To mark the 70th anniversary of the National Health Service, NHS ‘Big7Tea’ events will be taking place at around 30 GP practices across east and west Suffolk during July.
With the simple cup of tea long associated with good care and the NHS, ‘Big7Tea’ is an opportunity for GP practices to invite local people to join them in conversation about health and the NHS, over a refreshing cup of tea and a slice of cake.
Staff are aiming to encourage those who feel isolated or lonely to go along and meet and talk with others and use ‘Big7Tea’ as an opportunity to connect with local community groups to help alleviate their isolation.
There will be lots of useful information to help people best look after their own health. Those attending will be encouraged to sign up to sharing their health record, meaning that any health professional called upon to treat them in an emergency will be able to access their health record. People will be able to learn more about the importance of flu and shingles vaccinations and will be encouraged to ask questions and find out more about their GP practice and what advice and support services are available locally.
Each event is being organised by individual GP practices and the practices’ patient participation groups (the PPGs), according to size and location, with support from NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk and NHS West Suffolk clinical commissioning groups (the CCGs).
Each GP practice will be advertising details of any event they are hosting.
Richard Watson, deputy chief officer for the CCGs, said: “The NHS has an integral role in all our lives and it is fitting that we celebrate the 70th anniversary of this tremendous institution and recognise the hard work of its dedicated NHS staff.
“The ‘Big7Tea’ events are a lovely opportunity to alleviate some of the loneliness that many in our community feel, a chance to learn more about looking after your health better as well as reminisce about your experiences of using the NHS.
“We really appreciate the work of GP practice staff and PPG members in hosting these events. While we know not every practice has the resources to participate, there are many other ways in which people can show their appreciation for their NHS, such as by signing up to become a blood donor or joining the organ donor register.”
Keith Redfern, chairman of the PPG at Ravenswood Medical Centre, which is hosting an event on July 26 at Ravenswood Community Centre, said: “Not having an NHS is unimaginable which is why celebrating this landmark 70th anniversary is so important.
“We hope that local people will come along and not only celebrate with us, but take the opportunity to learn more about the work the PPG does in supporting Ravenswood Medical Centre and get some really useful advice on living well.”
To see how you can contribute to the NHS70 celebrations visit – https://www.nhs70.nhs.uk/