Lee's Latest:

Here you will find the latest updates from Lee our Network Social Prescriber.

1/6/20

As of today, Monday 1st June 2020, the Government has changed the rules for members of the public who have been shielding.  People shielding are those in the extremely vulnerable group which was detailed in my previous post below.  

 

    • The advice for people identified as clinically extremely vulnerable is that they should continue to shield until at least the 30 June but from 1 June, they can spend a short period of time outdoors each day with members of their household, still maintaining 2 metre distance from others.
    • If the shielded person lives alone, the Government is advising they can meet one other person from a different household, maintaining strict social distancing. The advice is that this be the same person each time.
    • Important aspects of Government’s policy and guidance remain the same. Apart from going outside once per day, a shielded person should continue to avoid all non-essential face to face contact. This means they should still not go shopping or to pharmacies.
    • The support for shielded people remains in place and unchanged.


    For those who are in the vulnerable group or are in neither of these groups you should follow the Government's advice as detailed here


    The Government has also confirmed that it will be reviewing shielding guidance alongside wider changes to social distancing, including plans to write to those on the shielding patients list with information about next steps on shielding after the next review on 15 June 2020. 

    6/4/20

    As the social prescriber for your Primary Care Network I am here to offer guidance and advice to those who require it. During this difficult time I can signpost to those in the community who are doing an excellent job providing services to ensure that essential items are delivered to those who need it.


    The government has defined two different groups of vulnerable people.  These are Vulnerable (of which there are many) or Extremely Vulnerable.  Those in the Extremely vulnerable group should have received a letter from the government or will hopefully in the next week or so.

    Vulnerable

    • Aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
    • Under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (i.e. anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds):
    • Chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
    • Chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
    • Chronic kidney disease
    • Chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
    • Chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
    • Diabetes
    • Problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease
    • A weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
    • Being seriously overweight (a BMI of 40 or above)
    • Those who are pregnant


    People in this group are strongly advised to undertake social distancing and to work from home where possible. More details here.

    Extremely Vulnerable

    • Solid organ transplant recipients.
    • People with specific cancers:
      • people with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy
      • people with lung cancer who are undergoing radical radiotherapy
      • people with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
      • people having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer
      • people having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors
      • people who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs
    • People with severe respiratory conditions including all cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and severe COPD.
    • People with rare diseases and inborn errors of metabolism that significantly increase the risk of infections (such as SCID, homozygous sickle cell).

    • People on immunosuppression therapies sufficient to significantly increase risk of infection.

    • Anyone lacking a Spleen
    • Women who are pregnant with significant heart disease, congenital or acquired.


    People in this group are strongly advised to stay at home at all times for a period of at least 12 weeks. Avoid going out for food and medicine. Ask a friend, neighbour or family member to bring your supplies where possible.

    More details here.


    If you feel you are in this group but have not been contacted you can register via this website for yourself or someone else: www.gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable


    Employment issues:

    If you are in the Extremely Vulnerable group and have received a letter, it can be used as evidence for your employer that you cannot work outside the home.  If you are needing to self isolate due to COVID-19 and need a sick note you can access this through 111 online.


    Support with Medicine Supplies:

    Medication that you are currently receiving by delivery – by a chosen person or a pharmacy, (if you are currently using this system, please continue to do so).
    Alternatively, if you do require regular medication I can offer some assistance and advice on how to access a home delivery system.

    I can ask you to be placed on the electronic repeat dispensing system which will enable your prescription to be sent electronically to a pharmacy of your choice.


    Support with Daily Living:
    I encourage patients to discuss their daily needs with their carers, friends, families and local voluntary groups (please contact me to find out more about these groups). This includes support for physical needs such as food and shopping deliveries, as well as any mental health needs.


    I can help you to find additional support through local voluntary groups. However if this is not possible due to not having family or friends there is a dedicated portal for these and very high risk patients that I can assist you with.

    There are some excellent resources and help that have been set up on social media, if you do not have access to any social media, perhaps you know someone who might?



    Ask them to make contact on your behalf, shopping and medication drops are being offered by some very kind people at this time. Please ensure that you try to access it.


    There is a page on this website that I am adding to all the time where you will find links to useful websites for everybody undergoing social isolation


    Hampshire County Council

    Hampshire County Council has joined forces with district and borough council partners, alongside the county’s community and voluntary sector, to ensure vulnerable people are able to access the support they need during the coming weeks.

    How can I get help?

    A new helpline is now available to provide information and advice, as well as practical support to frail or vulnerable Hampshire residents.

    The Coronavirus Hampshire Helpline – Hantshelp4vulnerable - can be contacted on 0333 370 4000. (Calls charged at local rate.)

    The helpline is available seven days a week, from 9am to 5pm, and is for vulnerable people who do not have support from families, friends or their local community, and who need urgent assistance with practical issues.

    Please note the service is for people currently residing in the county of Hampshire. If you are a resident of Southampton, Portsmouth or the Isle of Wight, and call the number above, you will be signposted to their respective local support numbers.


    What sort of help can I get?

    The Hampshire helpline is for frail or vulnerable people who need urgent assistance with essential food or household supplies, collection of medication, or who are at risk of loneliness. Please discuss your requirements with their friendly advisors who will ensure you get the help you need.


    If you need urgent food supplies, you can expect to receive a food box, typically containing:

    • Pasta
    • Cereal
    • Soup
    • UHT milk
    • Long life orange juice
    • Bread
    • Apples
    • Biscuits
    • Plus urgent household necessities if needed eg shower gel

    Wherever possible, special dietary requirements will be met.


    Keeping safe

    It is vital that if you are giving, or receiving help, you take precautions to ensure your safety and those of others.

    We urge all volunteers to adhere to Government’s guidance on how to volunteer safely.

    Your local Council for Voluntary Service will also be able to provide information and support.


    If you are receiving help, you should follow the Government’s social distancing and hygiene guidance. Do not let anyone into your home, unless you have confirmation that they are a registered professional or representative of a recognised Voluntary / Community sector organisation. Be cautious and curious and ask volunteers for proof of ID.

    You can keep up to date with the latest Government guidance via www.gov.uk/coronavirus
    If you’re worried you have Coronavirus, follow the NHS advice - www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/


    Milford on Sea Mutual Aid has now been set up. This has information for all our residents in Milford on Sea, Keyhaven, Lymore, Everton and Downton. The website will make it easier for everyone to find out what support there is, whether they live in these villages or want to know how their relatives living there can get support. There is information on all the local shops and restaurants and caterers who are making deliveries.


    Face Book pages that offer excellent support and help:


    I am here to help! Please contact me via your surgery


      Lee Rand
      Social Prescriber
      New Forest Primary Care Network

      New Forest PCN

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      Main photograph by Matt Roseveare