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Truro's minor injury unit relocates as part of Covid-19 planning

Camborne Redruth

Patients coming to the Royal Cornwall Hospital’s Urgent Treatment Centre/Emergency Department in Truro with less serious illness and injury are now being redirected to Camborne-Redruth Community Hospital Minor Injury Unit for assessment and treatment.

This will allow staff at the Royal Cornwall Hospital to focus on critically unwell or injured patients at the Emergency Department, as part of our Covid19 emergency planning.

Patients with minor illness should continue to use local pharmacies, their own GP, NHS 111 and, if needed, Out of Hours GP services.

The Camborne-Redruth Community Hospital Minor Injury Unit is open 7 days a week from 8.00 am until 10.00 pm.  The postcode for satnav directions is: TR15 3ER. To access the minor injury unit, please use the outpatient department entrance, which is clearly signposted on site. 

Patients with significant limb injuries which cannot wait until the following morning can be seen overnight at the Limb Trauma Unit now open at St Michael’s Hospital in Hayle.

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Over 400,000 People Join NHS Army of Volunteers in One Day

NHS Lozenge

Over 400,000 people have already signed up to volunteer for the NHS to help in its fight against coronavirus.

In just one day, the call to arms has seen a staggering 405,724 people sign up to help vulnerable people to stay safe and at home, exceeding the original target by over 100,000 people.

NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens praised the “overwhelming response” and thanked those who will devote their time to the health service.

Sir Simon Stevens said: “Times like this show just how generous the British people are and how much they value our health service - we are blown away by this response and the kindness of our country.

“I can’t thank those enough who have pledged to devote their time to helping others at what is a challenging and uncertain time for you and your families. The NHS is always there for you – now is your time to be there for us too.”

The volunteers will start roles from next week and help the 1.5 million who have been asked to shield themselves from coronavirus because of underlying health conditions.

Thanks to the surge of help, the NHS is now extending its target to recruit 750,000 people to its army of volunteers. People can still join the trusted list of volunteers by visiting goodsamapp.org/NHS and adding their details to the NHS section. 

Professor Stephen Powis, NHS national medical director, said: “We are truly amazed by the number of people who want to come and help us in the war against coronavirus. I would like to thank every last one of you who are offering your time – you will without a doubt help us to save lives.

“Our NHS needs you – whether it’s by volunteering or simply staying at home – you are helping your families, communities and protecting our NHS.”

Members of the public can sign up as NHS Volunteer Responders and opt to do a number of roles, including:

  • delivering medicines from pharmacies;
  • driving patients to appointments;
  • bringing them home from hospital;
  • or making regular phone calls to check on people isolating at home.

The health service has joined up with the RVS and the GoodSAM app – a digital tool to help people offer their services.

Chief Executive of Royal Voluntary Service, Catherine Johnstone CBE said:

“In times like this you can really see the best in humanity – small gestures of compassion and connection that allow us to show who we are and what matters to us. Coronavirus has created an emergency that requires us to act, and act selflessly in order to protect the most vulnerable in our communities – no matter what our social status or who we vote for.

“We’ve been overwhelmed with the number of people who have stepped forward and volunteered to be part of the NHS Volunteer Responders but we are also not surprised – Royal Voluntary Service witnessed a similar response during the outbreak of WW2 when a million women came forward to help those most in need.

“Over the past 80 years Royal Voluntary Service has been aiding the health service by mobilising volunteers to support those in need in communities and hospitals. Today we face an even greater task – and we are proud to support the NHS at this important time to protect those most vulnerable. Together we can look out for each other and in doing so support the NHS at this vital time.”  

Dr Mark Wilson, GoodSAM co-founder said: “It's fantastic to be helping the wonderful volunteer community come together to support the NHS and society in this time of need.”

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Your NHS needs YOU - Join the NHS Volunteer Responders

Your NHS needs YOU - Join the NHS Volunteer Responders

NHS Volunteer Responders is a new group that will carry out simple, non-medical tasks to support people in England who have been asked to shield themselves from coronavirus because of underlying health conditions. They will be used by healthcare professionals to make sure people who are highly vulnerable to coronavirus (COVID-19) are able to stay safe and well at home.

Who can join and what are the tasks?

The NHS and social care urgently need people to join the NHS Volunteer Responders to do simple but vital tasks including driving people to and from hospital, and delivering food and medication. Volunteers will also support the NHS to transport equipment and supplies, and make regular phone calls to check on people isolating at home.

Please note, to comply with the UK’s current ‘Stay at Home’ rules you can only volunteer to carry out those tasks which involve leaving your home if you fulfil ALL of the conditions below:

  • You are well and have no symptoms like a cough or high temperature and neither does anybody in your household
  • You are under 70
  • You are not pregnant
  • You do not have any long-term health conditions that make you vulnerable to coronavirus

Guidance for those at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus can be found here [hyperlink: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults]

I need to stay at home – can I still help?

You can sign up as a telephone ‘check in and chat’ volunteer even if you are staying at home and you are in one of the groups listed above.

How do I join?

Just register here [hyperlink: goodsamapp.org/nhs] you will then be asked to select from a list of tasks. Once your registration and checks are complete you can download the GoodSAM Responders app. Local volunteer tasks will be pushed to your phone with an alert when you switch the app to ‘on duty’. 

Why has NHS Volunteer Responders been set up?

It is vital that health and social care teams can easily match people who need help to self-isolate with ID-checked volunteers in a managed, England-wide system. This service aims to support people who have specific health conditions which put them at high risk from coronavirus. It will be used by doctors, nurses and others where there is no alternative local support for their patients, and will help to keep hospital beds available to those who need them most.

 

Is this different from helping out my neighbours and local charities?

NHS Volunteer Responders is not intended to replace any local provision. It will provide a service where informal support is not available or where health and social care professionals do not have a way to refer people into those systems. It is being delivered by Royal Voluntary Service one of the country’s largest and long-standing volunteering charities.

I am clinically trained – how can I volunteer to help the NHS?

The NHS Volunteer Responders will not undertake clinical tasks. If you are clinically trained please visit: https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/returning-clinicians/

Alternatively contact your local hospital trust.

 

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Stratton Community Treatment Centre to re-open

Stratton MIU

A promise to bring back a pioneering overnight service at Stratton’s Community Treatment Centre will be fulfilled, thanks to the efforts of dedicated health workers and support from the community.

Back in January 2020 it was announced that the treatment centre would be moved out of Stratton until the end of February to meet the unprecedented demand in health and care services across Cornwall.

The pilot service, which was developed in partnership with the nearby community, launched last August as an innovative solution to bring back overnight services to the hospital as a result of being unable to recruit nurses back in 2017.

The overnight service will resume on Sunday 1 March and will run until 22 August 2020.

The treatment centre will continue to be staffed, as it has been since the launch of the trial, by Kernow Health CIC, which provides the urgent care service NHS 111 to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in partnership with Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

John Govett, independent chair of the Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Health and Care Partnership, said: “It was necessary to temporarily close the Stratton Community Treatment Centre during the very busy winter period to ensure that the needs of the whole county were met and services were available where there was the greatest demand.

“Behind the scenes everyone across health and care has been working not only to provide the highest and safest of services to people who need treatment but also to make sure we can get back to business as usual as quickly as possible. I’m delighted that we are able to fulfil the promise we made to re-open Stratton’s overnight service.

“I would like to thank everyone across the health and care partnership for their commitment dealing with the recent unprecedented demand and also the people of Stratton for their understanding and patience during this time.”

Julie Dawson, managing director of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We have always remained committed to making sure the overnight service returned to Stratton and thanks to the combined efforts of everyone we are pleased to say that the service will return on 1 March for residents living in Stratton and the north of the county as well as our neighbours over the border in Devon until the 22 August.”

The trial service offers:

  • Expert senior clinician whose skills extend beyond a traditional minor injury practitioner
  • Appointments for people from Stratton, Bude and the surrounding area who have an appointment to be seen by an out of hours service after contacting NHS 111.
  • Treat patients who need to attend the centre with a minor injury out of hours.

The Stratton Minor Injury Unit has been open as usual throughout from 8am to 10pm every day and X-ray from 9am to 5pm on Monday to Friday. In addition support remains available from NHS 111 and in emergencies or life threatening situations 999.

The community treatment centre service will be evaluated and if successful plans for a permanent service at Stratton will be explored.

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Official opening of Falmouth Community Hospital’s day unit after refurbishment

Falmouth hospital day unit opening

Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CFT) and The League of Friends of the Falmouth Hospital  celebrated the opening of the newly refurbished day unit on Wednesday 19 February 2020, which was officially opened by Barbara Vann, Trust Chair.

£12,000 was raised by the League of Friends to modernise the existing space and meet the growing demand for the services offered at the unit.

 

Falmouth Open Day Barbara, Dot and Sarah

The day unit is a purpose built facility designed to look after 4 patients at any one time without requiring an overnight stay.

It offers services such as blood transfusions, various infusions, Central Venous Catheter (CVC) line care (PICC lines, Hickman lines), catheter care and dressings.

The majority of patients who will benefit from the unit live in and around Falmouth; however, patients from other parts of Cornwall are also welcome to use the services when unable to access services closer to their homes.

Sarah Raymont, Falmouth Community Hospital team lead for the day unit, said: ”Patients have already commented on how lovely and friendly the unit is and how grateful they are to have such a valuable facility on their doorstep.

“Recently, one patient likened the unit and its staff to a ‘calm oasis in an otherwise huge ocean of treatment’.

“We may only be a small part of their overall journey but for us seeing patients happy and relaxed especially when some have been through so much is our ultimate goal.”

Patients are referred via the Royal Cornwall Hospital or their GP. There is flexibility to allow patients to drop in if required, for example, for blood tests, issues with dressings and catheters. The unit is open from Monday to Friday from 8am to 4.30pm.

 

Falmouth Open Day group

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X-ray department at St Austell MIU helps reduce numbers at Truro's emergency department

The extended opening hours of an X-ray department in a minor injuries unit is helping to reduce the numbers of people going to Treliske emergency department.

St Austell MIU

Nearly 350 people have used the X-ray department in the minor injuries unit (MIU) at St Austell Community Hospital since launching the additional opening hours from 9am until 8pm every day, including weekends and bank holidays, back in January.

Ahead of the half-term (Monday 17 February – Friday 21 February) holiday people are reminded that the X-ray department will continue to open additional hours until the end of March 2020.

Emma Spouse, diagnostic imaging lead at Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “Since the additional service launched 349 patients have been X-rayed at the St Austell MIU, which is between 12 and 13 people a day.”

Figures also showed that from that number on average between two and three people or 75 patients across 28 evenings had attended the X-ray department at St Austell’s MIU in January.

She added “We opened the X-ray department at St Austell for longer to take some of the pressure away from the Royal Cornwall hospital, Treliske emergency department at its busiest time of day, which is usually early evening.

“We’re delighted with the way in which people have used the service and we hope that they will continue to use the MIU at St Austell Hospital until 8pm, seven days a week until the end of March.”

New X-ray equipment was installed in St Austell X-ray department in 2019 and provides the latest, rapid digital imaging technology.

For the latest emergency department and minor injury unit waiting times visit www.kernowccg.nhs.uk/choosewell

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Help us to help you

NotSureWhatToDo

Pharmacists can help treat coughs, colds, sore throats, earache, nappy rash, cystitis (bladder infection), impetigo (skin condition) and emergency contraception. You can also get advice on prescription medicines. Some pharmacies are also open in the evening and at the weekend – visit www.nhs.uk – to find your nearest pharmacy.

Pharmacists can arrange an emergency supply of medicines if you forget to renew your prescription, even if you don’t live in Cornwall and lastly remember to stock up your medicine cabinet with paracetamol, antiseptic etc if you have a condition that can be treated at home.

And remember minor injury units -11 across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly - can treat a range of conditions which have occurred during the previous 14 days. These include sprains and strains; broken bones; minor burns and scalds; head injuries (but not if someone is unconscious); insect and animal bites and stings; minor eye injuries, cuts, bruising and grazes. You will be seen by an experienced nurse, without an appointment.

The X-ray department supporting the minor injury unit at St Austell Community Hospital in now open is  now open longer – 9am until 8pm every day, including weekends and bank holiday until the end of March 2020, as part of measures to keep the Truro emergency department free for those most in need.

If you are unsure if your minor injury can be treated at one of the 11 units, telephone the local unit before travelling (and also confirm the availability of x-ray facilities, if thought to be needed), or call NHS 111. The links below provide opening times, directions and contact details.

Up to the minute waiting times for all minor injury units and the urgent treatment centre at Penzance – which is open 24 hours a day – can be found here

If you do have a loved one or friend who is ready to leave an acute or community hospital you can help us help them by collecting them as early in the day as possible because all of our hospitals are very busy right now.

For more information go to kernowccg.nhs.uk/get-info/choose-well/

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Read the latest on the Wuhan novel coronavirus

Updated 11 February 2020

The NHS in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and Public Health England (PHE) are extremely well prepared for outbreaks of new infectious diseases. The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal.

The risk to the general public is moderate. If you have arrived back to the UK from mainland China, Thailand, Japan, Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia or Macau within 14 days, follow the specific advice for returning travellers.

Anyone who has travelled to China or places listed above in the last 14 days and develops symptoms of cough or fever or shortness of breath, should immediately:

  • Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu
  • Call NHS 111 to inform them of your recent travel to the country

Information for the public is available at gov.uk/coronavirus

Like the common cold, coronavirus infection usually occurs through close contact with a person with novel coronavirus via cough and sneezes or hand contact. A person can also be infected by touching contaminated surfaces if they do not wash their hands.

The risk of being in close contact with a person with coronavirus or contaminated surfaces is very low at the current time, as members of the public who have visited Wuhan, Hubei province, China are currently in isolation.

Testing of suspected coronavirus cases is carried out in line with strict regulations. This means that suspected cases are kept in isolation, away from public areas of the hospital and returned home also in isolation. Any equipment that come into contact with suspected cases are thoroughly cleaned as appropriate. Specific guidance has also been shared with NHS staff to help safeguard them and others.  Patients can be reassured that their safety is a top priority, and are encouraged to attend all appointments as usual.

Everyone is being reminded to follow Public Health England advice to:

  • Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.

You can find the latest information and advice from Public Health England at www.gov.uk/coronavirus

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Cornwall and Isles of Scilly to fast track plans to help older people stay well and avoid hospital admissions

Ageing well

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have today, 23 January 2020 been announced as one of seven areas across the country to accelerate improvements to help mainly older people stay well at home and avoid long stays in hospital.

Today’s announcement takes forward plans set out in the NHS Long Term Plan to enable community teams to respond quickly to peoples’ needs and prevent unnecessary hospital admissions.

The additional investment will see urgent requests responded to within two hours. In addition, support to help people regain their ability to perform their usual activities like cooking meals, washing and getting about will be provided within two days. The quicker response times will help people to remain well, in their own homes and independent 365 days a year.

Helen Childs, chief operating officer at NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group the lead for Embrace (Ageing Well) said, ‘We are delighted to be announced as one of seven sites nationally to lead the introduction of standardised response times and improved outcomes for people.

“Locally, one in four people are over the age of 65; and we know that historically we haven’t always provided them with the best outcome because we weren’t able to provide rapid, timely access to short term community services. Today’s announcement will allow us to accelerate our plans, as part of the Embrace Care programme, to support mainly older people at home.

“This will be better for people, their families and also means that hospital beds are available for the people who need these very specialist services and expertise.”

In future, people like 84 year old Irene who has two long-term conditions and requires a hospital admission to treat a life threatening medical emergency, will very quickly be referred to the community team. As Irene usually lives independently at home with limited support from her daughter, the community team will talk to her about her discharge and what support she will need to safely return home. Within a week, Irene will be discharged from hospital and into the care of her community team.

Phil Confue, chief executive of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, added, “This investment will significantly boost our plans to transform how we respond to the needs of older people. GPs, ambulance colleagues and partners from across health and care will have a real alternative to seeking a hospital admission – knowing they can request and receive a response within two hours or days based on what people need.

“For example, in the case of Bill, 78 who has an infection which needs to be treated with IV antibiotics; instead of admitting him to hospital, his GP will refer him to his community team who will help him recover at home. The community team will visit Bill to administer his antibiotics and monitor his recovery, calling on other services to support him as required.”

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly will begin to develop its urgent community response services with the design of the new service model ready for April this year. We anticipate full county roll out by April 2021.

The findings from Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly’s scheme will be shared across the South West so similar schemes will be made available to everyone.

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CFT will support mild to moderate anxiety and depression from April

Support services for people with mild to moderate anxiety and depression, including talking therapies, will transfer to Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust from 1 April 2020.

Two People Talking

It comes following a request from Outlook South West (OSW) that the existing mental health contract, which it has provided since April 2017, was taken on by CFT which will run until the 31 March 2022.

This request was accepted by NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group.

People will see no change in the way that they receive their treatment and all staff currently working for Outlook South West will transfer to CFT, if they wish.

Dr Adrian Flynn, CFT interim medical director, said: “Outlook South West has always been recognised as a valued and highly successful provider of mental health services in Cornwall.  We are delighted to take on this service and retain the expertise and dedication of OSW by offering them all the opportunity to transfer to CFT.

“The benefits of this decision include a seamless pathway between primary and secondary care for the benefit of people in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and reducing gaps between services.”

Outlook South West has delivered the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service in Cornwall since 2008 and through its existing contract with the NHS since 2017. Through the IAPT service, the organisation currently receives just over 16,000 referrals a year from adults across the county. Outlook South West will also transfer its smaller NHS contracts, which include The Suicide Liaison Service, the adult Asperger’s Assessment Service, and a contract to provide specific wellbeing groups for mums suffering from postnatal depression.

Kevin Simpson, Outlook South West director, said: “We are very proud of our achievements as a service. It has grown significantly over the past decade and we’ve been able to help many thousands of people into recovery using evidenced-based treatments, such as CBT. We felt as directors, that in the longer run, the service would be better off being embedded within an NHS organisation. The NHS’ Long Term Plan to further integrate mental and physical health services is one such aspect that will be more seamlessly delivered by an organisation such as CFT. It also means that for local people there will be a closer integration between primary and secondary care services. If that helps to close any gaps between them, then it can only be seen as a positive move for the people of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.”

Jackie Pendleton, NHS Kernow chief officer, said: “We would like to thank Outlook South West, who has provided NHS access to the talking therapies service and other mental health support through its existing contract since 2017, for its work and the positive impact it has made to the lives of people in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and its professional and dedicated approach.”

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