We, along with the other clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Kent and Medway, have been reviewing the local NHS wheelchair service.

Hello, my name is Graham Roberts and I am the Patient and Public Representative on the Kent and Medway Stroke Review Programme Board.

Hazel Gallagher’s story proves how pioneering work by Medway CCG can improve local people’s health.

Following a robust review of the evidence provided by Kent and Medway NHS & Social Care Partnership Trust (KMPT), Medway CCG - the organisation that plans and pays for most local health services – has decided not to extend funding beyond the initial pilot phase (April 2014 – March 2015).

If you are a wheelchair user, or a parent or carer of someone who uses a wheelchair, we would appreciate your feedback.  Your comments and feedback will help us understand what people think is important when it comes to the provision, maintenance and repairs of wheelchairs.

Local GPs are currently inviting 17/18 year olds to take-up a new vaccine which offers them protection against meningitis (inflammation of the brain) and septicaemia (blood poisoning).

Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) across the country are being asked to consider a new way of working described as co-commissioning in relation to GP services.

Currently, clinical commissioning groups commission (plan, buy and monitor):

  • all hospital services (including ambulance, maternity and accident and emergency);
  • community hospitals and community-based care including nurses, health visitors and therapists;
  • prescriptions for medicines;
  • hospital and community based mental health services;
  • services for people with learning difficulties (in partnership with Medway Council);
  • and packages of care for people with continuing needs/nursing care.

But CCGs do not commission GP services – this is done by NHS England.

CCGs are now being asked about new proposals that will give CCGs more responsibilities to work with primary care in the planning, buying and monitoring GP services.

Three ways forward

NHS England has summarised three options for the level of local involvement in the future commissioning of GP services:

  • Greater involvement
  • Joint commissioning
  • Delegated commissioning

The NHS is looking for local people to share their experiences of and views on how to improve local stroke care and inpatient vascular services, at a series of events across Kent from 1-30 July.

Organisations in Medway are being urged to enhance their services for people with dementia.

The Mental Health Awareness week theme for 2015 is ‘Mindfulness’, chosen by the Mental Health Foundation.

The North Kent CCGs have taken the decision to halt the current procurement process for the Level 3 Dermatology Services.

We can all help to reduce unnecessary attendances at A&E by saving it for treating life threatening accidents and emergencies.

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From April 2015, the Care Act, which marks the most significant reform in social care for over 60 years, will introduce a number of reforms intended to make care and support more consistent across the country.

Watch our norovirus campaign video for more information about this easily spread infection.

Medway GP Dr Pete Green is urging people to think of their pharmacy first for help with common minor ailments such as colds and sniffles.

When you are feeling sick, who are you going to call? For most people, the first choice should be your GP. But often you won’t need a face-to-face appointment. Instead, GPs are more than happy to call you back to discuss symptoms over the phone.