Worcester News Article – 19th November

On Friday 9 November Healthwatch held its Board meeting at Bromsgrove Methodist Church. As usual our Board had a lot of issues to consider, all of which relate to the health and care of patients and the public in Worcestershire. At our previous Board meeting in October we heard from a member of the public about a piece of equipment called ‘Libre’ which allows those with diabetes to monitor the glucose levels in their blood using a smart phone app as opposed to the traditional method which involves pricking finger a test a drop of their blood. To the lay person the advantages appear obvious and we were concerned to hear that whilst this equipment was widely available on the NHS to certain groups of patients with Type 1 diabetes it was not available in Worcestershire. Thanks to the Worcester news reporting we have heard from a number of patients who either would benefit from it use or who purchase it privately, and last week NHE England announced that it would end the post code lottery and make ‘Libre’ available on the NHS to ‘qualifying’ patients with Type 1 diabetes. Healthwatch will be asking the NHS for more information as to what this means for patients locally at Worcestershire’s NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups Public Board meeting later in the week.

The Clinical Commissioning Groups are re-designing the Muscular Skeletal Services in the county. Jo Ringshall, our Vice Chair, has been attending the various meetings and reported to the Board on their progress. The scope of the project includes physiotherapy, pain management, diagnostics, podiatry, any elective treatment following a trauma and medicines management where those services are related to the muscular skeletal services. Whilst the aim of the project is to improve patient outcomes and expereince for patients by reduce waiting times for treatment and meet the growing demand for services there is also an aim to deliver cost savings by reducing inefficiencies, for example where failure to provide physiotherapy in a timely way might result in a need for surgery.

If you have experiences as a patient with diabetes or of the muscular skeletal services or any experiences of health and care services to share with us in confidence or you would like to know more about our work, please get in touch
on 01386 550 264 or info@healthwatchworcestershire.co.uk