BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups to merge next April

Three groups responsible for the planning, buying and monitoring of health services in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire will become a single organisation in April 2020.

The merger, which has been given formal approval by NHS England and NHS Improvement today, follows a period of engagement with the public, staff, providers and other key stakeholders.

It has also been supported by GP practices in BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire as well as each CCG governing body.

The plan will have no effect on the way services are currently provided across the area but will reduce variation in care and standardise best practice so everyone can access high quality treatment and services, regardless of where they live. 

Working as one organisation will also help the CCG meet financial challenges through offering greater buying power, eliminating the duplication of administrative support functions and streamlining governance processes. The savings made can then be invested in frontline services or transformational projects. 

Tracey Cox, Chief Executive of the new BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said:

“Getting the go ahead to merge our three CCGs is very positive news. Coming together as a single CCG will allow health and care providers in B&NES, Swindon and Wiltshire to ensure we are reducing variation in the provision of services. We also want to concentrate on supporting people to stay healthy and tackle the causes of illness.

This merger will also allow us to meet financial challenges, for example through economy of scale cost-savings and the streamlining of governance and administration which means we can invest more of our budget into frontline services. 

I believe that as a single CCG, we will be in a stronger position to improve outcomes for patients, whilst still retaining our local voice.”

Elizabeth O’Mahony, NHS England and NHS Improvement South West Regional Director said:

“Bringing together Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire CCGs into one single, strategic organisation mirrors developments taking place across the NHS as health and care services move to work more closely together for the benefit of local people and employees.”

Wiltshire Pharmacy Opening Times for the August Bank Holiday

Opening times for your local pharmacy services on Bank Holiday Monday (26 August) are available below.
The pharmacies listed should be open on the dates as shown, the details are correct at the time published but are subject to change. You are advised to contact the pharmacy before attending to ensure they are open and have the medication you require.
 
Click here to view the downloadable PDF
 20190819-Wilts-August-BH-Pharmacy-Poster-2019-v1.0

Have you or someone you care for, recently left hospital?

The Local Government Association (LGA) is reviewing how health and care services in Bath and North East Somerset and Wiltshire are working together to support people when they leave hospital.

The LGA want to know what is and isn’t working well, so they can support health and care services and commissioners to identify what improvements need to be made in future.

Bath and North East Somerset CCG and Wiltshire CCG are helping the LGA to gather information on people’s experience on leaving hospital.

We would like to hear from you if –

  • you live in Bath and North East Somerset or Wiltshire and
  • you or the person you care for has had a stay in hospital while having treatment or recovering and left hospital within the last year.

 To share your experiences and views you can:

  •  Fill in our survey online or print out the survey form, fill it in and send it back to us. The survey closes on Monday 2 September 2019.
  •  Email yourvoice@nhs.net with anything you would like to say or call 01225 831 861.
  •  Take part in a group discussion at St Martins Hospital, Bath on Monday 23 September 2019. If you would like to join the group discussion, please email yourvoice@nhs.net or call 01225 831 861 to find out more.

Families encouraged to #wearitwell over the summer holidays

Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group is encouraging families in Wiltshire to #wearitwell and share photos of their summer holiday fun in the sun as a way of reminding others about the importance of sun protection.

The campaign aims to get people in Wiltshire to share the important health guidance from NHS England and NHS Improvement’s Cover Up Mate campaign amongst their friends and families by putting the guidance into practice and uploading their photographic evidence to Twitter using the hashtags #wearitwell and #coverupmate.

Dr Richard Sandford-Hill, GP at Market Lavington Surgery and Chair of Wiltshire CCG, explains:
“Each year we remind people about the importance of covering up in sun, but this year we thought we’d get the people of Wiltshire involved in helping to spread the health advice too!
“Getting sunburnt just once every two years can triple your risk of melanoma skin cancer, so it’s important that we make sure we take the necessary steps to be able to enjoy the sun safely and to prevent ourselves from sunburn. “Many people are unaware that you can still burn if it’s cloudy or overcast and while sunburn is usually short-lived and mild, it’s important to take precautions to avoid it because it can increase your chances of developing skin cancer later in life.”

How to protect yourself from sunburn

  • Cover up when you are out in the sun – wear loose clothing and a wide-brimmed hat to protect as much skin as possible and protect your eyes with sunglasses that block at least 99% of UV light.
  • Use a sun cream with an SPF of 30 or higher and at least 4-star UVA protection and reapply every two hours and after swimming.
  • Seek shade and limit your direct exposure to the sun, especially between 11am and 3pm when UV rays are at their strongest.
  • Avoid tanning beds and sunlamps – both cause serious long-term damage and contribute to skin cancer.

What to do if you have sunburn

  • Treat minor sunburn at home by cooling the skin down by having a cool bath or shower. Then apply soothing aftersun or calamine lotion
  • Drink plenty of fluids to help cool you down and prevent you from getting dehydrated. Painkillers such as ibuprofen or paracetamol will help relieve any pain.
  • Visit your pharmacist for advice on treatment to reduce your symptoms and reduce any inflammation.

If you start to feel unwell or have any concerns about your sunburn, particularly if you are burnt over a large area, have blistering or swelling of the skin, chills, dizziness, sickness or a high temperature of 38c or above, call NHS 111 – they are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If you notice any changes to your skin after being out in the sun, including a new mole, growth or lump or you have any moles or freckles that have changed in size, shape or colour, you should go and get them seen by your GP. Skin cancer is much easier to treat if it’s found early.

In the UK 86% of cases of melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer, could be prevented through enjoying the sun safely.

Find out more: http://www.wiltshireccg.nhs.uk/our-campaigns/wear-it-well-wiltshire

Health and care leaders in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire will be listening to views put forward by local residents as they draw up plans for the future.

Over 2000 people across the region have passed on their views about improving health and care services by answering questionnaires and attending events organised by local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and independent health champion Healthwatch.

Members of the public were invited to share their views as part of the Our Health Our Future campaign, organised by local CCGs, and the Healthwatch  #Whatwouldyoudo? campaign. The results of the Healthwatch survey have been published online.

The Healthwatch survey showed local people would like to see improved use of technology for booking appointments, more help for people to lead healthier lifestyles, shorter waiting times for access to GP appointments and for health professionals to have a better understanding of long-term health conditions such as autism.

The Our Health Our Future campaign closed on 31 July and collected responses from around 1600 people across Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire. Results from the survey will now be analysed by an independent researcher and will be shared with the public in the autumn.

Views collected from both campaigns will be used by health leaders as they draw up a plan for how health and care services across the region will be organised over the next five years

Dr Ian Orpen, Chair of the BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Board, said:
“We’d like to thank everyone who took the time to fill in the surveys and speak to us at events across the region over the past few weeks. “It’s clear that local people have strong views about how heath and care services should be organised in the future. We will listen to them and make sure we address their concerns as we draw up plans for how we organise services over the coming years.”
Carol Willis, Manager at Healthwatch Swindon said:
“The Government is investing an additional £20 billion a year until 2023 in the NHS to implement the vision laid out in the NHS Long Term Plan. We were asked to help find out what local people thought was the best way for the NHS in Bath & North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire to invest in the right services as part of this plan. “It was wonderful to listen to so many people keen to make a difference to our local NHS. These views are all in the report and we will now monitor how the local NHS responds.”

Red bags to help care home residents leave hospital sooner

A new innovative ‘red bag’ scheme launches on 1 August 2019 by Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) which is designed to help care home residents in Salisbury who are admitted to hospital, to receive improved care and reduce their length of stay in hospital.

Gill May, Executive Director of Nursing and Quality for Banes, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Groups said:
“The red bag is a simple initiative that enables a smooth handover from the care home to the ambulance and then to the hospital staff because all of the patient’s information and personal belongings are together in the red bag.

“It helps those who provide care at all stages of the patient’s journey to have immediate access to the information they need, and it will help patients to get home more quickly because the risk of misplacing their belongings is reduced.”

Lisa Wood, Paramedic from South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust said:
“Because the patient has all of their medical information easily accessible there in the bag, it will help our paramedics to triage the patients and make the right decisions for them more quickly before handing them over to the care of the hospital staff.”

Included in the red bag is a ‘this is me’ document, which provides information about the patient’s needs, interests, likes and dislikes, which helps those caring for them to do so on a more personal level.

While in hospital a patient will see different clinicians in different parts of the hospital. Their red bag stays with them throughout this journey meaning that those caring for them have immediate access to their up to date medical information and medication and the patient keeps their personal items with them.

The red bag stays with the patient until they are ready to go back to their care home and includes a copy of their discharge summary to help the care home staff to provide continuity of care for their resident.

Wiltshire CCG intends to provide red bags to care homes in the rest of the county by the end of this year.

Red bags were first introduced in Sutton CCG, London in November 2015 and so far the initiative has reduced hospital stays by 4.4 days per resident, saving £354,994 in 2017/18; stopped patients losing personal items such as dentures, glasses and hearing aids; and improved communication between care home and hospital staff saving time, resources and duplication.

Wiltshire CCG has taken elements from the Sutton CCG model and worked it into a project that is aimed at improving the experience, quality and safety of patient care, reducing pressure on A&E and supporting effective working relationships between care homes and health and social care organisations.

Awards Given to GP Practices Going Above and Beyond for Unpaid Carers

GP practices in Wiltshire going above and beyond for unpaid carers were recognised at the Carer Support Wiltshire Investors in Carers GP Accreditation Scheme Awards, which took place on Wednesday, 17th July at Devizes Town Hall.

The awards recognise and celebrate those Wiltshire GP practices who have met a number of requirements, including maintaining an
up-to-date carer’s register, having a carer’s lead, providing flexible appointments for carers and holding a minimum of one carer’s clinic per year. The clinics are run in partnership with the CSW Community Connector team.

This year saw 28 practices receiving the highest possible platinum award – up from 17 last year. The new platinum level was introduced in response to the outstanding support to carers provided by many GP Practices in Wiltshire.

The scheme aims to raise awareness of carers’ issues in GP practices and provide a system of awards to recognise their support to carers.

Gabby Wright, Practice Nurse at Trowbridge Health Centre said:
“The Carers GP Accreditation Scheme Awards are a great indication of how well supported Carers are through GP practices who are working alongside Carer Support, Wiltshire.

“It allows GP practices to all be held to the same high standards of support, which also means Carers throughout Wiltshire are able to find the information and help they require and it is readily available and easy to find.

“Here at Trowbridge Health Centre we are delighted that our hard work has been recognised with a platinum award for the second year running.”

According to a recent State of Caring Survey 2019, conducted by Carers UK of over 7,500 carers, 72% of carers responding said they had suffered mental ill health as a result of caring and 61% reported physical ill health as a result of caring. Almost two-thirds of carers (64%) say they have focused on the care needs of the person they care for and not on their own needs.

GP Practices continue to be the main source of referrals to CSW and are often the first point for a carer to acknowledge their caring role and access support. Holding carer clinics at GP surgeries in rural areas also means carers in isolated locations can access face to face support and information. From April 2018-March 2019 78 carer clinics were run at GP surgeries across Wiltshire, which assessed and supported the needs of 381 carers.

The awards were presented by Tim Burns, Commissioning Manager and Dr Richard Sandford-Hill, Chair, both of Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group. Carer Support Wiltshire’s service is jointly funded by Wiltshire Council and the NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group.

Three local NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups take steps to become one organisation

Three groups responsible for the planning, buying and monitoring of health services in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire could become one single organisation as soon as April 2020.

As one CCG, health leaders can reduce variation in care and standardise best practice so everyone can access high quality treatment and services, regardless of where they live. Working as one organisation will also help the CCG meet financial challenges by, for example, offering greater buying power, eliminating the duplication of administrative support functions and streamlining governance processes. The savings made can then be invested in frontline services or transformational projects.

The move is in line with similar mergers across the NHS and follows national guidance for health and care services to work more closely together and move towards becoming Integrated Care Systems to give everyone the best start in life, world-class care for major health problems and help to age well.

Dr Ian Orpen, Chair of the BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Board, said:
“CCGs up and down the country have either already merged or are beginning plans to merge to help better meet the needs of their local populations. We believe that now is the right time for our three CCGs to come together to form a leaner, more strategic, single organisation to serve local people.

“The three CCGs have a history of working together to deliver high quality care, and in the past year, we have increased our partnership working. For example, we have a single Chief Executive and executive management structure, which has led to more consistent leadership and a clearer direction to staff.

“I believe that as a single CCG, we will be in a stronger position to improve outcomes for patients, whilst still retaining our local voice.”

At their recent public meetings, the Governing Bodies of BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) approved plans to apply to NHS England to create one single organisation. Prior to submitting the application, the CCGs will engage with the public, staff, providers and other key stakeholders, and the GP membership of each CCG will then vote on a final decision to apply for a merger.

The three CCGs will then submit an application to NHS England and, if approved, the three groups will become a single CCG on 1 April 2020.

People living in Bath and North East Somerset (BaNES), Swindon and Wiltshire who want to share their views can do so by visiting:
www.bathandnortheastsomersetccg.nhs.uk
http://www.swindonccg.nhs.uk/
http://www.wiltshireccg.nhs.uk/

More pupils in the future across Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire will have access to specially trained mental health practitioners thanks to funding for a new programme.

Wiltshire Council, Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group and Bath and North East Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group successfully bid for funding to be part of NHS England’s Mental Health Support Team (MHST) Trailblazer programme.

The programme is already being implemented in Swindon and has been successfully rolled out in a number of other areas across the country. Now pupils across B&NES and Wiltshire will benefit from the second wave once the scheme starts in January 2020.

The scheme will see MHSTs working directly in selected schools and colleges across the region by providing on-site access to early mental health support.

The teams will provide early intervention for mild to moderate mental health issues, such as exam stress, low mood or friendship difficulties as well as providing support to staff. They will also act as a link with local specialist children and young people’s mental health services ensuring, if appropriate, that pupils can access more intensive support.

The funding for the scheme comes as recent public engagement driven by local health and care organisations has found that young people would prioritise better and faster access to mental health services.

One in nine young people aged 5 to 15 had a diagnosable mental health condition in 2017 and teenagers with a mental health disorder are more than twice as likely to have a mental disorder in adulthood. This package of measures is part of the Government’s plan to improve mental health support for children and young people, including identifying mental health issues before they become more acute.

Wiltshire Council Cabinet member for children, Pauline Church said:
“Now more than ever young people are under pressure, stress and social anxiety can cause real problems which affect their wellbeing and mental health”. “We know there is some excellent support out there already. This Trailblazer programme will build on that and provide even more support, earlier and where young people tell us that they want to receive it – in schools. The programme will help young people to improve their emotional health and wellbeing and get back on track.
Lucy Baker, Acting Commissioning Director for Maternity, Children and Mental Health at Wiltshire CCG said:
“It’s fantastic news that we’ve received funding for this important scheme. We know children, young people, their parents, supporters and carers want to be able to access mental health services quickly and easily and the Trailblazer scheme is a significant step forward in enabling that to happen.”
Dr David Soodeen, Clinical Director for the South West Mental Health Clinical Network, said:
“The process of growing up can lead to a number of issues which can impact upon the mental health of children and young people – exam stress, behavioural difficulties or friendship issues to name just a few. We believe that if intervention can take place early on, it may help stop worries becoming much bigger mental health issues. “By putting mental health support teams in to schools and colleges, the Trailblazer programme offers a really exciting opportunity to work differently with young people, supporting their mental health needs at an earlier stage and in a familiar setting. “Improving access to mental health support is a key theme of the NHS’ Long Term Plan and our congratulations go to everyone involved in securing this funding  – this will make a real difference to the local population and we look forward to working with both them, and colleagues in education, on delivering their plans.”

Wiltshire Council Press release: People asked to feedback on key health plan

Views are being sought on a strategy which sets out how people’s health and wellbeing will be supported in Wiltshire, giving them the best opportunities to thrive.

A consultation on the draft Wiltshire Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2019-2022 is underway and people have until 5 August to provide their feedback.

The strategy has been put together by Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board and their aim is to achieve the best outcomes for Wiltshire’s population through good quality housing, education, employment and safe communities.

The strategy is broken down into four main areas; prevention, tackling inequalities, localisation, and integration.

The role of Wiltshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board is to lead on work to improve the health and happiness of Wiltshire, specifically focusing on reducing health inequalities. It also considers the impact of health on the wider local authority and partnership agendas including housing, education, employment, crime, vulnerability and safeguarding.

Baroness Scott of Bybrook OBE, Leader of Wiltshire Council and co-chair of the Wiltshire Health and Wellbeing Board, said:
“This key document will underpin all our work to support health and social care in Wiltshire; which is of course relevant to so many people in the county.

“I welcome people to provide us with feedback to help inform our decision making so that the delivery of services in these areas are reflective of local needs. I appreciate everyone taking the time out to support us with this vital work.”

Dr Richard Sandford-Hill, Chair of Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group and co-chair of the Wiltshire Health and Wellbeing Board said:
“I’ve been a doctor in Wiltshire for 25 years and during that time I have seen the positive impact of effective medicine on life expectancy. However for us to live long, happy and healthy lives it relies on the combination of a healthy environment, supportive communities, housing, education and employment to have a positive impact and make the biggest difference.”

“It is therefore really important to us that we get this Health and Wellbeing strategy right for people and communities across Wiltshire. I encourage you to have your say and share your ideas with us.”

The consultation and associated strategy can be found at https://wiltshire.objective.co.uk/portal/public_health_and_public_protection/wiltshire_health_and_wellbeing_strategy_2019-2022_consultation

What would you change about local health and care services?

Younger people in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire are being given an opportunity to help shape how health and care services are provided in the future.

Over the next seven weeks, NHS and Local Authority organisations will invite all local residents to say what they need to live healthier and happier lives as part of a new campaign being launched today called Our Health Our Future.

Organisations involved are particularly keen to hear the often overlooked views of younger people who will be using services in the future.
Answers will be used by health and care providers as they work to publish a forward looking plan this autumn which will set out how everyone will be able to access the services and support they need. The new plan will outline a local response to priorities laid out in the NHS Long Term Plan which was published in January.

People will be able to share their views by filling in a simple survey online at www.ourhealthourfuture.org or by asking for a paper copy. They can also pass on their views at engagement events taking place across the local area over the next few weeks.

Tracey Cox, Chief Executive Officer for Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Groups said:
“Health and care organisations and local authorities are developing a bold plan for the next five years that will ensure our services provide support through every stage of people’s lives – so they start well, live well and age well.

In order to plan for the future, we need to know what matters, so we’re asking everyone to take a few minutes to fill in our survey and make sure their views are heard.

Our Health Our Future is about capturing everybody’s views, but we especially want to hear what younger people expect in the future from our services.

We also want local residents to make an effort to share their views with family and friends so, together, we can build healthier communities.”

Bath-based GP and board member of Bath and North East Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group, Dr Brynn Bird said:
“We know the way in which health and care is provided will change in the future, especially as our population ages and services come under greater pressure, and we’re developing a plan for how we will face these challenges.

“By filling in our survey, local people will be able to give us a good idea of the services and support they need to prevent ill health and stay fit.”

Alex Luke, Associate Director of Operations for BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire at Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership, said:
“We know that young people across our area are concerned about lots of issues including access to mental health services. We need to know what help and support people will need in the future and they can let us know what they think in the Our Health Our Future survey.”

The Our Health Our Future survey is open until the end of July and takes around 10 minutes to complete. It can be filled in online at www.ourhealthourfuture.org, by asking for a paper copy at local GP surgeries or by sharing your views at one of our engagement events taking place over the area over the coming weeks. Copies are also available by emailing bswccg.ourhealthourfuture@nhs.net or by calling 03333 219464. Survey answers are completely anonymous and will be treated confidentially.

Medvivo has again, been given the highest rating by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after it was first declared ‘outstanding’ in April 2017 for its GP Out of Hours service in Wiltshire.

Medvivo has been providing the Integrated Urgent Care service for Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire since May 2018. This brings together GP Out of Hours with NHS 111 and a new Clinical Assessment Service.  This second consecutive outstanding rating for an urgent care provider is unprecedented.

Following the CQC visit in January 2019, a full report based on the evidence gathered throughout the inspection has been published. Specific areas singled out include:

  • Clear vision and person-centred approach
  • Strong governance processes
  • Well-coordinated patient care
  • Best in class safeguarding
  • A “unique commitment” to public and patient engagement 
  • Rigorous monitoring of performance 
  • Exemplary use of data to support the whole health economy

Medvivo’s Managing Director, Liz Rugg, is immensely proud of the Medvivo team and comments: “This rating is recognition of the hard work and dedication demonstrated by our personnel in their provision of care services. To receive this rating twice, is a fantastic achievement, and testament to everyone’s commitment here to patient care.”

Chief Operating Officer, Michelle Reader adds: “The area we cover and the number of service users has increased massively since our last inspection. Everyone here should be congratulated for ensuring that we continue to deliver care of the highest quality. It also means that the residents of BaNES and Swindon can now enjoy outstanding urgent care, just as their neighbours in Wiltshire have done for a number of years”. 

The CQC Inspection Team comprised of a Lead Inspector, with a GP Specialist Adviser and two Inspection Managers.

In the report, Dr Rosie Benneyworth, Chief Inspector of Primary Medical Service and Integrated Care highlighted several areas of outstanding practice:

Working collaboratively with external stakeholders
“The provider worked collaboratively with external stakeholders on a range of initiatives to improve access to care and patient experience for those who were vulnerable, had a disability or were from a minority group. An example of this was the use of the Streetlink Homelessness App and delivering care for refugees being repatriated to the UK.”

Innovative approaches to providing integrated patient-centred care
“For example, the provider delivered an Urgent Care @Home service. The service ensured an integrated rapid health and social care response for service users in a health or social care crisis in their own home to avoid inappropriate admissions and expedite hospital discharges. This had not only improved patient outcomes but it has also supported the whole system in terms of increased capacity and financial savings.”

A strong emphasis on staff wellbeing
“The interventions initiated by the provider had led to a decrease in turnover of over 6% in the last 12 months. Examples of initiatives taken were a Health and Wellbeing Charter developed with staff, the introduction of Mental Health First Aiders, resilience workshops and self-awareness campaigns.”

The full report can be accessed at www.cqc.org.uk/location/1-347335038 or on the Medvivo website: www.medvivo.com/news/2019/outstanding-cqc-rating-retained