Monthly Archives: July 2015

Transforming urgent and emergency care in the North East

NHS England Chief Executive Simon Stevens and the NHS Five Year Forward View partners today (Friday) announced eight new vanguards that will launch the transformation of urgent and emergency care for more than nine million people.


This includes the North East Urgent Care Network, which will take the lead in improving urgent care for 2.71m people across the region.


This comes as NHS England also revealed the success of Regional Major Trauma Networks which, after they were set up just three years ago, have seen a remarkable 50 per cent increase in the odds of survival for trauma patients revealed in a new independent audit by the Trauma Audit and Research Network (TARN).


Building on the recent success in improving trauma survival rates, the urgent and emergency care vanguards are tasked with changing the way in which all organisations work together to provide care in a more joined up way for patients.


Urgent care will be delivered, not just in hospitals but also by GPs, pharmacists, community teams, ambulance services, NHS 111, social care and others, and through patients being given support and education to manage their own conditions. Another aim is to break down boundaries between physical and mental health to improve the quality of care and experience for all.


The eight new vanguards will spearhead this work and, like other vanguards, will benefit from a programme of support and investment from the £200m transformation fund.


Six vanguards will cover smaller local systems which may include hospitals and surrounding GP practices and social care, while two network vanguards will be working with much larger populations to integrate care on a greater scale.


Participation by the North East Urgent Care Network (NEUCN) in the Vanguard Programme will benefit 2.71 million across the North East region.


The NEUCN – which consists of all the key physical, mental health and care stakeholders and providers – already has a strong history of working collaboratively to deliver successful innovative projects to support the recommendations made in the Urgent and Emergency Care Review as well as, importantly, improving patient outcomes and experience.


This programme will enable the Network to transform the regional UEC system and its services to further improve consistency and clinical standards, reduce fragmentation and deliver high quality and responsive health and social care to patients.


It will also enable them to move at pace in terms of creating and implementing one urgent and emergency care model as well as giving strategic oversight to urgent and emergency care services across the regional footprint, providing consistent and seamless care, wherever patients present, whatever the day or hour with no difference in the clinical outcomes delivered.


NHS England’s Chief executive, Simon Stevens, said: “Starting today, the NHS will begin joining up the often confusing array of A&E, GP out of hours, minor injuries clinics, ambulance services and 111 so that patients know where they can get urgent help easily and effortlessly, 7 days a week. That’s why we’re backing what our frontline nurses, doctors and other staff, in partnership with local communities, to radically redesign our urgent and emergency services.”


Professor Chris Moran, NHS England’s National Clinical Director for Trauma Care, said: “It’s enormously rewarding for the NHS and the people it serves that in just three years we have seen a fifty per cent increase in the odds of survival with life-threatening injuries, that’s hundreds more patients saved since the networks started.”


Professor Keith Willett, NHS England’s Director of Acute Care, who is leading the Urgent and Emergency Care transformation, said: “This proves a modern NHS needs a very different approach and shows, we can transform patient care.


“These networks and new vanguards will support and improve all our local urgent and emergency care services, such as A&E departments, urgent care centres, GPs, NHS 111 and community, social care and ambulance services, so no one is working isolated from expert advice 24 hours a day.”


“All over the country there are pockets of best practice yielding enormous benefits; but to ensure our urgent care services are sustainable for the future every region must begin delivering faster, better and safer care. Now it is time for the new urgent and emergency care vanguards to design the best solutions locally.”


Today’s launch of the vanguards comes in the face of pressure on all NHS frontline emergency services, with increased A&E attendances and emergency admissions, and both ambulance and NHS 111 services facing rising demands.


Dr Stewart Findlay, Chair of the North East Urgent Care Network and Chief Clinical Officer of NHS Durham Dales, Easington and Sedgefield Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “This is great news for patients in the North East. There is a lot of innovative work underway to improve urgent care through better integration of services, and vanguard status will enable us to move further and faster in spreading this good practice across the region.


“Last winter was a time of immense pressure for urgent care services across the UK, and this is an important step towards tackling the problems we have faced through new ways of working.”


The North East initiative is supported by the region’s ten NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups and ten NHS Foundation Trusts, as well as a wide range of organisations including North East Ambulance Service, local authorities and the voluntary sector.


The Urgent and Emergency Care vanguards are a key element within the NHS Five Year Forward View which is a partnership between NHS England, the Care Quality Commission, Health Education England, Monitor, the Trust Development Authority, Public Health England and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and represent the next step in the transformation of Urgent and Emergency Care for the NHS announced by Sir Bruce Keogh, NHS England’s National Medical Director, in 2013.




Background Information:

The eight new urgent and emergency care vanguards are:

  • South Nottingham System Resilience Group
  • Cambridgeshire

Review of the Life Store service – have your say

NHS South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is made up of 46 GP practices working together to commission health services for local people across Middlesbrough and Redcar and Cleveland.

One of the services the CCG commissions is the Life Store, currently based within The Cleveland Shopping Centre, Middlesbrough. The service when first established was designed to offer health information and advice enabling local people to take steps to actively improve their health and lifestyle choices.

As part of the CCG’s vision to improve health together, the CCG is currently reviewing the service provided by the Life Store to determine how best it meets the health needs of local people. Importantly, we will be exploring, through engagement with the public, partners and stakeholders how the service can extend its reach into Redcar and Cleveland as well as Middlesbrough communities, and what service model may be required to achieve this.

We are holding two engagement events to discuss how we can help shape the model and how we can ensure the CCG are enabling local people to improve their health. The events will be ‘café style’, with small round table discussions. People can drop in at any time.

We would like to encourage people to come along to these events to share their thoughts:  Click here for more information.

Protecting your skin this summer

With the school summer holidays just beginning and the weather being as mixed as ever, it is easy to forget about staying safe in the sun when it does shine.  It is just as important to protect your skin from the sun on hot days at home as when you travel abroad in search of the sunshine. Here are a few pointers of how to keep safe in the heat, and to be honest most of it is common sense. Make sure you are drinking plenty to keep well hydrated, water is very good but try to avoid tea, coffee or alcohol.  Wear loose fitting clothes and a hat and try to keep out of the midday sun when outdoors and when indoors use the coolest room.


For July what I really wanted to tell you about was the next phase of the Be Clear on Cancer Campaign.  The Be Clear on Cancer Campaign aims to improve early diagnosis of cancer by raising awareness of symptoms and encouraging people to see their GP without delay.


Throughout July you may see information about breast cancer in women aged 70 or over. Breast cancer is the commonest cancer in the UK. The older you are, the more likely you are to get it – one in three women who get breast cancer are aged 70 and over.


If breast cancer is detected early, it is more treatable. Whatever our age, us ladies should be breast aware. It is important to get to know how your breasts look and feel normally, so that you’ll find it easier to spot something unusual.  A lump is not the only symptom of breast cancer – if you notice any unusual changes in your breast you should tell your doctor.

Over the last 20 years in practice I have had several ladies who have tried to keep their breast cancer a secret. They have told me about how frightened they were about seeing the doctor because they were worried about being diagnosed with cancer, not wanting to bother their family, anxious about undergoing treatment and thinking that nothing could be done at their age. The fact is though that these days if breast cancer is diagnosed in the earliest stages in women 70 years and over 93% of them will survive at least 5 years.

What you notice or find may prove to be nothing to worry about but give yourself the best chance and get it checked out.  If you did need further tests or treatment we have really good services locally with great support for you and your family.

So whilst you are trying to keep cool over the next few days in fewer clothes this could be a good time to become breast aware; it might just save your life someday.

For more information about being breast aware visit NHS Choices website , and watch out for the campaign leaflets.

Have your say on urgent health care services in Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland

Have you ever accessed health services at a local walk in centre, a minor injuries unit, the GP out of hours service, telephoned the NHS 111 service, or used A&E at James Cook University Hospital?

NHS South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is asking local people to tell them about their experiences of accessing these services, collectively known as urgent care services, to help influence their future plans through the development of an urgent care strategy.

The strategy will set out how services should be delivered in the future and is closely linked to the Government’s national review of emergency and urgent care services.

From this week, the CCG will be gathering the views of local people in a number of different ways, and is urging people to have their say.

Click here to find out more information and complete the online survey. Alternatively, you can attend a public meeting. Two events have been arranged in Middlesbrough, one in Redcar and another in Skelton. They will take place on:

  • Wednesday 22 July 2015, 4.30pm-6.30pm, Skelton Civic Hall, Coniston Road,TS12 2HP;
  • Friday 24 July 2015, 11am-2pm at Breckon Hill Community Centre, Breckon Hill Road, Middlesbrough, TS4 2DS;
  • Thursday 30 July 2015, 11am-3pm, in partnership with Redcar MIND on the 3rd floor of the Redcar Beacon on the seafront in Redcar;
  • Wednesday 5 August 2015, 1.30pm-3.30pm, Know Your Money – 73 Corporation Rd, Middlesbrough, TS1 1LY.

The CCG will also be capturing the views of existing voluntary and support groups across the South Tees area through a series of focus groups.

Dr Nigel Rowell, a local GP and member of the CCG governing body said: “Planning and buying high quality, accessible urgent care services on behalf of our local population is a high priority for the CCG.

“We know that demand for NHS services continues to increase and that patients seek greater assurance about their health care and more rapid response from services.

“Before the CCG develops a strategy for urgent care services, it is vitally important that we capture the views of people who currently access those services in the Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland areas. Those views will help enormously in identifying local demand, potential gaps in service and give us a clearer picture of the health care landscape in our area.

“I would urge everyone to complete our online survey and tell us what you think. Your participation is crucial to the future development of the local NHS.”

Mental health crisis service for young people

A crisis service designed to provide quick support, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to children and young people who are in a mental health or emotional crisis has been launched in Teesside.


The child, adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) crisis and liaison service has been commissioned by South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group following the success of a similar service in Durham and Darlington.


The nurse led service operated by staff from Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys (TEWV) NHS Foundation Trust is based at the Rosewood Centre at West Lane hospital in Middlesbrough and also works across several other sites including the area’s acute hospitals.


John Barnard, Tees CAMHS crisis and liaison project manager said “The aim of the service is to assess and treat children and young people with mental ill health or learning disability crisis at the earliest possible point to ensure they receive the care and support they need promptly.


“The Durham and Darlington project has proved very successful and has seen a reduction in CAMHS mental health assessment waiting times, as well as a reduction in overnight admissions and accident and emergency attendances. The Tees CAMHS crisis and liaison service will also bring many similar benefits and a much welcomed out of hours support to young people and their families in the Tees area.”


Dr Angel Carrasco, Mental Health Clinical Lead from NHS South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) said: “Improving mental health is one of our key strategic priorities.


“We know that in our area, children and young people face tough challenges that can harm their emotional wellbeing and contribute to mental ill health. This crisis and liaison service is an important step forward in improving mental health services in Teesside.”



In addition to providing the 24 hour assessment service The CAMHS crisis and liaison team will also work closely with partner agencies and families and carers to promote positive mental health in children and young people and offer advice and support.

Asking your views on urgent care services

As I mentioned in last week’s blog,  the CCG are looking at urgent care services throughout the Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland areas.

We know that it is important to talk to local people and involve them in its work to make sure that the health services it develops and buys really do meet the needs of the people that will use them.

The CCG would like to ask your views on the management of urgent minor injuries and urgent illnesses in the local area, including:

  • Self-care
  • NHS 111
  • GP Practice
  • Pharmacy
  • Walk in centre
  • GP Out of hours
  • Accident & Emergency

Your views will help the CCG produce a strategy for urgent care developed in partnership with the public and key strategic partners.

The CCG aims to ensure all stakeholders are effectively engaged in the development of this strategy and a link to the  questionnaire will be available via the website shortly  for you to contribute and have your say. We are trying to ask the questions far and wide so you can also participate  in one of the many group conversations happening in community groups across the area. You can attend one of our open meetings or join in our on street surveys. Members of MY NHS will receive notification directly.

We look forward to receiving your feedback.  Further information will be available on our website soon.