Your CCG newsletter - Coronavirus update

Welcome to your newsletter from NHS South Sefton CCG. 

This edition will cover current coronavirus (Covid-19) advice and information.

This issue of your CCG newsletter will focus on coronavirus (Covid-19) and important information on local services.

If you haven't already done so, please ensure that you familiarise yourself with all of the official government guidance relevant to you and share relevant information with friends and family members. 

Stay home to help save lives 

Everyone must stay at home to help stop the spread of coronavirus. This includes people of all ages, even if you do not have any symptoms or other health conditions.

The only reasons to leave home are:
  • To shop for basic necessities or pick up medicine  
  • Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person  
  • To travel to work if you absolutely cannot work from home  
  • To exercise once a day on your own or with people in your household  
Anyone can spread the virus. Read the FAQs on what you can and can't do here. 

What to do if you have coronavirus symptoms

You should immediately self-isolate and stay at home if you have either or both of the following symptoms:

  • a high temperature (37.8C or over)
  • a new, continuous cough

Contact the NHS 111 coronavirus service if:

  • you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
  • your condition gets worse
  • your symptoms do not get better after 7 days

Please go to in the first instance. Only call 111 if you need help urgently and DO NOT go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.  

BSL users can use the NHS 111 video interpreter service

Changes to the way you access your local health services  

Your local healthcare services are still here for you during this current coronavirus pandemic. During this time some of us will continue to have non-coronavirus related illnesses or ongoing conditions that we need help for from time to time.

Many of the services that you would turn to first when you are unwell are working differently for the time being, so they can keep you and their staff as safe and well as possible. This could mean:
  • Changing opening times
  • Asking you to visit a different building
  • Having a telephone consultation to discuss your health needs
  • Temporarily postponing a regular appointment you have to help manage your health and wellbeing
We hope this will not inconvenience you too much and we appreciate your support through this challenging time.

Here are some of the important changes you should know about if you need health advice, information or treatment.
Easter bank holiday service times

Your GP practice

Unlike previous years local GP surgeries will be operating regular weekday opening hours on Good Friday and Easter Monday to help the NHS cope with the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

Due to the coronavirus outbreak practices have made some changes to the usual way that you access services at your practice. This means you should either phone your practice or visit the practice website to get advice rather than visiting your surgery in person.

Remember that there is a range of services you can access online, including ordering repeat prescriptions and accessing a wide range of medical advice and information. Visit your GP practices' website for online services, or download the NHS App on your smartphone, tablet or other device. 

Your local pharmacy 

Pharmacies will be open on both Good Friday (10 April) and Easter Monday (13 April) from 2-5pm and some will be open on Easter Sunday (12 April). You should contact your local chemist directly for its exact hours of business on all of these days.

Read more about accessing your local services over the Easter weekend here.

Ordering your prescriptions

Local pharmacies are experiencing unprecedented demand during the coronavirus pandemic. Please support your pharmacy at this time by following these steps:
  • Please allow at least seven days between ordering your prescription and collecting from a pharmacy 
  • Do not over order
  • Do not ring the pharmacy to see if your prescription is ready
  • If you go to a pharmacy to collect your prescription before it is ready, then they may ask you to call back later
  • If your prescription is urgent that day, please go to the pharmacy and they will complete as soon as possible. You may have to wait or call back
  • If you get a message from your surgery/NHS app to say your prescription has been processed, please give the pharmacy seven days to get it ready unless urgent or acute
  • The best way to order your repeat prescription is online through your GP practice or the NHS app 
Remember, if you can’t get out to pick up your medicines due to the current Government advice on coronavirus you can ask a trusted family member, friend or neighbour to collect your medicines once the prescription is ready for collection. If you have no one to help and are shielded or self-isolating then contact Sefton Council’s helpline for support - 0345 140 0845.
Litherland Walk-in Centre 

Litherland Walk-in Centre is open 8am-8pm every day. However, all patients are now being asked to call 0300 100 1004 where they will be given advice on the call and where necessary, an appointment will be allocated at the walk-in centre.

Find out more here.

Other centres:

The Urgent Treatment Centre in Ormskirk and the Walk-in Centre in Skelmersdale will be treating minor injuries only and have moved to booked appointments. Call 01695 402180 first.

In addition, local NHS Walk-in Centres across Liverpool will continue to operate daily between 8am–8pm, with the exception of the city centre one on Hanover Street. However, people need to call first on 0300 100 1004 to arrange an appointment.
Children's A&E department - Omrkisk Hospital 

The children's accident and emergency department at Ormskirk will close overnight from Monday 6 April 2020 between 10pm and 8am until futher notice.

Read more here.

Alder Hey COVID-19 information hub

To help keep children and families fully informed on COVID-19, Alder Hey has launched a new information hub with visiting information, FAQs and more.  

Need help and support?

If you need help for you or someone in your household with things like collecting shopping or your medicines, we recommend that you call Sefton Council on 0345 140 0845 or fill in their online form to ask for support

Looking after your mental health and wellbeing

You may find that staying at home can be boring or frustrating and that your find your mood and feelings are affected. You may feel low, worried or have problems sleeping.

There are simple things you can do to stay mentally and physically active during this time, such as:
• Try exercises you can do at home
• Spend time doing things you enjoy – this might include reading, cooking, other indoor hobbies or listening to/watching favourite radio or TV programmes
• Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink enough water, exercise regularly, and try to avoid smoking, alcohol and drugs
• Keep your windows open to let in fresh air, get some natural sunlight if you can, or get outside into the garden. You can also go for a walk outdoors if you stay more than 2 metres from others.

You can find more tips and information on taking care of your mind while at home here. 

Volunteer at Southport and Ormskirk Hospitals

There are a range of volunteer roles open at Southport and Ormskirk Hospitals to support patients and staff during the coronavirus pandemic.

There are positions available in the following non-patient facing roles:

  • Portering (general movement of items, e.g. post, samples, furniture moves, meals, snack boxes, etc)
  • Laundry (folding, sorting, ironing, packing, drying, cage cleaning, etc)
  • Domestics (clean corridors)
  • Catering (restaurant cleaning, kitchen cleaning, loading dishwasher, making up snack boxes)

FInd out more about the roles and applying on the trust website. You can also find out more about the opportunities by watching this video.

A message from the Healthwatch Sefton team

Following guidance from Healthwatch England, NHS England and Public Health England, Healthwatch Sefton has suspended meetings and face-to-face engagement until the end of April 2020. The team is now operating from home locations.
However, Healthwatch Sefton will continue to support Sefton residents by providing their signposting and information service during normal office hours of 9am – 5pm, Monday-Friday, as well as the Independent Complaints Advocacy service.

You can connect and keep in touch in a number of ways:
You can also still provide feedback on the health and social care services you use by sharing your experience via the Healthwatch Sefton feedback centre. All experiences remain anonymous.

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