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Recent news


Promoting awareness of medicines that can harm mental health

Are you feeling down or anxious? or is someone close to you causing concern due to changed behaviour?

Commonly used medicines and anaesthetics can cause psychiatric adverse drug reactions (ADRs) or withdrawal effects including: experiencing anxiety, mood swings, insomnia, nightmares, depression, agitation, self-harming, paranoia, suicidal or aggressive thoughts and actions.

APRIL (Adverse Psychiatric Reactions Information Link) is a UK charity promoting improved medical education and NHS support for those vulnerable to, or suffering from adverse drug reactions (ADRs,) dependence or withdrawal effects.

Video About APRIL 


The Department for Education is considering how to update the existing Sex and Relationship guidance which, was last updated in 2000, and is therefore now out of date. The updated guidance will support schools in delivering the new subjects of Relationships Education at primary and Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) at secondary, as well as, potentially, Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE).

Give Us Your Views: Online Survey​


Newsletter – January 2018

January Members’ event: 16 January 2018  2pm – 4pm  Swiss Cottage Community Centre, 19 Winchester Road, NW3 3NR


Our work is shaped by the concerns that local people raise with 152 local Healthwatch. Our annual survey of health and care priorities puts mental health at the top of the list for 2018.

Speak up logo

Using the information people have raised with their local Healthwatch, Healthwatch England have identified the top five issues people want to see addressed over the next 12 months. 


Entrance to Emergency Department (ED) is now on Gower Street

Following the completion of building works to improve our Emergency Department (ED), the entrance to the ED is now on Gower Street.

More information about whether the Emergency Department is the right place for you.


This brief questionnaire has been constructed in order that we, at Age UK London, may get a better idea of the issues that affect older Londoners.

We would really appreciate your input to help us target our priorities effectively.


The idea of encouraging self care is gaining ground with policymakers and healthcare professionals such as doctors, nurses and pharmacists. But how many ordinary people have even heard of self-care, let alone understand what it is?

The Self Care Forum Fact Sheets for common ailments aim to help clinicians and patients discuss issues around self care within the practice consultation and especially how to handle the symptoms in the future. They provide patients with information around:


SMOKERS in London who are determined to quit in 2018 can get dedicated personal support and advice from a new telephone helpline.

The Stop Smoking London helpline is 0300 123 1044.

Smokers can call the local rate number seven days a week from Monday to Fridays between 9am and 8pm, and on Saturday and Sunday between 11am and 4pm.  For more information about the range of support available visit www.stopsmokinglondon.org.uk


  • Mental health is the public’s number one issue for 2018 according to Healthwatch, a position it has held for the third year in a row

  • Social care – particularly support for older people and their carers – is a close second with half of the Healthwatch network planning to do work on this issue in the next 12 months

  • Healthwatch calls for people to contact us and speak up about their experiences and ideas on how services can be improved in 2018

Analysis by the national health and care champion, Healthwatch England, has identified the key issues the public want to see policy makers and health professionals focus on over the next 12 months.

The top five priorities people told 152 local Healthwatch that they would like us to look more at are:

  • Mental health services – 99 of 152 (65%), with specific reoccurring issues notably Mental Health in Children and Young People

  • Adult social care, including residential care homes or care at home – 77 of 152 (51%)

  • Service changes, especially the implementation of Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs) – 52 of 152 (34%)

  • Hospital care, including discharge and A&E services – 48 of 152 (32%)

  • Access to GP and dental services – 42 of 152 (28%)

Mental health was the top priority for the third year running. People highlighted this issue in 65% of areas, most notably the care and support available to children and young people. The lack of mental health awareness, early intervention and difficulty accessing effective and appropriate support were key themes.

Adult social care, particularly support for the elderly and their carers, has come a close second with local Healthwatch covering half of the country planning to do work on this issue in the next 12 months. This follows reports by Healthwatch into care homes and being cared for at home.

Third on the list are service changes, especially Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs), which aim to help make health and care services more integrated and better at delivering tailored support.

With hospital care people told us that emergency care, getting to appointments and leaving hospital, can vary greatly. Specific reoccurring themes include discharge and emergency care.

With GP services, specific themes include access and extended hours. Poor access to primary care services has a knock-on effect, as long waits to be seen by a doctor or dentist can prevent people from receiving the right diagnosis, treatment or referral to specialist services.

This list of priorities will shape our work over the next 12 months. Last year, over 340,000 spoke up about their experiences and shared their ideas with us. These views helped result in changes across England. In 2018, we want even more people to have their say.

We are calling people to contact their local Healthwatch and speak up about their ideas and experiences and are launching a campaign to get more people to share their views about these and other issues..

If you have an idea that could help improve health and care for you, a loved one or your community, contact us and #SpeakUp about your experiences and ideas on how services can be improved. No matter how big or small the issue, we want to hear about it.

Imelda Redmond, National Director of Healthwatch England, said:

“We want to see all working in health and social care make it their personal New Year’s resolution for 2018 to work with people as partners in designing the future of services. Healthwatch helps improve care by making sure services hear people’s views – what is working for you and what is not. As we approach the 70th birthday of the NHS, If anyone has a story they want to share or an idea they think might help, I urge them to get involved and speak to their local Healthwatch.”


Federation of London Local Dental Committees - Response to the Mayor of London’s Draft Health Inequalities Strategy

The LDC have quoted Healthwatch Camden's dental report in their response to the Mayor’s consultation on health inequality. The quotes are below. 


Camden Clinical Commissioning Group

Christmas and New Year GP & Pharmacy opening times

London Borough of Camden

- Christmas and New Year opening hours

- Keep well, Keep warm, Keep smart, Keep safe, Keep busy

NHS Grenfell open over Christmas and New Year holidays

- NHS Grenfell will be open over the Christmas and New Year holidays. You can contact us at any time if you have a health worry. We are here to help you and your children with emotional support, health and wellbeing support and urgent mental health support. Call 0800 0234 650: open 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week. 

- Christmas and New Year opening times for our Grenfell NHS night service

Age UK Camden

Homeless and elderly people – meal provisions over the Christmas period / information & services

Help London stay healthy this winter

If you work for the NHS, in whichever role, chances are you’re always being asked advice by friends and family about where to go and what to do.

Winter wise (Independent Age)

Ways to look after yourself during the coldest months


If you need to talk to someone on Christmas day there are free phone lines that you can call:

The Silver Line is the only national confidential and free helpline for older people open every day and night of the year. Phone number: 0800 470 8090

The Samaritans open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Free telephone number 116 123

‘Switchboard’ is the LGBT+ helpline 0300 330 0630

‘Childline’ offers online, phone and text service for young people in need of someone to speak to every day. Free phone number: 0800 1111


NHS England has today launched a consultation which proposes to rein in prescriptions for some ‘over the counter’ products such as dandruff shampoo and drops for tired eyes, diverting up to £136 million into frontline care.

The consultation will not affect prescribing of items for chronic (long term) conditions or where minor illnesses are symptomatic or a side effect of something more serious.



NHS England (London) directly commissions a range of services for London, including public health, armed forces healthcare, health in justice services, and specialised services.
Under the Health and Social Care Act 2012, NHS England has a duty to involve patients and members of the public in its work.

London Patient Voice is an independent citizen scrutiny group set up in 2014, which has the role of reporting on how NHS England London carries out these statutory participation
duties in commissioning decisions. London Patient Voice carries out an independent evaluation of NHS England (London’s) account of how well they are meeting these duties, and produces an independent report on its findings.

You can find out more about how NHS England (London) meets its duties in its latest Annual Account and a previous scrutiny report here https://www.england.nhs.uk/london/our-work/ppv/ 

The closing date for applications is the 12th January 2018.
Key dates: Interview: 19th January 2018 (London)
Mandatory training for successful candidates: 26th January 2018 (London)

Please see attached for further information


Message from Frances Hasler – Healthwatch Camden Director

This is our final eNewsletter for 2017 (attached) so I will start by wishing you all a happy Christmas and New Year. Over the past year we’ve met lots of you in the local community and have enjoyed strong working relationships.

Thank you to all our volunteers, local organisations and communities who have worked with us on various projects. We’re really pleased to have built new relationships including with local schools and our LGBT+ community. We hope to continue this in 2018.