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We are responsible for commissioning (planning and buying) healthcare for approximately 740,000 people
across Lincolnshire."


Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS) will be supporting this year's Equality, Diversity and Human Rights Week.

The week, organised by NHS Employers, shines a light on the ongoing work across the NHS to ensure it continues to meet the diverse needs of local populations and is a place where staff from all backgrounds will want to work.

From Monday, May 11, to Friday, May 15, NHS organisations across the country will be promoting their achievements in this area, showing how they make equality part of everything they do, improving the quality of services for patients and the working lives of staff.

Rachel Higgins, Equality and Diversity Manager at LCHS, said: "Equality is the golden thread that runs through all that we do at LCHS and the opportunity to promote equality through the week with NHS Employers is definitely 'linking our thinking'."

LCHS will be promoting equality areas throughout the week by:

signing up to the British Deaf Associations' Charter for British Sign Language;
delivering Dementia Awareness sessions and signing up more Dementia Friends through the Equality Lead of teams across LCHS;
launching a Diversity Events Calendar and Age in the NHS;
discussing the launch of a Straight Allies Programme with the Lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) staff network.

Danny Mortimer, Chief Executive of the NHS Employers, said: "This year's theme is Linking Our Thinking and, in this spirit, we are trying to cover as many aspects of diversity during the week as we can.

"In the same vein, we are also encouraging as many organisations across the health and social care sector as possible to get involved."


Health leaders support world asthma day

Health leaders at South Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will be supporting World Asthma Day on Tuesday 5 May and the aim of the day which is to improve asthma awareness and care around the world.

World Asthma Day is an annual event organised by the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA). "You Can Control Your Asthma” is the theme of this year’s World Asthma Day in support of the notion that anyone with asthma should be able to lead a full and unrestricted life if they follow an action plan and receive the right treatments. 

Asthma is a common long-term condition that can cause coughing, wheezing, chest tightness and breathlessness. The severity of these symptoms varies from person to person. Asthma can be controlled well in most people most of the time, although some people may have more persistent problems.

The reason why some people develop asthma is not fully understood, although it is known that those with a family history of the condition are more likely to develop it. Asthma can develop at any age, including in young children and elderly people.

Dr Kevin Hill, Chair of NHS South Lincolnshire CCG, said:

“It is estimated that around 5.4 million people are currently receiving treatment for asthma in the UK and most should be able to lead a full and active life if their condition is well managed. The key to managing asthma well is being on the right treatment. To help with this those with asthma should monitor their condition, understand their triggers and attend their asthma clinic regularly.

“There is lots of advice available on living with asthma. Two good resources for those with asthma are NHS Choices and Asthma UK. If you have recently been diagnosed with asthma and are finding it difficult to control your symptoms, don’t suffer in silence, contact your asthma nurse or doctor and they will advise you on ways to improve your condition”.

For more information about asthma see NHS Choices and the Asthma UK website.


Save lives: clean your hands

As milder weather arrives and bugs and germs start to thrive, NHS staff are encouraging people to wash their hands the way the best professionals do.
South Lincolnshire CCG is encouraging everyone to ensure they keep their hands clean ahead of the World Health Organisation’s annual campaign ‘Save Lives: clean your hands’.
This year’s campaign day falls on Tuesday 5 May.
Hands are still one of the biggest spreaders of germs in the UK. Hand washing with warm water and soap is the most effective and inexpensive way to prevent the spread of germs and infections. Studies show it lowers the transmission of diarrhoea and colds both at work and home as well as in NHS facilities.
The NHS is asking everyone to wash their hands regularly during the day, using warm water and soap, to prevent spreading germs. Hands should be washed after every trip to the toilet and before and after preparing food.
The NHS professional handwash way involves 10 tips:
Wet hands
Apply enough handwash to cover all hand surfaces
Rub hands palm to palm
Right palm over the other hand with interlaced fingers and vice versa
Palm to palm with fingers interlaced
Backs of fingers to opposing palms with fingers interlocked
Left thumb clasped in right palm and vice versa
Rub clasped fingers of right hand in left palm and vice versa
Rinse hands thoroughly
Dry thoroughly. In addition those that are visiting NHS hospitals, clinics and surgeries should follow instructions on hand hygiene by either using soap and water or hand gels provided. This is to help reduce infections like MRSA and Clostridium difficile in hospitals, and it can reduce the risk but not prevent the spread of norovirus. Anyone visiting patients should always ensure their hands are cleaned before entering or leaving a ward or clinical area.
Dr Kevin Hill, Chair of NHS South Lincolnshire CCG said:
  “The NHS wants everyone to stay fit and healthy. By preventing germs from circulating we can all play our part in helping to reduce the spread of flu, stomach bugs and other illnesses as well as healthcare associated infections such as MRSA and Clostridium difficile.
“By washing your hands with soap and water and making sure they’re dried properly you can significantly reduce the number of germs circulating and reduce your chances of getting ill.”
The NHS has produced a simple video showing the best way to wash your hands in the way that professionals are taught. See http://www.wash-hands.com
The World Health Organisation’s (WHO) campaign: This year is 10 years since the launch of the WHO Clean Care is Safer Care programme -
- and the seventh year of SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands campaign.

As part of a major global effort to improve hand hygiene in health care, led by WHO to support health-care workers, the SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands annual global campaign was launched in 2009 and is a natural extension of the WHO First Global Patient Safety Challenge: Clean Care is Safer Care work.

The campaign aims to galvanise action at the point of care to demonstrate that hand hygiene is the entrance door for reducing health care-associated infection and patient safety. It also aims to demonstrate the world's commitment to this priority area of health care.

Norovirus: Regular handwashing throughout the day can reduce the risk of your picking up norovirus, but is not a complete preventative. If you have norovirus, avoid direct contact with other people and preparing food for others until at least 48 hours after your symptoms have disappeared. You may still be contagious, even though you no longer have sickness or diarrhoea.

Avoid visiting hospitals if you have had the typical symptoms of norovirus in the past 48 hours. Some hospitals may request you avoid visiting if you've had symptoms within the past 72 hours. Norovirus is more serious and even more easily spread among people who are already ill.

You may be asked to rearrange a medical appointment if you have had norovirus symptoms recently. 



A case manager is the latest to be honoured in Lincolnshire with a Queen's Nurse title.

Claire Walpole a case manager based at the Long Sutton Medical Centre has been awarded the prestigious title of Queen's Nurse, by community nursing charity The Queen's Nursing Institute (QNI).

The title is not an award for past service, but indicates a commitment to high standards of learning, leadership and patient care.

"I was nominated by a patient for the title because she was really pleased with the care that I give. I was really overwhelmed," said Claire.

She added: "My hope through the title is to continue to develop the profile of my fantastic team who work incredibly hard. The Queen's Nurse title is very much about improving standards of care and leadership which is what I intend to do."

Clarie's NHS career began 18 years ago when she completed her nurse training at Peterborough Hospital in 1997.

She left the hospital for community nursing in 2005 and became a case manager in 2009.

Her current position sees her leading nine members of staff, palliative care and dealing with complex visits.

Claire said: "I really do love my job it's so rewarding and to receive this recognition for simply doing my job makes me feel quite overwhelmed. My children told me how proud of me they are, which means so much to me when they see me working so hard."

There are now 16 Queen's Nurses within Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust.

Sue Cousland, Chief Nurse and Director of Operations at Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust, said: "We are very proud of the growing team of Queen's Nurses at Lincolnshire Community Health Services, who are being rightly recognised for the positive contributions they continue to make, to ensure patients receive the best care possible. As an organisation, we feel privileged to be closely involved with the Queen's Nursing Institute Network and fully support the future development of our nurses and leaders. I would like to offer our very best wishes and congratulations to Claire for her achievements."

Claire will attend an official ceremony in London on Monday, May 11.

Crystal Oldman, Chief Executive of the QNI said: "Congratulations are due to Claire for her success. Community nurses operate in an ever more challenging world and our role is to support them as effectively as we can. The Queen's Nurse title is a key part of this and we would encourage other community nurses to apply."


More than 100 Dementia Friends have been signed up through a Lincolnshire hospital and one member of staff is hoping to sign up another 100.

Donna Phillips, Clinical Nurse Educator at Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust, is based at John Coupland Hospital and has been running sessions to help make people think about what it's like to live with dementia.

Dementia Friends training is just one of many ways staff at the trust are supporting patients and their families living with dementia.

Trust staff have also attended the Best Practice in Dementia Care Course accredited by The Sterling University. This six month self-study course also involves face to face sessions led by a facilitator every two weeks.

Currently 12 staff from the Scotter Ward at John Coupland Hospital have successfully completed the course with hopes of more joining them.

"After attending Dementia Champion training in February last year I went on to become a Dementia Champion myself. I have been delivering sessions for the last 11 months," said Donna.

"These sessions are for everyone really from students to volunteers, domestics, porters, managers, doctors and nurses. It's all about helping staff to understand what small things they can do in whatever job role they have."

The one hour sessions are designed to make people think about the small ways to help a person who has dementia, even something as minor as making a cup of tea to crossing the road safely.

Alzheimer's Society reached its one million Dementia Friends target in February 2015 and is now aiming to create a further 3 million by 2020, to help make England more dementia friendly and improve the lives of the 720,000 people currently living with the condition.

Research by Alzheimer's Society shows that 850,000 people in the UK have a form of dementia, 62 per cent of those have Alzheimer's disease. In less than ten years a million people will be living with dementia which will soar to 2 million people by 2051.

Donna said: "We are looking after more and more patients with dementia as a secondary condition which is why I've raised my target from 100 Dementia friends to 200. Our aim is to improve the care of our patients. I am so proud of the Combined Outpatient and Surgical Team which has a 100 per cent of the department as Dementia Friends.

She added: "Through this training staff now have more awareness and are looking behind the issue and the problem."

To help with this staff at the Scotter Ward at John Coupland Hospital, Gainsborough are working with an All About Me booklet which is filled in by family members with the patient's likes and dislikes and information about their family and life which helps staff to get to know the patient.

"We are implementing these small changes such as the All About Me booklets and the Butterfly Scheme which is where we pop a butterfly symbol on notes and charts so all staff are aware that this patient either has dementia or cognitive memory problems," she added.

Rebecca Hill, Dementia Friends regional Support Officer at Alzheimer's Society said: "Dementia Friends is the perfect opportunity to be able to invite everyone up and down the country to improve their knowledge. Dementia Friends isn't about creating experts, it's about helping people understand a little bit more about what it's like to live with the condition and then turn that understanding into action - anyone of any age can be a Dementia Friend."


Not sure if it's an emergency? Call 111

With winter upon us and seasonal illnesses like flu and tummy bugs are circulating, pressure on the NHS increases. Help is at hand for people to understand the importance of accessing the right services first time.

If you’re generally fit and healthy, you may be unsure what to do or where to go with unexpected or urgent healthcare needs. In most instances people don’t need A&E or 999, and accessing more suitable healthcare could result in being seen quicker.

You should call NHS 111 if:

            •           you need medical help fast, but it is not a 999 emergency;
            •           you think you need to go to A&E or another NHS urgent care service;
            •           you don’t know who to call for medical help or you don’t have a GP to call; or
            •           you require health information or reassurance about what to do next.

For less urgent health needs you should still contact your GP or local pharmacist in the usual way.

NHS111 makes it easy for you to access healthcare advice when you need medical help fast, but it’s not a life-threatening situation.

Dr Kevin Hill, Chair of NHS South Lincolnshire CCG, said: 

“NHS111 is a free number, which is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  The highly trained call handlers can provide health advice, put you in touch with the right service, arrange to have you seen by a doctor or call you an ambulance.  The service is manned by trained call handlers with nurses on site to offer support if needed. Callers’ symptoms are assessed and they are given the healthcare advice they need or are directed immediately to the right service, first time.”

Those with internet access can also visit: http://www.nhs.uk/111