Get your flu and Covid jabs booked and be winter ready

[ Message from Debs Harkins, Director of Public Health and Jackie Addison, Head of HR&OD – abbreviated ]

COVID-19 Autumn 2022 Boosters overview

With flu season nearly upon us and COVID-19 continuing to circulate, we are encouraging you to protect yourself and others from serious illness at this critical time.As well as the infection prevention measures we have been using during the pandemic, you can boost your immunity by:

  • having a flu jab – Check your eligibility for a free jab
  • having the COVID-19 booster vaccine, if you are eligible

The COVID-19 booster and the flu vaccine can be given on the same day.  We advise that you get each vaccine as soon as you can, rather than wait to get both.

Additionally, those working in care homes could be offered the opportunity to receive a COVID-19 or flu vaccine when roving teams visit care homes, however this may not always be possible.

Free flu vaccinationWhile it’s important to get the flu jab every year, it’s particularly important this year.There has been more flu circulating this year in the Southern Hemisphere than in recent years and the flu season started earlier than usual, so we can anticipate a similar situation in the UK. As well as this, the measures we have taken to avoid catching COVID-19 have meant that for the last couple of years we were also less likely to catch flu, so there may be less natural immunity in the community this year.You are more likely to get seriously ill and end up needing hospital care if you have COVID-19 and flu at the same time. The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) found that people who have COVID-19 and flu at the same time were almost six times more likely to die compared to people with neither.  So please keep doing everything you can to avoid infection.If you are already eligible for a free flu jab on the NHS you should get it through that route. You will have probably already received an invite.  If you’re not sure, one of the participating pharmacies can check when you go along and can still give you a jab even if you’re eligible for a free one on the NHS. If you have any questions about the scheme, or are not sure if you are eligible or not, please email joanne.ngan@calderdale.gov.uk.

As well as all Calderdale Council staff, the free flu vaccine is available through this scheme for employees of some of our partner organisations, where they are not eligible to get it on the NHS.  Specifically employees who work in:

  • Calderdale care settings, including domiciliary care
  • Early years settings and early years providers
  • Primary, secondary, specialist and post-16 education providers

Get your COVID-19 booster vaccination

The NHS is offering Autumn boosters to people at greatest risk from COVID-19 to help increase their immunity from the virus during the winter months. COVID-19 is still with us and people can still become very ill or die from the virus. Having your booster will ensure you continue to have the best protection against the virus through the winter months. The NHS will invite eligible people to make an appointment when it is their turn so please wait to be contacted.  This invite will provide all the information on how to book an appointment.  Frontline Health and Social Care Workers do not need to wait to be invited and can self-declare their status and book an appointment here or ring 119. You can have your seasonal booster (Autumn booster) if it’s been at least 3 months since you had your previous dose.  If you have not had a 1st or 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine yet, you should have them as soon as possible.For more information on eligibility and to book your Covid booster vaccine, visit the NHS website.

More information about the Flu Vaccine and Covid Autumn Booster on Gov.uk

Join the Healthy Minds Volunteer Team!

Charities in the voluntary sector are facing more and more challenging times, and we need our incredible volunteers now more than ever.We have THREE different volunteering opportunities at Healthy Minds, one of them could be right up your street!💭 Befriending Volunteer for our Like Minds Peer Support Project, supporting a peer to improve their mental health.💭 Walk Leaders for our Walks for Wellbeing programme💭 Volunteers for our Time Out project for children and young people, helping to deliver mental health education workshops in schools.Interested? Please pop Cath an email or call/text:cath@healthymindscalderdale.co.uk07960 972685

Become a Volunteer for Healthy Minds!

     

West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership publishes new five-year strategy for suicide prevention

West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership has published a Suicide Prevention Strategy and Action Plan for 2022-2027.

The Strategy aims to make suicide prevention everyone’s business and is based on a long-term vision for zero suicides in West Yorkshire.

Key takeaways from the Strategy:

  • Every death is one death too many. A ‘zero suicide’ philosophy underpins the strategy.
  • West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership aims to achieve a minimum 10% reduction in the suicide rate across West Yorkshire over the next five years.
  • Grief and loss, money worries, alcohol, relationship breakdown and mental health problems are significant factors that may cause someone to take their own life.
  • More men than women die by suicide.

Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows that suicide is more common in West Yorkshire than in England as a whole.

In order to bring suicide rates down and reduce preventable death, the Strategy aims to make sure everyone plays a part. This includes citizens, voluntary and community sector organisations, the NHS, local authorities, employers, emergency services, and others.

 Nichola Sanderson, one of three Senior Responsible Officers for suicide prevention in West Yorkshire, and the Deputy Director of Nursing at Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust said:

“My experience as a mental health nurse has given me the privilege of working with people and their families at the most distressing and vulnerable times. I believe that with the right help and support, all death by suicide can become a thing of the past.”

 Kim Shutler, SRO and the Chief Executive Officer at The Cellar Trust in Shipley said:

“Suicide prevention in a post-pandemic climate will require us all to dig deep and pull together to do everything we can. We also need to work hard to raise the profile of this work. Suicide prevention is everyone’s business. It isn’t just in the domain of mental health services. I encourage everyone reading this to take a pause to think what their role could or should be.”

Hundreds of the most clinically vulnerable people across West Yorkshire receive new COVID treatment to reduce the chance of hospital admission

Across England, the NHS has set up new services that will assess patients at the highest-risk from COVID and, where appropriate, offer them treatment, either with a new antibody infusion or a course of antiviral tablets.

These treatments aim to reduce their chance of needing hospital care. Treatments involve intravenous infusion of a neutralising monoclonal antibodies (nMABs) or an oral antiviral treatments, which are given to high-risk patients, aged 12 and over. This includes people who have HIV/AIDS, liver disease, sickle cell disease, those receiving cancer treatments or taking medicines that suppress their immune system.

A West Yorkshire man, who is one of the longest surviving transplant patients in the country, has become one of the first to benefit from a new NHS service.

Paul Woodward, 52, has cystic fibrosis, diabetes and had a double lung transplant nearly 30 years ago, making him one of the longest surviving transplant patients in the country.

Having caught COVID for the second time at the end of December, and being at exceptionally high risk from complications, Paul was contacted by the NHS and offered a new antibody infusion, with the aim of preventing any further complications.

Paul said: ‘I feel very happy that it’s been possible to have the antibody infusion, as I have lost several friends to COVID. I know that anyone in my situation would jump at the opportunity to try and make sure that they don’t get poorly from COVID’.

Dr Steve Ollerton, Clinical Lead for West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership Primary and Community Care Programme said: ‘The vaccination programme remains the first line of defence against COVID-19, along with the everyday precautions we can all take to protect one another –  mask wearing, social distancing and regular testing. The new treatments have an important role to play for our patients who are at highest risk of becoming very ill with COVID due to their other health issues.’

Since mid-December, more than 1400 clinically vulnerable people across West Yorkshire (Bradford District and Craven; Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, and Wakefield) have been assessed for the new treatments with people receiving it at an outpatient unit or in their home (accurate 1 February).

People at the highest risk from COVID will receive a letter from NHS England advising them that, should they test positive for COVID, they will be contacted and assessed for suitability for one of the new treatments available.  If no contact is made, eligible patients can contact their GP or ring 111 to access the service.

Information about who is eligible and full details about the two types of treatments are available on the NHS.UK website.

Free Winter Care Packs available to support vulnerable individuals

A number of free winter care packs are available to Calderdale organisations supporting vulnerable individuals.

The packs include some essential items to support those most in need during the cold months.To register your interest, please email the required quantities to info@cvac.org.uk

Collection from VAC Resource Centre, Hall St Halifax HX1 5AY

Coronavirus Update December 2021: New restrictions and booster vaccines

The Prime Minister has announced new rules to help protect
ourselves and others from the new COVID-19 variant Omicron.

For further information visit Public Health England Coronavirus resources
Also: Gov.UK and NHS.uk

Key messages

From December 2nd the NHS will roll out the booster vaccine for those who have had their second dose over 3 months ago.

The aim is to have all adults vaccinated by the end of January 2022.

The NHS will contact you when it is your turn to book an appointment. You can keep an eye out for drop-in clinics where you don’t need to book an appointment.

     

     

The information above was correct at the time of publication.

For up to date, current information, visit

Public Health England Coronavirus resources, Gov.UK, NHS.uk

Hate Crime Champions Session November 11th

Disability Partnership Calderdale will be running a webinar to talk about hate crime and how it can be dealt with.

The Hate Crime Champions Training is for anyone who would like to learn more about what is a Hate Crime, how to report it, and what support is available to both witnesses and victims of Hate Incidents and Hate Crimes, with a view to encouraging more people to come forward and report incidents.

This event will take place online over Zoom.

Topic: Hate Crime Champions Session
Date and time: Thursday 11th November at 1.30pm

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88444161828Meeting ID: 884 4416 1828