Malmesbury Medical Partnership rated outstanding following inspection

A Wiltshire GP practice, Malmesbury Medical Partnership has been rated ‘Outstanding’ following a recent inspection on 3 March 2016, by the Care Quality Commission.

The practice, which looks after more than 15,000 patients, is awarded an outstanding rating for effective services, services that are responsive to people’s needs and services that are well-led. They are rated as good for safe and caring services and the practice is rated as outstanding overall.

Commenting on the rating, Dr Geoff Payne, Medical Director for NHS England, South (South Central) said:
“The CQC inspections ensure that every patient receives consistently high quality care and we are delighted that Malmesbury Medical Partnership has been recognised as delivering an outstanding service to their patients.

“The practice was found to use innovative and proactive approaches to improve patient outcomes and work with other local providers to share best practice. For example the practice worked with other stakeholders to collaborate and then introduce an in-house frail elderly service. The practice also works proactively with its patients and was found to make changes to services following feedback from patients and its patient participation group.

“This outstanding rating is a great achievement for staff at Malmesbury Medical Partnership.”

Dr Peter Jenkins, Chair , Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group said:
“This is a fantastic outcome for Malmesbury Medical Partnership and we are very pleased to see the Practice achieve an Outstanding rating in the CQC’s latest report.  All member practices are encouraged to look for new and innovative ways of working which place the patient at the heart of practice decisions and we are delighted to see Malmesbury Medical Partnership recognised for its hard work and dedication. Well done to the whole team.”
Mr David Grogan, Managing Partner at Malmesbury Medical Partnership said:
“We are very pleased to receive this outstanding rating from CQC and would like to thank our staff and patients for their continued help and support. It is really heartening to see both our services and our proactive work such as the initiative with the local council to introduce an in house art programme, being recognised in this way. We are committed to ensuring the primary care service we provide is of the best possible quality and will continue to work hard for the benefit of our patients.”

The CQC particularly highlighted the following areas of outstanding practice at Malmesbury Medical Partnership:

  • Staff were found to raise any concerns, incidents or near misses and all learning opportunities from internal and external incidents were maximised
  • Staff used innovative and proactive approaches to improve patient outcomes. For example working with other stakeholders to introduce an in-house elderly frail service.
  • The practice also works with the local community to plan how services can best meet patient’s needs. For example, they worked with the local council to introduce an in house art programme. They also worked with the local wildlife trust to develop opportunities for patients with mental health issues.
  • The practice was found to work proactively with its patients and patient participation group (PPG), making changes to services following suggestions from patients and its PPG.
  • The practice was also found to actively review complaints and ensure they are responded to and changes are implemented where appropriate leading to improvements.

To read the full CQC quality report into Malmesbury Medical Group visit http://www.cqc.org.uk/

Have your say on carers’ strategy

People are being asked to have their say on a new draft strategy which aims to support carers and ensure their contributions are valued and their voices heard.

Wiltshire Council and NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group have developed a new strategy for carers in consultation with other strategic partners.

The draft strategy has also been worked on with carers and they have helped develop a series of outcomes that they hope the strategy will help them achieve.

The strategy is for all carers. A carer is someone of any age, including a child (young carer), who provides unpaid support to a family member or friend who could not always manage without this help. This could include caring for a relative (a parent, grandparent, sibling, child, spouse, partner) or friend who is ill, frail, disabled or who has mental health or substance misuse problems. It is important to remember that anyone can become a carer.

Members of the public, especially carers, are being encouraged to comment on the draft strategy to influence the future commissioning of support for carers in Wiltshire.

Wiltshire Council corporate director Maggie Rae said:
“Carers carry out such an important role in our communities and we want to ensure they are fully supported.

“I would encourage as many people as possible to get involved in this consultation as we want this strategy to be as effective as it can be and strongly represent the views of carers.”

Wiltshire Council cabinet member for public health Keith Humphries said:
“With changes taking place in the adult care sector, this strategy is timely and will help to ensure carers feel fully supported in their important roles.

“I’m really pleased we have been able to engage with carers in developing a strategy which has their needs at the very heart of it.”

Ted Wilson, Director Community and Joint Specialist Commissioning at Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning comments:
“Carers are an integral part of our health and social care environment. Without the support of loved ones and friends many individuals would struggle to cope with day to day life. These essential, voluntary roles are so important and it is through the Wiltshire Carers strategy that we can ensure that carers in Wiltshire are fully supported. By developing the strategy in collaboration with people who care for relatives or friends, we can put in place the right support for all 47,000 carers in the county.”

The full draft strategy can be viewed here.

People should feedback their comments by 13 July 2016 to Karen Walters, Community Commissioner (Carers) at: County Hall, Bythesea Road, Trowbridge BA14 8JN or email karen.walters@wiltshire.gov.uk

Advice to patients during the industrial action Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 April 2016

The NHS is working hard to ensure that as few patients as possible are affected by the industrial action planned for Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 April 2016, but some services will need to change. Alternative additional services have been put in place to meet patient demands. Please visit www.nhs.uk/strike to search for the extra services being provided in Wiltshire.

Read more to find out how you can access NHS services on these days. It is especially important if you have a long-term health condition or you look after people in vulnerable groups – such as the elderly and young children – that you know what to do on the days of the industrial action.

Planned operations/procedures and outpatients appointments

If you have a planned operation/procedure or outpatient appointment on one of the days when the industrial action is taking place, your hospital will contact you if it needs to be rearranged. If you have not been contacted by the hospital you should first check the hospital website for additional advice.

GPs

Your GP practice will be open and working as normal on the days of the industrial action. Given that GPs may experience greater demand than normal on these days, we strongly recommend that you contact them early if you need advice or an appointment.

A&E

Accident and Emergency departments will be open for patients with serious and life threatening conditions, with essential care being provided by senior staff. As is always the case to ensure that hospitals can treat those who most need it, only those patients with serious and life threatening conditions should visit their A&E.

Other medical needs

If you become ill on these days with a non-urgent condition and need advice, please visit www.nhs.uk, or go to your local pharmacist. If you need medical help fast but it’s not an emergency call 111, or contact your GP.

Single point of contact to keep people warm and safe

Wiltshire residents now have a single point of contact to provide support, help and guidance to people living in cold homes and those struggling to keep on top of bills.

Funded by the British Gas Energy Trust, Wiltshire Council will work with the Royal College of General Practitioners and the Centre for Sustainable Energy, to build on the council’s existing Warm and Safe energy advice service which is run jointly with Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service. People are being encouraged to contact the service now to reduce household energy costs for the year ahead and get homes prepared for next winter.

There will be an improved referral system and even more people will be able to benefit from the service. People who are on low incomes, elderly, disabled and suffering in a cold home will get the support they need – quickly and efficiently.

A number of health conditions can be exacerbated by living in cold, damp homes. These include asthma, hypertension and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

The Warm and Safe Wiltshire advice service provides information and support to all residents across Wiltshire who are looking to make their homes warmer and more comfortable as well as providing advice on how people can reduce their energy bills, home fire safety advice and sign posting to other relevant services. Warm and Safe Wiltshire can search for funding for heating and insulation improvements as well as providing home visits to those who need advice and support the most.

Maggie Rae, Wiltshire Council corporate director, said:
“Winter can be a tough time for many but this enhanced joined-up service means that more people will get vital support to help keep them warm in their homes.”
Keith Humphries, Wiltshire Council cabinet member for public health, said:
“We are pleased to be part of this partnership helping provide vital support to those who need it most. We want people to feel comfortable, safe and warm in their own home and this partnership will help more people do that.”
Phillip Morris, Senior Development Manager at the Centre for Sustainable Energy said:
“It is great to be working so closely with the council and in particular the public health team on this project. The project is an excellent example of how well a number of different organisations can work together to provide support to those people who are struggling to heat their homes to a healthy level.”
Dr Tim Ballard, Vice Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said:
“As GPs, we look at the physical, psychological, and social factors affecting a patient’s health before we make a diagnosis – and the conditions someone lives in can be key to their overall health and wellbeing.

“If people are living in cold homes, then it makes sense that they will be more susceptible to health problems associated with cold weather, for example respiratory problems such as COPD. It has been frustrating during my career, when my clinical opinion has been that a patient’s health might improve if they lived in a drier, warmer and potentially safer home, but the relevant support has been lacking.

“Pilot schemes have shown a link between initiatives that address fuel poverty and cold homes and a decrease in both GP appointments and hospital admissions, so I am delighted that the College is involved in this important advice and referral scheme in Wiltshire, where I practise.

“This Warm and Safe Wiltshire scheme will not only help the patients concerned, but it may well lead to a decrease in workload for GPs and our teams, who are currently facing intense resource and workforce pressures. We look forward to an evaluation of this pilot scheme in due course to assess the benefits and see if there is scope to roll this out further.”

For more information about the service and how they can benefit people are encouraged to visit www.warmandsafewiltshire.org.uk for all the information they need.

End

New provider for Wiltshire’s Children’s Services

A new Wiltshire-focused NHS service for children, young people and families has launched this week. Delivered by Virgin Care the new Wiltshire Children’s Community Health Service will provide consistent and equitable levels of service and support to children and their families no matter where they live in the county.

Community child health services in Wiltshire were previously provided by five separate organisations.  As well as providing a fair and equitable service, the new Wiltshire Children’s Community Health Service, provided by Virgin Care will improve communications between services to enhance the experience for children, young people and families by responding directly to the needs of Wiltshire’s community.

Virgin Care will provide services like speech and language therapy, learning disability nursing and school nursing, among others, to children and young people in Wiltshire.

Virgin Care has a strong track record of delivering NHS services over the last decade, having seen more than four million NHS patients since then.  The organisation currently delivers Integrated Children’s Services in Devon and adult community services elsewhere, alongside various community treatment services across England and GP surgeries. In Devon, Virgin Care brought together health and social care services for children when it took over delivery of those services in 2012.

Jayne Carroll, Virgin Care’s Regional Director, says:
“Since we were named preferred bidder we’ve been working alongside the existing providers and with the very talented colleagues to ensure that the service was ready to go on day one with as few changes to the services families receive as possible.

“Over the coming months we’ll continue that work to make sure the transition to the Virgin Care-provided service is as smooth as possible for children and young people.

“Things won’t change overnight but we’re committed to continuing to listen to feedback from children, young people and families in order to build a truly Wiltshire-focused service which serves the needs of the people who use it.”

Corporate Director for Wiltshire Council, Carolyn Godfrey, Deborah Fielding Accountable Officer for NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group and Debra Elliott Director of Commissioning for NHS England jointly comment:
“Bringing together community child health services from across the county under one provider was a key priority for us. We want to ensure that every child in Wiltshire has the same access to services regardless of where they live in the county.

“Virgin Care’s plans to utilise digital technology to enhance communication will allow health care practitioners more time with children and their parents or carers. We are confident that Virgin Care can deliver services to our children that reflect their needs, are closer to home and are of the highest standard.”

Colleagues working for the five previous providers who delivered these services have transferred to Virgin Care under TUPE rules which maintain their terms and conditions pay and pension. The majority of service users will see no change to the staff they see and where changes have happened this has already been discussed, and managed, over the past three months.

Notes to editors

  • Services provided in Swindon do not form part of the community child health services in Wiltshire contract

The following services are part of Wiltshire Community Children’s Health Services

  • Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting and School Nursing)
  • Children’s Community Nursing Service
  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Integrated Paediatric Therapy Service (Occupational therapy and Physiotherapy)
  • Family Nurse Partnership
  • Children’s Learning Disability Nursing
  • Community Paediatricians – including Designated Doctor LAC, Safeguarding and Child Death Review
  • Safeguarding Children Service
  • Looked after children’s Health Service
  • Portage (Pre-school educational play in South Wiltshire only)
  • Child Health Information Service

Better Care Plan continues strong progress

Wiltshire’s Better Care Plan, which underpins care and support in the county, continues to make strong progress and maintain its national reputation, with plans in place for that to continue in 2016/17.

This was highlighted in a report to Wiltshire Council leaders this week, which outlined how the plan will continue to support residents in the coming financial year.

The Better Care Plan was developed by the council and the NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in consultation with a wide range of local stakeholders.

It has already been held up as one of the top five care plans in the country and fast-tracked for sign-off by government ministers. The plan lays out how the council and the CCG will change how health and care services are provided, with the overriding focus being on ensuring people are cared for as close to home as possible, with home always the first option.

In a relatively short space of time the plan has had a positive impact. Over the past year the number of people who have been delayed in hospital has reduced significantly, with no delayed transfers of care at all in certain weeks. Recent figures show that in England the average for all delays has increased while in Wiltshire there has been a substantial decrease.

The national spending review confirmed the Better Care Fund will continue in 2016/17 and plans are now being put together on how this will be managed locally, with a proposed total Better Care Plan budget of almost £33m.

The performance targets for the plan in 2016/17 have also been set out. These include reducing permanent admissions to nursing and residential care, achieving the agreed dementia diagnosis rate for Wiltshire (which is 65%), continuing to reduce delayed transfers of care and ensuring high satisfaction with the services people receive.

Wiltshire Council corporate director, Maggie Rae, said:
“Our Better Care Plan is well established in Wiltshire and we will now build on what we have done so far and continue to deliver an effective, joined up service.

“The plan is about joint working with partners and provides the best opportunity for positive outcomes for vulnerable and elderly people.”

Wiltshire Council cabinet member for public health and adult care, Keith Humphries, said:
“We have made good progress and our plan continues to compliment and inform our way of working.

“Our adult social care staff have been integral to the positive performance since the plan has been in place and I’m sure going forward that will continue.”

NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group’s chief financial officer, Simon Truelove comments:
“It’s really encouraging to see that our plan is starting to deliver real results. The confirmation of the Better Care Plan funding for the next year means that we are able to continue making positive progress towards achieving our vision of providing care as close to home as possible. We have gone some considerable way in achieving this however, we cannot be complacent, NHS and local authority finances are extremely challenging, the success of the Better Care Plan is crucial to our future sustainability.”

Ends.

Notes to editors:

This week, Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board, who put the Better Care Plan in place, won ‘Effective Health and Wellbeing Board’ at the LGC Awards 2016.

The key national targets and indicators for the Better Care Plan for 2016/17 are:

  • Achieve reduction in non-elective admissions in local target set
  • Delivery of the 91 day indicator
  • Reduction in delayed transfers of care ( days and people ) in line with local target set
  • Reduction in permanent admissions to nursing and residential care in line with local target set
  • Achieve the agreed dementia diagnosis rate for Wiltshire which is 65%
  • Ensure there are fewer hospital admissions from nursing and care homes (local targets set for each GP locality area)
  • Ensure at least 85% of those patients surveyed express satisfaction with the integrated services they receive.

The Comprehensive Spending Review confirmed that the Better Care Fund will continue into 2016/17, with a mandated minimum of £3.9 billion to be deployed locally on health and social care through pooled budget arrangements between local authorities and clinical commissioning groups.

The Wiltshire Health and Wellbeing Board, CCG Governing Board, and the Better Care Plan Task Group will receive regular progress reports on the implementation of the plan.

Update on Adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) services in Wiltshire

We understand that you may have some concerns about adult ADHD services in Wiltshire. Here is an update to let you know what is happening currently:

The contract for adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) services in Wiltshire is held by Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust (AWP). The current contract will come to an end at the end of March.   We have negotiated a temporary adult ADHD contract with AWP to cover the period from 1 March 2016 until 31 August 2016. This extension will ensure that a large proportion of the current services can continue until we are able to review the whole contract, and a permanent two year contract can be agreed. The new contract will be in place by 1 September 2016. If we achieve this earlier you will, of course, be advised accordingly.

Until this time AWP will continue to provide an ongoing service for:

  • Existing patients who have already been assessed and diagnosed
  • Existing patients who require ongoing follow up and prescribing
  • Patients already being cared for under the shared care process
  • Urgent and/or prioritised new referrals as approved by the CCG Exceptions Panel

However, AWP will not be accepting new referrals unless identified as above.

We apologise for any worry or concern this may cause. We will be working with AWP to quickly resolve any issues over the next few weeks to allow new contract terms to be agreed. We will provide details of any changes to the adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) services in Wiltshire as soon as we are able.

 

Planned industrial strike action by junior doctors – 10 February 2016

Acute hospitals in our area (Great Western Hospital NHS Foundation Trust; Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust; Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust) have plans in place to minimise disruption during the industrial strike action scheduled to take place on 10 February 2016, by junior doctors in England. Patients who are affected by the strike action will have been notified directly by their health care provider. If you have not been contacted directly, you should attend your routine health appointments as usual.

Planned industrial strike action by junior doctors – 10 February 2016

Acute hospitals in our area (Great Western Hospital NHS Foundation Trust; Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust; Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust) have plans in place to minimise disruption during the industrial strike action scheduled to take place on 10 February 2016, by junior doctors in England. Patients who are affected by the strike action will have been notified directly by their health care provider. If you have not been contacted directly, you should attend your routine health appointments as usual.

NICE Question Time at Salisbury: Public Q&A with NICE’s Chief Executive and Chair

Are you interested in finding out how NICE guidance could help improve the health and wellbeing of people in Salisbury and the surrounding area? Do you want the chance to put questions to NICE’s Chief Executive, Chair and senior staff directly?

Then book your place today to attend NICE Question Time, and the NICE Public Board meeting on Wednesday 20 January 2016 at City Hall, Salisbury.

NICE Question Time is a unique event, giving you the opportunity to put questions directly to the NICE Chair, Chief Executive and other NICE senior staff. The event is open to all members of the public and the community and voluntary sector.

At the NICE Question Time in Salisbury and the Public Board Meeting, you can:

 Meet members of the NICE board and senior management team
 Hear the latest news from NICE
 Find out how NICE guidance can help you to reduce health inequalities in your area

Date: Wednesday 20 January 2016
Location: City Hall, Salisbury, Wiltshire
Time:
12.00 – 12.30 Buffet lunch
12.30 – 13.30 NICE Question Time
13.45 – 16.30 NICE Public Board Meeting

Who can attend?
The meeting is open to everyone: patients and the public; health and social care professionals; managers; commissioners; public health professionals and local government.

To book visit www.nice.org.uk/Salisbury2016

RUH Hopper bus service

In the UK the NHS has a duty to transport patients to hospital and Wiltshire CCG fulfils this duty with the Non Emergency Patient Transport (NEPT) service, which the CCG funds to the tune of £2.3million per annum.  The service covers the whole of Wiltshire and transports patients to the Royal United Hospital, Great Western Hospital and Salisbury Foundation Trust Hospital, managed through a contract with Arriva.

Wiltshire CCG has not withdrawn funding from the RUH Hopper Bus Service because the NHS has not funded that service since 2007.

The NEPT service was introduced in 2007.  All bookings are subject to assessment, to ensure the right sort of transport and the required levels of care are provided for patients during their journey.  The service is also provided for the patient’s carer where their particular skills or support is needed.  Where patients are not eligible for NEPT, they are signposted to other suitable transport providers within the community, such as the LINK service.

At its meeting in June 2015 the Joint Commissioning Board (JCB) agreed to provide funding from the Better Care Fund in 2015/16 for the continued operation of the RUH Hopper Bus Service for the remainder of the financial year.  This was a temporary solution, with the agreement that the situation would be subject to a review by Wiltshire Council to identify ways of reducing the cost of the service.

Whilst Wiltshire CCG regrets it is not in a position to be able to match-fund the Hopper service with Wiltshire Council, the CCG’s position has not changed since the NHS withdrew its funding in 2007.  The CCG maintains that the Hopper service does not provide an equitable service for all Wiltshire patients, and is restricted to transporting people to the Royal United Hospital only.  The NHS is under intense financial pressure and the CCG has no spare resource to be able to fund the Hopper service as well as the Wiltshire-wide Non Emergency Patient Transport Service, which, as well as taking people to the RUH, also transports people to Salisbury District hospital and Great Western Hospital.  Indeed, finding the funds required for the Hopper service would require the CCG to reduce clinical services currently provided for patients.

House of Lords acknowledge good work of CCG
Click here to read a letter of praise from the Lord Prior of Brampton, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for NHS Productivity on the progress and achievements of Wiltshire CCG to date.

How to access health care in Wiltshire this Christmas
With GP surgeries closed for several days over the festive period it’s vital that people who need help from NHS services this Christmas get the advice they need from the right person, in the right place, at the right time.

NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group is asking everyone to follow these three simple steps if they need help:

1. Ask your pharmacist
Pharmacists are experts in many aspects of healthcare and can offer advice on a wide range of long term conditions and common illnesses such as coughs, colds and stomach upsets.

You don’t need an appointment and many have private consultation areas so they are a good first port of call if you’re feeling unwell. Your pharmacist will tell you if you need further medical attention.

2. Call 111
If your GP surgery is closed and you’re not sure where to go then you should make a free phone call to NHS 111, which is available 24/7.

An adviser will ask you questions to assess your symptoms and then give you the advice you need or direct you to the best service for you in your area.

3. A&E and 999 are for life threatening emergencies
A&E departments and the ambulance service are for life threatening emergencies such as loss of consciousness, suspected heart attacks, breathing difficulties or severe bleeding that cannot be stopped. A&E is likely to be extremely busy over the holidays with long waiting times so please call NHS 111 for advice first if you are not sure where to go.

A list of opening times for GP surgeries, pharmacies, dentists and opticians in Wiltshire over the Christmas break can be found here.

Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board up for award

A board which helps health and social care services in Wiltshire work seamlessly together to support healthy, independent living has been nominated for a prestigious award.

Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board has been shortlisted in the ‘Effective Health and Wellbeing Board’ category for the Local Government Chronicle Awards 2016, with the winner due to be announced at a ceremony on 16 March 2016.

Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board brings together all the leaders of the health and social care system in Wiltshire. It is chaired by Baroness Scott of Bybrook OBE, leader of Wiltshire Council with Dr Peter Jenkins, Chair of NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), vice chair of the board.

The council and the CCG work closely together with partners through the board. NHS England is also represented together with Wiltshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner and Healthwatch Wiltshire.

The vision of the board is underpinned by recently agreed programmes such as the Better Care Plan, which was one of only five in the country to be fast tracked for sign off.

One particular success of the board’s work and Better Care Plan has been the ground-breaking work on developing an Urgent Care at Home plan which means professionals can facilitate rapid access to services 24 hours a day, seven days a week; and co-ordinate intermediate care and hospital discharge. The service provides health and social care support within one hour in times of crisis and helps prevent unnecessary hospital admissions. This has helped delayed transfers of care fall to zero in some months – a dramatic improvement on Wiltshire’s position.

Work is also continuing to make better use of estates, through the Health and Wellbeing Community Centres programme which will see vital health and care facilities co-located right at the heart of communities. This will lead to greater access to services for residents, as demonstrated at Springfield Community Campus in Corsham.

A recent positive independent peer review into the Health and Wellbeing Board stated: “You are doing all the right things and you are doing them well!”

Baroness Scott of Bybrook OBE, chair of the Health and Wellbeing Board and leader of Wiltshire Council said: “I’m delighted the board has been recognised in this way.

“Our strong partnership with NHS Wiltshire CCG and our others partners has seen some great improvements in the delivery of vital health and social care services and the benefits have been felt by residents up and down the county.

“However, we are not complacent and know there is still work to do. Together we will continue to strive to ensure that people of all ages who have health and social care needs get high quality joined-up support as quickly and efficiently as possible.”

Dr Peter Jenkins, Vice Chair of Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board and Chair of Wiltshire CCG comments: “The joint Health and Wellbeing Board provides a vital platform to ensure partnership working across health and social care and we’re encouraged by the transformational care we’ve established as a result. Our focus remains on continual improvement to ensure our vision to provide healthcare services as close to home as possible, is delivered.

“I’m pleased that our collaborative approach to health and social care  in Wiltshire has been recognised and I look forward to finding out in March if we’ve been successful.”

Ends

Notes to editors:

In shortlisting for the awards and deciding the winner, the panel will be judging nominees on:

  • Evidence of how health and social care commissioning has moved beyond their institutional boundaries
  • The extent to which the work of the board has had a demonstrable effect on outcomes
  • How HWBs’ vision has been translated into a set of effective priorities and actions

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New out of hours service for children in South Wiltshire

A new out of hours GP service for children in and around Salisbury has been launched this week. Parents of children aged 0-10 can now book a same day appointment to see a GP at the Salisbury Walk In Health Centre.

This extended service will provide out of hours GP health advice and treatment for minor illnesses and injuries and will provide parents with a local alternative to A&E when their child is ill.

Dr Chet Sheth, spokesperson for Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group and GP at St Anne Street practice comments: “We understand how worrying it is for parents to have a sick child especially when local GP surgeries are closed. Often the default for parents is to take their poorly child to A&E. This isn’t always the best place for them and quite often it’s local community health advice and treatment that is needed.

“This new out of hours service is designed to reduce some of the pressure seen at A&E over the winter months and to provide parents with accessible, local, health advice and treatment.

“At this stage this service is just a pilot, which will run until the end of March 2016. We’re hopeful that the pilot will see positive results both in take up and in reducing attendances at A&E for this particular age group.”

Parents should ring 111 in the first instance. If necessary the call handler will then advise parents to contact the Salisbury Walk In Centre to make a same day appointment. If however, your child has a serious or life threatening condition please call 999.

The service is available for children under 10 years old who live in the south of the county. The daily service will run Monday to Friday 18:00 – 22:00 and Saturday and Sunday 16:00  – 20:00. In the initial stages of the pilot during December the service will not run at the weekend. The Salisbury Walk in Centre can be found at Avon Approach, Salisbury, Wiltshire SP1 3SL.