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Hertfordshire and West Essex ICB Update

Friday 18 November 2022


Opportunities to get involved
Events in the community
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Local health and care organisations fly the flag for shared service 

A ground-breaking virtual hospital that has been developed by local health and care services working together to look after people with lung disease and heart failure in their own home was a finalist in the Health Service Journal awards last night (17 November).

The South and West Hertfordshire Health and Care Partnership (HCP) was nominated in the Place-Based Partnership category but missed out on the top award. 

By working together, the partnership has created a service that supports patients to be discharged quickly from hospital and continue their recovery at home. 

Thanks to home monitoring equipment and with the direct support of staff from West Herts Teaching Hospitals and Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trusts, patients can be safely looked after at home in the same way as they would be in a hospital ward.

Judges in the awards recognised the ambition, outcome, value, involvement, and combined effort that has been demonstrated through the HCP’s development of the virtual hospital, as well as its potential to be replicated elsewhere.

Dr Katy Healy, Director of Transformation for the HCP, said: "Although we’d have loved to have brought home the award, the real prize for us is in the relationships we have formed as a partnership and lessons we have learnt together in the planning, roll-out and delivery of the virtual hospital.

"They will shape not only the evolution of the virtual hospital but everything else we do as a partnership for the health and wellbeing of our communities in south and west Hertfordshire." 

The full story will be available on the ICB website.

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A young woman stands outside a shop with a pharmacy sign above. She is wearing a blue coat, has long brown hair and is holding a handkerchief to her nose and over her mouth like she is blowing her nose
Tell us about your experience using pharmacies

Do you use your local pharmacy in Hertfordshire or west Essex and do you know everything it has to offer?

Pharmacies have a wealth of experience and expertise to help with more than just filling your prescriptions.

The Healthwatch teams in Essex and Hertfordshire want to hear personal experiences of those who use pharmacies and have put together a short survey.

Responses are completely anonymous unless you indicate you would like to talk to one of the team in more depth about your experiences. Details would only be used, in this case, in order to make contact.

Taking part will help inform and support the future work of pharmacies.
If you have experience of west Essex pharmacies, take the survey for that area. And if you live in Hertfordshire you can take part in this survey.
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A pale blue mug with stipes around and visible steam coming off the drink insde, balanced on a pair of ice blue coloured mittens with snow falling around
        Where to stay safe and warm this winter

With the cost of keeping our houses warm being a constant concern and the weather turning chillier, there are places you can go to keep warm and safe.

Both Hertfordshire and Essex County Councils have launched schemes to help you know where you can go this winter.

Working in partnership with the Hertfordshire's ten district and borough councils, Hertfordshire County Council's warm space directory has been created so communities have warm spaces including in libraries, family centres and community spaces. 

There will also be extra activities to help people meet others, such as a slipper swap for older people and stay and play events for young families. 

The council is also making £100,000 worth of funding available to community groups, through its Warm Herts grants

Information about where the warm spaces are on the HCC website

Essex County Council launched a similar scheme earlier this month. 

Its Warm Welcomes initiative means everyone has a safe and warm place to go this winter with additional support including clubs and activities on offer. If you live in Essex, find out what your local library is doing.

It also has a Warm Spaces Fund where organisations can apply for money to set up community projects to help people keep safe and warm this winter. 

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Independent review of impact of armed forces ban

Twenty years after the law was changed, the Government is holding an independent review to find out how LGBT veterans were impacted.

Until 2000 it was illegal to be gay in the British military - affecting around 5,000 people in the armed forces.

Campaigners are seeking compensation for lost livelihoods and suffering.

If this has affected you, there is still time to tell your story as part of the review.

You can also give your opinions on how veterans impacted by the ban can be better supported (giving them thier pensions back would be a good start!).

Take part in the review by completing a questionnaire.

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Can you open your home to a Ukrainian refugee?

Are you able to offer space in your home to take in a Ukrainian family or individual?

Hertfordshire County Council is urgently looking for new sponsors.

If you are able to help, you can find out more on the HCC website or register for its information webinar on Wednesday 23 November between 7pm and 8pm.

There is no obligation if you attend this webinar, it is simply to offer more information.

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Opportunities to get involved
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What support are you getting as an unpaid carer

If you’re an unpaid carer living in Hertfordshire, you can take part in a new Healthwatch survey and share your experiences on the support available through your GP practice.
We know some people are not registered as a carer with their GP practice, and also know even for those who are, the level of support received can still vary.
By taking part in this survey you will help better support GP practices identify unpaid carers and provide the support you are entitled to and deserve.
If you are an unpaid carer living in Hertfordshire and over the age of 18, please complete the survey which will take 5-10 minutes. It doesn’t matter whether your caring responsibilities are registered with your practice.
Do also please help share the survey, which closes on 4 January 2023, with others.
For more information, visit the Healthwatch Hertfordshire website, email the team or call them on 01707 275978.

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Get involved in Patient Participation Week 

You can still get involved in a week of activities being hosted by the Patients Association to encourage you to have your say and get involved.

Its Patient Participation Week, between Monday 28 November and Friday 2 December will bring patients, carers and healthcare professionals together to talk about patient partnership in a series of webinars.

All the events are online, free to attend and there will be the opportunity to ask questions.

This includes Partnering with Patients and Communities - what's happening in Integrated Care Systems? from 12.30pm to 2pm on Wednesday 30 November.

You can register for the sessions, including the November 30 webinar.

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Events in the community
Start a conversation during Just Talk Week

Just Talk Week 2022 gets underway in Hertfordshire on Monday (21 November).

You can find out more about looking after your mental health during the week-long event, running until Sunday 27 November, which has the theme of "Look Beneath the Surface".

Follow @JustTalkHerts on social media to find out more about looking after your mental health and visit the Just Talk Herts website to find out about all the activities, including online workshops, happening throughout the week.

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Epping Forest District Council launches health and wellbeing strategy

How Epping District Council will look after its residents' health and wellbeing over the next four years has been published.

You can go directly to the plans or find out more on the council's website about how it put the strategy together.

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