A supplier to the NHS has advised us of a global shortage of some equipment used for taking blood tests.
Anyone who needs a test for urgent health problems, will still get one but where your clinician recommends that it’s safe to do so, then you may be asked to come back for a test at a later date, or your appointment may be rescheduled.
Given the nature of the shortage, we cannot give an exact date for when the test will be rescheduled, but please be assured that if your condition or symptoms require it, then you will get a test, and we will be re-booking your test when supplies become more easily available.
If your condition or symptoms change or get worse, please contact the NHS as you would normally.
World Breastfeeding Week (1st – 7th August) aims to highlight the benefits that breastfeeding can have.
Breastfeeding is a skill that takes time to get the hang of. Lots of mums wonder if their baby’s feeding well and getting enough – especially in the first few days. But once you’ve mastered it, you’ll probably find it’s the easiest and most satisfying way to feed your baby.
You can visit the NHS Start 4 Life website which hosts lots of information about breastfeeding from how to breastfeed, expressing and what happens when you go back to work.
You can also call The National Breastfeeding Helpline which is open every day from 9.30am – 9.30pm for confidential breastfeeding information and support – 0300 1000212.
From now until September is when the pollen count is at its highest, especially when its warm, humid and windy.
Some of the symptoms of hay fever can include:
If you are having any of the above symptoms or are feeling the effects of hay fever, visit your local pharmacist as they can provide advice and treatments to suit your symptoms. You could also try:
You can keep an eye on the pollen forecast on the Met Office Website.
This Cervical Cancer Prevention week don’t let embarrassment stop you from getting your cervical smear test!
Cervical screening prevents 75% of cervical cancers from developing, yet one in four of those invited for a screening in the UK, don’t attend.
Cervical Screening is the method of detecting abnormal cells on the cervix. Being screened regularly means any abnormal changes in the cells can be identified and, if necessary treated to stop cancer developing.
All women and people with a cervix in the UK aged 25 to 49 are invited for a screening test every three years and those aged 50 to 64 are invited every five years.
What happens when you go for your cervical screening?
The screening test usually takes around 5 minutes to carry out.
You’ll be asked to undress from the waist down and lie on a couch, although you can remain fully dressed if you are wearing a loose skirt/dress.
The nurse or doctor will gently put an instrument called a speculum into your vagina, this holds the walls of the vagina open so the cervix can be seen.
The nurse or doctor will then use a small soft brush to gently collect some cells from the surface of your cervix. Although the procedure can be a little uncomfortable, it shouldn’t be painful. However, if you do find it painful let the doctor or nurse know as they may be able to reduce your discomfort.
Once the sample is taken, the doctor or nurse will close the curtain allowing you to dress whilst they prepare the sample to be sent off to the laboratory.
The cell sample is then sent off to a laboratory for analysis and you should receive the result within 2 weeks.
Many are nervous and embarrassed about the process of cervical screening, but there is no need to be, nurses and doctors carry out these tests every day. You are also welcome to bring a chaperone to your appointment if this would make you more comfortable.
This week is Diabetes Awareness Week.
Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person’s blood sugar level to become too high.
There are 2 main types of diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is far more common than type 2. In the UK, around 90% of all adults with diabetes have type 2.
Its very important for diabetes to be diagnosed as early as possible because it will get progressively worse if left untreated.
When to see a doctor
Speak to your GP if you experience the main symptoms of diabetes which includes:
You can find diabetes advice and support at:
Find information about opting out of sharing your data with the NHS and what you need to know:
This year, people across the country are continuing to face new challenges as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. Many people are taking on more caring responsibilities for their relatives and friends who are disabled, ill or older and who need support.
There are 6.5 million people in the UK who are carers, looking after a family member or friend who has a disability, mental or physical illness or who needs extra help as they grow older.
Caring’s impact on all aspects of life from relationships and health to finances and work should not be underestimated, and carers are facing even more difficult circumstances this year. Whilst many feel that caring is one of the most important things they do, its challenges should not be underestimated. Caring without the right information and support can be tough.
You can find information on carer’s assessments, local council support, respite care and help for young carers at nhs.uk.
This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and this year the Mental Health Foundation has chosen the theme of ‘nature’.
Evidence shows that access to nature is crucial for our mental health and millions of people a have re-discovered that during lockdowns over the past year. This week is about taking the opportunity to open our eyes to the power of nature and how it can help our mental health.
You can find more information about Mental Health and the support available to you at the following sites:
Dementia Action Week is a national event that sees the UK public taking action to improve the lives of people affected by Dementia.
The word ‘dementia’ describes a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem solving or language.
Different types of dementia can affect people differently, and everyone will experience symptoms in their own way.
However, there are some common early symptoms that may appear some time before a diagnosis of dementia. These include:
These symptoms are often mild and may get worse only very gradually.
Dementia is not a natural part of ageing. This is why it’s important to talk to a GP sooner rather than later if you’re worried about memory problems or other symptoms.
You can find more information at:
Please visit the gov.uk website for information on how to demonstrate your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination status to show that you’ve had the full course of the COVID-19 vaccine and access this status when travelling abroad.
Please DO NOT contact your GP surgery about your COVID-19 vaccination status. GPs cannot provide letters showing your COVID-19 vaccination status. Thank you.