Health

Health

General health concerns

In light of COVID-19, all non-essential services have been temporarily reduced or stopped, with online or telephone support being made available where possible. We urge people to look after their health in this difficult time and, if in doubt, we recommend people to call services for more information.

We ask all service users to stay at home and do not attend a service if you have:

  • a high temperature
  • a new, continuous cough
  • or think you may have come into contact with coronavirus.

We are working closely with Public Health England (PHE) and the local NHS to respond to the situation and PHE are updating the coronavirus page on the GOV.UK website daily. The latest information about confirmed cases of coronavirus in Kent is also published on our Media Hub.

Residents are urged to keep up with guidance and advice from government to keep ourselves safe, protect our health and livelihoods, and come through this together.

Health visiting service

The health visiting service is operating on a reduced basis.

Families with a new baby will still be offered a face-to-face appointment at their home between 10 and 14 days. All other contacts will now be on the phone unless there are exceptional circumstances.

Groups and clinics have been stopped and services will be delivered online or remotely using telephone/skype where possible. Health visitors can be contacted by calling the districts duty line. For more details please visit the Kent Community Health NHS website.

Immunisations

Due to the closure of schools, the immunisations service is currently planning a scaled back immunisation programme and is awaiting further guidance from NHS.

For more information please visit the Kent Community Health NHS website.

Infant feeding services

Breastfeeding drop in groups have been stopped.

Those requiring breastfeeding support are encouraged to:

For those mothers or babies with complex feeding needs, the specialist service will continue to operate and referrals should be made via the Kent Community Health NHS website.

NHS Health Checks

The NHS Health Checks service has been suspended until further notice.

No new appointments will be made and all patients with existing appointments will receive a notification of appointment cancellation.

One You Kent Ashford shop

Unfortunately the One You Kent shop in Ashford is now closed to the public and all groups and events have been postponed.

One You Kent healthy lifestyle service

We encourage people to stay healthy and make positive lifestyle choices. To do this you can:

Referrals will still be accepted to new clients who are happy to be supported. To refer please either:

One You Kent health walks

All health walks have been suspended until further notice.

This includes group walks, social activities and other meetings. Please visit the Walking for Health website or the One You Kent website for more information.

One You Kent lifestyle advisors

Advisers will continue to support clients in their lifestyle journeys. These will be offered as telephone support only.

One You Kent smokefree

Anyone trying to quit smoking with One You will continue to be supported via telephone.

For any new referrals, you can call our support line on 0300 123 1220.

One You Kent Weight loss

All weight loss groups have been stopped temporarily. Support will be offered by telephone for those on existing groups.

Postural stability

Classes have temporarily stopped and no referrals are being taken for the time being.

If you’re using the service, your provider will be in touch to check on you.

Residential recovery housing

The service is currently unable to take any more referrals until further notice.

School Public Health Service

The School Public Health Service is operating on a reduced basis.

All referrals to services including the Emotional Health Service should be made through the Single Point of Access (SPA). Referrals will be triaged daily and referred to an appropriate service. Phone consultations will be offered with advice and signposting where required.

Please contact the service by:

Other School Public Health Services:

  • Vision and hearing assessments for reception year pupils are not being carried out.
  • Chathealth confidential texting service for young people aged 11-19 will run as normal.

Young people can text the School Health Team about any concerns or health issues on 07520 618850. The number is monitored Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

Parents, young people and schools can access a range of helpful information and resources via the Kent Youth website, or for more information visit Kent Community Health NHS website.

Sexual health clinics

If you are attending our service, please consider whether you need to be seen urgently or whether your visit could be postponed. This is to reduce the number of patients sharing our waiting areas. You can access home testing for sexually transmitted infections to avoid attending a clinic. HPV, hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccinations are not urgent and can be postponed.

If you are HIV positive and worried about your risk of coronavirus, there is currently no evidence that people living with HIV are at any greater risk of either getting coronavirus, or becoming unwell due to coronavirus, than the general public. We do not recommend that you should attend for additional blood tests to check your CD4 count.

For more updates visit the British HIV association, however, we do recommend that you follow current NHS guidance about how best to protect yourselves and others from coronavirus. If your appointment is coming up soon then we may contact you beforehand to offer you a telephone or Skype consultation instead of coming into a clinic.

For all new attendances from 23 March 2020, sexual health clinics will operate on an appointment only basis, no longer offering walk in clinics. Patients will be triaged by phone and appointments organised based on those patients presenting the highest risk.

If you would like to discuss your attendance with a member of the team, please call 0300 790 0245 (East Kent) Phone lines open 8am-5pm Mon-Fri or 01622 225713 (West Kent) Phone lines open 8am-10am Mon-Fri.

Substance misuse service

CGL and Forward Trust will continue to take referrals but will screen the most urgent cases. Due to this response times and waiting list times will be longer than usual.

Advice and support to patients will be provided but capacity will be limited due to staff having to self-isolate. Please refer only the most urgent cases. Contingency is being sought for opioid substitution therapy for prescriptions .

Group sessions for psychosocial support will be suspended.

The needle exchange programme will continue to operate.

For more information, visit your provider’s website or call them directly.

Targeted relationships

The service is currently continuing to accept online referrals via the Barnados website, however we will no longer be offering face-to-face sessions. Project workers will aim to deliver sessions through digital means, for example by phone, Skype or Facetime.

For those vulnerable young people still attending school, schools will be asked to provide a quiet environment in order for the session to take place by phone. Project workers will also offer all young people a wellbeing check via phone call between sessions.

The service will continue to accept referrals for the foreseeable future via the usual routes.

Young person substance misuse service

We Are With You will continue to take referrals but will screen for the most urgent cases.

They will offer phone, skype or other digital communication during this time. Please do not make postal new referrals, please alternatively either:

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