Monthly Archives: January 2021

Managing Hearing Loss and Tinnitus During COVID-19

Struggling to hear when on the phone? Neighbours complaining you have your TV a bit too loud? Asking others to repeat themselves a lot? You may be one of the 12 million individuals experiencing hearing loss. Hearing loss can be caused by a range of factors including wax, infection, noise exposure or aging.

Another form of hearing impairment is Tinnitus. Tinnitus is a noise in one or both ears that has no external source. People describe their tinnitus as a ringing, buzzing, whistling or a range of other sounds. If you are concerned you may be developing hearing loss or Tinnitus, you should contact your GP.

For many, hearing loss can be life changing and can have a profound effect on their mental health. Research shows 1 in 2 people with hearing loss will struggle with their mental health during their lifetime, compared to 1 in 4 of the general public. Often, it is not the condition itself but societal and cultural factors, such as communication and stigmatised attitudes, that can lead to isolation and loneliness. It is important to look after our mental health and wellbeing at the current time and to support those who may be struggling with a hearing impairment. If you or someone you know is struggling with hearing loss and you feel it is having a negative impact on your mental health, check out these resources for additional support:

General resources about Mental Health and coronavirus:

  1. Mind ,
  2. Mental Health Foundation ,
  3. Samaritans ,
  4. NHS Every Mind Matters

RNID – Managing Hearing Loss and Tinnitus During Covid-19 Information Pack

Social Media:

  1. 25th January 9.40 am – @ShropsCCG and @telfordCCG are urging people to support those who may be struggling with hearing loss and be understanding of the barriers they face during lockdown. Learn more at: {link to web article} @BritishTinnitus @RNID
  2. 29th January 11 am – Do you have a ringing, buzzing or whistling in your ears? You may have Tinnitus. Contact your GP if you are concerned. @RNID @BritishTinnitus Learn more at:
  3. 3rd February 3 pm – Did you know Tinnitus is very common and affects 1 in 8 adults of all ages across the UK? For more information, visit: @BritishTinnitus @RNID 
  4. 5th February 12 noon – 1 in 2 people with hearing loss will struggle with their mental health. If you are struggling, @SignHealth has a free text service for deaf people: @RNID
  5.  8th February 4 pm – Struggle to hear on the phone? Neighbours complaining your TV is too loud? You may be one of the 12 million individuals struggling with hearing loss. Don’t struggle in silence. Contact your GP.
    hearing-loss-and-tinnitus-during-covid-19 @BritishTinnitus @RNID


Virtual Art Competition invitation to SDN members

With the lockdown having an impact on a lot of people’s mental wellbeing, The Bobath Centre feel it is so important to allow people to explore their emotions and feelings through the process of creating, painting or drawing. 

They are hosting a virtual art competition and would love to invite as many people to take part in the event, so they have contacted SDN asking that we share details of the competition with Shropshire Disability Network members.

How to enter the competition:

To enter the competition each participant will need to pay £1 and then send their art work digitally to our marketing team at by 20th February 2021. *When sending your art work The Bobath Centre will need the participants full name and a contact email address.

To pay your £1 to enter the competition, click this link:

Further details:

  • The competition will be judged and there will be 4 prizes up for grabs.
  • There will be the opportunity for individuals to sell their art work should they wish and part of the donation will go to The Bobath Centre.
  • Winners will be announced on Thursday 25th February 2021 at 1 pm

What is the Bobath Centre?

Bobath are a specialist treatment and training centre, and a charity dedicated to supporting children and families living with cerebral palsy and similar neurological conditions. They are based in Watford.

They are the UK’s premier teaching centre who have contributed to the training of NHS and other health professionals. This has allowed thousands of children, who are unable to travel to the Centre at Watford, to benefit from the Bobath approach in their local community.

For further information, click here to visit their website

Proposal to create SEND resource provision at Lacon Childe School

Shropshire Council in accordance with The School Organisation (Making Prescribed Alterations) Regulations 2016, proposes to establish a resource provision at Lacon Childe School and offer up to 20 places for secondary aged learners with moderate learning difficulties and communication and interaction difficulties (including autism spectrum conditions from the 2021 autumn term).

Click on the link below to read the proposal:

In the four weeks from publication of the notice (13 January 2021) any person may make comments or object to the proposal by clicking on the ‘How to get involved’ tab at this link and completing a short questionnaire.

Alternatively, you can respond in writing to: c/o the Headteachers PA, Resourced Provision Consultation, Lacon Childe School, Love Lane, Cleobury Mortimer, Shropshire DY14 8PE or by emailing

What happens after the consultation?

Once the responses to the consultation process have been analysed, a report will be prepared for Shropshire council’s cabinet. The report will include a summary of comments received from individuals and photocopies of the responses from recognised organisations. The report will be a public document, so will be available to the media and on the school and council websites.

Shropshire Council will consider the response to the consultation and form a view about what they believe to be the appropriate provision for the future. This will happen as soon as possible after the end of the consultation period.

Please note this consultation ends on Tuesday 9th February 2021

Vaccine Hesitancy -A short film

NHS England and NHS Improvement have produced a short film which describes what is a vaccine is, how vaccines are made, why you should get a vaccine, whether a vaccine can make you ill and how to decide whether to have a vaccine.

This film shows Katie Matthews, Learning Disability and Autism Manager ask Dr Roger Banks, National Clinical Director of Learning Disability & Autism questions about vaccines.

Watch/Listen to the short video here:

You can download an easy read document that shows all the questions and answers from the video above: Vaccines ER Final Version 8-12-20 (2)

Vaccine hesitancy, also known as anti-vaccination or anti-vax, is a reluctance or refusal to be vaccinated or to have one’s children vaccinated against contagious diseases. It was identified by the World Health Organization as one of the top ten global health threats

Covid-19 vaccination roll-out in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin

Kate Manning, Communications and Engagement Manager at Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Sustainability and Transformation Partnership has asked that we share with you the following information on the Covid-19 vaccination roll-out in this county.

  •  The NHS vaccination programme is underway in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin as part of the national rollout.
  •  The NHS will contact people in the priority groups when it is their turn to receive the vaccine. People are being called forward who meet the criteria based on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s recommendations.

The public have an important part to play:

  •  please don’t contact the NHS to seek a vaccine, the NHS will contact you;
  •  when we do contact you, please attend your booked appointments; and
  •  please continue to follow all the guidance to control the virus and save lives.
  •  The vaccine cannot give you COVID-19 infection, and it will reduce your chance of becoming seriously ill. We do not yet know whether it will stop you from catching and passing on the virus. So, it is important to follow the guidance in your local area to protect those around you.

Whether or not you have had the vaccine you still need to:

  •  practice social distancing
  •  wear a face mask
  •  wash your hands carefully and frequently
  •  follow the current guidance

Vaccination started in the county on 8th December and as of 7th January the following vaccination centres are in operation:

o   Hospital Hub at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital run in partnership with Shrewsbury Primary Care Network

o   Local Vaccination Centre at Bridgnorth Medical Centre being delivered by GPs from the South East Shropshire Primary Care Network (group of local GP practices)

o   Local Vaccination Centre at Malinslee Healthcare Centre being delivered by GPs from the Teldoc Primary Care Network (group of local GP practices)

o   Hospital Hub at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital run in partnership with North Shropshire Primary Care Network

  •  Care home residents are also now receiving the vaccine in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin with the ambition that all older person care home residents and staff will have had the vaccination by the end of January. GP practices will contact care homes directly to plan the rollout as soon as they are ready. 
  •  The vaccine will be offered to more people and at other locations as soon as possible. These will include local vaccine services provided by GPs and pharmacists, in people’s homes for those who are housebound and new dedicated vaccination centres to make sure that everyone who needs a vaccine is able to get one.
  •  By the middle of February, in line with the Prime Minister’s announcement on 4th January, it is our ambition to deliver the vaccine to the four top priority groups. These include all residents in a care home for older adults and their carers, everyone over the age of 70, all frontline health and social care workers, and everyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable.

For more information about the Covid-19 vaccine please visit:

Below are a number of helpful documents to read and/or download to print:

Covid19 Easy Read Leaflet: Covid-19_Easy-read_leaflet

Covid19 Vaccination -A guide for adults in large print PHE_Covid19Vaccination_AGuideForAdults_LargePrintLeaflet_WebAccessible_2020_FINAL3

Why do I have to wait for my jab leaflet:  PHE_11920_Covid-19_AZ_Why_do_I_DL_leaflet_02_WEB

Covid19 Priority List Poster: PHE_11895_COVID_vaccine_priority_poster

Covid19 A Guide for AdultsCOV2020312_Covid-19_Guide_for_Adults_A3_poster_02_WEB (3)

A & E signage at RSH and PRH Hospitals-Have your say

Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust. are reviewing the signage in their A&E departments. They would like to know what you think of the signage and information displayed in the Emergency Departments at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and Princess Royal Hospital in Telford. 

By signage, they mean any type of sign displayed on the wall or overhead to help point you in the right direction.
By patient information, they mean any type of information displayed in the waiting room, such as:


  • – posters
  • – leaflets
  • – booklets
  • – TV screens

Click here to take part in the survey:

If you wish to take part in the survey but would prefer easy read version click on this link

This surveys above has been designed by the Patient Experience Team. If you require this survey in an alternative format, please email or call 01743 261000 ext: 3032 / 2503 or write to Patient Experience Team, Stretton House, Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, Mytton Oak Road, Shrewsbury, SY3 8XQ


Ask for Ani (Attention Needed Immediately)

Victims of domestic abuse will be able to escape perpetrators by using a code-word in thousands of pharmacies across the UK, including here on the Isle of Wight.

The new scheme, entitled ‘Ask for ANI’, allows those at risk or suffering from abuse to discreetly signal that they need help and access support. By asking for ANI, a trained pharmacy worker will offer a private space where they can ascertain further information.

Depending on the situation, the staff member can then alert the Police or help the victim access support services such as a national or local domestic abuse helpline.

As an essential retailer based on high streets across the country, and with specifically trained staff, pharmacies can provide a safe space for victims to sound an alarm if they are isolated at home with their abuser and unable to get help in another way.

The Prime Minister committed to launch this scheme at the Hidden Harms summit last year in recognition of the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on the ability of victims to reach out for help and support. The scheme was initially proposed by survivors as something that would have helped them.

Boris Johnson has said:

“As we once again have to ask people across the country to stay at home to tackle this virus, it’s vital that we take action to protect those for who home is not a safe space.

That is why we have launched this scheme, supported by pharmacies up and down the country, to give some of the most vulnerable people in society a critical lifeline – making sure they have access to the support they need and keep them safe from harm.”

The codeword scheme will be promoted using discreet social media adverts and paid search. Pharmacies will be given promotional material to display in-store to signal to victims that they are participating. Health professionals, social workers and Job Centres will also be asked to promote the scheme, alongside police, local authorities and specialist support services for victims.

The scheme will be initially available through the 2,300 Boots stores across the UK as well as 255 independent pharmacies. More pharmacies are expected to join the scheme.

Be Alert to Vaccine Fraud

Action Fraud is warning the public to be alert as criminals beginning to take advantage of the rollout of the Covid19 vaccines to commit fraud.

Pauline Smith, Head of Action Fraud, said:
“The vaccine is a crucial tool in fighting the coronavirus and keeping people safe. Thankfully, the number of reports into Action Fraud are relatively low but we have seen an increase in the last two months, particularly around scam text messages. 

“Remember, the vaccine is only available on the NHS and is free of charge. The NHS will never ask you for details about your bank account or to pay for the vaccine. If you receive an email, text message or phone call purporting to be from the NHS and you are asked to provide financial details, this is a scam.”

Action Fraud has received reports from members of the public who have been sent text messages claiming to be from the NHS, offering them the opportunity to sign up for the vaccine. The texts ask the recipient to click on a link which takes them to an online form where they are prompted to input personal and financial details. In some cases the online form has looked very similar to the real NHS website.

2601 COVID-19 Vaccine Fraud Poster V31024_1

How to protect yourself:

In the UK, coronavirus vaccines will only be available via the National Health Services of England, Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland. You can be contacted by the NHS, your employer, a GP surgery or pharmacy local to you, to receive your vaccine. Remember, the vaccine is free of charge. At no point will you be asked to pay.

– The NHS will never ask you for your bank account or card details.

– The NHS will never ask you for your PIN or banking password.

– The NHS will never arrive unannounced at your home to administer the vaccine.

– The NHS will never ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents such as your passport, driving licence, bills or pay slips.  

If you receive a call you believe to be fraudulent, hang up. If you are suspicious about an email you have received, forward it to Suspicious text messages should be forwarded to the number 7726 which is free of charge.

If you believe you are the victim of a fraud, please report this to Action Fraud as soon as possible by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting

Because we all care

CQC (Care Quality Commission) have teamed up with Healthwatch and other health and care partners to launch a campaign “Because we all care”

New research shows nearly two thirds of people would support NHS and social care services by actively providing feedback on their care. People also say they are more grateful for their healthcare services since the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

This campaign aims to:

  • help services identify and address quality issues
  • support patients by encouraging people to share feedback on individual experience

Over the year, we’ve focused on:

Click on the link below to watch/listen to the “Because we all care campaign”

Click on this link to give feedback on your care: or take part in Healthwatch own survey at this link: Both of these surveys are both short and confidential. You can get help on the phone if it’s hard for you to do things online. Call 03000 616161
Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm (Excluding bank holidays)

You can also contact your local Healthwatch by phone or by email to share your experience, or for information about local services and support

Your help is needed on Blood Taking Services in Shropshire

NHS Shropshire and NHS Telford & Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Groups are reviewing their blood taking services for people living in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.  Your feedback will help shape them to shape future plans so if you or someone you care for has any experience of having to go for blood tests, either regularly or occasionally this survey is for you.

What is your experience? Could the experience you had be improved? How easy is it for you to get to the place your test will take place? How often do you need to have a blood test? Was it easy to book an appointment or did you have to wait long? These questions can affect all of us so if you can help, please by click on the link below to take the survey, it only takes a few minutes. You can also call 07870 973241 for assistance in completing the survey or request a paper copy and freepost return envelope from the CCGs.  


By taking part, you could help make these services better. Please note the survey will close on Thursday, 4 February 2021, at 5pm.

Blood Taking Services