Category: Health

Practice good hand hygiene to help protect against flu

This winter Bedfordshire and Luton Clinical Commissioning Groups are highlighting the importance of good hand hygiene for protection against the flu.

The flu is a virus and can be a debilitating illness for most, for vulnerable groups such as older people, pregnant women and people with long-term health conditions it can result in severe complications. Health experts say the most effective way to protect yourself and your family from getting the flu is to have the seasonal flu vaccine. Aside from the flu vaccine, the best way to protect yourself, and those around you, from the flu is to practice good hand hygiene. This includes catching coughs and sneezes in tissues, throwing used tissues away and washing your hands frequently throughout the day.

If you feel the need to cough or sneeze, it’s important to practice the following steps; catch it, bin it, kill it.

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Bedford Hospital NHS Trust to receive cancer screening funding

The 78 trusts that will benefit from funding for new cancer testing and detection technology have been announced.
The new machines will improve screening and early diagnosis of cancer, and are part of the government’s commitment to ensure 55,000 more people survive cancer each year.

Last month the Prime Minister announced the extra £200 million in funding for new cancer screening equipment. 78 trusts will receive funding over the next 2 years to replace, refurbish and upgrade:

CT and MRI scanners – bringing in alternatives with lower radiation levels
Breast screening imaging and assessment equipment

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Use NHS 111 if you need urgent medical assistance

Bedfordshire and Luton Clinical Commissioning Groups are asking people to call NHS 111 when they need urgent medical assistance, but they don’t think it’s an emergency.

NHS 111 is the best service when you need medical assistance fast. It is free to call, with trained professionals available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If you have an injury or illness which isn’t an emergency, using NHS 111 could make it easier for you to access local health services, and receive advice from specialist clinicians. The service also allows pressure to be taken off local A&E departments and the ambulance service so they are able to focus on emergency cases.

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Time to get your flu jab

The Clinical Commissioning Groups in Bedford, Luton and Milton Keynes are urging local people to have the flu jab. This year the flu vaccine will be even more widely available.

So everyone is being encouraged to take the vaccination to prevent becoming unwell.

Last year, GPs were still seeing far too many patients suffering from flu symptoms. People can protect themselves and their families simply by having the flu jab. This is now being offered at flu clinics, local pharmacies, schools and at some places of work.

The flu jab is safe, effective and for many it’s free of charge.

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New platform launched to support mental health

Public Health England (PHE), in partnership with the NHS, has launched Every Mind Matters to help people take simple steps to look after their mental health, improve their mental wellbeing and support others.

It is increasingly recognised that taking care of our mental health is as important as maintaining good physical health.

A new PHE survey revealed that more than eight in ten people have experienced early signs of poor mental health in the last 12 months. This included feeling anxious, stressed, having low mood or having trouble sleeping

These can be a natural response to life’s challenges, but they can become more serious if people don’t take action.

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Last chance for Healthy Heart projects to get up to Heart Research UK £10,000 funding

Community groups in Anglia have just two weeks left to apply for a regional grant of up to £10,000 to help local people look after their hearts.

National charity Heart Research UK is urging groups to submit applications for the Heart Research UK and Subway® Healthy Heart Grant before the deadline.

The Grant is available for new and innovative projects that promote healthy hearts and reduce the risk of heart disease in the community.

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New mobile heart monitors to be used to help prevent strokes

Commissioned by Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group, AliveCor heart monitors can take quick ECG (Electrocardiogram) readings that measure the electrical activity of the heart. The monitor can identify a number of heart rate abnormalities including atrial fibrillation, which is an irregular heart rhythm associated with people at greater risk from suffering a stroke. In the BCCG region over 7,600 people have atrial fibrillation, with another 3,600 people estimated to be living with the condition undiagnosed.

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Bedfordshire CCG supports World Sepsis Day

Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (BCCG) is supporting World Sepsis Day (13 September 2019) by increasing public awareness of a disease that in the UK kills 52,000 people every year.

Sepsis, also known as blood poisoning, is caused when the immune system overreacts to an infection and starts to damage the body’s own tissues and organs. This can result in life-changing disabilities or even death.

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Boys to be offered HPV vaccine for the first time

A free Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine will be offered to boys for the first time to help prevent the spread of HPV and stop certain types of cancers forming.

HPV is linked to 5% of all cancers worldwide causing the majority of genital cancers as well as some cancers in the neck and head. HPV is very common and can be caught easily through any kind of sexual contact with another person who already has it.

It is estimated that by vaccinating boys in year eight at school, as well as girls, it will prevent around 64,000 cervical cancers and around 50,000 non-cervical cancers affecting men and women by 2058.

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