May 2018

2019-01-09T11:07:15+00:001st May 2018|Latest blog|

Thanks for joining me for this month’s blog and there’s lots going on here at the CCG.

This week we are proud to be celebrating NHS Employers Equality, Diversity and Human Rights Week (14th-18th May 2018). This week is a national platform for organisations to highlight their work to create a fairer, more inclusive NHS for patients and staff. The official theme for this year is diverse, inclusive, together and aims to raise awareness of equality, diversity and human rights issues in the NHW and celebrate best practice.

For more information about the week, please visit:

I’m sure you don’t need me to remind you about the bank holiday at the end of the month, but I do advise you to plan ahead and know where to go for appropriate medical advice and treatment over the bank holiday weekend.

There will be changes to opening times for local healthcare services over the bank holiday weekends, including some closures on Monday 28 May. For protection against illness, please remember to take practical steps which include checking local pharmacy opening hours, stocking up on over the counter remedies and picking up your repeat prescriptions.

Your local pharmacist is the first place to go to for fast and convenient clinical advice or over the counter medicines to treat minor health concerns such as sore throats, coughs, colds, tummy troubles, teething and aches and pains – no appointment needed. They can also refer patients to further professional help where necessary.

You can find a full list of pharmacies in Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale that will be open on Monday 7 May and Monday 28 May here please telephone your usual pharmacy before travelling.

GP and nurse appointments are also available at the ‘extended hours hubs’ across the borough. You can book appointments in advance by ringing the central booking service on 0161 763 8292.  For more information, click here.

The NHS 111 service is available if you urgently need medical help or advice, but don’t have a 999 emergency and you can find up-to-date and expert advice on a range of illnesses and complaints, as well as find your nearest NHS services, such as GPs, dentists and pharmacists visit NHS Choices at

This month we have launched a competition to design a 70th birthday card for the NHS. The NHS turns 70 on 5th July 2018 and in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council we are running a competition for local primary school pupils to design a birthday card to mark the occasion. We’re encouraging primary school pupils in Reception class to Year 6 to create a 70th birthday card which shows how doctors, nurses and other health professionals have helped them, their families and friends.

Budding artists can use any colouring or craft materials they like and designs must fit on the birthday card template. This is available from or the HMR CCG Communications team. Please email or call 01706 652158 to request one. Three winners will be announced at the HMR CCG Annual General Meeting being held on 15 June 2018 at Number One Riverside, Rochdale.

Prizes up for grabs include a six month Junior Link4Life membership, one Summer Holiday play scheme place and Family Swim vouchers – all kindly donated by Link4Life -The first prize winner’s entry will also be displayed at Number One Riverside during July as part of our plans with Rochdale Borough Council to celebrate 70 years of one of the nation’s most loved institutions.

You can find out more about the competition – including an activity sheet to help children learn about the different job roles in the NHS, a creative brief featuring Rochelle from Rochdale’s Healthy Heroes and the birthday card template – at

Our newly developed website called ‘Our Rochdale’ has gone live and has been designed to make it even easier for local people to find out all they need to know about health and social care services, support, advice and activities in Rochdale borough. Created by HMR CCG and Rochdale Borough Council ‘Our Rochdale’ replaces the former family services directory and is a free online resource which includes regularly updated details of services for children and young people aged 0-25 years with individual needs, as well as support for children and families in Rochdale borough. You can also find information and advice about adult social care, including groups, activities and events and care, along with details of health and wellbeing related support available locally. To view the directory visit:

Our Test Bed project has been in the press with news of how Milnrow man Brian Hodgson has benefitted from a service allowing him to monitor his health from his home. Brian, 70, who has hypertension and diabetes, participated in the Closercare® service, part of a broader project launched in Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale to test new technologies in healthcare. Read about the positive impact the service has had on Brian’s health here and you can find out more about the project here.

I’m also delighted to share the news that health and care professionals working in the Rochdale borough have been shortlisted in four categories for the first ever Greater Manchester Health and Care Champion Awards. They are among 33 champions who have been shortlisted from almost 400 nominations completed by patients, colleagues and the general public from across Greater Manchester. The Greater Manchester Health and Care Champion Awards 2018 are the first Greater Manchester-wide awards to recognise members of our paid and unpaid workforce who regularly go above and beyond to improve the health and wellbeing of the people of Greater Manchester. To find out who has been shortlisted for the awards, visit The winners will be announced at a sponsored event in July. Good luck to all our local nominees!

This month is Greater Manchester’s annual month long festival of walking. Walking is simple, free and one of the easiest ways to get more active and become healthier. Throughout May 370 walks will take place across all ten districts of Greater Manchester. They are completely free to join and will be led by experienced walk leaders.  All ages and abilities are catered for and with the ability to filter an online calendar by level of difficulty and district, you’re sure to find a walk to suit you. Find out more here

Finally, there are some key dates coming up in the CCG’s diary. There are two opportunities to get involved in local healthcare this month by attending our Governing Body meeting on Friday 18 May at Number One Riverside, Smith Street, Rochdale, OL16 1XU (details here) or our Primary Care Commissioning Committee meeting on Friday 25 May at Kashmir Youth Project, Unique Enterprise Centre, Belfield Road, Rochdale, OL16 2UP (details here). Both meetings are held in public and local people are very welcome to attend.

Our Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place on Friday 15 June 9.45am – 1.00pm in the Training and Conference Suite, Number One Riverside, Smith Street, Rochdale, OL16 1XU. The AGM gives the CCG the opportunity to discuss its achievements and challenges during 2017/18 and also celebrate the NHS turning 70 with the announcement of our school birthday card competition winner. Local people are invited to attend the AGM, and if you wish to do so, please contact the Communications Team via email at or by calling 01706 652853.

Thanks for reading