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Help for people in Leicester to take control of their health

9th July 2019 | By Liz Mattock | Posted in

A new NHS campaign is encouraging people in Leicester City to find out how to take control of their health.

Leicester City Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has produced a series of online animations that give basic self-care advice for common ailments, together with a free booklet, the Leicester Good Health Guide, which has been delivered to households across the city.

Professor Azhar Farooqi, GP and chair of Leicester CCG, said: “We want to help people in Leicester stay well and to build their confidence in preventing and treating minor illnesses. This campaign is designed to be a starting point. The advice is basic, but we are finding that many people actually lack confidence when it comes to self-care.  Patients often come to see me wanting me to help them with a minor illness or looking for some reassurance. In most cases, patients are more capable than they think of taking care of their illness themselves.”

The short animations cover a range of common conditions such as back pain, blocked sinuses, stomach bugs and coughs – as well as what to do when children are unwell or have hurt themselves.

The Leicester Good Health Guide booklet gives more detailed advice on self-care, as many illnesses can be treated at home, with no need for medical attention. This comprehensive booklet also includes information on the NHS services that help prevent ill health, such as immunisations, and services that can detect early signs of illness. These include NHS Health Checks and screening programmes for certain types of cancer.

The booklet also gives tips on where to get support with making healthy life choices, because although most people know this will help them to stay well, it can be difficult to change unhealthy habits. Smoking, too much alcohol, unhealthy food and drink and not doing enough exercise are all linked to the illnesses that cause early death: heart disease, stroke, cancer and respiratory (breathing) diseases.

As well as being posted to people’s homes, the Leicester Good Health Guide can also be picked up at GP practices, pharmacies and community venues in Leicester City and is available in Hindi, Gujarati, Urdu and Polish. To request copies in any of these languages please email beinvolved@leicestercityccg.nhs.uk or call 0116 295 1116. The booklet can also be downloaded from Leicester City CCG’s website, where the animations can also be viewed, together with important information about when people should seek medical advice. Information can also be found on Twitter and Facebook using the hashtag #SelfCareLeicester.

Leicester City CCG will be further developing their self-care resources in the future, adding more health topics including a more detailed focus on mental wellbeing.

Professor Farooqi explained: “In Leicester we have some big health challenges. One in four households has someone with a disability or a long term illness, such as diabetes or heart, lung or kidney disease. Many of our residents live in an area where poverty is common, which means they tend to be at risk of poorer health than people who live in areas that are more well-off.

“The good news is that we can do something about it.  We can increase our chances of staying healthy by making positive choices about the way that we live. We want to provide people in Leicester with the knowledge they need, so that they can start to take control of their own health, both now and for the rest of their lives.”

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