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ePanel Round-up: March 2019

Help shape the FUTURE of health and care  

The FUTURE of health and care events are underway across Sussex and East Surrey...but it is not too late to register to attend the events in the Coastal area.

Now that the NHS Long Term Plan has been published, it is the right time for us to talk with our communities about what the areas are that we need to focus on to ensure services remain sustainable and right for patients.

These discussions will build on what we have already heard through our “Big Health and Care Conversation” across the area, and help us think about how we use the available money for health and care in the best possible way: “We can do anything, but not everything”.

Our discussions will be focused  on the FUTURE of health and care:

Facing up to our challenges
Understanding need
Transforming services
Unwarranted variation – ensuring this does not happen
Resources and how we use them most effectively
Equality of access and care for our diverse population

We have a number of opportunities to join our discussions in person however there will be an online survey for anyone who is unable to attend.
  • Tuesday 19 March | 5 - 7pm | The Barn, Field Place, The Boulevard, Worthing, BN13 1NP 
  • Wednesday 20 March | 10am - 12noon | The Assembly Room, Chichester District Council, North Street, PO19 1LQ
  • Wednesday 27 March | 2pm - 4pm | The Grange Community Centre, Bepton Road, Midhurst, GU29 9HD
Places will be on a first come first served basis so book your place today

Need to see a GP or nurse? Think evenings and weekends

If you need to see a doctor or nurse, remember it doesn't have to be during the day Monday to Friday. Evening and weekend appointments are available - just contact your GP practice in the normal way to book. 

In October last year, the new improved access initiative began and since then more than 17,000 additional appointments have been booked for local people above and beyond what is normally available during the day.

Under the new initiative, urgent appointments are available up to 8pm during the week and appointments are available at clinics on a Saturday and Sunday. The appointments are for new illnesses or injuries when you need to see a health professional urgently. The appointments are available by contacting your normal GP practice and are available at local GP access hubs, which are being run from some local GP surgeries across the area. The service is run by Innovations in Primary Care (IPC), a not-for-profit company owned by local GP practices.

The access hubs also offer planned appointments such as family planning and cervical smear tests that can be hard to arrange whilst at work or when you are caring for family or a loved one.

One example of just how they can work is when Miss Wilson from West Sussex, needed to see a doctor but couldn’t get an appointment around her work commitments.

She said: “I hadn’t felt right for about a week. I was taking cold and flu medicine but nothing was helping.  I work in London and find getting a GP appointment a bit of a challenge – but  I was feeling so unwell on the train home that I phoned my GP surgery at 6pm, not holding out much hope.

“I was so pleased to be offered an appointment at 7.15pm that very evening at my local GP Access Hub – it was brilliant.  I was diagnosed with tonsillitis and was given a prescription for antibiotics; I started taking them that night.  I’m telling all my friends about the new later appointments.”

Using these appointments can help reduce pressure on other services such as Accident and Emergency departments. So remember to ask your GP practice when you do need medical help.

Help Us Help You.

Local GP practices to merge

The CCG has been informed by three GP practices in Littlehampton and Rustington of their plans to merge.

Fitzalan Medical Group is planning to join forces with Westcourt Medical Centre and The Park Surgery to form a new 40,000 patient practice.

This merger will give stability and strength through increased resilience offered by the increased size of the new practice, as well as allowing the practices to integrate more with other allied health services such as community nursing.  

The practices say it will also allow their teams to tap into new resources coming into general practice for new staff such as pharmacists and physiotherapists.

Dr Kimber from The Park Surgery has said that the merger would see “increased resilience in general practice locally, and even more seamless care, in a venture that will see the practices sharing their strengths, and learning from each other. The practices will combine forces to provide enhanced care in the community with a shared visiting team, and a strengthening of our ‘same-day-service’, operating from all (three) sites.”

We will continue to update as their plans progress and come to the CCG for consideration.  

REAL public meeting 

People living in Rustington, East Preston, Angmering and Littlehampton are invited to a Public Meeting on Saturday 23 March from 9.30am at the Windmill Theatre in Littlehampton.

The meeting has been organised by the local patient group and will be a chance for local people to meet health professionals; hear an update on the Littlehampton site development and learn about new projects. In additional there will be a question and answer session.

Please contact the patient group or call 07736 575651 if you would like more information.

Thank you  

A big thank you to everyone who attended the public event in Midhurst on Tuesday 26 February to discuss how health and care services will support people living in the local area.  The meeting was jointly organised between the CCG, Rural North Chichester Local Community Network, Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust and Healthwatch West Sussex.

It was a great example of local GPs showing their commitment and dedication to local care, how we can learn from examples around the country, and how we work with local people.

There will be further engagement sessions so look out for details of these in future ePanel newsletters.

Governing Body 

The next meeting of the CCGs Governing Body will be taking place on Tuesday 27 March. Meetings are held in the Goodwood Room at the CCG offices - 1 The Causeway, Goring by Sea, BN12 6BT. The meeting opens at 9.30am with questions from the public followed by the formal meeting from 9.45am.

Our Governing Body makes decisions about local health services and ensures that we have arrangements in place to carry out our work effectively, efficiently, economically and in accordance with principles of good governance.

The Governing Body meets six times a year in public and brings together our executives, locality directors and lay members. It oversees the discharge of our statutory duties and considers local health services that we commission, monitors the quality of those services, and makes decisions in relation to these areas of local health care.

If you would like to attend the meeting on Tuesday 27 March or would like to ask a question to our Governing Body please contact us.

Do you have time to spare to inspire others?

Beat, the UK’s eating disorder charity, are looking to recruit volunteer Ambassadors in the Sussex area. If you have recovered from an eating disorder or have helped someone through their recovery then you could help to raise awareness and fight stigma.

Beat Ambassadors share their experience of eating disorder recovery to inspire others and help more people get the support and understanding that they need. 

As a Beat Ambassador, you'll have the chance to take part in a range of exciting and rewarding activities such as attending events, influencing change in policy and sharing your story. Training sessions are available to support your role as an Ambassador.

For more information please contact Beat directly.

Read the latest news from our partner organisations... 

Coastal bites

  • West Sussex County Council are holding a Health and Wellbeing marketplace event on 14 March. The event is open to all and is a chance to find out about both statutory and voluntary services for adults and older people in the county. There will be around 65 stalls at the event which takes place from 10.30am – 1.00pm in the Park Suite and Main Conference Hall, Parkside, Horsham, RH12 1XH. For further information please email
  • Find out what is happening in your community at a Healthwatch West Sussex event on Thursday 21 March. There will be a number of local community groups showcasing what they do at the event which takes place at The Bridge Leisure Centre, Broadbridge Heath, Horsham, RH12 3YS. Come along between 10am and 2pm to learn more. 
  • The CCGs Primary Care Commissioning Committee meets on Tuesday 4 March from 2 - 4pm here at The Causeway. Items on the agenda include: a decision on The Lawns Surgery closure; a new minor surgery procedure service and review the policy to support practices affected by closure or merger. If you would like to attend, please register your interest at
We want to make sure these bulletins cover the information you want to hear about.
Please tell us what you think and if you have any ideas of what you would like to see in future issues.
For all other news stories please go to the news page on our website.

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