NHS Blackburn with Darwen CCG

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The importance of keeping in touch with GPs

The importance of keeping in touch with GPs

One of the responsibilities I have is to keep in touch with the members of the CCG, that is the GPs. When at Fusion House it is easy to forget the importance of the work all our GP members carry out in their surgeries so Chris Clayton and I endeavour to visit practices and spend some time in conversation about the work we are doing and making the connection between the front line services and the commissioning for the wider population. In preparing for these visits I like to look at the website for the practice to familiarise myself with its particular characteristics.

We went to Audley at the start of the month and I was pleased to see on the website a lot of detail about the work done by the Patient participation Group in this practice. At Little Harwood I learned how their PPG had helped with the patient Survey and importantly helped draw up and implement the Action plan drawn up in response to the findings from the survey. We also went to the Cornerstones practice and again on their website they have a newsletter entitled Patient participation Group news. Interestingly when reading this I noticed that they accept certain unused medicine bandages etc. that have 15 months left or more on their expiry date. I often speak to people who complain about the waste in having to throw away medicines when a member of the family had died this is an alternative as the items are sent to a charity in Africa .

Thinking about our links to other cultures I attended the launch event of the Lancashire BME network at which we had speeches from the police and Crime Commissioner and Deputy Chief Constable but also dancing displays from Monserrat and India. Across Lancashire there are lots of groups working to assist and empower people from a wide variety of backgrounds and the network is designed to support these groups and coordinate their work so that they are effective in what they do. The network has a base in Springhill Community Centre in Accrington.

During half term week I went to two events on the same day. One was at Ewood Park and was an opportunity to learn about a wide range of services available to support those who have a disability. As this was aimed at both children and adults there was a good spread of organisations who had stands from which information was available but there was also the opportunity to talk in more depth about issues this helps people choose the service which can best meet their individual need but also gives the providers an opportunity to see what unmet needs there may be and influence the plans they have for their organisation. This was also an opportunity for people to meet others who may be in similar circumstances.

The other event on a smaller scale was at the Darwen Aldridge Academy and again was an opportunity for a range of providers of health and social care services to set out what they have available. Free NHS health checks were also on offer here. There was an opportunity to offer feedback at both events and I commented that both would have benefitted from more publicity as larger numbers of people could easily have been accommodated at both venues.

The Civic Service of Remembrance in the Cathedral was extremely well attended and many of the congregation joined the public procession to Corporation Park for a well observed period of silence at 11-00am. Like representatives of the Civic Authorities and Ex-Servicemen and Women and Military Organisations I was privileged to lay a wreath on behalf of the CCG in the Garden of Remembrance.’’ At the going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them ‘’