There are currently 6.5 million carers in the UK who are looking after a family member or friend who has a disability, mental or physical illness or who needs extra help as they grow older.
This Carers week, running from 10th – 16th June, aims to support carers to get connected to their communities, helping them to get the support they need and deserve. This could include employers creating carer-friendly policies, GP practices offering annual health checks or alternative appointment times or even leisure centres offering special deals for carers.
What is a carer?
A carer is someone who provides unpaid care and support to a family member or friend who has a disability, menta or physical illness, substance misuse issue, or who needs extra help as they grow older.
For some taking on a caring role can be sudden; someone in your family has an accident or your child is born with a disability.
For others, caring responsibilities can grow gradually over time: your parents can’t manage on their own any longer; your partner’s or your child’s mental or physical health gradually worsens.
The amount and type of support that carers provide varies considerably. It can range from a few hours a week, such as picking up prescriptions, preparing meals or cleaning to providing emotional or personal care day and night.
Without the right support caring can have a significant impact.
If you or someone you know cares for someone and you would like to find out more about available support and benefits, check out these helpful websites for information.
If you are adventuring abroad for your Summer holiday this year, depending on where you are going you may need to be vaccinated against some serious diseases found in other parts of the world.
In the UK, childhood vaccinations protect you against a number of diseases, but don’t cover most of the infectious diseases found overseas. If you are unsure what vaccinations, if any, you need for your holiday, you can check the Fit to Travel website and the Travel Health Pro website to find out more.
You can also speak to your GP Practice receptionist who will advise you who you need to book an appointment with to discuss your travel vaccination requirements.
Please be aware that it is best to look into this approximately 8 weeks before you are due to travel as some vaccines are required to be given well in advance to allow your body to develop immunity.
Please note that not all vaccinations are available free on the NHS, even if they’re recommended for travel to a certain area. For more information you can visit the NHS Choices Website.
This week is Cervical Cancer Prevention week, a week dedicated to reminding ladies to book their smear tests and not to be embarrassed about the process.
Cervical screening prevents 75% of cervical cancers from developing, yet one in four women in the UK don’t attend.
Cervical Screening is the method of detecting abnormal cells on the cervix. Being screened regularly means any abnormal changes in the cells can be identified and if necessary, treated to stop cancer developing.
All women in the UK aged 25 to 49 are invited for a screening test every three years and those aged 50 to 64 are invited every five years.
What happens when you go for your cervical screening?
The screening test usually takes around 5 minutes to carry out.
You’ll be asked to undress from the waist down and lie on a couch, although you can remain fully dressed if you are wearing a loose skirt/dress.
The nurse or doctor will gently put an instrument called a speculum into your vagina, this holds the walls of the vagina open so the cervix can be seen.
The nurse or doctor will then use a small soft brush to gently collect some cells from the surface of your cervix. Although the procedure can be a little uncomfortable, it shouldn’t be painful. However, if you do find it painful let the doctor or nurse know as they may be able to reduce your discomfort.
Once the sample is taken, the doctor or nurse will close the curtain allowing you to dress whilst they prepare the sample to be sent off to the laboratory.
The cell sample is then sent off to a laboratory for analysis and you should receive the result within 2 weeks.
Many women are nervous and embarrassed about the process of cervical
screening, but there is no need to be, nurses and doctors carry out these tests
You can minimise your worries when you book your appointment by requesting a female nurse or doctor to carry out the test. You are also welcome to bring a chaperone to your appointment too.
With the cold weather setting in this week, it’s important to take extra care to make sure you stay fit and healthy. Those with long-term respiratory problems need to take extra care as the damp, cold conditions can make you more vulnerable to catching those pesky winter bugs.
If you start to feel unwell, even if it’s a cough or a cold, don’t wait until it gets more serious. Seek advice from your Pharmacist.
Follow these simple tips below to help you and your loved ones to stay fit and well over this cold snap.
There has been a rise in the number of flu cases in the local area, therefore we are urging patients living in South Cheshire and Vale Royal that it is not too late to get their flu vaccination.
Latest reports from Public Health England show that flu is now circulating in the local area and a small but growing number of cases have been confirmed by Leighton Hospital in Crewe.
A flu vaccine is available free of charge for anyone over the age of 65, pregnant women, those with a serious long-term health condition, those living in a long-stay residential care home, and those who receive a carer’s allowance/are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person.
If you are eligible for the flu vaccine on the NHS, contact your GP Practice now to book.
NHS 111 is now available online, providing people with fast and convenient access to urgent health advice digitally.
NHS 111 online offers people an alternative to the 111 phone service, as well as helping to manage increasing demand on the telephone service – but please note it does not replace the phone service.
How does it work
To access the service simply visit 111.nhs.uk, enter your age, sex, postcode and main symptom, and then you will be guided through a series of questions about your health problems.
At the end of the questions you will be given advice about the best course of action to take next, which could be:
Now is the perfect time to check your first aid kit is well stocked for Winter to help you and your family self care for minor illnesses and injuries. There are a number of things you can have in your first aid kit for any such eventualities:
Your local Pharmacy is a great place to stock up on all the above items and you can find your nearest one and view their opening hours at NHS Choices.
Please remember to make sure your first aid kit is kept in a cool, dry place out of the reach of children.
Future issues of Prescriptions will be for 2 months.
This is with the exception of any Controlled Drug Prescriptions.
If you wish to discuss this please contact the Prescribing Team.