Greater Manchester's health and care news: July 2021

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Greater Manchester's health and care news: July 2021

With freedom comes responsibility

Most legal restrictions to control the coronavirus in England have now been lifted.

However, COVID-19 rates are still high and the virus is still spreading. That means we need to continue to be careful and cautious, even if we have been vaccinated.

It’s important to remember that masks must still be worn in healthcare premises, such as GP practices and hospitals.

And we strongly encourage you to still wear face coverings in crowded areas such as shops and super markets.

Anyone using the Metrolink network, bus stations or transport interchanges in Greater Manchester must still wear a face covering unless exempt.

We also recommend that if you are meeting up with people try and do so outdoors, or if indoors to let fresh air in by opening doors and windows.

Everyone should still take free, regular lateral flow coronavirus tests twice a week.

Grab a jab

And please continue to wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds.

It remains vital too that we all make sure we’re vaccinated against COVID-19 to protect ourselves, our loved ones and the NHS.

More than 3 million COVID-19 vaccinations have been given across Greater Manchester. This equates to 1,863,091 first doses and 1,413,782 second doses.

If you’re yet to have either the first or second dose of a coronavirus vaccine it will never be too late to grab a jab.

You can book a vaccination on the NHS website or by calling 1119.

Alternatively walk in clinics are being held across Greater Manchester

Build back fairer

As we start to tentatively look toward the future, we need to think about how we build back a fairer Greater Manchester after the pandemic.

A recent review commissioned by the Partnership has laid bare the link between economic and health inequality, showing how coronavirus has hit poorer people hardest.

Though this has been a problem across the entire country, we now know Greater Manchester had a 25% higher COVID-19 death rate than England as a whole in the 13 months to March 2021.

This high death rate contributed to a decline in life expectancy in the North West region, which was larger than the average in England. Life expectancy fell in 2020 by 1.6 years for men and 1.2 years for women in the North West, compared to 1.3 years and 0.9 years, respectively, across England.

The recently published Build back fairer in Greater Manchester report, from the UCL Institute of Health Equity (IHE) includes a framework setting out bold and ambitious recommendations on how to reduce health inequities.

In the review the director of the IHE, Professor Sir Michael Marmot, has proposed a “moral and practical” plan for government investment in jobs, housing, local services and education to tackle longstanding health and social inequalities in Greater Manchester and similar areas.

Read more

Health and care champ awards

Nominations are open for the Greater Manchester Health and Care Champion Awards 2021.

The awards are a fantastic chance to say thank you to the unsung heroes who have really made a difference in our hospitals and in our communities during the pandemic.

This year’s awards are looking to recognise those people who have really stepped up – from health and care workers, both front line and those in support and administrative roles – to key workers and community champions.

Award categories include key worker and community champions, those who have led innovative practice, volunteers, leaders at any level and those who have helped improve the wellbeing of those around them during such a challenging year.

Nominate your health and care champion

Nominations must be completed by Friday 6 August.

The winners will be announced at a sponsored virtual event in the autumn.

Service helping vulnerable people entering the criminal justice system proves a success

Vulnerable people entering the criminal justice system are getting the support they need thanks to a service commissioned by the Partnership and Greater Manchester Combined Authority.

Greater Manchester’s Integrated Police Custody Healthcare and Wider Liaison and Diversion Service launched back in 2017 and sees healthcare professionals and Liaison and Diversion service staff identifying vulnerable people when they first come into contact with the criminal justice system.


Support is given to individuals affected by issues ranging from physical and mental health problems, homelessness or drug and alcohol issues. In some cases, people have been moved away from the criminal justice system into more appropriate settings for support and treatment.

A report, undertaken by Manchester Metropolitan University, found the service has been a success, with the pilot going on to be rolled out in other areas. Those using the service said it had helped them to turn their lives around and was essential to their positive progress, while partner agencies described the service as critical and necessary.

The service is delivered by Mitie Care and Custody and Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Trust.

Read more

Smoking in pregnancy rates at all-time low

The number of people smoking during pregnancy in Greater Manchester has dropped to the lowest on record, according to recent NHS data.

The number of people smoking at the time of delivery has fallen by around a quarter in the past four years – down from 1 in 8 new mothers in 2017-18 to fewer than 1 in 10 in 2020-2. This means 945 more babies were born smoke-free that would previously have been predicted.

pic of a baby

The decrease shows the success of the Partnership’s Smokefree Pregnancy programme, which was set up in 2018 and is recognised as best practice nationally.

Between April 2020 and March 2021, the programme supported more than 1,700 people on their journey to stop smoking, including both pregnant women and their partners, and saw a 65% successful quit rate.

During the pandemic, the number of women referring themselves to the stop smoking service increased, and personal carbon monoxide monitors were issued, allowing people to complete screenings at home that linked through to a smartphone app which specialist midwives could track.

Read more

Greater Manchester Health and Care Board


Board meeting

The next Greater Manchester Health and Health Board will take place at 2pm on Friday 30 July.

The board can be streamed live online.


Sign-up to watch the board