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Antibiotic Resistance

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Public Health England have launched a new national campaign, highlighting that taking antibiotics when you don’t need them puts you and your family at risk of more severe or longer illness. To help keep antibiotics working you are urged to always take your doctors or nurse’s advice on antibiotics.

It is estimated that 5,000 deaths are caused every year in England because antibiotics no longer work for some infections and this figure is set to rise with experts predicting that in just over 30 years antibiotic resistance will kill more people than cancer and diabetes combined.

Antibiotics help ward off infections during chemotherapy, caesarean sections and other surgery. They also treat serious bacterial infections such as pneumonia, meningitis and sepsis, but they are being used for everyday viral infections, such as colds or flu, where they are not effective.

Taking antibiotics encourages harmful bacteria that live inside you to become resistant. That means that antibiotics may not work when you really need them.

How to look after yourself and your family:

If you or a family member are feeling unwell, have a cold or flu and you haven't been prescribed antibiotics, here are some effective self care ways to help you feel better:

  • Ask your pharmacist to reccommend medicines to help with symptoms or pain
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Make sure you or your child drink enough to avoid feeling thirsty
  • Fever is a sign the body is fighting infection and usually gets better itself in most cases. You can use paracetamol if you or your child are uncomfortable as a result of a fever
  • Use a tissue for your nose and wash your hands frequently to avoid spreading your infection

Click here for further information on antibiotic use.

Antibiotic Guardian

Health professionals, patients, health leaders and those who work with, own or treat animals are being encouraged to visit the antibiotic guardian website and choose a pledge that they can fulfil and play their part in protecting some of our most precious medicines.

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Your NHS services over Easter weekend 2019

Your NHS services over Easter weekend 2019

If you need over the counter medicines, to fill a prescription or seek advice on mental or physical health conditions, there are a number of NHS services available to you over the Easter Holidays.

Pharmacists are trained healthcare professionals who can offer advice on a range of minor ailments and signpost you to the right care in the case of more serious health conditions. Community pharmacists are often open outside GP practice hours and a number in the area are open on Good Friday and Easter Monday.

If you are a parent and have a smartphone or tablet computer, you don’t even need to leave the house to get advice from healthcare professionals – the local NHS is offering a free childhood illness app for both Android and Apple devices that guides you through looking after many common ailments for children at home, with advice on what to do if there are signs of a more serious condition.

You can find more information about the app and downloads links at https://midessexccg.nhs.uk/livewell/startwell/childhood-illnesses. And adults can access similar advice through the NHS website at www.nhs.net.

These services include GP appointments every day of the holiday, including the bank holidays. This is part of the CCG’s Extended Access Scheme, which offers extra GP and nurse appointments 365 days a year.

You can find out more about the scheme by visiting bit.ly/ExtendedAccess. You can book Extended Access appointments in advance at one of four hubs in mid Essex through your own GP surgery or, when they are already closed, by calling 111. (Please note, there is no walk-in service at the hubs.)

There can be more than just physical health needs during Easter, though. The holidays are a stressful time for many people and our new online mental health service at midessexccg.nhs.uk/livewell/mentalhealth can give you a range of tools to help you cope. If you need immediate support away, you can also call the local mental health crisis line on 0330 726 0130 or the Samaritans, free, on 116 123.

And if you have a family member who is showing signs of dementia, you can get advice and support at any stage, before or after they have been diagnosed, by calling our Dementia Intensive Support Service (or DISS) on 01245 515 313.

Anyone, whether a member of the public, care home worker or healthcare professional, can call the number to access one-stop dementia services.

 

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Every year almost £2m worth of medicines go unused across mid Essex – help your NHS cut down on this waste

Every year almost £2m worth of medicines go unused across mid Essex – help your NHS cut down on this waste

carton figure through medicines in the bin

NHS Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is launching a far-reaching new campaign which aims to save vital funds for health services by clamping down on wasted medicines.

Called “Your Medicines, Your NHS”, the year-long campaign is designed to raise awareness of the estimated £2 million worth of medicines wasted in Braintree District, Chelmsford City and Maldon District each year.

That funding, if not spent on medication that goes to waste, could pay for:

  • 566 new hips; or
  • 139 more chemotherapy courses for breast cancer; or
  • 61 more community nurses.

The easiest way we can do this is to make sure we ‘Open the Bag’ when a pharmacist gives us our prescribed medicines. That allows us to hand back anything we don't need – and medicines that have not yet left a pharmacy can be reused.

We should also make sure we order only the medicines we will use, as anything we return to a pharmacy after taking it home must be destroyed – even un-opened packs.

Data shows that around half the medication returned to pharmacies has not been opened, which means patients are ordering it but don’t even start to use it.

When patients keep stocks of medicines at home, there is also a safety risk. The medicines may be taken by somebody else, or by the patient without realising they are out of date or been stopped by the doctor.

Paula Wilkinson, Chief Pharmacist for Mid Essex CCG, said: “We are encouraging everyone to reduce medicines wastage. Things can change between putting in your request for repeat medicines and when you collect them. So play your part – ‘Open the Bag’ and hand back any medicines that you don’t need.

“Get involved by making a pledge to support the campaign or joining the conversation on social media using the hashtags #OpenTheBag and #MedicinesWaste.”

To pledge your support for the campaign simply download a pledge and share across Facebook, Twitter and or Instagram tagging @MidEssexCCG and using the hashtags #OpenTheBag and #MedicinesWaste.

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Latest News

Your NHS services over Easter ...

If you need over the counter medicines, to fill a prescription or seek advice on mental or physical health conditions, there are a number of NHS services available to you over the Easter Holidays. Pharmacists are trained ...

Read more

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NHS Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is launching a far-reaching new campaign which aims to save vital funds for health services by clamping down on wasted medicines. Called “Your Medicines, ...

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