You will have seen/heard that the Government is planning to ask those over 70 to stop social contact for a prolonged period.
The Minister for Health has emphasised that the Government have not yet decided when this period should start. Starting too early will prolong the period that over 70s need to ‘self-isolate’.
Those with heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, chronic lung disease and some cancers may be more suscetible to more severe affects of the virus and should take extra care to protect themselves.
The Prime Minister, supported by the Chief Scientific Advisor and the Chief Medical Officer announced new measures to limit the impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) this afternoon.
No new restrictions on events were announced. Schools are expected to continue to open as normal, unless advised otherwise by local public health officers.
Stay at home guidance for coronavirus symptoms
The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:
new continuous cough and/or
For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild infection
if you have symptoms of coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home and do not leave your house for 7 days from when your symptoms started. (See Ending Isolation section below for more information)
this action will help protect others in your community whilst you are infectious.
plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure that you can successfully stay at home.
ask your employer, friends and family to help you to get the things you need to stay at home.
stay at least 2 metres (about 3 steps) away from other people in your home whenever possible.
sleep alone, if that is possible.
wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water.
stay away from vulnerable individuals such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions as much as possible.
you do not need to call NHS111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 7 days contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, you should call NHS 111.
Those self-isolating with mild symptoms will not be tested.
Continue to good hygiene practice
The Chief Medical Officer emphasised that the most important thing for individuals to continue to use good hygiene practice previously recommended.
wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
always wash your hands when you get home or into work
use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
Transforming health and social care in Kent and Medway
Opens: 11 September 2019 Closes: 23 September 2019
The NHS in Kent and Medway is seeking your views on how health services are commissioned (planned and purchased).
At the moment we are one of eight GP-led clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) across Kent and Medway, responsible for planning and spending the health budget to meet local needs.
Although we and the other CCGs have much to be proud of over the last six years, the GPs who chair the CCGs, including our clinical chair, now believe the CCGs should merge to form a new single clinical commissioning group for Kent and Medway, which would also be led by GPs.
A single Kent and Medway CCG would:
provide a ‘bird’s eye view’ of health priorities for people across Kent and Medway based on a detailed understanding of local health needs, so that care can be planned effectively for everyone
identify where challenging health problems can be shared and tackled
allow the consistent commissioning of some services – such as cancer, mental health, children’s services and prevention – across Kent and Medway
focus on the health, wellbeing and care needs of the whole population
reduce management and administration costs across Kent and Medway.
There was a survey earlier this summer to get people’s initial views on the suggested changes. They include GP practices working much more closely together, and all the services in given areas (such as east Kent) joining up care for local people. Building on the feedback from that survey, we’d now like to find out your views about the specific proposal to create a single clinical commissioning group (CCG) for Kent and Medway.
In June, we published a leaflet Helping local people live their best life which set outs more details. This included a survey which ran until August, to get people’s initial views on the suggested changes. They include GP practices working much more closely together, and all the services in given areas (such as east Kent) joining up care for local people.
Building on the feedback from that survey, we’d now like to find out your views about the specific proposal to create a single clinical commissioning group (CCG) for Kent and Medway.
The survey is open until 23 September. Please complete it and share with your friends, colleagues and family as your views are important to us.
Do you want to have your say about new asthma services?
KSSAHSN* want to hear from you about your own experiences of healthcare and think about how technology could support you in managing and improving your health and well-being.
This workshop will be one of several, looking at new ways to improve the lives of people living with one or more conditions including asthma, cardiovascular disease, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and diabetes.
Thursday 26th September 2019,
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
The Kings Studio, Aylesford Village Community Centre, 25 Forstal Road, Aylesford, Kent, ME20 7AU
If you would like more information or to book a place, please contact:
* Kent Surrey Sussex Academic Health Science Network
Transforming health and social care in Kent and Medway
Opens: 10 August 2019 Closes: 23 August 2019
The NHS and local councils want to transform health and care services for children and young people and are calling on local people to get involved and help.
A recent Healthwatch survey showed children and young people in Kent and Medway want their voice to be heard when local services are designed, and the NHS has launched a survey to enable this. Dr Bob Bowes, a GP in Tunbridge Wells and Clinical Chair for Kent and Medway Sustainability and Transformation Partnership said: “We want local children, young people and their parents and carers to help us design services which are fit for the future to give children and young people the best start in life.
“They really can make a difference and we want suggestions for how we can improve.
“We need your help to tell us what already works well in the current system, and what doesn’t.”
The survey, which is open to children and young people from birth to 25 and their parents and carers, will help the NHS and local councils decide the priorities for future improvements to children’s services. The survey takes around 10 minutes to fill in and will close on Friday, 23 August.
The NHS is keen to get feedback from children and young people of all ages as well as their parents and carers.
Kent County Council and Medway Council are working together with the NHS to improve services.
Cllr Josie Iles, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Children’s Services, said: “We are pleased to be working with partners to further develop a collective understanding of the needs of children and young people in Kent and Medway.”
Opt-out organ donation: organs and tissues excluded from the new system
Department of Health and Social Care
Opened: 29 April 2019 Closes: 22 July 2019
This consultation is to ask you if the government is excluding the right organs and tissues from opt-out organ donation. We would like you to answer five questions about what you think should happen.
The government recently passed a law to change the rules for organ donation in England from 2020. The law introduced a system commonly called “opt-out” or “deemed consent”.
From 2020, everyone in England over the age of 18 will be considered to be in favour of donating their organs and tissue after death unless they:
have said they do not want to donate (opted out)
have appointed someone to decide for them after death
are in an excluded group
When the law was passing through Parliament, the government agreed that the law would only apply to routine transplants, and not novel or rare transplants.
The government proposes that novel or rare transplants will still require express consent. This means you or someone representing you must explicitly give permission for your organs or tissues to be donated for novel or rare transplants. Such transplants also cover what is called Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products (ATMP). This is when tissues, cells and genes are manipulated in a laboratory for treatment of a disease or injury. Some of the tissues and cells come from deceased donors.
This consultation is to ask you if the government is excluding the right organs and tissues. They would like you to answer five questions about what you think should happen.
Talking about mental health is not always easy. But starting a conversation doesn’t have to be awkward, and being there for someone can make a huge difference.
It’s important that conversations happen at times and in places that feel natural. Sometimes it’s easier to talk about our feelings when we are doing something else. Driving in the car; jogging around the park; eating breakfast in the cafe. The more typical the setting, the less unusual and uncomfortable the conversation can feel.
There is no right way to talk about mental health, but these tips will guide you to make sure you’re approaching it in a helpful way.
1. Ask questions and listen
Asking questions can give the person space to express how they’re feeling and what they’re going through, and it will help you to understand their experience better. Try to ask questions that are open and not leading or judgemental – such as “how does that affect you” or “what does it feel like?”
2. Think about the time & place
Sometimes it’s easier to talk side by side rather than face to face. So, if you do talk in person, you might want to chat while you are doing something else. You could start a conversation when you’re walking, cooking or stuck in traffic. However, don’t let the search for the perfect place put you off!
3. Don’t try & fix it
It can be hard to see someone you care about having a difficult time but try to resist the urge to offer quick fixes to what they’re going through. Learning to manage or recover from a mental health problem can be a long journey, and they’ve likely already considered lots of different tools and strategies. Just talking can be really powerful, so unless they’ve asked for advice directly, it might be best just to listen.
4. Treat them the same
When someone has a mental health problem , they’re still the same person as they were before. And that means when a friend or loved one opens up about mental health, they don’t want to be treated any differently. If you want to support them, keep it simple. Do the things you’d normally do.
5. Be patient
No matter how hard you try, some people might not be ready to talk about what they’re going through. That’s ok – the fact that you’ve tried to talk to them about it may make it easier for them to open up another time.
And there are lots of things you can do to support them even if you’re not talking:
Doing things together
Sending a text to let them know you’re thinking of them
Offering to help with day-to-day tasks.
Are you hoping to start a conversation today?Read Lauren’s 5 tips for starting a conversation about mental health Read Lauren’s tips
Time To Change
Mental health help and support services
If you’re experiencing mental health problems or need urgent support, there are lots of places you can go to for help.
Time to Change focuses on challenging stigma and discrimination in society, so they’re not able to provide individual or emergency support for people in crisis. But there are lots of people who can. They are listed here:
Provides confidential, non-judgemental emotional support for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those that could lead to suicide. You can phone, email, write a letter or in most cases talk to someone face to face.
Mind provides confidential mental health information services.
With support and understanding, Mind enables people to make informed choices. The Infoline gives information on types of mental health problems, where to get help, drug treatments, alternative therapies and advocacy. Mind works in partnership with around 140 local Minds providing local mental health services.
Provides expert advice and information to people with mental health problems and those who care for them, as well as giving help to health professionals, employers and staff. Rethink also runs Rethink services and groups across England.
The Mix provides judgement-free information and support to young people aged 13-25 on a range of issues including mental health problems. Young people can access the The Mix’s support via phone, email, webchat, peer to peer and counselling services.
ChildLine is a private and confidential service for children and young people up to the age of nineteen. You can contact a ChildLine counsellor for free about anything – no problem is too big or too small.
Live Well Kent helps people improve their mental and physical health and wellbeing. It is a free service for anyone over 17. Live Well Kent is delivered on behalf of Kent County Council and the NHS by two charities, Porchlight and Shaw Trust.