NHS plans to beat the blues

GUIDANCE on how patients in Buxton can better manage their health has been issued by NHS Derbyshire to coincide with national Self Care Week.

By learning how to self care many people can enjoy a better quality of life and suffer less pain, anxiety, depression and illness.

Keith Mann, head of primary care contracts for NHS Derbyshire, said: “Learning to look after your health puts you in control of your life. It also improves the quality of your life and helps you live more healthily.”

Patients with long-term illnesses, such as asthma and diabetes, are most likely to benefit from self care as they spend an average of four hours a year with a health professional.

Making a checklist of key questions to ask before an appointment – such as ‘Who Do I contact if things get worse?’ and ‘How and when will I get test results?’– could play a significant role in reducing GP and hospital visits.

Vulnerable patients, including the elderly, pregnant women and those with a long-term illness, are being reminded that it’s not too late to make an appointment with their doctor to have the winter flu jab.

Pharmacies are also on hand to provide expert advice on everyday illnesses, such as coughs and colds, and to answer questions about prescribed and over-the-counter medicines – all without the need for an appointment.

Copies of NHS Derbyshire’s ‘Information Prescriptions’ guides, which provide free advice and contacts are available at www.derbyshirecounty.nhs.uk/long-term-conditions or by contacting the Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 0800 783 7279.

Topics covered include heart disease, arthritis, stroke and cancer.

l Self Care Week runs from Tuesday, November 15 to Monday, November 21.