Victoria Infirmary News

A NEW voice has joined the campaign to maintain services at Northwich’s infirmary.

A doctor spoke to Northwich Town Council at its latest meeting about proposals to cut the GP out of hours service at Victoria Infirmary Northwich (VIN).  Dr Adrian Heald stressed that he was speaking as a private citizen when he addressed town councilors about the service, which has been under consultation because it is under-used.

A decision about reducing the service at VIN and moving the resources to Leighton Hospital was expected to be made in April but health bosses from East Cheshire NHS Trust decided to look into it further after public outcry in the initial consultation.

Speaking to town councillors, Dr Heald emphasised the difficulties for mid Cheshire patients travelling to Crewe if they did not own a car and said the current service should be advertised.

He said: “What I would propose is that the public of Vale Royal are made fully aware of the GP out of hours provision at VIN in evenings and weekends.

“There should be advertising on relevant websites – Cheshire West and Chester Council, Cheshire East Council and the hospital website – so the public are fully aware such provision exists.

“Following a public awareness campaign we could see if there’s increased uptake at VIN.”

He added: “VIN itself makes a very important contribution to the health of people in this area and it should be built on.

East Cheshire NHS Trust is expected to update Cheshire West and Chester councillors on its plans in July.

Extracts from BMJ: June 14 2012

Srividya Seshadri, Pippa Oakeshott, Catherine Nelson-Piercy, and Lucy C Chappell

New leadership and management development programme

Skills for Health

The need for effective leadership and management skills has never been more crucial within the healthcare sector. However, organisations have traditionally focused on strategic and senior leadership development. Given the current challenges facing healthcare organisations at an operational level, it is essential that leadership skills are developed in service level staff, both to help resolve the current challenges, but also to provide a continuity of leadership development for staff who may progress to more senior roles.

Skills for Health are supporting healthcare sector employers by providing a leadership and management development programme primarily aimed at staff equivalent to Agenda for Change Bands 5-7. The programme focuses on an introduction to leadership and the associated skills. It aims to develop a cohort of enthusiastic and motivated staff who are relatively new to leadership responsibilities or are highly likely to move into a more formal leadership role.

The programme, which is mapped to the NHS Leadership Framework and the Leadership and Management National Occupational Standards, is delivered via three intensive workshop days. It explores key elements of leadership and management including leadership styles, change management and communication skills through a combination of presentation, facilitated discussion, practical exercises, reflective learning, and group work. A key element is the application of the learning from the programme to current service challenges faced by the individuals.

Investing in leadership is recognised as essential by all good organisations. If you are interested in exploring how Skills for Health’s Leadership and Management programme could help your organisation please contact your regional / country representative at for further information.

NHS Evidence Updates – Cancer

The following updates are available from NHS Evidence


via Evidence Updates – NHS Evidence – Search Engine for Evidence in Health and Social Care.

End of life care qualifications

Skills for Care has developed end of life care qualifications in conjunction with a wide range of employers including Marie Curie Cancer Care, the UK Home Care Association and Barchester Care, in addition to a number of hospices.

The qualifications will help adult social care employers support the national end of life strategy. They also build on the work of common core competences and principles for end of life care.


The Mental Health Act 2007: a review of its implementation

This report examines key issues in the operation of the Mental Health Act five years on. It finds that while there have been some improvements in the treatment of people detained under the Act there remain major concerns about the use of compulsory powers and the availability of advocacy and support for the most vulnerable people. It argues that CCGs and local authorities must ensure that they uphold the rights of people detained under the Mental Health Act as they take up their new responsibilities.