minor injuries to the eye, head. They are not specifically equipped to treat more serious conditions such as stab wounds or chest pains.
Douglas Blair, Managing Director of Wiltshire Health and Care, which runs the MIUs in Chippenham and Trowbridge, said: “Keeping our patients and staff safe and ensuring people get the right care, at the right time in the right place is our priority. We are now in a position to re-open Trowbridge MIU for booked appointments. This system has worked well at Chippenham MIU and reflects the national move to Think 111 First. Our team are ready to respond to your needs, if you remember to contact NHS 111 online or by phone first”.
Trowbridge MIU closed in April after a decline in the number of patients attending since the start of the COVID-19 crisis. Staff employed at the units were redeployed to help look after patients across the local health and care system.
Supporting patients with respiratory disease to keep active
Wiltshire Health and Care has teamed up with the West of England Academic Health Science Network in a pilot project to encourage respiratory patients in South Wiltshire to keep active during the pandemic.
Using the KiActiv® solution, patients who are on the waiting list for pulmonary rehabilitation due to COVID-19 are being supported to increase their activity through the use of a daily tracker and make some lifestyle changes in order to keep their muscles moving.
Lisa Miller, Respiratory Clinical Lead at Wiltshire Health and Care said: “Many of our most vulnerable patients have been shielding due to COVID-19, and the consequences of inactivity over a long period of time can be significant. We want to build confidence in our patients, so that they accept they will become breathless during periods of increased activity and that this is healthy.”
KiActiv® Health incorporates behaviour change technology in an interactive personalised dashboard that uses data from an accurate activity tracker and dedicated mentor support over 12 weeks. It is focused on everyday physical activity, promoting opportunities to be active across all ~112 waking hours a week, rather than 1-2 hours of an exercise intervention, with no barriers to age or mobility. During the 12 weeks participants are supported by phone calls with a trained KiActiv® mentor at key times in the programme. The calls help participants build an understanding of the value of their daily activities and the confidence to plan, monitor and improve, without compulsion or prescription. At the end of the 12 weeks the participants will have continued access to their personal dashboard and activity monitor to enable them to continue their self-management and the changes to their daily routines.
KiActiv® has already been commissioned in Gloucestershire to support those with type 2 diabetes and other long term conditions and is currently being evaluated for use in COPD through the Moving to Better Health: Bristol project.
Talk before you walk: Chippenham Minor Injury Unit open for appointments issued by NHS111
The Minor Injury Unit (MIU) at Chippenham Community Hospital is now open for people who have rung NHS 111 and been given an appointment to attend.
This change in service is in line with the national ‘Talk before you Walk’ initiative designed to keep patients and staff safe and avoid lots of un-well people sitting together in a waiting room. Patients should not ‘walk in’ without an appointment and appointments can only be issued by NHS 111 or a doctor.
An initial telephone assessment by NHS 111 means that patients receive the individual care they need quickly, by the right healthcare professional, in the right place. A patient could be given an appointment to attend MIU or if they have an illness directed to their GP surgery. It could be that the local pharmacist may be able to help.
Chippenham MIU has appointments available from Monday – Friday 10:00hrs – 18:00hrs. There is currently no x-ray facility on site. MIU is a nurse led facility for treating injuries that are not serious, such as sprains and strains; minor burns and scalds, wound infections, insect and animal bites, and minor injuries to the eye, head. They are not specifically equipped to treat more serious conditions and our community hospitals do not routinely have doctors on site.
Anyone with a life threatening condition should call 999. Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should not attend any medical setting unless explicitly directed to do so by the NHS 111 service or a 999 call operator.
Douglas Blair, Managing Director of Wiltshire Health and Care, which runs the MIUs in Chippenham and Trowbridge, said: “We continually review our services to ensure that our frontline clinical staff are available to provide care for those who need it most and patient safety is at the heart of our service delivery. Chippenham MIU is open for booked appointments and, once we are assured that the system is working well, we will reopen the MIU at Trowbridge Community Hospital on the same appointment basis.”
Chippenham MIU closed in April after a decline in the number of patients attending since the start of the COVID-19 crisis. Staff employed at the unit were redeployed to help look after patients across the local health and care system.
Richard Barritt re-appointed as Patient Voice Representative to WHC Board
The Wiltshire Health and Care (WHC) Board unanimously voted for Richard Barritt to be re-appointment as Patient Voice Representative for a further 3 year term. As a Non-Executive Board member, Richard will lead on patient engagement and oversee the implementation of our Patient and Public Involvement Plan.
Richard said: “I’m delighted to have been reappointed and grateful to my Board colleagues for their faith in me. COVID-19 has understandably paused our patient engagement work, but I believe there is a real opportunity now to rethink the way we engage with the communities we serve. As we work out what the new normal looks like and how to stay prepared to deal with any new surge whilst re-establishing services, it’s vital that we hear from patients what they too have learned from the crisis about how we can tailor our services safely to their needs.”
Richard added: “One of the lovely things about being an NHS Non Executive Board member is the pride you feel as you see your colleagues rising to the challenge, and challenges don’t come any tougher than this pandemic. Across WHC the response of staff has been truly inspiring, as have our patients accepting treatment being put on hold, carers who have faced so many extra burdens and our communities across Wiltshire that have rallied in support.”
Richard and new WHC Chair Steve Ladyman are looking forward to visiting a number of sites this week, where they will be listening hard to what staff and patients have experienced and how they see the future.
If you would like to be involved in patient and public involvement or have any experiences that you would like to share, please email email@example.com
Easy read version of our Delivery Plan 2020-2023 is now available
Our Community Team for People with Learning Disabilities (CTPLD) has produced a brilliant easy read version of our Delivery Plan 2020-2023, which sets out our ambitions over the next three years.
‘Easy read’ refers to the presentation of text in an accessible, easy to understand format. It is often useful for people with learning disabilities, and may also be beneficial for people with other conditions affecting how they process information.
The easy read Wiltshire Health and Care Delivery Plan 2020-2023 can be found here
CTPLD supports people who have a learning disability, are over 18 years old and need support to live or to manage their lives. We work closely with individuals and their carers, to help maintain or improve their quality of life, health and wellbeing. This service is provided jointly with our Wiltshire Council Adult Social Care colleagues.
The team also support carers, other health professionals and providers with managing people’s health needs.
The service can be accessed following a referral from a health care professional.
Wiltshire Council Adult Care: 0300 456 0111
(Please ask to speak with a member of CTPLD Health)