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Member Practice Update

  18 July 2018

Welcome to the member practice update

This weekly Member Practice Update is produced by NHS Redditch and Bromsgrove, NHS South Worcestershire and NHS Wyre Forest Clinical Commissioning Groups for circulation in your practice, to provide you with essential guidance, information and useful support.

Your views and feedback are very much appreciated. If you have any comments, suggestions or contributions for inclusion in the Member Practice Bulletin, please e-mail the communications team.

In this issue:

Find out about local and national events and training here.

  • No Redditch & Bromsgrove specific news
  • No South Worcestershire specific news
  • No Wyre Forest specific news

General Practice Forward View - Workforce

We’re now in year two of the five year GPFV and whilst progress is being made in a number of areas, we know we have some enormous challenges facing us – the most critical being Workforce.

We have recently submitted a bid, jointly with Herefordshire, for funding to implement four key priorities to help us retain our GP workforce. We’re expecting an announcement shortly and hope that we’ll be as successful with this as we have been in securing additional funding for the Internal Resilience Team and Practice Management development and mentorship.

We haven’t had many applications for Transformation Funds so we’ll re-issue guidance on this next week. The June GPFV progress report is available here, if you have any questions on anything highlighted, please contact Sharon.kendrick@nhs.net who can make sure the most appropriate member of the Primary Care Team contacts you.

We are also aware of a new service that Health Education England is offering to support GPs and other doctors who are needing a visa to remain working in the UK. We have recently lost a GP in Worcestershire due to visa problems and we can't have this happen again. We’ve attached a letter from Dr Katharine King (Director of General Practice at HEE) which describes the support available.

Thank you Dr Veronica Wilkie for sharing this with us.

Patients at risk of Malignant Spinal Cord Compression (MSCC)

Message sent on behalf of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust

There is a diagnostic and management pathway in use across Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust (WAHT) for all patients with suspected MSCC, in line with NICE Guidance CG75. Please refer to NICE guidance for more details www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg75.

The MSCC co-ordinator should provide the first point of contact if you have a patient who may be developing spinal metastases or MSCC. The MSCC co-ordinator is the Acute Oncology Service (AOS) Nurse Monday to Friday, 9.00am – 5.00pm, obtainable on Bleep 398/ 491 or the Oncology Consultant on-call out of hours via WAHT switchboard, Tel. 01905 763333.

The action that may be taken will depend on the risk stratification of each patient:

Low risk

Advise patient of symptoms and re-contact the MSCC co-ordinator if concerned

Moderate risk e.g. symptoms suggestive of spinal metastases

Urgent Out-Patient MRI and report within one week

High risk eg. symptoms suggestive of spinal metastases plus neurological symptoms or signs suggestive of MSCC

Admit patient and urgent whole spine MRI and report within 24 hours

MSCC does not only occur in patients with a known diagnosis of cancer but may be their presenting symptom. Frequent clinical reviews are recommended for patients with cancer who develop lower spinal pain that is clinically of non-specific origin, or patients without a cancer diagnosis who develop suspicious spinal pain with or without neurological symptoms.

Patient information leaflets are available at www.macmillan.org.uk/information-and-support

Prescribing Top Tip


The MHRA, in conjunction with the EMA, have issued a class 1 recall of ALL batches & ALL strengths of Dexcel generic valsartan capsules,   Accord generic valsartan tablets and Accord valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide 160/12.5mg tablets as a precautionary measure following concerns of possible contamination with toxins.

Full details of the MHRA alert can be viewed here.

Pharmacies and dispensaries have been asked to immediately quarantine all batches of these products and return them to their wholesalers; the MHRA however, are not asking for patients to be necessarily contacted and are encouraging patients to continue to take their medication. Whilst other generic valsartan & valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide preparations are available from other manufacturers, this recall is liable to impact on the future availability of these items and the ability of pharmacies and dispensaries to fulfil prescriptions; practices are advised to check with their local pharmacies with regard to this.

Practices are also likely to receive queries from patients about this issue moving forward and may wish to pro-actively make contact with those currently receiving these products.

If you have any suggestions for inclusion in the 'Top Tips' then please send them to akingham@nhs.net

SafeLives Insight Report - Length of Abuse and Access to Services 

Please read the Insights Report from SafeLives around the length of abuse and access to services. The report contains a range of challenges in respect of children, adults, older people, those suffering Honour Based Violence and the LGBT+ victims of domestic abuse (who are almost invisible to services).

Some of these challenges are further explored in separate spotlight reports that can be accessed at www.safelives.org.uk/knowledge-hub/spotlights. The development of Worcestershire domestic abuse and sexual violence website continues and a new revised Overview of Services was uploaded this week:


Share your NHS WiFi experience

NHS Digital is working to make sure that everyone can access free WiFi in NHS sites in England. NHS WiFi will provide a secure, stable, and reliable WiFi capability, consistent across all NHS settings. It will allow patients and the public to download health apps, browse the internet and access health and care information. Many of your GP practices are already WiFi enabled and offering this to patients.

NHS Digital is keen for GP practices in the Midlands and East regions to share their experience around usage, patient feedback and any unexpected benefits since implementing NHS WiFi. This will form part of national communications and best practice sharing.

Experience could include practice staff being able to work more efficiently, patients accessing health apps, websites or booking appointments or an improvement in the waiting time experience as patients can access emails and social media.

To share your experience or to discuss further please contact the WiFi team at nhswifi@nhs.net



Wyre Forest Health Partnership (WFHP) is appointing a Salaried GP at their Bewdley Medical Centre site, working 6–8 sessions per week.

More information is available here.