Latest News from Compass Counselling’s Tea & Empathy

Tea & Empathy  is a small community cafe, which has been opened by Compass to provide somewhere in the Bootle for people to be able to “drop in” for light refreshments at a modest cost and to chat, to relax, and to have some friendly company.




Click here to view the latest newsletter from Compass Counselling’s Tea & Empathy

Tea & Empathy is on the high street At Knowsley Road, Bootle post code L20 4NR,. The  47 47A 48 and 54 buses stop with a few hundred yards.



Alzheimer’s Society’s Fix Dementia Care campaign

Alzheimer’s Society has recently launched the #FixDementiaCare campaign. please see below for details of the campaign.

The statistics

There are over 700,000 people with dementia in England, with this figure expected to increase to around 850,000 by 2021.

In a 2015 poll of over 570 carers, families and friends of people with dementia:

  • Only 2% said that in their experience all hospital staff understood the specific needs of people with dementia
  • 57% per cent said they felt the person they care for was not treated with understanding and dignity in hospital
  • 90% per cent said they felt the person with dementia became more confused while in hospital
  • 92% per cent thought hospital environments were frightening for the person with dementia.
hospital staff
  • Only 69% of hospital trusts are properly screening patients over 75 for dementia on admission, despite being offered financial incentives to do so.

Inconsistent hospital recording of the numbers of people with dementia who have fallen means this data was only available for a quarter of hospitals, but even in this small sample 6,834 falls were reported last year. In these hospitals an average of 28.3% of people aged over 65 who had a fall were people with dementia, but these numbers were as high as 52.2% to 70.6% in the three worst performing hospitals.

Length of stay

On average, people with dementia spend nearly four times as long in hospital following a fall and the resulting frailty from a fall and an extended stay in hospital can increase the likelihood of them being unable to return home.

Our call for all hospitals to publish an annual dementia statement

Nobody should have to go into a hospital where they are five times as likely to have a fall as at the next nearest hospital, or are likely to have to stay twice as long. There is also no excuse for wasting £264.2 million a year on extra care needed because of falls, unnecessary extra days spent in hospital and avoidable emergency re-admissions of people with dementia.

We’re calling on Simon Stevens, NHS England Chief Executive, to ensure that all hospital trusts in England publish an annual ‘dementia statement’ setting out the quality of dementia care they provide. This will arm patients with information about their local hospital and drive improvements throughout the system.

How can you help?

It takes a few minutes to send a message to Simon Stevens and demand better care for people with dementia in hospitals. Help us fix dementia care. Take action today.

The Department of Health’s Voluntary Sector Update and News

The Department of Health (DoH) Voluntary Sector Partnership Team have issued their latest newsletter for the voluntary sector across England.

The Voluntary Sector Partnership Team works to embed the value of the voluntary and community sector in to mainstream policy development within DH and build stronger partnerships with the sector.

Click here to download the newsletter




Parenting 2000’s community bike project Tyred Rides (Ages 13-19, Wednesdays 5pm – 7pm)

Aged 13-19? Spare time after school? Then come along to our community bike project…

  • Learn how to repair and maintain your pedal cycle.
  • Try your hand at building your own bike.
  • Help fix up bikes donated to us so we can sell them back to the community

Wednesday evenings 5pm – 7pm
Alchemy Hall (rear of the Parenting 2000, Mornington Road) (map)

Click here to download the information poster

For more information, please call Emma or Paul on 01704 380047

Tyred Rides & Alchemy are youth projects run by Parenting 2000.

Parenting 2000 is a registered charity (no. 1042989) and company limited by guarantee (no. 2997217) Registered Office: Parenting 2000, The Lodge, Mornington Road, Southport, PR9 0TS Tel: 01704 380047 Fax: 01704 535354

South Sefton CCG to hold event in support of World Cancer Day

In support of World Cancer Day, NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is holding a raft of events at the recently opened Strand by Me shop in Bootle.

Global World Cancer Day takes place on 4 February uniting the planet population in the fight against cancer. It aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness and educating people about the illness.

The event at the community and health shop inside Bootle’s Strand shopping centre will take place over five days from Monday 1 February. It will see the CCG, Macmillan Cancer Support, Cancer Research UK, Aintree University Hospital and Sefton Pensioners’ Advocacy Centre (SPAC) offering advice to those living with and beyond cancer.

WCD graphic

Dr Debbie Harvey, a Macmillan GP from NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “The event is a chance for those affected by cancer in the area to come together and meet like-minded people as well as getting some useful advice.

“We want to make it easier for people to get the information they need to support them living with cancer. People often say they are not aware of the help available locally so we want to improve that. We hope that this event builds awareness of what is out there in the community and is beneficial.”

A practice nurse from NHS South Sefton CCG will also be on site to speak to people about cervical cancer and how important it is for women to have regular screenings, following on from Cervical Cancer Prevention Week (24-30 January 2016).

Davina Hanlon, consultant and cancer screening lead at Public Health, Sefton Council, said: “We really support events like this as they are so beneficial in reminding people what is out there to support them. Thousands of lives are saved each year from people going for cancer screenings and I can’t stress enough how important it is to have them.

“There are three types of screenings; cervical for women aged 25-64, breast for 50-70 year old women and bowel which is a home testing kit offered to men and women aged 60-74. You will receive letters when you are due an appointment and I would urge you to book.”

The full schedule for the week-long event at Strand by Me is below:

  • Monday 1 February

Macmillan information and resources drop in

  • Tuesday 2 February

Specialist nurses from Aintree University Hospital will be on hand to speak to visitors about Breast, Bladder, Kidney, Prostate and Bowel Cancer.

  • Wednesday 3 and Thursday 4 February

Cancer Research UK will have ‘Smokerlyzer’ Carbon Monoxide breath tests and can offer BMI checks and general health checks over the two days.

A practice nurse from NHS South Sefton CCG will also be on site to chat to those affected by cancer and to encourage women to go for regular cervical screening tests.

  • Friday 5 February

Sefton Pensioners’ Advocacy Centre (SPAC) information day

No need to book, just pop in on the day and there is also a private room available for confidential meetings if required.

Strand by Me opened in September 2015 and is managed by Sefton CVS in partnership with NHS South Sefton CCG. For more information visit:

Charity Commission issues warning to the VCF sector on mandate fraud

The regulator urges charities to review their financial controls so they don’t fall prey to fraudsters who try to persuade them to change direct debits or standing orders to their benefit

Mandates: charities urged to watch out for fraud
Mandates: charities urged to watch out for fraud

The Charity Commission has urged charities to review their financial controls to avoid falling foul of mandate fraud, in which people or organisations are persuaded to change direct debits or standing orders to bank accounts controlled by fraudsters.

The regulator issued a notice today saying it had become aware of mandate fraud attempts in which the fraudster had been able to use the email address of a regular contact at a legitimate organisation to deceive charities into changing their bank details.

This type of fraud can also involve the fraudster impersonating an organisation by using direct mail, using headed paper and a company logo to lend credibility to the attempt.

The commission said it recommended that trustees and charity professionals familiarise themselves with the Metropolitan Police’s mandate fraud advice and ensure that the charity has sound authorisation and monitoring procedures in place for changing bank details and managing payments.

The regulator said that any request to change bank account details was an unusual occurrence and should be treated with suspicion.

Its advice on how to avoid falling foul of such attempts included checking all requests for a change of bank details using contact information held separately by the charity and by being suspicious of any such requests until independently verified.

Michelle Russell, director of investigations, monitoring and enforcement at the Charity Commission, said the cases the regulator heard about increasingly involved cunning tactics by fraudsters to gain the trust of their victims.

“At the heart of charity is trust, but when it comes to control of charity finances it’s crucial that vigilance and caution are the key watchwords,” she said.

“It is also a timely reminder for trustees and senior charity staff to reflect on how fraud-aware their employees and volunteers are, and to review their charity’s financial controls.”

Merseyside Police Commissioner asks the VCF network for their views on police funding

Merseyside’s Police Commissioner is asking local people if they would be willing to pay a little extra to protect local police.

After six years of austerity, the Government announced in December that it would not cut the police budget any further. However, in his calculations the Chancellor actually included a 0.6% cut to Merseyside Police’s grant that he assumed would be made up by local people paying more towards policing through their Council Tax.

In a letter later sent to Police Commissioners, it was confirmed that they would be expected to increase the police precept part of the local council tax in order to maintain the current levels of funding for their police service.

This means that if Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Jane Kennedy chooses not to increase the police precept by 1.95% as anticipated by the Government, the police’s budget will effectively be cut by 0.6% – the equivalent of £1.35m. This cut puts at risk about 26 police officer posts.

Now Jane is asking local people whether they would be willing to contribute an extra 4p a week on their annual Council Tax bill to make up for the Government shortfall and make sure she is able to balance the budget.

The proposed increase expected by the Government works out as about £2 a year extra for a Band A household – the lowest Council Tax category and the amount paid by the majority of tax payers on Merseyside. This would increase the police element of tax payers’ bills from £106.45 to £108.53.

Jane said: “While the Government’s dramatic U-turn on cuts of up to 40% on our police service came as a huge relief last year, the Chancellor was only able to say that he was protecting the police budget by assuming that local tax payers would pay more.

“The Chancellor did not consult local people, he just put together the police’s budget on the expectation that the residents of Merseyside would make up the difference. This has effectively tied my hands – if I don’t increase the amount of council tax collected towards policing, the Force will lose out.

“Merseyside Police has already had its budget cut by more than £77m over the last six years. This has led to the loss of more than 1,600 officers, PCSOs and staff.  This is all in a context of rising crime and major budget cuts to our community safety partners. We cannot afford to lose any more.

“I am therefore asking people if they would be willing to contribute an extra 4p a week to help balance the books against this cut by the government and protect vital frontline police services.”

In previous years the Government has made grants available to those Police Commissioners who did not increase their precept, but this now been scrapped leaving Jane with no choice but to increase the precept if she is to set a balanced budget.

By increasing the precept by 1.95%, the Commissioner can raise enough money to cover the Government’s cut and protect local officer jobs.

People are invited to have their say through an online survey at by 1st February. The Commissioner will also be holding a series of road shows, one in each Local Authority area with two in Liverpool, to ask people for their views.

Time and Date Location
4pm-6pm Monday 25th January Asda Huyton
Huyton Lane
L36 7TX
12.30-2.30pm Tuesday 26th January Asda Walton,
Utting Avenue,
L4 9XU
1.30-3.30pm Wednesday 27th January Asda Superstore
222 Grange Rd,
CH41 6EB
1pm -3pm Thursday 28th January Sainsburys,
Liverpool Road,
L23 2SA
10am – 12 noon Friday 29th January Asda St Helens
Kirkland Street,
St Helens,
WA10 2EF
2.30-4.30pm Monday 1st February Liverpool South
Venue TBC

The Commissioner added: “I know that everyone is feeling the pinch at the moment and I don’t make this proposal lightly, but unfortunately the Government is forcing me to ask people for a little more if Merseyside Police is to maintain the same high level of service the public have come to expect.

“Looking ahead, we are also facing increases in national insurance, pay and pensions, all of which make it even more important to keep the budget balanced now.

“Before I make any final decision I want to hear the views of local people.”

Take part in the survey here at 



Homeless charity Emmaus Merseyside’s January Furniture Sale

• Sofas from £30
• Dining tables from £40
• Beds from £30
• Wardrobes from £10

Visit the Emmaus Merseyside superstore and see what furniture bargains you can find. Emmaus can deliver your items across Merseyside.

Click here for full details

38 Sandy Road
L21 3TW
EmmausMerseyside ©
Emmaus Merseyside 2016
Registered Charity no. 1110220

Sefton’s Free 16 week training programme “Aspiring Instructors”

Do you want to work in the Sport and Fitness or Outdoor Activities Industry?

Aspiring Instructors is a 16 week training programme that has been developed for those wanting to work in the sport, fitness or outdoor activity industries. The programme includes a practical work placement with a local employer, nationally recognised qualifications and free mentoring, support and advice to help you move into a new career.

Eligibility criteria:
· Must be a resident of Sefton
· Subject to a satisfactory DBS check
· Some work programme clients may not be eligible

(Please note that applicants who are on the DWP Work Programme will need to have clearance from their provider before commencing the course).

Please call Sefton@Work on 0151 934 2610 to attend our Open Day and hear more about the opportunities available.

Aspiring Instructors is a popular course and places are limited.


Please call Sefton@Work on 0151 934 2610 to attend our Open Day and hear more about the opportunities available.

Become a school governor in 2016!

Are you passionate about the education of children and young people?

As a school governor you can play a vital role in your school community and the outcomes for pupils.

Sefton Council’s Governor Services provide a wide range of training and learning opportunities to support you in your role as school governor.

If you think this vital role could be for you, visit the Governor Services webpages, complete the online application form or email Governor Services.


NHS Southport and Formby CCG honoured at Health Business Awards

NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has received the clinical commissioning accolade at the Health Business Awards 2015.

Hosted by Doctor Mark Porter, medical correspondent for The Times and known for his work with BBC’s The One Show, the award ceremony took place at the Grange Hotel in St Paul’s, London. NHS Foundation Trusts, CCGs, Collaborates, Partnerships and Air Ambulance Services came together to celebrate the very best within the NHS.

The clinical commissioning award, sponsored by Fujitsu, recognised the recently formed CCG sector and an organisation which has quickly made an impact to reduce hospital admissions through preventative practice.

Sharon Forrester, cardiovascular disease programme lead at the CCG, who collected the award said: “As a CCG we are honoured to have received this award, it is fantastic that our work is being recognised and that it’s making a difference in Southport and Formby. Diabetes is a common health condition and it’s really important that patients have access to the right advice and treatment which we have worked hard to promote.

“A huge thanks to the health business awards for choosing us as the winner and for a fantastic event bringing NHS staff together.”

NHS England data ranked NHS Southport and Formby CCG as the best in the country in supporting adult diabetics to control their blood glucose levels in 2013/14. With approximately 6,500 people in the area living with diabetes, the CCG commissions diabetes services with a real focus on prevention, educating people on how to successfully manage the disease in order to reduce the risk of future complications.

The CCG also works to ensure that patients at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes have access to lifestyle advice to help them stay healthy and well.

Southport & Ormskirk Hospitals lift restrictions on visiting hours

Friends and family will be able to spend much longer with patients at Southport and Ormskirk hospitals from 18th December 2015.

Wards will open for visiting at midday and stay open until 8.30pm, seven days a week.

The decision by Simon Featherstone, Director of Nursing and Quality, follows a successful trial at Southport hospital earlier this year.

“The support and company of friends and family is an important part of any patient’s recovery but traditional visiting times don’t always fit round people’s working lives and personal commitments,” said Simon.

“We also know some visitors want to play a more active role in the care of the patient they’re visiting, such as helping at mealtimes and providing a familiar voice in unfamiliar surroundings, so I hope this more flexible approach will help them.”

He added: “To make this work, we also need visitors to help us too. We ask that there should be only two visitors per bed and, from time to time, we may ask visitors to leave the bedside during personal care for patients or consultant ward rounds.”

Still time for Sefton residents to get the flu jab!

Residents across Sefton are still being urged to get the flu jab this winter.

The flu vaccination is one of the most effective ways to reduce harm from flu as it reduces risk of serious illness, hospitalisation and even death among those who are most at risk.

Free flu vaccinations are being offered to all pregnant women, all children aged 2 to 4, residents of all ages with a long term health condition and everyone aged 65 and over. Most people who are eligible can get vaccinated at their local GP practice.

In addition, this year children in school years one and two have been offered the flu vaccination and a programme has been carried out across the borough offering the spray.

The flu vaccine for children is given as a single dose of nasal spray squirted up each nostril. Not only is it needle-free (a big advantage for children), the nasal spray works even better than the injected flu vaccine.

It’s quick and painless and means children are less likely to become ill if they come into contact with the flu virus.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Cabinet Member Health and Wellbeing, said: “There is still time for residents to get the flu jab or spray.

“Flu is a highly contagious illness that spreads rapidly and can be very unpleasant for children and adults alike. Symptoms include fever, chills, aching muscles, headache, stuffy nose, dry cough and sore throat lasting up to a week.

“By having the vaccination it will go a long way to protect yourself against such nasty symptoms.”

Pippa Rose, who is a practice nurse lead for both clinical commissioning groups in Sefton, said: “As well as planning your Christmas shopping, remember to book your flu jab before the colder weather sets in.

“Having a flu jab isn’t just about protecting you from what can be serious effects of the flu but also helps reduce the spread of flu to those around you. We also encourage carers to get protected too.

“It’s really good news that a greater number of children can now benefit from the free vaccine. However, we mustn’t forget that it’s equally important for expectant mums, those aged over 65, or anyone of any age who has diabetes, chest complaints like bronchitis and kidney problems to get their vaccination.

“If you are not sure if you qualify for a free vaccine, just contact your practice and they’ll be happy to offer advice.”

You can find a wide range of information about the annual flu immunisation campaign at

Don’t forget prescriptions this festive season

With less than two weeks to go until Christmas, people with long-term health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, lung and heart disease are being reminded not to leave it too late to get their repeat prescriptions whilst only ordering what they need.

Many GP surgeries will be closed on the bank holidays over Christmas and New Year, so it is wise for people to think about the medication they will need before the festive period begins.

Dr Fiona Lemmens, local GP and NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group urgent and emergency care clinical director said, “It is estimated that 30% of people in Liverpool live with one or more long term health conditions. We want to make sure that people with these illnesses have a good Christmas and New Year.

“The last thing we want is for people to run out of their medication, become poorly and have to spend part of their holiday in hospital. It is important though that patients only order what they need, to prevent unnecessary waste.”

Dr Craig Gillespie, chair of NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “It can be hard in the busy run-up to Christmas to find time to look after yourself. But a simple call to your GP surgery or a visit to your high street pharmacy could make all the difference.

Your pharmacy can also give you useful advice on how to deal with winter bugs, such as coughs, colds, sore throats and the flu and save you time booking an appointment with your GP. If you feel you need to see a doctor, we’ve funded extra appointments at your surgery over the busy winter and holiday period to make it easier to get seen.”

NHS teams across Liverpool and south Sefton are reminding people to examine their options reinforcing the message that A&E and 999 services are for life-threatening and serious conditions.

Your local high street pharmacy can help you deal with minor illnesses and complaints such as coughs, colds, flu, stomach upsets, aches and sprains. To find your local NHS services, go to use the free service finder.

Dr Lemmens continued, “Over the last six months or so, 95 urgent out of hours appointments were used in Liverpool to get repeat prescriptions, that’s around 135 GP hours and equates to a cost of almost £30,000.

“Being better prepared and ordering prescriptions early enough, will save the NHS money and help you have a more hassle free festive season.”

Mersey Care NHS Trust, one of the leading mental health trusts in the UK, has also urged their patients and carers to ensure they plan ahead for their prescriptions over the Christmas period.

“Many people with mental health issues may have long term conditions that require ongoing medication,” said a Mersey Care NHS spokesman.

“GP practices are likely to close on Christmas Eve and not open again until 29 December and close again on New Year’s Eve until 4 January. We don’t want people to be caught out unnecessarily, which is why we are urging people to submit their requests for repeat prescriptions well in advance.”

Move More Southport and Formby

Move More Southport and Formby is a partnership between Active Lifestyles, Macmillan Cancer Support and Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group.

The programme aims to support anyone living with cancer to become more active. Offering its own physical and wellness activities, such as a gentle circuit class and relaxation session, a low impact chair class, yoga, as well as use of facilities at Dunes Leisure centre in Southport and Formby Pool at subsidised rate. As well as support in helping cancer patients in becoming more aware, it will facilitate their participation in physical activity sessions that are readily available locally within the community, targeted to specific needs and interests.

Research is providing a growing body of evidence that being physically active during and after cancer treatment helps to provide a variety of health and well-being benefits. Notable among these is a significant reduction in the risk of cancer recurrence for some patients.

Being active can help benefit cancer patients in a number of ways:
• Reduce tiredness and some treatment side effects
• Reduce anxiety and depression
• Improve your mood and quality of life
• Strengthen your muscles, joints and bones
• Look after your heart and reduce the risk of other health problems

Those referred to the programme will attend an initial appointment for a lifestyle review, and jointly agree with their coordinator an individualised physical activity and wellness plan. After 12 weeks of activity there will be another appointment to discuss on going activity and review of the programme. Physical activity prescription is adjusted according to treatment and health status. Our coordinators will monitor each person providing motivational support throughout the 12 week period and also up to a year post referral to help ensure their continuation of a healthy lifestyle.

Those Suitable for the Move More Programme Include:
Those who have had a cancer diagnosis- post surgery, and post treatment.
Plus any of the following will also be suitable for referral:

• Obesity (BMI 30-39)
•  Morbid obesity (BMI >39)
•  Hypertension (>180/100)
•  Mental health problems (medicated and stable)
•  IGR
•  Diabetes Type I and II
•  Stable treated angina
•  Heart Failure (not acute or unstable, via phase III only)
•  Post MI or re-vascular surgery AND: Completed Cardiac Rehabilitation with an ETT and clinically stable, awaiting no further investigations.

Referral to the programme can be made by your Cancer clinical nurse specialist, GP or practice nurse.

If you would like more information about the programme please contact Lucy Holmes or Tess Harrison (Macmillan Physical activity and Wellness coordinators) on 0151 934 2352 or email on .

Support Seaforth Community Shop’s hampers appeal this Christmas with Sefton 4 Good!

Seaforth Community Shop operate a Community Pantry providing emergency food during times of crisis throughout the year. To access this support, families are referred by Health Visitors, Midwives, GP, YOT, IMPACT, FIT, Social Workers, School mentors and Teaching staff.  The families have at least two children. They are not entitled to Food bank vouchers but do live in significant food poverty.

Seaforth Community Shop try to alleviate extra pressure put on families during school holidays such as Easter, Summer and Christmas by providing food and hygiene hampers.  So far this year, they have supplied approximately 700 hampers to families across Sefton.

The shop anticipates requests for support at Christmas for 400 families. We get some of our food from membership of Fare Share and buy the rest ourselves, apart from a meat voucher which is supplied by 23 Foundation for our families.



Click here to visit the Sefton 4 Good fundraising page

Click here to go straight to BT MyDonate and support the work of Seaforth Community Shop

In addition to donating to Seaforth Community Shop, they are also seeking a number of items to be included int he hampers. Please see below for a list of items which can be donated to Seafroth Community Shop:

  • Tuna
  • Soup
  • Corned Beef
  • Ham
  • Hot dogs
  • sweet corn
  • carrots
  • peas
  • Coffee
  • tea
  • sugar
  • cereal
  • jam
  • rice pudding
  • tinned fruit
  • custard powder
  • pasta sauce
  • pasta
  • curry sauce
  • long grain rice
  • biscuits
  • tub of sweets such as roses/quality street
  • soap powder
  • shampoo
  • conditioner
  • washing up liquid
  • shower gel
  • baby wipes
  • AA batteries

For more information, or to contact Seaforth Community Shop directly, please see below:

Seaforth Community Shop
73 Seaforth Road
L21 3TX


Phone: 07806 286990


Ask Your Pharmacy week launches in Sefton…

Pharmacists in Sefton’s two clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) will be reminding residents about the range of services available in local chemists, and encouraging them to make appropriate use of NHS services during Ask Your Pharmacist week (9-15 November). 

Often, people make unnecessary trips to the GP or even A&E, when their neighbourhood chemist could help instead. In recent years, pharmacists have expanded their role, and now provide a wide range of clinical and public health services, within easy reach of the people who need them most. However, whilst most people go first to their chemist for medicines and medicines advice, many don’t know about the range of other healthcare services on offer in chemists.

NHS South Sefton CCG and NHS Southport and Formby CCG have made this easier with their Care at the Chemist scheme, providing fast expert advice and medications for a wide range of conditions, without the need for a doctor’s appointment.  

Mr Wear, who has been visiting Ryders Chemist in Formby since 1988, said: “I have been coming here a long time now and the pharmacists have always been approachable. I use Care at the Chemist a lot and find it extremely useful, the advice they give is invaluable and it can save a lot of time rather than getting an appointment at the doctors.”  

Susanne Lynch is the CCGs’ head of medicines management and the Sefton mum of two and uses Care at the Chemist if her boys are under the weather.

Susanne said: “Our Care at the Chemist service helps keep people up to speed with what is now on offer on their doorstep in pharmacies – a uniquely accessible healthcare professional workforce who can deliver expert medicines advice and an expanding list of public health services. 

“Your local pharmacist is a good first contact point for advice on many common health concerns – it is certainly mine. While most people will go first to their pharmacist for medicines advice, many don’t know about the range of other healthcare services provided by pharmacies on their doorstep and the level of expertise there.  Pharmacists are available without appointment and are able to deal with a wide range of ailments, as well as offering uniquely accessible advice on maintaining and improving your health. 

“Here in Sefton we promote this regularly through our Care at the Chemist scheme but this awareness week will promote this wider and will hopefully alert patients to the services on offer at the chemists on their doorsteps.” 

Activities are planned across the country during Ask Your Pharmacist Week including health checks in shopping centres, community talks, chemist window displays and visits to chemists by local dignitaries. 

Anyone of any age who is registered with a Sefton GP can get Care at the Chemist. Simply call into your chemist and ask to be registered onto the scheme. It is best if you use your usual chemist but if you are using one that does not know you; you will be asked to bring proof of identity. 

CQC inspectors Publish Reports on 54 Adult Social Care Services in the North of England

In the past week the Care Quality Commission has published a further 54 reports on the quality of care provided by adult social care services across the North that have been inspected under its new approach.

Following recent inspections, 26 have been rated as Good, 24 have been Requires Improvement and four have been rated Inadequate.

Under CQC’s new programme of inspections, all of England’s adult social care services are being given a rating according to whether they are safe, effective, caring, responsive and well led.

Debbie Westhead, CQC’s Deputy Chief Inspector for Adult Social Care in the North, said:

“People are entitled to services which provide safe, effective, compassionate and high quality care.  If that is what we find on inspection – we give the service a rating of Good, or Outstanding.

“If we find that a service requires improvement, we will expect them to provide us with a full plan setting out how they will address the issue.  We will share our findings with local commissioners, and we will return in due course to check that they have made the required improvements.

Whenever we find a service to be Inadequate, we will consider taking further action on behalf of the people who use the service.”

Full reports on all 54 inspections are available at:

Alzheimer’s Society: Your thoughts on the ‘This Is Me’ information leaflet

Do you use the popular Alzheimer’s Society-RCN leaflet This Is Me‘ in your work at a hospital, care home or other setting?

Alzheimer’s Society are revising ‘This Is Me’ and are very interested to hear from users how they might improve it. Getting involved is not likely to be very onerous.

Click here to view the This Is Me leaflet

If you have any suggestions for improving this leaflet please contact Tim Beanland at

Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust: Improving your services at Litherland Walk-In Centre

Litherland Walk-in Centre is one of five Walk in Centres delivered by Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust and provides fast and convenient access to nurse-led advice and treatment for minor injuries and ailments.

From 26 October until early in the New Year, upgrade refurbishment work will be undertaken to ensure that patients and staff have the best facilities.

The refurbishment includes a new triage area, larger treatment rooms to assess and treat our patients, a new reception area with additional seating capacity and improved privacy and a small space for children to play.

Parking will be restricted whilst the work is undertaken, therefore please allow additional travel time for your journey.

The refurbishment work will be undertaken in a phased approach to ensure there will be minimal disruption to patients visiting the Walk-in Centre.

Liverpool Community Health  also delivers Walk-in Centres across the city these are located at:

  • Liverpool City Centre NHS Walk in Centre (Mon – Fri 7.00am-10.00pm, weekends 9.00am-10.00pm)
  • Smithdown Children’s NHS Walk in Centre (Mon – Fri 8.00am-8.00pm, weekends 10.00am-4.00pm)
  • Old Swan NHS Walk in Centre (7.00am – 10.00pm every day)
  • South Liverpool NHS Walk In Centre (Mon – Fri 9.00am-9.00pm, weekends 9.00am-5.00pm)

Please consider visiting one of our Walk-in Centres before attending A&E with a minor injury or illness. Patients are reminded that A&E Units at the local hospitals are for serious and life threatening injuries.

NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for any medical help but is not a 999 emergency, calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.

If you have any concerns or would like to share any feedback, please contact the Liverpool Community Health’s Patient Advice and Liaison Service  0300 7900 224.

For further information visit

Southport & Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust seek Dining Companion Volunteers!

What is a Dining Companion?

A dining companion is a volunteer who sits with a patient on a one to one basis and provides assistance to help them eat.  As well as helping the patient with eating, the dining companion can chat to the patient and encourage them to eat.  They keep nursing staff informed about what the patient has eaten and whether the patient has enjoyed their food.

 The Problem

In 2006, AGE UK produced a document called Hungry to be Heard as part of a national campaign to increase standards within all hospitals.  Hungry to be Heard provided a seven step improvement plan for hospitals to ensure elderly patients received better care and attention during mealtimes. 

Often elderly patients need some assistance with cutting up their food, holding utensils etc., and there is a risk they may become malnourished if they don’t have the support they need.  Malnourishment increases the risk of infection and can significantly increase recovery time. 

The Solution

The Trust operates a ‘Red Tray Scheme’ and volunteers are placed on wards to assist with menus, mealtimes, drinks and other social duties such as chatting to patients to alleviate the boredom and loneliness that can be experienced whilst staying in hospital.  Patients who are identified by staff as requiring additional support at mealtimes will have their food served on a ‘Red Tray’.  Ward staff and volunteers then ensure help is given with the meal.  This is vital to some patients who do not receive any visitors and could be lonely or anxious or may be suffering from a form of dementia or Alzheimer’s. 

Becoming a Volunteer

Volunteers go through an application process including a Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check and Health Assessment Check.  They will be invited for an interview and if they are successful, will be recruited as a volunteer at Southport & Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust. 

The process is kept as informal as possible as good communication skills are vital in the volunteer role and it’s important for the applicants to feel comfortable. 

If you would like any further information, please contact Chris Pilkington on 01704 704955 or email

COMPASS: Setting a new course!

COMPASS is a leading, voluntary sector service deliverer of community counselling, NHS contracts, work place support services and professional development training.

At the heart of Compass’ work is our flagship, donation-based community counselling service delivered by highly skilled and trained voluntary counsellors.

COMPASS has set a new course.

To support the board of trustees achieve an ambitious long term plan of action designed to protect, extend and enhance this vital service. which includes attaining service accreditation with British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy and reach Star Standard, a quality standard that is designed to enable voluntary sector groups to demonstrate their effectiveness and contribution to local agendas, the Compass Council of Management are pleased to announce the following;

Gary Williams has been appointed Vice Chair of the Compass Council of Management. A member of the BACP, Gary works as a counsellor for COMPASS and in private practice offering person centred counselling & solution focused brief therapy for members of the emergency services & performing artistes in the entertainment industry.

Andrew Reeves joins the Compass board of trustees, Andrew is a BACP Senior Accredited Counsellor/Psychotherapist (Snr. MBACP) as well as a Fellow of BACP (FBACP). who originally trained as a social worker before then training in counselling and psychotherapy.

Andrew has researched therapy with suicidal clients and people who self-injure and self-harm for over 15 years and have written extensively about this.Over the years he has delivered highly-regarded workshops to many thousands of therapists, psychologists, mental health workers and teachers and have a national and international reputation for delivering engaging, inclusive, insightful and humorous training workshops.

Registered Office:
151 Dale Street Liverpool L2 2AH
Compass is Registered in England & Wales as a Registered Charity No. 700335  and a Company Limited by Guarantee No.2235061

Sefton Council: Council Tax e-billing Now Available!

Residents can now register and switch to e-Billing which allows them to receive their Council Tax bill, along with all the supporting information, electronically.

Through the new system, which has just gone live, as soon as a Council Tax bill is available an email notification is sent out.

Each year around 125,000 annual bills for Council Tax are issued in March and around 120,000 daily bills per year to Sefton residents.

Switching to E-Billing saves money on printing and postage along with protecting the environment by reducing the need for paper and envelopes.

Anyone who signs up before December 15, 2015 will be entered into a prize draw to win a Samsung Galaxy tablet in time for Christmas.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Cabinet Member Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services, said: “Registering for E-billing is simple and easy and most importantly it is free.

“It speeds things up as you get to see your Council Tax bill as soon as it is available using a secure email system.

“Anyone who signs up to the system will always know where their bill is and they will also be doing their bit for the environment as it will stop the need for using paper, printing and envelopes. It will also help us to save money in the process.”

To sign up to start receiving your future Council Tax bills by email please visit

You will need your Council Tax account number and a valid email address.

CQC Inspectors Highlight Outstanding and Good Care as Reports are Published…

The Chief Inspector of General Practice has found another 50 GP practices to be Good following recent inspections by the Care Quality Commission.

This week, CQC has published a further 65 reports on the quality of care provided by GP practices that have been inspected by specialist teams of inspectors.

Of those, 50 of the practices have been rated as Good, ten have been rated Requires Improvement, two have been rated Outstanding, two have been rated Inadequate and one was a focused inspection.*

Under CQC’s new programme of inspections, all of England’s GP practices are being given a rating according to whether they are safe, effective, caring, responsive and well led. 77 GP practices have been rated as Outstanding so far.  

Professor Steve Field, Chief Inspector of General Practice, said:

“After more than 2,000 inspections we now have the evidence that the vast majority of England’s GP practices are providing a service which is safe, effective, caring, responsive and well led. We have also found so many practices going far beyond the call of duty to care for patients to provide an outstanding service to their patients.

“But, unfortunately, there are still areas of practice that are inadequate and unacceptable. Patients have a right to expect high quality care from every GP practice. Where improvement is required we will expect the practice to take the necessary steps to address the issues and we will re-inspect at a later date to check that those improvements have been made.

“Practices rated Inadequate that are put into Special Measures are offered additional support by NHS England which is working with the RCGP to help the practice get back on track. We have already seen the benefits of this approach when we re-inspect.”

Full reports on all 65 inspections are available at:

Click Here for GP Practices listed by CCG area and rating

Healthwatch England Chair update: Letter from Anna Bradley…

A letter from Anna Bradley, Chair of Healthwatch England – 

“I wanted to let you know that since I am coming to the end of my extended term as Chair of Healthwatch England, the Department of Health have begun the process of recruiting my successor.

Ministers intend to appoint a new Chair for the next phase of Healthwatch England’s development and therefore an advert will appear shortly as part of the standard process for making public appointments. We will keep you all posted as we know more about the process and when an appointment has been made.

My term concludes on 31 March 2016, with the new Chair set to take up the reins from 1 April.

At the last Healthwatch England Committee meeting, Jane Mordue was appointed as the organisation’s first Vice Chair. As well as supporting me and my successor, the Vice Chair will play a vital role in ensuring continuity in leadership for the organisation during this time of transition.

I also wanted to take this opportunity to update you regarding the recruitment of the new CEO. In order for the new Chair to be able to play a role in the recruitment of the new CEO we have decided to recruit someone on a fixed term basis to lead the organisation during the transition. 

As you know, Katherine announced in September that she would be leaving Healthwatch. She will cease her full-time employment at Christmas but has said she can be available on a part-time basis in the New Year to aid the handover.

I appreciate that this represents a substantial amount of change for Healthwatch England and that this may feel unsettling. However, I believe we have together built very strong foundations for Healthwatch. I am very proud of the many examples of the value that Healthwatch is adding to health and social care across the country and it is a pleasure to see the rewards of all the efforts we have all put into building a strong and effective network over the past three years.

We will continue to keep you updated on both recruitment processes over the months ahead. In the meantime, do not hesitate to contact myself or Katherine or your Development Officer if you have any queries.

Kind regards,

Anna Bradley
Healthwatch Sefton”

NHS CCGs in Southport, Formby and West Lancashire are encouraging people to ‘Help yourself to stay healthy this winter…’

NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Southport, Formby and West Lancashire are encouraging people this self-care week to be aware of how they can look after themselves this winter.

By keeping fit and healthy, individuals can take control of their own health, manage minor illnesses and effectively manage long-term conditions.

If you do need further help, think carefully and examine the number of options available to you across Southport, Formby and West Lancashire:

• Through the NHS Care at the Chemist (minor aliments) scheme your local pharmacist can provide confidential, expert advice and medicines for a range of common illnesses and ailments, without the need to see a GP.
• When your local GP surgery is closed call NHS 111, who will direct you to the appropriate service available to you in your area
• If you have a long-term condition, prepare for winter by ensuring you do not run out of your medication but do only order what you need. Many pharmacists offer repeat prescription services without the need to see your GP.
• Use 111 rather than calling 999 for non-emergencies. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.
Claire Heneghan, chief nurse of NHS West Lancashire CCG, “It’s important that people know when and how they can treat themselves and when they should seek further advice. By taking simple steps to look after yourself this winter, you can have a significant impact on your health and wellbeing.”

Dr Robert Caudwell, chair of NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “When it comes to treating minor ailments and illnesses, examine the options available to you. You can get plenty of advice from your local chemist as well as on the NHS Choices website. Remember, the accident and emergency departments and ambulance services are for life-threatening conditions. By selecting the right option, you can help the NHS to direct their focus to the patients who need it the most.”

More information on how everyone can use self-care to improve their health and wellbeing is available on the NHS Choices website:

Breathe Easy group supports Self-Care Week!

South Sefton patients who have set up a new support group for residents with breathing illnesses are inviting people to come along to an event they are holding during Self Care Week (16-22 November) to find out about how they can better manage their own wellbeing. 

On Wednesday 18 November Breathe Easy South Sefton is held a coffee day in the Strand By Me shop in Bootle Strand, where residents can find out more about the group and the range of support available locally for people with breathing conditions. 

After attending a respiratory and self-management training course organised by NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Sefton Council for Voluntary Services (CVS), the patients decided to launch their new Breathe Easy group. The group launched in June 2015 and they come together once a month with local residents in south Sefton to share their knowledge.

As well as being part of Self Care Week, the group’s event on Wednesday also marks World Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) day. Group members will be on hand to discuss self-management of respiratory conditions and they will be joined by NHS stop smoking services, offering advice on how to quit. 

Mick Maher, chair of the Breathe Easy group, said: “I wanted to go on the self-management course originally as I was diagnosed with a lung condition myself and had no idea what it was or how to deal with it. Then I thought, along with others on the course, that people in the community would really benefit from having that knowledge whether it’s for them or for someone they know, so we set up the group and decided to put an event on during Self Care Week.” 

Jenny Kristiansen, respiratory lead at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), explains: “Our six week course was launched back in January this year as patients were telling us they’d like more support to help them better manage conditions like COPD or asthma. It is proving really popular with patients and the fact that this course has led to the Breathe Easy group being established in south Sefton is fantastic – I can’t recommend their events highly enough and think the day at Strand By Me will be really beneficial to those with similar conditions.” 

The Breathe Easy group meets monthly in south Sefton and organises talks from a wide range of other local services, like Healthwatch Sefton giving patients the chance to hear about the support available to them in the area. 

One person out of seven in the UK is affected by a lung condition and the British Lung Foundation, Breathe Easy group, NHS South Sefton CCG and Sefton CVS want those people to know support is available for every one of them.  

This year the theme for Self Care Week is ‘Self Care for Life’ and the aim is to raise awareness of how to support people to be healthy throughout their life. Whether it is about preventing ill health by choosing healthy options that will impact positively on their physical health and mental wellbeing, taking care of their own minor ailments at home or understanding how to manage more serious conditions. For more information please click here.

For more information on ‘Breathe Easy Sefton South’ or to become a member, please visit: 

Alzheimer’s Society: Making Your Home Dementia Friendly

The Alzheimer’s Society have just launched a new 32 page booklet ‘Making your home dementia friendly’. It’s a practical guide for people with dementia who are living at home. It explains how to create or adapt the home environment to make it a  safe and familiar place.

 Please click the link below for the PDF version. You can also order copies, free of charge by calling 0300 3035933 or emailing

It’s a great guide with lots of hints and tips, well worth a look.

Click here to download the booklet

Sefton’s offer for disabled children

If children and young people age 0-25yrs have special educational needs and / or a disability (SEND), Sefton’s Local Offer website will provide them, their families and professionals with accessible information about services and support available locally.

The Local Offer helps families to understand what services they can expect from a range of local agencies, including statutory entitlements, eligibility and referral criteria. The Local Offer also makes clear what is available from a wide range of services, including:

  • Early years settings
  • Schools (including academies and free schools) & colleges
  • Sport and recreation
  • Health services
  • Social care
  • Employment, further education and volunteering

For all enquiries on the Local Offer, or to provide feedback, contact Sefton’s Information, Advice and Support Service on 0151 934 3334 or by email.

NYAS advocacy and Independent Visiting Service are currently looking to recruit volunteers in Southport!

NYAS advocacy and Independent Visiting Service are currently looking to recruit volunteers to befriend children and young people who are looked after (in care) with Cardiff Local Authority in the Southport area. These are often children and young people who have little or no contact with their own family and who would really benefit from a long term relationship with a trusted adult.

We ask our volunteers to spare 2-4 hours once a month to visit the young person they are matched up with to undertake a joint activity together. Independent Visitors may become a significant person to a child. NYAS Independent Visitors help them to have fun, feel valued, feel listened to and help to increase their self-esteem. NYAS Independent Visitors can make a real difference in a child’s life by acting as role models and helping them to make the most of themselves, from simply listening , to helping with school work or getting them involved in activities in their communities they would never had experienced otherwise.

We ask for a minimum commitment of 2 years and that you are age 18 +. We do not ask for any specific qualifications or experience, just an ability to relate well to children and young people. NYAS provide comprehensive training, great support from experienced staff and the opportunity to meet up with other volunteers at regular intervals.

The role is hugely rewarding and really is a fantastic opportunity to make a difference to a child or young person’s life. Here’s what one of our volunteers has said about the role:

I love seeing the world through the eyes of the little girl with whom I’m matched, talking to her, sharing my insight and experiences and doing activities together. Just by being there for her every month I hope that she’s starting to know that in the chaos of her life I’m a quieter, calmer little oasis for her! The hug she gives me when I drop her off after we’ve been out on a visit makes me realise that she’s starting to see that I’m someone that she can trust. She can and that feels good!”


If you are interested in becoming a volunteer for us, then please get in touch with Elly Jones or Sylvia Lucano at our local office in Cathays, Cardiff on 02920668956, or email ,