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Health & Wellbeing

New flu vaccine to help over 65s and ease pressure on local NHS

Last year saw 19 over 65 year olds ending up in hospital in the Crawley, Horsham and Mid Sussex area due to flu.

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Residents aged 65 and over are being urged by the local NHS to have their new and improved flu vaccine this year, and help reduce the impact of the virus on the local health care system significantly.

Winter is set to be extremely difficult for the NHS across the country, especially on A&E departments and local GP surgeries as they cope with the annual rise in numbers of people seeking treatment.

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Last year saw 19 over 65 year olds ending up in hospital in the Crawley, Horsham and Mid Sussex area due to flu. Those requiring hospital care caused an avoidable extra strain on the NHS, with people aged 65 costing the NHS just over £96,500 due to the flu last year.

Local doctors believe this could have been avoided had those eligible taken up the opportunity to get their free jab. Just over two thirds over 65 year olds in the West Sussex had the free flu jab last year, which means thousands went unprotected and were at risk of complications if they caught the virus. This year they will get the new and improved aTIV flu jab, which improves the body’s immune response to the vaccine.

Allison Cannon, Chief Nurse and Director of Quality for East Surrey and Sussex Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: 

“The coming winter could really tough for the NHS and local staff are doing everything they can to prepare for the extra pressures we expect, now we are calling on the public to play their part and get the free flu jab if they are eligible.

“The new vaccine for over 65 year olds could reduce GP flu consultations and hospitalisations, freeing up busy NHS staff to provide care for those in most need, so we are calling on those eligible to claim their free flu jab so they don’t add unnecessary pressures to local health and care services.”

Local GPs are receiving their flu vaccine stock for over the coming months in phases, those aged over 65 years old should contact their GP practice to claim their free flu jab.

Find out more about the flu vaccine at www.nhs.uk

Health & Wellbeing

Don’t miss out on the Lymphoedema Awareness Workshop at Crawley Hospital

The workshop is being held in March.

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As part of Lymphoedema Awareness Week 2019, which is 3rd – 9th March, the Olive Tree Cancer Support Centre is holding a Lymphoedema Information and Education Workshop on Wednesday 6th March 2-4 p.m at
The Olive Tree Cancer Support Centre, Wentworth House, Crawley Hospital, West Green Drive, Crawley RH11 7DH.

This workshop will be led by Yvette Jordan, UK Lymphology Clinics Training Director and she will be supported by Olive Tree volunteer therapists Anna Parsons and Juliette Cross.

Affecting 1 in 5 patients, lymphoedema is a distressing condition and a known side effect of cancer treatment. It is caused because the flow of fluid within the lymphatic system has been disrupted because of surgery and having lymph nodes removed. 

This makes it harder for the lymph fluid to drain away which means that this excess fluid can then build up between the tissues and cause swelling of the arm, leg or surrounding area. 

Lymphoedema can develop weeks, months or even years after cancer treatment but early diagnosis by healthcare professionals and treatment by specialist lymphoedema therapists can help to reduce the severity of the condition.

Attendance will be of great value to anyone affected by cancer, including patients and healthcare professionals and will provide everything they need to know about lymphoedema. 

Topics covered will include:

• What is Lymphoedema?

• How does Lymphoedema happen?

• Who is most at risk?

• Recognising clinical signs of early Lymphoedema

• Best methods and early applications for a preventative approach

• Questions and answers

Yvette Jordan, who will be leading the workshop said:

“Much more awareness is needed with early intervention which is essential to help patients manage this disabling disease”.

To book your place on this informative workshop for 2-4 p.m. please call 01293 534465

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