Sunday, 28 October 2012

Datix supports Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) 30th Anniversary Gala Event

Datix, a global supplier of patient safety software, is sponsoring a range of awards at the special Gala Evening to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA), the UK’s leading charity for patient safety and justice. The prestigious event takes place on 23rd November at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London and marks the progress that has been made since AvMA was founded in 1982. The evening aims to bring together key people from the patient safety and medico-legal worlds and promises to attract considerable attention and publicity among the clinical negligence industry.

Jonathan Hazan, Chief Executive of Datix, said, “There have been many advances in patient safety over the last thirty years, but {{there is always more that can be done to reduce the number and severity of adverse events}}, as well as delivering fairer responses when things go wrong. Today, more than ever, AvMA remains at the forefront of pushing for change and improvement on behalf of people affected by medical accidents and we are delighted to support the organisation as it reaches a momentous milestone in its history.”

AvMA continues to be a powerful voice on behalf of those affected by medical accidents, to improve patient safety and ensure access to justice. It provides extensive support and advice to families and individuals via a dedicated helpline and a team of specially trained case workers. It also plays a vital role in helping people during complex and often stressful processes such as inquests and compensation claims.

Peter Walsh, Chief Executive of AvMA said, “We are extremely grateful to Datix for supporting our awards for people who have contributed to patient safety and justice during the charity’s 30th anniversary year. Datix continues to make a substantial contribution to patient safety and this is symbolic of how businesses as well as health professionals and patients themselves have a valuable role to play.”

AvMA’s 30th Anniversary Gala Celebration will provide guests with the perfect opportunity to network and socialise in a relaxed atmosphere offering a drinks reception and three course meal with wine, live entertainment and dancing. To find out more or to purchase tickets, please contact AvMA’s events team on 020 8688 9555 or by email at

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Premier Inn reveals Sleep-o-Scopes research

A Premier Inn report has revealed sleeping positions can reflect moods, stress levels and even personality, with the most common way of sleeping being the foetal position (58%), reflecting that Brits are subconsciously trying to de-stress in their sleep.

The Sleep-o-Scopes research, carried out by the UK's best loved budget hotel chain, Premier Inn, alongside leading British body language expert, Robert Phipps, unveiled 'the log' as the second most common sleeping position with 28% of Brits saying they sleep straight with their arms and legs by their side. The report highlights that sleeping in such a rigid position can lead to individuals being very stubborn and set in their ways. 

Despite, over half of the nation sleeping in a way that shows they are stressed, a quarter say they sleep on their side with their arms stretched out ('the yearner'), meaning they are constantly on the hunt for new challenges to try and reach for their dreams.

Not only are sleeping positions revealing people's stress levels, but also that many are anxious and feeling out of control, with 17% saying they sleep on their front with their arms above their head in the 'freefaller'.

Premier Inn spokesperson, Claire Haigh, said: "Many people read their horoscopes, but we wanted to give our guests a more unique way to look at how their day might turn out by looking at how they sleep. We have worked with Robert to develop 'sleep-o-scopes' and were shocked that the research revealed just how stressed we are as a nation.

"It is important we try and wind down after a long day and get a good night's rest so we wake up refreshed and ready to tackle the day ahead. Many of us experience a number of stressful things during the day and we offer a Good Night Guarantee to ensure our guests get the best possible sleep regardless of the day they have had."

Robert Phipps, Britain's leading body language expert, commented: "We all know a good night's sleep sets you up for the following day but I don’t think many people realise that the position they sleep in can determine how they will feel when they wake up for the day ahead.

"We have looked at four of the most common sleeping positions and developed Sleep-o-Scopes by looking at what the body language tells us about how you're feeling when you sleep and how that can affect the new day ahead from the moment you wake up."

Like predictions read from the stars and the moon, Premier Inn's Sleep-o-Scopes are open to interpretation and rely on other influencing factors, but hope to give guests an interesting insight to their day.

Whether guests wake up in 'the foetal', 'the log', 'yearner' or 'freefaller', Premier Inn offers all guests a 'Good Night Guarantee' - which means if guests are not 100% satisfied with their stay they can request a full refund. Premier Inn is so committed to its philosophy that everyone deserves a great night’s sleep, that they recently invested £70 million into refurbishing c. 13,000 rooms.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Lyng Pharmacy and Quit Direct: Rates now top 80%!

Lyng Pharmacy and Quit DirectSandwell in the Black Country of the West Midlands has amongst the highest rates of social deprivation and health inequalities in the region.
The number of smokers in Sandwell are some of the highest in the region. In the six months since Lyng Pharmacy teamed up with Quit Direct to provide a ‘one-stop –shop’ for patients and customers who want to stop smoking, it has averaged impressive quit rates of over 80%.

Since April 2012, Lyng Pharmacy in West Bromwich has been working closely with specialist smoking cessation organisation Quit Direct to further improve its healthcare offering. Quit Direct was awarded a structured contract to supply smoking cessation services for NHS West Midlands in September 2011.This enables it to provide its services for free to many organisations and at public clinics throughout the region. The move has already paid major health dividends for the community served by Lyng Pharmacy.

Pharmacist Jay Sahota said: "Lyng Pharmacy is an independent pharmacy that truly belongs to the community. We provide a range of specifically catered healthcare services for our patients and have always delivered to an exceptional standard. I am pleased to say that our partnership with Quit Direct has proved to be an even greater success. Stephanie Haynes has worked integrally with our pharmacy team to achieve high quit rates. Patients receive a complete end-to-end service that works very well. We will be expanding the service to cater for the growth in demand of the smoking cessation service.”

Lyng Pharmacy has proudly served the community for over 10 years. The community has also actively supported Lyng Pharmacy - particularly following the controversial period in 2006 when it was announced that one of Europe’s largest health centres was to be built on the Lyng estate.

Although compulsory purchase forced a move – and a major multinational competitor secured Lyng’s preferred location (prompting a petition signed by 2000 residents) – Lyng Pharmacy went on to flourish. The site of an old engineering works at the back of the health centre eventually became the new Lyng Lane centre of operations in 2007.

In the words of Jay Sahota:
“We won't quit but we will help others to!"

Quit Direct’s on-site Advisor Stephanie Haynes said:  “Giving up smoking is really the most important health resolution any smoker can make. I’m available at the Lyng Pharmacy every Friday from 10.30 am until 2pm – each client has twelve free sessions and I offer the particular level of personal support each smoker requires. The sessions help us build up a real rapport with the clients, which helps them to sustain the motivation to quit. We are delighted to have 22 clients on board at the moment with new people wanting to quit signing up most weeks. The pharmacists are incredibly proactive in referring clients – so when people come for their NRT products they are generally advised of the smoking cessation support we offer as well.”

Quit Direct’s programme includes behavioural counselling aligned with the recommended Nicotine Replacement Therapy product best suited to each individual. As well as free weekly group or 1:1 sessions, additional support is provided as required by telephone, SMS text and Skype on-line.

West Midlands pharmacies wanting to empower their customers to stop smoking, should first call Natalia Robinson at Quit Direct on 08000 33 75 06.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Monitoring your diabetes at home

When it was finally confirmed that I was diabetic I decided that I wanted to do more than just take the Metformin and hope for the best.

I decided that I would be pro-active and that I would actively monitor my own blood glucose levels.

I and my wife visited a branch of Boots Chemists and looked at the range of home blood sugar test kits. The range was impressive and after some examination of what was available, my wife and I decided that we would buy an Accu-Chek unit by Aviva.

The one we decided to buy cost just under £16.00 and was able to add points to our Boots card!

The kit comes with a certain amount of sterile lancets and test strips to get you started with testing your blood sugar levels. The lancets and test strips are commonly available from all good chemists and pharmacists.

Although the test kits themselves aren't available on prescription the lancets and the test strips are available on prescription.

There is a comprehensive instruction handbook that comes with the kit and an equally comprehensive Quick Start Guide which had me testing my blood sugar levels within minutes, it really is that simple to operate.

It consists of the test unit itself which looks a little like a mobile phone and which sits very comfortably in the hand; a chip to put in the unit and a finger pricker which has a variable strength setting.

You fix the test strip in the unit, you fix the lancet drum on the finger pricker, prick your finger with it and then place the test strip end into the blood. Within approximately six seconds your blood sugar level appears on the tester.

The instructions carry information about error codes that might appear and how to deal with them.

To find out more about this and other blood glucose monitoring devices that Roche Diagnostics make you can visit or (in the UK) call 0800 701 000 or in Eire 1 800 709 600.