Sefton Health Commissioners Celebrate Nurses’ Day 2018

Choosing nursing as a career offers a world of opportunities and experiences that many people wouldn’t associate with the profession. That is the message from Sefton health commissioners ahead of International Nurses’ Day 2018 which celebrates the work of nurses in dedicating themselves to caring for others.

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG are marking International Nurses’ Day 2018 by highlighting the work of their quality team which is led by the CCGs chief nurse, Debbie Fagan. The quality team is made up of qualified nurses who have since moved into commissioning and together they are responsible for ensuring that health services in Sefton are safe for the people who use them.

A relatively new member of the team is Karen Garside, who is the CCGs designated nurse for safeguarding children. Speaking about Nurses’ Day 2018, and the experiences she has had in her career, Karen said: “I’ve been a nurse for over 27 years and I really value the fact that my work makes a difference to young people all over Sefton.

“I’ve done a variety of different roles including working in a hospital, working as a health visitor and then with children, young people and their families. It was when I was a health visitor that I realised how I could make a difference for children who were at risk of harm or abuse. I worked in a mixture of deprived and affluent areas and safeguarding was a key part of this work, supporting families and working with partners to ensure children and young people were safe from harm, including physical, sexual, emotional harm and neglect.

“Although I no longer have direct contact with children and young people at an operational level, I enjoy the fact that I can still make a difference through working at a strategic level in partnership with different agencies to ensure we have the overarching systems and processes in place continue to meet their needs and ensure they are protected from harm.

“My workload is very varied and can include supporting a serious case review, checking the quality of a local health service and developing policies to tackle issues such as child exploitation. In between formal meetings, advice and support may also be required for individual cases, therefore it is very unpredictable.”

The theme of Nurses’ Day 2018 is #ThisNurse. You can find out more about Nurses’ Day, including information about the range of career options for qualified nurses, by visiting the Royal College of Nursing website:

You can watch an interview with Karen talking about her job here:

Early Identification Key to Sepsis Treatment

Everyone has a role to play in identifying and treating sepsis in its early stages. That is the message from local health commissioners who are backing a campaign to raise awareness of the illness.

Sepsis is a potentially life threatening condition which can lead to multiple organ failure and death if not identified and treated early. It is estimated that around 150,000 people a year in the UK are diagnosed with sepsis which can be treated with antibiotics if identified in its early stages.

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG are backing a campaign by Health Education England titled ‘Think Sepsis’ which is raising awareness of the illness. Local health commissioners are highlighting a different element of sepsis diagnosis and treatment every month between now and world sepsis day on September 13.

This month, the Sefton CCGs have focussed on medicines management and the role community pharmacists can play in offering support to anyone who may have concerns about the illness.

Speaking about the campaign, Susanne Lynch, head of medicines management at the CCGs, said: “Everyone has a role to play in identifying and treating sepsis, including community pharmacists. Although it would be very rare for someone to present themselves at a chemists with signs of sepsis, we need everyone to be vigilant and ensure they familiarise themselves with the symptoms and are able to respond accordingly.

“Official guidelines state that, within an hour of diagnosis of sepsis, broad-spectrum antibiotics should be administered, so getting people to hospital quickly is of paramount importance.”

People are advised to seek medical advice urgently if you’ve recently had an infection or injury and you have had possible early signs of sepsis. People should be aware of the following symptoms which may indicate a person has sepsis.

In children under five, you should go straight to A&E or call 999 if your child has any of these symptoms:

  • looks mottled, bluish or pale
  • is very lethargic or difficult to wake
  • feels abnormally cold to touch
  • is breathing very fast
  • has a rash that does not fade when you press it
  • has a fit or convulsion

In older children and adults, early symptoms of sepsis may include:

  • a high temperature (fever) or low body temperature
  • chills and shivering
  • a fast heartbeat
  • fast breathing

Anyone who would like to know more about sepsis, including further information on what symptoms to keep an eye out for, can visit the NHS Choices website:

Health commissioners support Diabetes Week

Health commissioners in Sefton are supporting national Diabetes Week 2017 (11 June – 17 June) by raising awareness of how living a healthier lifestyle can help prevent the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

In south Sefton the estimated number of people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes is 7,616 (6.02 per cent of the population) and in Southport and Formby, 6,338 (6.14 per cent of the population) but evidence exists which shows that many cases of Type 2 diabetes are preventable. People can greatly reduce their risk of developing the condition by eating a healthy diet, exercise and maintaining a healthy weight.

Every year, Type 2 diabetes costs the NHS £8.8 billion, which equates to almost 9% of its budget and causes 22,000 early deaths per year and there are currently 5 million people in England at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.If current trends persist, one in three people will be obese by 2034 and one in ten will develop Type 2 diabetes.

To minimise the risk of people being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes each year, NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG are referring those people who are picked up as at risk from a blood test to a new prevention programme.

So far, 665 Sefton residents at greatest risk of developing diabetes have been referred by their doctor to the Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP) over the last six months. Wave 1 launched in 2016 and in the first year aims to offer up to 20,000 places nationwide to people in the ‘high risk’ category. The NHS DPP will roll out to the whole country by 2020.

Those referred on to the programme get tailored, personalised help to reduce their risk of Type 2 diabetes, including education on healthy eating and lifestyle, help to lose weight and bespoke physical exercise programmes. An estimated 65 per cent of those patients who have completed the programme across England have lost weight.

Roy, age 68, from Bootle was directed to Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP) after receiving a letter from his GP. He wanted to attend to try and reduce his risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Roy found the diet, exercise and healthy living advice most useful, he said: “I learned to avoid the biscuit tin and head for the fruit bowl instead. I am also drinking more water and avoiding sugary drinks. I’ve lost about half a stone so far and I plan to continue with it as I’m so pleased with the results.”

The programme is commissioned by NHS England, in partnership with Public Health England (PHE) and Diabetes UK and the CCGs in Sefton are part of the first roll out of the programme. In Sefton it is being delivered by Living Well, Taking Control.

Dr Nigel Taylor, diabetes lead at NHS South Sefton CCG said: “We are proud to be involved in the first wave of the programme. The way it works is that people are contacted and offered a referral to the programme if their health check or a blood test taken over the last nine months flags up that they are at risk of being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes.”

Dr Doug Callow, diabetes lead at NHS Southport and Formby CCG said: “If you do receive a letter to attend the National Health Check we would urge you to take it up. If you are then referred to the programme it is just a 90 minute session for seven weeks. Once you’ve completed the programme you will receive ongoing support for 12 months and information on local activities to join if you wish.”

You can view some videos of several Sefton patients sharing their stories of the programme on the CCGs YouTube page or on their twitter account throughout the week: @NHSSSCCG

For an overview of the Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP), please visit

To find out more about the NHS DPP being delivered by Living Well Taking Control in south Sefton, Southport and Formby see

The theme for Diabetes Week this year is: Know Diabetes. Fight Diabetes. While a lot of people have a good understanding of diabetes and how to manage it, many others aren’t getting the right help and support to look after their diabetes.

For more information on how to get involved please visit:

Change of dates for CCG health meetings

Health commissioners in have released revised dates for their bi-monthly governing body meetings, which residents are welcome to attend to hear more about their local NHS.

It means that the governing body meeting for NHS South Sefton CCG will now take place in early May, a month earlier than previously advertised.

Chief officer, Fiona Taylor, explained: “Governing bodies are the CCGs most important business meetings where members of the group discuss and make decisions about local health services.

“We’ve moved our meetings to earlier in the month so information presented to the governing bodies is more timely, and we have changed the month when they are held so they fall outside the main summer holiday period to give as many people as possible the chance to come along and listen in to our discussions.”

CCGs are responsible for planning and buying, or ‘commissioning’ the majority of local health services and governing bodies are accountable for their work. The NHS organisations welcome anyone with an interest in their work to come along and listen to the discussions of the doctors, nurses, health professionals and lay representatives who make up the governing bodies.

All governing body meetings start at 1pm and time is set aside before they formally begin for people to ask any questions they might have.

The next governing body meeting take place on Thursday 4 May, 3rd floor, Merton House, Stanley Rd, Bootle

Anyone who would like to come along is asked to call 0151 247 7000 to confirm their attendance.

A full schedule of the new governing body meeting dates can be found on our website